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I am so inspired by you mamas. Hundreds of books gone!

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Hi. My name is Emily, and I'm a book-a-holic.

I had ten tall, wide bookshelves in my house, and that's not counting what I've stored at my mom's house.

I have been a lurker on this thread for awhile, and you all are so inspirational to me. The other day, I was defending my books from the passionate love of my teething 12 month old - no, no, honey, let's put that back on the shelf, that's mama's book - you all know the story! I had an "ah ha" moment - why was I doing this???!?

I'm in a simplifying mood, and I'm down to three bookshelves now of "must keeps" - I was ruthless yesterday, and I've purged 7 shelves of books I haven't read in years...some I never liked in the first place...some I kept for sentimental reasons (I admit, I enjoyed "The Scarlet Letter" in high school. So? ). I went through and asked myself honestly which books I really love and which I was just keeping and storing and hauling around with me when I move (44 boxes last move; the movers hated me).

I sold a bunch on webuyyourbooks dot com - whoever recommended that here, it was great - they accept everything and don't pay much, but I have a whole box going for $16, which will buy dh and I dinner!

The rest are going to the thrift store.

I'm going downstairs to attack basement mess today - out it goes!

You mamas rock! Thanks for helping me simplify. I love MDC.
post #2 of 16
Good for you!

I keep telling myself I can borrow books for free from the library yet I enjoy buying books and reading them at my leisure!

Sincerely,
Debra, homeschooling mom of 4 ages 9 1/2, 8 1/2, 6 1/2, and 38mos
post #3 of 16
congrats!

Books are hard to get rid of, but it feels so good once they're gone--you can really *See* the ones that you cherish!
post #4 of 16
We are getting rid of lots of kids books. We never read them. My kids like books from the library and some variety. We also have a shelf full of those send away book club nature books from when my grandmother moved. Those have just got to go. I need the shelf space for other things. Like my DH said regarding those with the internet we don't really need them anymore. Besides, why the heck do I need a 1" thick book on the Statue of Liberty. :

Great to hear your story of freeing yourself!!!!
post #5 of 16
That's inspiring. My mission for today is to liberate 2 bookshelves full of books: when we move, I'm going down to 1, and only 1, bookcase. I'm both terrified and excited.
post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 
It is terrifying! Seriously. I was purging, and with every book I put into the pile, it was very nearly a personal rejection -- it was like, "I liked you...a lot. It's just that you can't live at my house anymore." I've never done that before.

I have to admit, though, it's opening the way to the rest of my house. I'm an organized person - all of my stuff is in labeled Rubbermaids in the basement or neatly organized on shelves -- but what I'm finding is that I'm organizing and sorting and storing and labeling and keeping things that I don't need!

Sort of an eyeopener.

Thank you for the support, everyone. Big steps here.
post #7 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by flapjack
That's inspiring. My mission for today is to liberate 2 bookshelves full of books: when we move, I'm going down to 1, and only 1, bookcase. I'm both terrified and excited.
Let us know how it goes.
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrfath
Besides, why the heck do I need a 1" thick book on the Statue of Liberty. :
You are so right! It's amazing how we accumulate books like that. I had some that I admit...never read...thought might be interesting or wonderful when I bought them, and then they sat on a shelf for ...years...!
post #9 of 16
I did one sorting through my books and will do another.

We do need another bookshelf ( this will mean two bookshelves for "family" books, both boys have bookshelves in their rooms.) Am hoping to have enough leftover space on the new bookshelf to put all our cds.

Hopefully, I can get rid of many more books this time around. I have several I haven't finished reading...maybe once I read them, I can let them go!

Who knows, maybe I will purge so many, another bookshelf won't be needed.

Thanks for the inspiration.

P.S. I love my books. I know what you mean.
post #10 of 16
[QUOTE=hopefulfaith]sold a bunch on webuyyourbooks dot com - whoever recommended that here, it was great - they accept everything and don't pay much, but I have a whole box going for $16, which will buy dh and I dinner!

The rest are going to the thrift store.

QUOTE]

Hi Emily...

Got so inspired when I saw this post that I brought piles down from my attic, but webuyyourbooks.com accepted nothing! Kept telling me they were not buying because there was low or no demand My local thrift stores refuse to take books. I hate to throw them out but am in a decluttering mode myself. Am tempted to take them after hours and shove them in the library's return box!!!

Any other ideas, anyone?
post #11 of 16
You can also try Barnes and Noble online. Go to the textbook section and click on "sell your textbooks." Sometimes "textbooks" include classics that college students use in English literature classes. When I was an undergrad, we read a book every week for a semester. I checked most out from the library, but those that I had to buy I ended up being able to sell to Barnes and Noble. They don't pay much, but they do pay for the shipping. Also try ecampus.com for the same thing.

I sell a lot of my textbooks and personal books (that I don't want to hang on to) at half.com. If you have an ebay account, it's easy. They keep 10 or 15% commission, but that's it. I just sold one of my textbooks from this summer yesterday-after the commission was paid, I recouped 72% of my original cost. Had I sold it to the campus bookstore, I would have recouped 20%. Quite a difference!
post #12 of 16
Thread Starter 
[QUOTE=erikandgregsmom
Got so inspired when I saw this post that I brought piles down from my attic, but webuyyourbooks.com accepted nothing! Kept telling me they were not buying because there was low or no demand My local thrift stores refuse to take books. I hate to throw them out but am in a decluttering mode myself. Am tempted to take them after hours and shove them in the library's return box!!![/QUOTE]

Oh, wow, that sentence in my post was so definitely a typo!!!

I didn't intentionally mislead anyone - it should have read "they DON'T accept everything and don't pay much" -- most of my books were not accepted (<25% is a generous estimate) and "not paying much" is a generous statement (for instance, I received $0.02 for "The Quotable Climber"). However, I wanted to purge so badly that I actually took their offers - although the most I received was $1.63 for a single book; most were less than $1. A whole box got me $16.

I'm so sorry about that - another vote for proofreading one's posts, hey?
post #13 of 16
Janet, our local library accepts books for their regular booksales. We also have a women's group that holds an annual used book sale around here, it is very popular.

Notice I know where all of the old books are sold???


Just reading this thread is making me very anxious.

I love old kids books.....old kids library books I have birth books, reference books, young adult series...OMG.

Emily, you are very inspiring, I don't know if I can do it. Can't I just be a book collector??
post #14 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mom4tot
Can't I just be a book collector??
Yes, yes, yes, yes you can. Am I allowed to say that on the "decluttering and organizing" forum??

I think, though, that the main point of decluttering/organizing is removing the things and "stuff" from our physical spaces that just takes time and energy to take care of when it doesn't give that energy back to us... I refuse to part with books that I absolutely love and still have several shelves devoted to them. They make me happy and are part of who I am.

However, when I finally "got it" that I was spending time taking care of things that didn't mean much to me - spending more time prying books out of my teething son's mouth than I had spent with the books themselves in the last decade (or sometimes two decades! ) - out those books went. There were more than I thought of that sort.



P.S. - I have the entire yellow-backed edition set of Nancy Drew books. Never tossing them. And I feel like I'm having another boy - who's going to read them? Me. The same person who re-reads "Little Women" and "Jo's Boys" every summer.
post #15 of 16
Just a thought...

When YDS was little, I purged books like crazy (sold them all at half.com) until all three of the huge bookcases in our LR were full only on the top half. They were already anchored to the walls. Then we put YDS's toys on the bottom shelves and voila! Toy storage that YDS could reach, and book storage that he couldn't get to!

Of course, now that he's older and will leave the books alone, I've started to accumulate again.
post #16 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by hopefulfaith
the main point of decluttering/organizing is removing the things and "stuff" from our physical spaces that just takes time and energy to take care of when it doesn't give that energy back to us...
Well said
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