Our shelves were bursting with books. And although that's not a bad thing, many of the books were twaddle. And not fun twaddle either. Just . . . fluff. So I did something I feel a bit guilty about. I snuck books off the shelves, passing by Pippi with books shoved under my shirt, in my waistband, and wrapped up in playsilks and blankets. "What are you doing?" she asked a few times.
One of these days she's gonna catch on. Momma starts attacking the bookshelves, walking around with square bumps under her shirt. That means purging.
But today was not that day. She was mostly oblivious. I became especially sneaky when handling her Junie B. Jones stash. I slipped this one and that one under cushions, sliding them on the floor, around the corner where they disapeared into a paper bag. I left her favorite titles. I'm not ruthless. But do we really need the entire collection? I think not.
Four bag fulls of twaddle later, our shelves are neater. Somehow fresh. No longer does a solid tug on one book pull down half the shelf's collection. Now we can flip through the books on the shelf, instead of taking out stack after stack, searching for the perfect book. Now when Pippi asks for the Seven Silly Eaters, I can find it. That one had been missing for months.
And the kids noticed. Nothing was said. Certainly no, "Hey Mom, this looks great!" Nor were there any tears over missing titles (I swear, most will never be missed.) But the kids spent most of the evening pulling books off the shelves and either looking quietly through them, or bringing them to me for a reading. We spent two and a half hours before bed, just reading. Book after book after . . .
I'm actually suffering from a bit of sore throat. I can't remember the last time I read myself hoarse.
And all it took was a bit of weeding.