I was an Engish major in college. I have had to buy many books in my day. I still have many of the anthologies in my bookshelf and also many of the classics. I’m ready to take another closer look at my bookshelves and let the books go that are not truly loved or useful for me or our family in the present. This week I am decluttering the books.
Visiting the Library
My sisters and I spent hours in our local library when we were growing up. We checked out dozens of books and devoured them through the week. We didn’t own many books and getting a new book at Christmas was a special treat. Reading was and still is magical to me. I have fond memories of my whole family snuggled together around our fireplace reading the brisk afternoon away.
As a mom with voracious readers, we also frequently find ourselves at the library with dozens of books spread throughout the house. Books are truly amazing. Nothing makes me happier than seeing my boys quietly engrossed in a novel.
Books versus E-readers
We just recently bought a Kindle * (affiliate link – please see below) for my son. We’re still getting used to reading from a device versus having an actual book to hold and pages to turn, but there are distinct advantages to having an e-reader in our house. One thing I do know about myself and my older children is that we very rarely re-read books, so to buy or hold onto them is not necessary.
Rationalizations for Keeping the Books
The books that remain on my bookshelves are from distinct phases in my life: Undergraduate, Graduate, and Christian books. Here are my rationalizations as I was decluttering the books:
- I’ve held onto the academic books because I felt I “should”. Aren’t you supposed to hold onto those books after the thousands of dollars spent earning the degrees?
- Another thought is “I should know this information so I’ll keep it for reference”
My Christian books are dear to me, especially after becoming a new Christian in college, but I’m ready to let most of them go.
- One of my rationalizations for holding onto the Christian books was to share them with my children one day. As I sort, I’ll have to consider whether it is appropriate for my children to read now and share it with them, or whether I want to re-read the book in the next several months. If not, I’ll donate them.
As I’ve sat in my bedroom and considered the space, I’ve come to realize that bookshelves take up a lot of space – space I’d like to reclaim. I have plans to use two of our bookshelves in a different functional way for our household.
So, the business of sorting begins…
Are books hard for you to part with? How did you decide which books to keep and which to donate?
* This means that at no additional cost to you, I may get a small percentage of the sale if you buy through these links. Thanks for your support!