I am someone who references different chapters of my life using my bookshelves. Each phase of my life has had its own bookshelf and, for someone whose books have been and remain a somewhat central feature, those different bookshelves stand out in my memory as kinds of landmarks in my personal history.
When I was homeschooled on a sailboat, I had a tiny bookshelf in the boat’s salon; it only fit about 5 books, so the titles rotated fairly regularly, but it was mine. In the house I lived in during high school, I was able to upgrade to a long, wooden bookshelf that was painted baby blue for some unknown reason. I liked this shelf because it had cubbies that I could use to organize books by genre. Over a decade later, I still remember which genres went in which cubbies, which probably says more about my compulsion to organize than it does about my love of books, but that’s not the point of this post. The first thing I purchased for my college dorm room after gleefully notifying the University of New Hampshire that I would be attending was a set of birch-colored Ikea shelves that were deep enough to fit textbooks as well as novels. Upon graduating, my first apartment featured a heavy wooden shelf that I found for free on Craigslist and that my mother kindly characterized as “hideous.” The list goes on and, despite my fascination with my own bookshelf lineage, I’ve probably already lost you.
This blog originated and has unfolded during my “living in an apartment in Danvers” phase of life, which was also my grad school phase. I have very much loved this phase, which, for me, is marked by the bookshelf I blogged about in this post, built for me by my husband, sister, and sister’s boyfriend for my birthday. This shelf housed my critical theory books, books on pedagogy, fave novels, and even some of my husband’s books, which was a new experience for me. I don’t usually share my shelf space.
The time has come, however, for a new chapter! I have graduated with my degrees, as evidenced by the enthusiastic picture to the left. I will be leading my own classroom this fall. We have left our tiny apartment and secured ourselves a tiny house in the woods. Accordingly, I have moved myself into a brandy new bookshelf to mark the transition. And so, without much additional fanfare, allow me to share a recent shelfie with you!
I hope that this next chapter will be as beautiful and full of colorful stories as its associated bookshelf!