this table...

have you played musical chairs lately? me neither. but musical tables is a whole 'nother story.

i'd estimate that about 15 kitchen tables have graced the valleygirl kitchen in the 7 years that we've owned this house--most of them having made a short appearance within the last 6 months. our decision to buy & resell antique furniture certainly plays a part in all of the recent movement--we find something we like and get to try it out before eventually finding it a good home. kind of like fostering kittens, only without the litterbox.

the kitchen table is an important piece of furniture in any home, no doubt. but here it's imperative that we adore our table since it also functions as our counter space. shortly after hudson was born, jeremy removed a whole wall in our house to open our space. that wall housed not only our fireplace, but also well over half of our counter surfaces. you'll notice that in many of our cooking photos, lucy (and now hudson, too) are seated on the table, helping out. fortunately they understand commands like "sit" and "stay" pretty well.

so, in our search for the perfect antique table we've come across a lot of imperfect tables. all nice in their own way, but not exactly the match for our space or needs (both kids are in highchairs without trays and i very much desire for the highchairs to push into the table when not in use, instead of just floating around my kitchen).

our most recent table was part of a haul of over 2 truckloads of vintage and antique goodies. we didn't really even see it before bringing it home and throwing it into the house to get it out of the rain. and oh my gosh, it is my favorite table yet. a scaled-down farmtable with a super rustic finish. i'm in love.

really and truly, it's what most people might call a hunk of junk. water damage to the feet, missing the pull-out drawer, old blue paint on the legs all but peeled off. it appears there was once tile or something similar adhered to the top of the table, which has since been taken of and left a splotchy residue of dried mortar. the table is too short (hudson's highchair is floating!) and i myself can hardly get my legs under it to sit comfortably. it can really only sit four. six would be a very tight squeeze. and in all reality it's too small to use as the counter space that it needs to be.

but i LOVE this table. there's something about a piece of furniture so prettily beat up--not falling apart all over the place, but genuinely rustic. it is such a lovely juxtaposition with my mix & match vintage china and i smile every time i set out the plates and bowls. this piece has a story which it is just itching to tell. sadly i don't speak table. i do believe it came to california after living in the midwest, but beyond that i can only guess.

there is some talk about making this table work for us. industrial casters to raise it up to accommodate the highchairs. putting in a new drawer, which would handily hold spatulas and things of the like. polishing up the top, sanding down the damage on the legs. perhaps even reworking it to accept a leaf.

or, sigh, we could pass it on to the people for whom this table will actually be perfect. and resume our search. decisions, decisions. there is a very sweet round table with pedestal base lurking in the depths of my garage. it winks at me from time to time while i am out doing laundry. so i guess we'll see.


i like this...

wanted to quickly share some nice words i found today on the topic of less = more. especially pertinent to me at the moment since today i sold my extra large ikea dresser (for $200--thank you craigslist!) and purchased an amazing antique dresser to take its place (for $75--thank your craigslist!). photos to come, but the new dresser is significantly smaller, which means i'll have to do a bit of weeding through the piles of clothes (which are currently in baskets on my floor) in order to make it all work.

i don't usually find it difficult to purge my closets, but having just downsized from two dressers into one dresser a couple of months back, i am having to bite the bullet and really be firm with myself. curtailing new shopping hasn't been much of a problem for me--my outlook on brand-spankin-new-retail in general has changed significantly over time. getting rid of the old stuff--however unworn it may be--proves a bit more difficult. although i can rationalize that a non-stuffed dresser is easier to organize and keep organized, there's a nagging worry about all of a sudden having no proper clothes for a random specific occasion that will never arise.

you know?

pit stop on the waffle kick..

is it really just a "kick" if it's twice a week for, um, years? probably not. anyhow, our go-to recipe always changes, but lately it's been these, without fail--a recipe that takes the perfect pairing of bacon and waffles to the next level. sweet & salty. good & just a little greasy. so very, very good.

making waffles from scratch used to seem daunting--that box of bisquick was just so much easier. now, after two or three years of nothing but scratch waffles, i can't imagine making them any other way. isn't it funny how perspectives change?


some things...

thanks to those of you that emailed or commented with concern over just where we've got to in the last few weeks. your kindness is truly touching! i didn't mean to fall off the blogging train as much as it just happened--to say that we've been busy is a true understatement.

lots of our time has been devoted to buying & selling vintage & antique goodies. we're selling monthly at the alameda antiques fair and candlestick antiques fair, plus have just gotten a large space in a local shop. we're also selling at several different venues intermittently. all that chalks up to a large inventory--and lots of time dedicated to finding it, hauling it, storing it, fixing it, logging it, tagging it, packing it, hauling it, unpacking it, re-packing it. you get the idea. all with two (mostly cheerful) little ones in tow. i fall into bed every night completely exhausted. the upside is that i sleep very well.

not that we haven't had a little (lots of?) fun along the way, of course. things are always happening around this place, though i'm not as great at having my camera handy to capture these small moments as i used to be.

here are a few tidbits:

i managed to squeeze in a bit of sewing time, despite the fact that the once-all-mine backyard studio has been relegated to to-be-painted furniture storage, and i'm currently sewing in our office (which used to be a coat closet--and not the walk-in kind, either).

this simple banner replaced the fiber garland i had up at christmastime, and is made from a set of vintage quilt patches strung on a length of twine. the patches i found while cleaning out the aforementioned studio in order for it to become a storage space. sigh. such is life.

our low-key valentines day was marked only by a fun morning art project (and a bag of buffalo bleu kettle chips for jeremy--super romantic, i know!). this project consisted of a massive piece of brown paper and a single color of paint. we wanted glitter, but there was none to be found. the entire plan was to then cut up the paper into hundreds of hearts, and make hanging garlands to suspend from the ceiling. a little ambitious, no? (check out what eventually happened to our artwork in the next to last photograph in this post).

when regular painting starts to get old, break out a couple of matchbox cars to liven things up...

if the shoe fits, the two-year old should rock it. we stumbled across these genuine vintage-from-holland wooden clogs in the home decor section at the thrift shop. lucy squealed (after all, wynken blynken and nod one night sailed off in a wooden shoe). i said, "uh, i guess so. if they fit, of course."

like a glove, baby.

hudson has got himself a "new" tractor (and a hair clip--thanks, lucy!). as you can see, the tractor pulls an super rusty miniature wagon. talk about good times. until just recently the weather has been fabulously springlike--we're talking nearly three weeks of door-open-all-day, kids-running-around-half-clothed, bare-feet-in-the-sandbox type stuff. blossoms on the fruit trees, dafodills in the garden. a welcome break from winter, which has now returned full force with hailstorms and icy wind. trips out to ride the tractor are already being missed by our littlest guy!

posting in this space may remain intermittent for the next month or so, as we work to transition everything (like, um, life) and get settled into (onto?) our new path. plans are in the works for our very own webpage (complete with blog) but i (most usually a do-it-now kind of gal) am learning that all things take time. somewhere between the tortoise and the hare is what i'm aiming for. i think.

thanks much to all of you who are still hanging around.