One of my goals this past year has been to find ways to really use our house to it's full potential. not wasting space, not complaining about what we don't have and working with what we do have.
We are still working on that goal, but one thing we have done well so far is that we have began to use our dining room table as our every-day table.
This solved 2 issues; firstly it keeps us from only using the dining room table as a dumping ground
And secondly this has allowed us to turn the kitchen table (which is bar height) into another work station since we are sadly lacking in counter top space and we all 4 like to get in on the cooking.
Of course changing up anything in a house is like pulling a thread on a sweater. You change one thing, and suddenly you have to change it all...
Ever since having boys I have become a big fan of cute oilcloth and vinyl tablecloths. they can be fun, vintage in look and VERY easy to clean up.
But the dining room table is a great shade of blue and I hate to cover it up, so I have found myself going back to place mats after years of being a tablecloth person.
Of course cloth place-mats pose the same problems as cloth tablecloths
(man I wish I could get a dollar for every time I am using the word "cloth" in this post!)
so I was super excited to find these vinyl snowflake place mats at the Dollar Tree on our vacation.
They are fun, festive, easy to clean and durable.
Also, at that same store I found these great drinking glasses that look like measuring cups.
I bought one just like these about 3 years ago in another town at a another Dollar Tree.
I loved the glass - the design, the weight, the price - but when I went back to get a whole set they were gone and I have never seen them since.
Until the last day of vacation when I spied these on my millionth trip through the store.
I bought all they had.
The last item on our every-day table is our Advent Wreath that the boys made a few years ago at church.
We try to have one Advent meal a week, lighting the candles, reading the readings and sharing what Peace, Love, Joy and Hope mean to each of us & how they challenge us.
On Christmas Eve, after we have put out the Santa cookies and the Reindeer food we will light the tall white candle, the Christ candle, and begin our Christmas at last.