Saturday, August 23, 2008
Up to my aligators in asses
The kitchen project has gone into full swing. Our target is to have this done by Labor Day -- yes, Illiterate, I will be in Packwood on Saturday; see you & yours on the back porch? -- and I suppose the word "done" means the painting of the cabinets and the completion of the countertops, acquisition of the stove and microwave (and potentially their installation), the installation of the new sink, and possibly the cleaning and painting of the walls but that's pushin' it. Somehow this doesn't include the reinstallation of the cabinet doors, the installation of new lights, the floor still hasn't been decided on, and the baseboards around the room and cabinets can't be done until a new floor is in. At left [click for larger image] is the newly-widened peninsula breakfast-bar countertop as it existed while writing this: after adding the trim strips but before the grout has been laid.
This project is fun and exciting because I've always lived in houses where the only thing that ever changed designwise was what was hanging on the walls. The kitchen of my parents' house looked essentially the same when we moved in in 1976 and when they moved out in 2002; the only thing that ever changed was putting carpet over vinyl tile squares, and that was probably more about my mother wanting warm feet than about the tile pattern being fairly blah (and as I recall it, yellowish-beige). Even less changed in the bathrooms, including the parts that genuinely needed replacement because they were broken. And the walls? The only rooms that ever got new paint were the kids' bedrooms, neutral blue for the two rooms occupied by boys and neutral pink for my sister. The bathrooms were white. The kitchen was mostly wood panel so I won't complain about the lack of paint (paint on wood panel is tacky!) but the wall over the drainboard and all the walls in the diningroom that weren't brownish wood... white. As were the livingroom and the hallways and the master bedroom. Those HGTV personalities that carry their own paint sample card batches would have gone ga-ga for such a blank canvas, while others would have commanded, "Let's get this room out of the 1970's!!" seconds before going ape with a crowbar and an 8 pound sledge. That's where my wife and I come from, and while we're not into radical like some people (we have a friend with a stippled maroon livingroom and hallway, which looks great in strong natural light but like a dark cave down the hall where the only light is an incandescent bulb in a sickly off-nicotine fixture) we want color. It's subtle but present in the livingroom and hall, mostly light grey with two medium grey walls and in low light the two appear the same color, and the bathroom is a tasteful light green, but our kitchen will be purple and green and grey, dammit. Let there be color! But in the interest of full disclosure, you get one guess what color we painted the master bedroom a couple years ago. Uh huh. They can't all be revolutionary, we have to sleep in that room.
Perhaps I'll bring a book.
Hey, our kitchen back in CA needed sprucing up, so I painted those cheap arse cabinets RED, and I mean RED RED!! I had always longed for an Italian kitchen, and dagnabit, I did my best to turn ours into it.
Now, I have that kitchen I dreamed of. I have cherry cabinets now, but there's still a soft spot in my heart for those red ones.
I look forward to seeing the fruits of your labor in pictorial form. Work, Work, Work!!!!
I know your kitchen will look terrific.
Thanks for waiting for my return. It gave you an excuse to be lazy about posting.
As for homes not changing over the years...
At my grandparents, that was a comfort. Any where else it was and is just boring.
Way to go, guys!! Good luck getting done by Labor Day.
See my Flickr page's "Home Improvement" set for near-daily updates to the kitchen progress. At this moment: A - The backsplash on the right side of the kitchen has been tiled up, and tomorrow it will be grouted (sage green). B - The new stove and microwave will be delivered tomorrow, the cabinets for over those appliances haven't been put up yet, I installed a new outlet over the cabinet on that side tonight and now we need to tile that section, and there's just so much more to go. C - The flooring store person we paid $1800 for a bunch of Marmoleum is a total idiot. We called her today to ask whether the boxes were in, and she said "They'll come on the 27th." My wife replied, "Today's the 28th." The woman, honest to Jah, said "oh... how did that happen?" Mysteriously the arrival date has moved from yesterday to next week without any explanation. She said we could drive to a suburb of Seattle to pick it up, and my wife pointed out the $35 delivery charge we've already paid to have it brought to Tacoma, so no...
We're rewarding ourselves for our work by going on a road trip on Saturday. Priorities, you know. :)