I had the first line of this blog post all written in my head. I was going to say, “I’m forty-four years old and I finally have a kitchen I love!” But, every time I typed out those words I deleted them again. And it’s not because I hate declaring that I’m forty-four years old!
It’s because, even though I’m so excited to be showing you my new counters and backsplash today, I keep thinking back to the first time I saw my kitchen. It was 2008 and we were touring the house with our realtor and I stepped into the kitchen and couldn’t believe my eyes. There was so much space! Yes, the cabinets were dark wood and yes the granite wasn’t what I would have chosen but, with a baby on my hip and a 5 year old running around, it looked like a dream to me.
There was a lot to love about my kitchen when it looked like this. So, I’m not going to tell you that it’s only ‘now’ that I love it. Now that we’ve painted the cabinets and put in new floors and updated the counters and the backsplash and the sink and the fixtures and the window treatments.
Instead, I’m going to tell you that I think there is something really wonderful about living with and appreciating what you have until you can get what you want without going into debt. Even if it takes a long time.
This is how the kitchen looked after we moved here in 2008.
After the cabinets were painted
And FINALLY, twelve years later, it’s all done! And yes, I do love it.
We decided to go with honed quartzite for our countertops. It’s a natural stone and has a similar look to marble with the durability of granite. We ended up going with the honed finish since it has more of a matte look to it. After years of granite, I was ready for something with a bit less shine. This particular pattern is called ‘Taj Mahal’ and it looks SO different once its honed from how it looks in its original state.
Desk area when we first moved in
After cabinets were painted
Desk area with new backsplash
Appliance garage on counters when we first moved in
After cabinets were painted
And now! We had the appliance garage removed to free up more counter space and it just makes this whole area so much more open.
For the backsplash, we decided to go with a subway tile in varying shades of white. If you look closely, there are three slightly different colors here and we love the subtle effect it creates while also tying in the cabinet color to the colors in the quartzite.
I think…no…I know…that my most favorite part of this project is my new sink!!
We went with a basin style, undermount sink and I’ve never been so happy to do dishes.
My husband said that his favorite thing about the new sink is that it’s so deep that you can’t see the dishes that get piled up in there. 😉
Every time I come downstairs in the morning and head into the kitchen to get my coffee, I’m startled by how bright this room is now.
But, I’ll tell you something. The coffee tastes the same as it did when we first moved in and the kitchen had dark cabinets and 1992 granite tile counters.
It tastes the same as it did when we painted the cabinets and still had the old counters.
And for the twelve years that I’ve been turning the corner and coming into the kitchen to fill up a giant mug with coffee and a tiny bit of creamer, I’ve never once looked around and not felt immensely grateful.
Because while the look of this kitchen might have changed over the years, here’s what hasn’t…
Yummy meals prepared, baking sessions with my kids, friends sitting on the stools and chatting, impromptu dance parties, Saturday morning pancakes, lines of people wrapping around the island waiting to dig into a buffet of food set out, birthday celebrations and some of the most sacred conversations ever.
As we’ve slowly made changes and improvements to our home, I’ve recognized more than ever the truth in these words from Paul in the book of Philippians (4:11), “I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.”
When it comes to our homes, I truly believe that learning to be content with how it looks now is what helps us to not put off enjoying the beauty of the moments that are right in front of us. It keeps us from living in a constant state of “if only”.
And, if you have the opportunity to update your counters or paint your cabinets or change your flooring, you will be able to enjoy them while still putting them in the proper place in your heart because you know that they are simply the backdrop for the things that matter the most.
Thank you for coming along with me and my kitchen on this journey for all of these years dear friends!