Thoughts About our Kitchen Remodel

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Goodbye old kitchen of 15 years.  We didn’t expect to remodel our kitchen so soon.  Our kitchen was in seemingly good condition, and we had plans to redo the kitchen 15-20 years out from now.

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To make a long story short, my husband and I decided to fix our problem area the right way by not bandaging the damage under our sink caused by leaking water, but fixing the problem area starting at the foundation.  It required a full kitchen remodel, recommended by our contractor.

When it comes to making decisions for our home, my husband and I usually see eye to eye on things so decision making is done quickly.

Our kitchen faces north, has one window, and is the farthest room from the sun, so it is one of the darkest rooms in our home.  With that in mind, we wanted to make changes that would increase the amount of light felt in the space.

Our priorities:

  • More light
  • Hide countertop clutter
  • Simple and clean
  • No big design statements
  • Able to accommodate a growing family with young children

Our decisions: All colors and appliances would be white, gray, or stainless steel – we wanted a very clean, simple look.  We didn’t want any strong accents in the kitchen design because our kitchen is historically the most cluttered part of the home, and all the “stuff” in our busy kitchen would aide as the color “accents.”

  • Move the pantry next to the refrigerator and replace it with an extended counter – we wanted all the food to be in the same spot
  • Lower the two-tiered, bar style island to a huge, flat island to open up the space into the kitchen
  • A light colored back splash tile that was not a solid color
  • A really big, coiled faucet to be the key design statement for the island
  • A deeper sink
  • A microwave drawer oven (4-5 times the cost of a regular microwave, but hides the bulk and saves counter space.  Can also be easily used by young children in the future).

Materials/Appliances:

  • Custom white cabinets; melamine engineered wood with horizontal texture
  • Gray speckled counter top; quartz
  • Silver chrome handle bars from Amazon
  • Stainless steel appliances from Amazon, Best Buy, and Lowes
  • A refrigerator with counterdepth because the space can only accommodate a small fridge
  • A modern, commercial style faucet to be the “wow” factor

Total Time: December 27, 2016 to March 22, 2017

  • 1 day to decide on cabinet and counter top material
  • 1 week to pick out appliances
  • 3 weeks to decide on and finalize the kitchen design
  • 7 weeks to have custom cabinets made and shipped to our home
  • 9 full work days for demolition, installation, and completion of the cabinets, counter tops, back splash, and appliances

Final reveal:

kitchen full

Lessons Learned:

  • The kitchen holds a lot of stuff.  When we removed all the contents hiding in our old kitchen for those 9 days, our stuff went into every part of our house except the bedrooms.
  • The experience left me feeling more helpless than stressed.  Having no kitchen meant losing the essentials: a stove, a microwave, a working refrigerator, and a sink for dishes.  The worst part was not getting to do what I do best: provide food for my family, clean up, and do it all again, a few times a day, everyday.  We ate a lot of dry food.
  • We maximized the opportunity by befriending our fellow contractor and his wife.  We learned about their lives.  Most importantly, we sought the opportunity to share our faith with them.  We will definitely be keeping in touch with them as friends!
  • I was able to survive this potential disaster without much stress because I don’t have tendencies of a perfectionist.  I was able to temporarily “let go” of control over my kids and my home for these two weeks without much complaining.  The kids were more adaptable than expected – meaning the “disaster zone” did not lead to more outbursts and uncontrolled behavior I had prepared for.

Closing Thoughts:

We feel very humbled that we have a beautifully remodeled kitchen at a life stage earlier than expected.  Though some might say we deserved this because we “worked hard” for it, this is not something we find value in.  Rather, it makes us consider how we can use this kitchen as a means of ministry to people (including those in our family and those not in our family).  We know that much is required from those who have been given much.

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2 thoughts on “Thoughts About our Kitchen Remodel

  1. I really enjoyed reading this post! Seeing behind-the-scenes really interests me, and I’m encouraged to hear your purpose and motivation for the way you use your home.

    Like

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