My Kitchen is Where the Action Is

Last night I was at a friend’s house and we talked about being new home owners. She totally renovated her entire house before she moved in and I was thoroughly impressed with what she had done – tile flooring in the kitchen, dark hardwood in the other rooms, and other things like that. However, the room that I focus on the most is the kitchen. I like to maximize my space in the kitchen and we talked about how she could get more out of her kitchen. My brain was going at high speed, but she was pretty resolved that it works pretty well. It works for what she needs it to be and I thought that was pretty cool. However, I am constantly problem-solving with how my house and kitchen could maximize its space better.

When I saw Treehugger‘s recent email about having a fridgeless kitchen, I was intrigued. Of course, the Treehugger article was lacking in any real substance, so I had to go to their links. One woman did a whole year of steps to being more environmentally sound, including going fridgeless. I was pretty impressed when I read about it and it would work here for at least 6 months of the year – I’ve even heard of people making ice blocks in the snow and bringing it in to chill the unplugged fridge. However, I think that having a smaller fridge would probably be more realistic and better all around.

According to Treehugger, the “Union of Concerned Scientists’s Consumer’s Guide to Effective Environmental Choices explains that the refrigerator is the worst energy hog in a home, sucking up 1,383 kilowatt hours per year in a typical household. According to the [US] Department of Energy, refrigerators use 14% of a household’s electricity.” This definitely makes sense to me and makes me want to look into getting a smaller, energy-efficient fridge.

When my new roommate moved in, the idea would be that we each got half the fridge. Since this roommate does not actually eat, sleep, or really live in my house (and only uses it for storage of his stuff in his room), the fridge has remained only half full. I have been very conscious at keeping my leftovers eaten, my vegetables consumed, and my condiments to a minimum. With all of this in mind, there really is no reason to have a bigger fridge.

Of course, with my space-maximizing thoughts always racing in my mind, I have a vision of a small fridge with a freezer on top of a set of shelves that would hold canning and a potato bin at the bottom. Oh yeah, it will be lovely. Time to start looking and saving!

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2 Comments

  1. Scott said,

    October 22, 2008 at 11:00 pm

    Just thought I’d say that it’s better if you have lots of condiments and a full fridge as far as efficiency is concerned. Because you trade the cooled air with warm air every time you open your fridge, the fridge has to work more often. If your fridge was filled with things more dense than air (say water jugs or ketchup) the temperature inside the fridge does not change as quickly when you open it.
    So until you have a smaller fridge, it’s actually better to fill it up.
    http://www.greenyour.com/home/appliances/refrigerator/tips/keep-a-full-refrigerator

  2. Crystal said,

    October 22, 2008 at 11:33 pm

    Hey Scott,
    Yes, I’m aware that it’s better to have a full fridge than an empty one – although the water jug thing is good to know. I’ll keep that in mind. Currently, I have spread out my food in the fridge I have right now, but am really looking forward to a smaller one! The research continues… if you hear of any, let me know!
    Thanks for the link!


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