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DIYing a small kitchen from the subfloor up to the sky


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I know I should start with photos of the kitchen but I can not find the "before " I promise I will post them when I do but the hole I am living with will be more profound with some before photos LOL…oh well this is the best I have for now ….and the best I have is what I was so excited and anxious about ..it is my brand new concrete countertops! wow they are done and I am so grateful and happy with the results my husband and his partner did a fantastic job! … as of now Both of the concrete countertops have been poured…. I could scream with joy! ..for a grand total of  $200 I now have custom concrete countertops that anyone would be very proud of !  they look just  beautiful and will out live me for sure :) very happy with this ..once they are cured and cleaned up and installed  they will be a nice  slate gray

here is the sink side the other side is the same but the cooktop will go in instead of the sink 

/22890055921_97245fc7c3.jpgpenny tiles in progress with a nickel boarder 

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why am I always at the bottom and why is everything so high? 

why must there be so little me and so much sky?


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Very cool. Thanks for starting this forum; I'm looking forward to seeing more.


Maybe I shouldn't have rolled up and cashed in all of the pennies in our penny jar.


I like your dog. It looks like he has one white ear and one black ear. BTW, I tried looking at a larger version of the picture but was told it was a private Flickr account.


How's the oven decision/search going?

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"There is no sincerer love than the love of food."  -George Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman, Act 1


Gene Weingarten, writing in the Washington Post about online news stories and the accompanying readers' comments: "I basically like 'comments,' though they can seem a little jarring: spit-flecked rants that are appended to a product that at least tries for a measure of objectivity and dignity. It's as though when you order a sirloin steak, it comes with a side of maggots."

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Very cool indeed! I think the countertops are going to look wonderful, and I'm impressed by your ingenuity on ways to save money! How will your penny/nickel tiles be sealed? Are you going to encase them in acrylic?

Yes, do please keep posting on this topic!

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Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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hummingbirdkiss,  I admire your fearlessness in taking on such a big project and your creativity in making it so personal.  The countertops look beautiful and I love, love the real coin backsplash.

Your enthusiasm is contagious and makes me look forward to more posts please do continue to share when you have time.

Thank you so much for posting!

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Of course, the first I had to do was to go back and look at your dog.  (It's a dog person thing...as all dog persons know.) 

You and your gang are doing one incredible job and I am so impressed with your hard work and ingenuity.  :wub:

We do have some points in common in our kitchen living:  galley kitchen (would never have another kind), diy (Ed built the entire thing from what was an apiary), done on the cheap/inexpensive, big fridge in the garage...however big one in the kitchen too.  But then DH has remodeled/renovated the ENTIRE house.  Don't ask.

I have some extras which you might consider at some point:  very shallow cupboard built into the wall interior, perfect for spices.  A wood floor...I'd die before I ever had anything else in my kitchen again.  But then we have a 'Century' farmhouse and all the floors are original and/or new pine planking.  Distressed the natural way...large dogs and careless humans.   White ceiling, cupboards, counter and walls with colorful accents.  Huge windows.  Lots of light.  I am obsessed with light...always have been.

Again, well done so far and all best in the rest. 

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learn, learn, learn...


Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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I agree! Very cool!

I love the penny tile idea.  :smile:

Edited by DiggingDogFarm (log)
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~Martin :)

I just don't want to look back and think "I could have eaten that."

Unsupervised, rebellious, radical agrarian experimenter, minimalist penny-pincher, and adventurous cook. Crotchety, cantankerous, terse curmudgeon, non-conformist, and contrarian who questions everything!

The best thing about a vegetable garden is all the meat you can hunt and trap out of it!


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Check out "Title 18, Chapter 17 of the U.S. Code"


dcarch :-)



...anyone who “alters, defaces, mutilates, impairs, diminishes, falsifies, scales, or lightens” coins can face fines or prison time.


Nope, don't see any of those. She's safe. :laugh:  In fact, if money gets really, really, really tight, she can just crack open those tiles.

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"There is no sincerer love than the love of food."  -George Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman, Act 1


Gene Weingarten, writing in the Washington Post about online news stories and the accompanying readers' comments: "I basically like 'comments,' though they can seem a little jarring: spit-flecked rants that are appended to a product that at least tries for a measure of objectivity and dignity. It's as though when you order a sirloin steak, it comes with a side of maggots."

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Actually, it is very patriotic to destroy money.


Every dollar you destroy, the government is one dollar richer.


For those of you who are interested in making penny tiles. Google penny tile template.



Edited by dcarch (log)
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thanks you guys sorry for the delay in getting back but the time spent doing all this ..well it takes time


the penny tiles are legal you guys are so funny and yup I can crack open the tiles anytime and reclaim them because they are not at all damaged by the process ..lets just say I am holding them on the wall until needed LOL and I have lot's of Canadian pennies in there and other coins that look like pennies and some that don't for added interest I threw some giant Chinese coins in a few tiles …


I am using a heavy duty glue glueing them to mats the templates are a waste pennies are all the same size so they sit on top of each other you do not need an extra thing .. and then putting them up like regular tiles because there is no way I would attempt a wall epoxy..how pretty it would be though ..oy but scary as nice as that would look I can barely seal a table with out dust and crap flying on it ..I have all these animals and live on a dirt road ….old school just going to put them up with mortar and grout them in then seal them as usual . I bought the mats but will buy no more the rest of the pennies i will just mortar them up around the tiles so i do not have to cut them 



Alex the oven is going to be the Bosch convection actually i think you posted about it  thank yo..u…we have opted out of what we really wanted and are donating money to sponsor a Syrian family so we are cutting back on the budget we never had LOLOL .." we are pulling money out of our asses " is what my husband calls this project 


thanks for the interest, comments,  complements it is slow going but as soon as i finish stripping and priming the skeleton (today I am going to take the hardware off and try my new sprayer inside the cabinets…wish me luck LOLOL every project needs a new tool and I am the toolbox queen I got me some good tools :) and they are MINE! anyone touches them …well I will not post what will happen because no one will ..LOL…i will post more 


my husband and I are bit different in our DIY styles ..he works a mess flings tools and never cleans his areas …land et's just say I do none of that. 


so when we do DIY I patiently wait for him to go in with his OWN tools do his work and then bitch at him to pick his shit up for three days..when he does and the areas is spotless .(.37 years this month we have been together )  I take my tools and go in and do my work behind him ..he does all the electrical ..plumbing and structural things I to all the painting tile work and small structural things like hemming the cabinet doors and if I mess them up he can fix them so we do work well together if we don't work together. 



there is also a solar tube installed not sure if I mentioned that but wow did it bring me some light even on the gray days i rarely turn the light on in what once was very dark  hole ..how a room can actually "suck light" is beyond me… but my house has lots of windows is well lit but somehow and someway the way the little kitchen located? it literally sucks light ..if that makes sense so lots of things are "light" oriented except the counters they are going to be dark and that makes me nervous a bit but wow they do look good ..they are buffing a little each day both of the guys between their regular work it is going to take a LOT of buffing before they can be installed 


yeah that dog is a cutie pie but a spoiled brat and  betrayer he will move in with anyone given the chance if they have better food and a softer sofa ….shameless hussy boy! ..we got a call from a neighbor one day he snuck out and walked two blocks into someones open house drank and ate out of their dogs bowls then hauled his but onto their sofa when they called us to come he did not want to leave? oy silly beast 


I believe I answered any questions asked if not I will reread this again when I have a bit more coffee and my eyes focus


OH speaking of coffee! I am so excited  have a roaster and it is an albatross but in cleaning the basement I found an 1950s typing table that works perfectly for a mobile stand for the roaster ..so very excited ..fun shopping the basement! also found a qual egg pan and my pancake ball pan (do not ask me to spell that pancakes name LOL ) I am excited It was my sons favorite breakfast it will be fun to make them for my grand's now ) 


ok do I give up the cookbooks  now? ..YES!!!!! exempt for the heirlooms …they are all going to be gifted and donated 

digital is the way for me now ..still love to read them and just finished the Suffrage cookbook but then they go out the door like a novel wound not keeping cookbook or buying them if I can help it . wow I could only post that hear and people would understand how HUGE that was for me to do and say…

Edited by hummingbirdkiss (log)
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why am I always at the bottom and why is everything so high? 

why must there be so little me and so much sky?


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I forgot to add I have my flicker act to public so you should be able to see the whole album I only use it to post here and on another board? I wonder what is wrong ? anyone know? you should be able to just go look at the photos all of them I thought? 


I hate I can not edit …my mind doesnt work that fast and I edit too much and talk to much through my fingers 


here is the typing table how cool is this and it fits right into the pantry YAY! paint and tile the top with some left over tiles from another project and a coffee roasting cart it will be 


I love up cycling ..have done it all my life and glad it is something that interests folks 


would like to show the bender that is a very cool tool I will bend some hooks and post it when I do them next 




you can make handles nobs and hooks out of silverware or anything flat that bends 





/22597983778_e20efe7606.jpgtfits perfectly YAY! problem solved I am tired of moving this roaster around 



Edited by hummingbirdkiss (log)
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why am I always at the bottom and why is everything so high? 

why must there be so little me and so much sky?


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Darienne thanks for the help I am fixing it and will post the link to the entire album once i am sure 



ok so here is the reason why (except waiting for my husband to clean his messes) …DIYs are not for the folks who can not stand to divert here and there ..see who the hell would put particle board under and sink? whomever did this sink to begin with ..OYYYYY I had it covered with crap for so long and kept all my cleaning stuff under hear so pardon the filth but …well you are looking under my sink during a full on remodel ….so you get what you see LOL ! 


fortunately this is the only board at the bottom of the cabinets i have to replace other than that they are super sound and I am going to prime and paint them 

I am thinking of tiling the board under the sink as well? why not I have tiles ? and time? but do I have the energy? SURE I DO!!!!  MIND OVER MATTER!!!!

we bailed on the day and went out for soup so I think that showing food is important as well since nourishment makes strong workers and honestly I have eaten like crap lately and need more food in bowls .perfer soup form since the weather turned butt ass cold out! 

first food pic 


so under the sink tiles it is 




this could have been so much worse underneath and believe it or not this is a HUGE relief I have pulled some pretty disgusting things from under things in this house as we have progressed

ok the flooring isn't that that awful stuff it rips and ..argh I can not wait for the satisfaction of pulling that shit up ..I ADORE demolition it is the best part of doing this 


getting ready to cut the holes in the walls for windows to the living room ..I am cutting them out and husband will come in and do the framing and make it look good 



short history of our house?  ..we inherited it from our landlord ..we were going to buy a condo and move to Seattle proper when I retired but the plans changed when she died and we were in her will 


so long story short ..we are here the house was started in 3500sf of brick home ..old school rambler built on bluff with views out every window…daylight basement with views out the side that is not built into the bluff..we are bult into a solid dry bluff and have a super dry basement ..that was a shock to both my husband and I coming from places that had dehumidifiers and sump pumps in basements LOL …it was started in 1960 by a shop teach of a High school and he had a little ADD I am thinking because wow …frankly ..it was never finished at all …..lots of starts and not finishes …. the bones are solid the electric and plumbing to die for …outlasts everywhere !!! the floors are solid oak upstairs and some flagstone in the entry ..I am torn about but will leave because my landlord "Mary Kay " adored them and I adored her ….the house had NO central heating at all so we had to do that with a contractor that and the roof where the only things we had to "hire out" for 

we have two beautiful gas fireplaces that were here when we came but never use them because they cost a fortune to run! 

we built 3 bathrooms literally from the subfloor to the ceiling and I myself proudly have built two sunning showers (little brag inserted the tiles are so damn tight in my bathrooms you can hose them down

have remodeled four bedrooms and built myself a yoga room it is a lovely home and neighborhood and I am so grateful !!! what a gift huh? one we had to work our asses off but it is just so nice living here i will never move 

(eta THIS huge to me house was hers ours we rented was a cute cottage in a lovely little town nearby and she actually left that two our kids..no we did not have any idea this would happen and were in literal shock for six months because "who does this" ..Mary Kay did!) 

so the last thing we needed to do was the kitchen (best for last right? ) 


and so it goes here we are and here I share 


I am gong to get off my ass now and go cut that board tile it and get the kitchen primed today ..yes I am that is the plan …ok one more cup of coffee 


not eating for me is not good an I am the only cook in the house do not like fast food and am seriously having problems with eating now …help???? 


the weather has turned and I am trying to cook outside but yuk :( the instant pot is fine but you know what? all my food is spread in bins so are all my cookings supplies because now the kitchen is officially out of service for a while I have to cook in pots around the house or whatever ..argh I am just hungry and tired ..

I put a really nice mixed grain in the Instant pot that  I bought at Hmart 

I can eat that and an egg ..often… the next few days but when you are exhausted have no kitchen and gross all day what do you eat? my husband is grouchy too he is used to my cooking and a seriously spoiled man! 

Edited by hummingbirdkiss (log)
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why am I always at the bottom and why is everything so high? 

why must there be so little me and so much sky?


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Grab a rotisserie chicken from the nearest grocery store and throw some taters in the IP.  Chicken, mashed taters, veg of some kind. BOOM fast dinner :)


Leftover chicken, shred it and make enchiladas or chicken soup (in the IP).


You know I live in the boonies, so I can't hop to the store to get a chicken all the time, but when I'm in the big city I grab one and they are always good.  

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