The Mantle is Passed

This past holiday season, Diana had the excellent idea that her cousin, who has just started to read chapter books, and is a very foused, intense sort of person, should read Secrets of Droon.*


Oh, how this series was loved in my house. It's a sort of sci-fi/fantasy version of the Magic Treehouse? Sort of? There are many, many volumes.

So we went to Book-Off and purchased books 1, 2, 3, and 4. And lo and behold, Diana was right. He started reading the first one—and he couldn't stop. He burned through 2, 3, and 4, and now the sky's the limit. My sister called me asking whether we had any more. And thus began the roundup. We went through all the shelves, gathering book after book. Tossed in as well were Jack Russell: Dog Detective, A to Z mysteries, a seemingly endless slew of Boxcar Children books, until we had three big bags, and my kids' shelves looked…like the shelves of people who are 13 and 11. Which they are, but still.

I mean I know, this is what we wanted to do. And the cousin is so, so happy. It's just that it feels weird, that's all.

Chestnut sneaked in and liberated some Girls to the Rescue books ("they're my favorites"). And there's one or two George and Marthas hidden somewhere. 

The cousin is, reportedly, very happy. I am too. It's just…change is weird. Growing up is intense. And other news flashes.

*A note of caution: do not attempt to read these yourself, if you are a grownup. They are…they are not for us. And that's fine. 

8 thoughts on “The Mantle is Passed

  1. That is so sweet 🙂 With my oldest being 6 years old, our house (and her bed) is FULL of Droon books, Boxcar children, and A-Z mysteries! I will check out “Girls to the Rescue” since we haven’t tried those yet. And I will enjoy this time, as I now know it won’t last forever!


  2. I still remember when we got rid of the Thomas books. And later, A to Z mysteries. And C. was not in the least sentimental, he barely blinked. While I felt… I dunno, kinda bereft each time. Even though the Thomas books were truly awful.


  3. I solved this painful process by putting shelves in the far side of my daughter’s closet — a place where things like wedding dresses and ancient clothes hung. I got rid of all that and had a guy put up shelves. Now all the books that I just could not get rid of from my three children’s childhoods are in there — hundreds and hundreds of them. I know I just, literally, shoved the problem into a closet, but every now and then I open the doors and stand there and gaze at them all —


  4. Ha! Like Elizabeth, I also simply added bookshelves throughout the house to increase storage. But we DID pass along well-loved books to the sweet little girls down the street (au revior, princesses) and traded some others in at our local paperback exchange.
    Fortunately, I’m still the “story lady” at the elementary school, so all the best read-alouds have been saved. Because I NEED them.
    (Also, I’m so glad you said that about the Droon books. Boy, did I not understand the fascination with those!)


  5. I felt this way when we finally, just today, gave away our valentine making supplies. It’s over. There are no class valentine lists in Middle School, or even in 5th grade. We gave them to the After school program at the Elementary School. Well received, I assure you.
    In terms of books, there are a few we just consider sacred texts, and they remain. Carl’s Masquerade, Maisy makes Gingerbread, Richard Scarry books, all remain. The rest-yup, the elementary school book exchange shelves in the cafeteria.


  6. Oh how this speaks to me. I nearly cried at some of the books my kids (ages 10 and 7) have put in the giveaway pile, and been surprised with some of the choices of books that were closer to their hearts than I’d understood. I’ve packed away the most favorite board books and picture books (oh how I miss you!), but goodness help me now that they’re up to books that can be read for years and years…we’re gonna need an even bigger bookshelf. Perhaps a bigger house.


  7. Yes, Lara, yes. I saved several of my favorite picture books that spoke to me. Even if he’s so not at all looking back, I am. We even saved this awful one called, “101 trains,” which we loved reading to him. When he got into trains when he was little, we both gamely got to into trains with him. And then when he gave them up, we could not respond in kind, because we move, as grownups, so much more slowly. Many years later, I still like trains. Sigh.


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