Sunday, March 23, 2008

Uh Oh!

It occurred to me that once my contractor friend figures out how to level the floor, I'll need to paint then get the flooring down.

Yeah...I have no idea what color to paint this room. I'm only half sure about the tile and hardwood. And even less sure about the radiant floor heating.

I should probably start figuring this out pretty soon, don't ya think?

Saturday, March 22, 2008

High Cabinet Next to Pantry Door?

Is it a bad idea to have the high cabinet 24" pantry next to the entryway from the formal dining room?

What about one next to the side door that leads out to the dog run? The dog run that I still haven't figured out how to build, but whatever.

BTW I'm pretty sure the wall cab next to the pantry in the first pic won't have a door so I can use it as a bookshelf. And the base underneath it, will only be a drawer so I can fit a step stool under it. Thanks to Susan for the inspiration!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Fast Forward, Fast Forward, the Wall is Down!

I realized I'm an idiot. I never took a pic of my original kitchen. And I haven't been staying on top of taking pics of the progress. Oh well, I really am doing the best I can. Anyway...

Here's the left side of family room.

The right side.

The garage/kitchen with the dividing wall up.

The other side of the dividing wall with the soffit and wall cabinet down. (What's up with that wallpaper btw?)

And the wall comes down. This all starts feeling really real.

The wall is completely out (view from the garage/kitchen side).

The vent pipe needs to get relocated now that it's sitting in the middle of the kitchen.

New plumbing and venting.

One of my old wall cabinets on the oven/fridge wall.

Cabinet down. Soffit down. I did that!

This is what I found when I ripped down the paneling. Maybe there was a fake brickface on the walls? It looked like a dried up gummy glue, weird.

This is where I stopped so I could feed my kid and put her to bed. I'll finish the demo on the oven/fridge wall tomorrow.

I was planning on keeping the cabinets in the basement for storage, but I don't think that's going to pan out. I already have too much stuff down there. I need to learn to let go of things. I posted them on freecycle since I don't have the heart to throw them out and I'd like them to find a good home.

The new expanded kitchen is surprisingly warm despite not having the ductwork or radiant floors in. The siding is done on one side of the house, but I forgot to take a pic.

My only current complaint is that no one warns you when they plan on disconnecting things. The first contractors dismantled my sink, and now the new guys took the stovetop out. If it can't go in the microwave or toaster oven, I don't know what to do!

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Which Island Cabinets?

Here's my conundrum. When I initially planned the island, I stood in front of my stove top to figure out what I use and how I use it so I could figure out the best and most efficient cabinets to use.

I knew I needed 18" in the right since the NKBA says so and for whatever reason, I'm trying to follow their guidelines. That worked fine, since I was going to put all my cooking utensils on that side. The drawers under the stove top would be for my pots and pans. The 15" pull-out to the left would be for oils and spices (I have a lot!). And the far left would be for wire baskets for the onions and potatoes.

Now before anyone yells at me, I have onions and potatoes currently stored in wire baskets, so I'm used to the shedding mess of onions. I'd rather it be in the cabinet than on my windowsill anyway. And I also know there's something about gases making them go bad faster if stored together. But I've done it my whole life with no problem, so whatever.

But as I started searching through the posts on IKEAfans, I noticed a lot of people recommended the drawers in lieu of the pullouts since they are virtually the same thing with just one door in stead of three (or four). So I thought maybe I should go with one 30" drawer cabinet instead of the two 15" cabinets. I think the price is comparable, but is this more efficient? Do you think I'll have issues storing oils and vinegars of different heights?

In a pull-out, I'm guessing I'd have the ability to adjust the heights of the drawers to my needs. But this way, I'm kinda stuck.

In any case, the spices would be in the two top drawers, the oils, vinegars and bulk spices in the bottom two and I could put a basket in separate drawers with the onion and potatoes so they're kept apart.

I think I'm going to have to go to IKEA and stand in front of the cabinets in order to decide. Why is none of this easy?

Flanges Anyone?

So a new header went in over the slider, since it has virtually no support above it before. Notice how there's no longer a 2+ inch gap above the door. As the new guy was cleaning up, he discovered...

Flanges! Yeah, so apparently the old guys didn't frame out the door properly, so when they put it in, the flanges came out...or maybe they never attempted to put them in in the first place. They didn't realize those picture windows should've had flanges, so it's safe to assume they didn't know the door needed it either. Now the door's going to have to come out, great.

The utility closet is gutted and ready to be finished.

The attic ladder is now in.

Unfortunately, the standard size is way too long for my house, so the new guy cut a big chunk of the end off. He didn't install the new feet, since I'm still not sure about the flooring and whether he's going to have to shave off anymore.

My barely-insulated attic is now insulated over the new ceiling.

More boxes to go through. I can't wait to see what else I find!

Some Stuff I Found in the Attic

Toys! Toys! Toys!

My parents are funny, they don't throw anything away. We brought down a lot of stuff from the attic when they were going to put the new ceiling up. I only took a couple of pics, but I'll make sure I get more up soon.

bouncy ball

kitchen set
(notice the inflatable chair and table in the background)

more kitchen stuff

(the cardboard pieces are "toast" colored yellow for butter and red for jam and "cookies" I made as a kid)
toy harmonica

Friday, March 7, 2008

Microwave Placement...Maybe...

I really do love the IKEAfans website. Everyone's so great with feedback. If it wasn't for them, I'd be lost! So thank you my wonderful Ikeafans friends in my head! (Any of you non-IKEAfan people just ignore my weird little rave).

BTW I am an idiot when it comes to blog message etiquette...I don't know if I'm suppose to just respond on my site or respond directly to the person or is it okay if I don't respond at all. So if you were expecting any of that and it didn't happen, I'm sorry, it's not you, it's me.

Anyway, you'd never guess it if you knew me in the real world, but I do enjoy the look of symmetry. For example, it would bug me to have a 30" wall cabinet with a 24" base underneath it. Why? Who knows. I'm a little wonky about stuff.

Point being, I decided to go with NBeth's solution of using an high oven cabinet for the microwave. Which, now that I'm thinking about it, makes a lot of sense for my situation since I plan on putting my under-the-cabinet toaster oven in there too. Now I won't have to worry about heat issues. If it can handle the heat from the oven, then my little toaster oven should be fine, right?

My oven's way taller than the one in the pic...W24" x H38" to be exact. I don't really get the whole sizing thing when it comes to that. I know the people at my IKEA are not remotely helpful and usually act like you're bothering them, so I'm a little nervous about figuring that out.

I'll probably wind up posting a request for help, yeeesh.

More work got done today, I'll post pics later. It's almost 2am! Why am I up!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Microwave on Counter or in a Cabinet?

I was initially planning on using the wall cabinet for the microwave, as seen below. Then I thought about putting the microwave under the counter like I saw on Ikeafan knutter's gallery. But the more I thought about bending down to reach under the counter to use it, the more I thought I probably wouldn't like it.

Then I thought it would be better to use a regular 24"W wall cabinet and put the microwave on the counter below it. At 5' 3" I thought the height would be good for me, plus my daughter would have easier access to it.

The only thing I'm unsure of is that there are no 24"D the above the fridge ones. I'm wondering if I should use the frame of a 24"W x 12"D wall cabinet and attach a second one in front with the doors. This way it'll be the same depth as the other three cabinets at its level.

The question is, would that even work? Is it worth doing?...will those 12"D doors open without a problem sandwiched in between cabinets twice as deep? OR should I use a 12"D cabinet above the fridge too?

I think it looks better aesthetically...but I'm not sure. Decisions, decisions...

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Need Siding? Check out Arzee

If you live in Jersey, here's a quick tip. Down Edgeboro Road in East Brunswick, amidst all the warehouses is Arzee Supply, a wholesale siding place that used to only deal with stores and contractors and whatnot. They're now open to the public and carry all sorts of stuff you'd need from siding to windows to roofing. And delivery is crazy cheap and they'll even lift your roofing stuff up to the roof to make it easier on your roofing guys. (Who knew that's even possible.)

Although, I have to say their window prices were high, especially since the window manufacter is someone I've never even heard of. And the only difference they could tell me about between their on Home Depot's was that their windows are foam filled and welded. But HD's are welded (I don't know about the foam) so...why twice the price?

Anyway, here's the brochure sample thing they gave me. I'm pretty positive I'm going with the Heritage Cream. The pic came out weird so the color looks equally weird. I'll take better pics when I pick up the siding.

Bruce Springsteen Stole my Contractors!

Okay, so he didn't steal them, they left me for him. Apparently he's playing in PA so they're heading down there for a four day weekend. Before they left, they got a quite a bit done.

They re-did the wall with the picture windows. I was hesitant to spend the money on it, but it turned out to be money well spent. Apparently, the other guys just nailed the windows in without a frame or flashing strips (?) or anything. So when he pulled them out, an actual stream of water poured out of the channel in the window. Yeeowza.

He also used spray foam insulation in any open areas of plywood in lieu of taking down every piece and starting over. Since the other guys were nail gun happy, there was no easy way to salvage and reuse the original material.

The attic ladder is in, obviously he has to finish shimming it. And all the ceiling sheetrock is up except for most of the area next to the wall that's coming down.

Here's the other side of the ceiling with the recessed lights installed.

This is how a properly installed recessed light should look.

The electric is done, with the exception of some little details. I have outlets galore and we carefully planned out which switch should turn off which lights. That takes way more effort than you think it should.He even installed nail plates over the studs where the wires run through and over the areas the other guys gouged out to prevent me from ever drilling into them and starting a fire.

The outside wall is all Tyvek-ed now, so hopefully I can pick up some fanfold insulation and a square or two of siding on Monday.