Doug & Marie's Kitchen Adventure

A daily progress journal

Archive for the ‘Daily Log’ Category

November 6: Moved In

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We’re very close now, just a few inside items, and the porchlet. Our list is down to under ten to-dos and you probably won’t be able to see many of them in the photos here. We’ve made breakfasts, lunches and dinners and enjoyed spending the last few evenings nestling in. Marie has all her favorite knick knacks on the shelves now. We’ve trialed and errored ourselves into putting the right pots and pans and silverware and glasses into the right drawers and cabinets. We’ve found the right place for the calendar. Tonight we returned our favorite art to the kitchen (thanks Bonnie). You get the idea. Here, take a look:


I have yet to wash the windows, but otherwise, this scene is complete.


The painter was here today and added another coat to the door, with one more to go. We’re looking forward to taking the masking paper off the door.


Countertops were treated today so they are now in use. Marie is definitely smiling.

I’m thinking there’s only a couple more posts in this job. Maybe a nice sunny day shot after the masking paper is off the door. And a photo of the porchlet. Might even get a picture of Joe Petrina and our architect Stephanie Tottingham next time they come over for a visit. Thanks for riding along on the journey!



Written by Doug

November 6, 2009 at 9:54 pm

Posted in Daily Log

October 31: Almost

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It’s been a very busy few days around here, with all of the trades represented to do their part to get the kitchen across the finish line. We’re not quite there, but as you’ll see, almost.


East in the foreground, west in the background. Still need the beveled glass windows in the cabinets (and all the Franciscan); seal and enhancer on the soapstone, paint the trim under the windows; a few more lights. But it’s definitely useable (we’ll keep the soapstone covered until we treat it with the seal and enhancer). 


Probably one day of painter’s time with touch up and to hit a few of the late trim pieces that were added. But we’ve started to move in some things and make this place look like home.


We’ve unplugged and defrosted the “camp fridge” that has been in the green room since July and moved the cold stuff into the new fridge, which is a dream. And we’ve used the stove to boil some water! The cabinet immediately to the right of the fridge is dry stuff (cereal, etc.) The cabinet on the wall is a spice cabinet, and it’s filled.


The door went in yesterday, and it is soooo smooth and solid and nice, and weatherstripped. Remembering the door that was there (which we loved in its quirky, drafty and worn way) makes us smile. Still needs one more coat of paint, hence the masking in the windows. Door stop on the floor behind it so it doesn’t hit the radiator. Note that we’ve added the chair rail (which you can see in the east kitchen) which is a tip of the hat to the former kitchen. Shoe box out on the porchlet (which still needs to be completed: rails, pickets, column, tongue-and-groove deck, etc.).

The assignment for today has been to vaccum and gently wash every surface (more like a tack cloth rub on everything). Here’s Marie’s job, which she is really looking forward to…really!


Several generations worth of Franciscan Ivy and Apple need to be washed and sorted into the cabinets.

Written by Doug

October 31, 2009 at 12:09 pm

Posted in Daily Log

October 28: Cabinet fronts, fridge and heat

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A very busy day in the kitchen: at one point we had nine guys in here, doing everything from working on the cabinets to installing the gas lines, to installing the radiator. Take a look:


A few things to look for here: cabinet and drawer fronts now in place; the gas line coming out of the floor in the spot where the oven will go tomorrow. The trim around the convection/microwave oven; the wood trim (not yet painted) under the middle windows. The baseboard on the far left. Cabinet and drawer pulls will be installed by Friday.



The east kitchen. Beveled-glass doors go into the upper cabinets. The action on the cabinet doors is so nice and smooth, it makes you want to just stand there for a while and open/close the doors (and the memory of what was there–ugh–makes that an especially nice experience).



The fridge will still nestle back a bit into the slot there. It’s a perfect fit. The plumber comes tomorrow to connect the water supply to it, and the electrician is back to heat up the appliances, install the remaining fixtures, and make them all work by adding a second circuit panel in the basement.



Here’s the radiator that used to be in the nook. It’s now installed in the west kitchen and all connected up. Unfortunately, the guys from Rainbow Heating found that the run from here to the boiler–and the rising angle of the copper pipe to get there–may be too much for the simple gravity system. It did get warm, but barely. Joe Grogan, the Rainbow boss, called tonight to talk about fixes: he was thinking about putting a tiny pump in line to this radiator. I remembered some advice that my Dad once offered about our system: he suggested that we should think about installing a pump for the entire system so that instead of waiting for the heated water to make it circulate, a pump would move things along much more quickly. So, I shared that with Joe, and he’s investigating the equipment and cost. We’ll figure it out and either way, the radiator (recently painted by Leon) is a thing of beauty in that spot.


Written by Doug

October 28, 2009 at 10:00 pm

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October 26: Floored

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Tim and his helper were here today to install the marmoleum floor, which really dresses up the room. You can see that it has multiple personalities depending on the light. Check it out:


We had a good conversation about seams, and chose to install one single piece from the nook doorway all the way through to the back door (our seams run east-west). It does give us a seam up the middle (and another one in the east kitchen about mid-counter), but there was no way to do this without having three seams. Hopefully, we’ve made the right choice by choosing to protect the highest traffic area and sink with all one piece. This photo was taken without a flash and it has a lovely warmth to it.


This shot, taken with a flash, brings out more of the blues in the floor. Hmm.

Andy the finish carpenter comes back tomorrow to complete the trim, add baseboards, etc. Big appliances on Wednesday.

Written by Doug

October 26, 2009 at 9:42 pm

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October 23: Let there be light!

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Randy the electrician was back today to connect up all the wire he pulled back in August, and to hang some of the fixtures (a bunch are still on order). These two schoolhouse fixtures are in the west kitchen, and match one in the east kitchen (see below). You can see that Hughbert finished the tile…trim needs to be added below the windows, but the tile is done. All the stuff is up on the counters because Monday the floor goes in.



Another view, taken from the door. Gary installed the convection oven/microwave today, visible on the left there under the paint. Lucy, as usual, right at my side.



Taken from the east kitchen looking west. The switch on the tile above the east counter controls the under-cabinet lighting (which has not yet been installed, but looks very nice…I saw it today). I actually did tonight’s dishes in the east sink. What a treat to not have to haul the dishes up and down the stairs, and to have light!

Written by Doug

October 23, 2009 at 8:45 pm

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October 22: Making a Splash

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Splash related items today include near-completion of the tile backsplash (grout tomorrow) and installation of the sinks and faucets. They work! Water in the kitchen, yahoo.


Hughbert worked on the tile today and got it nearly finished. A few improvements and adjustments to make, and grout. Look carefully and you can see the garbage grinder on the right side under the sink, and the faucets.


Still need to put the apron trim under these windows, but you get the basic idea. And the sink works!



East sink (Doug’s sink) with backsplash. The flange sticking up on the right basin is the stock fitting that the plumber set there (and I removed after I took the picture). The Insinkerator flange has been installed. Note the “air switch” just right of the sprayer, which operates the disposal. I can hardly wait to put these into use. I’m not carrying the basin of dishes downstairs tonight: I’ll do the dishes right there.

We met with Joe today, and his wrap-up guy Gary, and set the remaining timeline: Floor on Monday and Tuesday; appliances, cabinet work, radiator installation and minor painting Wednesday; more of the same and return of electrician and plumber on Thursday to hook up appliances; door installation on Friday. And then we can move in! One week from tomorrow. There are still some minor items, including completion of the porchlet, but it feels like we’re rounding the last bend.

Written by Doug

October 22, 2009 at 6:16 pm

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October 20: Nook Floor Complete

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October 20, 2009: Marie inspects the newly refinished old oak floor in the nook. 20 years ago, when we first moved into the house, we started to peel up tile that had been glued down on this floor, but didn’t get too far before realizing that peeling it all off, and  restoring the original floor was just too big a job in the context of everything else we had to do. Now it’s done, and it looks great.

The floor guys finished their work today and it turned out very nicely. They tell us the boards on the left were replaced many years ago, and that the boards on the right are original. You can also see the perpendicular boards right at Lucy’s feet. They had been pretty messed up over time, but the guys did a nice job of restoring them. So there’s no transition bar between the floor in the nook and the floor in the dining room, which is nice. We’re expecting a small transition piece into the new kitchen once the new floor goes down, but they’ll be installed at virtually the same grade.

The now-perfect floor highlights the far-less-than-perfect finish on the wainscot and other trim in the nook, so refinishing the vertical surfaces in there is coming onto the radar screen. Earlier in the project, Marie made a strong push on painting all the woodwork in the nook: wainscot, trim, etc. I think she’s relenting on this for now. We are carefully considering having a booth and table built for the nook, along the lines of something you might see in a cozy restaurant.

No tile today…that will be tomorrow. More pictures to follow then.

Written by Doug

October 20, 2009 at 6:23 pm

Posted in Daily Log