Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Remodeling Update - The Kitchen

The contract stated that work should take 3 - 4 weeks to complete. Work started on May 6th. We're now 10 days past the deadline. Let's focus on the kitchen for a moment.

~The lights haven't been put in yet, so this is a really dark photo. We will have to touch-up paint on the doors where sanding the new wall behind the fridge caused paint to peel.~

~Same basic shot, just taken with the cell-phone camera. Lights are in & we're very happy there is a dimmer switch!! This is with them as bright as they get, note the fan light still isn't on.~

~This Mexican Star light just got put up today! I've been wanting one for years, and we finally got one after our very antique pull-down, cast-iron lamp got broken. I think the star light looks better there than the other one would've, but that doesn't mean I'm not still mourning the loss of the other light~

The lights are now, FINALLY, all in. Really, I was beginning to doubt they would all get put up! The ceiling is done, minus the molding that will go around it. That should go up at the beginning of next week. Josh is, hopefully, staining the molding tomorrow. So, we'll see.

~Well, at least the new gas stove is in the kitchen and working! But check out the clutter & missing cabinet/counters!~

The stove finally made it's way out of the front room of the house and into the kitchen, where after about a week, it finally got hooked up. The new vent, which will vent the heat outside (the current vent just blows it all back in!) is still sitting in it's box in the front room.
This is my first gas stove. What do I think of it? I LOVE this stove. It's so cool, and it makes me feel like a proper cook. However, there are some downsides, at least temporary transitional ones:
1) Gas stoves put out a LOT of heat!! I was boiling potatoes today and felt like there was a roaring fire in the kitchen!! This fact is NOT helped by 90 degree and humid-as-hell days, nor having a house that doesn't have AC, nor the vent being in the front room. I'm REALLY keeping my fingers crossed that the new, more powerful, vent will suck a lot of the heat outside. Till then, I'm trying to count the blessings of being Southern and sweaty.
2) It friggin' takes FOREVER for water to boil!! The first thing I tried cooking was pasta. I put the lid on the pot (set to whistle when the water boiled). It never whistled, the water eventually over-flowed (which puts out the damn flame but leaves the gas on), and the pasta was very well-done! -- I'm hoping that, with time, I'll just get used to it and adjust my cooking times. I mean, I used to have really slow dial-up on my old computer and I learned to sign on, go make myself a nice cup of hot tea, and by the time I got back I might almost be online. It never bothered me. Hopefully this will be similar.
3) Things take longer to cook on the stove-top. This really isn't such a pain, just an interesting learning curve. But I wanted to include it as a "beware if you're trying to fry an egg or something" and you're not familiar with gas stoves.

I love my new stove though. Despite the current downsides, the stove rocks. The bottom drawer is a warming drawer by the way. That'll come in handy come the holidays!! AND, the stove is a 5 burner stove, with the 5th burner being a long oval burner in the center. The stove came with a cast iron piece to put there that is a griddle on one side and a grill on the other. Oh yea, it rocks.

One thing I am REALLY not liking though is the clutter. It is driving me up one wall and down another and straight into hiding in the closet or bathtub (I hide in weird spots). There is practically NO work room right now. We're out of spaces to store stuff as well because we can't put anything else in the dining room until the pantry cabinet gets put in the back hallway. Can't store it on the extra shelving in the laundry room until the tool cabinet gets put in the back hallway.
Every time I turn around it seems like I bump into something, knock something over, or lose something. It is depressing, aggravating, maddening (and not in the good way), and I am not certain how much more I can take. On my good days I feel like Tom Hanks in The Money Pit.

On the other days my sense of humor about it all is lost and I listen to Johnny Cash & Ray Charles sing "Busted" and I cry and sing along.

Harmon is building the kitchen cabinets this week, and they should begin going in on Friday. He's working on Saturday, which he ought to be saying he took off Monday for personal reasons, and hopes to have most of the tile laid on the counters by the end of the day on Saturday.
Today was a rough day, I wasn't amused and the delays are getting on my nerves. Which leads me to my next point: the extra costs of renovation.

Everyone says to expect it to cost more. So far, financially speaking, the extra costs have come in that some of our older appliances (deep freezer, old toilet) have suddenly had to be replaced. The true extra costs are on your nerves. The effect of the clutter. Of not knowing what is going to be happening from day to day. Of thinking that __x__ is getting done on Monday but it doesn't get done till Wednesday a week or two later.
Of the cost of take-out food!! UGH!!! I HATE TAKE-OUT FOOD!!! I WANT REAL FOOD!! This has proven a lot harder to accomplish than I thought. I thought I could work around them. I was wrong. Real food takes time. From day to day I don't know what I'll be able to access or when I will be able to access it. The deep freezer (where meat is stored) might be pushed with it's door up against the wall (so they can sand the floor under it). No getting meat out early enough for dinner there. The floor might have just gotten another coat of sealant on it. No getting into the kitchen to make some quick lunch today! Every time I drive to McDonald's to get food I am filled with disgust and anger. Mostly all of it directed at myself for not better planning so that we could've avoided having to go there. Excuses can be made, but when it comes down to it, they're still just excuses, and I am full of guilt and self-anger over it. And I long, long, long to make some good ole biscuits in my new oven. For the room to roll out the dough. For real food, slow food, homemade food.

Slowly, it is all coming along. The work that is done is fantastic. It is just taking a lot longer than I expected, despite warnings from those who've "been there and done that" that it would, that it always does. Guess I hoped that a tanked economy that nobody was building in would result in contractors that were happy for the work and would be trying harder to sell themselves.
The kitchen really is looking fantastic and I do love going in there and seeing the things that have been done. The dogs love it too. The tile floor is apparently much cooler than the wooden floors.

I will try my best to retain my sanity and not turn into the mega-bitch that many people know I can be and that my ex-husband REALLY knows I can be.

1 comment:

Carole and Chewy said...

Oh now I know why I liked you from the start - I, too, can be a mega-bitch! And my current husband knows it! Remodeling is the worst - if you can get through this, you can get through anything.
Really. I promise.