The Ceiling Debacle

I'm still working on the drawers for the dresser. My mistake last week was putting the varnish on outside, in the humidity. Four days later it still hadn't really dried. We brought them in Thursday night and miraculously, they were ready for another coat of varnish by Friday night. This morning I got up and put on a third coat, and they should be ready to put back in the dresser tomorrow. This has also allowed the chalk paint to have plenty of time to cure. A small bonus. 

I decided to tackle the ceiling this weekend. Mainly because there isn't a lot I can get done in the room until the ceiling is repainted. 

Here is the almost blank slate I'm working with:

This is the view of the room from his door. The closet is to your right. It currently has the dresser, his desk, and his bin-o-stuff in it so I can paint. From this angle, the carpet doesn't look too bad. Sadly, that's far from the truth. Also, the walls were refreshed with paint three years ago, but this boy is apparently very hard on his room, and it looks dingy and gross. You can also see the water damage up above the window. Here's a close up:

This morning, after we cleared everything out of the room, I was really confident I would just put on a coat of primer, let it dry, and then paint the ceiling. What cold be simpler?

6 hours later and three coats of primer later, here is what I'm still dealing with:
It's....better. But it's not fixed.  And it certainly doesn't look like I've painted on three coats of primer! I'm going to put on yet ANOTHER coat here in a few minutes and hope that does the trick. Seriously, it was just a leaky tube that allowed water to drip onto the ceiling. Why the Zinser primer isn't covering these spots completely is the burning question right now. So back upstairs I go to paint on primer. Again...

Drawers

We start out with...a photo of me.

September in Houston is still pretty humid. Since I'm staining drawers today, being inside was not an option. I contemplated putting it off another week, but really, the humidity isn't likely to be any better. And the longer I take to finish, the less likely I will get it done before Christmas.

So the photo. Somehow you can't really see it, but I was a hot mess after sanding down the drawers this morning. I almost never sweat, even in the humidity. So my youngest was shocked to see it dripping down my forehead. He felt a picture was warranted. You know, with nothing but moisturizer and lip balm on, sweaty hair pulled back in a ponytail, feeling super gross. But I took it to humor him. And then he said to make sure I posted it with all my other photos I was taking. Clearly, he has a twisted sense of humor.

So let's to what we really came here for. Drawers.

This is what I started with. Five drawers that had seen better days. About three years ago, he stuck some stickers all over the front of the drawers. I really tried scraping them off, but to no avail. Yesterday The Builder came to the rescue and took off most of the residue with the isopropyl alcohol he uses for cleaning metal at work. Thank goodness, as I have no idea where my goo gone has gone! (yes, I said that intentionally)

When I went to Home Depot to pick up my standard orange varnish remover, it wasn't there. There wasn't even a spot where it was sold out. I admit I wasn't patient enough to flag someone down and see if they had it in the back, or if it was in a different spot. I did a quick review of my product options and went with this:

First off. This stuff worked GREAT. I was able to get off all the varnish the first go around (except for one, that I forgot to strip, and had to re-apply this morning...oops). But. This stuff is seriously toxic. The directions tell you to wear safety goggles and gloves. Ahem. I didn't do that. Not only did I ignore that, I was wearing shorts and was barefooted (#humidityisakiller) When I use this the next time, and I have a ton left over, I will not make that mistake again. I was very careful while applying it, but I got a few tiny little splashes on my fingers and toes.  And it BURNS. I quickly rinsed in cold water, and there are no marks, but I understand why they tell you to wear protective gear. 

So after a quick scrape with a plastic scraper, here is what my drawers initially looked like:

I will admit. I was sort of freaking out. The stain I bought was a little darker because I know I have scratches and gouges that will not sand out. It's not super dark, but it is more forgiving. But picturing putting a medium toned stain over this very orange looking pine did not make me excited. I knew that I still needed to sand everything down and was hoping that that would do the trick. 

Sometimes you really do get lucky!

About 95% of the old stain sanded out perfectly! There are some spots around the edge that even with a wool brush, I just couldn't scrape out. But I wasn't looking for perfection for this project. This chest of drawers has survived three boys over a 10+ year time period. If I really wanted perfect, I'd have to buy something new. Which means we'd just build it. At this point in time, that's completely unnecessary as these are still in excellent condition. 

Here's a quick shot of some of the sanded drawers: 

Night and day difference. 

Again, while this happened to have been an inexpensive pine chest of drawers when I bought it, it is all real wood. It was worth the time to refinish. That being said, I think my hand was ready to fall off by the time I was done sanding! I forgot we bought an orbital sander a year or so ago and I bought sandpaper for our ancient old electric sander. It certainly got the job done easy enough, but it was murder on my hand.

I used a Minwax stain. I have to say, I'm not a huge fan of Minwax. I greatly prefer Rustoleum stains. However, it has become increasingly difficult to find it except on Amazon, where it's double the cost of what I used to pick up for at Lowes. I need to try my local Ace Hardware and see if they carry it.

If you follow me on Instagram, you already saw this photo. But I'm super pleased at how these came out. I initially brushed on a heavy coat of stain (I wanted to make sure I was getting into all the cracks and crevices that did not sand out) and then wiped it off with a towel. All they need now is a coat of satin varnish. I'm hoping to get that done today, but it will depend on how quickly the stain dries. I may bring them in the house for a bit to speed up the drying time since I don't think the fumes will be as bad now. 

I'm ordering these cup pulls for D Lawless Hardware:

When he picked out the paint for the dresser, we took a look to see what hardware was available. He really liked this style and they're easy to get. At $5 a piece, they're not terribly expensive. However, at D Lawless, they're under $2 a piece. I've ordered from them before and have always been very pleased with the quality. Since I still plan to have a built in desk in his closet, I'm going to order enough for that as well for a more cohesive look. I will need to drill new holes to install these, but that's a minor fix. 

Once the dresser is done, I'm The Builder going to tackle painting the ceiling, then we can get to the walls. The ceiling stains from the leaking a/c tubing are driving me crazy and paint is an easy fix. We will probably install the new floors after we paint the ceiling, but before we do the walls. 

More to come!

Summer Hiatus

I've been absent since June with my daughter's graduation. I can't even say that I did a single project over the summer. Because I didn't. The Builder was completely burnt out on projects by the time our friends and family were done visiting. Plus his work really picked up due to the backlog from the rain. In a perfect world, I would have enjoyed the time off...but my work picked up as well and I was behind on some school work. So it ended up being a busy summer.

But!

I need to get back to things that still need to be done around my house. And so with the beginning of September and fall around the corner (not that that will make one difference here in Houston!) I'm jumping back in. I have a few projects planned:
  • Updating my youngest sons' bedroom
  • Adding media storage in our master bedroom
  • building an upholstered headboard for our bed
Updating my sons' room is more of a chore than it may seem. Last year we had a tube from the a/c leak and cause water spots on his ceiling. He managed to break the cheap faux blinds in his room. He managed to peel the texture off on a spot on his wall. His closet doors fell off the track and broke. His carpet is in desperate need of replacing. I didn't realize it was that bad until my family came out to visit. Suddenly no matter how much we shampooed the carpet, I couldn't get the pet smell out. It was NOT good. There was also nothing I could do once I realized it. So I've spent my summer buying flooring, one box at a time. I thought we would get it done this weekend, but my dogs decided it would be fun to tear down the fence that separates our yard from our neighbors. So The Builder and our boys spent the day tearing down the rotted out fence and installing a new one. 

Since I couldn't do the floors myself, I decided to tackle a project I could do. His dresser.  Years ago, when he was around three, he and his brothers took a sharpie marker to the side of the dresser and drew on it. I kept that side tucked in the corner of the room for a long time, but when we moved to this house, that wasn't an option. So I've been living with it that way for almost 5 years.  Take a look:

Yeah. I wasn't happy. And I know no amount of sanding is really going to get all of that black sharpie out. Or if it does, it will be uneven. But the dresser is solid wood, no cheap particle board. And he hates to hang up his things. He likes everything folded and uses all his drawers. I would eventually love to build him a new one (and have plans saved to my Pinterest board!) but I have other building projects that I want to get done first. This is a solid dresser. It just needed some updating. I finally decided that I wanted to use chalk paint on the body of the dresser, which would cover up ALL those sharpie marks, but I am going to strip and re-stain the drawer fronts. 

Now my youngest is the MOST particular out of my four children. There was no way I was going to choose a paint color without his input because if I got one he didn't like, I would never live it down. Blue is his favorite color, but I didn't want anything that was a bright or pastel blue. I was thinking a navy blue would be a nice color. We headed to Home Depot today to get paint, and while he was all for the blue (actually, he liked his dresser just the way it was and had no interest in painting or updating it!) he ultimately chose a color called Inked, which had a touch of gray to it. I can totally work with that, and it will also be the color we paint the interior of his closet. But that's another post. 

I have to say, the chalk paint was SUPER easy. My wonderful friend, The Magnificent M, shared her chalk paint recipe with me, and it was a dream to use. I've read that most people only need one coat, but I felt that was a bit streaky, and used two. No issues there, it was still super simple and I used less than 2 cups of paint to do the entire dresser. I have plenty left over for the closet. 

And here is body of the dresser all painted:

Forgive the poor lighting. It was late afternoon and I can't open his blinds more than half way. This lighting is the result of an overhead ceiling fan light and even then, I still needed the flash on my phone. 

We both anticipated the color to be a little darker, but in the end, we are both really happy with it. Even better, he told me it looks MUCH better now that it's painted and he's glad I "made" him let me paint it. Maybe there is hope for this boy yet. 

This is as far as I got today. The drawers have stickers all over the front of them. I tried scraping them off, but apparently, sticker glue turns into super glue once it's on wood. I have goo gone... somewhere. And I know it will take it off with no issues. But I need to find it.  Then I have to put the stripper on to take the light coat of varnish off that it currently has, lightly sand, and re-stain the drawers. Oh, and I need to buy new drawer pulls. Apparently, he has only one left. And no clue what happened to the other four. Seriously, looking at his room, you would never guess it had fresh paint, new draperies, and was updated just four years ago. But I digress...

Here's a quick peak at the drawers I pulled out so I could paint today:

That's what's left of the stickers I could not get off. In addition, there is still sticker residue. So the goo gone is a must. 

I'm pretty sure I'm going to paint his room the same perfect greige the rest of the house is painted. I have it on hand so it's and easy update. His desk is going to go into his closet (which he doesn't currently use) and will look something like this:

I found directions for this on The Happy Housie and I love the overall look. My youngest saw it and immediately vetoed the stenciling, the nautical decor, and anything "school" related. I assured him it will accurately reflect his tastes and personality. His closet is much larger, so he's requesting a bookcase in it as well, so I need to figure out how to incorporate that. I may do two Rast drawers, one for each side, for added storage as well. I really like that I can stain them to match the dresser for a coordinated look. This photo is just my jumping off point, his actual design will be 100% tailored to him.

I'm contemplating a new quilt (his preference) and used the SnapIt tool to pull the colors from it:

The Charcoal Blue in the chip color is very similar to the Inked color by Behr. The other colors are great accents for his room and really reflect him. 

Budget wise, this is still low cost. The built in closet desk I'm estimating at about $100 (two Rast dressers, the desktop, hardware, and task lighting). The flooring  is about $150 for the whole room (which we've been buying a little at a time). New blinds will run another $50 or so. We're debating bi-fold doors to replace the sliding closet doors. Well. I wanted barn doors. Which he quickly vetoed. He's not a "farm" type of guy. I found some neat engineered prints I can have done for his room, so about another $40 for artwork. If I buy the quilt in the photo, I'm looking at about $450 for the room altogether. I'd also like to replace the drapes that my cats love to be trapeze artists on with a cornice board valance. I don't have a cost estimate on this, and since the blinds are an immediate necessity, the cornice is something we can do later. 

Cross your fingers I can get the drawers done tomorrow and have a whole project done in one weekend!

Master Bath Completion

After months of getting just a little done at a time (probably because we started the kitchen project!) we are finally done in our Master Bathroom!  Just a quick reminder, here is what we started with:



So yeah, it was definitely in need of some updating!  So here we are now...

By pushing out the shower to make it decent sized, we lost some of the space between the vanities. But that wasn't a bad thing in the end. We bought these two Hermes vanities at Ikea, and I found this rolling cart. It's the perfect for the space and adds a lot of storage, as you'll see below.

Our tub now. While I absolutely love our new shower, the bathtub is still my favorite! This is a 72 inch tub and it is SO spacious. For the first time in my life I can soak my entire body in the tub and then some. No more loud jets that spray everywhere or a tub that can't hold water. It is the perfect size for the space.

 I'm really pleased that nothing is crammed in. It feels spacious even with the shower extension. 

I took these photos at night, so the lighting isn't cooperating with my camera.  The Builder's vanity has the CFL day light bulbs. We both agree, we hate them. I plan to switch them all to the LED bulbs soon, but this works temporarily. 

Still fighting the lighting in here. This is the new light fixture we chose for the vanities. They have the same chrome finish the shower, vanity, and bath tub fixtures have, so it all coordinates together. I didn't think I wanted to chrome, but it's sparkly and pretty. I'm pleased.

The rolling cart again. So the vanities don't have a lot of counter space. Particularly for my big electric toothbrush and water pick (my dentist swears I need this and after what I've spent there this year, I'm willing to try). It also holds things like my hair dryer and flat iron, that I use consistently. I really like this because my chords don't get tangled up! Also things don't get lost or pushed to the back. Super convenient.  

So this is a perfect example of why you should look at your space before you get ready to complete a blog post. The towel on the left is mine. It's one of the new ones I bought. The towel on the right is The Builders. I always hang my towel neatly. He...doesn't. Sigh. But this is the new shower curtain as well. I can't afford the frameless shower door right now, but I really like this new shower curtain in here.

Last but not least, my vanity. The shower is on the other side of the wall. I plan to put up a small towel ring for a hand towel or my washcloth. You can see that there is a decent amount of counter space. I can easily get ready in the morning. The biggest adjustment has been the shallower sink. But it's not a deal breaker.

With the odd angles of the room, it's actually difficult to get a shot of the entire bathroom. But it's still super spacious and now completely updated. And it's so nice to have another project completed!

99.9% Done...

It's been a month since my last post. You'd think my kitchen reno would be done.  And for the most part, it is. All the tile work is done, the cabinets have all been refinished, and we even managed to get everything back into the cupboards (how is it that it seemed like we had more stuff than was actually in there to begin with?!). 
For some reason, the cabinets look white in photo's. They're not.  They're two shades down on my color chart from the wall paint. In person, you can see the contrast between the trim and cabinets, but not so much in the photos. I am LOVING the tile back splash with the counters!

So why 99.9% done?

First the obvious. The cabinet door. I have to buy a new one. The one that was there cannot be replaced. Since the shipping is about the same cost as the door, I have been procrastinating, looking for a local source. So far, no luck. So I plan to order it this week. 

Second, the cabinet door knobs. You can see the drawer pulls, but there are no knobs on the cabinet doors. Because I haven't bought them yet. New hardware totaled at about $85. Not really a bad price, but I have a senior graduating from high school, prom, and the senior's 18th birthday around the corner. So, I've been buying hardware a bit at a time. All the drawer pulls are bought, so I'll do the same with the cabinet knobs. 

I didn't put the valance up in this photo either, but I have it. I kept the red one I was using before because it works perfectly. 
I love my pops of red! 

So this is the end of kitchen "refresh" that basically was a total makeover. I'm happy to say...

The End

Did You Say Tile?

My post yesterday may gave led you to conclude that the front door was all we got done this past weekend. In fact, the door was done two weekends ago, and we've been working on the slow and grueling task of painting cabinets. It's not the most fun part of the renovation.

Last week The Builder was being incredibly stubborn particular about the tile we need to replace in our master bedroom. You see when we ripped out the first vanity months ago, we discovered that when they re-tiled, they only retiled up to the vanity, not under it. And since we've had a change of plan on the bathroom vanities, this is a problem.

Let's go back a few weeks.  The Builder and I decided that do to time constraints, we're not going to build the vanities. I really wanted something custom, but by the time we build the vanity, order the doors with the over priced shipping! and order the granite top with the dual sinks, plus the hardware, it's a time consuming chore we don't have time for. We've decided on an alternative, which I will share in another post.  But we were at a local tile store looking for a match when we found a tile that would be perfect for a back splash in our kitchen.

A back splash that we hadn't any plans to do.

But it was perfect. And after a brief discussion, we decided we only needed to do small strip above the laminate back splash to extend it up. We were confident the additional six inches would be perfect. So we bought what we needed and ran a test strip today:

And...I hate it. The Builder wasn't to fond of it either. Looking through some of my favorite inspiration sites, I realized that modern kitchens have the tile going from the counter to the cabinet and behind the stove. Not a wimpy little strip like this.

So Sunday morning, we headed back to the tile store to get enough to do the back splash properly.

Here's where we went with:

Yeah, it's much better tiled all the way up. Of course, it added extra work to the scope of our project. We had bought new outlets because someone had painted over the ones that were there. But with the tile, we needed a different cover so they would be flush with the tile. And the tile has to be cut around the outlets. As do the light switches. So while these are on a sheet that make it easier to install, The Builder had to make a bunch of small cuts to get it all to look right.

So as the end of the weekend, here is where we are with the kitchen:

I can't even imagine why I thought a small strip of tile would look better than this! Even our kids were impressed. And impressing teenagers with another home renovation project is a hard thing to do! There are still a bunch of small cuts to do around the window, as well as one more strip of tile to go on the other side of the window, but once that's done, and we've grouted, all we'll have left to do is put the cabinet doors back on (that are all painted!), refresh the trim, and put everything back.

This project wasn't as fast, or as budget friendly, as I had planned it to be, but we're getting a lovely updated kitchen when it's done and we're super excited about it!

Kitchen Paint, Cabinets and - oh my gosh!

The Builder and I had a conversation last night. There I was, drawing up a to do list for the weekend so we had a starting place, when out of the blue he said he didn't want to build the doors for the new vanity in the bathroom, he just wanted to order them and be done.

Apparently cabinet doors are a pain to make. (and while Ana White makes it look super easy to build cabinets, she bought doors to go with them - even my dad, Ultimate Builder, bought new cabinets for our kitchen reno when I was a kid.) We meed four for the bathroom vanity (that we are not starting for several more weeks) and one of the lower kitchen cabinet doors is badly damaged and my not be worth repairing (water damage - of course). 

Have you priced replacement cabinet doors? Surprisingly, they're fairly affordable. So I put what I needed in my cart and proceeded to check out. And then I stopped.  The shipping was $45. Umh. No way. There's no glass, they don't have a special finish that could get damaged in shipping (we were ordering them all unfinished), and they're not very heavy. There is no reason that shipping should be that much. Even when I took off the four for the vanity and just left the one for the kitchen, the $32 door had a $31 shipping cost. That's just stupid.

So we headed to my favorite treasure trove, ReStore, to see if we could find something that would match. They have piles of cabinet doors, but nothing that would work for our cabinet. We were headed out when the The Builder stopped at bin of doors, reached in, and pulled one out.

It was. The One.

Do you recall this post where we painted the door red? Because the door I really wanted from Lowes came in at almost $600. It wasn't in my budget then, and it's not in my budget now. But the red made me happy and I got positive comments from my neighbors, so it was a good solution.

But I wanted the one with the leaded star, similar to this
The star is what I really loved. And the one on display at my local Lowes was a rectangular window with the door red. For $569. Like I said, a budget buster for us given the renovations we have going on.

But there we were, at ReStore, and The Builder reached in and pulled out my red, leaded glass star door! In fact, it was actually a display door from Lowes and may have been the very same door that I admired for months, since Lowes is right down the street. All for the budget friendly price of $150!!!

Needless to say, we put a hold on it (had to check the dimensions to ensure it would work in our actual door!) and came back within 20 minutes to get it. And it is perfect! It did take some goo gone and a little elbow grease to clean off all the stickers from the Lowes display and the foam stickers from where it was mounted, but it was completely worth it. It also put a hamper on all projects that weekend as The Builder still had to do some frame modifications for it to fit properly, including building a new threshold.  Totally worth it though!
And a close up:
So, no kitchen updates for the last two weeks. But this door is amazing!!

Hmm, now we're going to need to paint the door trim too...

Better Late Than Never


This kitchen refresh has been s-l-o-w go. Really thought we'd be done by now. But we're not.

Thankfully, we are making progress! The repairs in the bay window are done, we've completed painting, the new blinds are in, and the curtains have been hung. It's really coming along now. You may notice that there are not baseboards. Those are still being repainted. The little things that take forever drive me crazy sometimes.

The counter tops are in and we're really very happy with them. You can see the new sink cabinet that we bought (and the small cabinet to the right, which still needs to the drawer front to be painted). Again, you can see that we're not done. We're not done painting and the upper cabinets are still white. See the vanilla colored paint we're paining over? It does make for a bright kitchen, but we are just not vanilla paint colored people!

The new sink. I LOVE it. It is amazing that we managed with the undersized sink as long as we did. I was hoping that for the final renovation, we'd install a farmhouse sink, but I may just end up keeping this one. I am that happy with! 

And the faucet. That faucet is worth every penny we paid for it. We have real water pressure again. Who knew?

The not so glamorous photo. You can really see here that we're not done paining. Also the doors are not on the lower cabinets and we haven't even started the upper cabinets. Sometimes there are really just not enough hours in the day.

The other side. Again, not good. This whole section is going to be expanded into more pantry. The hodge podge of stuff sitting out is driving me crazy. There is a coat closet behind this wall that just holds junk. We have to clean it out yearly and I'm always surprised at what we find. Because we don't use it! So we're going to enlarge the pantry, that you can catch a glimpse of to the left, so that we have more space in the kitchen where it's needed. Yes, the door is off the pantry. This whole section could pass for open concept, which I hate. I have big plans for updating and expanding this pantry!

So this weekend, the plan is to get the rest of the painting done, and at least paint the cabinet frames. The Builder has been sanding and priming the doors all week, so if I'm really lucky, we'll get cabinets closed up before the end of the weekend.

Because I really hate open concept cabinets and shelves!!

Wallpaper & Water

In every project we've taken on since buying this house, we've run into two problems. Water damage and wallpaper that was painted over. The kitchen, of course, is no exception.

The renovation has been very slow go since Christmas due to a sudden pick up in work for The Builder. While we appreciate the overtime monetarily, the timing is far from ideal. 

Today I asked The Builder (on his one day off) if would mind finishing up the painting in the bay window area so I could at least get the curtains up and feel like I'm making some progress. He reluctantly agreed, because painting would only take an hour or two, and then we could watch football playoffs. A win-win.

So he was prepping around the windows this morning, and discovered that the entire area around the windows was wallpapered and painted over

















OK, a minor inconvenience, but not as bad as it could be, we've definitely had worse.

The original home builders wallpapered directly over the drywall. No primer, nothing. So most of this came out in big long strips, which made it very easy to peel off. For once. There were some small areas that someone did peel at one point in time, but gave up. Those sections were heavily textured (like in our master bathroom) but we've learned to make quick work of that with a sander. So not so bad.

Again, traces of the old, 80's wallpaper. You may recall that we've estimated that the kitchen has gone through at least four color rehabs since it was built.  Every single color was painted over the wallpaper. The Builder said he thinks it's probably at about 10 coats of paint. Ugh.

Still, just happy that this section doesn't involve any water damage, like the sink area.

Or so I thought....

















So when pealing the last of the wallpaper from the baseboards, the drywall started crumbling. After removing the baseboard, this is what we came across.

It's not terrible. It's also all dry, so it's not recent. From what we can best guess, the window leaked at some point and water traced in and down wall into the baseboard. When the initial kitchen renovation was done, they filled a small hole, then painted over everything. But we didn't really want to do a patch job when there's a wide amount of damage. So The Builder spent the rest of the afternoon cutting out the drywall from under the middle and right windows, and replacing it, as well as sanding down the rough texture on the last wall.

We also decided to go ahead and replace the broken and stained faux wood blinds. We're replacing them with exactly what was there as the whole house has these blinds. The window over the sink will eventually have one as well. I like privacy the kitchen window not having any blinds has always bugged me. 

So we ended today with patching in the new drywall and the bay window area primed and ready for mud a texture. 

Counter Tops....

If there were any doubts about replacing our cabinets in the future, take a quick look at this:

All along I thought the wood grain was something similar to contact paper.  I was wrong.  It's more like rice paper, it is SO thin. 

Not that there was ever really a doubt. This kitchen has the worst cabinets of any kitchen I have ever been in. Clearly this wasn't an area the builder or the original home owners wanted to spend any money in. That's OK thought, it's my diamond in the rough and it's going to be lovely when I'm finished, even with just the soft reno.

This faux wood grain is on the outside of all the cabinets. You can see at the bottom of the panel that it's completely rotted out. Goodbye ugly and gross cabinet!

Yesterday we set the new counter on the replaced sink cabinet. We wanted an idea of how it was going to look with the wall and cabinet paint colors. I'm super excited as it looks as good in person as I was picturing it in my head.  This quick photo doesn't begin to do it justice. I think what I like best is the warm grey tones warmed up the kitchen. 

Today we did a dry fit with the new sink:
We haven't taken the protective shrink wrap off yet. Can you see how much deeper the new sink is? Even though it's not the farm sink I'm pining for, this is going to be much more practical for our family. 

At the moment The Builder is prepping the two corner pieces of the new counter tops:
K, not an exciting photo. But those bolts are key to getting the counter leveled properly, which is super important. Once the glue dries (we used Locktite Wood Liquid Nails) the counter will be ready to install. Since we're still living with the small two foot section the right of the stove as our only counter space, the whole family is now anxious for this counter to be installed. Also it means we can move on to fixing all the doors for the lower cabinets and get things put back in place. My house looks like a war zone between all the Christmas stuff that is still out and the boxes of kitchen stuff from the lower cabinets. Living in a reno zone is never fun, but I didn't contemplate reno zone AND Christmas stuff prior to demoing the kitchen. 

By the end of today, I figure we'll be 50% finished with the renovation project. We still need to fix a few of the lower cabinet doors, prime and paint them, install the new hinges, and then move on to the upper cabinets. But we're not expecting any water damage issues, so that portion should go fairly quick!

When the Bad Gets Worse...

The last two days, The Builder has been priming the cabinets for paint. I was willing to wait until the weekend, but we've got tickets to the football game on Sunday and we'll loose a solid day of work. So he didn't want to waste any time this week.

The worst cabinet in our kitchen by far was the sink cabinet:
Under the Sink
That board in the bottom was replaced when we bought the home in 2013. The prior bottom was rotted out and we couldn't really use the cabinet for storage. 

So you can imagine our surprise when we pulled out the bottom to repaint it and found this:

Umh.  Yuck!!









And let's not forget the other side:

Those pieces on the floor?  That's the rotted right side of the cabinet. It pulled right out when The Builder took the bottom out. And the smell. It's terrible. The kids even noticed. Gross is an understatement.

So we had a decision to make. 

Replacing all of the cabinets is still completely out of the budget.

But replacing one cabinet maybe wasn't such a bad idea.


Umh, two may not be a bad idea either! Thankfully they're on sale at the orange home improvement store so we headed out to pick them up. They'll get a coat of primer and then paint. You may have noticed that we're ditching the drawers on the smaller of the cabinets in favor of a door. When we bought our new stove, we lost the bottom drawer that we used to store our baking pans. We planned to find a place to store them once the kitchen reno was done - maybe in the new pantry we plan to build this spring. But now I'll use this cabinet space and it will be much more efficient for us. We never used all four drawers. We have drawers on the other side of the kitchen that were filled with junk. So we'll do some reorganizing and this cabinet will work much better for us. 

As to "The Plan" all but the new cabinets are primed and have the first coat of paint on. So all in all, not bad for the first two days of work!

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