kitchen remodel part 1


This is how the kitchen looked the night before Kevin came to start the remodel.  We stayed up late packing everything away.


First of all, I love my house and I love my kitchen.  However, my husband was not pleased with the way the kitchen has been holding up (or, “falling apart”) since we moved to this house seven years ago.  The cupboards were cracking, some of the doors had already fallen off and he reglued them.  Some of the drawers were missing “stops” so every once in a while someone would pull a drawer completely out, making a big mess.  One of the bigger drawers was stuck shut and no amount of pulling could open it.  While I am not partial to change OR major projects, Rich decided it was time to replace the cupboards and remodel.  He has been the driving force behind this whole experience and I am so thankful that he cares to invest in our “nest”.  We have the finances to do it and are thankful for no borrowing or debt. 

Secondly, this is part one of two major projects.  After the kitchen is done, we are also planning on doing an addition off our current dining table area to a new dining room/corner office/big pantry.  The plans are all drawn up and we hope to get that started in a few weeks.

Rich and I have been making the decisions for the kitchen together, and it’s been fun.  We both loved the look of dark wood for the cabinets, and we chose a nice solid cherry.  We picked out a double oven, decided to put in a second dishwasher, and found a flat top range that is bigger than what we had.  I look forward to cooking many meals (and I may even look forward to cleaning up!) for our big family over the years with a lot more ease in our new kitchen set-up.

At the same time, I feel extremely humbled, and frequently tear up, because really, there is no need for such luxury.  I take it as a gift of love from my husband, which is what it is.


Having Kevin working in the house every day was awkward at first but we quickly got used to him, he’s a very nice man and is so patient with us, with Seth especially.  Dear Seth is very inspired and now considers himself A Builder, too.  He wants to help, he wants to participate.  I have to work on keeping him out from under foot. 

I appreciate that Kevin is a neat worker, always sweeping and vacuuming up after himself. 

This is what the kitchen looked like after day 1.  He removed all the cupboards and the half wall.  (there is a big dumpster sitting in the driveway outside) I was thankful to be able to use the sink, oven, and dishwasher for one more day.


On the next day, the kitchen and livingroom were filled with boxes of cabinetry.  This was very exciting for the kids. 



See that very narrow piece in sort of the middle?  *SPICE DRAWER!*  I’m just thrilled as I have wasted so much time in the past, digging around searching for a particular spice for recipes.  I plan on organizing them alphabetically. 

The lower cabinets all have pull out shelves.


As you can see, the black stand is moved into the middle of the livingroom.  This is so the electrician can place the cords of the tv behind the wall.  Yes, we are also having other little house projects done at the same time, including a full paint job in the livingroom and kitchen.


The silverware is in the livingroom, along with the coffee maker and some dishes.  The master bedroom is full of groceries, kitchen linens, small appliances, and dishes.

I love love love the cabinetry!  I keep going out to open and shut the doors.  (the doors shut silently!  You let go half way and it slowly shuts on it’s own)  And I love that we no longer have that half wall anymore.  Instead, we have a long island.  We chose a wood top for it, and granite for the counters.  We will fit four stools at the island.  Ethan said it will be like a restaurant.  After the new addition is done, the table will no longer be in the room.

I requested bookshelves at the end for my cookbooks.  I started moving them into place!


The table and bathroom have become my temporary kitchen.  I laugh as I wash up the dishes in the bathroom sink.  I dump the leftover milky cheerios into the toilet and flush ’em down, then scrub everything up in the itty bitty sink. 

I have the crock pot out and have made soup and hot dogs.  I also heated up leftovers in it.  Crock pots are so handy!

I have the toaster ready and available on a bench by the table, too.

With no oven for the last week, we have been eating lots of deli food (macaroni salad, potato salad), sandwiches, and fruits.  The children have cold cereal and toast each morning for breakfast.  Dinners are a little harder because they are so used to my good hot meals (LOL).  It’s been mainly sandwiches, but we did order pizza last night, to Ethan’s great delight.


Washing the crock pot insert in the bathroom sink.  So weird, that I had to take a picture.


Today Kevin started painting and is almost done with the kitchen ceiling.  He also put the microwave back into place and ran an extension cord so that we can use it tonight.  My boys will be so thrilled, it’s been such a great experience for them to go without an oven for a week, now they now how good they have it.  I know there is away to make a single serving of scrambled eggs in a coffee mug.  (we need to use up eggs!)

Tomorrow the oven will be set up and the cords to the TV will be in place so I can move that crazy black stand back into place.  Kevin also plans on putting up the crown molding along the top of the cabinets, too.

Things are a little topsy turvy here– and there are definitely moments when I pull my hair out (so to speak) but it has gone well so far.  I am managing a household of nine, with five school children, two of which are in sports, and two preschoolers who are so very busy, but I will never complain, that’s for sure.  This is a girl’s dream come true!  I love my life.

I dream of kitchens lately and I can’t wait to move into mine!


27 thoughts on “kitchen remodel part 1

  1. I love my kitchen. The cabinets were made by an Amishman. I also have shelves that pull out, and the drawers that go back by themselves. I was fascinated by them at first. I had never seen them before. I have an old-fashioned breadboard, but no spice drawers. That sounds like a great idea.

  2. So excited for you! Remodeling is fun. Especially the kitchen!My husband owns a construction company. He has built and remodeled more kitchens than I can even begin to count over the years….however, he hasn’t gotten around to his wife’s kitchen yet. πŸ˜‰ I can’t complain, he has done so much work to our house, however, I still would love a new kitchen. Someday. πŸ™‚ Your cabinets are BeAuTiFuL!!!!! Love the doors. They are so warm and cozy looking.You have so much space. Perfect for your family!I can’t wait to see the next part in your Kitchen Remodel series! It’s like watching HGTV. :)Happy Tuesday.

  3. hi shanda…….your kitchen was always wonderful and a place of love and comfort for sure.  but i must say, those dark cabinets sure warm up that space and look simply gorgeous!!  can’t wait to see the finished product.  it is a gift of love from your husband, indeed, and one that will continue giving as you make new memories and yummy meals over the years.  so happy for you!!

  4. Very nice make-over of your kitchen! I’ve learned to cook almost anything on a propane grill and the burner of a turkey fryer ;)Make a fire out in your firepit and roast some hot dogs, fry some eggs on a pan over the fire or try toasting PB n J on the grill – yummy! There’s so many things you can cook over a fire. A big blessing to have such a cozy, warm home as yours! A haven of rest, comfort and joy.

  5. I remember when we redid our teeny tiny kitchen. It all went well until it was time to install the countertops. Something went wrong, and we ended up waiting almost 9 weeks for the contractor to get’r done, lol. As you know, no counter, no sink. It was an interesting time. You are going to have a beautiful and functional space when it’s all done. Nice.

  6. Oh, how wonderful! It is going to be so much better for you! There is nothing like a few days of “living rough” to make you appreciate what you have. Sounds like you need to have omelets for dinner! Or make a huge bowl of egg salad!

  7. I LOVE IT!!! I absolutely LOVE the cabinets, and I like the idea of the bookshelf on the end of the island. (I might have to steal that idea!)Isn’t it so nice to have supportive husbands? My hubby is the one who is insisting that we have granite counter tops in our next kitchen. :)I’m so incredibly happy for you. PS: You get the ‘woman of the year’ award for washing dishes in that small bathroom sink! LOL.

  8. I love the color you chose and cannot wait to see the two different kids of counter tops! Where is the garbage going to be now? It used to be where the cookbooks are now at the end. I lvoe the way the cabinets go all the way to the ceiling! I was all stressed about the floor not matching now that the island is moved! LOL! ( I realize it is not staying that way, I just thought you would think it was funny that I was stressed for you!) Can you show a pic of the spices once they are all in? Are you getting a new sink? Details Shanda, I need more details!!!! OKay and what is that space by where the sink used to be, is that for the dishwasher? I wish I was there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Love, JO

  9. Oh, I can so relate to it being hectic with workers at your home but it is looking SO beautiful. I am giddy with excitement for you all!!! Love the placement of the cookbooks and I can’t stop thinking about what a gift this new kitchen is…all the future Holidays and get-togethers you will have with your growing children and perhaps their own families one day…VERY cool. πŸ™‚ Love, Chris

  10. Super super nice! The cabinets look similar to mine!!! A mix between country and modern. Love it!So sweet to read how you take it as a gift of love even though its not something you asked for!!! It would be easy to be negative and feel as though he is doing it for himself cause he just likes fine things. I appreciate the way you look at things in such a warm and positive and uplifting way always looking at the good in others. It really does make life so much better doesn’t it!!!!! Also it really IS a way some men show love

  11. We, too, are in the midst of a kitchen remodel and washing dishes in the bathroom sink! It is kinda of like camping and I am enjoying it! Looking forward to the end product….yours and mine!

  12. So exciting, Shan! It looks gorgeous already. Can’t wait to see pics of it all finished. Such a wonderful gift from the Lord (and Rich) πŸ™‚

  13. I love it! We had fun over here trying to think about what you were going to do. My woodworker hubby figured out that the cabinets were probably not holding up, and David and I imagined more seating, an island, and expanded dining area. I am with JO. So excited to see what has been done, and dying for more details Aren’t we funny? I love spice drawers, cherry wood, pull out shelves in cabinets, room for cookbooks, and big stove tops! What a great idea to have two dishwashers! I am excited for you! I think Seth needs a builder tool belt We did a remodel back when Dan and Nick were preschoolers…it took weeks! It was a combined job with a carpenter and Bob, and they were constructing the cabinets, so it didn’t go very fast. I think washing dishes in the bathroom sink was the hardest, so I relate. Love how Rich loves you. You will make many, many meals, and memories in your kitchen.I am guessing that you may have taken up some of the flooring where the new island is, and used that for the exposed area? Like Jo said, it did come to my mind!

  14. it’s going to be so nice, shanda. i love how you showed us the process – before, during.. and can’t wait till after! seems like kevin is getting it done fast. i thought it would be weeks and weeks, even months. a kitchen reno just sounded so huge – but wow! in one week’s time it already looks almost finished. happy for you and sweet to have your man love on you that way!

  15. @wj3km –  Wilma, those are great ideas. The boys did start a fire one evening and cooked up a package of hot dogs. They had such a good time out there. The other thing I was think was how nice it would be to have an electric skillet or grill. I used to have one that plugged in. We don’t have a grill or I would be using it for sure! Our stove was installed this week, still waiting on the sink, then I’ll be cooking up a storm! xoxo

  16. @connie –  Thank you Connie! How’s the schooling going? Have the boys finished up yet? Have you made your plans for your summer trip yet? I’m loving the new kitchen. Can’t wait to get settled in it! Happy Friday!

  17. @Jo –  Jo, the garbage is now hidden away in a cupboard, the bottom pulls out for two cans, one for recycling and one for trash. I’ll take a picture for next post. The floor got fixed yesterday! Thank you so much for the comment! I always always love hearing from you.

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