Thursday, February 25, 2010

Kitchen tour, part 1

As promised, here is part one of our kitchen addition! I was just going to show you pictures of our kitchen, the way it is now, but as I looked back through our pictures I thought you might like to see some of what went into getting where we are now! Reminiscing made me really happy, especially happy that I am not in the midst of the addition right now!

Here's our kitchen, pre-addition. It was not a terrible kitchen, but we were very crowded in it. At the time all twelve children were still living at home and, it seemed, spending most of their time hanging out in the kitchen with me! I liked having everyone with me in there, but I constantly felt like I needed to "part the waters" of children when I walked anywhere. We did figure out how to bring an extra oven into the room and basically made the kitchen work, but it was really, really a squeeze.

When we decided to add on to the back of our house I began to collect ideas in a "kitchen planning notebook." We had hoped to begin construction in the fall of 2007, but for various reasons that did not happen. In hindsight I am really glad that it didn't happen then. I think I would have rushed into decisions that I hadn't done adequate research on. We ended up breaking ground in April of 2008, so I had all winter to collect ideas, get bids on work and compare prices on items that we would need.

We broke ground on April 1 of that spring... so exciting!

Then it promptly began to rain! Each time it rained, we had a muddy river running through my basement and laundry area. Yuck! We did finally get the foundation poured though~ so exciting to see some progress happening.

Here's what the back of our house looked like before we began the addition. This was back in the "goood ol' days", when I was still sane! Doing a large-scale remodel or addition with lots of little ones around is an incredible challenge. The boys were absolutely glued to the windows to watch all of the work being done. And when they weren't glued to the windows, they were sneaking out the door to play with nail guns and totter around gaping holes in the ground that had rebar sticking up out of them, etc. So much fun! I began to learn about praying that spring.

Here we have walls going up.... During this time we continued to have some pretty impressive spring storms~ tornadoes etc. I vividly remember wondering what would happen to that poor south wall which was left standing all by itself (braced of course by some 2x4s~ but still!) if a bad storm came up that night. It did storm and I did pray!

and more walls going up!

In the meantime, I was busy planning and researching kitchens. My good friend Justine suggested that I check out an old farmhouse sink that she had seen at a plumbing supply store. To my great delight I found our sink!

The picture is terrible, but what we found was a 1920s 78"long farmhouse sink with double drainboards and both original legs! Wow! It was in desperate need of a new coat of porcelain.

After an embarrassing amount of begging and general groveling I talked a local porcelain business into sandblasting my "baby" and putting a new coat of porcelain on it! Yay!

Here's one more "before" pic of the sink (and cute boys!).....

Things continued to progress...

We still hadn't taken the wall out between the old and new kitchen.

Man was that a mess when we took that wall out! Our house is an old 1930s farmhouse with lots of original plaster and lathe in the walls. Even with plastic over the doorways of my old kitchen, we had plaster and dust everywhere on the main floor of our house.

One thing that was really cool about our kitchen addition was that I was able to keep my old kitchen functioning until my new kitchen was ready to move out into. I don't know how we would have done it if I had totally lost the oven, sink, etc in our old kitchen.

Wait, what is that I see? Could it be children horsing around in the rafters? Surely not!

It really was fun for me to see the room with sheetrock up. For some reason that made it seem more "real" to me. Perhaps the end was in sight after all!

Once the sheetrock was all in place and taped, etc. we had lots of painting to do.

I chose a Sherwin Williams yellow, (banana cream # 6673 ) and I was certain that I had made a terrible mistake once I was done. It looked so.... well, yellow! I remember calling my mom and asking her to console me.... now I love the color!

We installed the hardwood floor. It was a prefinished solid oak floor that we got on sale at Home Depot. I have been really happy with how it has held up. I think the finish that they put on the boards in factory is much more durable than polyurethane that is available for homeowners who refinish their own floors.

And finally we had cabinets delivered!

I can't believe how long I've let this post get! Probably more information than anyone wanted, but I sure had fun reminiscing! So there you have April 1 to August 29, 2008.

Next up... the official kitchen tour/open house for you!



  1. How exciting! Who doesn't love to see makeovers? I can't wait to see part 2.
    ps. love the kid in the sink and one licking the brush! It shows your family has a sense of humor!

  2. Susan it is lovely! I enjoyed this post and didn't think it was too long. A picture speaks a thousand words they say and all you pictures are great. They sure "tell the tale"! Amazing where you've come from hey?? Oh, do I ever know about renovations, but is it every worth it in the end! (Did I just write that?!)

    AND...I love the colour choice ~ it must be so very cheerful in there since the room faces South.


  3. I am so glad you took the time to share! Each photo is an encouragement to me (we're in the midst of some remodeling ourselves). I can't wait for the "reveal!"

  4. Oh I love seeing this! Helps me to dream about my own tiny kitchen growing up someday. Can't wait to see the after pics. Keep 'em coming. Thank you.

  5. I love it! My little kitchen seems rather tight, but we laugh when we are all in there together...our lives are full of people! (His greatest creation!) I love the sink and can't wait to see part 2.

  6. Oh my goodness, I LOVE that sink and confess I want it!!! Beautiful kitchen, and I really think a mom of many children deserves/NEEDS a big, beautiful kitchen. (I hope to have one too, someday!)

  7. Love it! Thank you so much for all the pictures! We have similiar taste and ideas. You guys did an awesome job!

  8. Thanks so much for all the kind and encouraging comments, everybody! I'm glad I didn't bore anybody too badly!


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