When Paul and I bought our house, we made a list of the repairs and remodeling that we intended to accomplish within the first year or two. We put “remodel the kitchen” on the list below earthquake retrofitting, remodeling the bathroom, and painting the exterior, but above reroofing. A couple of years later, we had made it partway down the list, but we’d run out of steam before getting to the kitchen remodel. Not only had we run through the money allocated for work on the house, but I hadn’t yet figured out how to solve the design problems that the kitchen presented. (More on that later.)
Here’s how the kitchen looked when we bought the house, and how it has looked for the seven years since:
With this photo of the kitchen close at hand, I’ll take a moment to respond to the “ten things I hate” meme with which Janeen tagged me over a week ago. I’m generally not one to say that I hate either people or things, but there are at least ten things that I strongly dislike about our kitchen. (I’m not going to tag anyone, but feel free to play, if you wish. And no, you don’t have to write about your kitchen.)
Ten things I dislike intensely about our kitchen:
- The cheap cabinets. Cheap doors, cheap hinges, cheap drawers. These cabinets were cheap 20 years ago, and they have not aged well.
- The emerald green formica. Enough said.
- Electrical wiring that has a dishwasher on the same electrical circuit as upstairs bedroom and bathroom lights. Would you like to have your bathroom plunged into darkness whenever your dishwasher hit the rinse cycle? I didn’t think so.
- The electric stove. As if electric weren’t bad enough, it’s the 1970’s type with solid (not coil) burners. Furthermore, only three of those burners work.
- Not having counter space on both sides of the stove.
- No vent fan over the stove. Extra points deducted for stove placement directly under a window.
- The sheet vinyl flooring patterned to look like something else. Does that floor look like brick to you? (Sheet vinyl that’s patterned to look like linoleum is OK.)
- The dropped ceiling. You can’t tell in this photo, but the existing kitchen ceiling is dropped several inches below the original ceiling. Would you lower your entire kitchen ceiling 9″ just to install 2 recessed can lights? (If you would even consider it, please don’t answer. There’s enough sadness in the world already.)
- The butchered window trim. Removed under the windowsill so that the stove would fit. Cut down to a sliver on the right side so that the upper cabinet would fit on the wall. Why not make the cabinet 3″ narrower? Really.
- Of course I can’t leave out the kitchen sink. It’s not deep enough to hold my largest pots. Grrrr.
After seven years of living with this kitchen, I’m thrilled that we’re finally starting the remodel. Demolition is well under way; rebuilding begins next week. There will be photos, and dust, and stories. And three months from now (give or take), we will have a brand spanking new kitchen, without any of the things that I so dislike about its predecessor.