Saturday, March 16, 2013

Kitchen Remodel, Week Three: Black & White and a Poetic Fritatta

The kitchen looks like it did last week, but with wall insulation and little metal boxes where light switches and outlets will go.

Meanwhile, we made ourselves crazy trying to choose black counter tops and white subway tiles. This is a white tile:

They all look alike. Until you hold them up to the Italian tile backsplash I've had stashed away in a kitchen-remodel hope chest for all these years.  Then I see that there are at least 37 shades of "white" tile -- none of which match the Italian backsplash.

Black counter tops are equally frustrating.  There are only so many slabs of soapstone in warehouses in Portland at a given point in time. I've looked at them all.  The good ones are on hold for other people.  The available ones have what looks like a map of the Columbia River watershed across the middle. Many aren't black, they are green.  Too little veining, too much veining, weird blotches.  None match the picture in my brain.

As with kitchen remodels, as with life.  You learn not to sacrifice the good in quest for the perfect.  No one but me will see that the tiles are off slightly and we'll hide the weird blotch in the soapstone under the toaster. Call it good.

In the midst of these petty frustrations, my dear friend Kirsten Rian was a saving angel.  She appeared on our porch with a care basket overflowing with goodness -- a pre-made salad, fresh bread, wine, homemade butternut squash soup, and an over-sized, over-stuffed frittata with roasted peppers, kale, smoked salmon, and goat cheese on a layer of thin-sliced potatoes.

Blessings on her head! Kirsten is an incredible poet, artist, musician, professor, and curator, and on top of it all she can mix up the best frittata I've ever eaten. I love this woman!



  1. Having been through a kitchen remodel myself, I can definitely relate to your angst over selecting countertops and backsplash tiles. Luckily, we have a huge warehouse not far from us with gazillions of countertops to choose from (Pental in Fife, WA). Of course, that makes it harder, doesn't it? Too many options! Somehow, it all came out just the way we wanted, and I'm sure yours will too.
    Kudos to your friend for such a thoughtful care basket.

  2. That's a great friend! The basket sounds yummy.

  3. "You learn not to sacrifice the good for the perfect"- I like that. And you have a wonderful friend!

  4. Remodeling is so frustrating but you're right - no one will see the imperfections but you. Kirsten is a terrific friend!

  5. I can't imagine living without a kitchen! It's so nice to have wonderful friends, isn't it?

  6. I went through a kitchen remodel a few years ago - it's amazing how many shades of white and black there are! Your friend was very thoughtful to bring food!

  7. I know how frustrating it can be to search for perfect. What a fantastic friend!

  8. Good luck surviving your kitchen remodel! I can think of no other experience that tests a relationship more (other than putting IKEA furniture together).


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