On my nightstand.

My nightstand just might be the most cluttered piece of furniture on the planet and I say this with absolute confidence.  On this surface space that measures a measly 12″ by 10,”  I manage to cram a lot of necessary items on it.

I have a lamp, hand lotion, a bunch of letters from people I love that make me happy, my glasses and their case (but somehow never the glasses in the case), a water bottle (because dehydration is important even at night), a Mother’s Day present from my son of a small vase stuffed with fake flowers, a package of tissue for nose emergencies, a small flashlight, a picture my youngest child drew, loose buttons from countless sweaters, a few paperclips, a safety pin, and anywhere from 2 to 7 books.

My bedroom will never be on the HGTV channel as an example of what to do with your nightstand.  I’m pretty sure I can live with that.

Books are a nightstand essential, in my opinion.  I have three categories of books next to my bed:  books I know I should read but can’t seem to muster up the energy to do so (these are on the bottom of the stack), books I have started but can’t seem to finish for some reason or another (these go in the middle), and books I simply can’t put down and they’re only left on my nightstand because I sadly can’t devote my entire life to reading (obviously, these are on the top.)

For example, right at this moment on my nightstand at the bottom of the pile is a history of the Relief Society (which is the women’s organization of my church.)  I want to read it, I know I should read it, and yet…. I don’t.  Shame.  So much shame.

In the middle of the pile is a library book called The Winter Witch, by Paula Brackston.  This book is utterly romantic.  Set in historic Wales (seriously Welsh language= uber romance), it is filled with sexual tension, fascinating characters, and witchcraft.  What is not to love with a combination like that?  I devoured the first half of this novel.  But now it languishes in nightstand limbo because I can tell a sad part of the book is coming and I’m just not emotionally equipped to deal with that right now.  But make no mistake, once I bolster enough courage I’m going to finish the rest of it.  Until then, I keep renewing it from the library.

Another book in nightstand limbo is The Beautiful Mystery, by Louise Penny.  It is the eighth book in the Chief Inspector Armand Gamache detective series, which I love, love, love with all my heart.  But I just know I’m going to want to read the ninth book immediately afterwards and I’m still 38 on the waiting list for it at the library.  So until the sequel is closer to being in my grasp, I’m not even going to start it.  My will is iron.  I shall not falter in my determination.  I’m almost positive.

Who am I kidding?  I have no iron will when it comes to reading.  The Beautiful Mystery is probably going to reach the I-can’t-put-it-down top tier of the nightstand any day now.

At this moment, the top of the book pile is taken by Gail Carriger’s second installment of her Finishing School series.  Yes, Curtsies & Conspiracies is a Young Adult book.  Yes, it is also a steampunk novel.  Both of which should make you run out and get this book from your local library ASAP.  (A brief review of the first book in the series can be found here.)

That’s how I organize my nightstand books, Gentle Reader.  What system do you use?

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11 Responses to On my nightstand.

  1. I think I even have less of a system than you regarding books. I have several piled on my nightstand, too. More are on top of a bookshelf, others are on a designated place on the counter, and still more are sensibly stowed in our bookshelves.

    Have you ever read The Penderwicks? It’s also a YA book, but it’s wonderful. I just finished re-reading the first and the second, and I got the third from the library this weekend. You should check it out if you haven’t already read it!

    • I loved the Penderwicks! And the third one made me cry. I had to buy them because I loved them so much. Have you read The Sisters Grimm series? Your oldest girl would love them. It’s geared toward 8-13 year olds.

      • This will be my first time reading the third Penderwicks book, so I’m so eager to dig in! (I’ll brace myself for tears.) No, I haven’t read the Sisters Grimm series yet, but I’ll look into them. Thanks for the suggestion! My oldest enjoys reading, but she’s sometimes hesitant to look at titles that I suggest. Right now she’s caught in an endless rotation of Judy Moody, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Big Nate, Rainbow Fairies, and some other thing dealing with cupcakes. My literary heart is desperately longing that she’ll spread her wings beyond these.

        As a balm, I’m currently reading The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe aloud to my five-year-old. 🙂

      • Just so you know we have whole shelves devoted to Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Big Nate, and Judy Moody. And Eden has discovered the Rainbow Fairies at the library. I completely feel your literary pain. When I want my kids to try something new I either check it out for the library and say very loudly, “This book is for me! You can’t read it!” And then I make a point of reading it in front of them and laughing or exclaiming over something in the book. By the time I’m finished they’re usually begging to read the book. The other thing I do is read the first few chapters out loud to them to get them hooked. Good luck.

  2. Okay, just finished the third book in the Penderwicks and Alec is Jeffrey’s dad! Wow, wow, wow! Did you know there will be a fourth and a fifth book to complete the series? Book four will come out in 2015!

    I am comforted to hear that you have entire shelves devoted to these books, as your kids seem to have the voracious literary habits that I want to instill in my own girls. I love your methods of drawing them in. Very clever, you, very clever.

    • Don’t you just hate Jeffrey’s mom more than ever? How could she keep Alec away from his son like that? I really, really want to punch her right in the face. And I’m so excited to hear there’s going to be a fourth and fifth book! People have called this series a modern day “Little Women” and I completely agree.

      • Yes, Jefferey’s mom does become even worse! A small part of my simply pitied her for choosing this life, though. Why would she do it? Why would she not invite his father in and, consequently, block Jeffrey from his music when it reminded her of Alec? Ergh.

        I’m so glad that there will be two new books, too!

  3. athenamiles says:

    My nightstand is a small bookshelf! 🙂 And I usually keep the 1-2 “fluff” books on top to read. Last thing I read that I really liked was “Paris” by Edward Rutherfurd…all his books are amazing. Tucking away all these ideas above, I’m not above YA books! 🙂

    • I’ve just marked a bunch of Edward Rutherfurd books to read on my Goodreads’ account- thanks for the tip, they look gorgeous.
      YA books can be amazing and they can also be horrendous. I try to steer clear of any that deal in love triangles- but I’m not always so lucky.

  4. Megan says:

    My husband got me an E-reader a few years ago cause he was sick of seeing all my books laying around, haha. Although I still have them around, they are more organized on the shelf in our bedroom with the E-reader on my nightstand. Not sure now if the present was more for him or me but it was thoughtful 🙂

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