Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Things I Forgot, Good Book Karma, Weird Shelf Coincidences, etc.

I completely forgot to mention that The Moon on a Stick (see review, below) was my 12th TBR read, so I'm officially finished with the TBR Challenge (although, I still plan to work harder at reading the books that have been around my house, longer). Yippee! It was also the first book I've completed from my Spring Thing challenge list, so I'm just happy all under about that. It was a pretty fun, light book but not one I'll want to read a second time, so I'm going to offer it up for grabs for Buy a Friend a Book Week, even though I bought it a long time ago. Just leave me a message in the comment section of this post if you're interested and I'll draw a name on Saturday. I'll ship it anywhere in the world because it just wants a good home.

Here's something interesting we noticed at Faulkner's estate. See this nifty bookshelf?

I believe that shelf was in Jill Faulkner's bedroom. My husband had drifted off when I saw it and snapped a photo to record it. Later, we met up and he said, "Hey, did you see that shelf in the bedroom upstairs?" and we laughed about how stunned we both were to see a shelf like the one in our own home. If you enlarge this, please just remember that we have more dust in humid environments. It's not just that I suck at housewifing. Here's ours:

Besides the fact that this little piece of furniture is embarrassing evidence of conspicuous consumption, it also happens to have been built by my grandfather. It was tucked off to the side of my grandmother's staircase in her Nebraska basement and I happened across it after her funeral. The books that were on the shelf were actually what initially caught my eye, but I thought the bookshelf was beautiful. My father, who died unexpectedly the following year, told me Grandpa built it and asked if I'd like to buy it from the estate (because the will was outdated, everything had to be sold - really, quite a mess). I said, "Oh, wow, definitely." The greedy cousins and other relatives who had been ransacking her house had totally overlooked this little shelf and it was because of my love of books that I found it. See the painting of tulips on top, behind a candle on the left? My grandmother painted that. Those are my two treasures from their home. I'm working on trying to update the contents of this shelving unit. The bottom shelf contains a good portion of the Usborne Books I acquired (I sold Usborne Books in order to earn discounts), when I was homeschooling the eldest.

Another thing I didn't entirely forget but was too tired to mention last night . . . Yesterday was the beginning of the 30-Day Organizational Challenge. I'm not going to post a "before" photo because it's embarrassing enough admitting I have that many books crammed on Grandpa's shelf. Geez, you should see our bedroom. No, no, you shouldn't! Anyway, the objective is to choose one room or space (a closet is fine) to transform, organize and make into a useful space in a creative manner. I can always use a good kick in the pants when it comes to cleaning and organizing and I've chosen our bedroom. It is a mess, trust me. Wish me luck, strength, etc. Mostly strength to part with things we no longer need. I'm clingy, unfortunately.

Coming up: A Wahoo! Wednesday post


  1. I like that shelf (apparently so did Mrs. Faulkner). I wish I could get organized. I have this closet.....grrr, I don't want to think about it.

  2. Anonymous12:16 PM

    That bookshelf is really wonderful, especially because your grandfather made it. Any chance your grandfather made the other one?

    Done? You're DONE with the TBR challenge? [gnashes teeth with envy].

  3. Cool bookcase! I love the little areas off to each side. And how nice to have it and the painting. I have an antique twin bed frame my grandfather built (with beautiful carved posts and detail on the headboard and footboard) that was my mom's, then mine, and then my daughter's. Now it's Frankie's, if he should ever decide to sleep in that room! :)

    Good luck with the organizing. I have a couple of spots that need attention this month so I can add to my garage sale pile. Our neighborhood has a huge garage sale (at each homeowner's residence - just advertised as one big one) on the 5th of May. We always enjoy it, especially if the weather's nice and warm. We drag our nice rocking chairs off the porch, fill a big thermos with coffee, turn on some music and hang out in the driveway/front yard all morning. We even make a little bit of money, which is always nice.

  4. I would love to own that book. Wow I didn't pick 12 but I have got about 3 done. :)

  5. Anonymous4:01 PM

    That is too cool about the bookshelf! And, that 30 day organizational challenge scares me to bits! ha,ha. I should organize, I say this every day it seems. Sigh.

  6. Kookie,

    Thanks and I'm laughing, here. I know about those frustrating closets. My whole house needs organizing, really. I'm not sure I'm up to the bedroom, but I'll give it a try.


    Yep, the fact that my grandfather made the shelf makes it really special. I think he just built for himself, for fun, so not likely he made Faulkner's. In his working life, he was a civil engineer.

    Yep, done, although almost nothing I've read off the stacks was on the list I wrote up! I don't stick to lists very well at all, but I'm trying harder to read from what I've already got. Don't be envious. I haven't even made a dent in my stacks. I feel pitiful.


    Thanks, yeah, those side areas are quite functional. Actually, photographing the shelf worked out nicely because I noticed some books I need to get rid of. You know how you walk right past things and don't give them any thought? Think I've been doing so with Grandpa's shelf! So funny about Frankie inheriting the bed! LOL Lucky cat!

    I envy your neighborhood garage sale. I got tired of dealing with garage sales, a few years back, and now I just donate everything. Thanks for the luck; I'll need it. :)


    I think you're the only person who has said so. Cross your fingers, you might have a book coming next week. :)

    You don't need to hit the stacks as desperately as I do, since you have a great library and check out more!


    I'm actually a natural organizer, but I've kind of . . . uh, let things go. LOL I've got a lot of work to do. It's a lot bigger challenge than just sitting around hacking away at a stack of books, for me, anyway!

  7. Anonymous9:34 PM

    I would love to own that book. Even if I don't win your contest, I'll to run out and buy that one! From your review it sounds great!

  8. That's a very nice bookshelf. I could always use another one or two, maybe even three. :-)

    Congratulations on finishing the TBR Challenge. I'm right on target to read one book a month, although for some reason, I feel like I'm behind. Maybe it's because of all the other challenge reading I'm doing.

    I would like to throw my name in for the book, although I've already been lucky enough to win a book in one of your drawings. I'm not sure it would be fair for me to win twice.

  9. Amanda,

    Thanks, it's a good book. I'll toss your name in the hat. :)


    That's okay; all's fair in love and book drawings. I'll add you to the drawing. :)

    I've run out of shelf space, so I need to start reading faster!!!! When it comes to challenges, I do tend to try to just get them over with; I never considered just trying for one per month on the TBR. I have way too many books I need to get through!

  10. Anonymous5:18 AM

    Hi, always enjoj your blog.
    The book soundsgreat--please put my name into the hat--I would love to win a book

    many thanks Margaret

  11. Margaret,

    Thanks, I'm glad you enjoy my blog and I'll definitely throw your name in the hat! :)

  12. I join Carrie in gnashing my teeth... but I'll stop gnashing and get back to my reading (and knitting) - that is a wonderful bookshelf!

  13. Teabird,

    Now, now, just stop that gnashing. :) I never did get around to learning how to knit, this winter - I envy you that. Maybe now that it's gone shockingly cold on us, I should give it a whirl.

    And, thank you. That shelf is my favorite because it's not just any old shelving unit; it has history. I love knowing my grandfather made it.

  14. I love bookshelves and that one is definitely a beauty...wow!!!

    Good luck with your bedroom, can't wait to see the pictures :)


  15. Thanks, Laura!

    No progress, so far, but the hubby is going away on business and kiddo will be back in school, tomorrow. That should give me more time to shove, sweep, move, toss and organize. :)

  16. I'm wondering whether you thought selling Usborne books was worth it (I'm considering it), but judging from the number you have on that adorable shelf, I'm guessing it was!

  17. Lazy Cow,

    I have to tell you I absolutely hated selling the books because it's done through cold-calling, setting up parties and book fairs, etc. I was much, much happier earning a lousy wage in a bookstore than I was going out and selling the books. But, yes, I did manage to acquire almost every title they had, at the time, and my eldest son read them all. So, if you can stand that kind of sales job, it's worth it. I was one of the top 10 sellers in the U.S. at least 4 or 5 months, so that helped. But, it was very time-consuming. I spent so much time on the phone that I had to lock the door sometimes because the kids didn't want me on the phone and would try to make noise to get me off. I hated doing that.


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