Decluttering Books

25 Jan

My Take

DiVoran Lites


We may be having a guest soon. We don’t have them often now that our parents have moved on and the grandchildren are grown. That’s the reason we now use that room as an office.

Yesterday, I looked around and came up with a brilliant idea. We could trade the light weight, sectioned rattan couch in there for the futon couch which would be more comfortable for sleeping. Bill came in with his metal measuring tape and we measured all the available walls to see where the futon couch would fit.



The closet in this room isn’t a closet anymore. It holds two four-foot tables where I write and paint. On the opposite wall is my computer, one wall has a window where morning sun comes in.



We decided the couch would fit under the window, but that was where I had the keyboard I’m going to learn to play one of these days and a bookcase as well as a tall dresser.



“When are the yard men coming again so we can commission them to move the futon couch?” Bill asked. In Florida we have things mowed and trimmed all year, but in winter the schedule slows down.

“Don’t know, they could come today or tomorrow.” I saw what he was getting at. We’d better be ready for them.

We moved the rattan couch out, and scooted the keyboard and the bookcase across the room leaving the space under the window open. In the process the bookcase tripped over a rug and a shelf- full of books tumbled out onto the floor.

Oh well, I’d been meaning to declutter. Onisha told me Rebekah Lyn was decluttering her library on the Dr. Martin Luther King’s holiday and it inspired me.

I thought I’d only clean the now empty shelf since the books on the others had stayed in place. I have a habit of getting rid of things and years later wishing I still had them. Which books could I do without? I had a lot of expensive art books. What a waste to “throw” them out. Of course I could donate them to the library. Just last week I went down and scanned the shelf myself and came home with a total value of $400.00 worth of brand-new books for which I had paid thirteen dollars. When I finish them, I’ll give them to friends or re-donate them.

At first I got that familiar feeling of panic I get when it comes to making a decision, so I did what I usually do, I winged a prayer His way. “Help me in this, please, Lord. In a moment I recalled that when I was following Fly Lady, who gives suggestions on how to keep the house clean and uncluttered, she said that people often keep things out of sentiment, which is true. In this case, though, I decided to keep the books I felt good about and let the rest go. I spread them on the floor and once I’d gotten into the task I included the books on the other two shelves, as well.

The small photo albums gave me a thrill of anticipation, so of course I kept those. Next, I got a few surprises from some of the most expensive ones. I didn’t like them, never had liked them, and never would like them. The money was spent and gone, what was the good of having them take up space now? Eventually I got them all sorted and loaded into the car.

The “boys” didn’t come that day, but we were ready for them whenever they did. Before bed that night, I stopped back into the office and took another look around. All of a sudden it hit me: that heavy futon couch would never enter this room. It would have to come down a narrow hallway and make a sharp turn into the room. I went to get Bill and his trusty measuring tape, but he didn’t need to come. He’s been moving things in and out of that room for fifty years.

Now we know that if our guest does come, she’ll have to sleep on the futon in the family room or choose the rattan one already in the office. We’ll try to make her as comfortable as possible, and give her some privacy.

The bookcase now has room for more books. The library’s donation shelf is richer, the trunk of the car is back to normal. And I feel good about decluttering. When I looked up Fly Lady to get the URL I was tempted to stay there. I will go back. Yesterday we had company and I cleaned well and carefully and made some things more attractive. I think I’ve got the bug now and I’ll just keep going until the whole house is as beautifully simple as I can make it, depending on how I feel, of course. Maybe the guest will come and maybe she won’t, but it is true that all things work together for good for those who love God and who are the responders according to His purpose.

Romans 8:28

Work for the Night is Coming


You might enjoy reading this devotional:  Freely You Have Received, Freely Give







One Response to “Decluttering Books”

  1. Old Things R New January 25, 2016 at 10:45 am #

    I can be ruthless when it comes to decluttering books, except for my D.E. Stevenson and Miss Read novels.


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