January 19, 2007

Finished Kitchen

So here's one set of before and after pictures and the rest of the after pictures (although we haven't decided on new window treatments yet). We're thrilled with how it all turned out. It was definitely worth doing over Christmas to get the whole thing done so quickly!

January 18, 2007

Kitchen Booth

I've always wanted an eat-in kitchen and especially a booth if possible. It was a tight fit, but we managed to squeeze one in!

I had a surprisingly difficult time finding good pictures and advice on dimensions, but I ended up finding this picture and some great advice in one of Sarah Susanka's Not So Big House books.
And then I found this picture on a blog, which was extremely helpful, but unfortunately I have no idea what blog it was.
So I drew up these plans for the contractor, and everything worked out beautifully.
(Click on these links to view full-size drawings of the end view, side view, and top view.)

First they created a frame with 2x4s.
Then added plywood.
Stained the wood to match the cabinets.
Built a post and added a piece of wood to the wall to support the table top.
The finished booth:
We eat all of our meals here, and the kids love sitting here to color and work on craft projects. It's been a big hit in our family! And when the kids have friends over they usually end up squeezing 3 in on each side.

Kitchen Remodel

Our dumpster was delivered on 12/16. We sent the kids to my mom’s house for the day and tried tearing up the floor ourselves to save a little money. We only made it through some of the tile and a very small portion of the plywood, linoleum, and old hardwood before we finally called our contractor and admitted defeat - we decided we'd gladly pay to have the workers remove the rest of it!
Two days later Ray, Sunshine, and Carlos started work. They quickly removed the rest of the kitchen floor, the dishwasher, and some cabinets. The next day they removed the stove, sink, countertop, and the rest of the cabinets.
Next they began opening up walls and working on electrical stuff.
The first big problem we ran into was that the floor joists above the kitchen are only 4x6's, so the remodeling can lights they had planned on using wouldn't fit. They're going to need to use new construction can lights, which are shallower but require a significantly larger opening to install. So they had to increase all the small, 5" diameter circles they had previously cut in the ceiling into large rectangular openings - not an easy task when you're working with a plaster ceiling.
Our living room was the holding area for our new cabinets, appliances, flooring materials, and light fixtures.Our appliances were delivered on 12/22, and we began using the new refrigerator in our temporary kitchen that we set up in the dining room. We had a microwave and toaster oven, and we used mostly paper plates and cups and plastic utensils.

Ray and Sunshine continued to work on the drywall.
After a final sanding Louie started installing the new hardwood floor.
Ray and Sunshine started installing cabinets on Jan. 4 while Louie continued to work on the floor.
The tile for our backsplash was delivered on Jan. 11. It took three weeks to get here from Spain, and it was the wrong tile! It took several calls, but I eventually got a rush on the correct tile, and it miraculously arrived by the time we needed it!
Sunshine, Ray, and Louie finished up the booth and cabinets (trim pieces, crown molding, baseboards, and knobs and pulls), installed the under-cabinet lights, booth light fixture, dimmer switches, and all the appliances.
The granite countertop was installed on Jan 17, and we love it! We had a really great experience working with Top Resources.

Ray and Sunshine began installing the backsplash tile the next day.The kitchen was completed on Jan. 20 – it took almost exactly one month! We've really been enjoying the booth, and it was great "moving back in" to the kitchen.