Some people say that family rooms and formal dining rooms are a thing of the past.  With smaller house design, these rooms are getting cut.   

No, we don't give formal dinners, either.

I don’t understand why.  Sure, when our kids were very young it wasn’t important to have those rooms, but as they grew they wanted to have their friends over and to have parties of their own.  We discovered the value of having a family room and formal dining room.


 For video gaming parties there would be 16 guys playing 4 TVs in our family room.  We had peace and quiet in the living room.  Tell me, where would we have been if we didn’t have a family room?  All that gaming would have to take place in the living room and, yeah, we’da been relegated to the master bedroom – or maybe outside if it wasn’t too cold.

 Our dining room got a lot of use, although not necessarily for formal dining.  Our kids did their school homework and projects there and didn’t have to clean it all up in time for dinner.  Warhammer games, painting sessions, board game marathons, sewing projects, wrapping presents, Christmas decoration staging area, parties of all types and, yes, actual dinners were held in that room.

 And the family room was especially necessary as the kids got older and had their friends over so much.  They could watch movies, play board games or sit and talk without having the parental units hovering around them. 



 We had New Year’s Eve parties and the kids could have one room while the parents had another – food was in the dining room and drinks in the kitchen/nook area.  There is nothing like 15 or more high schoolers to make a house seem awfully small.

 Sure, some people are adding offices to their homes, but what are these people going to do when their kids are in high school?  Those kids will be hanging out at their friends’ houses instead of at home.  Or maybe the garage will get converted.  No offense, but as much as you might want your kids’ friends to think you’re the cool parent, they don’t want you hanging around. you see yourselves... the kids see you...


Here’s another thing to consider – your kids are taking music lessons!   A violin doesn’t take up a lot of space, but a drum set?  Where does that go?  Or a bari sax?  Piano?  Or an acoustic bass, electric bass, jazz bass, upright bass and guitar?  Seriously.   If you build a home without considering the future needs of  your family, you might find your house is way-too-small.

So, where do you store this instrument?

 Perhaps you don’t need a formal dining room AND a family room, but you definitely need another room that can be used for many purposes.  Call it whatever you like, craft room, music room, mancave, but think twice before you scratch it off your list. 😉

Photo credit:  pix of parents, dining room = 

other pix are ours and our kids’ photos