For those of you about to embark on a kitchen remodel, I am sure you feel equally terrified and elated. You have probably been designing and planning a perfect kitchen for a long time. And once the builders arrive, your dream will soon be realised. But before then, you will need to survive the remodel. So I thought I would share some tips that I utilised when we had a new kitchen installed five years ago. And yes, my kitchen did actually look like that - not enough cabinets so everything on the counter, and a big space where an oven should've been, red walls and wood cladding (which is why there wasn't an oven).
- Improvise A Substitute Kitchen - Find a clean area where you can 'cook' and eat. We put a small table in the living room where we could sort out cereal, sandwiches and basic dinners. Then we ate our meals on the sofa or floor. We put the microwave in there as well, and kept the refrigerator in the hallway. This meant that we were able to stay away from the kitchen. You could even use warning signs to help keep the kids from entering that area.
- Pre-Cook - It might seem like extra work, but pre-cooking a few meals and freezing them will be a lifesaver. Just defrost that dish and microwave it and you will have a lovely and easy dinner. I find that pasta dishes and sausages work best being reheated in the microwave. If you have a combi-microwave, then you will be able to use its oven function which is amazing.
- Who Needs A Stove - Okay, okay, ovens and hobs are wonderful. But microwaves and slow cookers/Instant Pots are pretty damn great too. Meals will be made easily, and slow cookers are often much easier to clean. Use foil for even easier cleaning.
- Have A Picnic - I don't mean go outside and freeze to death having a picnic. I mean get picnic food and eat on a blanket or tablecloth on the floor. My children are obsessed with eating hot food. But give them cold sausages, sandwiches and crisps on the floor and they think they're having a party. And if you use paper plates, it's more festive and less clean-up. Hurrah!
- When In Doubt, Get Takeout - Nothing like a cheeky takeaway dinner when no one feels like cooking.
And before you know it, that dream kitchen of yours will be ready. And while this isn't my dream kitchen, I long for a bigger space. It is a wonderful kitchen for our family.