Monday, January 19, 2015

All Tore Up From the Floor Up - Building a Kitchen From Scratch - Part 1

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After tumbling through some pretty heavy duty miracles in 2014, we purchased the farm of our dreams. Seven and 1/2 beautiful acres, room enough for my in-laws, a spacious yard, friendly neighbors, and this wonderful, oversized, super functional kitchen:

It was a little worn. It hadn't been updated since the 1980's and the floor was a little soft in spots, but look at that potential! Great counter space, a gas cook top, and the double oven my MIL had always wanted. 
A little paint and some creative updates and it could be beautiful! 
So much storage!
So practical!
We loved it.
We couldn't wait to cook in it.
So, we moved in and lived happily ever after.
But, first...this happened...

The first week we moved in...

Not exactly the "open floor" plan we had in mind.

The excitement begun the first day we stepped foot in our new home and lasted until we finally stepped foot in to our brand new kitchen - about two months later.  This blog post is the first of many I will use to catalog this unique time of our journey, we like to call "remember when". 

Remember when we had to live in the hotel for a week because we didn't have running water? Remember when we had to wash dishes in the bathtub? Remember when we had a refrigerator in the dining room? Remember when we had to hunt through 4 different rooms and 12 different boxes to find all the ingredients to a meal? Remember when we had a 2 ft. drop at the kitchen doorway so we had to put a baby gate up so we didn't lose any family members?  Remember when we had to heat up water in a crock pot to wash our faces and cook dinner in a toaster oven?

So, what happened?  It's all a blur, really.  My husband almost fell through the floor one minute, we discovered live termites the next, and before we knew it we were back in the hotel we had just checked out of and "Mr. Glenn" (a local handyman who became like kin during the long process) had our kitchen down to bare dirt.  In retrospect (which always seems to cloud my judgment) it's a little funny. Our daughter called it "indoor camping."  Personally, I think it would have been much more fun with s'mores. 

Although we never cooked a single meal in that wonderful, oversized, super functional kitchen, we made quite the gourmet eatery out of our dining room: 


It held the place (very crudely) of the kitchen for a great while. The refrigerator came with the house and although a glaring eyesore (stiff competition for the 40 year old carpet), it was quite a blessing to our little camp.  The rolling trashcan cart my husband built a few years before became a handy cook station. The ever-versatile TV trays acted as mobile countertops.  We fed a family of 5 with this quintessential trio of appliances: The Black & Decker Electric burner, the Crock Pot, and the George Forman Grill
  The lovely teal bed sheet covered the access door into what would eventually be the actual kitchen. The table top kept the bed sheet from blowing open and allowing saw dust and other debris to soil our luxurious dining/cooking/prep/storage area. 

It wasn't pretty. And it surely wasn't fun. But, our needs were met.  We survived the long frustrating days and refueled on God's promise to make us "fruitful in the land".  Staying focused became easiest at sun set. It meant another day behind us. It meant  we could walk away from the sawdust, the termite eaten floors, the pile of bills, the unpacked boxes, the leaky air mattress, the broken debris that was once our furniture, the visits to the Laundromat, the cold showers, the camp meals, and the chaos...and we could sit on our porch and watch this brilliant display of the Lord's work:

 ...and really, what else matters?

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