|Far wall of the guest room|
The place in which I lived previously was a Craftsman house I'd rented for--good grief--21 years. In that time I'd acquired over 5,000 books. Actually it was almost double that, but I'd done a massive cull several years before. However, now I received notice that my landlord was moving his kids, now of college age, into the house and I had eight weeks to vacate. Eight weeks to pack up 21 years and find a new place to live.
I panicked, I cried, I did another massive cull cutting my books down to about 2,500 and I packed. In the end, there were 107 boxes, 74 of which were books. The day came and, with the help of many dear friends and the movers, I moved 8 blocks to my new, bigger place which has lots of wall space and--ta-dah--a den. In that 8' x 14" den, we stacked the non-kitchen, bath, bedroom boxes wall-to-wall, floor-to-ceiling, three stacks deep.
I have always done bracket-and-board, and yes, some brick and board, shelving as it's (1) cheap and (2) provides the maximum board-feet of space for books. I had a fair amount of materials from the old place, but it's not something easy to put up by one's self although I did get some of them up. But here's where the "more" comes in."
|Guests will always find something to read|
Jody had scheduled a day to help me with shelves and, when I happened to talk to Jane, she volunteered to come as well. The three of us spend 4 hours measuring, laughing, re-measuring and putting up shelves. Every time I walk into my guest room, I see not shelves, but the three of us putting the shelves up and laughing. Very sadly, a couple year's ago, Janie at 62 years old developed a very fast moving cancer and was gone only two months after the last time we'd spoken promising to meet for lunch.
|Long wall of the entry hall|
The three of us measured, cut, stained and by the end of that day I had shelves on both sides of my long entry hall plus a coat rack. By the end of the weekend, every book was unpacked and I stood there stroking their spines--you have to be a reader to appreciate that,
And then there's my friend, Linda, from my mystery group. Since I hurt my back having my car(s) rear-ended twice in one month, reaching isn't always easy. That means books don't always get shelved as often as I'd like. Linda, bless her, periodically comes over to help cull, and shelve, and then we crochet/knit and chat. She says she likes looking at my books, but it really is a gift.
So you see, my bookshelves aren't bookshelves; they are living memories of the love and kindness, and blessing of friends knowing just how much doing these things would mean--not just on those days, but every day.