Category Archives: Books

Today

DH is working on upgrading the electrical system on his motorcycle. He helped me with some of the leaf moving (rake, then relocate). Later today, we’re off to the storage to work on that.

There are probably more books here ready to be gotten rid of. I gave one  to a neighbor. Have another to ask a second neighbor about and the yard is tidier than it was. All good.

The fertilizer I used up (we’d had it for 2 years, why?) was rained on for the next two days. A lot of it went into the bulb beds, and the daffs. and other bulbs are shooting up green sprouts all over the place. Partly because it’s time, but partly because they got fertilized just as they were starting their spring push. The rain was a blessing for them.

So we need to buy more mulch for the bulb bed to keep out the weeds (grass), but the bulbs should spread out quite a bit this year because of the timely fertilizer and rain.

I’ve been working on the spring/summer food/garden plans,  Between the farm we belong to and the garden I grow (sometimes, didn’t last year) we are usually drowning in green stuff by June. I want a better plan for what comes in/when and what I intend to do with it this year! I’m about 25% done with this piece. Finished the initial data gather yesterday. Pulling it together.  There are 2 or so more data gathering steps before I can make an actual plan, but it should get there.

Off to the storage — ho!!!!

J

We took a file box full of books and a few besides to the market which has the book bin. Gone! I have gone through one box since we got home and have started the 2nd. There’s about 10 more books in a bag to be donated, wherever it is we go next that will take them.

Look Elsewhere

 

For years I recommended a book search engine to people who wanted to evaluate whatever books they had. Today I did a search there and noticed something, it was basically an amazon search engine. Not surprising, as Amazon bought the site a few years back.

It had been balanced. Most of it was Amazon, but you could still find things elsewhere. The major used book site was bought a few years back by Amazon too, so that’s there, but I stopped buying from them when Amazon bought them.

Sigh.

Sometimes I think I’ll be the last person in America who won’t buy things from or sell on Amazon. I don’t buy things at Walmart or use self-checkouts either. I’m just weird.

J

Flea Market was a Success

We got rid of stuff, made a little money, and donated a batch of things which didn’t sell afterwards.

That was Saturday. Sunday we rented a truck and moved about 1/2 the storage unit. Tomorrow I get to work on this some more. Oh joy.

Not surprisingly, We’re both tired! We figure we picked up, loaded truck with, picked up unloaded truck to dolly and then picked up and stacked in the storage about 600 lbs of books. When you figure that we moved those books at least 4 times pick up from old storage, put in truck, unload from truck to dolly (only had dollies on the receiving end, they aren’t ours) then unloaded dolly to stack in new storage.

Both of us said, “Never again!”

I was surprised. I thought there were only hardcover and large format paperbacks left, but no, there were boxes of rack-sized paperbacks and magazines too. So, I’m sure our dump will be the happy receiver of some of those, as well as a few local libraries. I have a few books here and there I’d like to find, as well as a few authors.

(The image is NOT my storage unit!)

storage unit

There’s some obvious mostly junk boxes. Those I’ve started to pull out (there’s 2 in the car) and I’ll go thru them tomorrow before I go work on some of the others. Hopefully, I can get through those fairly quickly. The plan is that my helper and I will move the remaining boxes of books tomorrow. Then I’ll work on the odds & ends. My goal is to be out of the old storage by the end of the week. We’ll see! The move tomorrow may not go as planned, or any other piece of it may not. . . .

J

4/22 note: Didn’t make that goal. Still working on this, sigh!

Luddite

Wanted to read a new book. My way of finding out if a book is worth the $ to buy it is to check it out of the library. This state has a great interlibrary service. Except my local, small library got computerized, I don’t (now) remember my user id (I could get that tomorrow) and we don’t have the necessary software to read books on my desktop computer. I don’t remember what the issue was, but DH didn’t want to load the reader software. I can’t read the book I “checked out” on my phone. So, I checked out an ebook, but can’t read it.

Just found 2 more books I wanted to look at. Solution? I’m going to bite the bullet and just buy them. This will make like 6 books I’ve bought in the past 2 months — for me, that’s nothing, but it’s irritating when I thought I wouldn’t have to buy anything at all.

Not that it’s a hardship to have books, it’s just that I already have so many and then I’ll have to get rid of that many more if I decide to keep these. And, I’m spoiled. I’m used to buying books wholesale, not retail. (Yes, I know, you have no sympathy — and why should you?)

stack-of-books

I’ll look into the problem again, but I don’t remember what DH’s issue was, only that he had one. It could have been a software update was needed first or he didn’t have time right then, but I think it was technical. Until that gets straightened around — I guess I’m stuck with paper and ink books!

Rumination on Aunt Sophronia

Who is Aunt Sophronia?

She’s a mythical character, the narrator, of a 19th century housekeeping book, the Complete Home by Mrs. Julia McNair Wright (McCurdy, 1879).

The book is one of the older “housewifery” books I own. In many ways, it’s amusing, but in others, it addresses things which might be so, but its perspective I don’t share. There are various and sundry points which it makes me ponder.

First of all, she is addressing a white, WASP audience, which is talked about as the only right way to live. I guess if you’re a person of color or other belief system, well, you were beyond reproach. In any case, the book was not written for a multicultural, multiethnic audience.

Secondly, this is from the era when they believed that airing was important. It is, but not the way it’s talked about. However, it was the science available to them at the time.

Third, it is also an era where WASP folk of any substance had servants.

With all that in mind, here is a quote:


“Practice economy as a Fine Art: make a duty and pleasure of it: it is the mortar where in you lay up  the walls of home; if it is lacking, or is poor in quality, the home building will crumble. Don’t be ashamed of economy: study it; consult about it; don’t confound it with meanness: economy is the nurse of liberality. Meanness is going into debt for luxury: is keeping behind-hand the wages our work-people have earned: is making a show on the street and withholding charity: is presenting cake & confections to our callers, and stinting the kind or quality of our servants’ food.”(p. 65)


Almost everything we own/do would be considered a luxury by the standard of the late 19th century I think. The statement “meanness is going into debt for luxury” seems appropriate. It’s normal now to live beyond our means, but how could we live differently in this culture? Have we been sold a bill of goods? Is keeping up with the Joneses, imaginary or not, the marketing tool of mass merchandising?

complete-home-cover-and-spine

Have I been a sucker my entire life? Maybe.

Without the ‘net, a car, etc. you’re pretty much going to be in poverty, wouldn’t you? Yes, there are ways around some of this: libraries and public transportation.

Frugality these days means paying off your house early or having no credit card debt. If, as the book suggests elsewhere, our job is to pass a home (without debt) and some money to the next generation, how would we live differently?

I have no children, so my next generation is my husband’s nieces. My brother’s child has two working parents and is an adult, married woman, not needing (or wanting) anything from us. So — what would I change and should I?

I’m not sure, but it is an interesting thought experiment.

 

Chipping Away at the Monolith

What I did today was mundane, but necessary chores: I had a health thing checked and my helper and I got through the 4 loads of laundry in the laundry room. I mailed 3 pieces which have been sitting here to be mailed, for months. A batch of collectible books has  been put in sleeves, ready for putting into a booth.

Necessary, but not interesting. All are steps towards the “new me.” The test thing I’ve been avoiding for months. The laundry I’ve been kidding myself for a week (more?) that I’d get it all done. It’s done, now. We went to a laundromat and just got it done. The books were uncovered two weeks ago, and I’ve been telling myself I’d get to them ever since.

I need to put the laundry away, price the books and get them out for sale.

I also need to go make dinner.

Have a great weekend everyone!

J

For Those Who’re Interested

This blog isn’t going away. It will however, be modified a good deal.

The memoir, of the same name as this blog now has a domain name of its own (there’s nothing there right now). To purchase the book, you’ll need to go to http://www.teacupofwater.com . I’ll post a notice here when the book is available and when the domain is actually live.

In the meantime, if you’re someone who said they wanted to be a beta reader, please contact me. A comment here will be fine. I won’t publish these, but will keep the data private. I need your contact info (email will work to start) and then whether you want an e formatted copy or a dead tree copy. Sorry, no dead tree copies out of the US, too expensive to mail!

If you know me IRL, drop me a note on FB or email and we’ll get you on the appropriate list!

Just so you know, my “target date” for releasing the beta copies is JUNE, 2016 . It may not be a very long book, but there’s still a lot of work involved in getting it ready!

J