Planning an Ikea Kitchen Renovation

via House Tweaking
I knew I wanted to gut a kitchen before we found our new house. I should really use the word we here but that would be a lie. Andrew is one hundred percent (I think) on board for the new kitchen but he could have lived with an existing kitchen. I could not and one of these days I will explain why.

I don't know anyone with an Ikea kitchen but I do know they have a good reputation thanks to the countless blog posts and articles I've read backing up that claim. I also know that kitchen renovations can be costly, and we have to work within the realm of our financial reality. I also don't like paying too much for things (unless you're a pair of Loeffler Randall soft as butter leather boots) and we all know how affordable Ikea can be. But really none of that would have mattered had I not continually discovered that all of the kitchens I liked were in fact Ikea (like the one pictured above). Who knew design magazines were full of Ikea kitchens? Definitely not me.

It took me two trips to the house to decide that I was on board with it. It was one of those love at first sight things for Andrew, and I had already decided I wasn't going to like it before we set foot in the door that first evening. I just spent six years of my life in a house that never felt like home, I didn't want to make that mistake again.

When the deal was done and we went in to meet with our kitchen designer... I cringed when the current homeowner asked what we planned on doing with their kitchen. It's going, all of it, was what I wanted to say, but instead I softly explained how we were intent on having exactly what we wanted this time around and that we were going to take it apart carefully and sell it online.

The verdict is still out on how careful we will be with its removal but the day after we close, that puppy is coming out.

We decided to hire a designer and installer pre new home purchase as well. The last thing I want is for any part of this renovation to scream diy and after having spent one evening playing around on the ikea designer we had an idea of how bad stockholm syndrome could become if we didn't seek professional help. If you're reading this and you did it all yourself and your kitchen looks fantastic, well good for you.

Right now we've made the big decisions, we've purchased appliances, ordered countertops through Emerald Tile here in Ottawa and ordered the faucet and sink. Deciding on the doors for the cabinets was probably the single most difficult decision to date because when we started, we weren't going to use Ikea doors at all, we were going to go with Semi Handmade Doors.

Decisions that still keep me up at night include... deciding on cabinet hardware, backsplash, lighting, floating shelves, nook countertop and a rug (because every kitchen my eyes love is home to a fabulous rug).

I will share more details as they firm up. Hope you're enjoying your Monday!

Moving Back Home

We're here. I'm sitting in a house I never lived in and now call home.

That's right. Picture me rooting through cupboards as Andrew asks me where anything is. "I don't know. I never lived here..." is something I find myself saying far too often.

Because I never lived here.

We moved in with my parents.

It's temporary I repeat to myself and to them because it is. We invaded their space.. all five of us. That's the four of us plus the little one that I still care for.. for just a few more weeks. Because we're making changes everywhere in our life and I will feel that freedom very soon.

Our house sold in one fabulous day. That house had been closing in on me for years and the minute we decided to sell, everything started changing for the better. We closed on it today and walking through those empty rooms felt ninety percent good and ten percent strange. We get the keys to our new home in a little over a month. Of course then we're going to renovate the hell out of it because that's what you do when you're us and you buy a thirty year old house in the somewhat country.

So long suburbia, hello space. I can't wait to meet you.

Until then, we're sleeping in a double bed in the basement where I inevitably steal all the covers and where our remaining cat has permanently sequestered herself.

There's a stack of design magazines threatening the main floor and all of it has me so damn excited.

As for blogging. I'm back.

behind and outnumbered

It all started in February, the first week is what my foggy brain tells me. Yes it was a cold day (like every damn cold day this winter...sometimes I feel like we're living in game of thrones and this winter is actually going to last for YEARS).. either way, Alice approached me ten minutes shy of nap time and dutifully informed me that she was going to to nap but not Isla. It went like this...

Alice: my nap
Me: yes it's nap time soon
Alice: Isla awake
Me: no. It's nap time for Isla too

I thought it was odd at first and tried to tell myself that Alice was just being strange because two year olds are strange all of the time... But then we got to their room and Isla was all, no nap, my ( because my is me apparently) awake.

I laughed it off whilst internally shuddering and promptly put them to bed in their cribs and went downstairs. They're two and a half, they're going to nap until school right....

That's when the singing began. Not me in case there's any question of that... But Isla.

After thirty minutes of lullabies I went to investigate.

Just as I'd been warned, Alice was asleep and Isla...completely awake.

That was scheme number one.

In a month they've surpassed that first move with flying colours...
1. They climbed put of the cribs (actually I found a stack of books on the ground which suggests that one climbed out and then created the stack so they second could follow)
2. They figured out how to open their bedroom door
3. We took down the full rail and replaced it with a half, fully admitting to the defeat
4. Yesterday they emptied the ENTIRE contents of their closet in just under an hour

So yeah, I'm so damn behind of this whole photo a week thing but I can deal with that. What I'm not sure about yet is how I will survive with no more nap time.

that feeling

When I watched you up on stage it wasn't something new. I'd seen you up there, many times before but this time felt different. You always look right up there, like you belong there and I never really understood it. I don't think I ever really tried. But now that I find myself trying to be creative, suddenly seeing you up there seems perfect and raw and very brave.


My sister was here for far too long. She was here in time for my birthday (in December) and left last Monday. It felt like she was here forever, permanently... almost... but then we had to say goodbye, like we always do and now I know that she was here for far too long because I miss her everyday.

When Alice muttered Shmo-py-poo this morning I cringed thinking simultaneously that dammit our children have ridiculous memories and Steph's (the caller of sumo-py-poo) is so damn far away.

Luckily they've figured out how to FaceTime and have actual conversations on my iphone while I do such fun things as vacuum in the background, telling them to ignore me and head off to the playroom to talk to auntie.

we'll settle for facetime for now because we have to... we're just biding our time until she makes it big out there and then we will have no choice other than to move out there too.
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