Weeding with a “Purpose”….???

Well, I do not know how you feel about weeding, but I have never seemed to find the “right” time or motivation to do this burdensome job in my library. I have been here for 31 years and have weeded outdated science materials, but never did the extensive job that needed to be done. I always had plenty of shelf space, so why bother ….right???
So when I found out I was actually going to move to a space that was smaller, I started to dread the idea that I was actually being forced to do the job I disliked the most. At first, it was actually fun….getting rid of all the books that were falling apart, had faded pages and all those editions that were not attractive at all. Some of the books actually had dust and mold on them….YIKES!!!
Then the next round was to look for duplicate copies to add to some of the teacher’s libraries. When I still had not discarded enough volumes other teachers tried to help me with this process. They would pull out piles of books they felt could be withdrawn and I would look at what they pulled to make the final decision. I discarded about 25% of what they felt should be taken from the collection. When they were not looking, I simply reshelved the books back with a proud smile, since I knew I was “in charge” of their destiny. So I kept doing this and wondering how I was going to make room for the move to the smaller space….I was actually praying for “a miracle”. Well, God did indeed help me with this challenge…I found out that my school was eagerly partnering with a school in Panama City that lost their library in the recent hurricane. Wow….talk about a motivation to weed now….I grabbed 2 carts and headed for the shelves. I found all those books I had “hidden” and pulled all those second copies….After all, I did have ALL these books and kept thinking about the number of children that had LOST their entire library. All I kept thinking about were these words that I read from that school,”Our library and art building have been destroyed”. There was no stopping me now…and 25 boxes of books later, I was smiling for an entirely different reason. I was actually going to help students I did not even know still enjoy books….what a beautiful feeing!! Please refer to the link below:
http://blog.shorecrest.org/hurricane-michael-donations

I also felt good when I looked at my shelves. The books were not as crowded and they looked brighter and more organized. It seems easier to find books now,too.
Yesterday, a volunteer that was helping shelf books in the library told me how nice it is for him to actually shelf the books and not have to shift books everytime to make room. My words of advice, are not to be like me and wait for a hurricane to hit….take some time every month to look at your shelves and pull some that could make another person’s life richer….After all if your shelves are full….there is no room for new books. And I do not know about you…but I LOVE TO SHOP!! Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah!

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