Before/After - Kitchen Table Edition

One thing I'm really into this year is simplifying my home. Inspiration struck me back in February, when DH, C, and I were on our anniversary trip in Charleston, SC. On the way home, I decided that I needed to make some major changes in our house, particularly work on decluttering and reorganizing. When we got home, I made a long list of things I'd like to get done in the house - big things and little things. Anyone who knows me knows that I love lists. Sometimes I create lists just so I can mark off things that I've already accomplished, just so I can feel accomplished. Crazy, huh?

Anyway, I've actually accomplished some of the things on my list, so I'll be sharing them here. My favorite change we've made so far is the kitchen table. Here's what we've had for the past 3 years:

Not a terrible setup, but so cluttered. We purchased this table from an antique store (where quite a bit of our furniture came - we love antiques!). I saw it and just had to have it. DH wasn't as in love with it as I was, but I got my way. The table itself is great, and it would be great for us - if we had a bigger "dining room." Its a 6' table when its fully extended, and there are 6 chairs that go around it. We always keep it like this, with 1/2 of it folded down. And the remaining 2 chairs are stashed in C's room, where they look very out of place and take up a lot of room. (I am proud to say that they do not hold laundry or toys or anything like that. They just hold decorative pillows, which was my attempt to make them "go" with the room.)

This table has a ton of legs, which is not a big deal except that it makes it hard to clean under and around. Its too heavy for me to move by myself without tearing something up, so its rare that I get behind there and really clean. Gross, right? And now that its summertime, I close the blinds on those windows every morning. I couldn't reach them over the table, so I had to get ON the table to do it. Not very convenient.

So I decided we needed to get rid of the huge table. I knew what I wanted: a butcher block-type with white chairs. Very fresh and simple. DH wants to build us a table. He can do it, but with the amount of free time he has, I knew that would take forever. So we made the deal that if I found a table like I want for a good price, I could get it, and he can work on building us one like we really want (read: like DH really wants, haha). I put my aunt on the job, because she is great at finding furniture at good prices. In just a few days she called me, saying she'd found what I was looking for.

We brought it home last weekend. DH had to do some sanding and clear coating of the top, but that was it. I'm so happy with the way it looks! AND I can clean all around it and under it. AND I can reach the windows easily now! I think it really opens up the dining area and makes the whole room seem bigger and more airy.

I should have taken a nicer picture, but this is how it looks most days - used! Once C is out of the high chair we'll have even more room in there.

Since these chairs are shorter, I feel like I can add a picture or something to that blank space on the wall. (I hate blank spots on a wall!) I have a family portrait that would look nice, but I'm not sure if it will fit...we might have to do some rearranging!

I'm also torn now over the windows. Before, I decided not to do any curtains, since there was so much going on with the table and chairs. Now, I kind of feel like some light curtains would look nice. I hate picking out curtains, especially on weird windows like these 3. You can't do just one rod across all 3 since its 3 different walls. Any suggestions?? The windows in C's room are just like these, and it took me forever to decide on those. I ended up putting valances on all 3, and long panels on the outside windows as well. It looks nice, but that's too much for this space.

I think my husband hates the constant projects I have around the house, but it makes me happy, and ultimately, it makes things better! (Unbeknownst to him, this weekend I am UNdoing a project I did a while back. He hated it, and I tried to make it work, but in the end I realized he was right, and now I hate it too. He'll be happy when I change it back! I'll post about it once I'm done.)    ( :

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