My hubby gave me that "what is she thinking" look when I got home. But while I was at book club a few days later, he surprised me and put it all back together. Thanks dear!
A good sanding lightened the stains. They just added to the character. I loved the wood so much, I didn't want to totally cover it up. I decided to give it a whitewash and go for a beachy feel. I basically just diluted white paint with water and rubbed it on with a cloth.
It now has a beautiful aged patina.
A final coat of wax gave it a silky smooth finish. From a pile of pieces to a fabulous new table. I love it!