I Designed and Built a Complete Kitchen from Scratch–Now What?

Hey 2017, what am I gonna do with you? Please, don’t leave me in a funk.

You showed up just a few weeks after I completed some pretty major projects at home and the office. And so far, I’ve been twiddling my thumbs wondering, “Now what?” I need something to do. As Colonel Brandon said in Sense and Sensibility, “Give me an occupation Miss Dashwood, or I shall run mad.”

Our kitchen prior to demolition

Prior to demolition

2015 was fairly ambitious. New floors were installed. I hung crown molding and repainted a couple of rooms, made custom baseboard for the entire main level. And I was just starting to build new kitchen cabinets when, on September 30th 2015, I took an ambulance ride to the emergency room. Then followed back surgery on October 2nd, and again on November 13th. And so, I spent the rest of 2016 horizontal, watching Doctor Who and reading Ursula LeGuin’s Earthsea novels.

Demolition in progress

Demolition in progress

2016 was better. I stayed injury free (though I was sad to have to give up running—doctor’s orders). I worked on the kitchen from late-January to late-November. That was a very satisfying accomplishment. Along the way I also built a few Christmas gifts. More importantly, Dawn and I renewed our vows to celebrate our 30 years of marriage.

Kitchen Island

Kitchen Island

And 2017? What do you hold? Well, for starters let’s be more disciplined about my fitness. Sure, I went to the gym regularly through 2016, but I never worked hard. I was too afraid to re-injure my back. And anyway, I spent most of January and February just learning how to walk normally again. As a result my waistline is growing beyond what it should be, my cardio fitness is pretty bad and I’ve lost a ton of good, solid muscle strength. So, let’s be more ambitious. Let’s make a few reasonable fitness goals and specific workout plans to achieve them. I’ll start by taking up swimming twice a week. (I kept saying I would after the kitchen was finished. Time to put my money where my mouth is.)

Hutch and Chest with Shelves

Hutch and Chest with Shelves

Around the house, I’ll build a new pantry for Dawn. Then, I’ll remodel the half-bath with a rustic vanity made from pallet wood, and topped by a pottery vessel sink. What about the deck though? It’ll be 15 years old this year and looks pretty bad. Hmmm… there are budget considerations. The roof and gutters need some repair and I’ll have to hire someone. We’ll have to see about the deck.

What about blogging? Yeah, I had to put that off during the kitchen build epic. It’s time for a reboot. I’m amazed that, even neglected, it still had over 100,000 page views in 2016. But, I really would like to produce 20-30 new posts this year.

And your spiritual life? Yes, that’s a big deal. I plan to read through the entire Bible this year. I actually started in November and I’m up through Deuteronomy 20. (BTW, who knew that one of the best-known blessings—even non-Christians have heard of—is found in the book of Numbers of all places??

“The LORD bless you and keep you;

The LORD make His face to shine upon you and be gracious to you;

The LORD lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace.”

—Numbers 6:22-24

Love that. Thank you Father for Your commitment to bless your people with everlasting kindness.) I also plan to start a new men’s discipleship group that will meet in my home. Oh, how I’ve missed the blessing of those deep connections.

Floating Shelves with Pottery

Floating Shelves with Pottery

Finances? Yes, the budget is planned for the year. Giving? We added two more ministries to support. Projects at the office? Still a little slow; I hope to be more engaged next week. Vacation plans? Not sure yet, but I’m hopeful. Starbucks card? Re-charged. :)

Okay 2017, let’s get things in gear! We have places to go, things to do/fix/build, people to see, and I love going, doing, and seeing.

What’s on your 2017 radar?

 

The Plaid Posse

Happy Friday!

This past Sunday our family gathered to celebrate our son’s youngest child’s 2nd birthday. When I arrived we discovered that me and our three kids (Häns, Haley, and Heidi) were all wearing plaid. Unplanned, but priceless.

Here’s the proof:

Hetricks in plaid

L to R: Heidi, Lon, Hans, Haley (The Plaid Posse)

Meanwhile my months-long project to remodel our kitchen continues.

To date, the entire first floor has new hardwood. There is new paint in several rooms, along with new crown moulding, and custom baseboard I made in my shop. The kitchen is fully designed and I’m currently building cabinets with ambrosia maple face frames.

Here’s an in-progress sample:

Ambrosia Maple Wall Cabinet in progress

Ambrosia Maple Wall Cabinet in progress

Have a great weekend!

Lon

Photo Friday: Designing and Building Our Own Kitchen

Hello and Happy Friday!

Here are a few photos and screen shots of the work in progress on our (Dawn’s) kitchen. Our goal was to replace all the flooring on the first floor of our home plus design, build, and install a new kitchen by the end of the year. This requires a ton of design work and discussion as well as actual labor. I am doing everything myself except laying the floors. We also paid Heidi to help me demo all the old flooring and baseboard.

So far, the old cabinets have been removed. New appliances installed. The design is done-ish—Dawn wants “primitive.” Final colors are TBD, but it will be a multi-layered effect with milkpaint. The tools and materials are onsite and ready to go. The new floors have been laid. And painting walls and trim is under way. Currently, I am milling and installing our own custom baseboards.

Comments and questions on anything you see here are completely welcome!

Have a great weekend.—Lon

Kitchen before with contractor grade oak cabinets and vinyl

Kitchen before with contractor grade oak cabinets and vinyl

2015 Kitchen Remodel Floor Plan

2015 Kitchen Remodel Floor Plan

Fridge wall elevation with stick-Lon-and-Dawn

Fridge wall elevation with stick-Lon-and-Dawn

Range wall elevation

Range wall elevation

Sink wall elevation

Sink wall elevation

Island plans

Island plans

Heidi helping me remove 1,000,000 staples

Heidi helping me remove 1,000,000 staples

Carpet and vinyl almost gone

Carpet and vinyl almost gone

Cabinet removal in progress

Cabinet removal in progress

Temp re-installing the sink

Temp re-installing the sink

New creamy paint and bright white crown

New creamy paint and bright white crown

Silly family photo after we removed all furntiture

Silly family photo after we removed all furntiture

Replacing the subfloor in our foyer

Replacing the subfloor in our foyer

New solid hickory floor

New solid hickory floor

Simple custom baseboard

Simple custom baseboard