When we moved into our home in 2018, I knew I would eventually want to make some updates to our kitchen, which I believe had its last major renovation in the early 1990s. I posted about some of my favorite – and least favorite – things about the space here.

The pandemic put some of our plans on the back burner, but things got ramped up again in August when we finally hired a cabinet painter and ordered new countertops. The counters also caused a bit of a spiral of new things we needed: built in cooktop, sink, faucet, and downdraft vent.

We started with the counters. I was hoping to find a matte/honed black stone, similar to soapstone, but without the same price tag and upkeep! We considered absolute black granite but actually found a different option that was priced even better called black pearl. It comes with one side already honed and one side polished, and the honed side gave us the exact natural matte stone look we were hoping for! The granite had some expected color variations but is quite muted compared to other granite options.

(Photo from my shopping trip)
Counters installed – no paint yet. Very … honey wood in there 🙂

I chose a deep white single basin porcelain sink and we got a new induction cooktop and downdraft fan for the peninsula.

The thing I was most excited about was cabinets and I am so pleased with how they turned out. We used a local professional who sprays a factory finish and she did an amazing job. The paint she used was color matched to Benjamin Moore Icicle. We got new cabinet drawer cup pull hardware in a brushed nickel and I “splurged” (for me) on a pretty Kohler faucet in polished nickel.

Paint done. Last thing to do is the backsplash.

In a twist of fate, right at the tail end of the kitchen project, I was offered a job opportunity on the East Coast where Pete is from. After much deliberation, we decided to dive in and move halfway across the country. I am sad that we had to move out of our home so soon—I really anticipated a longer time here and wanted to enjoy our updates and continue working on our project list. Not to mention my family lives in Illinois and I have never lived more than a few hours away from them.

A blessing and a curse for us was the current housing market which is just wild right now. We listed our house at 8am on a Monday and by end of day we had around 5 offers, most over asking. The blessing: were able to close on our house a month after listing it. The curse: moving to a state with a severe shortage of housing. We moved in with Pete’s parents (me 24 weeks pregnant) on New Years Eve. We immediately began the housing search and over the course of over three months, put in EIGHT offers on homes. Maybe at a different time I will share some of the houses we fell in love with (or sometimes—liked “enough”) and lost out on (womp womp). However we were successful on our eighth and final offer. I say final in the literal sense, since we went under contract, but also, I was 9 months pregnant and needed to take some time off from house hunting! Our realtor and lender were a dream team to get us closed within 2.5 weeks after going under contract and that was a good thing because I had our second baby a week after that! Nothing like gambling with borrowed time 🙂

So, for now a little peek at our new house in New Hampshire. Now that we have owned it for two months, we’ve already made a few changes to the inside to make it more livable for our family, and the rest of our process to make it our own will come with time.

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