The plumber came today to install the dishwasher and hook up the new sink. I am so excited to see my dishwasher…oh, how I have missed you so! No more continual hand washing dishes for me…woohoo!! The crew was here this morning working on trim, re-hanging the cabinet doors (all upper doors needed to be removed for the painting of the crown molding) and doing some prepping of the woodwork for paint.
This afternoon, Wayne and I went to the tile store. Oh my lord- I was sooooo overwhelmed. We are trying to find a design and color scheme that will be timeless but also different than everyone else. We took some boards home. Out of the three we picked, we now don’t like the look and/or color of any of them! Ugh, Ugh, Ugh. It looked great in the store and in our head but not in our real, live kitchen. Always take the samples home …always! But we did get new wall paint and hopefully that will be the awesome gray we envision. So back to the drawing board we go to figure out the tile situation.
Thankful that Wayne and I have been on the same page through about 95% of this renovation. The paint salesman today told us that he usually feels like a marriage counselor when couples come in. Hahaha-oh, it is so true!
I can’t count how many times I have told clients to “enjoy the experience of picking out tile and paint – it should be fun”. What was I thinking? I will never give that advice again – it’s not fun at all!
The day started out great, the plumber installed the sink and the dishwasher, and our guys accomplished a whole bunch of punchlist items. All work was finished by noon and the house became quiet. Wendy and I decided this would be a great time to go out and do some tile and paint shopping. We stopped for lunch at Strafford Farms and we both spoke of how excited we were to go look at tile. I reiterated to her what I always tell clients – this will be fun.
We went to Tri-City Masonry, which I highly recommend, and met with Laurie, who was great. But we left there with our heads spinning… we couldn’t decide a tile we liked, we couldn’t find a color we liked, and we were confused on what we wanted for a design (we knew we didn’t want the standard subway tile with glass accent). We left with a bunch of sample boards and headed off to the Sherwin Williams to get our wall paint.
We knew what color we wanted before we got there - until we saw the sample chip under that florescent lighting… it was nothing like what we expected. We ended up selecting a different color (our 3rd choice to this point) but it did match the leading tile contender perfectly. Feeling pretty good and thinking we nailed the paint color and possibly the tile - we headed home.
At home we put the tile board on the countertop and immediately realized it was not compatible with the countertop. Oh noooo…jubilation turned to despair and we just looked at each other and shook our heads…this is not fun! Oh the bright side - we do like the new paint color though.
When I returned last night, I headed right back out with Wayne to go out to eat. Cold Snap, dinner and good conservation was had! I had done a 6hr round trip drive with a visit --in about a 10 hr span. It was so worth it though and I love driving. My dog was in excellent hands, I got to visit with my daughter and grandchildren and I got to meet 4 more baby goats!
Today was granite install day…wooohooooooooooo! I was so excited! Our own crew came here this morning to prep for the granite and do more work on the bar area. Trim work and baseboards were installed. The granite looks wonderful. We still need to pick out tile for the backsplash area and revisit the wall paint color. I definitely (and Wayne too) do not want this color in this room. It needs to be more of a true gray…a bit darker. I think working with paint chip samples is driving me fairly nuts. There are so many shades of gray that change color with the light and the time of day. It is crazy. Who needs so many color choices of the same color?
I keep visiting the granite countertops. I feel so happy because the granite fit beautifully and there were no issues. I am breathing a big sigh of relief and feel the stress, which I did not realize was accumulating, release for my shoulders. Wow… this is getting to look so nice. It is so cool to see what you envision really come to life!
What a difference a day makes!!! I am soooo excited right now!!! Though I was out and about much of the day, work was still getting accomplished in the kitchen. The finish trim (door casings, bead board, and baseboard) were 100% completed and the countertops were installed. Wendy texted me and said that the granite looked beautiful but I had to see it for myself to believe it.
When I walked in a smile spread across my face that hasn’t left yet. The black pearl countertops, peninsula top, backsplash, window sill, and half wall cap were done with perfection and match our existing bar tops perfectly. I couldn’t be happier!!! I am trying to get some office work done but I keep gravitating back into the kitchen and just stand there, looking, smiling!!!
We are going to stay home tonight to eat so that we can keep going back into the kitchen again and again to enjoy the beautiful countertops and progress of the day. I would write some more right now but I’ve got to go look at the countertops again…
We returned from Miami last night. We ate dinner on the way home from the airport. A wonderful vacation break it was and now it is back to reality. While entering our house, the plastic barricade designer look brought me back to reality hard.
Today I will be driving back to Maine to pick up my dog from my daughter and Wayne has site work to attend to. Nothing will be done today in the kitchen renovation. It is a bummer but priorities come first.
Absence makes the heart grow fonder. Well, the same must go for the brain too because the longer we were gone the better I was feeling good about the progress of the kitchen. That was until we walked in the door with our suitcases and looked into the kitchen. What I saw brought me back to reality and a somber mood replaced my previous jubilation. There were no doors on the cabinets, paint supplies strewn about, handles in packages, appliances in boxes, missing baseboards and door casings. Ugh... it all came back to me and I emotionally crashed as I realized our mini vacation was over and the task(s) at hand.
To compound matters, it was off to work early and back home late. You know how it is after being gone for a few days – work and obligations pile up and need attention. As much as I want to continue work in the kitchen, it is going to have to wait another day. I do remember making preparations before I left though – so I know good things are about to happen. Until then, we might as well enjoy another night out to dinner.
It’s been nice not repeating restaurants because we are starting to discover some jewels that otherwise would have been overlooked. We went to the 99’s, which we hadn’t been to in probably 10 years. It was a really pleasant experience; great atmosphere, service, food, and drink. We will be sure to come back here again even after our kitchen is finally complete.
Tomorrow we leave for Miami to visit out eldest daughter and her family. So there is packing, prepping the office for away mode and getting what we can done before we temporarily close down this job site.
Brett, our lead guy, is here painting ceilings, walls and crown. It is nice to get to this part. A lot less noise and no dust! I do not love the wall color….oh no. I will have to deal with that when I return.
Next week we will be installing baseboard, beadboard on the back of bar wall, and granite. The plumber will be installing the dishwasher and hooking up the sink. There still needs to be a final coat on the floor, the microwave needs to be vented, and the gas installed for the range. Oh yeah, we need to pick out tile for the backsplash still and of course…more painting. It sounds like a mini vacation is needed..haha.
Tonight we went out to eat and it was wonderful. Cold Snap again! I am looking forward to a mini escape of renovation, work and NH cold. Off to Miami we go……………………………..woohooo!
Today was a good day – I am starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel (or is that an oncoming train?). Brett finished painting the crown molding – it is beautiful, and he put the first coat of paint on the walls. Neither Wendy nor I saw it until he was done. We both had the same impression when we did see it – it’s very pretty, but NOT what we expected. Way more blue than the gray we anticipated.
<This made me realize I need to apologize to Brad and Julie. They recently selected a paint color for the 2nd floor of their house. Three of us painted all day and completed the entire base coat. When they got home they said that wasn’t the color they expected and that they wanted to select a different color. I said (maybe to myself) they were CRAZY – what a waste of time and paint. I get it now!!!>
So it is back to the color wheel for a darker shade that is more of a true gray. But our spirits were not dampened at all as it was exciting to see paint on the walls!
For dinner we headed out to Longhorns – one of our favorite spots. Maybe because it was in celebration of the culmination of the work to this point, or the fact that he had just packed our bags for the morning flight to Miami, but the steak tips, sweet potato with cinnamon, and of course a Cold Snap – made this the most fun, delicious, and relaxing meal yet!
Today I drove up to Maine to drop off my dog with my youngest daughter and her children. While I was away, the power fans were heavy at work for there was a lot of sanding of the crown and sanding of all the patches of the ceiling. Then the ceiling and crown molding were primed. These are the days of the renovation that you REALLY appreciate the power fans and barricades! The crown molding has a new coat of trim paint…yippee!
I prepared the crock-pot again before I left. I put a meat and couple of veggies in. The slow cook was not too slow, for it seemed over cooked when I arrived home much later in the evening. So the meal tonight was not so good….ugh. But the positive was that two new baby goats were born at my daughter’s farm today that I was able to see—so cute!
I was able to break Brett free for the afternoon and he finished sanding, caulking, and priming the crown molding. Wendy and I both went our separate ways and we were gone all day, I returned home just after 8pm and the last thing I wanted to do was break out the tools and work in the kitchen. But I feel like a failure if I don’t accomplish ‘something’. At least this is one emotion that our clients shouldn’t have to experience.
With Wendy needing for me to get some office paperwork done, clients looking for proposals, our employees waiting for their work instructions... there just aren’t enough hours in the day. The kitchen is going to need to take a backseat. Oh no!!! Is this how my home projects don’t get accomplished in a timely fashion? I am sensing a pattern. CRAP! A renewed push will be in order once we return from Miami.
Wendy didn’t get home until 9:30 so dinner was a ‘eat what you can find’ kind of night. This is starting to get old. I can’t remember what having a kitchen was like…
We went out to eat last night after returning from the weekend of visiting with our youngest daughter and her family. It was nice to go out and relax. What I feel is the real difference for our clients going through a renovation compared to myself going through renovation is the final money factor. We both have our savings getting eaten away as we renovate but Wayne/I have to worry about not making money at the same time. Each day a crew member or Wayne himself is working on our project, during normal work hours, is less money being made for the company. I do factor this in when we decide to do a project involving our home. There also can be delays by weather, of materials or subcontractors which may throw the schedule off. Sometimes we have to put the business first and our projects take the background. So it is not Wayne that makes our home projects take longer…..
Today was spent prepping the crown for paint along with patching and fixing the ceiling. All the new trim and baseboard wood is here along with new bead board for the bar area. We went out late this afternoon to pick out wall paint, trim paint and ceiling paint.
I decided to set up the crock-pot today to prepare supper so we could eat in. It felt nice to relax at home this time with a decent home cooked meal.
Our two week window of crashing this project has come to an end. It is time to get back to our previously scheduled clients. We accomplished a lot in that time but the remainder of the work; final trim, painting, and tile work - will have to be squeezed in when possible. Leaving on Thursday for a trip to Miami is only adding to the stress – ugh!
Happy St. Patrick’s Day! I wore my green and my lucky shamrock pin—so I am wishing for some good luck today! The electrician came and finished installing the under cabinet lighting. I love it! They have dimmers and different types of light. The granite template was done today and the granite will hopefully be installed as soon as we return from our trip. The crown molding installation was finished and looks awesome-even with the annoying crooked house. Now the molding is ready for prep and paint. There was more sheetrock mudding and other repair work to walls and ceiling. I am feeling that forward progress is being made. I am still a bit antsy and a bit burned out--I want my house back.
We went to Portsmouth tonight for dinner. I picked a new place for us and it was quite healthy. Poor Wayne was traumatized…hahahahaha! It was a nice evening even with his faces, his rolling eyes and wishing for a big plate of something steak & potato related!
A major milestone was reached today – Stone Creations came to template for the granite countertops. After Ryan was done with his measurements, he informed us that he would be back in a week to install the countertops. I am impressed that it only takes a week turnaround time from template to install. Unfortunately, we have to postpone the installation because we won’t be home. We are taking a trip to Miami to see Rebecca and her family (THAT part is very fortunate). Wendy doesn’t seem as upset about that as I do because as she says, ‘We won’t be here anyway”. I am a schedule freak and it feels like a wrench got thrown into the gears, but she’s right – so I’m moving on. To make sure the process is expedited once the countertops are installed, I have already scheduled the plumber to hook up the kitchen sink water lines and drains and the electrician ready to hook up the dishwasher. It seems so far off in the distance but it will be here before we know it. For all intensive purposes – the kitchen will be back up and running soon.
Since Wendy and I are each a quarter Irish – it was a good excuse to party on this Friday night. But without a reservation, we weren’t able to even get near any local Irish restaurants so we struck out on our own. We ended up at Jumpin’ Jacks in Portsmouth. I’m a meat-n-potatoes kind of guy and they are a bit more foo-foo. Not for me. But the Portsmouth Punch was really good and Wendy kicked up her heels which would have made any Irishman proud. :-)
The kitchen work finally continued today after the snow interruption. The electrician came by for a couple of hours. One of our crew members was working on the crown molding and sheetrock repairs. It was a day of tedious work, so the pace seemed slow. The issue with our crooked ceiling was causing more problems for the crown molding…..sigh.
I decided to cook meatballs in the crock pot for supper tonight. The little 2 burner took forever to boil a larger pan of water for spaghetti. It did finally all come together. I learned that the crock pot is awesome and the 2 burner is not quite as awesome.
I am also starting to get antsy about finishing this project.
As we were getting ready for bed Wendy said to me, ‘When will our kitchen ever be finished?”
What? Really? It been less than two weeks…but I get what she is saying. Losing those two days has made the project seem like it has lost a lot of momentum. But the snow is all cleared and the workers have returned so we are back at it. A little more demo into the great room entrance, some electrical, nail hole spackling, and more crown work completed. As the remaining work gets more detailed it does seem slower – but it is all a part of the grand plan.
We stayed in for dinner because Wendy tempted me with spaghetti and meatballs. Though she had her first snafu with cooking – the hot plate didn’t bring the water to boil quickly enough after adding the spaghetti and it came out a bit mushy. Our Electrician, Dominic Libby, brought us a 6-pack of Cold Snap earlier in the day (awwww – thank you Dom!!) and that helped wash it down :-)
Well, not much going onward today either because our plow guys did not show up to plow the private road. Wayne headed out around 8 am and did it all with his tractor. So by the time he plowed the road, plowed out neighbors and help clean up our yard/driveway it was 4:50 pm. I shoveled and snowblowed and got my butt whooped in the process. We were both exhausted so we showered and headed out to dinner. Cold Snap was had and all was good in the world again!
Snow Storm 2 - Kitchen 0. The storm was subsiding as we headed to bed last night. My guess is that we received about 16” of dense snow. Knowing that it would take a few hours to clear our driveway I informed the guys we would have a 2-3 hour work delay in the morning. What I didn’t anticipate was when we woke up was that our plow guy never plowed our road. We live at the end of a private road that is just over a ½ mile long and has 6 houses on it. Since I am in charge of the road – my phone started going off because nobody could get out of their driveways and children had to get to school. Come to find out our plow guy was out of town and had hired another driver to do the route – but he couldn’t be found. I warmed up my tractor, poured a cup of coffee, and headed out. By 8am I was plowing the road, my neighbor’s driveways, and then my own driveway. At 5pm when I parked my tractor – I was wondering where the day went? Sadly not even a cabinet handle was installed and no progress was made on the kitchen.
Since our road was clear though – date night resumed. It was Wendy’s turn to select a restaurant and she chose Blue Latitudes. It was a quiet night in Dover and not many people were out. We practically had the whole restaurant to ourselves until Kimberly and our adopted son, Frank, happened to come in. Shrimp and Scallop pasta, a Cold Snap, and seeing friends – the day ended much better than it began!
Not much going onward on the kitchen today. Stella the blizzard has come to visit. She has made the power go on and off and she has been dumping quite a bit of snow. We did put a couple of handles on the doors to see the look! There was no going out to eat tonight. I cooked in with my easy bake oven. I made chicken, rice pilaf and veggies. I pulled it off quite nicely and even made it through dish duty! Pans are a pain with tiny sinks……
Snow Storm 1 – Kitchen 0. The predicted ‘Eric Storm’ of the year began the previous night and continued throughout the whole day. All work came to a screeching halt as we waited out the storm. I did get some cabinet handles installed so we could see what they looked like, and to be able to say that I did something. Date night was cancelled due to the storm and we ate in. Wendy prepared another culinary delight in her mini-kitchen. We enjoyed a chicken dinner and watched the season premier of Survivor ‘Game Changers’.
Monday’s work day called for an invasion of some of the crew members and the electrician. Crown molding was being worked on. The final install of all cabinets is done-with some words that I cannot write here. I have been told that our kitchen wins the most crooked wall, floor, ceiling job we have ever had to work with. Well…..at least it was our house and not a client’s! The microwave and the dual ovens are installed-in black and they look absolutely, positively wonderful!! NOT excited or anything…WOOHOOOOOOOO!! A back wall was built behind the last wall of cabinets so we can have a higher bar top area. We are nicely moving along!
Tonight’s dinner was out and Cold Snap was involved. It was wonderful. Tomorrow there is a blizzard on tap so …..I’ll be cooking with power or generator power!
The crew is back in force here on Monday and we got so much accomplished that things seem like they are starting to wind down. All the cabinets are installed; plumb, square, straight, and level – ready for countertop templating. The half wall is built and sheetrocked, the crown molding almost done, and the appliances installed. One more day of odds-n-ends and we will be ready for paint prep.
We stayed local for dinner and visited the Farm; great service, big portions, and multiple Cold Snaps. Do we sound like alcoholics? We hardly ever drink… must be the stress of the project? (insert winking emoji). Our apologizes to Ella, our 8 lb. Schnoodle, we left the doggie-bag of steak tips on the table (sorry!)
Sunday Funday. I am a bit off today. Darn changing of the clocks. I feel like I am running behind! All has been fairly quiet today. Wayne installed more base cabinets. It is really starting to take shape. The second coat on the floors came out wonderful. I was worried that the cabinetry going all the way to the ceiling would make it feel a tad claustrophobic but it hasn’t. I love the white. It really has brightened this area up which is important for it is the darkest spot in our home. The kitchen only has one small north window but is open to the fireplace sitting room which has a west side slider that we installed when moving into the home 15 yrs ago that lets in more natural light. I usually still need lights on in the kitchen in the day time. It looks like the limited natural light will be bouncing off the white cabinetry. There are many opinions about cabinets dealing with color of paint, or dark or light stain. When you have a smaller space and /or limited natural light—light color cabinets is the way to go …in my opinion!
We snuck away for Chinese for supper-it was wonderful. We passed on the beer but had a scorpion bowl instead! We really are not drinkers…even though this blog is showing otherwise. We will have a drink when going out or on a vacation. I am making this a mini vacation-hahaha!
…and on the seventh day he rested...
Well I ain’t got time (with finger waving) for dat! I was serious when I said that I was breaking the pattern of taking my time on my own home projects (and for Wendy’s peace of mind).
I did take Sunday morning off for some r&r and to beat Wendy at cribbage (which seems to be getting rarer and rarer). But as the afternoon rolled around – it was go time. I installed the base cabinet for the cook top and progressed to the left. I got in the two super-Susan’s, the sink base, and a couple other cabinets before dinner time. Wendy seemed impressed as the kitchen has taken on it complete structure now.
Staying true to our agreement to visit a different restaurant every time we go out, Wendy selected the Oriental Delight on Central Avenue in Dover. For years we have been driving by that establishment but have never gone out to eat there. I am so glad we did. We strayed from our Cold Snap and instead shared a Scorpion bowl for two. It has been 30 years since we did that. Dinner and drink was great as we sat in the window seat and had old friends knocking on the glass and waving.
Anyone who has a fear of ‘empty-nest syndrome’… you have nothing to fear – just the opposite. It’s awesome.
It is Saturday. There is no one in my home. YIPPPEEEEEEEEEEEEE! Well, I should mention Wayne is here so the noise level may not be as low as I hoped…haha. Not that I do not love our crew but a day or two off is nice. The sanding of the floors came out beautiful and the first coat has been put on. It looks so awesome! Two more coats to go.
Last night we went out to eat. The restaurant did not have Sam Adams Cold Snap. We were both bummed; I guess you can officially call this our favorite beer now! Going out has been quite fun though. We walk, we talk. It’s like date night each night!
Today we have decided to do a tile backsplash. We were going to do granite continued as the backsplash but with the wall causing leveling issues –this will work out best. So, we will have to go tile shopping! We have changed our minds now on the paint color for the other walls. We will be going a shade lighter……I think. Paint: seems to like to change its appearance in light—daylight vs night time, lamp light, sunlight, and natural light mattering on the time of day. You have to check so many light scenarios that it starts to get overwhelming!
Wayne has decided he is going to put on the second coat on the floor today. Noise has begun…sander plus ventilator jet engine then add vacuum then add smell of coating. The smell can be very strong but the ventilator makes a HUGE difference. It sucks it right out of the house! It sucks heat too. It is very cold out today –negative wind chills. March the moody month.
I am hand washing all dishes being used. I have gotten into a routine. I wash everything after each meal (mainly breakfast and lunch). I put on Pandora and sing and dance and wash and rinse! I am making this fun-ish. This kitchen renovation could go a bit longer than foreseen……says Wendy the realist.
We went out to dinner this evening. The deal between us both is no repeating restaurants. Thankfully we live in an area of many restaurants. We may need to start a restaurant blog! We scored on Sam Adams Cold Snap! WooHooo!!!! It’s the little things…hahaha! But tonight we turn the clocks ahead……bummer!
Today was more of an administration type of day. I always recommend that clients pick out every last detail before they begin… but we broke that rule. We’re not THAT bad though – we’ve only got paint color and backsplash tile left to select. And we were forced into the tile backsplash dilemma. We were going to have the countertop granite run up the wall to the underside of the wall cabinets. But when we discovered how bad the exterior wall framing was (is) – that eliminated that option. Our fallback position is ceramic tile - which I can manipulate to hide that defect.
We canvassed Google Images to look at tile backsplashes and now we need to see some product in person. Armed with our Sherwin Williams color wheel we went to Home Depot to see what they had in stock. Though we didn’t see a tile or accent that jumped out at us – we did agree on a color scheme. That in itself has a huge success – though it eliminates the wall color we were thinking about. Next trip will be to Tri-City Masonry, which is where I get most all of my tile from, to look through their hundreds of displays. That might be fun… that might be a nightmare. Maybe a Cold Snap before that trip?
After all that window shopping I buffed the hard wood floor and applied the 2nd coat of finish. The floor is really coming to life!
For dinner we visited an establishment that we hadn’t frequented in quite some time, the Dover Weathervane. We used to live near that and it was common dining spot for us and the girls as they grew up. As we passed by the waiting area we were flooded with the memories of young Rebecca and Melissa getting the crowd to laugh with their antics while waiting to be seated :-)
Steak tips and mashed potatoes were great… and even better… they served me a Cold Snap!
Friday…yippee! The crew is here along with the electrician. The goal is to try to hang more cabinets and figure out the remedy for the annoying wall built by non mathematical framers in the 1990’s. Wayne is a perfectionist, so this will drive him crazy. This is where my level headed mind comes in. I need to find the half way point of complete perfection and acceptability. This marriage/business works well because we are both perfectionist about different things-so all gets done nicely. But I digress…..
The finish sanding floor crew is coming at noon so there is a lot of moving around quickly from our crew and electrician to get things done before noon. The noise level is a tad HIGH. We have the ventilator going and it sounds like a jet engine! It does do its job extremely efficiently. So add jet engine noise, plus guys talking loudly to hear each other, plus power tool noise, plus radios that no one can hear but me—I am getting very good at zoning out noise levels. I think it is a survival skill you learn when you get married and/or become a mom….hahahaha!
I hear cutting of sheetrock so the proposed remedy is beginning on the wall. The ceiling itself is far from level which is not helping in the installation of the crown molding. I remember our last home which was built in 1863. It had many quirks and challenges when renovating, but it was a solid home. Perfect framing is so important-everything feeds off that. I am taking deep breathes. I survived years and I mean many, many years of renovating the 1863 house. I can handle this 90’s house and the issues I hear from my home office coming from the kitchen. I know he is cursing those framers whoever they were…..
The floor sanding crew is here and the noise level is VERY HIGH so I am off to the outside world for a while.
Today was your classic ‘one step forward, two steps back’ kind of day. But it ended with a Mother-my-I giant leap forward. I had hung a bank of three upper wall cabinets when I discovered the wall framing had such a HUGE bow in it that the cabinets were thrown WAY out of straight and plumb. As I would do on any job – we took them done to remove sheetrock and correct the framing. After hanging the wall cabinets again, we discovered the crown molding lines were getting messed up because the ceiling is so out of kilter. My last house, which was built in 1860, was framed exponentially better than this vintage ’93. So the cabinets came down again… then were installed for the last time to accommodate the crown molding.
Just after lunch the wood floor sanding crew showed up so we did a site cleanup and relinquished the room to them. Four hours later the floor was sanded and sealed. IT’S BEAUTIFUL!
Then the night culminated with a trip out for dinner. Wendy and I made a pact that we would visit a different restaurant every time we went out – no repeating. So I might as well plug them as I go. Can you say 'endless bread sticks, endless salad bowls, Tour of Italy?' The service, food and conversation were great. Only drawback – they did NOT have Sam Adams Cold Snap. That’s a strike.
The electrician continued with installs and updating; more cabinets were installed and the crown molding backing has begun. We moved up to the 16” ventilation fan and it feels like a whole house fan! The fan is definitely doing its job and pumping the dust, etc out of the house. This fan is so powerful that it is sucking in some of the plastic of the barricades! The gas company came out today to look at installing a new gas line for the cook top. The install should be happening next week. We have the template for the granite happening next Friday (17th). They usually install one week after template but unfortunately we will have to move them later because we are taking a quick trip to Miami to see Rebecca and family. We have priorities over here! Family First!!
Unfortunately (seems I have been using this word a lot recently….), another issue comes up at the end of the work day. It seems that one of our interior walls has a bad bow in it. This issue creates problems for the cabinet install, granite install, backsplash install that are along that major wall…ugh ugh ugh! So, we will sleep on it and address the problem in the morning and resolve it. I just know it will involve $$ and headache but I am that “march onward” person and say accept the problem and resolve it to the best of your ability. Whining and complaining are not my thing!
I cooked in tonight. It went well. Toaster oven did well on the meat. The toaster oven reminds me of an easy bake oven as a kid…hahaha! I even have the “right sized” sheets/pans/etc to fit it! The microwave worked fine for the sweet potatoes and veggies. Clean up was easy- I have a dish pan to wash in then a small sink to rinse in and a dish drainer to let the clean dishes in. Reminds of long time ago before I had a dishwasher….yeah, I will never be without a dishwasher unless I am camping! Aren’t we all so spoiled…!
Things are really starting to take shape. The entire bank of cabinets that contain the pantry, wall ovens, and fridge are all installed. Then on the other side of the room all the wall cabinets are installed. The electrician has been buzzing around staying ahead of us with outlets and lighting circuits, and Brett has begun the 3-layer crown molding trim. The wood floor sanders are scheduled today at noon so whatever base cabinets we don’t finish installing will just have to be moved out of the way – floor sanding takes highest priority today. We had been using an 8” dust extraction system and upgraded yesterday to a 16” exhaust in anticipation of the dust that will be generated by the floor sanders. All small children and pets must be tethered down to not be sucked into the extraction machine!
I know my advice to clients is to go out to eat every night but since Wendy put so much effort into setting up a temporary kitchen, and her willingness to try to cook – we ate at home last night. It was as fantastic as ever. Fresh pork chops from Tender Crop, sweet potatoes, and green beans. A culinary delight cooked on a hot plate, a toaster, and a microwave – awesome.
Today, the electrician started; the cabinets were delivered and de-boxed; the hardwood floor install was finished and I picked up the new dual wall ovens. The dual wall ovens barely fit in my Honda Pilot but the warehouse guys at State Street got them in—big kudos to them! It was a very busy, loud day. The 8 inch ventilation fan was pumping out all the dust through its big hosing—a wonderful thing! I handled working downstairs in my office – the chatter, the banging and the fans almost started to sound like white noise. The day continued with cabinets being installed; the electrician redoing the electric and adding additional outlets and recess cans; new stereo ceiling speakers were installed (very important!) and the microwave and sink were delivered. Unfortunately, we realized at the end of the work day that we would need to move a few more existing recessed cans because they would be too close to the crown molding. So …..More electrical work and more sheetrock patching are to be done.
We went out to eat again for supper….I am still enjoying not preparing, cooking and clean up! We found a new favorite beer-Samuel Adams Cold Snap! The advantages of going out…haha!
Crazy day here; Cabinet delivery in the rain, running around for plumbing and trim supplies, Wendy picked up the appliances, UPS delivered the sink and microwave, electrician running wires and lighting, we finished installing the wood flooring and began installing the cabinets. I call it ‘organized chaos’. Then the day concluded with going to out eat and having a nice cold beer. Have you tried Sam Adams ‘Cold snap’ yet? It hit the spot!
Wayne updated me with numerous demolition pictures throughout the day so when I finally arrived back home last night around 9:30 pm--the shock was numbed a bit. Good bye ugly tile. The space looked so large and it was cleaned up nicely. The boys built barricades to keep the work dust in the work space. It makes the renovation so much easier to handle.
Today, the boys started installing the hardwood floor. I thought for sure I would need to move my home office upstairs to the library but the sound of the nail guns started to go from loud to rhythmical. The floor came out wonderful and it was quite painless on my end. Again-thankful, so thankful for the multiple barricades.
Wayne believes we need to eat out for supper instead of me trying to be creative in the temporary kitchen. Well, I do not feel like hand washing pans and living off paper plates so I am going to enjoy going out to eat for a few dinners! No cooking and no cleaning up....I am suffering so! HAHAHA!
Tomorrow there is rumors of cabinets being installed, electrician coming to do some work and a double oven unit to be picked up that has arrived! It sounds like a wonderful day! Crossing fingers and toes.......
Coffee wasn’t as much of a struggle today. I think I am adapting. Microwavable lunch and taking my own advice for dinner – took the bride out to Newicks. Now I’ve heard some people say that they get tired of going out to eat so much, and though Wendy was willing to cook, I thought we ought to see if going out ‘too much’ will become a burden. I can see how financially it might.
I know we are only two days into this project, but as for the construction timeline goes, we are right on track. The hardwood floor was installed today and I was even able to accomplish a few items on the honey-do list. Cabinets are being delivered first thing in the morning – I’m excited for that!
The emptying of the kitchen took a lot longer than I anticipated. Stress level was high--hahaha! How did I have so much stuff in there? I did finish and I did set up a temporary kitchen in my dining room/bar area. I was so overly tired last night and overwhelmed. Today they start demo and I am leaving shortly for Brooks, Maine. Never been so thankful for a peaceful 6hr round trip ever!!
I started the morning by making coffee in our new temporary kitchen – and I was surprised how disoriented I was. The machine, coffee, and filters were right there on the counter but I had to get water from a different source – something that simple messed me up. Then once the coffee was brewed I had to find the creamer, which was in the fridge that we hadn’t even moved yet – and yet that threw me a curve. This might be harder than I thought.
Wendy left early today and wasn’t around when the guys showed up at 8am to start building barricades. We sealed off all three entrances to the kitchen and set up the dust extraction system. The countertops and cabinets were gone in under 30 minutes. Next was the pine floor and ceramic tile floor. Neither gave us much resistance and we had the place all emptied and cleaned up by early afternoon. We are even a little ahead of schedule as I got the starter course for the wood floor installation finished.
Yesterday we went shopping for flooring, dual ovens, a sink, paint color samples and track lighting. We were very successful! The red oak flooring we picked up is now inside to acclimate until it is installed. Wayne started some demo yesterday in order to make a spot to put the flooring on to start the acclimation process. He demoed some of the old pine floor and started the kitchen tile floor removal. Now it is really feeling real. I started empty out the fireplace room before he started any demo to minimize any damage. Today I will empty out the whole kitchen. I am going to try to be methodical and keep stress away..... the key word here is "try". I have a hard time with clutter.........
Successful day of behind the scenes items taken care of yesterday: picked up the oak flooring, ordered wall ovens, narrowed down sink selection, and bought strapping for the barricades.
So that I could start acclimating the oak flooring, and so I wouldn’t have to move it again until installation, I demoed a small portion of the existing sitting room pine flooring to put it in that spot. Wendy said, “So we are really doing this huh?” I got a little carried away and starting removing a corner of the kitchen tile floor – now it’s starting to look like a construction site (or a war zone – depending on who you ask)
All the kitchen cabinets are now empty and the rest of the house is in disarray as we have found a temporary home for all our relocated ‘stuff’. My biggest advice to clients about to embark on this experience is to make sure they set up a temporary kitchen. Wendy has followed that advice and set up a microwave, coffee station, toaster oven, and a hot plate.
I’m afraid I might get stuck with dish washing duties in our little 10” bar sink…so I plan on eating out as much as possible or using a lot of paper products…
Demolition of the kitchen begins on Monday. I am very thankful that Melissa is going to be needing me to help with the children that day so I can be away from my home office. I am excited for the new kitchen but I am also sad on losing the old one. The old kitchen is nothing special on the material end but it holds a lot of warmth of memories. I do not want to see it actually getting demoed or dealing with the noise. The mess will be contained--this is where I love our company.
I need to remove all items from the kitchen this weekend. Anxiety moves in because I am not sure how long this really is going to take. I am not so worried about temporary storage for items but I like routine. We are setting up a temporary kitchen in our bar /dining area and the sink is soooo small. Pots and pans will be a pain to wash. I do not want to only go out and eat. I have a small 2 burner cook top and a toaster oven. I have the fridge being moved into the hall for access. Microwave will temporarily be set up in dining area. I can move our grill to side deck. So-I actually have it pretty darn good! So.....Why do I have a pit in my stomach??? But it definitely feels better to write this out....
T-MINUS 48 hours
I’ve renovated about a dozen kitchens in the past couple years – but now I am about to do my own. My wife, Wendy, is nervous as heck. I don’t know if it is because of the disruption in our daily lives that we are about to encounter or if it is because of my track record of not completing projects at my own house in a timely fashion? She did say that she is afraid that she will be washing dishes in our tiny bar sink for the next year. I am going to try to break the cycle on this one and surprise her with how we fast and efficiently I can complete this project.
I’ve got the crew scheduled for demo beginning on Monday. We’ll start by building three plastic barricades to cordon off the area and for dust containment. I’ve counseled numerous clients on how to prep for such events, such as setting up temporary kitchens, now to see if I can take my own advice – and to see if it really works.