Barry’s started the peninsula. He had to carve a hole in one of the walls he’s carefully built up with plaster, and put a pole into the spare bit of worktop (actually, he accidentally attached the pole to the top side, but never mind!).

At the moment, it’s balanced in the hole, but he needs to attach it and cut a bit of upstand, then stain it all so it matches the rest of the worktops.

In the meantime, I’ve been working on my boot tops for my Supergirl outfit. More on that tomorrow!

Photos of the balanced peninsula below.

Double whammy

Two good things happened yesterday, kitchen-wise: the joiner made a start and a man with a van came to pick up the old kitchen!  Hurray!

I’ve included four photos from yesterday morning, before I went to work, and then five from when I got home and the man had taken all the bits away.  The worktop has all been cut (including a hole for the sink), it just needs fixing.  Richard the Joiner (RtJ, as he shall henceforth be known), broke several jigsaw blades on the solid wood and had to get some more!  There’s enough of the worktop left for us to have a little bit of surface coming out of the wall by the door – we’ll just need to get a brushed stainless steel post.

RtJ has also cut some plinth for underneath the oven so you can’t see the bodge job of making it higher, but it means we’re going to run out of plinth, so may need to have some further bodging of using end panel for some of the plinth area.  Barry and I nipped to Wickes last night to get some glue and silicone so he can continue today.  Barry also spent a lot of last night preparing the pipework for under the sink so he can do that quickly once RtJ’s finished today.

The man who collected the old kitchen couldn’t believe how many parts there were to it.  He was glad he’s not the one putting it back together!  I’ll be very surprised if I don’t get at least one call from the eBay woman with questions about it.


It’s felt a long time coming, but finally the best day of the month is here: payday! Can’t decide what we’re going to buy first – lights, worktop cutting, flooring. Tiles? Floorboards? Still can’t decide for the kitchen. The list goes on. Seriously, the list goes on so long we’re dedicating about three months of combined wages to it, just for what we want to do immediately!

I’m in a lottery syndicate at work and with the triple Euromillion rollover on Tuesday (which we sadly didn’t win), we were inevitably discussing what we would do with the (£4.85m each) winnings. Barry wouldn’t be finishing the kitchen himself, that’s for sure! In fact, we wouldn’t need this kitchen because I’m pretty sure we wouldn’t want to live in a semi-detached with that kind of dough. It’s another rollover tonight, and we’ll be playing again.

Imagine the house you could have with that kind of money. It blows your mind: you could actually have anything you wanted. I’m pretty happy with the kitchen choice though, so I may actually may buy it again with my imaginary winnings. We’d definitely be having an island

I was all ready to write another ranting post about the tap situation last night. On our way to the cinema, we had a few minutes to kill, so we nipped into B&Q across the road to collect our cooker hood filters and ask about the tap. After spending more than a reasonable amount of time staring at the selection available, the only tap that matched the sink we have, other than the one we’d chosen, was just over twice the price. Our original tap was £89, and this one was £179.

We had a really nice member of staff helping us. He got a cherry picker to lift him and the new tap up, to check what it looked like next to our sink (which was inevitably 5m up, the furthest up). We all agreed it matched. Then came the hard part. As we’d already arranged finance for the rest of the kitchen, with the other outgoings we have this month, we weren’t happy to fork over the difference in cash for a supplier issue that wasn’t our fault. If we’d known when ordering that the tap we’d wanted was unavailable, we’d have picked the only other tap that matched and it would have been price matched. We offered Jason K (the lovely, patient member of staff) another option: get the tap we do want transferred from another store. I think Romford had the only remaining tap in the country. This was apparently impossible due to paperwork.

We did point out that, along with it being the only other mono brushed effect tap (I know all the lingo now), we are currently washing up in the bath, and we were the ones that had noticed the tap had been missing; we hadn’t been told before the delivery had arrived (or even with the delivery). I also pointed out several things were wrong with the order, they price-matched Wickes anyway, so if we knew the original one was out of stock we’d only have chosen this one anyway, and Barry made the observation that we’d spent quite a bit on a kitchen that we may have to return…

Jason called his manager a couple of times to explain the situation, but because she couldn’t (wouldn’t?) come down to speak to us, she couldn’t see that we weren’t just some grabbing couple who had decided to jump from a mid- to top-range tap with no reason. I felt a bit sorry for him at that point, because I know he would have just given us the tap (not just to get rid of us, he genuinely believed we had a good point).

Jason carefully wrote down our issues, and many reasons, and said he’d get back to us tomorrow. We went to the cinema (This Means War, quite funny), and when we came out, a voicemail from Jason was waiting.

He’d sorted it with the manager! Hooray for Jason! While we were in the area, we asked if we could come straight over to collect it, and so we did. It even comes with its own soft cover.

Chalk one for B&Q customer services; they should promote Jason.


Island living

I’ve always wanted an island in the kitchen.  It’s the dream.  That’s when you know your kitchen is amazing.  As an example, our friend Sarah has an amazing kitchen.  She has an island.

When we were planning our kitchen, I originally didn’t think we could have one because the fridge will now be at the other side of the room, and I thought it would be annoying to have to walk round something if I was cooking.  Now the walls are down, we’re thinking we might fit a cheeky slim one in by the front door.  It may have to take the form of a breakfast bar, more of a peninsula, but it would still count!

Obviously, this is further down the line.  We have a butcher’s block at the moment which could go there (but I maintain it doesn’t go and will spoil the effect of the new kitchen).  Not sure what Barry would do if I just listed it on eBay…

The new kitchen arrives today!  It will probably be less exciting when everything’s boxed up and we’ve still got to paint and rip out the old kitchen, but until then, I’ll be excited!  Photos to follow.

In the meantime, you’ll have to make do with photos of the progress.  Left is the hole where a cupboard used to be, and below shows no upstand or cupboard for the boiler.

As a side note, why do you think builders place boilers a silly distance from the wall?