Growing up, my siblings and I had the coolest kid’s table ever. The table itself was nothing fancy, but the memories are unforgettable. There were 4 stools, and the stools and table had a white hard-plastic surface that nothing would stick to. At that table, we ate, we played, we laughed, but most of all we created. My mom was an art teacher, and her creativity was unmatched. Somehow she managed to come up with projects that all three of us at different ages could accomplish. We colored, painted, glued, and constructed masterpieces. Sadly, we all grew up and eventually didn’t fit anymore, but the table lived on. It eventually made its way into my mom’s art studio where it continued fostering the creativity of her littlest students for 10 years. Now, this table, a little worse for wear, is at the center of a very busy basement where my 2 beautiful nieces and newest nephew spend their cold or rainy days…being kids.
I wanted to build a table for my kids that would withstand the torture and abuse and allow them to just be kids much like the one I grew up with. Anticipating that our kids would likely color on the table whether or not the surface was washable, I figured I might as well just make it a chalkboard. They’ll be able to draw roads for racing cars, and train tracks for playing trains, or maybe even a battlefield for toy soldiers. I want to encourage them to use their creativity and imagination, and I figured a chalkboard top was a perfect way. My original plans included stools instead of chairs with pullout drawers, but at my wife’s request, I went with chairs. I’m absolutely in LOVE with the chairs!!! It’s harder to fall out of, but more importantly….little chairs are ADORABLE!!! I asked my son what colors he wanted for the chairs. At first, I was on board. “Red, blue, green, yellow…”, but then I lost him, “…brown, purple, pink…”. I decided to stick with his first 4 choices. I also left the chair seat and back in natural wood realizing they would get plenty of wear, and I didn’t want the paint to rub off over time. I finished up the table late one evening, set it up in the family room, and I couldn’t wait to see how they interacted with it the next day. Within 5 minutes of all kids being downstairs, the daughter was literally on the table laughing and waving his arms, and the son was trying to get in one of the chairs. It melted my heart.