Well, there are a few things that can be improved about our kitchen, some which are tiny little minor annoyances, and others which are much much bigger pains in the butt. When a kitchen is over 40 years old, it's inevitable that some aspects might have lost their luster, or worse. I'll start with the smallest and finish big:
****You've already seen the photos of the cabinets; the outsides are fine, just not my style. A completely shallow statement on my part. I admit it.
****The white countertops are sliced, diced, scorched, stained, and coming apart at the seams. Some hard prep for lots of meals was done on these babies, that's for sure. The wood trim on the edge has only a few sad vestiges of finish left, and again, it's just not my thing.
****There's a largish imbedded wall heater next to the fridge that we were warned at our inspection not to use for fear the house might burn down. 'Nuff said.
****The refrigerator is outside of the triangle. Yes, yes, I know the triangle is considered outmoded in some circles, but when we are cooking and need more butter and then some milk and then sheesh we forgot the cheese and it's at the other end of the room, it gets a wee bit annoying. We need a more functional workspace.
****Soffits! I know sometimes these are necessary to hide AC ducts or the like, but we don't have any AC. As far as anyone can tell, the soffits in our kitchen were a purely aesthetic choice likely popular at the time, complete with chair rail to delineate the tops of the cabinets from the soffit wall. Maybe no one made cabinets taller than 30" back in the day, I don't know. Because our ceilings are so high, our soffits are big, too. We're knocking them out.
****A 15 year old over-the-cooktop microwave that is supposed to vent (and doesn't) so whenever we boil water or cook bacon our cabinets around the cooktop get all steamy and smelly. Fun! For a bonus delight, the microwave really only cooks on one side, so a plate has to be turned multiple times while reheating. Double fun!
****There are who knows how many layers of flooring in the kitchen, but it is enough that we have a small step into and out of the room. We'd like a flat floor.
****Remember in the previous post when I mentioned that part of a porch had been incorporated into the big 1968 kitchen remodel? You can tell exactly where the dining room used to end and the porch used to begin because the floor starts to take a downward slope toward the sink at exactly that point. Old house, lots of settling.
****Perhaps the biggest issue, having lived through one frigid winter here? Aside from the aforementioned ancient wall heater/potential fire hazard, there's no other source of heat in the kitchen save an extremely loud toekick heater of indeterminate age. I tried it once and found the combination of headache, ringing in the ears, and yelling to be heard less than pleasant, so chose to go without. Now granted, we just came from 6+ years in the Deep South, so maybe our blood was running a little thin last winter, but I swear the temperature in the kitchen was at least 10 degrees cooler than the rest of the house, and by the sink over that old porch? Dropped another 10, guaranteed. I practically needed mittens to do the dishes. Forget pretty light fixtures and pristine counters---without a doubt our favorite aspect of the new kitchen will be toasty toes while making our morning joe.
I want to clarify here and for all future posts: I know we are just talking about a kitchen and that it is very inconsequential in the scheme of the world and the universe. We know we are quite fortunate indeed to have the opportunity to create our "dream kitchen" and though we haven't even started demo yet, we already know we never want to do it again, so we'd better do it right this time!