* Cicero is quoted as saying, “A home without books is a body with soul.” I agree with that, which is why I feel qualified to add, “And a home with books is a home with books everywhere.” If you’re a book person, there’s a strong chance your kids are, too, and that, of course, means even more books. What to do with all those books? You can stack them. You can put them on shelves. You can store them out of site. And when you’re done, you can share them. You can donate them. You can put them away somewhere. What you don’t want to do is be constantly moving them from here to there, and tripping over them on the stairs. And if a number of them are library books (which makes good senses–and saves lots of cents), you want to be sure you’re not continually losing them. Let’s take a look at ways to smartly and stylishly incorporate your book habits into your home. For those of you just ankle-deep into book obsession, something like this storage tower might do the trick. I like this better than simply stacking books on top of each other because this way you can at least get the the books on the bottom without toppling the whole thing. This can also be tucked into the corner of a room (perhaps every room). And if you’re lucky enough to have a detail-oriented child, he or she may enjoy taking charge of keeping these stacks neat and “in size order.”
*More like knee-deep in books? Then, you probably want to dedicate a bookcase to the cause. But why go simple and boring when you can make a fun design statement? I love, love, love, this Japanese designer’s “book house” for a child’s bedroom. The bed is actually inside the book house. You can see how to build it here.
* Up to your ears in books? Well, that’s gonna’ require the rolling ladder. (Haven’t you always wanted the rolling ladder?) See lots more bookcase solutions at this blog.
* Not so neat with your books? You may want to consider hiding them. I really like this curtain idea–simply pull it across and hide the mess. (I found the photo on a site named Stagetecture.) Wait–can I do that everywhere?
* Of course, getting books from the library reduces the number you have permanently in your home, but really, really try to stay on top of this or it will become another problem in your life, and you don’t need that. Organized moms whom I see and mostly avoid (even though I admire them) do not have to continually lay out cash for late fees! These moms know that having a set place for library books is the only way to do it. Here’s one idea: a library cabinet and bag. Seems to work for this mom.
* Kids grown, books done, and you’re ready to move on? Donate, donate, donate. Give your books to friends, donate to your public library, and find a book drop near you that benefits those in need. I like Better World Books, currently only in Georgia and Indiana but spreading quickly! You can purchase from Better World Books from anywhere (but, wait, then you have more books again–how does that keep happening?). Profits from the sale of books donated benefit local communities and communities around the world (photo from my local community). Better World Books calls itself the online bookstore with a soul. And that brings us back to Cicero, and the fact, that, let’s face it, you like a home with books. The best solution? Build a bookcase. Or two. Or ten.
Find a handyman, woodworker, personal organizer, or interior decorator on Kudzu to help you find homes for those books as part of your decor. And then spend less time organizing, and more time, well, you know, reading.