Thursday, September 2, 2010

Table for 7 (or 8, or 9, or 10...)

With 4 children and 3 adults gathering for meals everyday, and Peter not content to sit in the high chair anymore, it quickly became apparent that we needed a bigger table. Andrew's grandparents' red formica table comfortably seats 6 with the leaf in and with guests, we had to squeeze in a couple of chairs in the corners. It was time to find something bigger.

I'd been keeping an eye out for a new table-- watching the sales ads, checking prices at stores, looking around at the thrift shops. I even considered making one by getting new banisters from the hardware store for the legs, and then using planks from one of the many sawmills around here and creating a farm-style table. It's been a few months since we started searching; new tables are out of our price range and the ones at yard sales haven't won us over.

I stopped at the local thrift shop a couple weeks ago, looking for something else when I spotted a table. Oh! I immediately fell in love with it, but there was another lady looking at it and I didn't want to rush over and push her into buying it when she sees another interested party. After she walked away (whew!) I moseyed on over and casually looked at it, pretending I wasn't really interested in it. But I couldn't resist, it was just perfect for what we needed. Damn! Andrew wasn't with me so I couldn't ask him, and I was 99.9% sure that he'd like it too, but still, I hate to buy something big without his input.

I asked the worker there if there was any way they could put it on hold for me, and she suggested putting down 25%, but it was non-refundable and if Andrew didn't like it, I'd be out that 25%. I pleaded a little bit, saying I didn't want to buy something large without my husband's approval and I'd send him right over as soon as I got home-- about an hour it'd would take him to get there: 30 minutes for me to get home and 30 minutes for him to come up. The worker called the manager over and she looked me up and down, perhaps assessing whether I was sincere or just wasting their time, but she agreed and said they'd hold it for me!! Eeeee!! I was so happy, I left in a rush, telling them that a bald-headed guy would be in soon, that his name was Andrew and thanked them several times before leaving the store.

As soon as I got home, Andrew came out to meet me in the driveway to help unload the van and I told him to get to the thrift shop as fast as he could. Bless his heart, he knows when I am serious and I would only tell him to go if there was something really worth checking out. He wasted no time, turned around, went back into the house and changed his clothes, got his wallet and keys and left.

It was still there-- they had put a 'sold' sign on it and just as I thought, he liked it too. He paid for it and brought it home and it's the perfect size for us, with a little room leftover for guests and no squeezing either! No chairs, so I am on the look-out for chairs, but for now, the old chairs we used with the formica table will do.

Not too sure what kind of wood it is, mahogany maybe? Something else? The leaf folds under for storage so no worries about where to store it if we didn't need it. It's not perfect, there's a spot where someone left a hot iron and you can tell there was a lace tablecloth on there once, since I can see a lacy pattern in the finish in some places. Someday I'll refinish the top, but for now, we are using a tablecloth to prevent any more damage to the top. Knowing my kids, there's bound to be spilled drinks and messy meals.

It has nice detailing on the corners, brings to mind the art deco style. And a neat feature is when you pull the top apart for the leaf, the legs don't move, they stay put. Much nicer than having to struggle with the whole table to pull apart or shut the top.

We put the girls all on one side and it's nice, they seem to be eating better than before. Like Gretchen sees her sisters eating something and she is more likely now to eat it rather than pick at it. We put Peter between Andrew and I and we can both encourage him to eat instead of just me, and I can actually eat my food before it gets cold because Andrew can help with his food, too.
We've already had 2 extra people eating with us for a total of 9 people, and there is still plenty of room for all of us to eat comfortably. I'm so glad we got this table and for the people at the thrift shop that made an exception and held it.

There is also a matching cabinet that goes with the table and we hated to separate them, so we got that too. It's in the living room for now, and still empty, until we decide what to do with it. I'm thinking of moving the games into the lower cupboard and then displaying some of our pretty things in the glass area. We thought about moving it into the foyer area, but the thermostat is in the way, so that's out. Just might leave it where it is, it's an unused corner anyway, so hmm... wait and see.


karl said...

very cool table. we are in search of a new table also. I'm thinking thick plank farm table.



Johnna Sutton said...

SCORE! Love them both! I'ts hard when you have a big family to find the right table for a good price, it's important to have a confortable place to gather. I'm so blessed to have a "crafty" mom, she makes furniture out of old barn wood, she made me a beautiful table for my birthday. happy eating :)

jenny said...

Karl-- Thanks. If we didn't find this table when we did, I was going to go to the local sawmill and price planks to make my own table. With the holidays around the corner, having a bigger table would be nice. Glad I don't have to add another item to my already too-long to-do list!

Johnna-- So very true! We gather for almost every meal, so its nice when we can all be comfortable. Your mom is cool!! I love that she recycles barn wood to make into furniture! :o)

Lisa said...

They look very nice.

Juli said...

Jenny: What a great score!!! It defintely is so beautiful. I can imagine it looking so elegant when it's refinished!!!