7/27/2017

{State of the Kitchen} Part 10: Highs and Lows

What a week!
This past week was full of highs & lows. It seems like every time we start going, something happens to make it screech to a halt. I expected the replacements to be delivered to the house Friday. The contractor was going to go by the courier on Thursday and pick them up as soon as they were delivered. Except...the Thomasville Rep called me around 4:30 to let me know that 3 items did not pass Quality Control, so nothing was shipped. Wasn't that nice of them to not let me know? 
The sheetrock guys came and halfway repaired the strip in the ceiling where the cabinets used to be. I sent the designer the picture and asked if they were planning on finishing. She said that they may not be finished; she will get with the contractor about finishing.
The ceiling is kind of repaired
They got some patching material on the chimney of the hood.
Saturday was a very bad day for us. CH was at a function and I did a load of laundry. I heard some weird sounds coming from the temporary sink.  When I went to investigate, the sink was almost overflowing and there was sludge coming up from the pipe.

How gross is this?
I bailed the water until the washing machine stopped draining (I couldn't stop the washer because it's in the basement), then went down to see if anything else had happened. It had.  There was water pouring out of the vent pipe, onto the shelf where CH has all of our camping equipment. I called him, and the contractor. Then I called our plumber, who said it sounded like there was something stopping up the pipe. He referred me to someone to clean out the pipes. 
So here we are, on the hottest day of the year, carrying out all of our camping equipment and setting it up so it will dry. The contractor denied that they had anything to do with it, although this is the first time we've ever had this problem. Also, there was a new clamp around the vent pipe, and we haven't had any plumbing done in that area. Very suspicious. 
Camping equipment had to be set up to dry after the monsoon in our basement.
The replacements ended up coming in on Monday and were delivered by the contractor on Tuesday. Since I went back to work on Tuesday, they came after I got home so there would be "an adult who can make decisions" on site (per Home Depot's policy). After feeling the doors, there were still 5 that are rough, and 2 of the drawers are giving on the sides. At this point, we just want them done, so I told the Rep that those 5 will just be rough, and once the drawers fall in I'll have them replaced through our warranty. However, CG2 used a very soft sandpaper and was able to smooth the doors. I have no idea why this wasn't done before, but maybe they were too rough the first time. Anyway, he did a fantastic job with them, and they are all smooth!!!
The measurements for the countertops were done on Monday; I looked at the slab on Wed.
The granite against the range & cabinet.
I'll have the appointment for them to be installed in about a week and a half.
My slab!
I also sent this picture to the designer. The contractor put up a board behind the range to house the wire. I noticed the wire from the outlet is not behind the board. This will be a concern when they start trimming the bottom.
Wire from the outlet in the peninsula is not behind the board.
Tuesday night, this is what the kitchen looked like:
Replacement doors came in and 1 wall cabinet is up.
Replacement cabinet is in the pantry.
Oh, but Wednesday night! It was a huge difference!
I have handles!!!
Just to remind you what the old pantry looked like:
I was so glad to see those doors go!
To how it looks today:
I love how it looks!
I love the "Pet Center"...Gurl Dogg does, too!
Now we're waiting for the utility cabinet to come in; it's supposed to be finished tomorrow so hopefully it will be delivered next week. We're also waiting for the other wall cabinet. Once those are in, the trim, valance, undercabinet lights & pendant lights can be put in. The blind corner cabinet still needs to be put together...I can't wait to see how that works when it's finished.
Then it will be the countertop & sink (with the garbage disposal hooked back up), followed by the backsplash and we'll be DONE. There is a light at the end of the tunnel!





7/20/2017

{State of the Kitchen} Part 9: Finally Some Progress

It's starting to take shape!
First all, I think it's a shame that there even is a part 9. Just ridiculous.
Amazingly, the contractor had a cabinet guy at my house on Friday to put in the base cabinets.
Base cabinets finally in on Friday. 
See all of those blue stickies on the doors? Those are the ones that have to be replaced. The replacement doors, cabinets, and drawers are scheduled to be delivered tomorrow.
On Saturday, I opened up the box for what I thought was my tiered cutlery dividers. I expected this:
I was really excited that this was going to be in my kitchen.
But what I got was this:
Not acceptable. This is a cheap piece of plastic.
I took it down to Home Depot to speak with the designer, but she wasn't back until Monday. The manager is on vacation this week, and the assistant manager whose name he gave me as a contact had the day off. The assistant manager who sat in the first meeting was there, so I spoke to him. He said that I received the wrong item. I emailed the rep, who confirmed that the plastic one was what was ordered. I told him that I didn't even know plastic was an option because we had never been shown the plastic one. Y'all...it's so cheap; no way would I have wanted that in my old cabinets, much less my new ones. The plastic dividers that I bought from WalMart are nicer than that. I also told the Rep that I can buy a bamboo divider on Amazon for $20 that will do nicely, so this plastic one will be returned for reimbursement. He emailed me back and said he would order the one I was expecting. This Rep is awesome.  It's just too bad not everyone else in the company has the same kind of commitment to excellence.

Monday, the original cabinet guy was here, but he wasn't sure why. He hung around and helped the 2nd cabinet guy put in the flooring and the hood. The contractor gave me a "Change Order Estimate", charging me $670 to replace the flooring. Yep, you saw that right...to replace the flooring.  I told him that the designer told me I was not going to be charged for that. He said, "Well, we can stop right here", so I told him I was going down to HD to talk to the designer. I was shaking I was so mad! I got to HD and no one was there: the designer, the assistant manager who I was told to talk to since the manager is on vacation, and the assistant manager who sat in on "the meeting". I told the associate that I needed to speak with someone in charge now. I spoke with another assistant manager and gave him the quick story. I showed him the email from the designer where she said that the contractor told her he was not going to charge us for the flooring or the ceiling. He checked with another assistant manager who confirmed that she sat in on the meeting where the contractor made that statement. The assistant manager said that I would not be responsible for the charge and that one way or the other it would be taken care of.
The owner of the construction company was at the house on Monday, and I gave him an earful. He said that he is a plumber by trade, and he wasn't happy with the plumbing to the sink. When we moved in, the plumber we used updated the plumbing from the basement to the kitchen floor, so he is replacing the plumbing from the kitchen floor to the sink...no charge. He is also giving us a temporary sink so we will have some water. That's a start, but no way does it make up for what I've been through this summer.

Tuesday, I met with the designer to clear some things up. We are not being charged for the flooring. On that same "Change Order Estimate", there was a $986 charge to put in the undercabinet lighting. The lighting was in the plan from the beginning. Apparently in the estimate, the part of the cabinet to hide the lighting was included, but not the labor. My question is: if the cabinet was in the estimate, how could he not have known I was having lighting put in? The designer is going to question that. I did tell her that it was her job to double check and make sure everything was on there.
The 2nd CG & the electrician knocked out a lot on Tuesday. I am starting to get excited again. Especially now that I can cook and wash dishes.
I can now cook and wash dishes!
No one was at the house yesterday. They really can't do anything with the cabinets until the replacements get here. CG2 said that someone would be on Thursday to work on the sheetrock and the ceiling.
On Tuesday when I got home from my piano lesson, 3 wall cabinets that were on the floor were gone. That would have been okay, but 1 of them was not being replaced. I told CG2 that I had white sticky notes with the word "Replace" on the ones that were being replaced. He said he didn't know because there were sticky notes all over the cabinets. Uh, yes...but there were only 3 that were white & said "Replace" on them, and 1 of those is on the wall. I've told them every day that the one on the wall is being replaced, but no one has taken it down yet. They didn't bother to ask CH (who was at home) about it. Someone was supposed to bring it back to the house yesterday, but no one came. I really hope they haven't tossed it.
I spent yesterday calling contractors that I know to get estimates on the undercabinet lighting. I'm going to fight to not have to pay for the contractor's mistake of not including it. I still have a situation of paying over $300 for permits that only cost $54. I discovered that yesterday and will have to take that up with the designer. This contractor may have gotten away with this in the past, but I'm not going to let him do this to me. There may be a logical explanation, but I don't know what it could be.

So...I'm finally getting excited again. There's a light at the end of the tunnel! The appointment for my countertops to be measured is Monday morning; hopefully I can view the slab Monday afternoon, then it will be a couple of weeks before it is installed. Providing the cabinets, drawers, and doors are all okay when they get to the house, I would think they could get an awful lot done before I go back to work on Tuesday.



7/19/2017

{Wednesday Hodgepodge} Grandparents, Babies, and Sour Things

From this Side of the Pond
1. Growing up, were you close to your grandparents? Tell us one or two specific things you remember about them.
I only had my maternal grandmother living when I was born, and I only saw her every other year when we made the trek down to Texas. As I got older, she was bedridden, so I only saw her for a few minutes out of the whole time we were there. I remember the 1 time I saw her walk: she was in my aunt's kitchen and she got out of her wheelchair, holding onto the counter as she walked.

2. What's an item you were attached to as a child? What happened to it?
I don't think I was attached to anything as a child...unless it was my thumb! It's still on my hand!

3. When you look out your window, do you see the forest or the trees (literally and figuratively)? Explain.
Literally: the trees. I live in a neighborhood that has wonderful big trees, but no forest.
Figuratively: the forest. Until I get this kitchen redone, there are too many forests out there.

4. Do you like sour candies? Which of the 'sour' foods listed below would you say is your favorite?

grapefruit, Greek yogurt, tart cherries, lemons, limes, sauerkraut, buttermilk, or kumquats 

Have you ever eaten a kumquat? What's your favorite dish containing one of the sour foods on the list?
I don't like sour things. I don't consider Greek yogurt to be sour, especially if it has fruit or some kind of flavor to it, so I'll go with it as being my favorite.
I've never eaten a kumquat. Key Lime Pie is pretty awesome, especially if it's fried!

5. July 1st marked the mid point of 2017. In fifteen words or less, tell us how it's going so far.
Sucky. (See my "State of the Kitchen" posts.)
6. Insert your own random thought here.
Summer is all but over for me. I go back to work on Tuesday...my kitchen won't be completely done; the measurement for countertops is scheduled on Monday, then it will be 10-12 business days after I view the slab for the installment. With any luck, I'll be able to cook in my new oven before then.

I'm linking up with Joyce at From This Side of the Pond for the weekly Wednesday Hodgepodge.
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