Tuesday, December 29, 2009

i'm spending this week cleaning out drawers, reorganizing closets, throwing away things that we've been keeping out of habit for a decade. all the things that are keeping our house from functioning smoothly. i draw no inspiration from tv shows that make heros out of nazi organizers, or that take rooms and strip them into vacuous lifeless boxes full of color coordinated department store crap. i draw inspiration from my own home. i love my home. i just need to get rid of the stuff i don't use, need or love. my wall of books in the dining room is perfection for me. if i ever try to over-organize this, something has gone terribly wrong in my brain. this is the top half of my wall of books. the bottom section is 2 feet deep to hold all my large art books. books are the foundation of my life and our house is built around finding homes for them. one of my favorite book features is the built in bookshelf on one wall of our staircase. when we were restoring our 150 year old limestone house, i felt such excitement when i saw the inside of the walls, the lathe and plaster, the beams....i didn't want it all covered up again forever. so, on the staircase, we removed the top layer of plaster, exposing the joists and lathe & plaster of the other wall. in the several inches between we created shelves. i love glancing over my books every time i run up the stairs, and seeing 150 year old plaster oozing between the thin strips of wood holding it all in place.i have learned to shelve my books two layers deep, where i can. i have a fabulous old corner cupboard that i absconded from my parents garage. my father had kept his tools and gardening equipment in it for 30 years. but i thought it was much better suited to books. it's about 7 feet tall and full of books, 2 layers deep.i'm also firm in my belief that my books need to be surrounded with all the other curiousities that i find interesting. so they are at times haplessly thrown together. but it works for me. i need/want to see all the things around me that i love. in fact, several years ago, i decided to take the dors off our kitchen cupboards so i could see things better. i find if i don't see the things around me, i forget they are there. this is so much more manageable for me. but back to the books. there are so many. and i love each of them. this summer when i was moving studios i moved books with the wheelbarrow, loaded on a blanket to keep the remnants of dirt out of their pages. i still have the garage stacked high with the books i haven't moved. that will be a project for next summer. but the book room at chasing lightning bugs studio has enough beautiful piles that it is a perfect winter hideaway.and now back to organizing. and cleaning and preparing our house and our books for a new year.

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