Before and Almost After: Our Kitchen

WARNING: This is going to be a long post with lots of photos!! I went through these before-after pics and couldn’t believe how much change has happened around here. I totally forgot!

So, this kitchen doesn’t look so bad, right? It’s got an island, 2 sinks, and stainless steel appliances and the  really cool brick.


So why did we need to remodel?
  • Florescent, recessed lighting above the kitchen sink.
  • No room for a dishwasher next to the main kitchen sink.
  • Disgusting cabinet shelves that looked like they were once in an automotive shop.
  • Mouse droppings in the insulation under those yucky cabinet shelves. Gross.
  • Mismatched cabinet doors, some missing.
  • Painted wallpaper behind sink. Yes. Lovely.
  • Ugly, yucky dishwasher in the middle of the island.
  • No lights above the island. Holes from a pot rack. Dangling wires.
  • Dark ceilings.
  • The fridge space was set up for a sub-zero fridge. A $5,000 fridge. As much as this kitchen girl would love that much space, that wasn’t happening. =)
  • Not enough counter space. I had a lot of counter space in my old kitchen. Here’s my old kitchen:
See the huge amount of counter space and storage? And this pic doesn’t even include the walk in pantry, the butler’s pantry and the double oven.
I used my old kitchen *a lot.*  I am a kitchen girl. I love hospitality. I love cooking. I homeschool in the kitchen. I spend the majority of my life in the kitchen, literally.
See why I needed more counter space??
Yeah, ’nuff said!
So, we needed to make the island bigger. Our boys helped us on one of the many, many, many, many trips we took to Home Depot or Lowes:
But before the building began, we needed to do some DEMO!
This is my stud bringing down the roof! The recessed lighting was going away!!
This was above the fridge. The cabinet had to come down. And then we needed to figure out how to make it look nice and finished….
Beautiful, right? =)
The underneath cabinets had to be shellacked to get the mouse pee smell out of there. Yum. We couldn’t figure out how to get the wood out of the brick area and get wood back in…So we worked with what we had. Shellack + shelving liner = much nicer cabinets now! I still only put things like recycling and grocery sacks in these cupboards. =)
Props to our friends who are raising hard-working, respectable young men! These were some of our helpers during the demo work! Look inside my kitchen cabinets: tools, tools, tools! There are no more tools in there now!
Notice the can-lights up above the guys! Our friend Dan, who I’d like to call the Can Light Man, has worked many hours at our home, adding lighting where there was none (I think the previous owners went to bed at sundown like real farmers =), and he did it all just because he likes us. I don’t have a picture of him that I can find, or I’d post it! We’re so thankful for all of the help we got on this major project!!!
This is our friend Lars, making space for a dishwasher! See all of my writing on the wall? It was wallpaper! It was coming down anyways! 
This is my little (but 1′ taller!) brother! We replaced all of the wood in these cabinets (this is where I was storing my cooking stuff! He was working on those details.
You can see some changes that were starting to happen here! This is my dad:
My mom’s hard work on a Saturday made a big impact on our kitchen!

And of course, the hired painters helped too!

Johnny (my brother’s brother-in-law) was trying to figure out the puzzle here. Word of advice: if you’re going to take off drawer faces to paint them (which you don’t need to do, apparently!), label them: A, B, C, etc., and label the drawers the same. This will save you MUCH headache!!!!
Back at the old house, the day before move-in, ladies from church blessed my socks off and packed up everything I still needed to pack. They even returned my library books and brought my frozen foods to the new house and helped me get them into the freezer! These kinds of friends are *PRICELESS!!!!*

Move in day, our home was still not finished, but we had to be out of the old house. Could’ve been a majorly stressful day, but again, we were just SO SO SO blessed by amazing friends! People who stuck out the day with us and made sure we had beds set up, etc. This is my friend Yanah, helping unpack my kitchen stuff in between nursing her newborn. What a friend!

And then, getting ready for the kitchen counter top. Yes. We lived here a couple of weeks with no counter top and no kitchen sink. I think they probably recognized us at Burgerville (we were the crazy people ordering 6 Tillamook cheeseburgers, no bun, dry, 2 salads and 4 packs of apples =).
It’s getting better! Look at the wood counter top!!! The drawers still weren’t done. The counter on the left & the sink weren’t in.
You wanna see what it looks like now????
So, some tricks: the black cabinets up above were cheapies off of Craigslist. They’re not real wood. They weren’t the unfinished ones from Home Depot that cost like $150 to $200 per cabinet. We got an entire kitchen of cabinets for $400–so we have extras for the barn! Yay!
The pendant lights were a splurge, from Pottery Barn. I loved. them. and had. to. have. them. =) I looked everywhere for something even remotely similar, but nothing was close.
The wall color is DeVine Oak.
The island color is DeVine Current….or Spray….I can’t remember right now, but I LOVE this color. I can check the can if anyone really wants to know!
The cream cabinets are DeVine Custard.
I got 19 gallons of DeVine paint off of Craigslist for $50. That was a steal! What I usually do is find the DeVine color I like & have it mixed in a regular Miller paint. I just LOVE the DeVine color lines!!!

This is another shot!
The *almost after* part here is that I have no cabinet doors or anything on the lower kitchen cabinet. I have curtains to hang there (very country), but they’re slightly too short and I can’t figure out which fabric I want to use to extend them…It’ll come to me, and then eventually I’ll get them hung up!!!

This cool brick stuff was already here. It’s cool until you hit your head on it–I did that today. 😉  We had the cabinets painted, and that’s pretty much all we did here. The*almost after* part here is the counter top. Our friend Allan is making a stainless steel counter that fits perfectly over the top of the cream stuff.

Karry (my man!) built this island!!! Didn’t he do an AWESOME job?!?!  You can see the old island–it has wainscoting on it. Can you see where they’re joined together? He used the plans from Anna White’s site for the Farmhouse Kitchen Island, and then changed it up a bit to make it bigger & fit more the style I wanted. I found lots of inspiration just by searching Google Images . WOW! I just searched it again and found a kitchen that looks similar to mine ! I didn’t see this one before. I must have made some very “hip” choices! =) I love that ice box. =)
My baskets were from Crate & Barrel. I really wish I would have found my 20% off coupon before going there! I could’ve saved a little! (Such is the nature of “just moving in,” right?)
The *almost after* here is the sink that isn’t cut in yet–in the corner, where it used to be. Our fridge water & ice doesn’t work and won’t until we hook this up–the lines are all connected somehow.
Also, you can’t see it, but on the other side of this island, we ripped out a pretty icky looking dishwasher & Karry retro-fitted a cabinet–there is still no door or drawer face on that cabinet. Soon. =)

This is what used to be my china hutch (in my formal dining room, previously). It was white with floral fabric behind it. I had my hubby lift it to the back deck so that I could spend several days working on it, to make it look like this! I used an electric sander and went around all of the corners. I put a red & white checked fabric inside of it instead of the floral stuff!

I just have to show this because I think it’s funny. Look to the left of this picture.You didn’t know that sticky fly tape is a decoration when you live way out in the sticks?? =)

Here’s a good shot of our stainless steel counter top that our friend Allan built for us!! The *almost after* here is that we have a piece of stainless that’s cut perfectly to fit on that drawer front right below the sink, to make it look like an apron sink. It will be cool when it happens….We just haven’t done it yet!
Do you see the built in drainboard? I LOVE it!!!

Do I miss my old kitchen??? Well, I miss the double oven. And the huge amounts of cabinet space and counter space.
We had TONS of GREAT memories there with very cool people……But look out the windows of that kitchen. What do you see? Houses. Fences and houses. That was our view.
This is my current view out my kitchen window. Our firepit, pigs, chickens, turkeys, ducks, geese, my overgrown garden, and this BEAUTIFUL land that God provided for us!!! I LOVE IT!!!! This is the most beautiful part of the kitchen, to me!!
So, to end this very long post, I’ll show one more before and after. And note that the “after” shot never could have been taken if it weren’t for the wall we ripped out–which you’ll see when I take photos of the living room! =)
Thanks for looking! Share your comments below!!


  • Kfreckle

    I LOVE it! I would love to know how you entertain so many people in your home while doing GAPS…I feel like my life is over because of having to eat differently. I don’t know how to have people over anymore and the house feels cold and lonely. 🙁

  • Vanessa

    Hi there — I discovered your blog via your carrot muffin recipe on pinterest 🙂 We’re having a snowy afternoon where I am and your blog is the perfect way to pass the time 🙂 I really love your stainless counters but was wondering if you would do stainless again after living with them for awhile? I hear a lot of complaints about scratches, dullness, marks, etc but I’d really like to use them in my kitchen 🙂

    Thanks so much 🙂

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