The 80/20 Conundrum

You might recall that we spent all of last year renovating our home. I thought I was done with the hard part until we moved in and realized that we will now need to furnish the darn thing. Committing to furniture is really really difficult I am finding. Especially when you have a billion kids.

Our dining room is currently empty.

kids' fort in the dining room

The 80% : Our dining room is the first room you enter after the main entry foyer. It leads into the living room and kitchen. As a family we eat all our meals at our giant kitchen island. We don’t miss having a dining table and in fact it has been amazing to see how much the kids use the empty space for their own play. They build forts, make puzzles, put on shows, and just run around. Basically they leave us alone by playing by themselves, and we leave them alone by not constantly telling them to stop jumping, dumping, running, etc. Added benefits include no sharp corners to take out an eye and no additional surface to gather stuff that miraculously appears from I am not sure where. This empty room is not to be confused with a play room however, because this room doesn’t accumulate toys or have toy storage or kiddie rugs and things. It literally is an empty room where things might be brought in for play but are always removed so that it remains a nicely empty and clean room with lots of space.

The 20% – We sorely miss not having a dining table when grandparents and family visit. It’s weird for them to sit on a barstool I can tell. It doesn’t feel intimate and comfortable. And we don’t have enough barstools obviously so if everyone eats together some of us stand. Or we eat in batches (kids first, adults later, that kinda thing).

I am so torn!

I want to be a grown-up and have a nice big table that can seat 10-12 for all those special visits and special occasions throughout the year. Except I know for a fact that I will be the one walking around going mad on all other days because everyone will always leave their crap on it and/or keep running into it carelessly, or jumping from it, and we will have lost this nice big open area for play and serenity.

Is it crazy that I considered getting an 8-feet folding table with decent stackable chairs that I can leave out in the garage and bring in when we do have company. I mean could this finally be the reason for my obsession with fancy table clothes all these years? Weirder things have happened, right?

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