Dear Crissy

Our kitchen renovation: Before

Kitchen Renovation... Here We Go!

This was our kitchen a few weeks ago.

Because I bought the home I grew up in, it’s also a space where I’ve spent countless hours of my life. Countless hours.

When my husband and I bought the house, those old cabinets (built with the house in 1954) were actually blue. The walls were papered, and the countertops were retro… but not in a good way. Even our kitchen table is a hand-me-down, and not exactly my style.

We made a few minor changes, but in the 5 years since my husband and I bought the house, the kitchen has never felt good to us.

Kitchen Renovation... Here We Go!

We knew that we wanted to do a true renovation on the kitchen, but we also knew that it would be some time before we had the means to begin. We made a few changes just to get by, but the room still felt dark and outdated.

We have now embarked on a true renovation.


1: to restore to a former better state by cleaning, repairing, or rebuilding.
2: to restore to life, vigor, or activity: revive.

Kitchen Renovation Before

Don’t mind the huge dish explosion. I was trying to get everything clean before packing it up prior to the tear-out. I’ve actually never owned a dishwasher, and that’s one of the things I’m most excited about having in the new kitchen!

We’ll be putting in an LG dishwasher with TrueSteam technology. In case you’re wondering, that’s a big leap from Crissy’s-hands-in-dishwater technology.

LG Dishwasher

I know that this isn’t the worst kitchen in the world, but we are definitely excited about upgrading.

I want our kitchen to feel fresh, clean, and most of all, I want it to be a functional room for our family. I want to feel like the kitchen is the heart of our home, because that’s what it should be.

My husband and I are SO ready to have the kitchen of our dreams, but we also know that renovation can be a hard road. We also know that there may be unexpected bumps in that road, that there will be periods of time when we’ll all have to be inconvenienced to reach our ultimate goal, but that in the end, this kitchen renovation is going to have an incredibly positive impact on our little family!

My husband is multi-talented, and much of this renovation will be DIY!

As ready as I was, it was still a shock to go from that before photo, to this

Kitchen Renovation... Here We Go!

Oh, and, the things we discovered in those ancient wall cavities. Let’s just say, insulation wasn’t one of them! Sixty years worth of nastiness, that we’ve been living and eating just inches away from? Check.

You also find things like this in the walls of a house built in 1954. Hello, Hopalong Cassidy!

Hopalong Cassidy Med-o-pure dairy!

We’re in the trenches of our kitchen renovation now! We have so many changes coming, and I can’t wait to show you different parts of the project along the way. You can also check out this Inspiration & Progress Pinterest Board that will be documenting the process!

Have you ever renovated a major living space in your home? What was the best part about accomplishing your renovation?

LG is providing appliances for my kitchen remodel. Opinions are genuine, and my own. Stay tuned for much more information about my kitchen remodel, and our LG appliances!

    25 Comments on “Our kitchen renovation: Before”

  1. wow your kitchen was amazing. I would of loved to transport it into my home

  2. We are in the process of working from room to room renovating. I have wanted to cry multiple times when people walk in my house I literally give them a full story of the start of the house from the 1950s to how to ended up the way it is now and that WE ARE FIXING it. lol. I’m just so happy to see that obviously others go through this type of thing too and I’m really excited to hear about the new appliances because we are going to be shopping for the kitchen soon too!

  3. We bought an old house 27 years ago. It took a year to make it liveable. We basicly stripped out the whole house. Yes…we found neat stuff in the walls too! A thimble, a Hersheys bar wrapper and mail. and the walls were insulated with magazine pages.
    It was a resthome in the 40’s.
    We have since redone the masterbath with a step in shower, replaced the dining room window and got new carpet in the living room 4 years ago. All the carpet was used. My bedroom carpet is about 55 years old. The next project is the bedroom! Then the laundry room. It’s never been painted. It’s still unfinished sheetrock. Remodeling never ends.!

  4. Kuodos to hubby! He must be very handy and you for raising a fam without a kitchen! Good luck with the renovations! Looking forward to seeing the results and what you get for that pin you found. Could be a collectors piece! I follow you on Pinterest as eyewonit so I will check there for progress! =)

  5. Whoa, big job to get done! Can’t wait to read about the progress, good luck!
    And drooling over your new LG dishwasher – I want. I want!!!!

  6. Oh!!! I so like how cute it was before- can’t wait to see the after pictures. That is gross about inside the walls. I know we pulled a bathroom apart here about five years ago and it was vulgar. Mold and stuff. Icky! I can’t wait to see this reno when it’s revealed!

  7. I am so excited for you! I would love to do some renovation work in our kitchen at some point. Luckily we do have a dishwasher. I don’t know what I would do without it! I am actually debating painting our cabinets eventually… is that a scary project or one that with planning I can handle DIY? Renovation is so exciting!

  8. I can’t wait to see the results! We’re still living in an apartment so no renovations for us yet. We plan in buying a fixer upper so we’ll have huge renovations then.

  9. I actually like your current cabinets, but am anxious to see the new kitchen! We did a kitchen renovation earlier this year and it was a long process. Hope yours goes smoothly and you’re in your new kitchen soon!

  10. We’ve been doddling with the idea of a kitchen renovation but I’m terrified to do it. How in the world do you feed your family when the kitchen is torn out for days/weeks/ and for some, months? Something I’ve always wondered. Not to mention the cost of doing it… I need to just get on it and do it.

    • It is not easy. We don’t even have a sink right now, except in the bathroom. We’re spending a lot of time at Grandma’s house, and the kids are learning to love poptarts for breakfast, lol. Not ideal, but for the common good! :)

  11. We are just about to finish a complete kitchen renovation! We bought a small home built in 1952–it’s an awesome brick house, but the kitchen was… could tell it was a kitchen, because it had a stove and refrigerator…that’s about all I can say. Anyway, It was completely nerve wracking to have it down to nothing, to no walls, something like your pic! Now it is beautiful! We have a bit of painting left to do and some work on the floor, but I already LOVE it. I cooked our first meal in the new kitchen just last night. SO worth it.

  12. I cannot wait to see what the after looks like! We live in an 1865 farmhouse and have been considering some serious renovations here too!

  13. We had no insulation either! I guess that was pretty common in the older homes. You would think people back then still would like to stay warm, but I guess they weren’t worried about the skyrocketing price to heat your home. We use oil and our bill is tremendous in the winter.

    Our kitchen is currently being renovated too. They say that new kitchens (and bathrooms) greatly improve the value of your home. It’s stressful, but the outcome will be worth it.

    I can’t wait to see your kitchen with all the new appliances!! LG is a great brand.

  14. Despite the inconvenience, I am insanely jealous that you’re getting a new kitchen. Can’t wait to see the in progress pictures.

  15. How exciting. But I’m sure you’re ready for it to be over, especially with two young children in the house. I bet you’re excited about upgrading your kitchen and your appliances. Looking forward to seeing some LG appliances in your newly renovated kitchen. We have LG appliances in our kitchen, wouldn’t use anything else. It’s neat that you found that old pin in the walls.

  16. Oh! How exciting!!! AND how soooo nice of LG to supply the appliances… you will LOVE the dishwasher! :)

    Our last house we owned we(ok my husband and dad) tore a bathroom to the studs. It was only 6ft x 8ft but all the tile and layers took up 3 pickup loads to haul away! whewww built in the 50s with chicken wire to put on the plaster. My husband moved the shower faucet up a foot because it was so short he used to have to squat down to use it. LOL Ended up looking amazing with onyx stone that my husband installed. Beeeaaauutiful! Plus was pretty cheap since it was only 6ft x 8ft room!

    • I know exactly what you mean about the multiple truckloads of material that has to be hauled away, it’s AMAZING, the amount of layering that goes on in 60 years. Several layers of flooring and walls.

      Instead of tearing out and starting over, they just kept adding layer, after layer! Nice to get all that junk OUT during the renovation! Thanks for commenting! :)

  17. We were still settling into our first owned home when we had to do a HUGE remodel / fix, thanks to my husband’s 220 gallon fish aquarium. The fish decided to redecorate, and they couldn’t find a good home for the return hose for the UV pump. So they pushed it out. Within 10 minutes, we had 150 gallons of fish water flooding our house. Did I mention that we have a triple-wide manufactured home? And we quickly learned how UN-level it sits. Anything the water touched had to be destroyed – because of the bacteria level in aquariums, the water is considered “black water”. And drywall sucks it up like a sponge!! 14 walls had to have the drywall cut out 18″ up, the guest bathroom lost its vanity and linen cupboards, the hallway built-ins were toast, and ALL THE FLOORING in the living room, dining room, kitchen, hallway, 2 of my kids’ bedrooms, and a bathroom. Instead of fixing the drywall of the closets that separated my two youngest boys’ rooms, we tore out ’em out – they now share a 10′ x 22′ room. AND THE ENTIRE HOUSE NOW HAS TILE FLOORS!! The 220 gallon aquarium that caused the $34,000 of damage that insurance did NOT cover has been turned into a terrarium for our bearded dragons instead, but I kept my non-offending 60 gallon tanks that flank our flat screen tv. At least if they flood the house, we won’t have to worry about the floors!

  18. My husband & I renovated our last kitchen. Thinking that we were good, we then tackled the basement. We did all the stuff from running electric, to drywall, and flooring. Did I mention we added a bathroom also? Yeah, that was a big ol’ task…I miss that house! :)

  19. I admire You for having your old homestead, that is awesome…everything will be well worth the effort of doing all that hard work!

  20. We have renovated 85% of this home we are in now for 7yrs(but forgot to do this!) BUT our house before this one when we renovated it, we rolled up pur newpaper from that day and left it btwn the studs in the walls. Then, the next time its renovated & walls taken down someone will find it & know when it was last done :).

  21. I have had a few remodels in my curent house. The bathroom was the worst. Our contractor sent us a guy that says- I have never put tile on a wall before…on the first day.. I should have stopped right there.. He redid it twice.. then they finally sent the good guy.. he also DRAGGED my washer and dryer through my house- over my marble tile.. ruining it. Thankfully we had spares in the garage…
    It was a 3 day job that took a month. It was hell! The end result was just so so, even though the materials we picked were pure awesome.. we even had good references from the company. Clearly, the reviews were based on someone who didn’t do work at my house!

    Not to scare you though..sorry.. but be sure if you use someone, that you inspect often and complain early!

    I hope you are keeping the curtains- they are so cute!

    • Hi Michelle!

      No, I agree, there are so many potential avenues for problems when you undertake huge projects like this! We’ve been lucky to work with contractors that we have great history with, so it’s been good on that front so far!

      thanks for stopping by!

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