The Minor Kitchen Overhaul '08
When we first looked at this house, there were two things that jumped out at me as "must be changed" items in an otherwise acceptable house.
The first was the big bathroom: a crooked light fixture over the vanity, a huge medicine cabinet that stuck out from the wall and had a very worn finish, and a terrible combination of green sponge painting and ivy wall paper borders put up in unusual places. It took 3 years, but I finally tore out the worst of the stuff, repaired the ceiling, repainted, and replaced the mirror, light, and vanity hardware. It is not stunning, but the room does not horrify me whenever I enter it.
The other "must go" item was the kitchen wallpaper: a color co-ordinated combination of flowered paper, plaid paper, and a border of large flowers... all in hues of rose, green, and country blue. I dislike wallpaper intensely. And that plaid section? Aack. If you don't know this about me already, you should: I HATE plaid. But for six years I have lived with the wallpaper. We put up lots of kid art to cover the big expanses of wall and learned to live with it. You see, once you start messing with the kitchen, it raises all sorts of questions about new cabinets, retrofitted old ones, moving appliances, new flooring, etc., etc., etc., etc., etc. and that made my brain spin. We didn't have the money or energy to rip it all out, so we just did nothing.
Well today -- with kids on vacation from school and eager to help (at least for a while) -- I finally tackled the wallpaper. Andy came by and joined in. We finished 2 1/2 walls. I'm slightly freaked by the amount of work still to be done, but I'm excited about the possibility of finally having just a nice solid color of paint (that I chose) on the walls and fresh paint on the trim. Even though I did go out to Ikea today and allow some fantasy kitchens to enter my brain, I'm going to keep this project rather small -- just paint, new shelves, new window treatments, ceiling fan replacement, and a new hutch (cabinet? cupboard? still looking for the right piece) for returnables and lunch boxes to land. We can do more later. Who wants to help paint cabinets this spring????