March 16, 2017

Those Books

Fireplace: DONE! Thank you all for your support.

Looks awesome (to me). We choose a really soft white. It is White Flour from Sherwin Williams. It's true, someone actually got paid to think up that name!

On to painting the walls (Lazy Gray...really? I could do so much better naming paint).

Yesterday, all the art came down off the walls; family photos stacked on dining room table  (anyone in Blogsville know the maximum weight capacity for a dining table with 4" x 4" legs?).

Cleared end tables; moved them and couch, chairs and coffee table to center of room.

Then, moving on to the bookshelf!

Remember, 2017 is the year of the Great Purge for me. Getting rid of shit stuff, lightening the load, clearing the space!

Not so easy. First ten books, need, need, need, oh, I love this one, need, need...OMG, how am I going to do this?

What order should they go? What do I toss, what do I keep?

Oldest first? Dustiest, maybe?

Novels can definitely go, well, except for To Kill A Mockingbird and my first editions of Tom Robbins and Jean Auel collections.

Metaphysics...but all those margin notes and sticky notes?

First Edition of Pinocchio is definitely staying. ( Or, I could E-Bay it and replace the sinks in the front bathroom).

Kids books, definitely going...but wait! What will I read to our great-granddaughter when she stays over?

Deep breathe, Toni, deep breathe.

Do I want to spend Act III of my life dusting books that I might never read again?


Why do I want those 'certain' books on my shelves? Is it, so that after my funeral, strangers come into the 'estate sale' and think, "My, my, this dead woman sure was well read," or " an intellectual" or "Whoa, she was frickin' weird!"

Mostly likely, those strangers will think, "There certainly is a lot of dust in this place!" OR "I bet those bookshelves have created permanent grooves in the hardwood floors!"

Hmm, I don't care what those strangers think.

I've already told my kids and grandchildren to take any books they want.

Responses: "Your books are too woo-woo for me, Mom, but thanks anyway!" (Though, last year, he did take all of my ancient Edgar Rice Burroughs books with a big old grin on his face!)


 "Man, Mom, do we have different tastes in reading!"

                   "You're kidding, right? Do you know how many books I have to pack to move to Massachusetts? You can have some of mine, if you'd like!" (To which I responded, "Okay! Thanks!" and brought home about 20 more tomes).

                    "Can I please have this one, Nana! I've heard it's good!"

So, this is the plan. I'm headed over to Office Max to buy 10 boxes. I will fill them up and label them. Donate, (school, church and metaphysical library), Garage Sale, Keep.

One KEEP box for every ten boxes packed. Max.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it!

(In the meantime, while I'm painting, any of you interested in coming over and dusting off some books? There is wine and cheesecake!)


  1. Replies
    1. But it's California dust and it's 66 degrees here today!!!

  2. Be strong! I used to be that way about books too, but I found that once I did start donating them, it just got easier and easier to do so. I used to tell myself that I was keeping all these beloved books because SOMEDAY I was going to read them AGAIN but who the hell was I kidding? Life doesn't work that way. Out they go!

    1. Going to write "BE STRONG!" on my wrist with a Sharpie!

  3. Baby steps with books. It always begins that way. Once upon a time I couldn't bear the thought of parting with a single book and now I donate them like mad. We moved with tons of books that are sitting in boxes. I didn't have to bring the ones that I've read but I decided to give my older daughter first dibs now that we live so close to each other. Whatever she doesn't take is gone after that. I told my kids that it's time to get rid of all the books I've read because let's face it, I've only got so much time in this world and I'm never going to read them again. I've also got a lot of books waiting to be read, which I'll probably die before I get to, so there's no point holding onto the others! Sounds kind of depressing, my daughter said, but hey, that's life :)

  4. You are so right. My list on To-Read is longer than my bucket list!

  5. liked the idea of family photos in dining room.
    i too have some books which i cannot think to part away but reading you is making me encouraging to do so.
    donating books is a brilliant thought though i have to find people who are interested as i don't have such around.

    1. Family photos make a house a home. I love them everywhere!

  6. I'm a firm believer in things own us! (ok ok, not really but I moved from a 2400 sq ft house to a 800 sq ft house so out they went. And in order to not resent the process even more than I already did, I decided to mantra "These things own me, I no longer am going to be owned", over and over again. Out went the books, furniture clothes etc... I had the "Oh wait, Mom made this.....I should keep that cause." Hardest thing I've done in awhile but in the end it was freeing.

    Good luck to you and your process.

    1. Linda, Thanks for the reminder. We moved into this house from 3200 sq ft with 3 acres. That place did own us but that is where we raised our kids. We had a huge fire blaze through the whole east side of the valley and had to evacuate. We packed 4 dogs, 3 cats, guitar and family photos in the cars. The kids packed their cars and took off.

      Frank and I walked through the house asking ourselves why we owned so much stuff that we were willing to leave behind and let go up in flames.

      As it was, the fire hit our little road from 3 directions but the husbands all stayed with the houses and helped each other save all the houses on our road. 257 houses were lost in the fire.

      We soon sold the house and purged, purged, purged. We promised ourselves we would live in town for 5 years, then build a home in the mountains! Well, we have been 'townies' for 13 years now! As humans are apt to do, we have accumulated. Ugh!

      I am going to make a "Independence Day! These things can no longer own me!"

      Of course, I will keep reminding myself, "But, Linda said..."


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