This weekend Alex picked up some furniture that had belonged to his Nana - a dining table and chairs, and a dresser.
Our last dining table and chairs were items of which we were obscenely proud. It felt horribly grown up to own a table and chairs. We bought them for three pounds from the dump. You know, like you do. The table was a big, fold out oval on legs that were in your way no matter where you sat because of their strange diagonal design. They often fell off for no reason. The chairs were massively uncomfortable, covered in brown carpet instead of fabric on the seats, and the backs pinged out unexpectedly when you were sitting on them. I loved the whole set up - I tried to make them prettier, I painted the chairs blue and white and covered the carpet with blue gingham. They looked very twee, but the table legs still fell off and the chair backs still fell out, no matter what I did. When we were offered the set from Alex's Nana we knew we needed them and we're very grateful now to have them - proper grown up furniture, fancy expensive and pretty - as well as sturdy with legs that stay on and seats that you can lean back in. I'm in love with them - but I'm going to really miss those old ones.
This picture looked better quality on my mobile, but it's late, and dark, and I'm tired - see my beautiful new table of joy, with chairs, with backs, and comfortable seats - see behind our wonderous dresser, made of gorgeous, ooooh I hear you say, what beauty indeed - oh yes. (Yes, there is a packet of wet wipes and a children's book on the table, and a nappy bin in the corner - those are partly the things that make this home too!)
Looking at this picture after I'd taken it, intending merely to post a blog about having a grown up table with legs that stay on and chairs that don't pitch you onto the floor in an undignified manner, the story book and nappy bin made me smile. Those are the things that make up our home. My babies and their bits and bobs. Our lives happening in this home.
So I took some more photos (and woke Alex up tripping over the stair gate we had up to stop Roman climbing into the dresser as we were putting the glass fronted top on) to show you all our home. Not all of it - most of it is too messy to show the general public, but here are the parts that make me smile every single day.
First of all, our new dresser now has many of my favourite things in, displayed more nicely than the pile on the kitchen surfaces that we've been used to. On top are my cerial tupperware things. I love them. I love them more than a person should love tupperwear. I love being that twee person who decants weetabix into a plastic tub and I love pouring my muesli from one in the mornings (I love mixing my own muesli too, mine has candied peel in it, ha!) you can also see the glass jars I keep pasta and rice in on the top shelf, the spotty cake tins Alex's Mum got me for our first Christmas together (oh how I love them) and various other items of happiness. Everything in this cabinet is special.
These glass jars were £1.50 each in wilkos - that's a very little amount of money for the happy they give me every day. Every morning I make a pot of coffee with proper ground coffee - sometimes it's posh coffee, sometimes it's economy from the supermarket, it doesn't really matter which - opening that glass jar, and spooning it out with a medicine spoon (because it fit inside the jar) makes me smile. So does caffiene, but hey!
These are the two tea pots we kept from our wedding - we had a 'high tea' reception with scones and tea pots and lots of different kinds of tea - it was so magical, and these are my favourite tea pots. The bigger one is spotty, you can't see the little flecks in the picture. Behind is my favourite wedding present - a flowery cat shaped tea cosy. Every weekend we make a pot of tea, pop the tea cosy on and have a long, lazy family breakfast.
This is our living room window - it's a big bay window (that could do with a clean, the windows haven't been cleaned for at least 5 years - we've yet to find a window cleaner who'll agree to do them because they're all apparently hard to get at - I'm not allowed to climb onto the 6" ledge outside and do them myself apparently!)
When we moved in there were some massive, ugly cream curtains over the side windows that wouldn't open or close - they're on a cheap plastic curtain rail and wouldn't slide - so the two side windows were blocked and the middle was uncovered. We hated them, so pulled them down and replaced them with these fabric panels. I love them, I love how they look a bit like flags and how they look from outside and they make the room look bright and pretty. There you can also see Alex's lemon tree, our three year old ponsettia plant and my favourite chair.
A close up of the elephant mobile in the bay window - my Mum got us this when she was down and the boys love it jangling and it makes me smile.
Next to the ponsettia is a little wooden bird - there are two, but Roman is keen on them and the other is in his bedroom at the moment.
I've taken a dozen or so other pictures to show the things that make our flat feel like home - but this is already a very long blog post and I have lots of other things to do tonight before I can go to bed, and my computer keeps turning itself off - this post has taken an hour and a half to do and I'm still trying to convince my laptop that my copy of word IS installed AND legally mine so that I can finish some freelance work and my articles for Brew Drinking Thinkings (which you should totally all read, by the way, it is superb) so I'll post the rest tomorrow - along with pictures of our visit to Peppa Pig world last week! Oh yes!
I'd love to see everyone else's "home" by the way - a couple of pictures and a little explination about why that item or picture or bit of mess feels like home. I love seeing how people fill their spaces. Post on your own blogs and link below if you have something that always makes you feel like you're home.