Saturday, November 29, 2014

Surprise Kitchen Reno

So at the beginning of May we started to notice a bump in our laminate flooring, with a cut in the center.  We have had problems with this floor since it was installed, so we dismissed it as one more thing that went wrong.  Then Jared noticed a dripping water sound, it finally bothered him enough to search for the noise.  On Thursday may 8th, he found the culprit.  The intake valve on the dishwasher had been leaking slowly for a long time and there was now a puddle that is was dripping into.  He shut off the dishwasher and stopped the leak.
The next day I called our insurance to find out what we should do.  They sent in Service Masters to assess the damage.  They discovered that the water had ruined everything down to the subfloors and studs on the back wall, as well as a some damage to the cabinets and insulation in the crawl space.  We also discovered damage to the air vents in the crawl space further in to the ordeal.
So the first step was to get all of our kitchen emptied out to that they could dry it out with fans, and HEPA filters.
We endured four and a half days of LOUD noise throughout our little house, and we set up camp in the kitchen.  The boys LOVED having a kitchen in the garage.  And I have to be honest I didn't mind it too much either.  If they spilled food on the floor - eh, it was the garage.  If they wanted to ride their bikes right up to the table - great - its the garage.  Best of all when I wanted fresh air and a nice breeze I opened the garage door - Ta Da - open air dining with a huge picture "window" :)  There were some other fun perks too, like when we sat down to dinner - we often had dinner guests who would stop by on their walks to visit. 
Unfortunately it had its down sides - like doing the dishes by hand in the bath tub - yuck!  And trying to cook was tricky at best. 
We were lucky that this "adventure" took place in the beginning of May through the end of June and we had great weather, so we were able to spend most of our time outdoors, but if we were not outdoors we were hiding in my room watching tv - it was quieter there.
So this is what my kitchen looked like for the four plus days the fans were running.  UGH those fans were noise and hot!!

After that things could only go up.  We were so blessed in having Phil Dascomb come into our lives.  He is a general contractor and has years of experience doing remodels and other home repairs etc.  Our wards boy scouts had a spaghetti dinner/auction in the ward and Phil contributed two hours of home repairs to the highest bidders.  Well Jared and I are not very handy and there were things we knew we need to get done so we made sure to win the bid.  He came over soon after the dinner and we gave him our list.  Then this happened, and we knew who we wanted to do our repairs.  Phil was wonderful to work with.  He could only come in the evenings, because he was still doing his full time job, but every night and weekend he was there, with our boys following close behind.  He was so patient with me and all my questions and concerns, and he was patient with my boys always wanting to be involved and ask questions.  Phil fixed everything!  He even worked on it while we were on vacation in California.
I was so very happy to finally have nice new tile floors.  And while we were making improvements I restained the cabinets and changed all the cabinet hardware.  It was a great improvement!
We soon learned that doing the dishes outside was much more fun and sanitary.  In fact - I began to really like doing the dishes by hand outside.  It was nice to slow down and work in the beautiful scenery.  I am grateful for modern day conveniences - especially when the weather is bad - but I think our ancestors had a good thing going for them spending most of their days outdoors doing their chores.  You may think I am crazy - but try it a few times - and I think you will enjoy it too.

The new floors are SO pretty!!

My boys thought the empty cabinets were great fun and the made much better hide outs than storage for pots and pans. :)
The irony about this whole kitchen remodel is that midway through we finally, after many years and months of looking, found a home we wanted to make an offer on - we made the offer and it was accepted.  So we began fixing our kitchen knowing full well we would not be able to enjoy it. kinda sad. :(
I will say - as home damage dramas go - we had it pretty good.  Yes I was without a kitchen for nearly two months, true, I was without laundry for those same two months.  It was frustrating to be so displaced.  But, we learned some great lessons, like how to survive without our modern day conveniences, how to be positive during challenges, like what really matters in life.  We were blessed with wonderful weather throughout it all, we were blessed with exceptional friends who offered laundry services, meals, and moral support.  And I feel like our family drew closer together during the process.  Best of all when it came time to sell our house - we could show a beautiful new kitchen, this was truly a blessing and miracle for us!

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