Friday, March 29, 2013

Kitchen Remodel - Week 3: Cabinets!

The cabinets finally came in!  So after 7 idle work days (is that an oxymoron?), I was glad that they were able to get back to work.  All was going really great until Thursday night, when we discovered that (I'll let you infer exactly how) the workers punctured the waste pipe that draws the waste from the two upstairs bathrooms downward when they were reinforcing the upper cabinets along that wall. Not cool.  Maybe that was why there weren't cabinets on that wall in the first place...

That darker area?  Not supposed to be there.

I called the project manager right away, and he had the guys come back out.  I felt bad that they had basically just gotten home, then had to turn around and come right back (not bad enough for us to wait until the morning, though). But they did, and were relatively cheerful about it.  Got to work right away and stayed until it was right.  They had to put in a new section of pipe, seal it, then patch the drywall back up, then hang the cabinets again.  They had to at least put the lower cabinets back, because the granite guys were coming in the morning to measure for the counters.

Prophetically, I had just read an article that same morning about kitchen remodels, and part of what it said was to plan for at least one nightmare.  If this is the worst of the nightmares, then we will hopefully be okay. (Crossing fingers!)

The project is really starting to take shape, with the cabinets in and the handles on.  I love the handles I bought from Restoration Hardware for the island:

Close up:

The granite guy came to measure for the counters.  Good thing I was around to make some decisions, because there seemed to be some confusion about what kind of granite was going where.  :-)

So, here's where we are after week three:

Next week, we can look forward to getting the floors and (maybe) the counters.  Unfortunately, they pulled apart the powder room (it's the only bathroom on the main floors) so the flooring guys can lay the cork...on Thursday.  Not sure why they needed to do it today, but we still have three bathrooms to choose from, so I won't complain (much). It just makes getting a glass of water that much more of a chore.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Kitchen Remodel - Week One (and Week Two, unfortunately)

The first week of the remodel went as smoothly as one could expect.   All the demolition was done more quickly than anticipated, and the workers got going with electrical and wall repair. So far, my husband's favorite thing has been the zipper door.  They hung a sheet of plastic over the doorway (on the right), then stuck this blue strip down the middle (turns out it's a zipper), then pulled the zipper and it cuts a doorway.  Ingenious!

The most exciting thing that happened was that they were able to install the new ceiling fan and sconces.  Not to brag or anything, but we now have the coolest ceiling fan ever!


In general the place doesn't look a whole lot different than it did after day one, because a lot of what was done was kind of "structural" in the sense that it was behind walls or under floors, so, once they patched everything up, you can't really see it.  But I know it's there, and it's going to be awesome. Really.

Hardware and Shelving Drama:

We ordered the cabinet hardware, but we had to go with our second choice, because our first choice was backordered until the end of April.  THEN, the shelves we were going to use for the kitchen turned out to be too deep, so we tried to order our second choice and those were on backorder, too!  I was getting really nervous about all of this, so I looked on-line and found a company in West Virginia called The Virgin Timber Lumber Company that uses reclaimed wood to build all sorts of things, including shelves.  So I emailed one of the owners, who was really nice and accommodating, and ordered 3 shelves from him, in the exact lengths and depths that I was wanting.  Maybe things work out for the best, despite ourselves.  :-)  Of course, the brackets we wanted were also on backorder, so we went with a different kind, but I'm just so nervous that all these different parts are going to come together and I'm going to hate it in the end.  I have actually lost sleep thinking about all of it.

Not only that, but the narrower shelves are going to only be 4 inches deep.  Little did I know that it is hard to find brackets for a shelf that narrow.  Luckily, I hope, our project manager said he might be able to float mount those. Still nervous about it all coming together, though.

That's about all for week one.  I'm not sure how well week 2 will go, but I'll keep you posted!

[One week later...]

So here's how week two has gone:  see week one.  Our cabinets AND our flooring have been delayed, so there was absolutely no work done this week.  Super awesome because, of all the weeks they could have taken a break, next week would have been so much better, because it's spring break.  So, instead of sleeping late and lazy mornings, we'll have workers in here at 7:30 all week. Apparently that's to be expected (but really, that's pretty lousy planning, people). So, I'm going to give myself a break and not take any new pictures or do a separate post, because there's nothing to post about.  :-)

The good thing that happened was that the shelves can be float mounted, so that's a plus. And all of our cabinet hardware is in, so once our cabinets are in, we can rock and roll.  :-)

I expect by the end of next week, there will be all sorts of new stuff to see, so tune in then!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Kitchen Remodel - In the Beginning

After living in our house for over nine years, we finally bit the bullet and are remodeling our kitchen.  I know I haven't posted in a while, but that's because we've been organizing, purging, and cleaning out the kitchen in preparation of the work, which started this week.  Here are some "before" pictures. I'd like to say that the kitchen is a mess because we're packing it up, but that's only half true.  It generally always looks that cluttered, although we don't usually have a trash bag in the middle of the floor.  I am so excited to get more cabinets, counter space, and a bigger room, in general.  See that half-wall and column (below)?  It's gone.  :-)

 And this country border that lines the entire back half of the house?  It's going, too.  Buh bye!  I'd like to say I'm sorry to see you go, but I'd be lyin'.  I forgot to get a close up picture of the vinyl floor, but it had hearts on it, too.  Yeah, I'm pretty excited.

 Here's what the kitchen looked like after the first day:

The most worrisome part for me is not having a kitchen for four weeks.  I think the longest I've ever gone without cooking is maybe a week, when we've been on vacation, so this is going to test my patience (and waistline).  On the bright side, it forces us to try restaurants that we've been wanting to try but haven't because we rarely eat out.

We do have a temporary set up in the dining room for now, with a toaster oven and microwave.  I'm also working on a way so my husband can have his coffee, otherwise we'll have to bump the remodel budget up about $500, which is approximately what he would spend at Starbuck's and Dunkin Donuts if he has to buy coffee every day.  I'm only slightly exaggerating.

Luckily, we have an extra fridge in the basement, so we have cold stuff -- milk for cereal, sandwiches, and salads will do some nights.  For tonight, I'm trying to cook some frozen meatballs from Ikea that we bought last week.  I'm giving it a go in the crock pot, bought some liners, so the only thing we'll have to wash is the cover.  I'm not sure the gravy will work that way (I just dumped the mix and water in the crock pot, gave it a stir and dumped the meatballs in), but we'll know in about 8 hours. I'm either brilliant, or...not.  :-)

I'll keep you posted on the progress, but, needless to say, I won't be posting any recipes for a while.