When we bought our house, it came well-equipped. Two bathrooms, a refrigerator, central air, a garage…and a stove. This one, in fact.
I have no idea how old that thing is. It’s a Fridgidaire all-electric, 40 inches wide. Side-by-side ovens, self-cleaning, for its day no doubt state-of-the-art.
And Donna couldn’t wait to get rid of it. She wanted a gas range. Well and good. Of course, having just shelled out money to buy the house, we didn’t have a lot left over to start replacing appliances. We did get a new refrigerator and over the years we’ve updated things as needed. Both of us are too cheap, er, frugal to toss something like a stove out just because we don’t like it, so we decided to replace it when (a) we were really flush or (b) when it died.
Little by little it began to die. The burners mainly. Till a couple of years ago we were down to one full-functioning burner and a warming one. Well, last month the whole thing went blewey. Great, brilliant sparks shot out of the control panel, the circuit breaker flipped, it is dead, Jim. Dead.
“Damn,” was followed immediately by eager grins.
We shopped for a new one. This would be a standard size, 30 inch. We decided that as long as the space was empty, let’s replace the floor.
Here you see the choices we came down to. Naturally, we considered doing stone. We love stone. Stone is good. Stone is also very expensive. Besides, the only stone we found that we both loved was the single sample toward the left-hand corner. That’s sandstone. Terrible material for a kitchen, where liquids get spilled all the time. Besides, we’d have to seal it every year and things like that we’re not so good about.
So we come to the two shades of tile. Black marble and something called Eurogrlacier Ice. We both liked both, Donna the marble, me the ice. (Yes, I know that was ungrammatic, but “I the ice” just don’t sound right.) We compromised and opted for a checkerboard. This is not stone, this is just tile. But we liked it.
But first we had to have a gas line run and the electricity changed from 220 to 110.
You can see here, also, just how yellowed the old floor had become over the years. Definitely time for a new look.
So we hired a young man (actually our friend Jim’s son-in-law) to do the work. Jeff is very fast and competent and we are pleased with his work.
Last Saturday, the new stove arrived. Unintentionally, we ended up with another Fridgidaire. This is all gas, with five burners. This is just what we wanted. Installed, there was but one more detail to take care of. (Well, one for now.)
Note the gap between stove and counter and cabinet. We talked about building a cart to slide into the space, or just getting a piece of countertop to bridge the gap. In the end, we opted to move the entire cabinet.
Moving the cabinet also gave us full access to the drawer and the cabinet below, both of which had been partly blocked by the refrigerator (because we bought the biggest damn ice box we could that would fit that space at the time!) and also affords us a bit more usable counter space.
Now, of course this isn’t the whole project. We still intended to paint the walls and ceiling and eventually get the cabinet doors refinished, but this alone has given us a strikingly new look. At the moment, I don’t care. All I care about right now is that I can now cook. Really cook.
I just hope I haven’t forgotten how.
p.s. I should point out that we intend eventually the replace the countertops as well, but given the cost we can make do till…later. We’re thinking track lighting, too. Again, later.