Our kitchen remodel – week #6 – It’s done!


The kitchen is finished … mostly! The counter-depth fridge is backordered … and should arrive in a couple of weeks. The gist of this week was all the really fun stuff … getting the kitchen sink hooked up … thank you Jesus … and finishing up electrical with under-cabinet lighting. It is going to take me a couple of weeks to figure out which button turns on which light. Appliances were also delivered and installed. Who gets this excited about a warming drawer? We now have pendant lighting above the island, light fixture above breakfast table and hardware on the cabinets. After that … some paint touchup and cleanup and it was a magical moment … we have our house back!

First recipe cooked in the new oven … a couple loaves of pumpkin bread!

Jerry at Finishing Touches has a great crew of craftsmen and suppliers. I also enjoyed working with Anne Crawford, an awesome kitchen designer, who made us feel confident about our color choices and the Charley Harper art tile possibilities.

Tomorrow I will be performing some serious baking duties for our upcoming Thanksgiving feast! We have so much to be thankful for!

Our kitchen remodel – week #5


Week #5 of our kitchen remodel has been pretty exciting. Basically, the floor was repaired, additional electrical work and so much more! My favorite part was the Kohler sink. It is beautiful! It is porcelain with black and brown speckles. Still couldn’t use the sink this week … but we are inching toward the finish line.

Oh … and then there was the granite installation. John, the granite dude, was in the driveway complaining about how difficult this particular granite was to shape. After about the third time telling me how combative the granite was I stepped back and pondered how I was going to turn him around. I didn’t want John and his crew being a bunch of grumpy bugs in my house all day. So I simply said, “But you are doing this for a very nice lady.” You should have seen his face. Changed everything! By the time he left the house about 5 o’clock he was giving me a hug goodbye.

The only negative thing I can say about the granite process is even though the granite pieces were cut they had to do some fine tuning. This created the biggest white dust cloud I’ve ever seen in my lifetime. And the wind blew most of it right over our neighbor’s house. Obviously, the next day I went to my local florist and hand delivered flowers.

Our backsplash also went up. Grout is next week. The Charley Harper art tiles are from Motawi Tile based in Ann Arbor, Michigan. I have some ladybug fabric based on his art and when I saw the art tiles, I thought they sure would make my kitchen a happy place.

Next week … appliances, hardware and the last of the lighting and some paint touchup … and then we are done!

Our kitchen remodel – week #4


Our kitchen remodel week #4 was pretty exciting … Baby Ben was born … Rick had his 9th clinical trial infusion … and there was lots of paint! This week priming and sanding of cabinets, texturing of walls and then final paint on cabinets happened. Lots of dust … and that “new paint” smell. It was a long week with painters in the house … but the results are so worth it! The cabinet color is “stucco.” The kitchen island color is called “caviar.” And the color of the walls, which we don’t have much of, is called “waterfall.” It totally matches the three art tiles which will go above the range. I know … it is a little different. Trust me. But then again … this is what happens after waiting 35 years to remodel a kitchen.

Rick is still creating delicious breakfasts on the grill on the weekends. Chances are a kitchen sink is in our future. A gas range can’t be far behind.

A cancer journey with immunotherapy – Infusion #8 and magical infusion #9


Since maintenance immunotherapy infusions are pretty routine stuff, I’ll be writing about them two at a time. Both infusion number 8 and 9, two weeks apart, started at 6:30 am with bloodletting. Only now since we are so far into the clinical trial, they only take about five vials instead of 15. Then we hang out for a couple of hours and wait for test results before meeting with clinical research peeps and oncologist. After bloodwork is blessed, we head up to 8th floor to wait for infusion. Usually back at home by 2 or 2:30. We can do this!

Infusion #9 was a pretty darn special forty-eight hours. Our daughter, Katie, went into labor with her second babe the day before the infusion. When I got the news, it took most of the morning to get my ducks in a neat little row. I quickly packed a bag, got a quick kennel reservation for Lulu, and a spot for Mimi at her respite house before heading into Houston for a few days. There was a high alert placed for our son-in-law’s parents, Nana Jana and Pee-Paw to assist with little Jacob. They drove in from the Dallas area. Yes … it would take four grandparents to take care of one little toddler! Jacob is a busy boy. Rick and I picked him up from daycare and then out to dinner. As Houston is not our usual arena, we relied on Yelp for dinner spots and almost wound up taking little Jacob to a sports bar. A quick call to our daughter in labor and we settled into a more appropriate dinner spot.

The following morning, also infusion #9 day, grandson Baby Ben arrived … 8 pounds, 7 ounces! Rick started his day at MD Anderson. After dropping off Jacob at daycare, I hurried to get my paws on our newly born Baby Ben. Such a handsome little guy! I am in serious love! Later in the day, I arrived at MDA to supervise Rick’s infusion. Afterward, we headed around the corner to see Baby Ben. I have an adorable photo of Pop-Pop wearing his hospital bracelet from MDA holding Baby Ben all tightly wrapped up with his hospital bracelet. All in all, an interesting infusion #9 we will never forget! Prayers and MDA made this magical moment possible!

Our kitchen remodel – week #3

I am liking what is going on in our kitchen during week #3. It is starting to get very interesting at the Frantz house. The week started with more floating, taping and some new texturing on a few walls.

Shaker-style cabinets were also delivered. Gilbert is Finishing Touches amazing cabinet maker. Geez … even unfinished, I can already tell our kitchen is going to exceed our expectations! Gilbert and crew spent two long days working their magic. During our planning meeting a week or so back, Rick and I asked for a few subtle changes to the cabinet detail to add a tad bit of character and he delivered!

Another amazing breakfast cooked on the grill … veggie egg white omelets and sausage! We even plugged in the toaster in the living room for some toast. Felt so much like camping out during our college days cooking on our propane Kangaroo Kitchen!

The week ended on Halloween with the painters coming back in to start preparing the cabinets for paint. Our very pregnant daughter, awesome son-in-law and little Jacob drove in from Houston to check out the construction zone and trick-or-treat in the neighborhood. What a fun night!

Three guesses what happens most of next week!