Outlets & Patched Walls!

Turns out it is pretty hard to keep up with a blog while in the midst of a giant remodel… Actually it’s sort of hard keeping up with everything while the house is a bit torn up. But, I’m not complaining!!

Things are moving right along.  We are motivated to get this kitchen done! And it seems like we are nearly done with all the behind the walls and in the attic stuff that takes so much work (Can we ever thank you enough Jonathan?) but doesn’t show much… now we get to see the changes a little more!! Look at this pretty outlet


This is over where our coffee station shelves will be. the slider will control the pendant lights, then lots of plugs for my coffee gadgets and the last one there is all USB… I even bought a pack of lightning cords for all of us Iphone users… no dead phones in this kitchen! 🙂


So let’s see, this weekend:

Floors were glued down around the edges

The gas line has been put in the wall for the cooktop

The old hood pieces have been removed and the hole patched up since we will have to move the new one over a bit.

wiring for the pendant lights and outlets

more sanding the walls and prepping for texture/paint

There were a lot of things that just needed to be figured out, regarding install. Like the hood and deciding if I just bought the wrong one or not. And the wiring for the oven when it’s time for that… etc.  (Ryan and Jonathan have used google, youtube, and our installation manuals more than ever before I think…. How cool that we can seriously figure out anything?? thanks internet! 🙂 )

I’m sure there was more but it’s really hard to keep track these days!


We had a few delays, just realizing in our motivation to get finished we forgot things need drying time and we needed to schedule when others could come to help with things like the gas line and texturing, etc. But we really are moving right a long!

I have struggled with frustration over not being able to be a part of the work as much as I would like, with the boys needing attention and just needing to be out-of-the-way. Though I’m sure there hasn’t been much I could have done up to this point, I love doing stuff like this and I’m looking forward to the days coming that will be filled with stuff I can learn to do!!


This week we look forward to  texture for the walls and then us girls get to paint!! And so if everything goes well with this week, the weekend could find us installing cabinets and turning this empty space into a kitchen!! 🙂

My goal for the next couple days will be to get the rest of this house in some kind of order… seriously, we need to have clean clothes even during all of this stuff??? haha I’ll catch up on laundry I suppose and maybe even try to dust, sweep, vacuum… I sort of gave in to the mess that has extended everywhere but it’s time to get some of it under control.  I also plan on some play dates with the boys and getting them out of this house. They have been doing really well during this project but I will try to just focus on fun for them in between work in the next couple of days.


What a blessing our friends have been to our family through all of this project. It’s amazing and I’m already loving what has been done!!


here’s to another week!

Floors are here!

This post may contain affiliate links to products and services we love. By making purchases through the links, your price remains the same but I will earn a small commission that helps to fund this site and maybe even my coffee obsession. All recommendations and opinions are always 100% my own.

This week the focus has changed from tearing down the old kitchen to beginning to build up the new! yay!

There was a lot of preps for walls, wiring, etc. all through out the week. and then on the weekend the guys did the flooring! and I just love it!!

Dad and Ryan working on the wall

We bought a bamboo plank flooring from a sale at lumber liquidators. I love how it feels on bare feet. And I think the color is very peaceful!


My favorite thing about seeing the flooring in, is that I’m finally able to see our vision coming to life. AND it seems to be working! hahaha what do you know? I might actually be able to design a kitchen!! 🙂 *At the very least pick awesome floors! And now it feels like the rest is on it’s way! So, that’s exciting too!

working on the floor

new floors

floors It’s hard to show the actual color in a picture but these ones are pretty close I think.

It was a hard day of work for the men and I’m so thankful for all the help!

Here they are pretty excited about the final piece!!

down to the last piece   putting in the last piece!

The boys have had a lot of fun with all this extra space and I enjoyed playing with them on the new floors, they are so nice!

trains on the floor

trains on the new floors



In other news….

It’s beginning to feel a lot like summer around here (the guys had to work through some 100+ days already, YIKES)

The boys are pretty excited about our new swimming pool, though they didn’t think they could survive the anticipation as we set it up!

swimming pool time We were given this pool, it’s an Intex and is really nice!

You can order them on amazon, check it out here

And my Mom made the boys a sand tent this week!!

It’s pretty awesome! The boys love it! And I like that I can zip it up when they aren’t playing in it!

sand tent If you’d like to make your own the tents themselves are pretty inexpensive!

Walmart has some on sale right now

This barnyard tent is so cute! and there are lots of other designs to choose from too!



and sand like this…

.5Cuft Play Sand


My Mom put a board in the bottom to keep the edge of the door from falling down and this made it sort of more like a sand “box”.

Kitchen Demo

Friday was crazy awesome— DIY Kitchen demo day!!!!!

We removed the appliances, turned off electricity and cut off the water from under the sink, etc. ( I didn’t, so I actually have no idea how to do that stuff :)…… just being real)

But what I did do was hit those cupboards and tile with hammers!!!! It was really really fun!

Here’s a little slow-mo action of the guys destroying the counter!!!!

Notes: (If you are looking at a project like this, these are just observations)

Prepare for a mess… I know, I know, I was prepared for a mess.. but it was a pretty big one 🙂   And it has extended far beyond the kitchen area… there are boxes piled in our spare room and our Master bedroom.. but even the living room, pictures had to be removed from the wall that shares the kitchen, because our attic entrance is in the closet we currently use as a pantry, that’s sort of a mess too! 🙂 But all worth it, I’m sure.

We didn’t think about things like dust pans for picking up all the scraps. So, a big dustpan would have been nice, We did use a big tub to throw all the random little pieces into and then tossed into the back of the truck. a wheelbarrow would have worked great for that as well.  (the men are taking it all to the dump this morning.) The Shop-Vac we purchased was wonderful. Once we picked up all the bigger pieces, the vacuum took care of the rest very easily! The boys even had fun helping with that job!

Also, I would suggest plenty of protective equipment. glasses, gloves, wear the right shoes (in our first videos we do not have proper shoes on for this kind of work.. but I went and changed shortly after)

We had a lot of fun once we brought the boys home from Papa and Grandma’s house (what would we do without Grandparents???) Daddy asked William to take his cup from the car and put it in the sink… haha. William’s huge smile was awesome when he opened the door and realized there was no sink. Check out the video.

So, we accomplished a lot in the first day! removed all of the old kitchen, removed the side wall. Began opening the doorway, removing the pocket door and moving the outlets and light switches. We also pulled up all the carpet in the dining room!! YAY!

There were quite a few “little” things that had to be addressed. We ended up putting extra support up in the attack just to be sure everything that needs to be supported is. Deciding how far to cut back the doorway, how large of a column we will need to keep for the other side, a pipe needs to be relocated so that we don’t have to have a giant column.

We are so thankful for our friend Jonathan, who knows more than we do about all this stuff and the stuff he doesn’t know? He’s willing to figure out with us, so, that’s awesome!

Next up.. dump run, finishing the door way, box out the column, wall repair, prep for flooring…. and it’s only day 2!

Here’s a video of day number 1!

Day #2 has gone well so far! The guys are continuing to work while I work on getting two very excited, tired boys to bed!

Today the guys got all the trash to the dump.  We finished up the new wider doorway into the dining room, set up the column, took off all baseboards, Finished up the outlets and switches, patched up some drywall.  We cut out the rest of the carpet that needed to be removed. I’m sure a few other things….. We’ve just finished smoothing out the holes in the drywall so we’ll have a smooth surface to lay the tile, wallpaper and a couple of places we’ll even be painting.

Day 2
  making sure our guys are eating, and then doing dishes in the bathtub! haha

Day 3 ( a little lighter day today so we all can have some church/family time)

But the guys still got a lot accomplished today…. Boxed in the column, and door frame finished patching up walls, and more floor prep… oh and another run to Lowes 🙂

                  column other viewdoor framed out

Tomorrow Day 4!

~This post has been shared at www.lifeoffaithblog.com/momstheword–livingforhim.blogspot.comhttp://themrstee.com/2016/05/

We have been working for months… for this day to come!!!

Months and months of preparation and planning have all come down to this weekend!

This ol’ kitchen is on it’s way out!


Here’s a little summary of what we have been doing so far.

(We have never done this before and have had little to no professional help in this sooooo we might have done it all wrong as far as order of events etc… but eh, we are here!)

The beginning of the year Ryan started asking a lot of questions about the kitchen and how much money I thought we would need if we were to redo the kitchen. He had been looking at our savings/finances and watching me struggle to get drawers to just open 🙂

So I began to pile some estimates. He helped me search for appliances, I knew I wanted white cabinets and figured IKEA to be the best bargain.  I had so much fun compiling all my design ideas (you know those ones that you save on pinterest or Houzz.. for that some day when you get to design parts of your house?)

So to begin we talked to our friends Jonathan and Tiffani about helping out with the project, We are blessed with such great friends!

We decided to buy up all the appliances we wanted to replace first. We wanted the convenience of time to allow for finding the best deals. The majority of them being purchased at sears outlet. See my previous post here about appliances.

There are lots of little things to decide about, especially since we are removing a part of 2 walls. one to open into the other room and the other to widen the doorway into the dining room.  We also decided to widen the entire kitchen by moving the counter with the sink into the family room by about 10 inches!

So for awhile we have just been buying buying and buying all the little (and big!) components of the kitchen. The Ikea cabinets and some organization things!  Read about our IKEA purchasing experience here.

I picked out some awesome elements like a wallpaper for a section of one wall and an amazing sink, faucet, pendant lighting, tile for the backsplash.. etc.  I planned to make a full shopping list eventually so stay tuned!


For now I’ll just leave a few before pictures here……. and I’ll return with a Demo update soon. Just a couple more hours before the sledge hammers fly!!! 🙂


kitchen BEFORE

This is looking in from the play room/family room. All of these upper cabinets will go in order to open everything up.



Kitchen BEFORE

these drawers have been a challenge for awhile now!

kitchen BEFORE


It’s Kitchen week!!

It’s finally here! I’m so nervous but mostly just crazy excited!
There is much to do these few days before demo begins..and because I’m an uber plan- ahead kind of girl, I’m freaking out a little, that I haven’t done more preparations.. but we will be fine! And now that it’s here, I will be 1000% on kitchen prep 🙂

I’ve made my menu for nearly a month without a kitchen, I’ll be making frozen crock pot meals and microwave ready lunches. And we will be BBQing a ton! I’m even going to attempt “baking” frozen french fries on the grill for the boys! Thanks Pinterest! I’ll be sure to share some of my recipes! Or you can follow me on Pinterest!

If you don’t love your crock pot, let me urge you to give it a shot! There are sooooo many amazing recipes, some you would never believe came out of the crock pot, seriously! 🙂

This is one of our favorites here ~ https://www.pinterest.com/pin/smothered beef burritos!!! In the crock pot!?! yes!

I think the thing that makes me the most crazy about not having a kitchen will be washing even a few dishes without a sink :/  I think I’ll get a big tub or two for the back yard and pretend we are camping… and of course we’ll be using paper products for everything we can.

We will be assembling cabinets every night this week, we started, but got distracted and then took a family vaca.. and then… anyways it’s been busy around here. So, we have 6 or 7 cabinets to build. William is super excited to help put more drawers together!

Then I’ll pack up the kitchen and move anything we will still need into our office.. where I’ve set up our make shift kitchen!

My beautiful sink came!!! This thing has been a pain.. choosing the size and material with the look I wanted proved to be a difficult task. And then when we finally found one.. it was out of stock… everywhere! When it finally shipped we were leaving for vacation and had to have Fedex put a vacation hold on it, but it is finally here now! And it’s HUGE, I just love this thing…..

Want to see it?

New vigo kitchen sink



It’s from Vigo, made of composite stone. 36 ” in length! It is apron front and  has 2 different faces so that you can choose which you want showing. (one side has a vertical pattern and the other is plain)

AAAHHHH!! I’m sooo glad I chose a giant sink! I Can’t wait to see it in the kitchen!   Hey, maybe since it was so hard to pick it and get it here.. it will be super easy, smooth sailing for installation (let’s hope so)!


I can’t think of anything else we are doing right now except prepping food, staring at our beautiful new things all piled in the garage 🙂 and running to Lowes for more supplies!


I am counting down the days (and there aren’t many more now) for that first hammer to fall!

UPDATE: Before I could even post this (I think I started to Monday) So much has happened. We have been very busy getting things ready for Demo this weekend.
I pretty much cooked and prepped food for about 24 hours!! But now our Freezers are stocked and I feel so much more ready to be able to still feed my family during the chaos that is fast approaching 🙂

We (and our friend Jonathan ) have been to Lowes a couple times this week. I have to go again tonight to finalize a paint choice and return a couple of things.

Today we will finish packing everything away.

The boys were “helping” me pack the Tupperware yesterday…

boys helping in the old kitchen




Tomorrow it begins!

I’m praying for safety and wisdom throughout this whole project. That we can figure out what needs to be done and how and that we all don’t hate the process.


We are so very thankful for our friends willingness to help us with this gigantic project! And I’m overwhelmed by the the blessing of getting to remodel our kitchen! yay!!

I’m also praying for our boys (and patience with them for me) while everything is a little mixed up from the norm. It’s hard to figure out what and where they should go while we are working.. I am very thankful for the helpful Grandparents and babysitters we’ve enlisted for help with them. But, I know our 4 year old likes things “normal”, and is super curious, so I’m praying it isn’t to ruff on him during all of this process. On the days we aren’t working, I am planning on taking them to the park and play dates/drives… just to keep us out of the construction zone! 🙂

Stay tuned for the next post covering Demo weekend and the first sledge hammer swing! 🙂


Buying Ikea cabinets

We picked up our cabinets a couple weeks ago!

There is now a huge pile (ok a few huge piles) of boxes in our garage just waiting for us to test our marriage and communication skills while we assemble them! 🙂 hehehe It’s going to be GREAT!!!20160415_214807286_iOS


It took a lot of thinking, measuring, planning before we could pick them up.   I used sticky notes all over my existing kitchen to make sure I have a spot for everything in the new one. Then I attempted to use the Ikea Kitchen Planner on my computer.  It is a fantastic idea, but the actual program is very difficult to work with because it doesn’t load, jumps around, and takes forever!  So, eventually I got fed up with trying that and stuck with just good ol’  pen and paper!

Kitchen Remodel

This was when we were deciding if we could extend the countertops and fit in another cabinet! Because we are removing this wall we have a lot of options here!

Kitchen remodel decisions

Sticky notes everywhere and we taped the measurements on the floor to make sure it was all fitting correctly!

If you are looking into Ikea Kitchen cabinets make sure you pick up ALL of their catalogs and books. They have separate books for cabinets, faucets, sinks, appliances.  It will give you a full picture of what they have to offer.  In the end I took the cabinet catalog and cut out all the cabinets I wanted.


See here:

planning our IKEA kitchen


Move cabinets around ALOT! Make sure you really like how it feels and of course that it makes sense. (if you are using existing pipes and things like that you’ll need to make sure some things like sinks are where they belong!)


Then when you are ready to buy, if you can time your trip with the kitchen sales that IKEA has a couple times a year.. you will be very glad you did!!  The current sale we landed on was 15% back on your full purchase on an IKEA gift card.. which was perfect for purchasing the microwave my amazing husband found in the as is department and some of the fun accessories for inside the drawers.

We decided to go with all drawers instead of shelves and cupboard doors on the bottom cabinets. I like that the drawers pull all the way out and I like the organization so much better!

Now for putting them all together… we’ll need to assemble a couple cabinets/drawers a week in order to have them ready before demo weekend!


So exciting!


Let me know if you have any questions about IKEA.. I’m most certainly not an expert but I have been learning a lot! 🙂


This post has been shared at: lifeoffaithblog and momstheword

Kitchen appliances



Wow! If you haven’t shopped for appliances lately, you’ll be surprised by all there is out there!! I know I was like a kid in a candy store….

Can I just say that as a whole this project has been a bit overwhelming? I feel like I shouldn’t even say that, since I am so abundantly blessed to get to build a new kitchen.. but there are a ton of things to decide and learn. Do you know how many cook tops there are? Or how much power a range hood needs to have?? yeah me neither! hahaha But I’m trying!

I am having a lot of fun learning about the different things we can incorporate into the kitchen and how it’s done! Thanks Youtube and pinterest!

But, boy oh boy! once you’ve made one choice you have 5 other decisions to sift through based on it.. What color cabinets? Will that match with the floor?  What is the difference between a plinth and a toe kick anyway?? How many outlets do we need/want, what should they look like?  Thankfully we have great friends who are doing so much for us!


Anyways, it is super fun and I totally want to buy power tools now! My new past time is walking through Lowes and Home Depot and I don’t even mind it! 🙂

Anyways, back to appliances! We discovered Sears Outlet!! And found a fantastic deal on our wall oven and dishwasher. Sears Outlet sells items that are labeled “scratch and dent” so these are open box, floor display models, and such. But  both of our appliances came with no visible scratches or dents in them. the Sales man couldn’t even find one to record on our sales slip!! And yet we got them both for 45-55% off!

We also plan on going here for our fridge when the time comes (the fridge is one of the things we have decided to wait and save up for later)


check it out:



We have also found a few things on Amazon of course!

We sure do love Amazon!


  This cooktop is one of the most exciting things for the new kitchen! I finally get to have a gas cooktop! So it took me a little while to choose this one. It’s a GE Cafe

And look at this salt box I ordered:



We also just picked up a built-in Microwave at Ikea! * Ikea appliances are from whirlpool!   Ryan found it in the as is department for 45% off!! It had been used as a display model. Plus, because we were there purchasing our cupboards on one of the last day of their kitchen sale, we received a gift card with 15% of our purchase price back!! So, totally paid for the microwave and some of my list of fun accessories 🙂



Gift cards and saving money!

** This blog may contain affiliate links, shopping through them helps pay for my caffeine addiction and maybe a pair of shoes, thanks so much! 🙂

Did you know there are websites out there that have discounted gift cards for sale????

Sometimes you might get a gift card to a place you don’t like, or maybe don’t have a location near you or something… these sites will buy them from you and then sell them to people who want them for a discount. Its genius really!

There are a few websites out there that list sites with gift cards. But I want to caution you to make sure you know the companies policies for getting what you are expecting and returns and such!


We decided this could be a way to help us save a little in the kitchen budget since we knew we would be buying a lot of products from Home Depot and Lowes. We ended up saving  a good size chunk and had a great experience with one company in particular, Raise.com


Check out the selection here!


We have only purchased gift cards for those two hardware stores so far but there are sooooo many different gift cards to choose from, we will definitely be buying more…  how about restaurants? Starbucks? Grocery stores? Going on a trip soon? how about saving with hotel and travel gift cards before you plan it?


A little about our experience….

One of the e- cards we purchased for Home Depot was delivered to my email but when I went to purchase something online it came back with a 0 balance. Since this card was suppose to be for nearly $500. I started to freak out just a bit.  I spoke to someone on Home Depots live chat, they checked the balance and said they also saw a 0 balance and that the remainder of the card had been used in some store in Georgia. ( I had this conversation emailed to me for my records) I then called Raise customer service and held my breath, hoping for a good experience and a quick fix!!

It was wonderful!! I explained what happened and without any trouble at all they said they would refund us the amount we spent on the card!!! He was glad to hear I had checked with the store first and had a copy of my conversation.. I forwarded that to them for their records!!

The whole interaction was pleasant and painless! Our refund was credited to our account within a couple of days. and because it was so great and they really stand by their 100% guarantee so we decided to keep shopping with them!  I think you’ll enjoy saving with Raise.com as well! So, check it out

(So far we have saved $245.00 at stores we would be shopping at anyways for our kitchen!!)


The Journey Begins…


I am so very excited about remodeling our Kitchen!

Our house hasn’t had many improvements since it was built. We’ve only been here a few years and well, you know priorities have to come first… so we still have the paint on the walls that the bank chose before we bought it… and our dining room still has carpet under the table. (who does that??) But little by little we are working to personalize things.

Our Kitchen is desperately in need of attention. Drawers have been falling apart, the bottoms just coming away from the whole door any time you open them. My wonderful husband knows I’ve been trying to manage, but it has become frustrating.

I would like to say here that we have never ever attempted a project like this before…. I don’t know if you could look to us for much how to’s but I will share how we are going about this and hopefully give some helpful tips along the way!!

For us the plan to remodel all started with Ryan asking me if I could get a ruff estimate together of how much it would cost to do what I wanted to the kitchen.

First thing we did was renewed our membership for Consumer Reports. You can sign up for a year or monthly membership. Which gives you access to their reviews on the website.

Here’s a little something from their site about what they do:
Formed as an independent, nonprofit organization in 1936, Consumer Reports serves consumers through unbiased product testing and ratings, research, journalism, public education, and advocacy. We stand firmly behind the principle that consumer products and services must be safe, effective, reliable, and fairly priced. We insist that manufacturers, retailers, government agencies, and others be clear and honest. We advocate for truth and transparency wherever information is hidden or unclear. We push companies to quickly address and remedy issues with their products and services.

They Rate and review so many things. So, when we are about to make a purchase, we like to look up what Consumer Reports says about them and of course they have a handy App to take with you to the store.

For this project the first thing we wanted to decide about was our appliances. This way we know the dimensions of each for the cupboards and location of everything. So we looked up what Consumer Reports said about dishwashers, Cook tops, Ovens, and fridges. But it doesn’t stop there. They even rate flooring, sinks, counter top materials..


up next shopping for appliances and get great deals……

This ol’ kitchen.. is out of here!!

20160314_031554780_iOS        outdated kitchen

OH I just cannot wait for the first sledge hammer to fall! Tearing out this kitchen will be an exciting day!!


But first, lots and lots of planning, deciding and then changing my decisions….


And can’t forget, talking to great, wonderful, brave friends that will be helping with this huge project!!

When we first started thinking about getting to the kitchen, we needed to set a budget. So we could decide if we had enough to actually accomplish the task, so at least for the most part we can complete the room!  We also quickly decided on a few items we could wait on (and save up for) so that we could focus on everything else..

We have decided to put the new fridge and the floors on the end of the list. So, if our budget runs short we will just start a savings plan for those two things. Our fridge, though not fancy, works just fine for now. and bare floors might be nice… at least the not caring about them looking nice would be a welcome break for awhile! 🙂

We signed up for Consumer Reports to start our research on appliances and things.  You can sign up for a year or you can just get a monthly membership. We really enjoy being able to look up appliances and find ratings and reviews. They are a bit more reliable then customer reviews since these are professional tests. Consumer Reports also have an app. So when you are out shopping for appliances you can look up different models and you can save products that you like!