Accumulation of books…

I have always enjoyed reading, and love absorbing and learning each word and story I can.

When I was younger, I used to spend entire afternoons reading by our coal stove, and about once a month, I would walk into the bookstore to pick up a few more for my collection. I just loved seeing the books pile up, and knowing that I had read each and every one of them.

I always dreamt that if I owned a house someday, it would have a library of books. From one wall to another there’d be a giant bookshelf full of stories and lessons—like in the movie, The Beauty and the Beast.

But over the years my leisure time has become shorter and shorter, making it more difficult to pick up a book. I always have the intention to read before I go to bed, but I never do quite get the book off of my nightstand before my eyes close shut.

As I moved back and forth each year from NY to Ohio for college, I began noticing the amount of books I was accumulating. And packing those books into boxes and loading them into the car and up three flights of stairs made me reconsider my desire to own so many books.

What’s the point of shuffling around dozens of boxes of books everywhere you move? What’s the point of owning so many if you aren’t picking them up and reading them each day?

Since my last semester at college, I made a conscious effort not to buy anymore books. Okay, sure a few slipped in here or there, but I did cut back significantly…

Is there any value in owning a paper book these days?

I never thought I’d want to read books on a tablet, but I have finally caved—and so far I am happy with my decision.

I also decided I’m going to downsize my collection of books as I read through them.

There are, of course, a few books that will always remain with me. Books that were given to me as gifts from people I care about, books that were signed and personalized to me…

But the rest of my books? The rest of my books will be given away—to people I meet who I think will enjoy them as well. Books aren’t meant to be written and then sealed up between two bookends: They are written to be shared and passed along to others. And I hope they do the same…

Today, in brief summary: After a staff meeting with VolCom, I shadowed a tour Jake gave to newer La Puente staff who never received an orientation. It was really eye-opening to hear some of the statistics he mentioned. In the afternoon I worked with Jeff on the micro-enterprises. Some days you make a lot of progress you can see on paper, and others you make a lot of progress envisioning and brainstorming. Today was a brainstorming day. We worked on coming up with job titles and what my duties might be and did some more research. Jeff told me about the Social Enterprise program Harvard has, and it looks phenomenal  They require their students to complete a summer fellowship of their choice, and I would love it if we could get one or two of them here. But first, we need to get a website put together, with words, photography and multimedia content. After work, we had a community night dinner at a board member, Alison Kitchen’s home. It’s always nice when we get everyone together for a few hours, since we often don’t always cross paths with other volunteers at our jobs. She lives on a beautiful 160 acre farm about ten miles outside of town, in the heart of the Valley. It was so spectacular to look up at the sky tonight and see all of the stars as we drove home. I can’t wait to go stargazing in my hammock this summer.

That’s all for now. Good night, all.

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