The island of misfit chairs.

Dear friends,

I made a spontaneous purchase yesterday that I’m very excited about.

In my life, I have made this purchase only three previous times. Suffice to say, my moments of this particular kind of excitement are few and far between.

After all, it’s not every day a girl buys a sofa. (Actually, according to my math, I buy one about every decade.)

We had two sofas in our former home. The first one I purchased when Parker was a toddler. We used it first in the sunroom and later in the carriage house, both of which served as our kids’ hangout.  I bought the second one a few years ago for our living room, which at the time was our primary tv-watching room.

The oldest of the two was so tattered and broken down that we left it behind when we moved. The second one found its way into our new living room. (You may have seen it on this post.) It’s a spacious and comfortable sofa (and attractive, according to my definition of attractive) but, unfortunately, it’s located in a room that has no television.

The rooms in our new home that DO have televisions have no sofas. It’s a real problem, this television-sofa disconnect.

To be fair, one of the televisions is in our kitchen, where there is a love seat. But serious television watchers will concur with me that a sofa is far preferable to long stretches of tv-watching than love seats. One needs to stretch out to properly enjoy mindless television. And people of our stature do not stretch out on love seats so much as they perch on them.

The best room for tv-viewing is the den, the home of our 42″ LCD television. However, the den is a sad little room, an island of misfit chairs that defies description. Except I’ll offer this: when we moved, we downsized considerably — from almost 4,500 square feet to about 2,500. We shed quite a bit of furniture and household items in the process, but all the spare chairs inexplicably ended up in our den. If you squint really hard, it looks kind of like a theater room with really ugly and random chairs.

I’m a planner-decorator from way back, so it’s not like I didn’t see this problem coming. As soon as we signed the contract on our new home, I started mentally arranging furniture and knew I was going to come up short. I started a sofa fund, where fund equals an envelope in which I stashed all my spare dollars.

Nearly a year later, my sofa fund had a good bit of money, but was far short of the $3,000 I needed to buy my dream sofa from Restoration Hardware.

And let’s be real . . . no matter how much I dream, no matter how long I save, I’m never going to spend three-grand on a sofa. I just don’t have it in me. At least not while I have two kids to put through college.

So when I heard from a friend that our local furniture store was having a going-out-of-business sale, I rushed right over in search of bargains. There were only three sofas left in the store that met my “attractive” definition. One was terribly uncomfortable and one was terribly overpriced for a sale. Fortunately, the third was attractive and comfortable and priced right — so right, that I got it and an ottoman and a club chair for a third of the price of my dream sofa after a little haggling.

I had such a case of bargain-fever at this point that I wouldn’t even pay the $60 delivery fee, so Mr. Mom and Parker are going to pick up my new furniture Friday afternoon.

And Saturday, in between baking a birthday cake for Kate’s party and wrapping presents, I will be lying on my sofa watching television for the first time in 10 months.

I’m really, really looking forward to it.

With gratitude {for a tip from a friend and the good sense to make a quick purchase that did not involve a $3,000 sofa},

Joan, who thinks the “slate” paint on her den walls is the closest she’ll be coming to a Restoration Hardware investment for a while