I love our dining room table. If our table could talk, oh the things it might say.
Let me tell you about our table:
We bought our home one stormy night in February 2008. We had already put in 4 offers on 4 different houses and lost all 4 times in bidding wars. We were not going to lose this house. We agreed we were prepared to pay $100,000 over asking. Yup – $100,000. We live in a city with insane real estate costs and slim pickings so we were getting pretty desperate.
The night offers were being taken (that’s how it works in these crazy markets) there was a huge snowstorm. To our complete and utter shock , we found out there were no offers on the house – likely because of the snow storm. So we went in and offered list price – to which the sellers laughed as they had listed low in anticipation of multiple offers. They countered with a price $50,000 over asking to which we pretended to be appalled (even though we had been willing to go $100000 over)! We settled on midway – $30,000 over – the biggest steal in our minds!
While we were signing papers, we sat in their dining room (which is basically the center of the house). As we were signing, they happened to offer us their dining room table and matching hutch. It wouldn’t fit in their new home, so they’d be happy to leave it for us. We were thrilled – we didn’t have a table big enough for us all and this one extended to fit 12! It was a beautiful, solid table – could do with being refinished eventually – but perfect for our needs.
We were happy to take this table also because despite having pretty much two of everything (since we were merging two fully furnished homes – we had a lot of stuff!!) we really wanted to change many things to make this home really “our own”. This was the perfect start to creating our “own home” rather than having bits and pieces from two previous homes.
This table still stands in our dining room. We have replaced all the chairs and hung a new chandelier but the table remains the same. This table has really become the focal point in our home. Sure the kitchen is a gathering place, the family room is a room of comfort, our bedrooms are all our own little havens, but the dining room table is the place.
This is where so much of our family life takes place! The kids do their homework at the table. Arts and crafts are done at the table. I sometimes even fold laundry on the table! Rob sits at the table to listen to music (apparently it’s the best spot in the house to hear the speakers). We even dance around the table.
Most importantly, the table is the place for all our family dinners (we usually eat breakfast in the kitchen) – every day meals and special occasions. It is at these family dinners where many of our family discussions take place. Family dinners are sacred. Sometimes it is the only time to really connect with each other! It’s a time where the rest of the world is completely shut out: no TV, no phones, no technology. Candles are lit every night, and we share our stories of the day. I have to say dinner time around this table is where we have shared the most laughs ever, talked about the touchiest of subjects, and communicated our biggest dreams.
The table also serves as a reminder to me of how lucky we were that night to get our home – and the table thrown in! I love that our table has a story. The table will continue to serve as a reminder that no matter where we are, it is always important to gather round. It’s always important to have a spot where we are completely focused on each other, where we share, laugh, celebrate and connect. I will always make it a top priority to gather around this table with my family.