It's no secret to anyone who knows me that I have a very deep love affair with books!
|I love to display my books along with favorite knick-knacks on book shelves :*)|
Stacked near my morning "quiet-time" chair
Hiding in boxes in closets
Lurking behind closed cabinet doors
I pick them up at yard sales, clearance sales, Goodwill, hand-me-downs from others, etc. It's real hard for me to say no to a book, especially a book on sale :) Cleaning up these piles is one of my SIMPLIFY objectives this year, so it's only natural that I decided to join Sarah Did It's Bibliophile Files linky party each month :) Sarah challenged us to choose our own challenge, which was great because I knew exactly what I needed to do. My plan is to go through these piles and choose at least 10 books each month to read through enough that I can decide whether it is a keeper or not, and then either put it on a shelf or dispose of it. Hopefully there will be no more piles of "To Be Read" books by the end of the year!
Note - long story coming up!!!
Books have always been a part of the major times in my life. And I thought it might be fun to occasionally share some of the stories of my life as I link up each month. So if you'd like to hear a personal story, I'm about to share one from my childhood. If not, however, this is your cue to drop to the bottom, leave a sweet comment to let me know you visited and go on your merry way - I promise I won't be offended! =^..^=
I am told I have always loved books, and indeed some of my favorite memories are of the books I loved as a child....
My first memory of a special book was Maybelle the Goat (which may or may not be correct since I haven't been able to find one anywhere since). I was six years old and had just been plucked from the city of Baltimore and plopped down in the wilds of a farm in North Carolina. A new stepdaddy, a new baby half-brother, and a half-sister on the way. A strange new world to live in indeed, and my young life had changed BIG TIME!
There were two old country houses on the farm, a tiny, white two-room box for us - so small they had to build a bathroom on, and a much older, huge ramshackle red one for my stepfather's parents. They were old country farming people, hairless (not her - she had a lovely bun!) and toothless, and they smelled funny - totally foreign to this little city girl, and even a little scary! Grandpa had a big knot on his bald forehead and steely blue eyes that cut right through me. Grandma seemed nice enough, but she cooked strange food I had never heard of before, and she even chewed and spit "tobacky" as she called it :) She was nothing like my beloved Granny I had left behind in Baltimore!!!
The "new" homeplace was also nothing like what I was used to! Huge, wonderful pecan trees lining the long, dirt drive - perfect for climbing and sitting in with a good book once I figured out how to get past the trunk - and I can still remember the joy of picking the nuts up off the ground, cracking those hard shells which stained my fingers, and eating the delicious meats inside....a dark, scary-looking woods in back with swamps abounding and the threat of snakes.....even darker, scarier, smelly buildings that housed huge creatures called cows that my mother was expected to procure our milk from each morning, and the new smells of hay and corn and dung... riding the big yellow bus to and from school each day for what seemed like hours..... and everywhere the white cotton fields and wide open spaces of the countryside .... culture shock for sure! I remember feeling lonely and lost, without a friend in the world.
But not for long..... I had noticed a calico cat around the farm and called to it several times, but it was too wary of me and wouldn't come near no matter how hard I tried. But then one day, I was sitting on the back steps of our little house, reading from the aforementioned Maybelle book from my school library, totally unaware that she had come near. Suddenly, lo and behold that little cat just walked right up to me and began purring and rubbing up against me! So began my life-long love affair with cats!!! Of course I named her Maybelle!
From that day on, Maybelle was my best friend, all through my childhood. Every day when I came home from school, the first thing I did was go outside and call for Maybelle, and she always came running. I was horrified when I came home one day to find that her beautiful long tail had become a 3-inch bloody stump! Come to find out, my stepfather's father had chopped her tail off because he said it would make her catch more mice! Yes, seems my instincts were right and there was a reason I was scared of him! I suppose I should just be grateful he didn't chop off her head, right? Years later I learned that he had "disposed" of each litter of kittens when they were found. I'm glad I didn't know that as a child.
Tail or no tail, Maybelle lived for many years and made my childhood a happier one. I think of her often with such fond memories :) She was the first of many wonderful long-lasting relationships I have had with some special cats, and many are the cats that have graced my lap during long, lovely reading sessions! I look forward to spending quite a while visiting some of my little friends on the other side of the Rainbow Bridge when I finally go to Heaven :*)
At the next linky party I'll share the 10 books I reviewed this month, whether or not I kept them, and why. And if I've read a good book that month, I'll be sure to share a short review with you too!
Hope you'll come along for the journey!!!
Hugs & Blessings