There are tons of big fat projects that need to be done on this old house. I keep trying to get bids on different things as we've saved up to get a few things taken care of (getting all the trim repainted, getting the yucky old paint off the pretty old bricks, getting the decks refinished, getting the old crumbing sandstone fixed up, getting backsplash tile up in the kitchen, finishing the re-mortaring that needs to happen to the rocks in the basement, getting a rickety chimney solidified...). But these crazy contractors come out here, look at everything, then never bring me a bid! So the home-improvement front (other than the backyard that we're doing ourselves) has been a bit bleak.
But I have been able to get a few small and very satisfying things done in the past few months.
Our new map table is one of those things.
I've been wanting to do two things for ages - make our dinged up old homework table into something better and find a place where we could put a map of the word with stars on all the places anyone in our family has visited. I was excited when I came up with the idea of putting a map on the table to cover up its imperfections and top that with a piece of glass to keep the map nice and make a better surface on the table.
It took me a while to get around to this idea. But one day this summer, that table was really bugging me and I saw a school supply store while I was driving, had a few extra minutes, and figured I'd go in and see if they had any maps that might work. They had a great map that looked about the right size if I trimmed off the corners a bit. I bought it for $12. Then I came home and called this glass place I see on the way to and from the kids' school and ordered a piece of round glass to top the map and table (it was more expensive than I'd have thought, but way cheaper than a new table or a nicely framed map for the wall!).
Then one week later, I picked up the glass and the kids and I had fun marking stars on the map (lots of stars across the US thanks to our recent road trip!). Then we trimmed the map and positioned the glass on top.
I love that the kids get to think about the larger world a bit and remember fun family trips as they do their homework and I love that the table looks so much better and is now really easy to clean.