It took two months (actually five years and two months) of planning and researching, a month of renovation work and a helluva lot of money but it was all worth it.
First, I treated myself to an island in the centre of my kitchen. Measuring 4ft X 3ft, it serves as a workspace for my prep work, a table for my morning tea and newspaper ritual and also storage as it has open shelves, cupboards and drawers.
Next, space. My kitchen used to be a tiny, made for one and only one cook space. There was hardly any places for storage, barely room to move around and it was no place to hang out in. Too small. Too dark. What I did -- got rid of the adjoining store room (which contained accumulated junk only) and extended the kitchen to more than double it's original size.
Colour: I have always loved terracotta but you can't have terracotta tiles unless you have a fairly big space. Thanks to my expansion, I could floor my kitchen with terracotta and I used it as the surface of my island too.
I also painted my old-school kitchen door fire engine red! Woo hoo.
A proper oven: For the longest time, I was content using a table top electrical oven: a circular oven with a lid that could bake only one cake or one tray of 8-12 cookies at a time. No fancy controls except a knob for temperature.
So imagine my joy at having a proper convection oven. It isn't top of the range but its good enough for me :)
Knobs: As I said, I've had ideas of how my ideal kitchen would look like for the longest time. So, whenever I saw something I liked -- from utensils to aprons to crockery to door knobs -- I'd guy them and store them till the time was right. One such item were some ceramic doorknobs I got from several places: Petaling Street, India and New York. And so, I have different types of ceramic knobs on my cupboards. I like the mix.
I never fully realised how much a nice kitchen could inspire me. I loved to cook before but now, I am driven to try new things all the time. I spend a lot of my time at home in my kitchen -- I have a TV and a DVD in there so I don't have to sacrifice my TV watching.
Did I already say how much I love my kitchen? Cos I doooooooooo.