A coffee table can be so many different things.
It can be a conversation starter
It can be a snack bar
It can be a games tables
It can be a dinner table
It can be a footrest
It can be a desk
It can be, and at least in my experience usually is, a place to be together.
Since I was small the living room was the place to be. At the end of the day everyone would always come home, find a snack, and then find themselves sitting on the couch. We had a big coffee table, and it was a good thing we did, because we used it a lot. We didn't eat in the family room often, but we were a family of 5 so when we did, we needed every bit of that coffee table space. Anytime anyone wanted to play a game it was time to clear that table off and set out the board. When it came time for a football game we would fill it with snacks and sit there for hours. Just about all the homework I did in high school I did with a laptop sitting on that coffee table. Or with a coke sitting on that coffee table and a laptop in my lap. That table is where most of my home memories from the second decade of my life are. I spent a lot of time at that table. We spent a lot of time at that table.
All that to say, coffee tables hold a special place in my heart. And they're good for just about anything.
With the holidays coming up, we've been thinking a little about getting together. Naturally, I thought about coffee tables, and some of the interesting ways I've gotten to spend some time with others around the one I grew up with.
Now I couldn't recreate all those memories exactly, that coffee table isn't sitting there anymore, and I'm not quite the 16 year old I once was. But, I thought it would be fun to take a try at recreating them with what I've got, and share a bit about what they were.
First has to be games nights. These were some of the most fun times I remember having. We only had a couch on one side, so someone always had to sit on the floor, but this did mean that you got Norm (our dog/chairman) on your team. I remember playing lots of games, but our favourite was Codenames. It was a great game that required just the right amount of creativity.
Another great one would be wrapping presents. It was the perfect place to decorate presents, and once there was a little paper on the box, we could all to that part together. I'm a big fan of ribbon, so I was usually the last one left decorating. Then we opened all those same presents right there again just a few days later.
The last thing one I'll try to remake was using it as my high school office. (I’m writing this blog here right now.) It was a great space that I could do my work in while everyone else could do theirs too. Or read, or draw, or watch TV. We could each do our own thing, but we got to do it together.
I think a coffee table is a great place to be together. As a family or with friends. On holidays or on Tuesdays. A good coffee table is always a great multi-use table. They can do just about anything you need.