When you decide to tear out your kitchen, you need a plan for eating. And if you decide not to eat out for every meal, you need a logistical plan to make meals happen at home in a new location. Because it only takes one demolition day to make a kitchen unusable.
We had two options – move to our family room or to our basement – both of which we’d have to access in the construction zone. Our family room just didn’t make sense due to the construction location and traffic pattern it would create. Although hard to imagine at first, the family room was better used as a sealed-off storage room. Plus, we already had a refrigerator in our basement. (And yes, it did break the week before demolition and had to be replaced. That story is for another day. But yes, I also had to throw away the Easter Honeybaked Ham. And YES, I did cry.)
With a NEW refrigerator in the basement (ALWAYS check Recker and Boerger for appliance deals), we planned to relocate downstairs for meals. And it hasn’t been too bad so far. My main take-aways? I assume most of these apply to camping. However, I don’t camp. But it feels somewhat like that is exactly what we are doing.
- Paper products are the way to go. Just suck it up and completely switch. UNLESS you have a nearby sink. I had no access to running water in the basement…only a utility sink in my laundry room which I sometimes have to leave the house and reenter through the garage to access.
- Thank goodness the kids were in school. Lunch was not my problem! I did pack some lunches, but did not need access to our basement during day which at times would have been a problem due to the work happening.
- It is awesome if your mom or some other relative/neighbor/BFF lives within 2 miles and does not mind if you key-in to their kitchen whenever necessary. Take advantage.
- It is awesome if your neighbor or mom happens to make way too much food and invites you for dinner. Again, take advantage.
- One of the easiest dinners is sandwiches. Jazz it up by toasting the bread and adding some microwavable bacon. The kids will never know what got into you.
- Unless you are a certain someone (you know who you are), breakfast is another easy option – cereals, microwavable oatmeal, toaster waffles, fruits, yogurts, microwavable sausage, etc.
- You might feel wasteful, but again, switch to paper products. Including coffee cups. It’s only for a short time and somewhere like Costco makes it totally affordable.
- BUT keep out a few “real” plates, coffee cups, utensils (knives), etc. if you prefer to use those in the microwave. I do not like to microwave paper or plastic.
- Plastic totes make awesome “pantries”. I have two under our table. One filled with food and one filled with Ziploc bags, microwavable dishes, etc.
- Freeze taco meat, carnitas, pasta dishes, etc. for easy reheat opportunities.
We are only on Day 8 of the kitchen renovation. I’m sure I’ll have many more lessons learned by the time this project is over.