Organizing my books and an unfortunate incident

So remember back in October I went away to a conference and came back with a whole pile of books?  Or did I just share that on Instagram?  I can’t remember now but regardless, this stack of books below has sat on my hope chest ever since then.  Plus the longer it sat there, the bigger the pile grew.

Clutter is a magnet for more clutter.

The reason I didn’t put them away is because the “home” I have for all my books was not only pretty full but it needed to be weeded out.  We moved into this house 2.5 years ago and I haven’t given it an overhaul since then.  Plus you know how I’m a stickler for the one in, one out rule.  For every book I was going to put on my shelf, I was going to have to take one to donate it.


So I followed my PROCESS and removed all the books from my book shelf.  This is actually the same armoire that used to hold my sweaters in the old house.  Only in this house I didn’t need that space for sweaters because my closet is much larger, so I decided to use it for books instead.  Works great because I do like having my books in the bedroom right next to my bed and it puts a nice limit on to the number of books I can have :)

I sat on the floor going through each stack and book one by one.  As I found a book I wanted to get rid of of I tossed it up onto the bed (we have a pretty high bed).  Well I guess I didn’t realize how high that stack was getting because would you believe that entire pile slid right off the bed and onto my HEAD.  Oh boy did that ever hurt.  Big hardcover books at that too.  And yes I cried.  Bleep, bleep, bleep.  Actually I didn’t swear, but only because I was too busy crying.  Accckkkk!  My books tried to kill me!  Well I showed them and quickly tossed them right into the donation box to teach them all a lesson.

I’m not going to let clutter mess with me!!

I got over my near death experience and continued on in my quest to make room for my beloved new books that, as of yet, have not tried to kill me.

I ended up with TWO boxes of books to give away.  Way more books than I had new.  Gone, gone, gone!

I was so happy.  I know the shelf doesn’t look that much different but I did try to categorize them by fiction/non-fiction and of course topic.  But I don’t get too bent up over the smaller details too much.  I’m just happy it’s done!

Now I’m off to the thrift store before my books try to kill me again.  I swear they’re after me!!

Filed under: Containerizing, Office


20 Responses to Organizing my books and an unfortunate incident

  1. 2
    Caitlin says

    Oh what nasty books. I guess they liked being around you! I’ve got to do a bookshelf declutter. I think it might be on my New Years list now.

  2. 3
    Kate @ Teaching What is Good says

    Well, Laura, I have to say I have LITERALLY ‘been there, done that”…more than once piles of books have fallen onto my head! Books seem to be the bane of my household! We have 14 book cases (16 if you count the one in the attic and the one in the basement) PLUS we still have tons of books in tubs!!

    Hope your head is better.

  3. 4
    Sinea says

    I was thrilled to find out that Good Will takes books. I’ve donated many. The greatest chore is to make sure my name and phone number are not inside the cover before i give them away. :)

  4. 5
    Jenny says

    The piles just keep growing. Good for you for letting go!

  5. 6
    Susanne says

    I would be utterly devastated if my books tried to kill me after all the pampering and spoiling I have given them! I’m slowly working my way through my ever growing book stack and being tough with myself about getting rid of them as they are read unless it’s something I truly think I’m going to read again. I’ve never been so tough with beloved books. I need an amoire like that!

  6. 7
    Shanna says

    May I also suggest that everyone donate their unwanted books to their local library. Our library does twice yearly book sales from donations that help fund library programs. Good to keep it local!

    • 7.1
      Janet says

      I’m sorry your books attacked you!

      I would like to know where you donate your books – I read Sinea’s comment about Good Will – I tried my local library, but they would not accept my books, even though they are in almost-new condition, because they didn’t want to “do the inventory” required to accept them –

      I would gladly clear away so many of my books, which have long ago taken over my apartment, if I knew of a place to donate them –

      • Laura says

        I donate everything to our local thrift store because 100% of the profits go to support our local hospital to buy new much needed equipment. Really great cause and I love that I can support it in this way :)

  7. 8
    Michelle says

    Wow! We share a love of books. Like you, my storage space is minimal so I use most of mine for decor. I stack them neatly with a lamp on top or a picture frame to make it appear that I need them to enhance the room or heighten a display. The truth is that I can’t decide which ones to part with.

    I am envious of your decision making :)

    Read on….

  8. 9
    Susan says

    Two years ago, I bought an Ipad. Since I got the Ipad, I have downloaded all of my books from my local library system. I probably have read 200 books in the last 2 years, have not paid for any of the books and don’t have any of the clutter. I’m not saying you have to buy an Ipad, but if you have a tablet, try downloading the books and you’ll never go back to paper books and clutter.

  9. 10
    Annette {This Simple Mom} says

    I have a box of 50ish books ready to go…but I still have so many more. I think your new bookshelves look nice!

    • 10.1
      Laura says

      Thanks Annette!!

  10. 12
    Jess says

    You are very brave – for both surviving your Book Attack, and for getting rid of two whole boxes of books in the first place! I’m not sure I could do that; most of our books are really good books! We probably could donate a few, particularly our nonfiction kids reference books that we don’t use much thesedays, but I think it would be hard to cull, generally speaking, because us kids are all at different stages of life and interests(‘us kids’ consisting of four teenagers between 13-19 years), not to mention Mum and Dad, and some of us kids reading Mum and Dad’s books now, too.

    Really good food for thought!

  11. 13
    Holly says

    You can unload your books over at!! You list the books you have and when someone requests them you just pay for a bit of shipping to send them. You get credits and can use them to request books you want. I’ve gotten rid of a bunch of books this way. It’s not a guarantee that anyone will want them, but you never know.

  12. 14
    Becky L. says

    Books can be dangerous. I recently went through our big book case in the family room and got rid of some books and I had a few dump disasters and ouches. Thought I’d get more gone than expected and still don’t have the space I want yet. Am working on getting at least one entire series gone and then re-arrange. There’s games on there too. I will blog about this soon. It’s a process…part of my projects to do last year. Sigh!

  13. 15
    Sarah says

    It’s because you were trying to get rid of them. They thought they’d better preempt the attempt. ;-)

  14. 16
    Teri Polastri says

    I also have given my 2 children an ornament every year based on their interests during the year. They are both now in college and still receive one but for the last 5 years they started giving me and my husband one as well so I had to get a small fake tree to put up every year for mine and my husbands ornaments. What fun we have singing Christmas Songs and decorating each year. I’m going to be looking for the snap and lock this year!


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