As I sit in my new space having a little free time tonight, I know I have done the right thing in reinventing my basement. I had to get rid of several things like: a bookshelf my dad made, three large boxes of books, and loads of old lesson plans. Some things were easy to pitch. Old lesson plans? There is no way I am going to need those again. I have enough plans with the new Common Core Standards to keep me up to date. The books were ones that I knew needed to be in the hands of kids, not in my basement unused. The bookshelf was tough, but knowing it went to my son who loves it as much as I do and knows the history behind it, made that easier to handle.
Now I have some of my favorite things around me. I am sitting at an old library table that used to sit on my grandparents' enclosed front porch. It is not refinished and beautiful because I want the character to live on and I want it to look just like it did for Grandpa and Grandma. I have my writing tools in one corner on the top and a file with old journals and a small dictionary on the other corner. There are regular desk-top things there too, like a stapler, paper clips (large and small), pens and pencils. I just feel comfortable sitting behind that table.
I have two large bookshelves sitting across from me. One is a three-shelf unit that was made by my dad. It is sturdy and holds many of the books I use for mentor text in writer's workshop. There are books by authors I love like Cynthia Ryland, Patricia Pollaco, and Donald Crews. The other bookshelf is tall and store bought. It is full of small tubs of books for young adult readers. Some I have read by other authors I like to read: Jacueline Woodson, Peg Kehret, and Jerry Spinelli. The bottom three shelves have nonfiction books, holiday books and poetry books. It just makes me feel safe seeing all my books right at my finger tips.
My favorite thing in this space doesn't usually belong in an office. But then I never said this was my office...it is my SPACE. In the northeast corner underneath the daylight window, is an overstuffed chair. It is maroon with two fluffy brown pillows nestled on the seat and a Clifford dog on the chair arm. The chair is a rocker/recliner. It has a box of books on each side of it with my dog books on one side and some adult fiction on the other side. This is my favorite because the chair belonged to my mother who left us 13 years ago. When I first got the chair I liked to sit in it because I could still smell her. That smell is now gone, but my memories are still there. I sit in the chair, read, and feel her presence all around me.
I just love my new space. I am so looking forward to spending lots and lots of time right here in my own space!