cookin’ room update

A while back I hinted that we were getting ready to update part of our cookin’ room (a.k.a. kitchen). We are thrilled with the result. It started with me saying to Mauri that if we asked our friend Russ to rebuild the cabinet above our refrigerator, we could buy a regular-sized fridge to fit under it. By the time Russ came to talk it over, we’d enlarged our vision, which grew from there. Creativity is a process that starts with a seed. And the seed was planted.

To completely appreciate the finish we’ll step back in time to one of my pre-marriage visits to 514.

original corner

First you’ll look at the people, which was the real reason I took this shot. I was a long way from thinking of this corner creatively. After you finish admiring the people, you’ll notice the cabinet, the back door, and the window (and the food dryer, which now lives in the garage, and the ancient microwave, which long ago bit the dust).


Between our engagement and our marriage, Mauri oversaw the addition of half a house and a total remodel of the cookin’ room. Those were unusual days as we faxed plans back and forth. Note the “island” the guys are leaning on. That is a floating cabinet on wheels.

french doors 2

Some time later, we traded in the windows and the old back entrance for a deck (for the smoker) and French doors. Champ’s presence on the scene lets me know we made these changes within seven years of the other pic.


Over time we made some aesthetic improvements with a bookshelf and an awkward attempt to cover the Gorilla rack. Gone is the bin of dog food! We will consider this the before picture.


Enter Russ Ragsdale. He was up for the challenge of taking our loose ideas and making them into a concrete plan of attack.


We dug into our assignment of choosing a new refrigerator. His patience with our creative process helped us all enjoy the project. Part of the goal was to give Mauri accessible spaces for his coffee roasting equipment.


We basically stayed out of his way while he performed his magic.


And then, well, maybe Russ could finish the French door (that has been unfinished all this time) to match the cabinets. For reasons of toxicity, he needed to remove the entire door and work on it at his shop.


Thankfully, we have other access to the backyard. Our dog was especially glad about that.


We’ll call this the after picture. You might understand our joy in the improvement.


A pull-out cabinet for the coffee gear.


More coffee gear and snacks!


A drawer big enough for garbage and recycle.


It wasn’t part of the plan, but it works perfectly to have trays handy for catching the hot dishes that come from the microwave, which isn’t close to a counter.


Remember the “floating cabinet”? Its deep shelves made accessibility especially difficult, so while you’re at it, Russ, how about building us some pull-out drawers?




And how can we use that old cabinet? Russ hung it in our washin’ room, where our freezer used to live. Get this…our small fridge fits perfectly under it! I love how a plan comes together.


Thanks, Russ! We love the work you did for us! See his other work here.

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10 Responses to cookin’ room update

  1. LOVE that picture of The Macys, The Williams

    Oh yes…Russ did a beautiful job. But…what did you do with your freezer? Sounds like it got relegated to the dumpster? 🙂

  2. Amy says:

    Russ sure does amazing work. I love the new look…and it’s super functional for you now too!

  3. LizW says:

    That looks fantastic!

  4. Looks great. I like the organized coffee drawer. the Behmor (sp) Bay.

  5. Julene says:

    What a great job of working in the new cabinets and refrigerator! The pull-out shelves are nice! Nice wall color,too!
    ps..I’ve enjoyed catching up..and it’s about time!

  6. Ridge says:

    Looks great! You have my dream fridge!!!!

  7. Pam MacDonald says:

    I must admit to a case of refrigerator envy…I know it’s wrong, but I just can’t help it! I love all the changes to your cookin’ room…very nice!

  8. Leane Chaffee says:

    Great renovation. Nothing like having your kitchen torn up! Pull out shelves are on my wish list too. Janet has them and loves them. Enjoy your new “cookin’ room”!

  9. Pingback: nut dryer | a little bit of this and a little bit of that

  10. Pingback: appreciation | a little bit of this and a little bit of that

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