Wednesday, June 20, 2012


My beloved custom built-in bookcases
After getting several quotes and with one quote left to go, I've most likely decided that I will do some sort of hybrid move. Rather than pay someone to pack up all my stuff and move it for me, the quickest and easiest route, we will do most of the packing and just hire someone to move it for us. The drawback is that it takes us longer to box everything up so it ends up being a headache living among a mountain of boxes and not having anything you need. The advantage is that the moving part gets done in one day. Because I elect not to maintain a large pickup truck and trailer for a once in eight year event, it would take me many dozens of trips spaced over a couple weeks probably to move myself and then I would still need to borrow a pickup and trailer to haul most of the bigger items anyway. So the premium I pay for hiring the moving part done is probably offset by the savings of not owning a truck or having to borrow/rent one from someone else. I'm okay with that especially since I consider my free time valuable.

So this past weekend, I drove to the local truck/equipment rental place which also sells boxes and bought a van load of boxes, some bubble wrap and other packaging supplies. They are really good about giving refunds for any packaging material you don't need so I tried to get more than I needed so that I only have to make two trips to the place. I started in on the easiest part of my life by packing up my library. Egads! I ended up with a dozen large boxes of books that way a ton each full of books. Most of them are reference books that I refer to from time to time and loan out to others from time to time. Others are my pile of books to read in the future that I have collected over the years. I love having a selection of books when it comes time to chose my next victim so that I never get tire of a particular genre.

Last night as I was packing up some of my books, it was kind of a bittersweet moment. Here I was emptying my custom built-in bookcases so that we could move to a house with none. Sure, I can and will someday build new built-in bookcases over there but I have a feeling that it may be quite awhile before I conquer the list of things-to-do-first which means that I will probably not see these books for quite some time. I derive great pleasure from looking over a huge bookcase full of books that I have read and another equal sized bookcase of books yet to read. Now those bookcases look so bare, empty and sad. About the only bright side to this whole affair is that like any completed project, there are things that I would do a bit differently and now I will have the opportunity to do just that. I can't wait.


kymber said...

those book-cases are gorgeous!!! if they were mine, i would find a way to take them with me! before we moved from the city i culled 200 books from my collection and gave them to the goodwill store - it was really, really hard to do! when we arrived here at the manor, we had some friends help us along with the 2 guys who drove the truck 1,000 miles across the country. i had packed 76 bankers boxes with books to bring here. after about box number 15, my friend Jimmy said "what the heck is in these boxes?!?!? it feels like books!!!" - so i told him it was books. then he said "there must be 40 more of these boxes on the truck!!!" - that's when i told him that i had packed 76 boxes of books. he groaned - bahahahaha!

it has taken months to finally unpack them and set them up in just the right way. i know exactly what you mean about missing seeing your books - i feel/felt the same way!

good luck with the move! your friend,

R. Sherman said...

Moving Rule 1: Books in small boxes. It's easier on the back.


Ed said...

Kymber - Thank you. I spent a couple weekends building those bookcases (and fireplace mantel) about seven years ago and I have loved them ever since. They were super easy to make so I'm guessing Jambaloney could easily handle making them. They are just cabinet grade plywood box construction with a solid wood face frame. I definitely mean to build some more of them at the new place.

R. Sherman - Addendum to Rule 1: Unless you hire someone to move said boxes in which case, you can use a larger box.

Ron said...

I've decided that every winter, I will tackle some sort of shelving project around the house. It sure is nice to get everything up and organized. And when you build your own, you can go right on up to the ceiling.

I've got 3 bookcases next to my bed, and boxes of books under the jacked up bed. Sometimes I just lay there looking at all the awesome books I've collected, and pondering which one will be next. That area is definitely a candidate for floor-to-ceiling custom bookshelves.

sage said...

Nice bookcases. A visit to the liquor store to get boxes which are perfect sized for books.

Vince said...

I have limited sympathy. Won't you have the unholy fun of plotting planning and building a newer and much improved version.
And now you'll have to erect for someone needing to climb to reach the top shelf, not yourself. But... I've always fancied a set of steps made of teak that ran on a rail under 12ft book shelves.

I have a bit of a hate against light rails in a dwelling house. But I expect you needed something with a bit of umph. Odd that they didn't built with a source of natural light in that area, what is it, about 18x20+.

geri said...

Tom would be so jealous of your leather couches! My husband also feels the same way about books in shelves but how I wish he would just limit it to the living room since our bedroom is too crowded as it is. Moving to a new house is exciting!

Ed said...

Ron - I think it impossible to have too many bookcases.

Sage - I've gone that route before and it takes a lot of time to collect all the boxes and time to get them all filled since they are different sizes and more time to stack them because of that too. So I just bought uniform sized boxes and did it all in one shot.

Vince - On the extreme right edge of the picture you can just see the edge of a curtain to a bank of windows about ten feet long. The entire room is probably 15x30 feet so the windows fill up about a third of the available side. It gets lots of light in there.

Geri - We saved up for many years and bought them on clearance. We like them with a kid because they are stain proof and easy to clean up spills and messes. My only gripe is that we should have gone with a darker color because they show dirt easily.

PhilippinesPhil said...

I can't count the number of times I've helped move people. In the military people move all the time, not just from base to base, sometimes from off base to onbase, or just from house to house. Usually the movee would provide food and drinks, about 20 of us would show up and we'd get the move done in one day. The worst moves were the guys who had nothing boxed and we'd have to do that too. The best ones were the pre-boxed, pre-broke down furniture, where all we had to do was load em up. Sometimes we also had to unload and put everything more or less in the correct rooms in the new house. I don't collect books anymore--too heavy and I don't know where in the world I plan on living from decade to decade. I have do have lots of em though, it just means they'll get thrown out or given away when I move someday..