Saturday, July 2, 2011

Surrounded by Books

Have you ever seen that episode on "Two and a Half Men" where Alan totally loses it in the book store? He's sad and upset that his little boy is growing up and doesn't need him as much anymore. So, Charlie, actually trying to be helpful, tells Alan that now he'll have the time to do the things he really wants to do. At first, Alan agrees and is happy, thinking about reading....and then becomes unglued, thinking he doesn't have enough time left in his life to read all the books he yearns to read. He starts yelling as he pulls one book after another off the shelves, and finally slips down onto the floor, sobbing as he drops books everywhere. (I found it hilarious, but then I have a warped sense of humor.)
 (courtesy: Google)
Yesterday afternoon I was attempting yet again to de-clutter my loft. It's such a beautiful room, with large windows, a ceiling fan, overlooks our entry foyer. I also have my collection of CD's, a few books and knick-knacks on a shabby-chic bookshelf. But, since we really don't use the room, over the years it's become my "craft" room. I work on my homemade cards there. I stash old photos, magazines and books in there. All with the promise to myself that I'll get it cleaned up and organized soon. But, unfortunately, the minute I walk past it, going down the stairs, I forget about it...until the next time I come up the stairs, go down the stairs, etc.

So, yesterday, I said to myself, "Self, you are going to get a good start on this room. You have no excuses, particularly since you're in kind of a writing slump!"  Hmmm...KIND OF?!

First things first. Pull out all the books that are in the shelf with really deep shelves, and then dust it. OMG, I found all kinds of books that I'd completely forgotten I had! It was like first...but then, I began to feel a little like Alan. I have all these books I WANT to read. Some I even began at one time, but for some reason, just couldn't get into. Novels, memoirs, How-To books about writing (boy, do I ever need to start on those!)...

       (photo: courtesy The Overweight Bookshelf blog)

So, I began stacks of books.

One - books to definitely read asap.
Two - books to read after I read all in stack number one.
Three - books to donate to library
Four - books to use in my blog give-aways
Five - books to sell in our Saturday Writers Silent-Auction

I found myself completely surrounded by books and feeling overwhelmed. That's when the TV episode crossed my mind. I also felt a bit like the girl in the photo above, only I was sitting on the floor. How had this happened? Why wasn't I reading as much as I used to? I can think of two reasons: The time I spend writing my book, and the time I spend blogging. I need to make up my mind what the most important thing(s) are in my life (besides family & friends) and spend quality time on those. And reading is being pushed up to Number One for the month of July.

What about you? Do you have a task you keep putting off? Do you feel you are spending your time on what's really important to YOU?

Welcome to my newest follower: Jo. I hope you'll stop by often and always enjoy what you read and see! Thank you! 

"Far away there in the sunshine are my highest aspirations. I may not reach them, but I can look up and see their beauty, believe in them, and try to follow where they lead." —Louisa May Alcott


  1. I have a spare bedroom/office that needs a major overhaul. I've been doing a little at a time, but have also been successful at putting off the brunt of the work.

  2. I'm spending more time with my sweetie - at least this weekend. It's not a task, but it's something we've each neglected a little lately.

  3. I SO understand this post! I have been there.Sometimes I have to just jump in and weed those books to death...shut my eyes and bag them up and get them out of the house.

    Right now, no book reading because of Storm Country submissions. I am reading and rereading weather pieces! You might tell your Saturday Writers we are short on fiction...anyone want to write a short story where HEAT is a character!

    Happy Fourth of July, Becky!

  4. I've done most of the decluttering lately...and a lot of reading. I've totally slacked off on writing. I had two stories I wanted to submit, but I've missed those deadlines.

    I've lost my muse (or is it my mind?).

  5. You're my kind of lady, Becky! Surrounding onself with books is the only way to live. I have hundreds scattered around every room in the house, and though they're neatly organized they also fuel my procrastination habit! I need to read less, write more...LOL!

  6. I need to de-stash all my drawers and closets. I have been putting it off for a year. I am starting this week. No, really I am!

    Love your music. Love the photo of Vern looking out the front door. My two dogs do that too.

    Love you blog Becky :)
    Hugs to you and Happy Independence Day!

  7. OMG. Mr. G and I went through something similar before we re-carpeted. We have far too many books, and I always have more books waiting to be read than actually read. I made a new rule this year - for every book I buy, I must read three in the TBR pile. So far, I'm sticking to it.

    Good luck with your goals!

  8. I never thought about all the books I can't read - thanks! - lol

    Oh sure I putt hings off - I think it is human nature!

    Happy 4th

  9. I too feel like there is not enough time to read all the books I want to. In fact I read three at a time in different rooms.

  10. Hi Becky...The small table near my bed has two revolving mini-mountains of books.

    Dozens more cram shelves of a nearby bookcase. Downstairs in the living room, OMG, bookshelves from floor to ceiling are bursting at the seams.

    Some shelves now have double layers of books. Do they need weeding out? DEFINITELY? Have I been able to get myself to do it? Nayyyyyy.

    I did clean out two closets this weekend and that felt GREAT. Now, to get to the crammed office and spare room (oye) at the end of the hall. Glad I'm not the only one who is a Major Procrastinator.

    Can you believe I just cut out an add to an upcoming used book sale? hee hee Susan

  11. Becky I look at all the books I have and think I will never read them all but there is a 'chance' as I'm only 61 so I sigh and keep on going. Put things off? Girl I am the Queen of that. Still I've tried to do some decluttering and I'm getting better. I've got books to go through and do some piles like you. I did take a stack of books to my library last week and it felt oh so good! hugs, Linda

  12. Great post, Becky!! I love books and don't think it's ever possible to have too many. (My husband disagrees, though, as we've moved several times, and books weigh alot...adding to the cost of a moving van!!)

    I have begun reading more this year than I have in years past. Too often, blogging, as it has for you, distracts me from reading. However, I seem to have a handle on things now, because I have found myself actually finishing a few books this year.

    What do I keep putting off? The organizing and purging of all the many magazines I receive.

    Have a wonderful 4th!!


  13. I sure know what you mean with this post. We have been sorting through our books and finding ones to donate to our Friends of the Library yearly book sale. It is an overwhelming task! Hope you have a nice 4th of July!

  14. Hi Everyone! Thanks for all your comments, hugs, and Happy 4th wishes! I worked a little more in the loft this morning....and got a little bit more step at a time!

  15. Hi Becky,

    I don't remember either of the board games on the post above! I think that Sorry is my favorite of all time.

    I read everyday. I get up early and work hard until early afternoon and then when I sit down to rest, I read. I always have, but Stephen King gave me permission as he said in "On Writing", if you don't have time to read, you don't have time to write. So now, I read the story itself, but I try and figure out the how the writer put the book together and I STUDY it, as I enjoy it. I consider it as part of my work, but work that I love.

    I also read as we watch t.v., so that I am in the same room as Cary but I figure that most of the time what I'm reading is better than what I'm watching.

    Best of luck on getting your loft all clean and organized, I know you will be so happy when you are through. I'm collecting books and making my own library, so I don't get rid of them anymore. I love books ... old and new; any type, and the cheaper the better.

    I wish that I would do more sewing or card making, but I am lucky enough to really be doing what I want to do right now.

    Have a wonderful 4th!

  16. Hi Becky, nice to meet you. I have boxes of hardback books, collections. Some I'll re-read,others...? so far I've found other things to occupy my decluttering project, but those books are lurking in my peripheral vision. I can donate them to the local library or school, why do I find it so hard to just 'do it'? Marsha

  17. Hi Kathy and Marsha! Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a comment!


I'm still getting quite a few spam comments that are Anonymous, so I'm trying "User with Google Accounts." If anyone tries to comment that I know, and it won't let you, send me an email, okay? Thanks so much.