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The State of My Kitchen This Week

This picture does not have much to do with my kitchen, except that I am trying to enjoy the peaceful view that I have from my kitchen window and ignore the mess inside my kitchen. And with that view from my kitchen the mess is a little easier to ignore.

My kitchen has been a mess this week and not in the I have been baking a ton type of mess. It has been more of a knock down part of a wall so you can measure for new cabinets type of mess.

Last month I mentioned that I was hoping to do a few things in my kitchen soon and soon came fast and work started this week. I am taking lots of before and after pictures and I will share soon on what we are doing. I have a whole post planned on what did not work well in my kitchen and a few ways I have made do and made it work for the last nine years.

I plan to take pictures of the process and share a few posts over the next few weeks/months on what we are doing. And I am really hoping it will be weeks, not months for the project to be done.

We changed the plan this week as far as what we were doing it was a good change and will make for more space in the end. We will now have enough space that I get to keep my double ovens. I was doing a bit of a happy dance when I found that out. Those of you that bake a lot will understand why I am thrilled about that. I really needed counter top space, more than double ovens, so I was willing to give them up, but am very glad that I won’t have to.

And I currently have all my appliances working, which is always a good thing. That will change once we get to the rip out everything and install cabinets phase, but I am thankful I get to keep them in working order for now.

Now, to make all the tough decisions like color, type of counter tops, and all that fun stuff that I want to make sure I get right. Anyone want to come help me with that part?! You might see a few “what should I choose posts” over the next few weeks.

I would love to hear tips, ideas, advice from those of you that have gone through kitchen remodels or big projects like this at your house. What should I make sure to have or do? Anything you didn’t do that you wish you would have?

I am feeling a bit overwhelmed at all the decisions big and little that goes into this. So, I would love thoughts from those of you that have done it and survived it.


Lynn's Kitchen Adventures


  1. Brandette W. says

    So exciting Lynn! We built our home 5 years ago now and picked out all of the kitchen details, appliances, colors, etc.

    Here is what I would do differently in our next build:
    1) go back to stainless steel appliances. We had these in our first house and sold them with. When we built this house, we opt’d to go the black appliances route for something different. I miss my stainless! Also, don’t skimp on the appliances. Definitely buy the best and most features that you can afford!

    2) miss having a large island in the kitchen. Next house will have one!

    3) would LOVE to have a large walk-in pantry.

    4) love, love, love my tiled backsplash that wraps around the whole kitchen’s backsplash. Messes are very easily cleaned up with a wet towel and it makes the walls look so finished.

    5) also love my granite countertops. so easy to maintain and always look great!

    6) I would love to have a window in my kitchen above the sink. I have never had that and I think it would be so fun!

    • Some of those are also on my list. We decided that we had enough room for an island and I am very excited to be getting that! I can’t wait for all the counter top space it will give me.

  2. Carol Exline says

    Don’t envy you the “task” but after it’s done, we’ll all be envious. Agree with Brandette, stainless steel. Just redone our kitchen and went from almond to stainless but also has black. Was so worried it would darken the room but looks great. Black is supposedly the new thing but I wanted the sleek look of the stainless steel. The range has black and stainless. Kept black for the microwave but stainless for the fridge. The mixture looks great.

    Granite countertops are awesome.

    Can’t wait to see your cabinets.

    • I will share lots of pictures of the process and when it is done, so that you all can see.

      And yes, I will be glad when it is done. Right not is the not so fun part, but I know it will be worth it.

  3. I will piggyback on several of Brandette’s thoughts…..

    I now have a LARGE kitchen window over my sink and LOVE it! I would definitely do it if you can!

    I couldn’t “swing” an island but I accomplished the next best thing, in my opinion: A pennisula counter that kind of mimics an island. Counter stools and all. We worked it in so it sets at an angle, not 90 degrees…more like a slightly open bent elbow! It uses the available space in the most efficient way possible. So, don’t be afraid to do something you’ve never seen before!

    And make sure you have lots of GOOD lighting! If things are torn up, you can put in several switches so there are a few lights on “here” and a few that go “there”…so you can completely control how things are lit at all times! I have a spot over the cooktop, one over the sink, bar lights, general lights, under-counter lights…you get the picture!

    As for counter tops, I went with quartz. I wanted a specific color and that was the best way to get what I wanted. My caution to you, if you go that route, is to be REALLY careful around the sink area. Chips happen…

    I extended the coutertop material as my backsplash. I would do it again…only have the front edge beveled more next time.

    I DO have black appliances and I happen to like them quite a lot! They picked up the black flecks in the green quartz. I also used black drawer pulls to continue with my color “theme” more. But the kitchen faces south so it handles the darker colors well. And the space isn’t small, so that helps, too. Consider your natural light as you plan colors and lighting…

    I LOVE the gray ceramic tile I found for the floor. It hides most of those “oops” moments you can’t thoroughly clean up right away sometimes! It won’t, however, keep whatever just fell from the top frig shelf from breaking… You can find a sandy brown color that will do the same fake-out, too.

    I definitely agree with a large pantry! I have one that I can WALK IN now and I ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT! I don’ t know how I can ever get along without one again!

    I also agree that you should spend the most you can to get the appliances you really want. Get what you will USE! It will make you happy to use them!! I LOVE my five-burner cooktop! I use the simmer burner more than I ever would have thought! Things to think about…..

    As for cabinets, you’re on your own. We argued about that and ended up going with a compromise that is “OK” but neither of us loves. It works with the trim thoughout the house though…so, there’s that…

    One last thought: I have a cookbook collection that I enjoy seeing…..SEEING but not dusting! So, I put three cabines door fronts in glass! A soft swirly design that shows my books but keeps out the dust! Same would go for pretty dishes! And don’t forget, you can always include some interior cabinet lighting, if the budget allows. Mine did not…

    Sorry…long-winded. (Sometimes my interior-designer trained self forgets when to shut up…) The bottom line is this: Go with what YOU love. Forget trends, unless YOU LOVE IT. Classic boring kitchens are for “house selling points” and not for living. YOU live there! SO MAKE IT FOR YOU AND LOVE IT EVERY DAY!!!

    • We looked at quartz last week, so thanks for the thoughts on that. Depending on the difference in cost, I may go with quartz instead of granite. I found one I really liked, so I hope it works out to go with it. I don’t have room for a big pantry, oh how I wish I did, but I am going to do a wall of pantry cupboards from floor to ceiling, so hopefully I will still have plenty of space. Thanks for all the tips. I am loving reading everyone’s thoughts.

  4. Lynn, we did a kitchen remodel a few years back. It was difficult to not have a kitchen for 6 weeks, but it was worth it in the end! I love my double ovens, too!! That was a new thing for me. We put in granite counter tops which I really, really like! They are easy to clean, and I even cut on them. I still use hotpads or trivets when placing hot items on the granite, but I have a cousin who doesn’t even bother. She has never has a crack from the heat. One word of advice: don’t buy a white or bone-colored ceramic stove top!! My appliances are all bone/cream colored so we got the bone colored stove top. It gets sooooo dirty sooooo fast! It’s really hard to keep the stove clean. Get a black one and save yourself some work! You will still need to clean it, but it will look good in between cleanings. Tile floors are a great investment, too. Super easy to clean and never (almost never) need replacing! No stripping or waxing necessary either. Good luck with your remodel!!

  5. Donna Ellwanger says

    We moved into our new house last July. I have quartz countertops and I love them. I have a tile back splash which ch looks gorgeous and it’s very easy to clean. Love the double oven, have a window over the sink, have an island with plug-ins on both ends (The cupboards also open from both sides.), microwave over the stovetop, and refriger ator with ice and water in the door. All my appliances are white. I have had no trouble keeping the stove top clean, and I bought one with touch controls so there are no knobs to get in the way. Some of my kitchen cupboards have pullout drawers and I wish they all did. They have self-closing drawers and a turntable cupboard in the corner. I love this because I keep baking supplies in there and they are at my fingertips. I wish the upper cupboard in the corner had turntables too, but I bought three and put in put them in there. That is where I keep the spices. My kitchen floor is a vinyl tile, 12 inch squares, in a beige pattern that doesn’t show dirt. Dishwasher is built in next to the sink. I have always lived in old farmhouses and this is my dream kitchen.

    • We are looking at quartz and I found one I really like, so I am glad to hear you love yours. I also hope to get the self closing drawers, I think those would be really nice. Thanks for all the ideas!

  6. We remodeled our kitchen 3 years ago. I agree with what others have posted above, but wanted to add a few things. Go for big drawers on the bottom. Way easier to store (and find stuff) in drawers than with cabinets on the bottom. I don’t miss my black hole cabinets on the bottom.

    I love having a real vent hood versus an ugly over the stove microwave that just recirculates air. We have a teeny microwave (only can fit a dinner plate) that fits in a upper cabinet that is perfect for us.

    I have under cabinet LED lighting that is wonderful. It’s very low profile and puts out a lot of light.

  7. N In Texaslike says

    Lynn: I found you looking for a recipie for pudding from scratch…a request for a dessert I had not made in 20 yrs! And then, I was interested in your remodeling issues as I am a retired designer, and a person that has rehabilitated and redesigned and designed a few homes in my years. First: I don’t know where the black granite or quartz product in your photo is going, but, if it is MAINLY black on kitchen counter tops, you will hate it! Shows every speck of dust, fingerprints, etc. IF it has enough white or other color, then it may be OK….Consider how the natural light will hit those countertops where ever they are. Second: I would not advise putting engineered wood or any type of wood in the kitchen. You bake, there are spills, there are kids, pet issues, etc. Protecting real or engineered wood in an environment like a kitchen or bathroom is fraught w/ problems and costly solutions. TY for the recipe and best of luck!!

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