As you know I work… and I have six kids who are all home for the summer. This doesn’t add up to a lot of time for me to do much more than basic food prep and upkeep around the house (pair that with a dishwasher that is perpetually broken, a dog, and a flock, and, yeah, we have stuff to do.)
The other day, spurred on by my success with the key rack, I decided to tackle a small table that has forever sat in the corner of our living room. I decided to see what I could to make the situation, well tinier. I mean a step in the right direction is a step in the right direction, right?
First of all, that table was made by my brother when he was in High School. He gave to me as a birthday present one year. If the house were on fire, I’d grab that table, there was no question that it stayed.
The lamp however, was a different story. There is a couch located just off to the right of that table. It’s a convenient place for people to be on their laptops, which means that they typically have to use the electrical plug behind the couch, which means that they unplug the lamp, which means that nobody plugs it back in.
Without exaggerating, that lamp has been unplugged for at least the last 5 years. Obviously we don’t need it – out it went.
The deer antler, although way cool, went to a local nature center so that kids at summer classes could learn from it.
I love candles, my asthmatics do not. I put that candle in our emergency box (it has a good holder) for when we invariably lose electricity. I don’t need to store things in view of everyone that are only used once in a while.
We bought the stuffed monkey under the table for our dog. We loved it, he didn’t, but because we loved it so much, we kept it there *hoping* that one day, he would change his mind. Out it also went.
The Lego mug in the box on the floor was a Christmas gift and while very cool, was highly impractical (let this be a lesson to you when you consider gifts for other people.) I made the decision to donate it to our local FIRST team so that they could use it in a raffle (and then someone else can put it in their yard sale later on.)
On the table was a basket. For a while I was into the “Longaberger basket thing.” I probably have dozens of baskets and many, like this one, are just sucking up space holding things that don’t need to be held. This basket would look better on eBay. Out it went.
I go to a poultry congress each year and they take donations for a raffle, there is no charge to enter and so I “pay” my way by bringing items for the raffle, that covered hen dish went into a box for the event.
Under the table, I had some decorations, a wooden rooster and an antique clay jug, I like both of them and so they stayed (living tiny does not mean you have to live sterile.)
The top of the table is actually an inlaid checker board (although we haven’t been able to play chess or checkers on it in years due to the clutter.) When I opened the drawer, I found two sets of checkers and two chess sets. We made sure that all pieces were there and then we packaged up one of each set to give away.
After I took everything away, I decided that it looked a little bare and so I put a favorite family photo on it. The beauty of that one photo though, is that it can be replaced with something else very easily (and when we want to play chess, we only have to take a small frame off.)
A quick dusting and spider web scraping and this is the end result:
Our table still has personality, but now it’s functional and practical (there is room to put a cup of coffee down on it instead of balancing it on the sofa arm – potentially spilling it all over the floor – ask me how I know about that one.)
I know, I know, it’s only one little table, but it’s yet another step in my journey to living tiny in a big house and I’ll take it.
Just for fun, here’s a link to a 325 foot apartment. Check out the space saving options in this beauty. Honestly, this apartment makes me drool. Tiny Swedish partment ideas.
Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com
Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.
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