So, we’re renovating this house. While we live here. Which is difficult at times, because you have to deal with the constant process that comes with renovating a house, at the same time you’re trying to deal with your normal life.
I don’t mean we’ve hired a lot of burly boys to take down things and put up new things. I mean we ripped out the kitchen to the studs a few summers back and blew a bigger hole in the wall for a bigger window and then installed pretty much everything except for moving a bit of plumbing and electrical.
And we did have the granite professionally installed. And now we have a stunning, modern kitchen that works 100x better than the original ever did or could, with black Ikea cabinets and stainless steel appliances and a gas cook top and an induction cook top and two ovens (one convection) and a built-in microwave, with high gloss white tile floors and lots of light and a beautiful tan and gray granite that moves and swirls and sparkles. We’re pretty happy with it, and I love to cook in it, and I’m not even a guy who cooks much.
We could never have afforded that level of product if we had not done all the work ourselves. Which required moving the refrigerator to the dining area and eating from a microwave the entire summer. This of course was after a full year of living with the original kitchen and driving two hours to the nearest Ikea a million times to look at various cabinet options and shopping online like a mad person trying to find high-end cook tops (Gaggenau and Kuppersbusch) at prices that indicated they were probably “found” off the back of some truck in some city where people actually buy that level of product every day and don’t sweat thousands of dollars. We did the entire kitchen for approximately $7,000. Including everything.
But it doesn’t and can’t stop there, because we bought a money freaking pit. It’s one of the original houses built in a subdivision that was intended to be high-end modern architectural design, but once the original investors got their houses built on the very best lots, they realized they were attempting to do something innovative in Kentucky, and those two words don’t go together here often. So the rest of the houses are very nice middle class typical normal looking buildings with normal windows and normal roof lines and nice brick. While our original has strange windows and shed roof lines and cedar siding on multiple modules at heights varying from one story to 2-1/2 stories. I’m pretty sure we’re mostly dealing with original cedar siding, which means it has to be pulled off and replaced because woodpeckers have knocked holes in it and so have squirrels and so have nesting birds and the weather has not been kind in places and I’m surprised we are currently able to keep any heat or air conditioning inside the house at all.
The inside of the house flows amazingly well. Split foyer, which is strange and seldom seen in Kentucky, but this one goes up and down sideways when you walk in the door, so you get a really lovely foyer. The house is built on a steep hillside, so the living area is downstairs, with views of trees and more trees. The kids bedrooms and bath are down the hall, and the kitchen and dining area flow into a wonderful living space with two story ceilings. Upstairs is a bridge between the master bedroom/bath and a study that overlooks the kitchen. The floors are wide oak plank and my boyfriend painted every wall pure white before we even moved in. It screams “1981” and everything you vaguely remember from that time, crossing out of the 70’s ecologically minded design and into the excess of the 80’s. The kitchen was really the only bad part, if you ignore the wood siding falling off the house in high winds, and the tiny bathrooms.