{renovate} organization during a remodel

Friends, this is a tricky subject, right? Most of you understand -- when you're going through a remodel, your life is pretty much flipped upside down. It's incredibly easy to let all sense of organization fly right out the window and into the dumpster with your kitchen cabinets. 

I was really nervous to start our kitchen remodel -- is there another room remodel that disrupts your life more? I love to cook. We eat in most nights and the thought of eating every meal out sound both expensive and fattening, quick frankly! So we set about organizing in the midst of our mess. And, we've done good, so far! We each out a tiny bit more, but we're still taking our lunches everyday, and eating dinner at home 5-6 nights a week. YAH! I thought I'd take you through a quick tour of what's working for us, organizationally, during this kitchen remodel.

 Looks like a disaster area right? :)

We packaged up 99% of our kitchen into boxes. The rest live on this shelf, which we bought for this reason. We kept our four plates, bowls, etc and four knives, spoons, forks. We have quite a few more glasses than that, but we're both really bad at having more than one glass at a time full of liquid :). Behind the plates, I gathered all of our etcetera supplies - can opener, measuring cups, tongs, etc - into a wooden tray to keep them from going everywhere. Behind the cups is tupperware for our lunches and bags. The bottom shelves hold the few baking supplies we might need - mini spring forms for cheesecake, for example - and bigger things we didn't really want to box up.

All in all, it's not a lot of dishware, but it's enough for us and a couple friends, which means, it's the perfect amount!

On the other side of the room is the "pantry". On the same type of shelf as the dishes, we have plenty of room for any non-refridge food. 

As for actually washing the dishes, we converted our downstairs bathroom (never seen before on the blog! ;) into a wash room. We scrubbed (and I mean SCRUBBED) this bathroom clean, moved one of the old kitchen cabinets down here and now we have a good size sink and a drying area. :)

Of course, doing the dishes in the upstairs bathroom would be way more convenient, but it's just SO SMALL for us to both use and do dishes in. The sink is about half the size of the downstairs sink. So, we have a tub to carry our dishes up and down the stairs in. I feel like I'm at camp :).

As for cooking, the barbecue and crockpot have been life savers. We throw chicken or roast with veggies in the crockpot to simmer all day while we're at work. Or we barbecue hamburgers, steak, veggies, and fish other days. Nothing we make is fancy by any means, but it's healthy and delicious. 

Right near the "pantry" and dishes we have this old desk set up for a prep station. It's tiny. But, it does it's job. It's mainly used to chop veggies on, or to put the blender on for morning smoothies.

All in all, this has been an interesting lesson in doing more with less. I know I'll feel so spoiled once we have a kitchen again, because it'll feel like so much space! :) I hope this helps people thinking about doing a kitchen remodel see that it doesn't have to be bad Thai take out for a couple months. With a little organization, you can keep a function kitchen going through a remodel.


  1. Wow! I am impressed. You've done well. Grill & slow cooker are such smart ideas.

  2. I'm impressed too! You really have planned this well, and you have the discipline to carry it through! We ate out way too much when remodeling, it's just so easy to do. If you're this organized amidst chaos you must be super organized in every day life!

  3. I am SO impressed! When we gutted our kitchen, we just lived on PB&J and microwaved dinners which we stored in cardboard boxes!

  4. I'm really impressed too! Something you never think about. Often we are so focused on the remodel that we don't think about how we will live without that part of our home. This especially goes for the kitchen!

  5. I'm jealous of all of your Trader Joe's goodness on your "pantry" shelves. Sigh. Great work friend!

  6. This just made me realize what is to come for me...as soon as we close on our new condo we are attacking the kitchen. Thanks for the ideas on how to stay sane during the remodel.

  7. Jenn - I read in a previous entry that you were considering beadboard for your kitchen backsplash, since you are in the middle of your remodel it may still be timely to consider a beadboard tile such as this http://www.hastingstilebath.com/tileproductsByCollection.php?catid=40&prodid=773

  8. I'm going to bookmark this post for if we ever get to the demo phase of our addition :) Thanks for the tips!


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