Photos via Lowe's Facebook

In the 10 years we’d lived in this house, we’d never remodeled our kitchen. I now realize that home improvement projects are the grown up version of When You Give A Mouse A Cookie. I just wanted to paint the outdated cabinets, dammit…
Sounds simple enough, right? So we found a refinisher kit, emptied out all the cabinets, and stacked everything around the house. Four days of not knowing if dishes in various rooms of the house were clean or dirty was a true test for this borderline OCD momma. But I survived and they looked great.

Cabinets, check.

But when everything was put back where it belonged, we realized the cabinets looked so great that the countertops looked like crap. Five weeks and countless fights with Lowes later, our new countertops arrived...aaaand everything from the cabinets had to be removed. Again. And you can't upgrade your countertops without also upgrading your sink. Surprised you didn't know that. Enter 4 days of no countertop, no sink, and no running water. And just for fun, picture our old countertop and stainless steel sink piled outside on our driveway, because we're the best neighbors to live beside ever.

Countertops, check.

Now let's discuss the line of old paint running across our walls because the new countertop wasn't as tall as the old one. There was also a rather large scraped up section from where the countertop was forced down the wall because it hadn't been cut short enough. My fingers were involved, as well as a string of profanity, so let's just skip over that scene, shall we? We'd just painted those walls the previous year, so back to Lowes again with scraps of chipped paint pieces...mixed with finger skin...for them to match with their super-cool-we-can-match-any-paint-color machine, until the guy freakin’ loses my scrap of paint, so he decides to wing it, and I get home to realize it's a shade too dark.

Repaint the entire kitchen, f'ing check.

The kitchen looked amazing until you looked at the old linoleum floor. And if you're gonna change out the flooring, you may as well replace the old fridge while you're at it, adding that into the pile on the driveway, and earning us yet another Neighbor Of The Year Award. Aw, shucks, it's the least we can do.

So on one hot August Tuesday, the stove, table, chairs, and hutch were crammed into our living room and the guy who was laying our tile arrived. Thank you, Lord, an end is in sight. Until he left at the end of his first day and said, "Like I told your husband, you can't walk on this for 3 days.” Whoa, wait. What the crap did you just say?

The floor wouldn't be ready until Friday, which was incidentally the day we expected the arrival of our new refrigerator, which is the one day a week I have massage clients come to my house, and was coincidentally the day we were hosting a large family dinner.

The refrigerator was scheduled for delivery between 8am and noon, my first client was scheduled at 1pm, and our dinner didn’t start until 6. This should run like clockwork. That is if freakin’ Lowes knew what clockwork meant.

They didn't arrive until 12:45, and as they dollied the monstrous refrigerator out of their truck, I began to wonder how it would fit. Turns out, it didn't.

When my first client arrived, both doors into our house had been completely removed and a refrigerator was blocking our hallway while my husband explained to the Lowes guys that he hadn't actually measured anything before choosing the fridge, but had "eyeballed it." 

Let's just say that an angry massage therapist isn’t exactly ideal and I'll be surprised if that client ever comes back.

By the time our family arrived for dinner, my husband was covered in sawdust from where he had to saw off the bottom section of our newly refinished cabinets to squeeze the fridge under. You really can’t tell unless you look closely. Please don’t look closely.

By the time everyone left, so had my anger. Until I tried to open the freezer and the kitchen door frame blocked it, which led me to realize that reaching the kitchen light switch was no longer an option, either.

Before I could say anything, he said, "This isn't a big deal. We'll just shorten the countertop again."

Head exploded, check.

 
A year later, our beautifully finished kitchen almost makes me forget what we went through to get it.
 
Actually, no. No, it doesn't.

Shari Courter has been married to her high school sweetheart for 23 years. They have 4 children, 1 daughter-in-law, 1 son-in-law, 1 grandson and 1 granddaughter. She's a Licensed Massage Therapist, Zumba instructor, freelance writer, blogger and published author with stories in 5 of the Not Your Mother's Books anthology series. You can follow Shari on Facebook or at Close Courters Blog where she's known for openly sharing her family's many (mis)adventures. Be prepared to hear the good, the bad and the holy crap. 

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