Monday, September 29

5 Temporary Kitchen Essentials for your Remodel

I have said it more than once.  Most people only experience a full blown kitchen remodel once in their lifetime, and have no idea what to expect.  So when you start setting up your temporary kitchen, what do you do?  What do you need to keep out?  What can you live without, and what is an absolute must.  Where would you even begin?  Here are some basics, because after all, eating out at McDonald's every night is going to get expensive!
  1. Microwave - Today's microwaves can be a great all in one cooking device, especially convection styles that can bake any casserole your family could want.  Some even come with a steam setting which can steam veggies in just a few minutes.  (I use this feature on mine weekly!)  So your temporary kitchen should include a microwave.  If you are concerned about the microwaves and your families safety, then look into a toaster oven.  If you have an over the range model, do not use it in your temporary kitchen.  They often pull too much energy, and have a slanted bottom, causing them to be dangerous, and to trip a breaker.  If the only microwave you have is an over the range type, take a trip to target or Home Depot and get a cheap counter top microwave.  A good sized unit will cost you around $100, and you may even be able to donate it after the remodel.
  2. Toaster Oven - Not your regular toaster.  Toaster ovens can act like a mini oven, making small casserole's, baking chicken or whatever you need your oven to do.  They are small and usually inexpensive.  A great alternative for the microwave-free family.  (I got my toaster oven at CVS for less than $20, so seriously, not a huge investment!)
  3. Coffee Maker - Ok, so everyone enjoys a good cup of "wake up juice" but you can also use the coffee maker to generate hot water for anything.  Even getting a head start on boiling potato's or macaroni and cheese for the kids.
  4. Camp Stove - If you don't have a bar-b-q, then a camp stove is a great investment.  Fry up some yummy taco's.  You can also use it with that hot water from the coffee maker when making that mac n cheese, or mashed potato's. I got my camp stove at Home Depot for under $80, and it uses those little mini propane tanks.  We got through two summers on one mini tank, so it shouldn't cost you too much to keep it going.  
  5. Keep it Simple - Keep clear bins labeled with cookware and utensils, spices and pantry essentials.  It will help make your life easier when looking for that one wooden spoon you kept handy, or the spices. It is also a highly frustrating time for any family to live through, so the simpler you keep it, the better for everyone involved. 
Obviously a Refrigerator is a must, so hang on to that old fridge and keep it out of the way of work.  You can use it to keep the cereal milk nice and cold.  I have also had clients tell me they keep the kitchen project schedule handy, so they can "count down the days" until they get to cook for the first time.  A light at the end of the tunnel if you will.  I also recommend not tearing out the old kitchen until the new cabinets have been delivered and are ready to go in.  Avoid any extra delays.  If a cabinet comes in damaged, why spend that extra few weeks without a kitchen?