Small Small Kitchen update

msjay2uMay 13, 2013

Hey guys, A while ago I had started on my kitchen that I thought would take a month MAX. LOL stupid has taken over a year. I have gotten several messages asking for updates. Some people have been following my blog and some lost the link when I switched doman names.
Here is the update!!
This was going to be a Moroccan kitchen but it is the beginning of my eclectic Moroccan, Indian and country various stages of progress... I still have to put the Moroccan lanterns up and the flip up table...and some curtains in the bay window...

I have a lot to do yet but I figured I would give you an update. If you want to see or refresh your memory on the kitchen click the kitchen tag on my blog and you can read all about it.

That little shelf with the door was actually the window that I took out of the kitchen on the other side. I made this shelf between the studs and as you see they are not very deep. Just the right depth for a cup. I put the window on as a door. I plan to one day hang some pretty awesome cups in here....soon as I design them

That piece of carved rosewood on top came from a rosewood room divider that I have repurposed. I have pieces of it all over the house to tie everything in together. That curtain rod to hold my baskets is the less than $10 curtain rod.

The wall you see with the picture frame is the electrical access wall. At one time I had a fuse box there but the electricity was converted and the box moved to the basement.The panel is behind the photo. Instead of putting several access boxes for each junction box I put one piece of plywood. Also I got that photo made at Walmart. Funny how they won't let you copy copywritten photos in a frame but put a bunch of them together and stick one of your self in there and they don't have a problem. LOL. There is a reason why they don't call that store smart-mart.

The clock came from my neighbor Louise. I can not count how many times I fussed her out for climbing a ladder to change the time for daylight savings. YOU JUST DON"T DO THAT when you have a neighbor who will do it for you! The sun goddess came from the Dollar store and so did the recipe for an amazing woman. Leaning on the floor is the table. I am going to put a bar-top gloss coat on it and it will go on the wall there to hide that bottom access panel. The pollen is too thick to work on the table outside ...although I can probably do it in the basement and let it dry for however long it takes...It will store flat on the wall and when the kids come over you can flip it up to be a table. Neat huh? I got that idea off Gardenweb from Momma Goose

This is my picture window or bay window. I removed two widows and replaced them with this one. This widow is the reason I renovated my whole house. It was the snowball effect. I purchased a pot rack years ago and it did not fit in the kitchen. I tried to sell it dirt cheap but no one wanted it. I refused to give my brand new Cuisinart rack to Goodwill so I stored it for about 4 years. Now I am able to hang it. whoooo whoooo.

I have baskets on the less than $10 rod. I still have my handmade door handles on these doors. I plan to repaint them though. Got something similar yet totally different in mind.

Here is a close up as to what is going on in that window.

This wall was a disaster. First off when I ordered the cabinets I didn't order enough so I made a microwave shelf to go in the blank because I could not see me forking over another penny for a cabinet. As it was the guy marked them down, gave me credit for a ding here and there, and then gave me a Vets discount. I was literally counting pennies to pay him LOL. I could hug him for all the advice and support he game me!! Shout out to Randy at Bargain Warehouse!!

Now look under the microwave...what do you see?

look closer...see it yet?


I spent a lot of time repairing the chinking in these logs and painting them so they could look decent yet no one even notices them. tsk. tsk. tsk.

Okay so there is a small hallway between the kitchen and the mudroom. I used it to make my plate cabinet using the screen door I took off the house and more between the studs shelves. On the other side of that short hallway is my basement where I painted a Hamsa. A Hamsa is my protection against evil behind ppl who may come in my house stabbing me in the back while they are smiling in my face and offering me rat poison cookies. LOL Not that I have anyone like that visiting me...its just in case...

and yes I painted that!

And now we get to the wall where the window was removed! So what you are seeing here is a wall I had a guy cover with cement to look like a gray brick wall. It is sealed so it can be cleaned of grease. I have my stove now properly vented to the outside of the house, My rosewood trim on the rangehood and knick knack paddy whacks all over

TO recap...before and afters side by side:

The corner where I took that useless cabinet down. There was no way anything can fit in that corner cabinet this is also where I removed the widow on the left. I put a bakers rack with all kinds of kitchen utensils on it, installed shelf on the wall for my spices and a wall shelf for steak sauce, olive oil and crap like that

And now folks here are the before and afters

This photo shows three transitions. The kitchen started off beige, then blue then yellow then I took out the window added a stone wall, moved the stove and fridge and painted it tan. This group of photos is of the same wall

I had to move the stove to the other side of the kitchen so I can have ventilation

Since I removed a window I changed the double windows to a garden window. LOVING IT. Notice the screen door in the hallway...talking about up-cycling's my plate closet

I am still not finished

Here is a link that might be useful: My Blog: A City Girls Country Dream

This post was edited by msjay2u on Mon, May 13, 13 at 19:16

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Elraes Miller

I enjoy your blog, especially the humor along with so much work done on your own. Keep updating it, sometimes I don't respond to all. But enjoy your life adventures. Hope others head on over there for upbeat moments.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2013 at 8:52AM
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Thank you!! It's been over a year in work and it has been a labor of love. I got a lot of ideas from garden webbers. The last thing to do is my flip up table. Hopefully this weekend. The grands keep asking me when I am going to finish it. Now they ask can they help to finish it Lol

    Bookmark   May 29, 2013 at 1:44PM
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Wow, what a difference! Is the U shape more functional? I really like your garden window. I remember you had quite a few obstacles to overcome for this remodel.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2013 at 4:52PM
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Has it already been a YEAR? Wow!

Congratulations on your new kitchen! It is so much more functional than before. I love your window! You must be so happy to be almost done!

Your creativity is fabulous. The screen door plate closet is particularly clever!

    Bookmark   May 30, 2013 at 11:36PM
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I think it looks awesome and so much more functional!

how do you like working in it? It's one of those neat 1 of a kind, owner personality embedded redos!

you had so much to work around and deal with in there!

can't wait to see the flip up / down table.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2013 at 1:18AM
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marti8a-the kitchen is much more functional for me. I finally have a true triangle layout and it feels so much safer to finally have a vent hood! Plus where the stove was at originally people kept accidentally hit the gas knobs and I was always smelling gas in the house. Now I do not have that problem having the stove out of the traffic path. My step dads wheel chair navigates in now without all the drama we had before navigating the kitchen. Having taken out that fuse box feels like I have arrived LOL. Someone warned me how hard it is to clean the window having to crawl into it to clean it. I am at the point now where it has to be cleaned and I am dreading it. I wish there was a way to combat this as I love love love the window
shelayne- I knooooow right? Time has really flown by!! I thought the screen door on the shelves was an original idea but I found out that its not and then later I was going through my pins on pinterest and saw where I pinned someones pantry with a screen door a couple of years ago LOL I forgot. I have to go through my pins every once in a while
desetrsteph- yes it really is so much more functional and I love working in it. I find that I still do not have enough cabinets though. God if I my kitchen extended out 4 more feet it would make such a difference!!. The cabinets I put in had to be narrow and deep and as warned kind of hard to use. I had no choice though.. and really I have more than I started with. I am thinking I might need to do pull outs on the cabinets for ease of access and organization.
I am hoping the kitchen is not so one of a kind that if I decide to sell it will be a hindrance!! But I can't worry about that now. I decided to love it vs list it and loving it means making it my own!
I still have not gotten to the flip up table yet. I painted it and I want to put a pour on coat but they say that stuff has problems with bubbles. I think that is what is holding me back. I am scared of the bubbles LOL. I am so close to finishing....

    Bookmark   June 3, 2013 at 12:56AM
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creative and well thought out. you have loads of useful space now! I wanted to comment on cleaning the deep window over the sink. You can get squeegees with extendable handles. The ones I like have a sponge on one side and the squeegee on the other, like the ones you see at gas stations for cleaning wind shields. Take a microfiber cloth and put it over the head of the squeegee, securing it with a rubber band or elastic of some sort, and use that to scrub everything down. a tiny bit of dish detergent in the hottest water possible works well, as does plain old glass cleaner. Then use new clean microfiber cloths to dry and polish. If the shelf in the middle is removable it will make it much easier and you can get all but the tiniest details by manipulating the rag/squeegee into the corners and edges. It may take some practice, but you will get good at it in no time. I have been a cleaning lady by trade for the past 15 years and it has worked well for me unless there is lots of heavy nicotine or grease. Then using something like magic eraser first helps a lot. best wishes

    Bookmark   June 7, 2013 at 8:00AM
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Wow you hit it on the head. I purchases a long long handle with a microfiber cloth pad on the's for truck drivers to reach their windows. I got it from the dollar store believe it or not. I was wondering how to dry the windows and for some reason a squeegee never crossed my mind. Thank you. I think I will blog about that this weekend! It is time to clean those bad boys ....thanks again. Do you use magic eraser for a lot of things? I would love to do a story on cleaning tips from an expert. I don't know why they can clean my hour in a few hours and the same job will take me days. I used to have my house cleaned and all she wanted was a magic eraser a bottle of Clorox clean up, a duster and dish liquid plus a bucket ,a mop and the vacuum. If you are interested in helping me with a story please let me know

    Bookmark   June 7, 2013 at 12:03PM
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now that's flattering! email me and i'll try to help. thanks!

    Bookmark   June 7, 2013 at 1:11PM
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I love all the pics! Hanging appliances under the counter are great space savers! I have a hanging microwave, can opener and coffee maker. Try to keep counters as clear as possible. I have a toaster and toaster oven out all the time. Got rid of my blender-DD "stole" it for her apartment. (I just *like* the way my toaster makes toast and English muffins)

    Bookmark   June 16, 2013 at 8:43AM
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"A while ago I had started on my kitchen that I thought would take a month MAX. LOL stupid has taken over a year. "

it's taken me several yrs to move - and I'm still not all moved - lol!

    Bookmark   June 16, 2013 at 3:36PM
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Hi Miss Jay! I did check out your blog. You have a nice chatty style that is easy to read. I, too, prefer to do my shopping online. I like how your kitchen turned out, with all the cubby holes and little shelves for oils and spices and such. It is homey and comfortable. One question, do you have ventilation with the side windows in the garden window? It looks like you might. With the range hood fan on and those windows open, It could get a bit of a breezy flow going during cooler times. Otherwise, I would worry that your little kitchen would get stuffy.

I have admired your screen door plate rack since the first time I saw it. It is so pretty, so practical, and such an unexpected surprise when you see it there at the end of the hall. Your painting skills are to be admired, as well, shown by your three little monkeys on the table top and the Hamsa. Your home is alive with the warmth of your personality and your skills. Congratulations!

    Bookmark   June 16, 2013 at 6:18PM
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Thank you so very much! I have enjoyed the kitchen and yes the side windows do open but I would have to keep a ladder in the kitchen to reach the crank to open them. LOL the window is nice but as someone told me when I was in the planning stages the access to it is impractical. I wouldn't trade it for the world though.
Thank you on the plate pantry. I forget that I actually have plates in there sometimes and I stand in the kitchen asking myself if I even have plates LOL
I still have NOT finished the table top. Shame one me LOL

I am glad you enjoyed it though. I was losing hope that I could actually get a functional kitchen out of such a small space. I think it is 9x9 or something very close to that and it is broken up by doorways and windows. It was a real challenge.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2013 at 6:24PM
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Imhappy&Iknowit IOWA zone 6b

Somewhere I saw a reference to something you made in the basement to ward off evil spirits but now I can't find it! Can you post a picture here or is there one on your blog somewhere? I need one of those!

    Bookmark   June 23, 2013 at 10:06PM
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What you are referring to is the Hamsa which is shown in the photo of my basement door above and looks like a hand with designs in it. A Hamsa represents blessings, power, and strength and is said to protect against the “evil eye”…a certain “look” that can cause bad luck for the person to whom it is directed (but not always intentionally). Envy can be a source of the evil eye. Jealousy can be a source of evil eye. Hate and discontent can also be a source. If you google Hamsa you will find many different photos and explanations..

Here is a link that might be useful: What wikipedia says about a Hamsa

    Bookmark   June 24, 2013 at 8:01AM
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I love it when a person with real grit will tackle a boring kitchen and make it their own which is what you did and did well. You should pat yourself on the back. I love a kitchen that looks like people really cook and enjoy, so many are for just looking. You're a one of a kind person and that's hard to come by. Love that you embrace all that appeals to you and please yourself. Those were some impressive moves you made with the stove etc. Did you do it alone? Kudos to you.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2013 at 11:23AM
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Imhappy&Iknowit IOWA zone 6b

Thanks. Something else to add to my To Do List. I have to live forever.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2013 at 12:56PM
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Wow yayagal, thanks for that. I did the demo on the kitchen, restored the log wall made the recessed shelves the shelf by the vent hood, the vent hood, and the microwave shelf and designed the rest. I do love my kitchen..but I still wish it was bigger. @lov_mkitchen our work is NEVER done

    Bookmark   July 14, 2013 at 9:25AM
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