The World’s Ugliest Kitchen Award Goes To


Seriously, this is one ugly ass kitchen. But we’ll get to that in a minute. There is so much more, you guys. So much.

We’ve been living in the new house for 10 days now. We closed a week ago last Friday and the transition had a bump or two. If we can agree the new definition of “bump” is now “clusterfuck”.

Let’s agree, moving is stressful enough on it’s own.

We had issues with movers canceling on us at the last minute which set the tone. I can’t tell you how grateful I am for Craigslist in getting last minute movers and house cleaning service. I am also grateful we weren’t murdered by a serial killer who gets his victims from Craigslist. Or her. I mean, it could be a woman serial killer, but history dictates they probably wouldn’t be female.

Anyway, we closed early Friday afternoon and the seller told us that she hadn’t been able to get all her stuff out, but that she would be back later in the afternoon to finish up.

While we were still closing, Joey had gone ahead to take the kitties over. He called while we were signing papers and let me know the house was basically full. And disgusting.

That was a difficult conversation to have while the seller sat right across from me.

Joey: Mom, this is so fucking gross.

Me: Okay, well, we’ll deal with it later. How fucking gross? Really? 

Joey: You don’t understand the situation. There is shit in every room.

Me: Actual? Please, please, please. No actual shit. 

Joey: No, mom. Not actual shit. But there is stuff in every room. Even furniture. And everything is dirty. Everything. It smells.

Me: Okay, sweetheart. Thanks for letting me know, we’ll be done soon. Fucking hell. Fuckity fuck. 

Then, I finished signing papers while sweat dripped down my back. I had thought she had a few boxes to pick up. But no.

I underestimated the situation.

I drove the 20 foot moving van to our new house. Randy and I immediately got separated after we closed on the new place. He didn’t have his phone, so no GPS and he wasn’t familiar with the area. I wished him luck and headed south.

You can only park on one side of the street at our new house. Joey didn’t know that and I forgot to tell him, so he and his buddy were both parked illegally for about an hour. I had them move their cars, but that didn’t stop one of my new neighbors from calling the police. So, we had the police called on us before we set foot in the house.

Also, I wrecked the moving van when we were returning it. Just a little. You could barely even notice. Also, I paid extra for the insurance. It was $14 well spent.

When we arrived, the closets were filled with clothes. The pantry was full. The bathroom cabinets and drawers were full. There were dishes in the sink and dishwasher.

Oh, and there was a cat. Sam.

Sam is an independent indoor/outdoor cat. The seller hadn’t been able to coax him into a carrier as of closing. She was, however, able to at least get her two dogs from the house.

I spent the whole first night, pacing through the house muttering “it’s so filthy” over and over.

Also, most of our furniture was in a pod and we had to wait three days before it arrived.

We just had our mattress on the floor of what is now our office. The floors and walls were fur lined. There were dust bunnies so large and dense that they were actually aggressive. Alfie the kitty slayed a few of them. So, we spent 3 nights sleeping with our heads about a foot above a filthy floor. It was as bad as camping.

I found a cleaning lady on Craigslist who was willing to come in on a Saturday. I will be lighting candles in her honor for the next year.

She worked for 10 hours and in that time was only able to complete the bathroom, our bedroom, and most of the kitchen. I worked on the rest of the house, so it was at least tolerable after 48 hours.

I got the most wonderful phone call the Sunday after we moved in.

Mountain girl and the Bass player were scheduled to arrive the following Thursday for a short visit, but she wanted to know if we wanted them to come Tuesday so they could help out. We so enjoyed the extended visit. And this was novel. We go to their house, not the other way around.

We caught Sam before Mountain girl and the Bass player arrived, which was awesome. I felt like a heel. He really wanted in. He would sit at the backdoor and meow. Once, he was in the front window and tentatively raised his paw to me like “oh, hey, I sort of live here, could I come in for a minute?” I can’t tell you how happy we were when Sam was safely taken to his new home. We were all suffering from kitty guilt.

You guys, Mountain girl cleaned and organized the entire basement. She kept up on the upstairs cleaning as well.

The Bass player hung curtain rods and hauled boxes or trash when they needed hauling. It was glorious.

If the cleaning girl gets a candle lit for a year, then Mountain girl and the Bass player have every fire ever built in the fire pit in the backyard named in their honor.

It wasn’t all work and no play. Joey made margaritas and Mountain girl found a use for the used limes.

Also, after a few drinks, Mountain girl and I made a video so you could see the world’s ugliest kitchen for yourself.

After Mountain girl and the Bass player left, Randy and I put together an Ikea TV stand. We’re still on speaking terms. Also, we are avoiding the larger 8 drawer dresser that needs assembling.

I go back to work tomorrow.

I have clothes for tomorrow. I have no idea if I’ll get to my clothes situation by Monday evening or if I’m going to the local Goodwill and buying a small interim wardrobe.

Oh, yeah.

Yesterday, I looked out the dining room window and there was a possum head in the side yard.

That’s considered good luck, right? Finding a severed animal head in your yard just after moving in?

What the fuck tears possum heads off? I am hoping the culprit is at least not human.

Next on my list: have those goddamn counter tops smashed to bits.

On the zillion to one chance the person who owned this house reads this post: You are a lovely person and I know you did the best you could. Also, can we agree the counters were a terrible idea?





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  • Holy hell, that is nasty. The little Dutch girl is carrying a vomit bucket. One word: “sledgehammer”. You can’t fix the cracked tile–I recommend tearing it all out and putting in something fresh and non-e-coli!

    • THAT is the first order of business. I have someone coming in tomorrow. The bathroom is wretched as well. All in all, though, it’s a great house. Cosmetic shit aside.

  • Whoo boy! That kitchen tile. Yes yes yes to the resmashing. As an artist type i have some unique choices around the house and i am going to change that before listing. MG rocks “I’m still contemplating the yellowness. ” LOL

    • Oh, we had to cover up all our quirks in the old house. That isn’t stopping me from new quirks in the new one. Royal purple hall ceiling, coming up!

  • I agree it is a heinous kitchen. That said my sister’s kitchen is much, much worse, and she has lived in her house for over 20 years, and it just gets worse. She has plenty of $$, but doesn’t see why everyone says it’s so awful. Trust me on this, it’s uglier than yours. The saving grace is the lighting is so bad you can hardly see how bad it is.
    BTW the little Dutch tiles are the nicest thing in there, that and the hooch.
    Best of luck in your new home.

  • First of all, congrats!

    The kitchen counter has a certain charm about it. I’m sure it looks fine with the possum head.

    Seriously, you need stuff like that so that years down the road, you can say, “Hey, do you remember the kitchen counter that was in here when we moved in and how we had to cat sit for a couple days before the old owners got all their stuff out and then how they never took their severed possum head with them?”

  • If you can house us Thursday we can leave Haley’s a little early and come help in the house. If not (we understand) we will be there Friday to help out. We got your back ;).

  • Oh No! Sounds a lot like the day we moved to our farmhouse. 17 below zero, took a jig saw to the staircase case ceiling to get beds upstairs, and a massive mouse infestation. Our first night in our paradise house was spent on the couches pushed together as a bed, listening to the mice enjoying the garbage and crying. Moving is NOT for wussies! Now I have to go watch your ugly kitchen video so I can laugh with you.

  • Noooooooo! What the hell was that DIY person thinking? That counter top is an invitation to the Emergency Room! Not to mention lacerated fingers and hands…..culture that surface….E-coli and Staph for certain! HGTV wants to give you a remodel…. you win!

    • Yeah..the only GOOD thing is there is not much counter space. haha. Which has it’s drawbacks. But all we’ve done is order out since we moved in, so counter space isn’t much needed yet.

  • I laughed more than I have in days. Alcohol makes everything better. We’ve made some questionable choices here at Happy Acres, but we have the luxury of knowing everything is going to be bulldozed within a week of closing. Also, I have frogs in the sink.

  • I shouldn’t laugh, but our house was so filthy when we bought it, we waited 4 weeks to move in so we could clean it while it was empty. Lucky we had somewhere to stay.
    At least we didn’t have murderous countertops and decapitations to deal with…

  • According to the Google, the most likely culprit in the beheading of the possum is a raccoon or an owl. There were a surprising number of results (519,000) for the search “possum head in yard”, so there is that.
    We tiled the kitchen counters ourselves (read that our friend Jack did it) at Fort Apache, the place we stayed behind the MacArthur BART station in 1989/1990 at the height of the crack epidemic. It was hideous and less than sanitary, and required a ridiculous amount of cleaning that didn’t keep two of our housemates from getting intestinal parasites, but it bows down before your counter.
    I’m glad Sam made it safely to his new digs, cats don’t always do well with moves.
    It’s good to hear from you again, I’ve been wondering how you were doing. Congratulations on your new house, and may it become the home you want it to be very soon.

  • Wow. It’s as if when the previous owners moved in, they found that Dutch-girl tile border in place (and probably the blue ceiling), didn’t like it, but didn’t want to retile, so they made a shit-show of tiling the counter… including a yellow shade so they could paint the cabinet doors yellow.

    I remember when the woman moved out of the cottage behind mine and our landlord came to prep it for showing to new tenants. He called me in from my cottage to show me the furry floors and walls. And the furniture left behind.

    Glad you got into your new place, though!

    • Me too!! We just have a lot of work to do, but I’m kind of pumped about it. I want to get the unpacking phase over with. And the assembling furniture phase. I hate that part.

  • All this time I’ve been saying, “How ugly could that kitchen be?” and holy shit that’s, I’m sorry, that’s like a Spinal Tap kitchen–“You ask, how much more ugly could it be? And the answer is none.” Although I do really enjoy how simpatico you and Mountain Girl are.
    And on the bright side think of how much satisfaction you’ll feel in taking a sledgehammer to that little Dutch girl.

    • Haha..we are glazing right over top of her. All the tile will be white as of Sept 20. That is the SOONEST I could get this work done. I’m bummed.

      And yes, Mountain girl and I are good together. 🙂

  • Geez, I thought my rental kitchen’s cracked earth texture floor tiles were unfortunate, but your new counters have ’em beat.


  • Well-confess that I like the Dutch tiles…yeah I know…and sorry to say this but if kitty was really that attached to the house, he may be back…a friends cat just kept going back to her old house, crossing really busy streets, so rather than waiting for him to get smushed, she found someone in the neighborhood to take care of him…But those countertops! Glad you are moved and working your way towards home again.

    • I love the smashing sounds!! Also, pretty sure Randy has a sledge hammer. And he’s not doing that job because he would end up breaking up the whole kitchen. haha

  • That was a great adventure!
    I am a Dutch(older) girl, But those tiles… ugly. Anyway the images are very old fashioned Dutch for sure, spooky and boring at the same time. Get those out as soon as possible.
    Have an anxious lot of fun in your new house, and a hell of a lot inspirational moments.

  • Yikes you do win. In total, the Dutch girl tiles are sweet but the counter has to go as does the floor. I inherited a duplex and the tenant brick and mortared a backsplash and in the process dropped something on the floor and cracks that we had to take up. I feel for you. Some things should only be sold to professionals! Best of luck!!

  • OMG! It took a year of clearing out shit before the house we bought went on the market. The previous owner was a hoarder and she filled every nook and cranny with some kind of junk. She now lives in a smaller house behind us and that one is crammed! We came in and started ripping shit out and refinishing, etc. It was a process but, so worth every hour and every penny! Once you make it your own you will LOVE IT!
    Good luck!

  • I just need to know one thing…did you buy this sight unseen…and what did the houses you didn’t buy look like….ok, thats two things…but they kinda go together… I hope you get it all fixed up like you want it…and thank goodness for Craigslist! Hugs to you….

  • That cinches it. We’re never moving.
    Oh, and Sam would be our cat now. You guys are better than us lol.
    I’m glad you’re moved in!

    • We just couldn’t. He’s an indoor/outdoor cat and my cats would have FREAKED OUT. My cats are strictly indoor. I felt terrible, though. I’m just glad he’s at his new home. And I hope he stays there.

      • I’m kidding 🙂 I would have wanted to steal the cat, but I was raised Catholic…and never outgrew the guilt. And I’m glad he’s at his new home with his people. I sort of won’t be surprised if he doesn’t show up again just to warn you if you live close enough until he gets used to the new place.

  • Was the previous owner planning on you doing the packing and cleaning for her? She knew the closing date – I can understand having a few last minute details to work out, but not a house full of stuff! Did she at least apologize for the incredible inconvenience? And yeah, Shani, the cat would be ours too. I always like the imaginative cartoon that lifted the roof off a house and a huge suction vacuum would pull all the dirt out, all at once. Where’s Rosie the maid from the Jetsons when you need her!

  • The countertop is insane. I bet it’s impossible to clean. Sounds like you had your work cut out for you. So rude that the seller couldn’t get her stuff out and left it such a mess. Good luck, and I hope you enjoy your new home.

  • Hilarious, though admittedly challenging. Sounds like you have amazing friends. By the way, severed possum heads are the traditional welcoming gift in that neck of the woods, instead of food baskets. You’re in!,

  • OMG – NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO – who does that to a kitchen bench and lives with it like that ???????? The non-closing drawer would drive me nuts – I would have had to have sanded the bits of tiles down so that the drawer could close !!!
    Did she just let the house get that dirty after you had been around and seen it ?
    When we moved into this house, we had a similar situation. My daughter and her then boyfriend arrived there first and the grandma was still there and wouldn’t let them in the house even though the time was past for when we could move in. I was furious about the whole thing (lots of other things went wrong and this was just the final straw) when I got there and they told me why they were sitting with cars full on the side of the road. I told them to get some stuff and we marched in there. She told me to get out and wait for her son to arrive and I told her that she could wait wherever she wanted but we were moving our stuff in as the removalists were being paid by the hour and unless she wanted to pay them extra they were not going to be sitting around waiting for her son. They also still had furniture in rooms so they were going out the front door and we were coming in the garage door. The estate agent was even there helping them move !!!!!
    They also left the place as filthy as (although not nearly as bad as yours) – I remember having to vacuum the carpets and, in two rooms, the carpets were full of nail clippings – I nearly vomited on the spot !!!!!
    Anyway – they are out and we are in and very very happy – I hope that you will be as happy as Larry in your new home – CONGRATULATIONS !!!!!!
    xox from Australia

  • first, only the countertops are egregious. just hire someone to put in something new.

    second, I need to see fur covered walls

    third, peek under the carpet by lifting in the corner and see if there are wood floors. even old beat up wood floors that wou wash with Murphy’s oil soap are better that gross old carpet.

    fourth, raccoons and dogs eat possums, leaving the heads

    finally, FUCK, FUCK FUCKITY FUCK!!

    • fortunately, there is no carpet all. All wood or tile floors. Yay! I used some stuff called Victorian House applied with steel wool…really made the floors look awesome even with the flaws.

  • OMG! Well, paint will fix most of what’s wrong with that kitchen but I think a pick ax is the only solution for that horrendous counter. Who does that? You can almost see the germs living down in that mess. Ick. It amazes me the filth some people live in, and survive.

  • We have a consensus; one fucking ugly kitchen, that counter….wtf? As I read this we are in week three of our contract to purchase a house. Our inspector found powder beetles in the carport (the entire house is pecky Cyprus) which the owners had not disclosed they had been treating for them FOR YEARS. We have an estimate for treatment and have to have another inspection. The other day I found the bottle of valium that I was given for my cats when I drove them 900 miles from Ohio to Florida. I cut one in half and took it. Why should they have all the fun? (my husband told our mortgage lender, who has been wonderful, that we are running out of alcohol)

    Peace and love……and alcohol.

  • I will never doubt your drama again…
    Even I can’t explain the counter and I’m as white trash as it comes…
    Well… I CAN explain the counter… and filth, but it’s drug related, and I hate casting shade…
    Maybe a round of antibiotics for everyone and extra wormer for the cats?
    As bad as it is? That’s the exact opposite of the spectrum of your finished kitchen…
    It will be amazing and I can hardly wait for the side-by-side video comparisons…
    Any house fix-it shows taking auditions?

    • Haha..I don’t know if I’d put this house on TV. It would probably break TVs across the globe. You know, or of the dozens of people who would even care to look at our house.

  • I’m trying to catch up on reading YOUR posts, so I’m skipping everyone else’s comments (which, if I were caught up, I would totally read). So I may repeat what others have already said in the next four months’ worth of posts. That was a disclaimer.

    New flooring; new countertops; possibly new cabinetry.

    I sincerely hope that the rest of the house makes up for this horrible kitchen. I’m sure I’ll find out, in the next four months’ worth of posts. 🙂

By Michelle


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