Talk about a fun way to spend a Friday night. With the fireplace roaring, and his stereo blasting the Cavs game for all the neighbors to hear, Matt demolished the two walls and built-in cabinet that previously enclosed the kitchen. The floor plan of the first floor living area is a very large, open space, but the kitchen was so small and cut off from the flow of the house. We knew we wanted to open it up to the rest of the room.
However, we did not know what we would discover once the walls were removed. We expected to find a load-bearing post under the main support beam--and we did--but we had assumed it would be a steel post just like those at the other two load-bearing points in the room. It was not. Instead there were three 2x4's nailed together. Now that this support will be exposed, rather than inside the wall, we will probably try to replace it with a matching steel post.
We also learned that much of the electrical wiring for the room came up through the wall that was removed, and when Matt cut the wiring to remove the wall, much of the lighting in the room was disabled. Let the troubleshooting begin.
Now for the fun part--before & after:
Thankfully, we have some family and friends coming over to help clean up our mess tomorrow!