The Importance of Book Shelves

You can tell a lot about a person’s character based on the books on their shelf and the way they are displayed. For example:

  1. Color coded – This person is not to be trusted. At all. Ever.
  2. Alphabetized – Proceed with caution.
  3. Categorized by genre – Be cautiously optimistic.
  4. Alphabetized by genre – Trust this person. Completely.
  5. Arranged by preference –  You have just discovered your soul mate or your worst enemy.

Because of this, when I am getting ready for people to come over to my house, the bookshelf is first on my cleaning list. If your first thought here is that bookshelves don’t belong on the “get your house clean” list, then you might want to stop reading, this next part will be painful for you.

I’ll be honest, my “get your house clean” list goes something like this:

  1. Ignore the list. (This step is very important.)
  2. Reorganize the bookshelf. For days.
  3. Throw shoes in the least full closet.
  4. Shove dirty laundry into the washing machine and dryer. (This explains my daughter’s stained shirt this morning, it was in the dryer…that means clean, right? My own system is failing me.)
  5. Everything else goes in my bedroom. Door is closed. House is clean.

Again, the “clean your house” blog…not mine!  My blog is the one that says, if the bookshelf is sorted, the house is clean despite the rouge Lego or Shopkin you may happen to step on.

Here is my kids’ communal bookshelf:


I fought the urge to re-do the shelf for the picture.  Apparently someone needs to visit my house so I can “clean”.

Top Shelf – My growing collection of future reads for the older kids.

Shelf #1 – Newberry Award winners and classics.


Shelf #2 – Classics continued and a few series that need to stay out of reach from the littlest hands.


Shelf #3 – Science, Dr. Suess, Disney, and some of my favorite picture books.


Shelf #4 – The kids’ favorite picture books and paper back books (I give up with sorting these!).


Shelf #5 – The younger kids’ shelf. I have no idea!




I like having a bookshelf just for the kids books because I want them to learn early on to take care of the books and treat them carefully. (This is a good theory, I am not so sure if it’s actually working!) One of the chores given to one kid each week is “librarian”. They are in charge of putting the books back in the shelves and keeping it usable. (Again with theories.)

Books are precious and meant to be read. They are also meant to be displayed for every judging eye.


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