Month: November 2015

Kitchen Renovation: Part 2

So this past week has been super productive. Check out this post for all of the before pictures of the kitchen.

First off the countertop. We started off wanting to make a concrete countertop. My Padre did it in his rockstar house but said it was “hell on earth” to do. We thought through a neat Formica that looks like marble, then granite, but we ended with Quartz for its durability. We purchased it locally from Jeffress Stone and have had a great experience thus far.

D took advantage of a free Saturday and took out the existing countertops with his Dad.       
Although we were warned that its a nightmare, it took them about three hours to get it all up. I was thoroughly impressed! To remove a tile counter you have to first remove the tile which is adhered to plywood. Then you unscrew the wood from the cabinet. Sounds easy; is not easy.

Second, the hardware. Do you see the new drawer pulls above? We chose the Martha Stewart line at Home Depot. We chose different hardware for the drawers than the cabinets and really love how it turned out so far(still waiting on the cabinet hardware). Such an inexpensive fix that totally changed the look of our cabinets.

Next-we talked through backsplashes ad nauseam. I was pretty sold on white subway tile with dark grout but D ended up having to leave our tile backsplash up since it was behind the cabinets. He thinks that it would be too thick to tile on top of it. We had some crazy ideas but ended up choosing to do bead board. The more pictures I see, the more excited I’m getting! It definitely will lend itself for the more farmhouseish look I’m going for in this house. We may even get fancy and do a design! We have a bit of a holiday time constraint so it could end up plain which will still look great.

Onto the floor. We’re waiting for it to be delivered still but we purchased “sawcut Colorado” from Allure. We used the same product, different color in the rental bathroom and really loved it. It’s great with water and is floating, so it’s easy to replace a piece if necessary.

Lastly, I started dabbling with paint samples. I got Polar Star from Valspar and Modern Gray from Sherwin Williams. Polar star seemed too silver/icy but I actually loved Modern Gray. The link makes it look tan but it really is just a warm gray. 

Ok. I think that’s all for the updates. I can’t wait to share some more progress next week!


Kitchen Renovation: Part 1

I’ve been bursting at the seams to start the new house renovations and this week it all began.

Here’s the back story: the kitchen is  mostly fine. It was probably done in the mid 90s which apparently lends itself to lots of tile. Tile on tile on tile.  

  Tile floor 
That first picture is the tile floor. A very “ahead of the times” herringbone ruined by a not great finish. That second picture is the tile countertops which continues into the backsplash. I am a germaphobe. I can’t live with the countertop without wondering when we will all get salmonella or worse from the grout. Yuck.

Next up: hardware. 

 Hardware is pretty easy. It’ll be a quick fix. As is the paint. 

Finally: eat in table.

Excuse the chaos, please! Just put the kids to bed so nothing is pretty. This is a big table/chairs in a little room. I get the first swing at this bad boy! I’ve actually been using this a ton but I really think it’s because I’m so scared of the grout. The kitchen will feel a lot bigger without it and I can’t wait! 

We decided to keep the cabinets. There really isn’t anything wrong with them and although we probably wouldn’t stand in a store and pick them out oday, they really are fine. The appliances are pretty dreadful, especially that stinking enormous fridge. No sense in wasting money so we will let them die one by one and replace them with stainless at that time. Unless a faithful blog reader wanted to donate a couple thousand bucks. Totally kind of kidding.

Stay tuned for the plans coming next week!


I’ve never been one to do the whole “word a year” thing. The last few weeks though, this word, relentless, has kept coming to mind. I think it will be my 2016 word but I’m starting early. I think most know what it means but I looked it up anyway and loved the definition Google gave: oppressively constant, incessant.

That’s how it’s been feeling. Oppressively constant. 

I’ve been known to be relentless. Growing up I would get my mind on something and just bug the daylights out of my parents until I could get it. I was young and bargaining meals for toys with them. Of course they always won and I had to eat dinner but I would just say “instead of feeding me this meal, could you buy me this thing”. Silly me, thought it was a money thing, not an entitlement thing. It’s comical looking back but scary now as I see my daughter. She forgets nothing. She will repeat herself 1000 times until she gets what she wants or has a very stern conversation from us. It can feel suffocating.

That’s how it’s felt the last few months. It feels like my loved ones are being cornered. Like one by one their health has been sacrificed and I’m having to question each one of their permanence on this earth, but more specifically in my life. It’s been ugly. They’ve all turned out ok but after some questionable news a few days ago that stopped me in my tracks, I woke up to my baby having croup today. So here I am, for the second time this week, wondering what one of my people really means to me, watching his chest rise and fall, praying for a clear sound.


I know how to be relentless. It’s how I married my D, after all. We were with family we don’t get to see very often over the weekend in Louisville. They asked about our journey to marriage and I was reminded again, I can be relentless. I can fight for someone. 

Recently ut’s gotten so personal and sometimes feels all encompassing. These times as a Christian mean my nose should be planted square on the floor, storming the gates of heaven for these people in my life, these terrors attacks, these tefugees. But once I stand back up I’ve been challenged that being relentless also means more. It means fighting on their behalf in prayer but it means fighting for good to prevail and being part of the good. I have a small square of earth and it all matters. How I treat my people, but also how I treat yours. Even more, how am I speaking about them, how am I teaching my kids to think, pray, and speak for those they’re called to battle for and against, the people that will push their noses to the floor, those whose potential loss makes them go to battle; makes them be relentless to the gates of heaven. How am I modeling this? How am I showing them it matters? It has to!

If we had our noses to the floor, in every country. If we got up and did something to make the world more loving, more beautiful, if we bought Christmas gifts that support local businesses or efforts that pay people in other countries fairly instead of going to the mall because it’s easier. Wouldn’t it all mean something?  If we told our elected officials on Election Day and every day they’re in office what we think, won’t it change something? It has to. It has to mean something, it has to bring heaven to earth just a little bit.