Seriously, I’m Not Starting the Kitchen Renovation

I’m not. Because I’ve got a barn to paint, and a garden to weed, and a pergola to build. I’ve got chickens and donkeys and bees to tend to. Plus an unfinished bathroom or two, and a dozen more outdoor projects that need to be completed before winter.


But if I was going to start the kitchen renovation, I’d definitely tear out the floor…


Which, okay. I did that. But the dumpster was here… that was just being efficient.

However, when I do finally decide to start working on the kitchen, I’ll definitely want to reconfigure a few of the cabinets.


The large pantry and wall oven have always driven me a little nuts. It looks like a big cabinet-tumor on the left side of the kitchen, and throws the balance of everything out of whack. That doorway? WTF.

So if I was going to start the kitchen renovation– which obviously I’m not– I’d definitely buy a few replacement base and wall cabinets. And maybe a shelf for the end of the island to extend it out a bit more…


And, actually, if I’m being honest, I found myself with some floor plans wandering around Lowe’s on a rainy day a few weekends ago, and decided I might as well order some cabinets to have at the house just in case I find the time to start the kitchen renovation. Which I won’t. Clearly.

I also really like having a functioning kitchen, you guys. Remember that time I lived in a garage and didn’t have a functioning kitchen for two years? Pizza rolls cooked on the grill in the middle of winter have their charms, but… I actually like being able to cook real vegetables now.

Well, so, here’s a thing… turns out there are a lot of good Fourth of July sales on appliances this week. So, you know, I figured it would also probably a good idea to buy the new stove that will replace the wall-oven and cooktop, so that when I do decide to start renovating the kitchen I won’t be without appliances.

I’d love to have a gas stove, but since my heat runs on fuel oil, and I’m really not interested in running a propane line in to the house just for the stove, I went with this electric one…

Looks pretty good, all considering, and gets great reviews across the board. I used to stress about this shit, but now I just make my decision and move on because I have some feelings about things I put in this house, but mostly I have feelings about how much food I can grow, and whether or not I need some pygmy goats (I do, right?) and I don’t care to spend that much time worrying about something I’m basically going to use to heat up water to boil fresh eggs…

So, really, I’ve been thinking about my plan for the kitchen every time I’ve set foot in this room for the last, uh, three years. When this goes down I know exactly how I’m going to attack it:

  • Step 1: Fill all the nail holes in the wood paneling, one section of the room at a time (because if I try to do the whole thing at once, I’ll lose my shit… do you know how many nail holes there are in this room? Thousands.)
  • Step 2: Replace cabinets and trim where necessary.
  • Step 3: Widen entryway (move electrical where necessary.)
  • Step 4: Paint cabinets and paneling (which I expect to take no less than a thousand coats of paint.)
  • Step 5: Mod existing cabinets for better function.
  • Step 6: New sink and hardware.
  • Step 7: New counters.
  • Step 8: New flooring.
  • Step 9: Install wood stove.
  • Step 10: Refinish kichen table, chairs, and bar stools.

But obviously I’m not going to attack it right now… because that would be crazy.




44 Responses

  1. I am not going to buy a bed now. Just look on Craigslist for later in the year when we are finished re-doing the porch before we get more calls from the city.

    Oh look. There is a sleigh bed just an hour away. It’s oak!

    Well we can paint the panelling instead of removing it, because that will mean new wallboard etc. which will be expensive. But not something we will do before we actually mud the seams of the bathroom walls from three years ago.

    Thin Mint is perfect. I will just do one section of the wall at a time. In the evenings after we are done other stuff.

    I wonder if we can get a turn of the century light shade for the bedroom … . Heads to e-Bay.

  2. Christ, I can’t even get my house cleaned and you’re ‘not’ renovating your kitchen on top of everything else. I am amazed at your energy and drive.

    You completely need pygmy goats so that I get to see them on your blog – my father wouldn’t get me any when I was younger. Something about them getting up to too much mischief?

    1. Rest assured my house isn’t ever clean… I’m too busy not starting new projects to worry about dishes and laundry 😉 (And I swear it’s less about energy and drive, more about alcohol!)

      1. I did once gut a room while my then husband was passed out in the next room. He woke up to take his contacts out and the drywall was gone.

        I am really enjoying your site though – and I use it to keep myself moving forward on my own little projects!

  3. Yes! You NEED pygmy goats RIGHT NOW. Because my dream is chickens and pygmy goats and I can only have them by living vicariously thru you at the moment. So yes. Cute, adorable pygmy goats.

  4. Did I miss the blog when you tiled the floor? You amaze me with your drive and energy!!!

  5. Goats would be truly wonderful and good company for the donkeys. And they will graze the stuff the donkeys won’t eat. And they can clear any brush easy-peasy. You NEED goats

  6. I love it!! Good luck! Can’t wait to see how it goes.
    (And yes, you totally need goats haha. Nigerian Dwarf goats are on my wishlist for next year, I hope)

  7. I’ve always thought you needed goats to go with your donkeys and chickens! I have Nigerian Dwarf goats but Pygmy’s are good too! You have to have a really good fence though. My Nigerian babies are sometimes so small they can easily get through 3 inch square fence panels. They are so cute though and so much fun to watch!

  8. I bought the same electric range about a month ago. Went back and forth about adding the gas line and going gas, or just living with an electric in my new house. I am a big cook and have never cooked on electric in my life, so I was a bit freaked out. I have been pleasantly surprised with how much I don’t hate it. Good choice. Looks good and functions as it should.

  9. pygmy or dwarf goats would be quite functional and prolly fit in well. Thinking you be needing a comfortable area to process all the garden reaps coming this year (gonna be a good one) hence the Kitchen Renovation your “not starting” looks like step # 1 hasn’t began 😉
    Will you put the Samsung where the wall oven is and install an over the stove vent hood with cabinet above,
    constant growth…

  10. Filling nail holes doesn’t count as starting the renovation. That’s prep work before paint, so you’re just *getting ready* to start…

  11. You’re hilarious! I love reading your blog. I too have way too many projects at any given time and in any given stage of start to finish.

  12. That’s what I said when I walked into Ikea while they were doing their 20% off Kitchen sale. $10,000 over budget and a year later, I have a beautiful kitchen…all DIYey. (Well, the kitchen remodel wound up including taking out a wall, new attic insulation, new window, etc.) That’s the last time I innocently walk into Ikea…

    Looking forward to seeing how it turns out!

  13. I suspect you might have unhappy news about guinea keets, but what’s up with them? You know… shit happens on a farm.

  14. “I’m basically going to use to heat up water to boil fresh eggs…”

    A microwave can do that. I immediately gave up forever using the stove to make hard boiled eggs after I tried the Nordicware microwave egg boiler. No, I do not work for Nordicware, I just like perfect, easy to peel, hardboiled eggs each time with no watching a pot.

  15. Yes to pygmy goats!!! I have to live vicariously through other people’s animals, as my hubby will ONLY let us have one dog. Maybe I just need to replace him!! No, just kidding. I’ll keep him around a bit longer.

    And does anyone else think those cabinet knobs look like eyes? They don’t look like that close up, do they?

  16. You are an inspiration… how you manage to do all this is incredible. Really enjoying reading your blog and can’t wait for more!

  17. YES Pygmy goats!!! That’s definately on my list for our Maine farm hoping in the next couple months. I do have to say Kit you inspire me to keep on going with house rennovations on 2 houses almost 300 miles apart. I’m looking forward to the day when the CT home is sold and we’re on the farm full time, nugs, mini donkeys, pygmy goats, veggie gardens to go with my current abundant flower gardens, a cow and a pig….. Go for it while you can 🙂 My brother and I built a small kitchen over Christmas at the farm, and i put down a new dining room floor while the guys went on a snomobile weekend further north! I love creating, fixing and a glass of wine or 8!

  18. I have to say you absolutely do need Pygmy goats. I have a pygmy, a Nigerian dwarf, and a cross of the two. They have seriously brought so much joy to our little farm! Everyone should have them!

    I can’t wait to see what you are NOT doing in the kitchen!

  19. Lands woman….hold up on the pygmys for just a dang minute. No telling how many projects and chores and disasters they will bring. Don’t take on so much that your eye starts twitching. Actually, I’m convinced you could probably figure out how to build yourself wings and fly, if you wanted too. I’m just thinking about all those other things on your list. Personally, that wood in the kitchen, it would be painted, like yesterday. But hey, so far so good with all your projects and I enjoy reading about them.

  20. I say hire someone to finish the upstairs bathroom. The goats would be a blast!

  21. Just found your blog a few weeks ago (linked from Pretty Handy Girl). It’s easily my favorite now. You’re hilarious, and you inspire me. I’m in with the crowd for goats. I need to live vicariously through this kind of shenanigan.

  22. It’s always good to have a plan! Hopefully you’ll have some time to remodel your kitchen quickly so you’ll have the kitchen you and you won’t have to live off grilled pizza rolls again.

  23. Good enough! Your project seems to me pretty perfect though I am passing very time and that’s why not being able to move forwards to my new little project but soon I will be free for doing it. Thanks

  24. My first step – I got the kitchen and bathroom floors tested for asbestos. It was negative – YAYY! Next step – demolition.

  25. Hehe! Well the fact is you’ve already on your kitchen renovation xoxo! I wonder if you even suspected you’ll have your mom at your side! From a standpoint of a professional kitchen refurbishment handyman I can only explicit my curiosity. It’s really impressive that you do all occasional domestic repairs and renovations by yourself. Other home owners will never make it without handyman services! Cheers!

  26. Goodness me! I find it difficult finding the energy to do simple cleaning tasks around the house let alone kitchen renovations.

    I know a few friends who attempted it themselves and hit a wall very early on. I kind of depends on the level of expertise you have to be honest.

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