Thursday, May 15, 2008

Shelf full of stories!!


Whoever said 'moving houses is fun' should be shot..(that will mean me :( straight in the line of fire...) After so many moves, packing , unpacking....throwing away stuff, giving away stuff, hiding toys away(or else, you'll be titled the devil incarnate by your kids, what else?) so you can give it to some one needy...I think I know how much patience I need in the next couple of months..(please pass on all the patience peoples.... )
When you have children who are poles apart when it comes to their 'keep things neat' attitude, your life can be a roller coaster ride.

Well !! I'm now in the process of deciding how to, what to, where to , which to...throw or give away. I havent moved any bit in that direction. But this morning while I was looking around my house...I was petrified. Forget the kids, I have to handle the monster called 'ME' , my space and my umpteen books.

BOOKS ah!!!

You should know that people are divided into readers and non-readers (wow!! what a terribly new insight !! hehe) Readers are split into newspapers and magazines only ( like my husband) and book-readers( like me :D ) Book readers are now further sent into borrow thy book (not me :( ) and buy thy book (ME!!!!!!) .
Now since I've already gone ahead and done the needful of buying the book, I also happen to fall into the category that cares for books as a physical entity.. how much more heavy can that get :(. Those of us who believe that a house without books , is hardly distinguishable from a Sauna or a wigwam. That is why I worry so much about bookshelves and how they are filled.
Should shelves be adjustable, ( ideal, but time consuming) or should they just sit there...any way, no one gets to changing them regularly. (No wonder the set of World books always occupies the same position on any shelf in any house I move into ?? )
Should I keep them clean behind glass or open to eye, the hand and the air????

Should I keep one space entirely for all the books, or should I just populate all the rooms by spreading them out? Should I keep my children's books accordingly in their individual rooms or should I have a common space? What if I start a war because i've kept one reference book in the other room and they don't share?? Am I going to be held responsible for their fights??
I tried by jotting down where i'll need to put them in...and here goes my fanatical thoughts

1. There must be a shelf in the kitchen, for cookery books. (How else do I explain, why I go and buy them, 'cos they looked so beautiful with all the lovely colored prints of exotic dishes, I might never even make. They surely know how to lure me.... Those dairies where half the things written down in varied coloured pens,(with a few phone numbers too) 'cos I just can't let go of my mom's house tastes, but still end up cooking things that my mother-in-law cooked)



2. A small shelf (ok a huge sack maybe!) for those bathrooms. Ok this is tricky I know. Many people who read extensively in the loo ( my husband....yes, yes) , take in their reading (its mostly newspapers, or the magazines that I subscribe to :) ] and take them out again (more or less damp-smudged or folded out of recognition) Maybe I should ask publishers to start 'water proof series for bathroom reading'. But in the present day, clinical ,apartment bathrooms...i'll be glad if I can even hold the book a lil far apart from my nose.



3. The children's room. Civilzed habits need to be taught ;). We were always told not put the book down open on its face, not to make dog ears to mark out pages...must put the books back in their shelf ( my older son does it very religiously...sometimes to the point of frustration...) So should they be , appetizing to look at ( everything should be...if I need my junior-curly-poo to eat), easy to reach and of course well stocked ( their books get read very fast...have to still learn that art )

4. If the husband is lucky enough to have his own space...wherever it maybe..dressing room, bedside, wardrobe...god knows where,he will do reading ( I can sigh a relief here...I just have to go back to point 2. :D His set will most probably, no, surely ,have just some comics...all at the same time in one place, the last weeks newspaper, and yes, the occassional vogue magazine..he needs some eye candy too.




5.Passages and landings ( oh oh...I don't have them...no stairs inside! ) so one down....are for seldom-wanted but can't throw away books. Just because I got it as a consolation prize in my school days or his father gifted it to him when he went away on a trip for the first time...no matter that the book has been read so many time over even by the roaches that were present in some of the houses..







6.Read somewhere that the dining area also makes a good space for books...the dictionary ( so that we can correct our kids stat, and what else do I do with the millions of Oxford dictionaries???...)questions can be answered on the spot...but houses now being so huge that the distance from the dining to the farthest bookshelf in the bedroom could be just a few couple of feet away..I can strike that out, and moreover its always a race to finish meals anyway.



It would be easy to multiply the list of dilemnas with which any normal bookish person faces. But at the end of it all, I know ,The more books are handled and used ( by loving though grubby hands ) the less dusting, artificial attention they need. Neglect a book and it wilts visibly. We all know what that means???



How about this????


But at the end of it all...I would want my house which says 'Come on in' and not 'All hope abandon, ye, who enter here'.

44 comments:

brocasarea said...

hmm...fist one to commment...:)

yeah regarding books u r right..till today my father has kept his study books in the house[although some of them cockroach eaten]...u just cant throw them away...and i agree with ur 5th point!!..:)
"he needs some eye candy"..lol...got it:D

Keshi said...

I hv loadsa books and they r in my garage now. Cant afford to make my home look like a library.

btw I absolutely HATE Moving. Done that too many times in my life I dun wanna ever MOVE my butt again!

Keshi.

vEENs said...

alright... u voice my concerns.....abt books and book shelf!!

i dnt have one!

i dnt know HOW TO PRESERVE my books!

hw to keep them clean.. with no or little dust!!

i wish there was a WAY!

reading in bathroom!! i do ;) wen i was a kid.. and mom wont allow e to read story books... and i wud be so engrossed... i will fake wanting to gto bathroom... and sit htere for an hour readin...which obviously mom knws... and scolds and WHAT NOT@

:D

Shruti said...

so books are ur biggest worry while shifting? Good lord.. if I ever have to do that I wonder how I'll manage.. But yeah.. in a new home, the first things to be arranged are books. And oh.. please dont keep them in open shelves.. open to hands and air.. its fine if they're only open to eyes!
And.. a bookshelf in each and everyroom.. including the bathroom.. aah.. cool :D

brocasarea said...

and thanks for adding me up!!..:))

brocasarea said...

linking u up!!...keep writing!

--xh-- said...

i belong to the 'buy thy books' cateogery and yeah, whn i have to move out of my home (the last 2 move was inside same compound, so it wa skidn fo easy) books will be a big worry. unfortunetely, my books stand open to air and hands... want to buy a book shelf one day... :(

Tys on Ice said...

i LOVE books...infact iam very possessive abt the books I own...my dream is to one day open a book cafe...one in which all the books displayed wud hve been read by me...i plan to make one of our room into a library cum den next month...

ahhhh..heaven

Suma said...

:) :) :)

who ever said shifting house was easy...

imgine me sitting here separated form my 2/3/4/10? cartons of books lying lonely in bangalore...

Prats said...

@Brocasarea :) Oh yes...candy poppers all over....but I understand your dad ...i'm like that and somehow feel my memories will fade if I give them away. Thanks for the link up...

@keshi oh lucky you, who have garages....apartment living has this as one of the disadvantages...hardly any storage space... :(

Prats said...

@veens...aaww veens...Books need to be taken care of...not major stuff...but at least dusting off those horrid fine dust.
Do u still fake the bathroom habit?? ;) oh yes..your mom would have seen that trick thru

Prats said...

@shruthi HUge one at that....each time I tell myself this time i'm gonna give away some...but whenever I look at the books, a memory will pull out of my mind...and there i'll be left mooning over them, and trudging along with all those cartons

Prats said...

@xh Thats a lovely thing to have....a chestful of books...but moving house with them ...yes can be agony...and making shelves to hold them even worse...

Prats said...

@tys...you too??? I'm possessive about my collection too...but seem to lend also easily....the 'can't say no' comes in handy then for the others... :( but i've gotten back all of them save a few.

Can I gatecrash into ur book cafe party please????
A separate room filled books...wow!! that'll be Nirvana. When you do that , put up pictures...i'll sit here and drool

Prats said...

@suma...I know what you mean...I have shelves load in my parents house too...convenient isn't it?? Now my dad's threatened to give them away...but I know he wont...cos he's as bad as me...

ceedy said...

and how about those heavy weight architectural history books or my calvin and hobbes entire set.....its freaking 23 pounds....

i guess we shld just stay in a library...it will be easier....and goto eat out instead of read....

and after all this reading you get so confused that you need self help books :)

Prats said...

@ceedy....bang on!!!! shift to the library, yes....the best solution. lol....There are tmies when I actually consider making those History books, the base of a centre table!!! its so perfect in balance and weight...what say??

And you have the collection of my Hero...calvin...aawww, ...If you can't make space for the 23 pound...ship them here....I'll move my furniture for them..if needed ;)

ceedy said...

Hahah

I used to teach History at college here as a Teaching Assistant - so have all the big books one can think of given to me by college....that alone can weigh somewhere 50 pounds....

and yes I have C&H complete collection....all 10 yrs bound together
http://www.google.com/products?hl=en&resnum=0&q=calvin+and+hobbes+complete&um=1&ie=UTF-8

the problem with it is if I have to get it to India....I have to choose between one luggage and calvin....cause of baggage restrictions...and you can guess what I will choose :)

Prats said...

@ceedy...I hope you live on the lower floors....with all that weight, you could be dangerous...lol

But I love those damn History books even though its been ages since I finished with them...

Suma said...

prats...actually that idea of making your history books the base for a centre table is fabulous....a perfect conversation piece...

:)

Sumana said...

Yup Bathroom waterproof books. Good one. I have the same concern with toys. Toys toys everywhere not a place to sit. So are you moving somewhere???

Sachin said...

Hey, me to belong to the "buy the book" type.........

never had a experience of moving house, but i guess it isn't fun.....

Pri said...

whoaa!! moving must be a big headache especially for someone as systematic as you! :D...
my moms like that..so i know how it is...*rolling eyes*..
me!! no wayss...il'l just keep everything in one huge pile and then start digging up the mountain incase i need something...sigh!

Siri said...

Ah. Points to ponder I say!
I am not all that noble. I like to show my books off. The two shelves in the living room are currently full to the last shelf.
I have a special shelf for the latest books bought. They call out to me from there and cuss at me for not paying them enough attention. When I go visiting people and have nothing to do, I survey their bookshelves and form opinions about them.

I think I saw a D.H Lawrence's Lady Chatterley's Lover in the living room of some 65 year old ajji's house two weeks ago. Heheheh! Fool proof personality profiling, no?

What books do your bookshelves have?

Beauty and the BEast said...

Over the years I have collected loads and loads of books.. when I was to leave the country for a year or so odd, my parents very religiously donated them to a library, I was torn.. it was like someone taking a priced collection from a connoisseur.

I started all over again..and then I decided that for those whom books held no substantial value whatsoever, they had to look appealing. Hence, came the shelves and the very elegant arrangement of books upon them.

Now everybody looks at them and says its such a nice collection, but nobody once says, I should give them away :)

Ziah said...

dude! u are the goddess of unpacking!!

***bows to thee***

♥bμşγ-ŵŗϊŧēŕ♥ said...

being a kid still is extremely advantageous eh? mums get to worry bout it all. :P

lol, seriously, am one of those who likes keepin a lotta books too. keep the already-read books in carton boxes, easy to move.. IF!

thanks for droppin by my blog. :)

Compassion Unlimitted said...

hmm..everyime I plan to I give up,simply because I know it will be impossible for me even to identify the junk!1 so I give up.
as far as books ,I have no problem,its been ages since i ever read anything..advantages come in many forms you see
bookworms like you and other blog friends here ,hats off
tc
cu

rantravereflect said...

no place in my house for the most knowledgeable:me, where would there be space for books ;)

well,
i guess ya got to read, become highly well- read, use that to earn quick, big bucks, get a biggg house, get ya personal library, n stock n sock ya books /movies there :)

ps:
hate shifting, whenever tat happens, i always get busy: have an important(cooked up) two-day official trip/ some important business deal that needs all my time/i'm so terricbly sick that i need to be in bed alll the time n when they move the bed, they need to move it with me in it- if teh movers n packers man is cute, maybe he can jump in with me ;););)

Prats said...

@suma...hey, yes. And then for achatterbox like me...total madness....

@sumana...that waterproof thing is really going to be great...esp for newspapers....cos when they get wet...they sit with ears dropping like dog ears....yes moving house....soon...

Prats said...

@sachin....For me moving has always been fun....new place, new experience....

@pri, and does the mountain go toppling down???? I remember some of my friends were like that...
and for me as long as the books and they stuff find their rightful place...I dont mind moving millions of times...

Prats said...

@siri **I think I saw a D.H Lawrence's Lady Chatterley's Lover in the living room of some 65 year old ajji's house ..........**

Oh yes...much better than getting them do those personality tests...I do that too many times...observe the books and try to do people analysing...
My bookshelves overflow with all kinds, from kiddy stuff, comics, classics, mills and boons, and most of the must buy bestsellers.....all kinds....spiritual too...and sometimes self help books...though i just read and let it stay there

Prats said...

@beauty and the beast...oh.....That would have killed me stat...

But please don't give them away....its so difficult to find them again when you want them..

Prats said...

@ziah heheh and you're too generous...all settled?

@busywriter...I was so possessive even before I got married and had the whole responsibilty on my head....but even then I would harass my parents with this book safekeeping stuff

@CU thanks and you're so mad......but sometimes I feel I wish I could stick to E-stuff...then no books no shelves no trouble....

Prats said...

@rantravereflect...oh yes...until I find oen room for all those stuff, i'll have to just settle for stuffing them into small nooks and corners...

but be careful...they may just take the bed off with you in it. to some junk sale ;)

Joy said...

I loved the chair with books around :) Do you have one?

Ps said...

I agree with you totally that a house should reflect what YOU love--even my place is full of books.
After hearing about Ink hert i told my kids that a book's spine breaks if it is kept open face down.(as shown in the pic you posted)That struck a chord and they never do it.

ceedy said...

Found smg interesting fella architect

http://www.flixxy.com/dubai-dynamic-architecture.htm

its a bit slow at the start...but worth the watch

ceedy

Aarthi said...

Hey..I hav experienced it too...but it was only me and mum who felt it was too hectic(coz it was only us who were doing the whole shifting, packing n unpacking business)n dad liked it..coz he always prefers a change...huh..!!!

Sumana said...

Must be busy i guess with the move, no new posts???

keith hillman said...

I wish I could throw books away - I'd have so much more space. I used to lend my books out, but not anymore. They either came back soiled or not come back at all! I'm surrounded by the things - creeping ever closer to me. But I love them all the same!

Prats said...

@joy...oh no...I really wish, but though it looks convenient to have books around like that, it looks a little weird , doesn't it??

@ps You are so right....books are the reflection of the owner...

@ceedy...hey thanks for that link....It was a great one out there....

Prats said...

@aarthi...hehehe...I know what you mean...its these moms who always stress out...but i'm sure its fun too

@sumana...busy yes, a lil bit with the vacations and kids at home...and a bit with the move too...

Prats said...

@keith...I think of giving away too, many times, but then there is that oen string inside that pulls it the other way... :(
I've had mishaps with lending too...once a friend who borrowed one of my expensive books, returned it back as a 'roadside second hand book', and her explanation was her son scribbled on my book so....
I was aghast...so no more lending books to her