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Old 10-31-2007, 06:09 AM   #41
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My wife maintains 5 aquariums and a "wall of plants" in ours. It's more her hobby room than anything, we rarely eat in there but it is nice when we do. I was just thinking about this the other day and our formal living room is the most unused room in the house. We have our home theater set up in the family room and I have all my music equipment in an unused bedroom so we hardly ever spend any time in the living room. I was recently thinking how we could better use the space there, we currently have a light up palm tree and light up Pink Flamingo in there (quite tasteful and a fine use of space). The requesite sofa / chair ottoman / coffee table / stereo / and a desk which we keep relatively neat but we never seem to sit in the room even though my favorite leather chair is in there. Suggestions?

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Old 10-31-2007, 06:31 AM   #42
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Maybe I have lived a deprived life, but what exactly is a family room, and how does it differ from a living room?

Well, I guess we have an LDK, the D part of which gets used regularly for dining, and the L part of which has the dog's couch in it (not for human use). We use the tatami room for hanging out, TV watching, and sometimes eating, so I guess that might correspond to what people are calling the family room?

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Old 10-31-2007, 07:06 AM   #43
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bpp.. yes. As a pair of jeans is to wool slacks, the family room is to the dining room. Both seem 'necessary' in most modern family houses. When I was growing up (60s-70s) there was more likely to be a 'rec' room, usually in the basement where messiness and roughhousing ("etc.") was allowed. In our house we had an extra sm. BR that our parents turned into a playroom for our toys/junk and a small TV.

I would love to have a tatami room! It would be a place where the floor, for once, could be clean, smooth and warm. I would keep the dog out. Right now we have COLD terracotta tiles with hard edges and a lot of dog hair/dirt since it is dusty/muddy outside depending on the season and we have 4 different french doors that lead right outside in addition to the regular door. We and the beast are always in and out and there are no "dirt-lock" entries where we can contain the damage.
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Old 08-28-2009, 12:46 AM   #44
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Game room... Pool Table, Air Hockey, and Shuffleboard!
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Old 08-28-2009, 08:23 AM   #45
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I read my response and have to update.....
The dining room now is my massage room for my home business, I still have my paintings there, and there is only one cat.
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Old 08-28-2009, 08:34 AM   #46
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Dining room contains expandable formal DR table used every day, 29 gal goldfish tank, majority of my houseplants on poles and plant stands, a small terrarium with native salamanders, china cabinet sans china used for glassware and enclosed appliance storage, and the other side of the kitchen peninsula.
The wall that used to separate the kitchen and dining room was removed in a complete remodel 10 yrs ago.
It was a small room but looks wide open now.
"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them." - Walt Disney
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Old 08-28-2009, 08:40 AM   #47
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I use a 3-sided counter with stools in the kitchen for most of our meals. The dining room is for having people over for dinner. I'm the type who would be likely to pile junk on it for months, so I try real hard not to, especially since it's open to the living area and is very visible.

But it's most used part is the hutch, aka the liquor cabinet.
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Old 08-28-2009, 08:44 AM   #48
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Beautiful furniture, china cabinet, butler's hutch, dining table all call the dining room home. It is impeccably decorated, just in case we have any sudden dust bunnies pop in for a visit. This room is a good illustration of why I don't like expensive and fancy furniture...its too nice to use, so its just something to look at, enjoy the view, and to collect dust bunnies.

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Old 08-28-2009, 08:57 AM   #49
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Sometimes, about twice a year, we actually use it for dining.

The rest of the time it's for reading the newspaper while eating breakfast, dropping the mail on the table, writing checks. That's about it.
I heard the call to do nothing. So I answered it.
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Old 08-28-2009, 10:17 AM   #50
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Ours appears to be for decoration as we rarely use it. However, am pleased to say it is not covered with mail as it has been in the past.

I be a girl, he's a boy. Think I maybe FIRED since July 08. Mid 40s, no kidlets. Actually am totally clueless as to what is going on with DH.
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Old 08-28-2009, 10:36 AM   #51
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Old 08-28-2009, 11:16 AM   #52
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We are not formal people, and the thought of hosting a formal dinner gives me hives. Therefore, our dining room contains a pool table, which has become a dumping ground for stuff we don't want our two-year-old getting into. It's fun and does get used for parties, though.

Edited to add: I'd guesstimate that around half of the folks in our subdivision use their dining room for its intended purpose.
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Old 08-28-2009, 01:46 PM   #53
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I'm living in a 1100 or so sq foot house.(my aunt's old house) It's one of the old style homes with a dining and living combo. Separate small den with 2 bed rooms, kitchen and a bath. The dining/living area is packed with my furniture from a previous house along with my aunt's dining room set. I'm talking packed. So I'm basically living in 700-750 sq feet of space.

But it's OK for now. My Mother is just around the corner so I need to be close. One thing I have found out by living here, I'm just as happy living in a small house as when I had a 2,500 sq ft one. When I eventually move, It will be in a small one. Maybe 1400-1500 sq feet.
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Old 08-28-2009, 01:51 PM   #54
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Our dining room serves as an indoor place to feed the guests when the 1360sq.ft outdoor patio is too cold. Otherwise it is just an extension of our sunroom.

It is looking like we might be in there again tonight...
For the fun of it...Keith
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Old 08-28-2009, 02:08 PM   #55
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Dining room is actually used for eating, after dinner hanging out and shooting the breeze. It is not formal, be can be made so. The table is an expandable conference table, Mission style, can and has seated 10. We like things functional.

Unlike many we know, the garage is actually used for cars.
There must be moderation in everything, including moderation.
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Old 08-28-2009, 03:07 PM   #56
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I currently have a great room(dining room, living room combo). I rarely use either except when I entertain. I keep this area pretty orderly in case someone drops by. Usually I don't have anything but decorative objects on the dining room table, but at present there are financial papers scattered about as I am trying to get more organized. I am expecting houseguests for 4 days at the end of September so I have until then to clear this stuff. I usually sit in the cozy den off my kitchen where I have a TV, a small sofa, coffee table, gas fireplace, etc. This room is cluttered with books, magazines and the detritus of my existence. My computer is on a built- in desk in my kitchen. My kitchen has a table that seats four but I don't dine here either. I am ashamed to say I eat at the coffee table in my den while I watch TV.
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Old 08-28-2009, 03:12 PM   #57
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That's where we eat. Don't have an eating place in the kitchen. It's also arts and crafts and projects place between (and occasionally during) meals.
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Old 08-28-2009, 03:24 PM   #58
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Originally Posted by Want2retire View Post
I spend NO time there at all, and I have been trying to sell the furniture (china cabinet, double buffet, dining table and six chairs) so that I can do something else with the room. No luck so far.
By the way, since I will not take the dining room furniture with me when we move north, I will NOT have a dining room there. If the house I purchase has a dining room, I will replace any chandelier or other dining room style light fixtures with something more generic and use the room for something else. If it is big enough, maybe it could be a home gym. If it is small, I could install built-in shelving and make it a library or pantry. I will have to use my imagination.
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Old 08-28-2009, 03:46 PM   #59
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It's where I store all my (sailing) gear in the off-season. I am about to list my dining room set for sale, about 20 years old and used literally 3-4 times. My next home will NOT have a dining room or a living room.

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