Monday, October 20, 2014

Are you sick of me talking about my kitchen remodel yet?

Sorry, I am just so dang happy it's almost finished!!!

After using my old dark and disgusting kitchen for so many years, I longed, dreamed,  fantasized about the the day when I would have a kitchen that reminded me of sunshine. A room which was light, bright, and happy. I would say I am well on my way.

Here is the kitchen with all the recessed lighting finally installed. The center light fixture won't be installed until after all the crown molding goes in to avoid damaging it, but it has 3 additional lights. And don't forget, I also have under cabinet puck lights to install as well. Although I have to admit when we flip the light switch on (especially in the morning) it is somewhat jarring. Who needs caffeine? heh


Notice anything else?

Remember the issue I had with the 6 inch gap next to the stove? Well my brother-in-law shifted the cabinets to the left so the gap is no longer next to the stove. It is now at the end of the run of cabinets behind the lazy susan cabinet. Why didn't I think of that? Ummm, because he is the professional, and I am not!

So I think the plan will be to block of the back of the lazy susan (under the window area) so things (or my animals) can't get stuck back there.


Block access to the dead space behind the lazy susan cabinet.

Although it is making me crazy KNOWING that extra space is there and will be unused!
Unused space BEHIND the lazy susan cabinet.
To bad I can't have some fancy high tech gadgetry, that raises and lowers a TV...wait a minute...These things actually exist?!!  How fancy is that? Not that I could EVER afford something like that. But it is nice to dream, eh?


You really can find everything on Pinterest!
 I took a little artistic license to render an ideal of what this would look like with an access panel/ door


The space is 7.5 inches wide, has a maximum depth of  28 inches and a height of approximately 30 inches by the time you factor in the construction of the cart/ shelf and clearance. Just imagine the possibilities for storage! I could stash the pet food, have small roll out pantry shelf or store over-sized platters and baking sheets. 

Hmmm, what else? I bought the cabinet hardware and the fabric for my curtains. I am still scouting ideals for a bar stool or 2. I am prepping my kitchen island makeover and have some decorative objects for the kitchen...but more on these later.


Here's my list from my earlier kitchen remodel post with some additions/ modifications
  • Finish tearing out the plaster and lathe on the North wall--DONE!!
  • Tear out ceiling--DONE!!
  • Cut out the wall boards in the sink area to remove mold. It appears to be contained in a few spots. Decided to do a complete tear out--DONE!!
  • Patch/ repair the remaining 2 walls. Possibly skim coat. Decided to do a complete tear out
  • Build temporary supports for new headers over door and window.--DONE!!
  • Cut out a  2 foot by 8 foot floor section (sink area)--DONE!!
  • Sister the joist beams and shim where the floor slopes--DONE!!
  • Determine if sill plate needs repaired  Damage is minimal-yay!--DONE!!
  • Install a floor jack on North-East corner--where the the sill plate is water damaged
  • Move the stove outlet from floor to the wall and update to a new receptacle-DONE!!
  • Build bump out wall (west wall/ kitchen sink side) to accommodate for out of plumb wall.DONE!!
  • Lay a new subfloor--DONE!!
  • Replace, update and attach the outlet to a stud on east wall--DONE!!
  • Add 1-2 new receptacle(s) to the east wall (window wall)--DONE!!
  • Add 1 new receptacle to west wall-DONE!!
  • Purchase recessed light housing and trim kits
    DONE!!
  • Order focal/ center light--DONE!!
  • Move center junction box, DONE!!
  • Install recessed lights perimeter of the kitchen (3 on each wall) and install dimmer switchDONE!!
  • Install/ wire in electric for stove exhaust hood--DONE!!
  • Replace the window--DONE!!
  • Insulate and seal. Minimize any possible cracks, leaks or vermin/bug/ draft entry points-IN PROGRESS
  • Electrician inspection--DONE!!
  • Drywall, mud, tape, prime and paint --DONE!!
  • REPAIR THE EXTERIOR WALL FROM INSTALLING A SMALLER WINDOW--IN PROGRESS
  • Install the linoleum -- DONE!!
  • Install plugs and light switches--DONE!!
  • Final electric connection to the breaker--DONE!!
  • Purchase additional corner cabinet DONE!!
  • Install cabinets-- DONE!!
  • Figure a solution for the 6 inch gap in run of cabinets (stove side)--IN PROGRESS
  • Order remaining counter top (stove side of the kitchen) Order NEW counter tops due to laminate being discontinued--14 days lead time
  • Install counter tops
  • Plumbing!
  • Install sink
  • Install garbage disposal
  • On demand hot water? Maybe???
  • Order and install stove exhaust hood--DONE!!
  • Paint and install new door
  • Purchase door hardware--DONE!!
  • Install door hardware, including kickplate
  • Add a peephole to the door since it is windowless
  • Trim work (doors, the window, baseboards, crown molding)
  • Purchase  tile for backsplash--DONE!!
  • Install tile back splash (sink area), considering backsplash installation on stove side?
  • Install stove and refrigerator
  • Purchase end panel for dishwasher installation--DONE!!
  • Purchase and install a dishwasher--IN PROGRESS
  • Purchase and install cabinet hardware--IN PROGRESS
  • Purchase ceiling medallion
  • Install the ceiling medallion and chandelier
  • Decide on window treatment--DONE!!
  • Order and SEW fabric for window valance/ curtains/ shade--IN PROGRESS
  • Paint  mobile island/ cart
  • DIY some wall art
  • Purchase/ DIY 2 kitchen stools
  • Accessorize
  • Cook, bake and ENJOY the finished kitchen!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Beat the Clock Beef Barley

Soup...Stew...Stouwp?  I literally had 15 minutes before I had to leave for work this morning, when I remembered the package of stew beef in the fridge that I needed to use. Not to mention, I needed something for dinner after a day of working and then running to appointments when the work day is over.

A 60 second check of the pantry and freezer indicated I had everything I needed. Disclaimer--this is not a wholesome from scratch recipe but it will give the appearance and taste of one. 


Spritz the crockpot with some cooking oil. Toss the stew beef and dry gravy packet together and pour into the crockpot.


Add to this:
1/2 cup of barley rinsed
12 ounces frozen mixed vegetables
1 cup frozen diced potatoes
1 cup of frozen mirepoix
8 ounces of  canned tomato sauce
2-15 ounce cans low sodium beef broth
 2 tablespoons of worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1/2 teaspoon of onion powder
1/4 teaspoon of paprika
1/8 teaspoon of garlic powder
pinch of salt and several dashes of pepper (I prefer to add more salt and pepper to taste upon completion of cooking)


Give it a good stir or 2. Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours.


The final result is a thick, rich and hearty soup/stew/ stouwp.  Very flavorful and rich--with beef so tender it falls apart.


I served it with some take and bake french bread -slathered in butter of course-- and a big ol' glass of moo juice. Not too shabby for less than 15 minutes of pep time, eh?



What are y'all cooking?





Sunday, October 12, 2014

All about that base

...cabinet. But I am a big girl and can appreciate all the right junk in all the right places. As long as it is neatly organized and color coded, hehe.  

Now I now y'all were singing and dancing to this song--don't even try to deny it!

So yup, we finally made it the base cabinet installation. Sorta. We have the cabinets temporarily in place and found a couple issues. Of course we did! And by we...I mean me!

What you can't see here is the cabinet on the far left, when the door is open, extends 3-4 inches overlapping the entry door.  This was an easy fix, by simply switching the cabinets. Sorta. By switching them, they no longer match the symmetry of the upper cabinets (i.e 24 then 18 inch left to right) Scroll down to picture #3, to see what I am talking about. 


Entry view. Notice anything?


How about now? Apparently, unbeknownst to me, the cabinets do not include finished toe kicks. So that is a small extra cost to purchase the toe kick molding.


Notice anything else?  We have a 6 inch gap which will be on the right side of the stove.

 Unfortunately this line of cabinets does NOT include 6 inch base cabinets. DOH!! What to do? I have 6 options...
1. I have reached out to the manufacturer because maybe--just maybe--I can custom order the cabinet or at the very least, order the door before we attempt a DIY  match project in option #2. 
2. I found a tutorial on how to build a base cabinet, courtesy of Ana White. So yeah, somebody is gonna be putting their carpentry skills to the test. I can purchase the cabinet skin thats matches my line of cabinets to finish the sides. I have found some doors with a similar profile (WHY oh why didn't I choose flat panel doors?) and I would need to match the paint. Oh joy! 
3. Contact a custom cabinet maker for a build and match.
4. Space either of the cabinets left of the lazy susan to accommodate the filler attached via a hidden piano hinge and a pressure latch. I would still need a base spacer frame.This would be the least amount of construction and would still allow me use of the space for a compact step ladder or baking sheets. Given  time and budget constraints this may very well be the best solution. My only concern would be scratching the the sides of cabinets by not building a full skeleton cabinet and finishing it with the cabinet laminate.
5. Install filler strips between 2 of the cabinets to close the gap. This would be the cheapest and easiest fix, but I can't  stand the the thought of all that wasted space. It is bad enough there is so much wasted space behind the lazy susan cabinet.
6. Build the base spacer and install a pre-built organizer like one offered from Rev-A-Shelf. I could then attach a door to the slide out frame. Again this leads me back to needing a custom door.


Next problem (or two)


I LOST my drawing of the kitchen layout. Yes, somehow I misplaced it and this is what happened... The 2 extra  (12 inch wall and base) cabinets we THOUGHT we didn't need (and already returned) were suppose to go here (As shown by the white rectangles). So now I will have very little counter space on the right hand side of my sink. The bigger problem-as indicated by the red arrow--is a bow in my cabinet. We don't know if the warping happened due to manufacturing process or if this was a cabinet that was in the garage for a year. This is gonna have to come down. It is making me crazy. We can't take the cabinet back because it has holes from securing it to the wall. SO it will be recycled into the laundry room makeover. Maybe both problems can be fixed on this  side somewhat easily--just not cheaply.

So as far as cabinets go--fix the gap, the bow, the missing cabinets issue, shim, level and secure the cabinets. Once these steps are finished the measurements will be taken to order the counter tops. 

1 step forward and 2 steps back. Siiighhh...Things could be worse. I am just so anxious to see the project completed. Anyone else working on some troublesome projects?


Here's my list from my earlier kitchen remodel post with some additions/ modifications
  • Finish tearing out the plaster and lathe on the North wall--DONE!!
  • Tear out ceiling--DONE!!
  • Cut out the wall boards in the sink area to remove mold. It appears to be contained in a few spots. Decided to do a complete tear out--DONE!!
  • Patch/ repair the remaining 2 walls. Possibly skim coat. Decided to do a complete tear out
  • Build temporary supports for new headers over door and window.--DONE!!
  • Cut out a  2 foot by 8 foot floor section (sink area)--DONE!!
  • Sister the joist beams and shim where the floor slopes--DONE!!
  • Determine if sill plate needs repaired  Damage is minimal-yay!--DONE!!
  • Install a floor jack on North-East corner--where the the sill plate is water damaged
  • Move the stove outlet from floor to the wall and update to a new receptacle-DONE!!
  • Build bump out wall (west wall/ kitchen sink side) to accommodate for out of plumb wall.DONE!!
  • Lay a new subfloor--DONE!!
  • Replace, update and attach the outlet to a stud on east wall--DONE!!
  • Add 1-2 new receptacle(s) to the east wall (window wall)--DONE!!
  • Add 1 new receptacle to west wall-DONE!!
  • Purchase recessed light housing and trim kits
    DONE!!
  • Order focal/ center light--DONE!!
  • Move center junction box, DONE!!
  • Install recessed lights perimeter of the kitchen (3 on each wall) and install dimmer switchDONE!!
  • Install/ wire in electric for stove exhaust hood--DONE!!
  • Replace the window--DONE!!

  • Insulate and seal. Minimize any possible cracks, leaks or vermin/bug/ draft entry points-IN PROGRESS
  • Electrician inspection--DONE!!
  • Drywall, mud, tape, prime and paint --DONE!!
  • REPAIR THE EXTERIOR WALL FROM INSTALLING A SMALLER WINDOW--IN PROGRESS
  • Install the linoleum -- DONE!!
  • Install plugs and light switches--DONE!!
  • Final electric connection to the breaker--DONE!!
  • Purchase additional corner cabinet DONE!!
  • Install cabinets-- IN PROGRESS
  • Figure a solution for the 6 inch gap in run of cabinets (stove side)--IN PROGRESS
  • Order remaining counter top (stove side of the kitchen) Order NEW counter tops due to laminate being discontinued--14 days lead time
  • Install counter tops
  • Plumbing!
  • Install sink
  • Install garbage disposal
  • On demand hot water? Maybe???
  • Order and install stove exhaust hood--DONE!!
  • Paint and install new door
  • Purchase door hardware--DONE!!
  • Install door hardware, including kickplate
  • Add a peephole to the door since it is windowless
  • Trim work (doors, the window, baseboards, crown molding)
  • Purchase  tile for backsplash--DONE!!
  • Install tile back splash (sink area), considering backsplash installation on stove side?
  • Install stove and refrigerator
  • Purchase end panel for dishwasher installation--DONE!!
  • Purchase and install a dishwasher
  • Purchase and install cabinet hardware
  • Purchase ceiling medallion
  • Install the ceiling medallion and chandelier
  • Decide on window treatment
  • Order and SEW fabric for window valance/ curtains/ shade
  • Paint  mobile island/ cart
  • DIY some wall art
  • Purchase/ DIY 2 kitchen stools
  • Accessorize
  • Cook, bake and ENJOY the finished kitchen!