Archive for the ‘temp kitchen’ Category

Temp kitchen #2

Posted: 11/20/2010 in temp kitchen

Since our college girl will be home for a week we decided to move the temp kitchen out of her bedroom. For most of the rest of the construction time, we will have (inside) overnight access to the basement. For a few weeks, I can deal with a few flights of steps to find my coffee! πŸ˜‰

We split the stuff between the storage shelves in the laundry room, and the workspace in the man cave. It’s a little crowded when we’re doing laundry, or when there’s projects in process in the workroom. But we’ll manage.

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Ok, this is not scientific. I just took pictures of the things that we use the most and really appreciate having in our temporary kitchen.

10. Plastic wear of some kind, especially for breakfast. Cereal in a paper bowl is BLEAH. Cups are nice because the paper/plastic routine gets a little old. Food on paper starts to TASTE like paper. Yuck.

9. Clorox wipes. (OK, ANY brand will do – just use one that has a disinfectant in it.) You can’t really keep a plastic tablecloth clean by wiping it off with paper towels (at least, not to my satisfaction.) The plastic tablecloth saves the furniture underneath (in this case, the college girl’s desk). But it needs to be really clean after you chop/cook/eat off of it. Solution: wipes.

8. A slow cooker. While I haven’t used mine as much as I thought I would, I still like the option of making dinner before I leave for work. And while it’s a little messy to clean up, it still makes life easier at the end of the day. We’re just getting into stew and soup season here, so I think I will be using it more.

7. The Stick Vacuum. Great for the little messes like up-ended bowls of cereal (ask me how I know…) Convenient in that it fits in a closet. When you’re short on space, every little bit helps!

6. Coffee pot that uses pods. I hate instant coffee. I can only drink so much of those “international” ones, so this was a good solution. My only complaint is that it makes weak coffee, so you have to use two to get a full mug. Otherwise, I love being able to make a quick cup of coffee while I’m getting dressed. If only it came with an iv – then it would be perfect. πŸ™‚

5. Toaster Oven. Now that I know there is Texas Toast with garlic and extra cheese, I can have my hot, crusty breads with pasta and salad again. I have missed that “oven” crunchiness of warmed bread. This one came with a pizza stone, which is also very nice to have.

4. Mini-fridge – one that is not the cube sized. We can fit breakfast items (creamer, milk, juice, butter) and a few things for lunches in there. Very handy. Also kind on the eyes of the contractors who don’t have to see a coffee-deprived homeowner staggering through the work area to the basement to find the coffee creamer.

3. Microwave: this appliance gets the most use on a daily basis, but didn’t get number one because we bought a cheapo one and it doesn’t work as well as the one I’m used to. For ease of meal-planning, there’ s a LOT of foods now that come pre-packaged for the microwave, so it’s a necessity. It won’t scramble your electrons or fry your brain. Really. I think this one will go to college when we are done with our remodel.

2. Electric kettle. Gotta love being able to have hot chocolate, or tea, or instant oatmeal. We used it a lot before in our old kitchen, now it’s probably the appliance that gets the most use, next to the microwave.

AND the NUMBER ONE ITEM you will want in your temporary kitchen…

1. AN AIR CLEANER! Seriously. They are making my life so much more live-able. yes, we have a contractor who uses a great air scrubber. There’s still dust (LOTS of dust). There’s one in each bedroom, in my study, in the basement… Β They aren’t super-expensive, and they really do help.


There you have it. My opinions and free advice (which is worth what you paid for it.)

It’s a challenge to cook without a kitchen. Our temporary cooking space is actually in our college girl’s bedroom. There’s a mini-fridge, microwave, electric kettle, electric skillet and crockpot on her desk. I also kept my blender out for when a smoothie just sounds good.

But — without a stove and oven, it’s a challenge.

Tonight’s gourmet guide suggests:
chicken breast medallions with vegetables in a curry sauce (pre-cut chicken, which was cut up and then frozen; vegetable medley, frozen; jar of Patak’s mild curry cooking sauce)
Brown rice (microwaved pre-packaged Seeds of Change spiced rice and lentils)

(a little blurry – sorry!)

I’d offer you some, but there’s not much in the way of leftovers! πŸ™‚

The best laid-plans (and communication) can go awry.

Today the entire kitchen was demo’d and all of the appliances were removed. I thought I had another day or two. (I did not check the master schedule – it was our fault! They had warned us.) Fortunately, I was able to get something leftover (ka-bobs from the weekend) to warm up for dinner without too much trouble. I moved all of the contents from the kitchen fridge to the basement freezer and fridge. We also had to take down a dust wall to get some things out of the dining room. I had not finished cleaning that area out, and so… well… we had to do a bit of extra work tonight, work that we were not exactly planning on doing… but had to be done, nonetheless.

The good news is we have done 99% of the work for the construction moving/packing/relocating. The last bit will be when we have to be out of the way for the installation of the floors… in about 6 weeks.

So it’s out with the old…

And in with the temporary…

Until we get to the new!!

We found out today we have 3 more weeks until inside demo begins. We will have to vacate the current kitchen and move into our alternate space then. While I have pared things down a lot, I know that last hurdle will be a big one. Right now I’m trying to decide how to handle things like our pantry items. Do I store them? Sort and pitch? Stockpile some essentials? I’m guessing it will be a little bit of all three. The biggest challenges will center around doing the laundry. We have to walk through the construction zone to get to the basement (where the washer and dryer are located). The basement is also where we have our major chill time (TV, etc.)

It’s a small inconvenience towards a bigger goal.

Hmmmmm…. sounds a lot like life.

Just like dorm life…

Posted: 08/29/2010 in temp kitchen

This last week we moved our college girl back into her dorm. As we helped her get settled, I thought to myself, “Wow. Mini-fridge. Microwave. Coffee/water pot. Basket of a few plates and utensils. Hmmmmm. During remodeling, we’ll be living it up like dorm life.”

We’re still debating how much of what to have where for our remodeling kitchen. I found out late last week that where I WAS going to have a temporary kitchen, they will be digging through the foundation to attach the “new” space to the old space. Concrete dust al fresco, anyone? Nope. THAT won’t work. Once that part of the work is done, though, we will be able to have some semblance of a temporary kitchen in the basement.

It did bring to mind one “apartment” I lived in when I was young, poor and single and working in New Jersey. I had the third floor of a home. I had a microwave, fridge and toaster oven in my bathroom (It was a HUGE bathroom!) and did my dishes in my sink. It was a creative, cheap way to live… for a while.

I didn’t think I’d be re-living that experience again. But really, I’m just grateful we will have running water and electricity. πŸ™‚