And it may be my favorite gift from him to date.
Let me just tell you the saga of the faucet:
As you may or may not know, we live in a house (a gorgeous house, might I add) that was built in 1927. It has been well maintained and relatively untouched since that time. (Read: original hardwood floors and some original bathroom tile and fixtures, beautiful woodwork throughout, many of the original windows. Eeek! Dream come true, basically, if you ask me...)
Obviously, though, since people have been living in it all this time, the kitchen has been "updated" multiple times, and is in need of a complete overhaul at this point.
It doesn't fit the charm of the rest of the house at all in terms of appliances and it's not the most practical in terms of layout, but it is functional.
Soooooo, we're not making any decisions about "big" things until we really know what we love and what works well for us as a family.
Enter leaky kitchen faucet in the first week of our marriage...
I dont know if it was because I was washing so many new dishes or what. (Thanks everybody who gave me beautiful dishware for my wedding! That was the most fun I've ever had washing dishes, and you may have inadvertently contributed to my new faucet as well!)
I was honestly secretly glad when the faucet started leaking, because it was far from being my favorite thing about the house.
In fact, I have a very distinct memory from the first time I washed dishes in this house, when we were still dating. I thought to myself at the time "this may be the most poorly thought-out kitchen sink situation I have ever experienced."
You're not convinced? Behold the evidence:
The faucet is centered over the small basin so that it barely reaches into the large one, and it's so short that rinsing things without banging them against the side of the ceramic sink is nearly impossible.
Unfortunately, we discovered that it wasnt really an immediate need - the leak was mostly fixable by replacing some piping through the cabinet below and just not using my sprayer. It wasn't a perfect, long-term fix, but it worked for the present.
I just adjusted my dishwashing practices and went about life as usual.
But a seed had been planted in both of our minds. We wanted a new faucet.
Now, if we were going to make the investment in a nice faucet, we needed to know what sink we would want in the eventual remodel, in order to know what faucet would go nicely with it.
I'll spare you that process for a different day, but, suffice it to say we ultimately decided on a ceramic sink.
Now, what faucet finish would you put with a ceramic sink? Very early on, my husband threw out polished nickel as, in a general sense, a finish that he really liked. Ladies and gentlemen, I'm ashamed to say I shot him down real quick about that one. I'd seen brushed nickel and liked that, but I was just not interested in a shiny version thereof, and he was certainly not interested in brushed.
Quite honestly, I dont think I'd ever seen a single thing finished in polished nickel. He tried describing it to me, but it just sounded like stainless, which I was not interested in. I might as well have plugged my ears and sang "la la la la la" I was so not interested.
Ultimately we settled on oil-rubbed bronze and did piles of research, but still couldnt make a decision. The sink we decided on has only one hole, so we had to get an all-in-one faucet, because there was no way I would be living for the foreseeable future without a sprayer. So, should we go with a pull-down or a pull-out? Do we want one handle or two? What should we look for to make sure it's built to last? What warranties are offered by what companies?
You get the idea. With my Father-in-law being in construction and my husband being a researcher, we covered it all.
(Of course that's a very loosely-used "we" - I was mostly, if not only, concerned with how it looked...)
Once we had a pretty good idea of what we wanted, we started window shopping, casually walking through the faucet aisle at any home inprovement store we stopped in.
You'd be amazed at how hard it is to find what you want when you actully know what you want. (And, you know, when you dont feel like spending six hundred dollars...)
But then, last night, we were at Menard's, picking up some electrical stuff, and my husband casually led the way to the faucets, as usual. We stopped at the bronze finishes, as usual, and there was one I actually liked the look of, but not a brand we had considered. We pulled the box, and my darling husband began his researching. So far so good, but we were both hesitant, having never considered that brand before.
We pulled a box from a more well-known brand, and began comparing. We decided on the first one we'd pulled, and turned to go. Then my husband noticed a marked-down box just sitting under the displays. He opened it (somebody had already done so before us, hence the mark-down), and we both fell in love.
Friends, you've probably already guessed this, but it was polished nickel. And? The most beautiful faucet I could imagine.
Just to make sure our instincts were right, we carried it over to the sink aisle and held it against a ceramic sink, and yes, it was a wonderful complement.
We walked (well, I might have skipped a bit) out of that store with our marvelous find, and I looked it up on my phone to see if it truly was polished nickel exactly, and of course it was. And while I was at it, I accidentally discovered that we'd just saved THREE HUNDRED DOLLARS off msrp.
Everything we needed was in the box, the faucet is spotless, and I couldn't be happier. I'm assuming somebody bought it online and returned it to the store? This store doesnt even appear to regularly stock polished nickel.
I guess it was just meant to be.
We brought it home and installed it immediately (as in, my husband installed it immediately - I sat at the kitchen table copying down a recipe for French Bread and handing him a wrench every once in a while, and you know what? My amazing husband finished installing that faucet before I finished my recipe.)
And here's the picture you've all been waiting for: my new, gorgeous faucet, centered on my sink with a ready-to-use sprayer!
We do need to plug those holes in our sink, and it is awfully shiny, and will show fingerprints like nobody's business, but I don't mind polishing it up every once in a while, and I did have to compromise by sacrificing my desire for the touch-on/touch-off feature, but I am so pleased with everything about this whole kitchen sink situation!
I guess the moral of the story is: listen to your husband - he's probably actually got really good taste.
And also, possibly: do your research and be patient, but when you see a golden opportunity, reach out and take it!