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Kitchen Expo:

5 Steps to Thrive While Remodeling Your Kitchen

Kitchen Remodeling
A big kitchen remodel is an exciting project that will add value to your life and value to your home. But a remodel is also a huge disruption in your life that few homeowners fully understand going in. If you're about to embark on this life change, here are a few tips for setting up a temporary kitchen to get you through.

1. Find a Good Spot

The first thing you'll need is a space you can temporarily set up shop in while your kitchen is unusable. This will depend on your needs, family size, and your house's setup. Your contractor can help find a good temporary spot, but common ones include the laundry room, garage, lesser-used bathroom, or utility room.

For the most part, what you'll need is a sink, counter space to work on, and some storage space. You can DIY things like a counter top and pantry shelving. Small appliances — like a mini-fridge, toaster oven, food processor, microwave, camp stove, or table-top grill — often replace large ones. 

2. Pack Up Everything You Can

If your temporary kitchen is small, you may need to be ruthless when it comes to packing the real kitchen. Most temporary spaces are makeshift and have little storage, so be careful about deciding how much you need each kitchen item. Try using plastic and paper tableware as much as possible (to reduce space and sink use). 

If you're having trouble deciding what you can live without, box it all up and store it in an accessible location. Label boxes clearly and make sure you can get to them. You can always retrieve an item if you decide you need it later. 

3. Plan Meals Ahead of Time

Meal planning is key to surviving in a temporary cooking space. You should make the effort even if you're not normally a planner for several reasons. First, planning will tell you which utensils, cookware, and spices you can pack and which you shouldn't. Also, because you'll have less prep space and food storage, you'll need to buy only what you need and use it quickly. Third, planning will give you some order in the chaos that you're likely to experience.  

How should you plan meals? Start early by deciding on some staple menu items that are quick and require only a few ingredients. Focus on ways to use the appliances you have access to. Plan for smaller quantities as well. Save experimentation with new recipes until you have your new kitchen in place. 

4. Pre-Make Meals

If you don't have a full stove or refrigerator, cooking will become much more complicated. One of the best solutions is to pre-make meals and freeze or store them. This not only allows you to avoid cooking when you can't, but it also allows you to cook larger batches in advance and to pack up lesser-used items once those meals have been prepared.

If possible, consider buying an extra freezer for the duration of the remodel so you can pack it with pre-made meals in plastic containers or bags. You can also find instructions online to make meal kits filled with nonperishable foods so you only have to add perishable ingredients at the last minute. 

5. Budget for Eating Out

No matter how well you plan for a kitchen remodel, the inconvenience will still occasionally to you. This frustration could be after a long day's work, when the kids are getting in your way, or when you want to entertain rather than sit at home around a card table for dinner. So, work with this necessity by budgeting for dining out as part of your remodel costs. You'll save your sanity and possibly your family relationships. 

At Kitchen Expo, we have experience with all types and sizes of kitchen renovation projects. We can help you survive and thrive during yours as well. Visit us today to get started on the next phase of your new kitchen.