Thanks to everyone for your support/kind words/stories after yesterday's post about Lulu and Mel's tumor removal surgeries. It helped quite a bit. We're hopeful all will go well this Friday, and we'll surely keep you all posted, especially with any funny "collar of shame" photos we might take. 

So how's the kitchen project coming, anyway? Work continued last night into the wee hours of the morning, in a desperate attempt to complete our kitchen counter top installation. It's amazing how cranky one might get after four days without water on the first floor of one's home. Why don't we have water, you might wonder? On Saturday morning we officially cut off the water, in order to remove the sink and old counter tops from the kitchen. 

Although we could, in theory, have taken the dirty dishes up to the guest bathroom shower, we instead opted to let them pile up on the stove, in a disgusting I-want-to-apply-to-be-on-Hoarders move. The dirty dishes, coupled with the wide array of tools and the fact we had to empty all the lower kitchen cabinets and stash those items in the sun porch, was absolutely driving me insane. You might say we've been eating, sleeping, dreaming, and breathing all things kitchen project this week. In fact, on a personal note, I have to share this hilarious email I received from Alex yesterday, when I was pestering him about what we would be accomplishing last night. At first I saw all of the steps and thought, OMG, then I kept reading. He can be a funny one. Apparently, when you're a DIY couple, these are the sorts of email exchanges you tend to have.

On Tue, Aug 28, 2012, Wendy wrote: maybe tomorrow? let's get the kitchen in order first.

what time will u b home? think we can get sink back in and functional tonight?

From: [email protected]
Date: Tue, 28 Aug 2012

Subject: Re: sleeps
To: [email protected]

I should be home at 5:15-30. I think we can get sink functional. Here's what we need to do.

---Though not outlined, we should look at cutting the backer board for the backsplash, at least to get it to the right size.

  1. Sand everything on the counter (80, wet wipe, 160, wet wipe, 220).
  2. Screw counter into place from cabinets
  3. Cut up old counter to get the cutout as a template.
  4. Set router to cut out sink (may need to unscrew the counter, but I'd rather not).
  5. Watch me freak out as we prepare to cut the sink hole
  6. Cut sink opening
  7. Silicone and drop in sink in opening
  8. More freaking out, there's no turning back.
  9. Let it dry some
  10. Buy a new sprayer
  11. Put sink controls back in w/ plumbers putty
  12. Plumbers tape on control threads
  13. Attach supply lines
  14. Attach new sprayer
  15. Install garbage disposal
  16. Attach dishwasher to counter top
  17. Attach dishwasher hose to cross support
  18. Attach garbage disposal to waste line
  19. Load in all of our crap
  20. Argue about how we have too much crap
  21. Vacuum floor
  22. Marvel at what we've accomplished
  23. Install bin pulls on IKEA cabinets
  24. Argue about how the trim needs to be installed
  25. Cut and install trim to mask the fact that our cabinets are crap and totally out of level
  26. Oil the counter tops
  27. Decide on herringbone vs running bond
  28. Argue about herringbone vs running bond
  29. Decide on herringbone vs running bond
  30. Mix up thinset
  31. Watch me get baboon ear while installing the tile
  32. (optional) curse the fact we chose herringbone
  33. Let cure
  34. Grout
  35. Baboon ear
  36. Keep oiling

I suppose that after 17 years together, Alex and I know each other to a tee. And as funny as this email was, it's pretty much a play by play of how we renovate. Lots of hard work, a few "intense discussions," and ultimately a great end result.

So roughly following the above email, we pushed on, and nearing midnight, we were still making ear piercing cuts with the router in order to cut the hole in the butcher block for the sink. It lasted longer, sounded louder, and went on later than we anticipated or realized. I think we might be nominated for worst neighbor of the year award. (Let's just say an apology email for the noise was sent to our neighbor around midnight. Ugh, we were totally those people last night.) 

A bit of cranky banter, a lot of hard work, and a room covered in saw dust later and I'm proud to announce we have this.

Yep, there she is in all her glory -- a functioning kitchen sink!

We even managed to install two of the bin pulls on the new cabinets for the wine bar while we were waiting for wood filler to dry. 

Just don't ask me how I inadvertently ordered two less pulls than we need. So we're still waiting on the delivery of the missing IKEA cabinet parts as well as the two final pulls before we can call this baby done. 

But back to the kitchen sink. Very early this morning we woke up to do the final sand, and then Alex ran a bead of silicone caulk around the perimeter of the sink while I continued cleaning up the saw dust mess from last night.

We'll give the caulk all day to cure so that we can start applying our first coat of mineral oil to the counters tonight. We're exhausted, but are elated by our progress. We'll obviously be talking way more in depth and showing more photos on all of these items later, but with all of the work on the kitchen we're having a hard time finding time to write blog posts.

Next up...the tile back splash! The jury's still out on what style we're going to do, and I'd be lying if I said I'm not considering returning our 3" x 6" tile in exchange for the mini running bond. I'm quite conflicted on this item. Oh, and let's not forget custom shelves for over the wine bar, window treatments for the sun porch, a new shoe storage solution, finish the hardware on the wine bar, find and buy seating for the sun porch, artwork...well, you get the gist. We've made a ton of progress but we still have a long way to go. I'm just glad we have water back in time for my cousin's arrival on Thursday night. Phew! What a temporary solution!

What were you up to last night? Were you alienating your neighbors while frantically trying to get your house back in working order? Maybe instead you had a relaxing night with your family? Were you tackling any DIY projects of your own? I'd love to hear how your night stacked up.

Comments 8


8/29/2012 at 11:49 AM
Looking good! Where did those bin pulls come from? They're lovely!
Thanks Ashley! They're from Pottery Barn. We used them almost ten years ago when we first painted the cabinets, and amazingly enough, they're still selling them! And I'm also thrilled, given my ordering mishap, that they ship free. :-)|vintage+pulls|3|best|0|1|24||1&cm_src=Quicklook
8/29/2012 at 12:20 PM
Looks great, guys! Love the progress.

Not that you really want to think about this right now, but when are you planning to do the major work on your master bathroom?

Also, I think the idea of moving the small hutch to the sunroom and making a counter space out of the IKEA cabinets and wine bar is wonderful. This is great space planning on your part. And I would love to see more pics in your next post about just how the kitchen space relates to the sunroom space, especially how the floors match up.
Thanks Mari! Ahh, the dreaded master bathroom project. I'll take all the heat on this one as it was my brilliant idea to insert this "quick little fix" into our project schedule. The work will resume in the bathroom as soon as we wrap up the kitchen and sun porch.

So far we're loving the new layout, even though we haven't been able to take advantage of the space yet in it's current state. I'm planning to open a special bottle of wine to celebrate once it's all done. We can definitely go into more detail on how the rooms relate to one another, and will take a photo of the step down from the kitchen into the sun porch. Thanks!
Karin K
8/29/2012 at 8:19 PM
LOVE the drawer pulls!!!!
Thanks! I love them too now, just as much as when we first picked them out 10 years ago for our existing cabinets. I'm so glad Pottery Barn is still making/selling them!
Threadbndr (Karla)
8/30/2012 at 10:56 AM
LOL. Actually, my neighbors were THOSE neighbors this week. They are on vacation this week and last night were working with shop lights right outside my bedroom window. (My house sits just a bit further back than the ones on either side, so my bedroom is level with the neighbor's patio on the north and my kitchen window is level with the back door of the house on the south.)

But anyhow, the neightbors to the north were working on staining their deck and the wood fence that runs between our properties (which means that I have to stain and seal my side of the north fence and since it looks wrong in so many ways to have just three sides done, I'll go all the way around, which will mean that the neighbors on the other side of me will need to do HER side of south fence.

Yes, it's the neighborhood domino effect LOL.
8/30/2012 at 2:20 PM
haha. I am no longer married and lists like that are exactly why I do not DIY anything! Their would be a lot of freaking out, and a lot of goof-ups! I am good at #22 though, although it is more like, marvel at what I paid through the nose for.

Baboon ear?

I need to get into DC to check out Community Forklift for some vintage kitchen cabinets to somehow shimmy into my 19th century kitchen. Have you guys found good stuff over there?

And it seems I lost track of your blog around the Olympics so I'm not sure what project you have going here. Did you get IKEA BB countertops? I have been oogling the kitchen at A Country Farmhouse and that is what they used. It looks amazing all sealed up. While I would love soapstone, there is no budget for it.
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