Yesterday I undertook the daunting task of taking down the book-mas tree. (The amusing task of creating it was documented in previous blogs). The room where we placed our book-mas tree, which we call the music and reading room (technically most people would call the living room), has two very large windows and yesterday was the first real snow of the season! So the soft layer of white made for a nice backdrop.

Like putting it up, it took a lot of hard work to take down a tree made of books. I had to remove decorations, lights and ribbon. (In case you haven’t read my blogs or as a reminder, this is what it looked like. It’s so pretty. I must say I’m a little sad to see it go.)


Then, I had to take down the books one by one. Like with the book-mas tree creation, here are so dos and don’ts of taking down you’re book-mas tree and re-shelving your bookshelves. (These might apply if you’re also just looking to re-organize your bookshelf!)


1.Don’t think anyone is going to help you, they won’t. Instead they’ll do things like this and hinder you by being goofy and distracting. (My husband calls this ‘downward facing daughter.’)


2. Don’t cram your bookshelf with other random stuff because “suddenly there is space” and now you have to clean out that bookshelf so you can put the books back where they were in the first place.

3. Don’t spend too much time trying to figure out the weird cookie fortune you find, for some reason, shoved in one of the books. (This really seems like terrible advice. You’ll only have friends if you’re rich and then don’t disagree with them or you’ll lose them? These don’t sound like very good friends to me.)


5. Don’t get discouraged and want to give up when you’re living room starts to look like this.


5. Don’t obsess too much over organizing to the point that you feel the need to create genres and sub-genres and stack the sub-genres so they make a pretty progression of colors. This will take a very long time and is a little weird, honestly.



1. Do put on some of your favorite music, because something like this deserves a good sound track. I chose a little Beatles, a little Shins and a little Black Keys.


2. Do stop and admire all the random things you find when you clean out a bookshelf – like old drawings and writings from your daughter when she was a very little girl.


3. Do take advantage of nature’s beauty aligning so perfectly with your life!


4. Do feel badly for your poor puppy who has again been displaced from her favorite window seat because she’s terrified of a stack of books. (Give her a toy to play with at least, although she will probably still stare longingly at her favorite spot.)

5. Do make sure to set aside all the books on your to-read list in a special place. This way you don’t have to try to remember in 2 weeks or 6 months exactly where you put them in your bookshelf after you’ve forgotten the exact, highly personalized genres and sub-genres you came up with, which all seemed perfectly logical at the time. But “books written in the modern era but set in a previous time in history centering on the trials and tribulations of a strong female character” may not be a sub-genre you remember later.


6. Do pat yourself on the back when you end up with a very beautifully organized shelf! (super #shelfie). (And also make sure to properly classify the book you wrote – The Travelers – into your personalized sub-genres – Paranormal, fantasy, romance, young adult fiction with feisty female characters.)


7. Do reward yourself afterwards by sitting down and snuggling up with the dog you kept from her spot (make sure to give her lots of pets and hugs to make up for the trauma) and read, read, read! (I actually got through half of Harry Potter book 1 yesterday. Yay!)