"Better to write for yourself and have no public, than to write for the public and have no self."

Monday, September 16, 2013

Dining Room Evolution

Hi! I thought I'd jump back in to blaaaahging by sharing some rooms in our home.  
Don't really know why. Doing it anyway.
We live in a cozy Craftsman that most days feels big enough for the four of us. 
A big part of why our ~1300 sq ft works is because of the ways we use it.  Over the next few days I'm going to share some things that help us maximize our 3 bedroom, 2 bath in the 'burbs.
(Bear with me on the photos... some of these are old and interior photos/ artificial lighting can throw colors off.)

2008 right after we first moved in:
-"Burnt Plum" walls (not this dark in person but they were very very saturated.  And yes, I picked the color and it took 3 coats)
-mini-blinds that came with the house
-no window treatments
-craigslist table and chairs purchased for $100 (I think)
-tiny little wine buffet/rack in the corner (you can barely see)

2009 or 10
-"Pebble Courtyard" walls (Better known as Caucasian around my house.  We decided at the last minute to have the plum painted over while we were out of town for the weekend and I literally walked into Home Depot, picked up a swatch, and bought the paint.  I have no idea they would be so peachy-pink-white-person and hated it for a while.)
-New 2" blinds we installed throughout the house
-Curtains chosen to compliment the Seinfeld-esque wall color. (I wasn't changing it so I might as well work with it.)  I would have preferred them to be hung higher but these were a standard length that I could buy at Target.  I was looking at twice the price if I decided to do all my curtains at the longer length.)
-Benches for the table to replace the chairs since we broke one (or two?), bought at JC Penney's online outlet

-New bar-height table bought at the Home Comfort outlet.  We saw it in the showroom and it was a little more than we wanted to spend.  The outlet had the exact same table and chairs for several hundred dollars cheaper due to a few superficial scratches.  With two small children those are inevitable, so we were thrilled! (sorry this is the only pic I have of the table in the dining room.)

Family office (I will show you where the table now lives another day)
Bad lighting-- black and white looks better, but you get the picture... ha.

-Four glass-topped tables from Ikea.  The surface can be written on with a dry-erase marker.
-Two white (again, bad lighting-- they are bright white in person and the office is the brightest room in the house) rolling desk chairs from Ikea for the kids.
-Two comfy brown leather desk chairs from Office Depot for adults.  I originally wanted them all to match and not be "office-y" but function had to win when you are talking about doing real amounts of work from a seated position.  With J's job and my online classes, a nice cushy chair was a must.
-Semi-sheer white curtains with whimsical botanical print from Ikea.  
-Pictures in frames I threw up at the last minute before guests arrived one time.

My desk: lots of natural light which I love/need, especially during Winter months.  I'm facing the front door and living room.

Katie's table for coloring, etc. is right next to mine.
I like how the aqua glass table top works with the rest of my furnishings.

I really wanted something more than just the all-white curtains I originally had, but still wanted to let in as much light as possible.  These quirky drawings of trees, leaves of birds seemed to suit a family office that is right in the middle of a house. :)

My view from my chair:  
I can see what the kids are watching if I'm on the computer.

As soon as I can find another one in this pattern at Target, I'm buying an organizer for my desk.  That way I will have a place for my textbook/iPad/bills.

BigBoy and J's side:
J has his monitor mounted because he's tall.  

Also, he has it rigged so he sits his closed laptop on the little rack in the back (used to store electronics), pop a connector in real quick, and use the keyboard/track pad/ monitor instead.
(I should mention that he knows how to run cables and cords neatly so we can accommodate such a clean space.)

The circular pink thing is an old iPod dock that we use as a speaker since his monitor does not have built-in speakers.  The guys like to play computer games together and I love that I can keep an eye on him and be available to help with homework while cooking dinner and walking around the house.

BigBoy has room to do his homework by tucking away his keyboard and mouse in the organizer when they aren't in use.   It also provides space for an iPad, pencils, math workbooks, etc.

So that's the evolution of our dining room and we are thrilled with it's current incarnation.

What do you think?  Thoughts? Questions?