A Tale of Two Desks

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It was the best of times. It was the worst of times.

Sorry, couldn’t help myself. 😆

Desks are really important to people in this house. It may seem crazy for a large family to allow each child to have their own full sized desk, but it is the one thing that is totally theirs. Each one of them shares a room with a sibling (sometimes two!) but their desk is their own private property. When their rooms get out of control messy I’ve been known to go in and gut it and help them start over. But I never touch the desks.

Shortly before child #6 was born I decided to rearrange the furniture in our den (shock of shocks!). Abraham’s desk was a disaster to say the least. It was piled sky high with junk his treasures. 😉 I was far too pregnant to clean the whole thing off so I asked Kenny to just please move it down to the other end of the room. He thought we should at least unload the hutch but I insisted that just scooting it down a few feet would be fine. I’m sure you can see where this is going. 🙂 Yep. As soon as he pulled it away from the wall the legs collapsed and the whole desk crashed to the ground — splintered. I had a pretty good preggo melt down over that one.

For the next year Abe didn’t have a desk and then we decided to move. Novella’s desk was almost as bad as Abe’s had been, and it, though solid, wasn’t high on our list of priorities of things to put in the moving van bound for New York. Especially since the moving van charged by the square foot of space used.

And then there was Wesley’s desk. He’s the polar opposite of the other two. His desk was nearly always immaculate unless I piled it up with something while cleaning around it. We initially told him that because he kept it so neat we would take it with us. But in the end I decided I was tired of mismatched desks everywhere and we really needed to get rid of everything we possibly could. So we sold it, too, but we promised that the first kid desk we acquired in NY would go to Wesley.

After we got here and got settled it didn’t look too promising. We have more space in this house but it’s awkwardly laid out. There was really no room in the living room or the great room for desks and the kids bedrooms? The boys room especially was teeny tiny and housed three boys. But then we moved one boy downstairs with the baby.

For my birthday earlier this month Kenny bought me a fabulous high four poster bed off Craigslist. (I would show you pictures but it’s in the cellar in pieces until we save the money for new mattresses!) It came as a set with two nightstands and, you guessed it, a desk! I was going to give the desk to Abe because 1. I forgot about my promise and 2. I still feel bad about splintering his old desk. But Wesley reminded me of my promise and I knew I had to be as good as my word. Abe was bummed. Wesley, while he did feel a little bad for Abe, was thrilled to have a desk again.

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The desk sat in the great room for a while waiting on the boys to clean their room enough to get a desk into it! Meanwhile I decided to save money on summer clothes for the kids by checking the local Salvation Army Thrift Store. I really don’t care for shopping for clothes in the thrift store. There is SO much and it’s usually only loosely arranged by size so it takes a good chunk of time to go through it. When I walked in I really wasn’t in the mood for it. So I thought I’d stroll through the furniture really quick before I got started. You know, just out of curiosity. I wouldn’t buy anything!

As soon as I walked over there, I saw it. THE IDENTICAL DESK TO THE ONE I GAVE WESLEY!!!!! My heart started beating a little faster as I strolled casually raced over to check the price. Rats! It had no price tag. There’s a sign in there that says if it doesn’t have a price tag you can’t buy it.

Of course I couldn’t put it out of my mind. I tried to look at clothes but I was way too distracted. Finally I decided to just leave. When I passed the check out desk the clerk was there alone working on something so I decided to ask her about the desk. What was the worst that could happen? She would just re-iterate what was on the “you can’t buy it if it doesn’t have a tag” sign. But she didn’t! She said either it’s sold or it just arrived and she went to get someone to check. The heart started going pitter patter again. 🙂

A lady came out and checked the desk and said that it had indeed just arrived and she hadn’t had a chance to price it yet. If I could wait a minute she’d make up a tag. You bet I could wait!! And while I waited I had a conversation with God. Because you see, I had clothes money in my wallet — NOT furniture money! God and I talked it over and I got it in my head that I would only buy the desk if it was $25 or less. I had been thinking of saving for $100 desks from Target so I could have justified higher, but I was trying to keep in mind that I was spending clothing money. The lady brought out the tag, stuck it on the desk and it was $24.95, people! I immediately took the tag and went and bought that desk!

Then I pulled, pushed, even picked up the desk and carried it for a few feet out to my car. There’s another sign in there that reads, “If you buy it, you haul it to your car,” or something like that. 😉 It wasn’t easy but I got it out there. And…

It didn’t fit in the car.

I thought it might not so I wasn’t terribly frustrated. I knew they would hold it for me for two days. The frustrating thing was that I had to pick up that desk and haul it back inside and to the back of the store. Whew! I was getting my workout that day.

Now I did say they would hold the desk for 2 days. And it did have a “SOLD” tag on it with my name and phone number. But I high tailed it home, grabbed Abe (the desk was for him after all), tossed the bench seats out of the van, and took off back to the thrift store! The two of us got the desk in the van no problem.

Believe it or not, in less than two days, the boys completely cleaned their entire room. I am thrilled to have matching desks for them because, if you remember, one of the reasons I got rid of Wesley’s old desk was because I was sick of mismatched desks.

And here they are:

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It’s been several weeks since we got them up in the boys room and so far their room and their desks are staying neat and clean. I think this time it will last. My two little boys are growing up!

6 thoughts on “A Tale of Two Desks


  1. If it’s been too long since I’ve told ya? I sure do love you Aunt Nancy! Can I come move to New York to be closer to you? I can show you a few thrift store
    clothes shopping techniques that make it a little easier to deal with unorganised hand me downs! Praise the Lord! 24.95!!! So happy! What an awesome story! I think desks are important in our family. You know I have your old one from when we wer growing up. And Lucille recently passed her little one down to Asa because Ms. Sherri gave her a lovely French style desk just right for a little lady! Gosh, your story was great! I’m totally inspired! Seriously! I want to come be close to you!!! Love you so much!


    • I’d love for you to come up here, Jenifer! We get lonely so far from family. And I know you could help me out in the thrift stores. We’d have so much fun!!

      How cool that you still have my old desk. Lucy’s sounds lovely!

      Love to you and your sweet babies!


  2. What a neat story! God cares about desks and about YOU and your budget! Thanks for sharing – very encouraging!


  3. Your post made me smile!!!! Your love of desks is one of the best things about you. 😉 God knows the number of hairs on our heads – and the dollars in our pocketbooks. I think He’s smiling at your wise use of a budget. 🙂


  4. That is just like our God, isn’t it?! Oh, how He loves you and me! (I’m singing…)

    I always felt the same way about my kids having their own desk. (Not that they did much “school” there!) Having 7 children meant they shared rooms, but I, too, felt it was important that each one have their own “space”.

    Love you, Nancy!


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