I Traded A Cool Urban Lifestyle For Really Ugly Cabinets

You grow up, move to the 'burbs, and start dreaming about Viking appliances
Publish date:
August 23, 2011

Oh you people! You in your bohemian 600 square foot apartments with your galley kitchens and your easy access to Thai and Indian takeaways and your cool rock and roll lifestyles where your biggest worries are what Marc Jacobs skirt to wear tonight and whether or not you want to blow your rent on a pair of Miu Miu court heels. I was YOU once. I lived in a cute brownstone in a lively urban city with a hole in my living room floor, Nick Cave posters in my kitchen and a community laundry room where I once walked in on a neighborhood "businesswoman" servicing one of her "clients." On her knees, if you catch my drift.

But those days are over. I'm old (er) now, I gots' me a pile of kids, a mess o' animals and and a 1979 colonial in a 'hood with ridic property taxes in an excellent school district.

Welcome to suburbia, bitches.

I'm jealous of you people. But we don't have time to get into that now. I'll dry my bitter tears and pull up my big girl panties and deal with the biggest issue that I have to contend with at present. Which is the fact I have cabinets with glass fronts that have horsies on them. Not adorable Kawaii My Little Pony horses. I did not have come in and design my home. I mean, horsies. As in "Hey! It's 1979 and we live in Kentuckyyyy and people in Kentuckyyyyy looooove horses so let's put in kitchen cabinets with horses on them!" If this were 1979 my kitchen would be really nice.

But it's like, 90 years later. Or close.

This is proof that I love and trust you readers. I'm showing you my kitchen.

Now, I know, I know. I'm lucky to even have a kitchen. There are so many people in the world who are homeless and affected by natural disasters and blah blah blah. I know it's shallow for me to bitch about my kitchen that has cupboards full of food and a roof over it. I count my blessings every day, I donate money to the Red Cross, I realize that hating my kitchen is sort of laughable in the grand scheme of things.

But I really hate my kitchen.

The only updating I have done to my kitchen is putting in new cabinet pulls (as you can see in the photo of when we first moved in, they were a lovely gold plastic) and installing a new light fixture. We are now at the point where we will have a big 'ol jar with a sign on it that reads "Kitchen $$$$$" filled with loose change. Because we are going to redo our kitchen.

I'm having a lot of fun with my man planning out our kitchen redo. Other than crying over the fact I will never have money to do anything ever again because we are saving to remodel our kitchen. This is an expensive prospect, people. I can kiss going on vacation, eating out, buying shoes goodbye. Other than the kid's savings accounts everything else goes into the kitchen kitty. We have walls to remove. Floors to install. Appliances to buy. Plumbing to reroute. Gas lines to be installed. Pantries to build.

We are just in the initial planning stages so I spend a lot of free time drooling over kitchen pornography. I dream about reclaimed barn wood floors and new windows and drop-in sinks. I will have a double oven, a closet for mops and vacuums, an industrial island for baking and a gas cooktop.

I want the entire kitchen to feel like my kitchen table does.

This is the only space in the kitchen that feels like ME. This is where I breakfast with the kids and listen to them talk about whether baby ants have to go to school too. This is where my husband and I open a bottle of wine when the house is dark and quiet and talk about our days. This is where I write this now, a cup of coffee getting cold on the table and a cat asleep on the chair next to me.

The Internet told me a kitchen remodel is a good investment, and should we ever sell our house we can expect a 75c-80c return on every dollar we spend. But we don't plan on moving. My husband loves his job, we love our neighborhood, and we are lazy. We will build this kitchen for us, keeping future homeowners in mind but keeping the needs of our family first.

Have you ever remodeled a room in your house? Do you have ugly cabinets that make you sad when you take the Cheerios out? Do you spend hours on "pinning" dream rooms like I do? I love Pinterest for collecting ideas but then I always get distracted by something amazingly cool I see and saving that, too. Should I add $75,000 to remodel costs so I can have a stainless steel slide in my house?

Do you swoon over Elle Decor and cut photos out of design magazines or are you still sleeping off a hangover, glitter eyeshadow smearing your eyes and a half-eaten box of noodles coagulating on your nightstand? Never mind that last part, just tell me about your sink.