But a redo was not in the budget. Still, I took my sister-in-law's advice and shopped around on Craigslist to see if I could find a pre-used kitchen that we could affordably re-purpose. A few days later I found one. For $1,900 we could get a kitchen with granite countertops and almost enough cabinets, albeit in a different layout than our kitchen, with most appliances included. Sold.
A few weeks later we had moved those heavy slabs of granite into our garage, stowed the cabinets in every possible corner of house and garage, and the kitchen looked like this. It turned out the walls needed to be completely replaced because of that old paint-over-wallpaper trick, so the project turned slightly larger than anticipated. Although it was easier to move plumbing and electrical with the walls completely gone, so there was that.
. . . countless trips to all the local hardware stores . . . and several thousand dollars later (all work done by my talented husband, with a little help from his handy parents . . . I just "supervised" and tried to keep our home life intact), we present to you the Craigslist kitchen.
The backsplash was not originally intended to have those white tiles interspersed, but they gave us two boxes of grey tiles and one of white, and rather than drive all the way back to Bollingbrook to replace them, we just made it work. I think I actually prefer it with the white in there.