Posted in Kitchen Reno

After the Long Weekend

I’m having a much better idea of why renovations take so much longer in real life than they do on HGTV.

  1. No giant team helping.
  2. We are both 47 years old. The body just HURTS a lot more than it used to!

We removed all the cabinets and counter tops (except the sink and dishwasher–wanted to keep them as long as possible). Someone came and picked them up so they are gone. All the rest of the construction debris is on a tarp on our driveway. We pulled up all the flooring and hammered hundreds and hundreds of staples back down. We pulled down the soffit in the middle of the room and 1/3 of the soffit along the north wall. Happily, we discovered it had nothing in it where we removed it. We discovered that there is a small section of vent that we need to hopefully re-route. If we can’t re-route it, we will need to cut out the back of one of the cabinets to make room.

Here was Sunday evening (flooring to be explained below) where you can still see soffit:

End of Date Sun May 29

Here’s where we are as of today, where you can see the piece of vent pipe.End of Date Mon May 30

So here’s the deal with the flooring. In 1985, someone decided to build this house. Someone didn’t care about code and didn’t care about doing thing correctly. Instead of 2×10 floor joists, someone put in whatever size he could find, anything from 2×8 3/4 to 2×9 1/4. Right next to each other. Consequently, our floors are horrible out of level. I mean REALLY badly. 12? years ago Jim tried to level it using what is called “self-leveling cement”. I just tried to keep three kids under 3 outside. The whole process was awful and didn’t work very well. Our flooring that went over all that mess ended up actually cracking down a long line due to the out-of-level.

This time around the internet and wonderful DIY blogs exist. And YouTube. People who have used self-leveler over whole rooms are there. Videos, pictures, step-by-step instructions. We will be doing this again. Together. And hopefully will end up with a wonderful clean surface to start installing new flooring over.

Hopefully. We’ll see.

Posted in Kitchen Reno

The Day is Here!

Jim and I are both up and puttering around before we start. There’s a few final things to do before we can use the crowbar–namely taking apart our dining table and putting it in the living room, moving our pie safe (essentially food storage) into the mudroom, and find homes for a few odds and ends that are still on the counter. Oh, and take pictures! I will definitely be posting more now that we’re here.

Just as a reminder, here are a few “Before” pics.


Posted in Family, Kids, Kitchen Reno, Me, Overbrook

Why I Am OK About Rescheduling

So last week my husband asks how would I feel about changing the date that we start the reno from May 21st to May 28th. How did I feel?? NOT HAPPY. But yeah, I love my husband and the ONLY reason we chose the date we did is because it worked around his work schedule (which is crazy this year because of an audit that he is, essentially, running). And that schedule changed and that week no longer worked. So yeah, I worked through the not happiness and it became fine. Really.

And then it became so much better than fine because this, THIS my friends, is my week:

Sunday: Jim and Neighbor uninstall sliding glass door, frame in extra wall space and install new “full glass” (which ISN’T FULL GLASS) door. In between, fiddle with PC that we have had to install new hard drive on and therefore reload every freaking thing including thousands of updates onto. And yes, I ended that with a preposition.

Monday: Fiddle with PC more. Make menu, grocery list, add coupon software, print coupons, get gas, grocery shop, unload, lunch, rant about kids’ cyber school software program giving error codes at the end of the progress check and then rejoice at the rescheduled progress check, realize a chipmunk is in our house and try FOR HOURS to try and catch it. Pick up neighbor child from bus stop. Neighbor mother try to catch chipmunk. Fail. Make dinner, take Bennett to robotics, go to bed.

Tuesday: Carpool run to CPFA (Laura) and USP (Catie). Finally get Quicken to work on PC. Gather three trash bags’ worth of laundry and go to laundromat for 1 hr 5 minutes ($17) and catch up rather quickly. 🙂 Lunch for Bennett and me. Go to CPFA, get Laura, drop Bennett and Laura off for Algebra Keystones. Go to paint store and get paint for kitchen. Go to Entemann’s outlet and get donuts as a special treat for kids this week. Pick up Laura and Bennett and go home.Get home only to realize that 1) chipmunk is still in house and 2) dogs are VERY aware of this fact and have torn apart various parts of our house trying to get at it. When Jim gets home we finally join forces, use a crabbing net that I didn’t know we owned and catch the darn thing. Out it goes.

Wednesday (plans only at this point): Home in morning (put away all that laundry, maybe?) Leave at 12 for USP (Catie drama rehearsal) and Biology Keystones. Go to Lowes and get flooring that is finally in. Drop off library book, but don’t get sucked into vortex of library. Pick up all children from those at 4 plus car pool kid, drive home. Get Ethan from neighbor’s house. Dinner. Collapse.

Thursday:  USP and CPFA, home by 8:30 or so. Actually home a lot of the day! Leave at 3:15 to get to CPFA’s Spring Art Show (Nana pick up Laura so she doesn’t have to drive all the way home and then turn around to go back to school). Admire my daughter’s talent. Leave by 5, grab dinner and then head to Overbrook School for the Blind for Ethan’s Spring Concert. Meanwhile, Catie is performing in her drama, which we will miss tonight. Carpool family will drive her home. Spring Concert usually ends around 8:30, and it’s about 1 1/4 hours from home, so it’s a late night.

Friday: USP for Catie and carpool girl. Drive to headquarters of PALCS for Laura to finish Algebra. Home unknown time. Dinner of some sort, leave and meet Jim and Nana at USP for drama at 6:30.

Saturday: Thank goodness NOT starting kitchen reno!

Posted in Kitchen Reno

T Minus 16 Days

Where things stand:

I just tried to order flooring, but would only allow me to order three boxes instead of the seven that I needed. So I have a call into them and am waiting to hear back about that.

We still haven’t picked a paint color, but the paint fan is open to the three gray hues (meaning, three sheets of the fan, darker to lighter) that would work. It’s just a matter of Jim saying which exactly he wants and me going and buying it. I originally expected to use a cool gray–more in the blue family–but with the floor, counters and cabinets it definitely needed to be in the greige (beige gray) family instead.

The microwave is in our mudroom still in its packaging. The kitchen is slowly being emptied of things that I won’t need between now and the 21st. Our living room corner is full of boxes of those things. I’m starting to meal plan for not having a stove/oven and using the least amount of dishes I can. Thankfully it will be warm enough to grill a lot. 🙂

Our exterior door has come in. I haven’t picked it up yet, though. (oops!) Installation will be Saturday May 14. That will be so weird! As long as we’ve lived here, we’ve had a double-glass door (first a french door and now a sliding glass door). We’ve sold our sideboard (Thank you Facebook!) and moved the kitchen table over to its new home in anticipation of the new door’s placement.

We’re also talking about doing a “Bagster”, which seems to be an industrial tarp-like boxish shaped thing that you put construction debris in and then the company comes and gets it. WAYY cheaper than a dumpster, can actually go on our new driveway (which a dumpster can’t) and might work for our situation since we’re giving away our cabinets. We’ll see.

I look at the plan from Inspired Kitchen Design and wonder how in the world we’re going to get to that place. I know we will, it’s just the process. I want to have a structured, bullet-pointed list of the steps. And I’m thinking Jim will have to come up with it.

I’m glad we’re getting closer to the reality, but the getting closer is making me nervous!