Wednesday, October 14, 2009

A Challenge for You

I know most of you regularly wonder, "What's running through Alison's mind these days? Wonder what her mental to-do list looks like?" Well, I'll tell you.

I have a bundle of birthday thank-you notes to be written that are now officially more than a m

onth overdue.

My house looks like a giant stirred it with a big wooden stick, and I can't seem to do anything about it. Must do something about that.

I've really got to come to a decision about the swine flu shot for the kids.

Did I forget to give Zoe her pills again?

Must prepare for my turn to teach preschool co-op.

Got to get those Christmas pictures taken.

Don't even get me started on Christmas shopping.

Why is Libby waking up at 5:30 am every day again?

What is the time change going to do for that?

Why can I, a former teacher, not remember to make sure my son does his homework each night?

Am I becoming one of those parents?

But at the forefront of all these shallow nagging daily thoughts...Must do something about THE CHAIRS.

I've written about my kitchen table before. I have conflicting feelings about it. I really do like it. It's a nice table. It's what Steve and I chose. But we didn't have kids -- or common sense, apparently -- back then, and its "cleanablilty factor" is a big fat zero. However, I can live with that. What I (and our whole family) cannot live with anymore is the "numbers factor."

Steve and I always thought we'd have four children. Even before we bought this table. So we're not exactly surprised to find ourselves with three kids now. Steve, for those of you who don't realize, is a math genius. He just gets numbers. He has held paid teaching positions in physics, calculus, and all sorts of other subjects that make my eyes cross and my head hurt. And while I would never in a million years be hired to teach any of those things, I do have a good working knowledge of first-grade math. So between the two of us, you'd think we could do some simple addition: Steve + Me + 4 (possibly) kids = 6 people. 6 people will require 6 chairs.

So what did we do? We bought a kitchen table (big enough for 6 people) and 4 chairs. Because...I don't know why. I do not know what we were(n't) thinking.

It was fine for a while. But now our number of family members exceeds our number of kitchen chairs. And even my sad little math skills tell me that 5 people is too many for 4 chairs. Unless we want to play musical chairs at every meal. Which I think the kids would really like...

Now that Libby's ready to move out of the high chair, the chair situation is heating up. I've been on the hunt for the past several weeks in earnest trying to find 2 chairs that would match or coordinate with the 4 we already have. No luck. This is the closest I've come, but they are out of stock. And there might be something better out there. Someone else might have a whole different (better) vision than I have.

So here, for those of you who have extra time on your hands and like to shop online or wander through furniture or consignment shops, is a challenge: Find our poor family some chairs because I am striking out. I want two. Our current chairs are a creamy ecru/buttermilk with maple or pine seats. They were not originally distressed, but they are now. The new ones do not have to match exactly (I don't think it's possible anymore), just coordinate with what we have. No fabric upholstery because we still need furniture that can be hosed down at this stage of our lives.

Here's what we have to work with. New chairs need not necessarily coordinate with the dog.
One of the three (cute) little reasons our table and chairs are perpetually schmecked up.

Budget? Unlimited. Just checking to see if you were reading, Steve. You can quit gasping now. Seriously, I don't know. Something reasonable. Something cheaper than buying a whole new table and chairs.

The winner of the challenge (if there are any participants, that is!) will, our hearty thanks. A good night's sleep knowing every member of our family has somewhere to sit at dinner. A place to sit when you come over to visit.

How about a good cup of Starbucks coffee on us? Now there's an incentive.

Let the challenge begin! I want this high chair out of here.


  1. You crack me up! I can totally understand your dilemma. When we moved and bought our kitchen table and chairs - we thought ahead and got 6 chairs (even though we KNEW that our family would never fill all those chairs nightly), but nevertheless, we bought 6... and boy am I glad we did, because Davis broke the back off one of them - so now we are down to 5, with no hopes of ever finding one to match...I hope you find some chairs soon and I will keep my eye out for you.