Skip to main content

I'm Not Really a General Contractor

I'm a mom of five grown children; I know how to multi-task. When the kids were little, before each Mother's Day, John would read them a poem called, "Hats Off to Mother." The poem talked about some of the various roles that moms play, and it was accompanied by paper cutouts of a mother and the different hats she wore. 

I have felt like a taxi driver, a nurse, a chef, and other professions that the poem mentioned. One job the poem did not have is that of general contractor. 

John and I are having some changes made to our house prior to moving into it, and I'm finding myself struggling to coordinate everything. However, stressful though the job can be, it is also rather fun to pick colors and materials, and to see the changes occurring. Nothing is complete yet, but I thought I'd share some in-progress photos with you. 

One of the biggest changes we are making is in the kitchen. We chose to make changes to improve the functionality and to put our own touches on it, but it certainly would have served its purpose if we had kept it as-is. (Houses do not have to be updated to be homes!) Here are some before photos:


Photo: The kitchen as it came with the house. The cabinets are light maple and stop shy of the ceiling. There is a desk area on the left, with a sheet-rocked, closet-style pantry next to it. A peninsula extends from the right past the center of the room. Also on the right, is a triangular-shaped cabinet (a "Utah cabinet," I'm told) which juts out oddly from the wall.
Photo: Another photo of the kitchen, taken from a slightly different angle. Starting at the left and moving around the kitchen, we find: the desk area, the pantry, space for a refrigerator, a corner section of counter top, the stove, a tiny section of counter top, a corner sink (hard to see in the photo), more counter top, then the peninsula. The kitchen, minus the desk area, is about 10 feet by 10 feet.
Photo: The open stove door and the open dishwasher door touch. If someone were standing at the sink, that person would be trapped. (However, they might not mind because two big corner windows provide a great view of the outside.)
This next photo more accurately shows the current state of the kitchen: 

Photo: A nearly-empty kitchen, with most of the cabinets removed. Copper plumbing pipes run exposed from floor to ceiling, and electrical switches dangle from wires from the ceiling.
It will be a while yet before I can post an "after" photo. However, John and I did pick out granite this week for the counters. Here's a sneak peak of the cabinet stain sample against the granite:

Photo:  My hand holds a small piece of natural maple wood (with a dark Van Dyke glaze) against a dark "Aspen" granite slab
Tomorrow the plumber is coming to move the refrigerator water line. (He already moved the exposed copper pipes earlier this week.) On Thursday, the electrician is going to take care of the dangling light switches, and complete some other tasks. Once the demo is finished, we can start putting the kitchen back together. I'm excited to see the new look, and to take off my hard hat! 

Have you survived remodeling? Do you have any tips or advice?


Pin It

Comments

  1. Whoa! You really ARE a general contractor with all this major work being done. I'm eager to see the remodeled kitchen.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Trying to keep everything organized makes my head spin! There are so many details to remember, but I am excited to see the finished product.

      Delete
  2. very interesting post. before and after is alway fun, it being by a 'real' person (as opposed to someone with a staff) is even more so. look forward to next set of photos.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I always like seeing before and after photos, too--and I'm curious to see the after photos on this project, also!

      Delete
  3. I love remodeling and wished I could do more of it. This house needed nothing but the bathroom remodelled, but I loved every step of it. Especially picking out the new tiles and cabinet (little old cabinet turned in to sink by yours truely) lights and bathroom accessories. Breaking out all the old stuff, hammering away at the old tiles and seeing a bare cold space turn in to a warm and inviting bathroom.
    I would do it all again. I sometimes dream of 'doing' the kitchen too, but I'm too cheap to put in a lot of money in a space that's funcions just fine and has everything I need. I rather spend the money on a holiday ;-)
    If I'd live close, I would love to come and help. Seeing a house turn in to a home with the resident's character is always lovely to watch.
    Stay strong and it will be worth the hassle, I promisse.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are so handy!
      We're alike in some ways--we are not doing anything to the bathrooms for the same reason you aren't touching your kitchen. Like you, I think I'd prefer a vacation!

      Delete

Post a Comment

Conversations are so much nicer when more than one person does the talking. :-) Please leave a comment and let me know your thoughts; I'd love to hear from you!

Popular posts from this blog

Ten Things of Thankful: Even in Times of Uncertainty

  A railroad switch point on the tracks at the Golden Spike National Historic Park There is a lot I don't know. I don't know who will lead the United States for the next four years (at the time I'm composing this post, that hasn't been determined yet.) I don't know when covid cases will stop rising in my state and start decreasing. I don't know how challenging situations will turn out. There is much uncertainty in life. Living in limbo-land is hard. It's emotionally exhausting. It can be immobilizing. My body seems to think chocolate is the answer, but I know that isn't a long-term solution. What do I need in times like these? I need to REMEMBER . 1. R esilience. People are resilient. I am resilient. I'm thankful for resilience. 2. " E ach Life That Touches Ours for Good." So many people, both those I know in "real life," and those I have only met virtually, have taught me, encouraged me, and been examples to me. I'm thankful

Ten Things of Thankful: Dad's Influence Edition

Infant-me, sitting on the wood floor, looks up at my dad, who is sitting on a brown sofa and smiling down to me Here in the United States, it is Father's Day weekend. I did not realize until recently that Father's Day was not officially made a holiday until 1972. 1972! Now, while I realize that many people consider 1972 eons ago, I do not. I'm glad that fathers have a day of recognition now, because they surely deserve acknowledgement.  I thought for this week's Ten Things of Thankful post, I would list ten lessons I'm thankful my dad taught me. My dad is a teacher. Not only did he impart his knowledge to countless junior high aged kids throughout his career, he taught--and still teaches--my siblings and me. He is not a preachy teacher; he's a humble man whose lessons I feel like I learned through osmosis. When he would get home from work, we'd all sit down as a family for supper. Often, our phone would ring, and on the other end of the line would be a paren

Ten Things of Thankful: Summer Strawberries and Procrastinated Projects

A brilliantly-colored dark pink and purple fuchsia blossom You would think that by the time a person reaches my age, she would not be surprised by the passing of time, yet I find myself nearly constantly amazed that a certain amount of time has passed--whether that be a week, month, year, or couple of decades. Earlier this year, I planted a garden. Yesterday I harvested my first strawberry. Earlier this year, I also planted fuchsia starts, and now the flowers are blooming. How is that possible? (And why am I surprised?) Sometime around the turn of the century (and it still seems strange to use that phrase about the year 2000), we bought a circa 1935 dresser. It needed some TLC, but had a cool curvy front. This past week, I finally got around to applying some Restor-A-Finish and Feed-N-Wax, and now the dresser still looks old, but not dilapidated. I still need to apply some hide glue to some loose pieces, but I'm counting progress as a win. For as long as I can remember, I've be