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The Revelation of Having a Kitchen Again

Sarah Buys a House is a chronicle of Sarah DeGiorgis' journey along the road to home ownership and renovation in West Philadelphia.

The most amazing thing happened tonight. I came home from work and had a beer, but that's not the amazing thing. The amazing thing is that when we started to get hungry, my boyfriend and I did not have to eat something cold or walk to his apartment to make dinner...we cooked dinner in my kitchen! Well, he cooked dinner and I washed plates and glasses for us to use for dinner - I am not the cook in this relationship. As of Monday morning the kitchen was not yet done. The sink was usable as long as you didn't let the water run for too long and the microwave worked but I've never been a big fan of microwaves. But then my god of a plumber came back Monday while I went to work and hooked up the garbage disposal and stove and voila!

I came home from work on Monday nervously turned on the burners on the stove one by one. Right front, on! Right rear, on! Left front, on! Left rear, on! Hey, that's better than before we unhooked the stove since only three worked then. Then I turned on the new faucet over my new sink and marveled at the hot water and how big and shiny the sink was...and then I proceeded to try to attach a handle to a drawer and apparently did not measure correctly because it was just the tiniest bit off and then I gave up. But you know what? I (and my boyfriend and my father) built all of these IKEA kitchen cabinets so I will figure out that handle and fix it.

Yes, this kitchen is all IKEA. I don't really like Ikea furniture because it looks like, well, like it came from IKEA. But their kitchen cabinets are pretty classic and you really can't beat the value that comes with building and installing them yourself. I feel like I should stop here and reiterate that I didn't do this all myself. It would be awesome if I did, but I had help from my father, my boyfriend and a carpenter. Still it was markedly cheaper to go the IKEA cabinet route since the kitchen before had like two cabinets and they were gross. The kitchen before also had a very old green sink which I kind of loved (because I love green) but was also kind of dingy in that way that no amount of scrubbing would ever change. I tried, trust me. In fact, I still have that sink and plan on using it somewhere else, either the basement or perhaps a little potting shed...but all this will happen in due time.

So the cabinets are all Ikea and I am duly shamed. The appliances that were there when I bought the house - the stove and refrigerator - seemed relatively new and worked well, except for the fact that one burner on the stove didn't work but now it does. I have never been a big fan of microwaves and lived for three years here without one, so I wasn't too worried about that. As for a dishwasher, I've never had an apartment that had one and a dirty little secret of mine is that I don't even know how to use one...I once got made fun of by a friend's mother for making it to the advanced age of 23 without learning how to use a dishwasher. I really didn't know what to say - my parents didn't even have one! - but I must say I'm pretty good at hand-washing dishes. And I kind of even enjoy it. So I didn't really even want a dishwasher. But Ikea had a cheap one and also a cheap microwave so my father thought it would be good for resale value if nothing else to have them. The one thing I did want, though, was a garbage disposal. I think those things are awesome and also I really hate cleaning out the food bits that get trapped in the sink-drain-catcher-thing (scientific name) each time you do the dishes. And now I don't have to do that anymore! Hooray for new kitchens!