Na Na pinches her pennies (aka frugal living)

Shh… don't tell anyone I'm poor. They all think I'm living frugal and green just like everyone these days. This is a blog about a senior citizen living a frugal life, on a fixed income, in a low income food desert, and passing along knowledge from lessons learned. Some she learned from her Grandma Mama many years ago and some learned only a few days ago.

Why do I keep it?

I had started packing STUFF to be put into storage until I move.  I was packing books.  I have lots of books. I believe I had enough to supply a small library. New books, old books, cook books, quilting books, crafting books, gardening books, canning books, art books, and self help books.  Well, ok, not enough to stock a library but I do have at least 300 and about 100 magazines.

I packed many (not all) into boxes.

Moving 2016 007

Diaper boxes hold a surprising number of books.  Gosh they sure were heavy.  I knew I would need someone to help me get them to the storage place.  I kept thinking about all those books.  When was the last time I actually opened some of them to read the contents?  Did I really need them all?

Moving 2016 016

The longer I thought about those boxes of books, and the other books stacked all over the place, the more I realized I don’t need all of them anymore.  I can let a great many of those books go to new homes.

Moving 2016 014

So, I unpacked those boxes.  Sorted the books into stacks of like subjects.  Quilt books with quilt books, cook books with cook books, and so forth.

Moving 2016 012

I spent an afternoon evaluating my book collection.  I asked myself a couple of questions when choosing what to keep and what to get rid of.  1) When was the last time I actually looked into the pages of this book?  2) Owning a book is sort of like holding onto the knowledge it contains.  But, do I really need to know the same things now that I did back in the 50’s?

I narrowed the book purge to just these boxes from the original diaper boxes.  These boxes are about the size of two packs of computer printer paper.  8 1/2″ by 11″ by 5″.  They are smaller than they appear in the photo.  No, I did not visit the post office to get these.  I save them when quilts are shipped to me to be quilted.  They are a very convenient size for storage and sometimes I use them to re-ship a finished quilt going home.

Moving 2016 013

One of these boxes holds my favorite cooking reference books.  I narrowed them down to just five.  I haven’t gone through all the quilting books yet.  Those will be harder to purge because I use them in my quilting business.  I’m going to do that later this week.

I had thought about selling some of the books but that would mean keeping them until sold which would also mean moving them.  I don’t want to bother with that so the books are being donated to the library for their next book sale.

 

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18 comments on “Why do I keep it?

  1. Kathleen
    April 18, 2016

    I did the same thing last year Anita…..well, I only saved maybe about 100 of my favorite books and put them directly in my trunk…the next day took them to the library…tried very hard not to think about them or go back through them again…..AND I DON’T MISS ONE OF THEM. Couldn’t tell you which ones I have up. I felt very light after that.
    Now when I go to buy a book I think”So I really want this book?” most of the time NOT.

    • Anita
      April 19, 2016

      I’m planning to do the same thing. I’m going to stay away from the next library book sale because I might be tempted to buy one of my own books back. I’ll make a money donation instead.

  2. Erica
    April 18, 2016

    Well done! I bet it feels freeing!

    • Anita
      April 19, 2016

      It sure does. I’m glad I did it.

  3. nancy lotzer
    April 18, 2016

    Ahhh…..so very difficult to say goodbye to book friends.

    • Anita
      April 19, 2016

      Yes, but I’m glad I did.

  4. Jane
    April 18, 2016

    It’s not easy giving away your books, is it? I’ve done two major book “declutterings;” one when I moved here almost 18 years ago & again this year.

    This one took me from three bookcases down to one, plus my 12 cookbooks. My son now has the two bookcases & I’m perfectly happy with my one, which is filled with mostly reference type books for the things I do & make. It’s quite freeing!

    I still gets lots of books and DVDs from the library, so not a hardship.

    • Anita
      April 19, 2016

      The area where I’m planning to move to is a short walk from the library. I’ll let them store the books and I’ll enjoy them.

  5. Randal Oulton
    April 18, 2016

    Good points. I add another consideration now… can I still see it to read it, lol! So many of the classics are now available for free on devices such as iPad etc, and you can *magnify* the text and read it backlit, oh what magic for eyes that have already had a lifetime of reading!

    • Anita
      April 19, 2016

      Ha ha ha, you are so right about that! I kept telling myself I need new glasses each time I picked up a book to read. I don’t have any electronic type reader but I do listen to books on CD A LOT. I’m sure glad the library has a good selection of those or I’d be buying those.

  6. Cynthia
    April 18, 2016

    I did the same thing when I moved a year ago, purged my lifetime book collection. Even though it was painful at the time, I have not missed one single book that I gave away! I can hardly believe it but it’s true. We did the same thing with our music collection as almost everything is available on line one way or the other.
    I feel so much lighter as we have purged many of our possessions and begun to live with a lot less things.

    • Anita
      April 19, 2016

      I seem to be behind everyone else in ridding myself of STUFF. I’m glad I’m catching up. Yes it does feel lighter here.

  7. mem37814m
    April 18, 2016

    Please share on how u make your liquid dish detergent last so long.. I use a sponge that seems to take less soap but not as frugal as u. thanks.

    • Anita
      April 19, 2016

      I don’t do anything special to make it last. It just does. Hmm… maybe I should write a post about it.

  8. mem37814m
    April 18, 2016

    I missed your post that u r moving.. May I ask- are u down sizing? I moved here 23 years ago as my retirement home. Now that I am 77 it is way too much to care for but I do not have it in me to move again…lol

    • Anita
      April 19, 2016

      Not exactly downsizing, I’m moving to get away from urban blight and high crime. I’m downsizing my STUFF so I won’t be bothered with it after a move to a safer area. See the post written on March 24th for the details.

  9. Jeanie in MO
    April 18, 2016

    Others will enjoy the books. I’ve been trying to purge books/magazines also to make room for my vintage sewing machines I seem to be collecting now a days. So giving up one thing for another. Don’t know how sensible that is. My kids might have me committed soon!!!

    • Anita
      April 19, 2016

      Giggle, if you lived close enough I’d give you another one for your collection. A very old portable with a wood carry case in need of loving care. I really don’t know what I’m gonna do with it.

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