Is there a room in your home that speaks to you? You know, one that when you enter... it feels warm, cozy, and is full of things you cherish. Perhaps a room that you have worked the hardest to decorate, furnish, and arrange. I do. It is our kitchen. Those that know me would probably laugh to hear this because in my circle of friends everyone knows my husband is the chef in the family. He has been making culinary delights for our entire 34 year marriage. I bake...but try to do so sparingly because what I bake, we eventually wear.
This house is new to us (eight years now). We moved here when our children were in college. When we entered to look at the house, the kitchen was dark, dingy, and outdated by thirty years. We did not have enough money to do a "makeover" that one might see on HGTV. Those kitchens always cost thirty to fifty thousand dollars and I don't know about you but we never have that kind of spare change in our pockets.
We bought the house for the outside not the inside. The house sits on a plateau above a tidal river. It has 4+ acres of hundred year old hardwood trees and 750 feet of frontage.
Once we moved in, we knew the kitchen was going to need our attention and love. We would have to do most of the work ourselves. There were two things going for the kitchen, good size and a ten foot bay window looking out at that lovely river and all those hardwood trees. Much to our delight we are entertained by birds and mammals daily. They have no idea we have a window into their world.
In eight years we have tiled the floor with help from friends, replaced all the appliances, painted the dark cupboards white (they were made much sturdier 30 years ago and we can't afford the replace and get the same quality), added granite counter tops, put up a tile back splash, removed the old wall paper and painted, replaced lighting, hinges and hardware. We have added an old oak table and Windsor chairs which sit right in front of that big window. A small butcher block island sits in the middle awaiting my husband's artful hands as he conjures up inventive recipes to delight our pallets. My favorite additions...an early 1900's Hoosier which houses my baking equipment and a rocking chair in the corner with a river view (which is where I am rocking while I write this piece).
My sister-in-law came to visit one day not long ago and said, "This kitchen reminds me of a grandmother." That is the best compliment I could have ever had. The whole time we renovated this kitchen I thought about my grandmother and my husband's grandmother. I remembered about how much I loved spending time with each of them in their respective kitchens. That is exactly what I wanted to create...a room that hugs you...that says come in and sit down for a while...you are welcome here. We have worked on all the other rooms of the house too but when we have company, they almost always prefer to sit in the kitchen which envelops them with warmth, coziness, and a beautiful view.
|Thank you Grammy Libby and Grammy Brown|