Our new kitchen an dining room is, of course, a work in progress. But I can proudly (and with great relief) say that most of the work is completed. WHAT a summer it has been.
In case you’re new here, we renovated the kitchen and dining room of my 1855 house. BY OURSELVES. No professional help. I did spend long hours reading books and manuals, though, so I did self-educate myself on methods and regulations.
But we did it! And I still marvel at our accomplishment. We not only gutted and restored these two rooms, but we redid the entire electrical service, redid the water supply system and added some drains, and are in the process of replacing the central heating system.
It was supposed to be me, my husband, and the kids who did this. But my husband (a substitute postal carrier), who’d been out of work for months before our renovation, was suddenly called into work almost EVERY DAY. The kids and I were on our own. Thank the Lord, some of the guys from our church came over every Sunday to help us out with the really tough stuff, like wiring the baseboard heaters, installing furring strips on the ceiling, and hanging some sheetrock. And later, my husband did get some time to install a totally new water supply system with PEX piping.
I’m exhausted, remembering it all. I just can’t believe we did it.
Here are some BEFORE photos. It pains me to look at them!
These were taken once we started the demolition. Our trusty demolition crew was me and one of my daughters. The other daughter and the older son sometimes joined in on the fun.
I built this monster of a window frame. This side of the wall was only loosely supported; the support beam had been hacked away by previous owners to make room for that lousy aluminum window. I freaked when I saw second-storey studs just hanging within the wall cavity! So this new frame is a monster– it not only houses the new window, but supports this entire side of the house.
I spent a lot of energy and time with the new window frame. I wanted it to be PERFECT. If there was ANYTHING that was going to be perfect, it would be this. No one would ever see the frame (except you guys, lol), but I would know it was there, insidethe wall, sitting PERFECTLY.
The new window plopped in the cavity. I didn’t even have to shim it, because the frame was so perfectly level and measured so accurately that no amending was necessary. What a glorious moment for us!
There’s so much more to tell– come back for Part 2. 🙂