Archive | August, 2011

Our Kitchen Remodel!

19 Aug


1 1/2 years ago when we bought this house, we thought, “Hey, it would be so fun to buy an old house and remodel it ourselves!” Turns out it is so much fun. Fun like a root canal. Or a pap smear. Or like getting bitten in unmentionable places by fire ants (yes, this did just happen to me). It doesn’t help that this summer has been so, so hot and rainless (but st

ill humid). My garden is dead and I don’t care. The flowerbeds are overrun with weeds and I don’t care. We started sanding down the porch to paint it and decided that we would finish it when the weather cooled down, so yes, we’re that ghetto family with a half-hanging porch swing, bits of paint sanded off the pillars, and sample colors painted on the porch.

We decided that since Sam works 12 hours a day and doesn’t have time to mow the lawn, let alone remodel a kitchen, we were going to suck it up and hire a contractor. Best. Decision. Ever. It’s still not fun, but it doesn’t involve Sam and I smolderingly staring at one another (and not sexy smoldering, more like, “I don’t want to say something I’m going to regret later”) and then quitting because it’s hot and we’re tired and we don’t want to fight over sanding technique.

I’m going to document the whole process as we go along. One of the biggest reasons why we wanted to remodel (aside from the hospital sterility of it all) is the fact that the washer and dryer were in the kitchen:

The cabinets and “decorative molding” were total handy-man specials–they weren’t going anywhere, but they also weren’t square or pretty.

The stove looked out onto the dining room. I like having the semi-open concept, but the whole layout of the kitchen was awkward and it was a little bit of a problem that the range didn’t vent anywhere. Also, those columns had to stay because they’re support beams, but we have a plan for them.

 

See that white closet on the red wall with the knob on it? It’s a deep, awkward cabinet that we were using as the linen closet. But it was hard to find anything because of how deep it was and how the shelving was situated. So that’s gone. We extended the closet out, so now it’s going to be big enough for our washer, dryer, and vacuum.

The kids’ room had wide bi-fold doors that opened into the kitchen. It was just a weird layout and it was hard to work in the kitchen after or before the kids were in bed because the doors weren’t great at keeping the sound out. So that is now a wall. Then they ripped out the wall that was their closet and the new entrance to their room is through their old closet door.

It’s not even done and it feels so much less weird and more like a bedroom now!

We also walled off the door to what was once the formal dining room because we’re turning that into another bedroom.

When they pulled off the cabinets, we discovered all sorts of layers of awesomeness–sheetrock (I didn’t get a pic of the red paint), red and yellow faux tile paneling, a nice, yellowed, 1950’s-esque floral wallpaper, and then the walls.

Apparently our house was built to withstand the cold war because this is what’s behind all the sheetrock:

Solid, 3/4″ wood planks.

One of the fun things about taking apart the kitchen is trying to figure out our house’s story–it looks like this back wall where the sink, dishwasher, and fridge used to be was actually once the back wall of the house–there’s framing for a big picture window and what was once probably the back door.

There’s also a story with the floors–sub-floor, hardwood floors, black and red linoleum tiles, adhesive, yellow linoleum tiles, and the light ceramic tiles that were in the house when we bought it.

So there you have it! I’ll keep updating as they make more and more progress!