Posted by: charityliz | August 15, 2010

what a difference a table makes

I’m one of those people that really likes to make home feel like home…not just for me, but for whoever visits. I guess that’s called “nesting” (but I’m not a mother hen and there are no little “chickies” in the picture right now).

So for the past few weeks I’ve been slowly making my new apartment feel more and more like home, but without a kitchen table I just couldn’t quite feel settled.

And it can’t just be any kitchen table. It needs to fulfill the following requirements:

* small enough to fit well in my little corner nook in the kitchen

* but it I also must have the capacity to expand to seat more than two—for when I have my big dinner parties (granted, this won’t happen for awhile, given my limited number of friends in Redwood City—but given time… )

*and if all the stars align…this table would have a bit of a retro flair, because with the old original 50’s style pale yellow tile on the counter top, it’s hard not to embrace the retro in my kitchen.

So, after weeks of searching, I finally landed the PERFECT table. I saw it on craigslist—it turned out to be even more than what I was looking for—and for a price I couldn’t beat! I called the day the ad was posted and was there to pick it up the next day. (Which included an adventure of its own—driving to The Presidio in the city and then figuring out a way to shove a table and 4 chairs into my Nissan Altima—but that’s another story).

The table was fully worth it!!! Solid wood, with two large leaves that can fold up (like a butterfly)—and the best part is the cute little chairs can actually be stored within/underneath the table (this is a huge bonus, since my apartment has practically no extra storage space). So it fits perfect in my kitchen with just one leaf up and two chairs…and when I eventually get around to having a fabulous dinner party, I figure I can squeeze at least 8 around the table in a pinch! And somehow, the stars aligned and it really does look retro, with the rounded corners and clean white laminate top. I LOVE IT!

So now my table is all set up in my kitchen and it has already revolutionized my life in this apartment! It was “christened” with a fresh breakfast on Saturday morning while my dear old roomie, Heather, was visiting. This morning, I enjoyed the morning sunshine through the kitchen window as I journaled at my table, sipping my coffee and eating breakfast. And tonight… my table inspired me to have a “real” dinner— one where I could actually “set the table” rather than eat out of Tupperware while sitting in my living room chair—complete with a fresh salad, bread & olive oil, and a tasty glass of wine.

As I enjoyed my dinner at my new table, I was inspired to blog about what a difference a table makes and then I couldn’t help but turn it into a bit of a food review (of course, the Rachel-Ray-Wanna-Be-in-Me).

Winnefred Chardonnay: Now, for the past few weeks, I’ve only gotten as far as thinking about having a glass of wine, but then always decided that opening a bottle for just me would be a waste. BUT with my own kitchen table and a designated place to set out a true dinner, it just seemed right to have a glass of wine with my lovely dinner, so I was inspired to pop open a bottle (even if it was just for lil ole me). And it was wonderful (and still is as I’m typing this blog). Winnefred Chardonnay is a delightful treat. Admittedly chosen for its very cute label (that perfectly matches the theme of my kitchen), the affordable price, and the region of its inception—my beloved Central Coast. To be honest, I’m still learning my taste for white wines. I typically don’t care for Chardonnays much, but this summer I’ve had a new appreciation for a cold glass of Chardonnay on a hot day. This Winnefred is sweeter than most Chardonnays and paired well with my Italian style garden salad. And that’s all I got in terms of a wine review.

My Italian garden salad is simple—grilled chicken, freshly grated Romano cheese, tomatoes, and freshly picked basil and rosemary from my garden on a bed of spinach and arugula, tossed in an olive oil and balsamic vinaigrette dressing. I never tire of this salad!

My olive oil of choice as of late is the Sicilian EVO from Trader Joe’s. It really is quite tasty. The label claims to have a “fruity flavor, smooth buttery, with a distinctive peppery finish.” My limited olive oil tasting experience/education has taught me that olive oil comes on a spectrum of buttery to peppery. So I guess this one is somewhere in the middle. I just think that it tastes more “green” than most olive oils from the store—and I learned in Tuscany that the greener the olive oil, the fresher it is! Pairs deliciously with a warmed chunk of fresh baguette from Trader Joe’s.

Signing off from a wonderful dinner and a chance to sit and enjoy life at a fabulous table.



  1. Loved the entry…and the table and chairs…and I look forward to some Winnefred next time I’m up. I like chilled Chardonney, the dried the better.

    I’ve GOT to introduce you to the olive oils that I bought at the OC Fair this weekend! Nothing like I’ve ever had before.

    • I love that you went to the Fair, Mom! That sounds like a fun southland adventure. :)_ Will def look forward to trying the oils this weekend!

  2. You are just too fun! Congrats on the new table and settling in. We miss you, but glad you are doing well

    • thanks, girl! Miss you too! Hey–btw–did you ever finish furnishing your new place?? pictures please!

  3. Nice!!!!

    And I’d like to introduce you to the Basalmic Vinigar that Mamacita brought home with the oils.

    Miss you mucho!

    • oh, really? she didn’t mention the Balsamic! sounds like we’ll be feasting this weekend!

  4. Cute table! I can’t wait to break it in and give you a reason to use all the leaves.

    • yesssss. I believe it’s the “Babes in the Bay Area 2010” trip that will be breaking in my new table! (as in, YOU and the girls taking over my apartment for one sweet weekend in october!) Can’t wait! 🙂

  5. What a great find! I can’t wait to see your place again all done up. And don’t feel wasteful opening that bottle of wine. You deserve it!

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