Wayne worked diligently on the tile install since our last blogging update. It was a slow, meticulous process but it did come out absolutely beautiful! Up until the week before Memorial Day weekend- we still needed to paint the walls, paint the trim, and finish grouting the tile. Rebecca and her girls were coming up from Miami on Memorial Day weekend which meant Melissa and her family would be coming down from Brooks, ME and my parents would be coming over. It was the “perfect stress storm” to crash the project and be done.
We, thankfully, brought our crew in. Our crew of Brett, Brian, and Zachary were awesome. Wayne worked along with his crew and the project was finished up quickly. I did not do trim paint as I planned because of the company work schedule and then I came down with a respiratory infection/ flu from hell. It knocked me out of physical commission for a couple of weeks. I hated being down and out, but I was SO thankful for our crew coming in and bailing me out! My super heroes!
The project came out beautiful. I bought new bar stools. We did find the perfect gray wall paint finally. I LOVE this kitchen. I was sad initially in losing my large pantry to make room for dual ovens. But with the extra high cabinetry and pull out draw pantry—it has worked out. This short girl has a nice stool to use when reaching up past the second shelf and I still have not filled up all the shelf space! I love the white color-it is so crisp, clean and welcoming. The stately crown molding added more character to the room. I so love cooking with gas- I really should have made that switch a long time ago!
Kitchen renovations definitely can be stressful and overwhelming but I
- kept an open mind
- love site protection
- tried to remember to breathe
- tried to think ahead (tried is the key word here…) by making selections early so they would be ready for install when the time came.
- texted former clients to vent (very helpful to relate with those who have been through the trenches!)
- took the time to plan a temporary kitchen area (going out to eat will get expensive & going through the “where do you want to go out to eat” dialogue that we all can relate to gets a bit annoying…hahaha!)
- tried to keep good communication with all involved (very important).
The last pieces to completing the puzzle were to tile the backsplash and to paint the walls and trim. Having finally selected the gray wall color we wanted (who knew there were 50 SHADES OF GRAY? – lol) the last decision was the design for installing the tile. We wanted it to be original but not too gaudy or over the top. I mocked up about a dozen different options and ideas. This exercise took about an hour and we found ourselves continually gravitating back to the pattern of aligning the 4x4 tiles in a line horizontally and vertically. Then we assembled four 2”x2” tiles diagonally in the shape of a diamond and installed them in a repeating pattern every eight horizontal tiles.
Within a few hours of starting to install the tiles in that pattern, I knew instantly that we had made the right decision. Sure it took the better part of two weekends and a few week nights to cut and install all those 45 degree angle cuts - but when I was done I stood back and was amazed with the finished product. The icing on the cake was when we grouted the tile with a silver gray grout. It was a lighter color which made the white cabinets and gray tile pop and morph together. What a great feeling when all your efforts come together so perfectly.
Our self imposed deadline was to have the kitchen completely done by the time our daughter Rebecca, and our two granddaughters, came to visit for the Memorial Day holiday weekend. I cheated a little and scheduled my crew to finish up the painting. They two coated the trim; painted the first coat on the walls, and finished up the remaining punchlist items on Thursday. Friday morning we applied the final coat of wall paint, hung some shelves for pictures, and moved the furniture back into place just as Wendy was saying, “We need to leave for the airport to pick them up”. The paint may still have been a little wet on the walls – but we made the deadline!
It has been over six weeks now since we completed the kitchen and I am so happy! One of the things I am most proud of is that I kept my promise to Wendy about fast tracking this project. I told her I would do it and I did! Sure there were bumps in the road along the way: delays because of snow storms, trials and tribulations of finding the right paint and tile colors, even getting tired of going out to eat… but I would do it again without pause because the final product came out so beautiful.
I still occasionally walk into the kitchen and find Wendy just standing there – I ask her if everything is ok. She turns and smiles and says, “I can’t believe the kitchen is finished… and I can’t believe it is mine”.
We are both most critical of ourselves, but when I see that smile I just melt – and I know I hit this one out of the ballpark! :-)