37 Weeks, Photo Collection: The Armstrong Kitchen Remodeling Disaster

Although the official closing ceremonies on the kichen remodel occurred a little over two weeks ago, it has taken Jon and me that long to realize that we have to go back to a normal way of living, to days not spent roaming the aisles at Home Depot and nights not spent scraping or crushing or painting or wiring, to mornings not spent scrubbing toxic insulation out of our pores. A couple nights ago when faced with more than ten consecutive minutes of downtime we suddenly realized I was pregnant, and that holy shit, we might want to buy some diapers or something. The kitchen remodel was a great distraction that way, and now that it’s over we’re sort of looking at each other like, do you know anything about babies?

Throughout my pregnancy I have been asked two questions consistently more than any other, the first one being Now that you’re no longer Mormon, how are you going to teach your kids the difference between right and wrong? My response to this one if I don’t first walk away or spit in the person’s face (which, frankly, didn’t go over well with Granny), is, I don’t know, I think a few BILLION people in this world have done it before, it’s not like I’ll be breaking new ground. The second question is You have a dishwasher to sterilize bottles, don’t you? Which I’ve taken not as a question but more of a serious warning, that if I don’t have a dishwasher I might kill my baby with an unsterilized bottle and spend the rest of eternity in fiery hell with other evil mothers who never owned dishwashers.

When we bought this house last April we knew that we would one day have to remodel the kitchen. All of the appliances were over 20 years old and the room wasn’t even wired for a dishwasher or disposal. When a large enough number of other parents had successfully convinced us that the eternal and spiritual consequences of not owning a dishwasher far outweighed the fact that our 32 inch tall countertops prohibited us from owning one, we went out and bought one anyway thinking that we would just CUT A HOLE in the countertops and shove the dishwasher up against the wall.

That plan was instantly proved utterly stupid and we were faced with a decision between taking back the dishwasher, the key to the survival of our baby, or just going ahead already and taking apart the whole kitchen. All I can say is, our first born child will be drinking from sterilized bottles for the rest of her life and, by God, she will be thankful for it.

The remodel officially began on November 28 and ended December 23 when we put a second coat of sealer on the tiled backsplash. That’s less than four weeks which for non-pregnant, mentally sound people would be unusually quick. For the pregnant and mentally unstable, it was a horrifying ride from the 10th through the 13th circle of hell, beginning with The Armstrong Wood Floor Prepping Disaster (10th circle), The Armstrong Electrical Re-Wiring Fiasco (11th circle), The Wanting to Strangle Hired Contractors Near Massacre (12th circle), and The Whose Idea Was It To Tile The Backsplash Ourselves Catastrophe (13th circle).

Now that it’s over I have earned every right to say that it was totally worth it and you are a complete idiot if you try anything half as irrational. The end result is An Armstrong Original, a beautiful fusion of modern and mission styles, a true collaboration of my husband’s and my own design sense. We are very proud of our new kitchen and have been known not only to talk about it to strangers in line at the grocery store but also to post about it at length on our personal websites. Aren’t you glad it’s finally over?

Launch The Armstrong Kitchen Remodeling Disaster.