ladyamity

A sincere, heartfelt Thank You that's long overdue

ladyamity
9 years ago

It's been about four months, maybe five that I have been to this forum.

At the time, I had one nerve left and that one nerve was being severely compromised by everyone's wants and needs.

At the time, I felt my needs and wants were falling by the weighside and I didn't have a say in ANYTHING.

At the time I posted, I don't think anyone here on this forum could have guessed how low I was on the emotional/mental scale.

For background: In January of this year we had a main drain pipe rot UNDER our cement foundation near (where we thought) the kitchen sink.

After calling Homeowners Insurance and the proper fix-it repair people we were given the bad news that Homeowners does NOT cover 'Outgoing' water leaks. Homeowners would only cover "Incoming" water leaks.

Used up all our savings, cashed in our only CD and got all the breaking of cement trench (ended up going all through our kitchen and across our dining room) plumbing and electrical repairs paid for.

Then it was paycheck by paycheck to put the kitchen back together (and still is).

LOTS of Craigs List, Ebay and Estate Sales came into play.

Add to that: a husband that was doing all the work himself (I did the non-heavy jobs: mudding/sanding drywall, laying of slate floor, all the sanding, trim painting etc.) while he worked 5 1/2 days a week, both elderly parents living with me (they were beside themselves that they didn't have "Their" kitchen! lol) and then my Dad became very ill.

No sooner did we get my Dad back on his feet and Mr. Amity started having pains under his armpits. We figured it was from weeks and weeks of lifting the drywall....enough to cover a whole kitchen.

Nope. He ended up in the hospital.....99% clogged arteries and 3 stents later.

So we get him back on his feet and again my Dad got sick. We thought we were going to lose him....Sepsis for an 80+ year old man with diabetes is not a good thing.

Six weeks later, Dad is mobil, we can continue with the kitchen.

Mom gets sick and two weeks in hospital and 2 weeks in Convalescent hospital and she's on the mend.

Continue with kitchen, little by little.

Take another break to help with the Inland Empire/Temecula Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure.

During setup of booths, my sister had stomach pains so bad she doubled over and couldn't stand up.

Race to hospital where they kept her until the morning of the event.

She attended in a wheelchair as she alone was responsible for getting the company she works for involved with the event and she wouldn't have missed

it if she were on a gurney! lol

Two days after the event she/we get the news.....five years cancer free as of July 2010 but the cancer has metastisized. Terminal.

All of a sudden the kitchen was the furthest thing from my mind.

So very important for nine months...top of my list of priorities.

Now? Nah.

I just want it done!

SOOOOOOO, in all this, I wanted to make sure the people that helped, understood, listened, offered advice, gave me such beautiful words of encouragement on a forum that I was able to copy/print and keep them with me......I wanted to make sure you all knew how much all that meant/means to me.

If it weren't for all of you....your comments, kinds words, advice, opinions, I don't know that I would have been able to keep it together.....reading your words whenever I didn't think I could take any more, was a morale boost, an emotional uplifting, you could say your words to me on this forum at the time were a mental lifesaver!

Thank you to all of you who took the time for that post.....the same as those replies did then, they mean the world to me now and will continue to mean the world to me.

Am

P.S. Please overlook the many typos, monkey-finger blunders and bad grammar. I am between baths right now. :)

Comments (29)

  • oldhouse1

    It sounds as though you're stronger than you think and that you're the one who has had to keep it all together. My heart goes out to you and your family and especially your sister. May you all find the strength to face what lies ahead.

  • TxMarti

    Bless your heart, your family has been through the wringer. You are a strong woman. I am praying for all of you.

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  • remodelfla

    wishing you and your family many blessings and peace amity

  • katsmah

    You and your family are in my thoughts.

  • Buehl

    We are glad to be a sounding board or just a place to vent when needed...so please keep stopping by from time-to-time.

    My prayers for you and your family (and the various medical professionals).

  • kitchenaddict

    Hi am...

    I have tears in my eyes from reading your beautiful post. If there are any typos or poor grammar usage, I am unable to see them...

    Wishing you and your family all the best.

    KA:)

  • rhome410

    We are often reminded around here that kitchens are not what life is about. But, as you point out, it's nice to have this place to get away from the world and worry a little about fun things, as well as find great support. You are doing an awesome job withstanding all that has come at you. My prayers go with you for the support and strength you need, and I hope you have a less eventful path in the years ahead...and time to enjoy your new kitchen.

  • ebean

    you have been through it...and through it. my gentlest thoughts are with you and your family ...stay as strong as you can and enjoy every moment you can.

  • bmorepanic

    All the best wishes for you and your family. You are amazing.

  • bill_vincent

    All the best wishes for you and your family. You are amazing.

    I second that. Anyone who could go through all that, and still come out with their sanity somewhat intact, most certainly deserves my utmost respect. God Bless you.

    You know what they say-- that which does not kill us, only makes us stronger. Sounds like you've been on steroids for the soul!

  • jejvtr

    Amity

    I stopped dead in all my thoughts and concerns reading your thread - The irony of finding such a awe inspiring real life story on Kitchen Forum of all places..... Well it puts things... Life - in perspective.

    How precious and fleeting life is

    how tender is the hand that supports the frail, the sick, in-firmed.

    How blessed you are to be doing God's work, on earth -

    How blessed those that have had the good fortune of having you as a daughter, a wife, a sister have been. For you have made a moment, a day, a meal that seemed unfathomable all the more peaceful and palatable.

    I shall keep you and yours in my thoughts and prayers & be mindful when I feel like fretting over a curtain, a paint color, or high heels on my hardwood floors, how fleeting life truly is.

    God bless you & yours

  • rookie_2010

    Best wishes to you and your family, you're one strong lady.

  • flwrs_n_co

    I just can't seem to put into words what is in my heart for you and your family. You are a blessing to your family--your strength, compassion, and patience help keep everyone going. Please be sure to take care of yourself! My thoughts and prayers are with you, your sister, and your family as you go through this.

  • cat_mom

    You are in the hearts and thoughts of many here, you, your sister and your entire family. Sending hugs to you all.

  • motherof3sons

    Amity,

    Your post is very near and dear to me. We mirror one another in many ways - especially the aging parents. We too have had many challenges in 2010. If we were close to one another, I would invite you for a cup of tea, coffee or a bottle of wine. Hugs to you my dear.

  • dianalo

    I am so sorry for how this year has been treating both you and your family. My heart ached for you as I read your words. I wish I could hug you in person and convey my greatest compassion for you, but I will have to send a cyber hug to you instead and hope that you are being supported and hugged in the real world as well.
    You have been put through the toughest of times and have been able to keep putting one foot in front of the other. While no one wants to have to be strong, you should be proud of how you have been carrying on for those around you.
    Please come here and vent, complain, whine and whatever helps get you through the day. While we don't know each other, really, we do care, really.

  • formerlyflorantha

    You have reinforced what many of us have discovered, that the GW Kitchens forum is a surprisingly personal online cohort that has lots of special people on it, including you.

    Wishing you all the best that can be in the future. My sympathies and good wishes for your courageous family. I remember seeing how well you seemed to be dealing with that incredible horror show that was the rot problem and the subsequent problems that were happening in the background of your posts. We have all learned from you and profited by your frank openness and willingness to get up and keep trying.

    You go, girl!

  • marcy96

    I'm so sorry to hear all that you and your family have been through. I will keep you in my prayers.

  • ladyamity

    Oh My......

    I never expected this kind of response.
    Actually, I wasn't expecting any responses as my intent was purely to let all of you know, those of you who had followed/responded to my posts months ago, how special you were then and how meaningful your saved/printed words meant to me.
    The pure goodness of your hearts with your compassion in your typed word, your generosity with time to research information....all of it, everything you all do here for others, for each other, simply amazing.

    I owed you all a huge Thank You. I felt badly it was so late in coming. No response was necessary but you can be sure this post will be copied and saved in my "memories" folder in the chest at the foot of my bed. I am sure the months ahead I am going to be pulling it out and reading it often.

    I never expected to open this post today and find this.....I am....doesn't happen too often..... but I am at a loss for words.

    Lemme re-group...I shall return.

  • shelayne

    I remember your posts from before, Amity!

    I am so sorry for what you have gone through. What a trememdous amount of stress, and yet you are still so strong! God surely knew that your shoulders were strong enough to carry all this and with such grace!

    I want you to know that I am one more praying for you and your family. May God bless you and your loved ones and may you have comfort and peace.

  • Jon T

    Amity,

    I joined GW only recently, so I was unaware of your ordeal until reading this post on Tuesday. I have thought about you and have prayed for you and your family the past few days.

    I would also like to thank you for sharing. I'm sure that wasn't easy. Perspective in life is critical, and you sure helped to provide that to us.

    I wasn't sure how to reply to you, and almost didn't. Just know that for every reply you receive, there are probably 50 more people who are thinking about you and wishing you nothing but peace, love and kindness.

    God bless,
    Jon

  • ladyamity

    oldhouse1,
    What beautiful words you wrote....thank you.
    Strong? Goodness, Hubby remarked a few weeks ago that I should get an academy award for my acting. Acting strong. :)

    marti8a,
    Wringer, yes. Strong? Oh goodness....that's why I came here the first time....I needed something to shore me up. lol
    At that time, the kitchen was so overwhelming, I didn't know where to turn or who to talk to that would understand.
    The replies I received with that first post....that's what gave me the strength I needed.
    Thank you so much for your beutiful thoughts and prayers.

    remodelfla,
    Your Blessings for me and my family are so truly appreciated, thank you!

    katsmah,
    Sincerely, that means so much. Thank you.

    buehl,
    Your prayers for us and the medical professionals means more than you know.
    Yes, I've re-grouped and reading all the replies on this post got me focused again so you can be sure I will be here on a regular basis with.....what else? Kitchen questions. lol
    But I'm going to warn you in advance, I'm long-winded. Not in real life but seems I write novels when I post on these GW forums.
    After awhile you all are just going to be reading 'wah wah wah' much like Peanuts, the Teacher. *big smile*

    kitchenaddict,
    Oh gosh...noooo tears or you'll get me started all over again.
    Blessings to you with the beautiful soul......your words, priceless.

    rhome410,
    Your prayers mean more than you'll ever know...thank you.
    I am going to be getting back into the 'fun' things and I'll explain a bit more about that later.
    Yes, like you said.....A place to get away, like this forum, where people will understand that a misaligned cabinet IS a big thing and yet, in the grand scheme of things, it isn't. Know what I am trying to mean?
    Balance. Yea, that's it. Balance. Balance in life.

    ebean,
    Your words, your gentle thoughts came through loud and clear and mean so very much.....Thank you!

    bmorepanic,
    Oh, not amazing. Otherwise I wouldn't be on this forum with my tales of woe. But thank you so much for thinking so. Your wishes mean so much....bless you!

    bill_vincent,
    Mr. Vincent *grin*, you were there for me during our closet-sized bathroom renovation and here you are now....means so very much.
    I read the last line of your post and a strange sound came out of my mouth. I think it was a snort. The good kind of snort. The kind that comes out when you least expect that you are about to laugh out loud......felt good!
    You are what my hubby calls "A REAL Man".

    jejvtr,
    Your words, your whole post.....really penetrated my soul.
    You are so right about putting life in perspective.
    One day I am fretting over a misaligned cabinet and the next day it all seemed so piddly. In one day I went from frazzled kitchen mode to 'who cares!" mode.
    I am desperately needing to find balance.
    I got a good start on the balance yesterday....right here, reading these responses.
    Your post means so much...Thank you.

    rookie_2010 ,
    Oh Rookiie, I wish I was strong but thank you for saying so.
    Your Best Wishes mean so much...thank you!

    flwrs_n_co,
    Your thoughts and prayers mean so much, more than you know.
    I wish I was good at all those things you listed....I'm working on it. Practice makes perfect, right? :)

    cat_mom,
    That hug feels good....I needed that. :)
    Thank you so much for your beautiful post.

    motherof3sons,
    Oh Mothero3Sond, I am sooo sorry to hear you are going through trials and challenges too! I hope things calm down a bit for you, soon!
    I would LOVE to sit face to face over a cuppa with someone that has a similar life situation.....you!
    I've always found that sharing ideas, tips or just venting is so good for what ails ya.
    I did that years ago with like-minded neighbors when we were all raising our kids. It sure did help get us all through those rough patches....thumb sucking, bed wetting, temper tantrums, back-talking, homework not getting done, etc.
    Sometimes listening and helping out with the problems of someone else helps keep your mind off your own.
    So if ever you need to talk, to vent, to unload, feel free to email me via GW's email system.
    And again, I SO hope things calm down for you soon.
    Sending you Good Thoughts and positive vibes!

    dianalo,
    That cyber hug felt so good...thank you!
    I hadn't thought of it that way..."putting one foot in front of the other"....Yea, I guess that's what I've been doing all along but I just didn't have a name for it....I appreciate that so much, more than you know.

    florantha,
    Boy, did you ever hit the proverbial nail on the head!
    "the GW Kitchens forum is a surprisingly personal online cohort that has lots of special people on it..."
    No truer words!
    I've mentioned my parents on other posts in other forums here on GW. I've mentioned them being ill a few times, I remeber coming to GW looking for support when my parents moved in.....I KNEW it would be an adjustment, just never realized how HARD an adjustment it would be, not only to me but for my hubby and my returned-home-adult-kids.
    But to completely open up about the whole kitchen saga, the illnesses, my emotions?? Heck, I don't know what drove me here in the first place but whatever it was, I am now so very fortunate to have people to 'talk' to that understand not just the stress of not having a kitchen for nine months, but understand other trials that happen in life...and are compassionate and really take the time to 'listen'. I am soooo very blessed to have found you all!

    marcy96,
    Your prayers mean so very much to me, more than you know...thank you!

    shelayne,
    Yes, that was me about 5 months ago, coming to Kitchen Forum when I was at the end of my rope.
    Then more stuff happened and I never got back to GW at all.
    Then things fell into a pattern that allowed me a little time for me and I realized I had never updated this forum, these wonderful folks who had taken the time to respond to those first postings of mine.
    Those posts got me through!
    I am really not liking when I read "Oh, it's just a forum, it's ONLY a message board".
    NO.....for some of us, even accidentally, it can become so much more than that.
    Your post, your prayers...all mean so much. Thank you.

    itsnotrocketscience,
    "Perspecive in life" Boy, I sure learned that one quickly....like a hammer over the head. :)
    If you didn't know how to reply, you faked it well because your post is beautiful and I will cherish your words.
    Compared to others, I am relatively new, also.
    I lurked for a couple years and then finally signed up when there what a question on the Home Decor Forum that nobody had answered and it was about "budget decorating" and that's something I know oh-so-very-much-about lol so I registered to respond to that question and then asked one of my own. Got so many neat, helpful replies, I stuck around.
    So, Welcome to the Forum Itsnotrocketscience (such a fun name!) and I hope we run into each other again really soon!

    ----------------------

    I read these responses yesterday. Had to regroup. Totally pulled myself away from my kitchen stuff. Called my Sis and we had a nice, long talk and even laughed quite a bit.

    She's just 50, so it took me a bit to get to the root of my anger? if that's what it is.
    But 50....too young, her young adult kids still need her.
    I am very, Very angry about that.
    And of course, I am constantly asking myself "Why?"

    But talking with her yesterday, we agreed...well, she made me agree....that "WE" are not going to put our life on hold just because she's not feeling well (that's what she calls it...not feeling well).
    Not exact wording but her attiude is .... Hey, I am not in a casket yet so why the sad faces? Let's live each day for what it is. Plenty of time to be sad later. Today, today we visit, chat, gossip, talk about our kids, laugh and go on with life.

    Okie Dokie. I will respect her wishes.
    But I did take all day yesterday to regroup and I stayed completely out of the kitchen.

    Today I will go in there (after Mom is done doing whatever she is doing in there...have no idea but I hear pots and pans clanging. lol) and with a fresh start, fresh attitude, I will be back here with the photo album with new pics added and PLENTY OF QUESTIONS...so don't say I didn't warn ya all! LOL

    HUGS TO EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU!

    Am

    p.s. No, I am not going to take the time to preview so you are seeing this post warts and all.....gotta get the furbabies fed. :)

  • doonie

    Amity,

    I am sending love and prayers your way....I know countless others are too.

    doonie

  • lascatx

    Amity, I started reading this thread with surprise and amazement. Your name is familiar, but I had no idea what you have been dealing with. Not a full plate -- rather a platter in each hand running over! How many times I wish that "Someone" didn't have such great faith in me to handle all that was coming my way -- and then look at you! You are strong, but even the strongest need support around them -- to vent, to get a hug, to contrast and compare -- and that sharing, supporting and being supported makes you stronger.

    Your regroup comment reminded me of when we learned my mom had Alzheimer's. I had to regroup too -- and you may need to from time to time. I got very angry and cried and sobbed and hit my pillow and cried some more. And that let me go on. So it's good that you gave yourself that. Acknowledge the anger and the unfairness, and then get and give the most you can out of the time you have with your sister. I learned when my grandmother had terminal cancer that time is a gift and it is up to you to make it what you want.

    When your kitchen is done and life around you is more settled, I hope the kitchen will be a reflection of all the times - the people dear enough to you to share you kitchen and cups of coffee in it, the hugs, the laughter, the tears and bigger hugs, the love that holds a family together and you are at the center of it all. Let the memories, the love live on with you and around you in the heart of your home. ((( )))

  • ladyamity

    Doonie,
    Thank you so very much. That means So much to me.
    When I typed up the OP it was to praise all the wonderful people on this forum for the support and words of encouragement they gave me months ago.
    Everyone here deserves praise, kudos, and huge 'Thank yous' for the way they responded not only to me, but the way they respond to everyone who comes here during a kitchen remodel and are into 'crisis' mode.
    Instead I get words of encouragement, advice and shoulders to lean on and that is worth more than the most expensive of kitchen renos IMHO.
    Again, thank you!


    lascatx,
    "How many times I wish that "Someone" didn't have such great faith in me to handle all that was coming my way"
    OMG, you said it all right there!

    I was amusing myself a couple weeks ago...talking to myself.
    I said "If this is some kind of a 'test', I am flunking out miserably".
    I had to chuckle to myself because I never did very well in school either. lol
    You are so very right.....I need to find a way to acknowledge the anger and the unfairness of it all.
    You wrote that the kitchen, when things are more settled, should be a reflection of the good times, people near and dear to me.
    Right now I should be enjoying all the little things in this new kitchen area that I've never had before but instead, I am hating the kitchen. Well, not hating the kitchen exactly. I think it's hating what the kitchen represents/has represented all these months.
    But a good cry on the shoulders of all you fantastic folks here....and I can honestly say I noticed this weekend, I think I've turned the corner.
    Maybe it's because the kitchen is almost done or maybe a different mindset after reading what everyone has written, maybe both. Even hubby noticed and mentioned a difference in me...and that's a very good thing. :)
    Your Mom, your Grandma.....I am sooo sorry, so very sorry; for them and for You.
    Thank you, sincerely, Thank YOU!
    -------------------------

    Folks, I smiled so much yesterday.
    We actually got the shelves up over the stove and the Dutch ovens are no longer lined up along the counters....Yippeeee Skippeeee!
    I know, I know....that sounds like such a trivial thing; shelves above the stove, but not having to shuffle Dutch Ovens around from one area to another just to make toast is a huge thing here. lol

    We've still got tons of little stuff to do.....caulking, touch-up paint, sanding some rough edges here and there, filling in screw and nail holes in the cabs, finish making the little door to the inside-drop mail slot and the biggest little thing: finding places for 'stuff'.....mine and Mom's 'stuff'.
    I want to make sure my Mom's things are displayed and mine too but I don't want the kitchen to look like you've just walked into a little shop called "Eclectics R Us".
    The only way I know how to decorate is eclectic style so that's not the problem. I just need to make sure I display or not, without hurting feelings. :)

    In any case, I'll be back later today with Pics and a few questions about no backsplash.

    Everyone, Enjoy your Monday!

    Am

  • lascatx

    Cancer sucks and bad drain lines make you wonder about the wisdom of cement slabs (we found out that a section of the drain line from our master bath had apparently never been connected -- almost 20 years after the house was built and we had the pleasure of trying to find the problem and go through the slab to fix it). But your kitchen didn't cause either.

    I wrote about your kitchen with this feeling that a person in your situation could easily wind up hating everything they had just done because they would look at the house and kitchen and think of all the hard times. I was wondering about what I was saying and whether you already hated the kitchen. I decided I needed to say it even if your were -- and maybe especially if you were.

    Your kitchen didn't cause any of this. It's just another part of the story, another survivor in the making. It may have left you exhausted, but you may find that it has given you something else to think about and put your energy into. Right now, that might sound like a drain and something negative, but imagine if you had that energy and it was all sucked up by the illnesses and worries without anything to give you an outlet or to ground you. You could easily be just as tired, just as drained, and have nothing but unhappiness to show for it.

    Instead, you may find that your kitchen is a reflection of you (something central to all that is going on, not feeling all that strong, but pulling things back together again) and what matters to you -- your family and a place in your home to nourish your bodies and your souls. Or maybe it's having a reason to come back here and share the concerns and the frustration with folks who aren't already knee-deep in it so you can find out you are not alone, that you are stronger than you think and that reaching out will help you get through the rest of your mission. Maybe the work caused you to discover Mr Amity's clogged arteries at a time and in a way that prevented a massive heart attack so that he'll be with you to get through all of this and many years beyond. Maybe it's just good therapy to bang and drill, sand and brush -- something to take out frustrations on and then slow down and focus on other details with.

    Whatever it may prove to be, your kitchen will always be there and will be waiting for you and those you love to help you share good times and memories and find comfort and sustenance when you need it. But in the end, it's a shell and a set of tools -- like a memory box or a scrapbook. What you put in it and what you pull out of it is, in the end, up to you.

    Hope you have a great Monday. Sounds like you'll be done in time to relax and enjoy the holidays. Well, as much as any of us is ever finished with anything in a house.

    Hang in there.


  • ladyamity

    lascatx,

    Get out of my head! LOL
    Some of the things you wrote...wow, just wow.


    THIS is what I will always remember: "But in the end, it's a shell and a set of tools -- like a memory box or a scrapbook. What you put in it and what you pull out of it is, in the end, up to you."

    Couldn't find this post and when I did, didn't know the netiquette about bringing up a post that is almost in the archives.
    But said heck with it as I wanted to make sure you knew that I read your post....really, really read your post, and to tell you Thank you.

    Today I am painting the other side (outside) of the back door in the kitchen. When the door is open the outside shows from two rooms and it's really icky.
    Over 30+ years I've always hated painting doors. This time I'm actually looking forward to it! :)

  • westsider40

    Oh Amity, I just want to say that there are no words to express my compassion and caring and that it is absolutely CRAPOLA that all this bad happened. I am glad that Mr. Amity's cardiac problem was discovered and fixed.

    It is a wonderful thing that you have a loving home to shelter your parents and children.

    And you still have a sense of humor-saying that parents were a tad gripey that 'their' kitchen was down. Your down kitchen has been supplying the nourishment and pleasure for your family all during this time-so we think that your kitchen, whether finished to your level of satisfaction or not, is serving it's function very well. That's what kitchens do-supply nourishment and pleasure.

  • lascatx

    I figured you were busy, but it is good to hear from you. I'm surprised the thread was almost tot he archives. Doesn't take long, does it?

    Sometimes I'm unsure about the netiquette (did you just coin a new word?) of saying things or how they will be received too. The last thing you want to do when someone is having a rough time is to say the wrong thing, or a right thing received in the wrong way as the internet makes so easy to do, and leave it hanging.

    Sounds like you have some renewed energy. Enjoy it and the things it brings your way. Enjoy every moment of the coming holidays. Enjoy memories together and make some new ones. ((( )))

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