Archives 2023

Prestige Appliances

My biggest project for the spring is upgrading all of the major kitchen appliances. Almost all of the existing appliances were from 2013 when I bought the house, and so they were coming up for replacement anyway. My goal was to move into the Sub Zero / Wolf / Cove family, and so that’s what I did. I have a french door Sub Zero refrigerator ordered, along with a Wolf induction range and a Cove dishwasher. Originally I wanted to get a Wolf LP gas range, but my sales rep successfully convinced me to go with an induction range instead. It’s easier to clean, and doesn’t have the same drawbacks as electric.

I also decided to keep my existing Kitchenaid double oven and replace my Samsung microwave with a matching Kitchenaid microwave. That will leave me with a Sub Zero family refrigerator, range, and dishwasher, along with a Kitchenaid family double oven and microwave. In the future, I may upgrade the oven and microwave but given the life left in the Kitchenaid it was hard to justify throwing away an extra $10k on a new oven.

The only challenge I encountered with ordering the appliances involved the refrigerator. While the others would be available within 3-4 months, I was told that the wait time for the refrigerator would be approximately 15 months. That was hard to stomach for a $14k appliance, so I decided to explore other options. Sub Zero restricts their dealers to a 150 mile delivery radius, so I couldn’t look at larger markets like New York City or Los Angeles. I could, however, look at the northern suburbs of Chicago. I was able to find an Illinois dealer that was literally 149 miles from my house that had a delivery slot available for April!

With that in mind, I put in an order and then ordered the other appliances from my local dealer.

The very last step prior to installation was to source trim that matched my existing cabinetry. I was able to bring a piece of cabinetry left over from the last kitchen remodel and match the wood and stain at Menards, and have an order in for several pieces of trim that will cover the gap at the top of the molding when the new, much taller refrigerator is installed and the cabinets above the current refrigerator are removed:

Everything is currently slated to be delivered in April and May, so it will be exciting to see the transformed kitchen take shape!

Further Card Organization

As I’ve continued to grow my football card collection, I’ve had to expand my storage and display space. Around this time last year, I converted two drawers of an IKEA drawer set to store cards in top loaders or graded slabs. This January, I converted the remaining drawers in the two drawer sets that are currently in the library, significantly expanding my storage capacity.

My wife’s new cat Tilly attempted to help, but only succeeded in getting in the way.

I also expanded the number of display shelves that I have in the library:

As I continue to collect more cards and sports memorabilia, I’ll need to keep getting more creative to find storage space. That said, this latest project has given me enough space to last the next several years.

Ceiling Fan Update

When I originally worked with my interior designer on the master bedroom, one item that I neglected to finish was upgrading the old ceiling fan to something that better fit the design style. I finally got around to that recently, and installed a new wifi-enabled smart ceiling fan that really nicely integrates with Amazon Alexa, and also looks excellent. Wiring the fan was an adventure, since I had to first wire in the wifi transceiver.

Once the wiring was done, I installed the rest of the fan.

Once the fan was connected to Alexa, along with the table lamps on either side of the bed, the look of the bedroom was transformed!

New Range Rover

One of my birthday presents to myself this past January was upgrading the old Range Rover Sport into a new Range Rover Supercharged. It’s an unbelievably well engineered vehicle with a gorgeous interior and a fabulously powerful engine.

The current fleet consists of a Bentley Flying Spur W12, Porsche Cayman S, Mercedes SL, Range Rover Supercharged, and an F250. Not bad, in my opinion!

TV Upgrades

It’s been awhile since my last post… Once fall hit, I took a short break from home projects after all of the pool craziness from last summer. However, since the new year I’ve been busy. One small project involved a pair of TV upgrades with very different circumstances. First, I finally ordered a four seasons TV for the hot tub area and installed it, along with an outdoor sound bar.

It has excellent picture quality and sound, and has made winter mornings watching English football a lot of fun!

When buying that TV from Best Buy, I noticed how cheap 85 inch TV’s have become, and I got the itch to upgrade the main living room TV.

The previous TV had been in a TV hutch, which looked nice but limited the TV in size to around 55 inches. For the new TV, we wanted to go with a TV console that had a built in fireplace insert, and was more minimalist than the previous hutch. My wife found this option, which fits with the rest of our furniture in the living room really nicely:

Once the furniture was selected and ordered, I installed the TV. It took two people to hang it, which was a first for me with a modern flatscreen TV. The sheer size of it makes it pretty impossible for one person to manage. Once on the wall, it dominated the living room space in a good way.

After hiding the wires, it looks really clean even with the old console in place.

After installing the two new TVs, there were a few cleanup tasks to perform. First, I moved the previous living room TV up to the master bedroom.

I also did some work to fix the broken TV lift in the three season room, converting it from a motorized lift (which had been nothing but trouble despite multiple replaced units) to a manual lift with a latch to hold the lifted TV in place.

All of these minor upgrades have had a pretty dramatic impact on the house’s TV landscape!