It's finished, and I'm ecstatic. My big, lovely, and loud family now has a place to gather.
I still can't believe I built a table. Keri added her artistic touch, too; it wouldn't look nearly as good without her expert staining. The benches, which took more time to construct than the table itself, are also finished.
There are stories here: life lessons about family, making peace with fathers long passed, and trying things for which we feel completely incapable. I'll get to those eventually, but for now I'll start with, "Once upon a time, we decided to build a table..."
I'd be remiss if I didn't give a shout out to the folks at Kreg Tool (shown above). It was by far my most often used tool during this process. And their customer service is awesome! I purchased it specifically for this project, and the driver bit that was included was warped. Without a question or hassle, they promptly sent a new one. Good tools, even better service!