Thursday, January 22, 2009

Time Well Spent

Reading time is definitely one of the finer things in life in our home. We all love to read, even those of us who don't know how to read yet.

Eric and I spent many of our dating days at our favorite coffee house, curled up with books and coffee in front of the fire place. Now most of our reading time is in bed as we drift off to sleep, but we still cherish that time together.

Isabelle has become a book fiend. She spends an average of at least 3 hours a night reading before we insist she turn off her lights. She reads during the day and in the car. This is the stack of books next to her bed.
Whenever Isabelle pulls out a book and sits down to read, all of the the other have to get in on the action too.Books pop up in the most unusual places. Our bookshelves are sparse, but the number of books is not, so we store them wherever we can. And it's probably a good thing we don't have more bookshelves, because they never stay organized. Eric and I really try, but the kids just can't help themselves.Eric and I are looking forward to the days when the whole family will curl up together on the couch with our books. Reading together...definitely a finer thing!

Here are a few frugal tips on stocking the family library:

  1. For Eric, Isabelle and myself, books are always the first thing to fill up our gift lists. We keep a running list of books we'd like to own and whenever someone needs a gift idea, we suggest one of those books.
  2. We rarely buy a book unless we've read it from the library first. All of us love to re-read books, so when we find a book we really love, we know it might be a worthwhile purchase at some point.
  3. We scour thrift store shelves for books. Our local Salvation Army sells most of their books for $3 or less, and most of the paperbacks are $.50-$1.00 at most. It may take some digging, but it is so worthwhile.
  4. Like thrift stores, used book sales at the library are a wonderful resource if you're willing to spend the time digging.
  5. Unfortunately we do not have any used book stores in our area, but whenever we do come across one, we try to stop in. A lot of used book stores have a trade-in program where you can sell them books you no longer want in return for a store credit to buy some more books.
  6. Garage sales are a wonderful resource for books for our little kids.
Stop by Biblical Womanhood for more Frugal Friday.

And make sure you stop by Amy's Finer Things where my friend Amy is starting a new weekly meme; "Finer Things Friday." Share something you consider a finer thing in life and link up!


Hannah 11:16 PM  

Great tips for building up a home library. For birthdays and Christmas we usually suggest books for our kiddos.

ThereO 12:24 AM  

I am addicted to paperbackswap. You mentioned that you don't have a used bookstore so you might want to check it out if you haven't already. I actually go there BEFORE the used bookstore...LOL!

Jennifer 7:34 AM  

We love books too! When we moved, we had thousands of books to move too. You know how thin kids books can be. I am slowly starting to get rid of some of the more childish kids books, but I really have a hard time getting rid of any book at all. I just love them.

A happy heart at home 7:52 AM  

We're a family of readers, too. Lots of books in the house and regular trips to the library. Ask your library if they have an interlibrary loan program. I can go online and see what books are available throughout our state. Borrowing them from our local library is free (no postage fees because we're on their driving route). I've used this service many times.

The pic with all the children and their books is sweet! We spent many hours reading to our girls, who are now (almost) 32, 19, and 15. Thanks for bringing back happy memories.


Sherry 9:45 AM  

I love reading time. We have a quiet reading time in the afternoon where we read our own books. At night, we have a family reading time and read a chapter from a book presently Voyage of the Dawn Treader from the Chronicles of Narnia and then a devotional/Bible reading. :D

Tammie 10:05 AM  

i LOVED this post. we have so many books. . .and they are everywhere also.

JessieLeigh 10:39 AM  

We, too, are a family of readers and I think it's such a blessing!

We've been very fortunate in that my mom is an elementary school librarian and, as such, she is familiar with some fabulous titles and also tends to get great warehouse discounts.

Definitely a frugal past-time and a finer thing in life!

chiara 11:50 AM  

Woooow... those are pretty thick books :) Uhm, does your library have a used book section? Our city library has a used book section and paperbacks at $0.50. I think hard covers are $1.00 :)

petersonclan 8:50 PM  

You didn't mention Paperback Swap, did you? It's a great source of inexpensive books.

Let them know petersonclan sent you, and I'll get a free book, too!

Annie 9:12 PM  

I highly recommend for our family. I love this service!!

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