Well, this is what I've been working on: a 3-D 'model' of what my 'new' kitchen will likely look like, utilizing the existing space and being careful to not add to the so-very-low budget (mental budget, no actual dollar amount set!) by having to unnecessarily change existing plumbing and electrical too much.
Picture 1 is a bird's eye view ~ excuse the wonkiness, I'm only using tape, graph paper and scissors. I've planned 30" counterspace to the left of the sink, 42" to the right of the sink, 36" for range, and 30" to the right of the range. Some of that could be flexible, meaning less, not more room. There is a window over the sink - I don't want to move it. Currently the dishwasher is at the left of the sink with a skinny 6" or narrower cabinet between it and the wall. Where I show the range, the current layout stops there with that being a peninsula with a range top. My oven was inset into that wall on the left but that's where we reconfigured the bathroom which is on the other side of the wall, so I presently have no oven. Directly opposite the sink I would like a large floor to ceiling cabinet which is shown where the yellow is and beside it would be a small counter with upper and lower cabinets and a shelf for the microwave. I'd like a portable island with cabinet base no larger than 3'x 4' - I've seen some images of a couple I'd be pleased with. The other 'square' at the lower-center is the refrigerator (currently the pantry which to the left in the pic is an unused cavity which formerly held the furnace - now on the roof with the A/C). The cavity will become a shelved area to house all those occasionally used small appliances and things like maybe boxed cereal, potatoes, onions - dark & cool. There's a doorway into the hall which runs parallel behind that wall of the cab/counter/microwave plan. The frig was (ok, still is) where I want that counter/cabs/microwave, so you can imagine how much it juts into the floorspace of the kitchen and doesn't leave much room with a peninsula. - the orig. kitchen is ca. 1966.
Picture 3 shows the dining area - before I continued the side wall. That wall is solid floor to ceiling, side to side. The back shows the opening for the projected door, as well as my cut-outs representing the sizes and space that our table, chairs and hutch/china cabinet take up. I would prefer and door that swings open, but there just isn't the room so a slider is more fitting. Between the refrigerator and where the hutch is, there is the door to the garage and the hutch is against the solid wall of the garage. My washer/dryer are on the other side of that wall in the garage and I'd hoped to have included that in this remodel, but it doesn't look like that's going to happen. I'll live with it. Our dining room has been 'huge' compared to the actual kitchen space, so that will be changing - we rarely entertain, so no biggy. When we bought the table, my thoughts were that we'd be having gatherings of folks over a lot so the table, with extensions would be 4' x 9' and is still plenty big without the extensions. We were once far more involved in social activities than we are now. Oh well, something else I've gotten used to over the years...or not.
I'm glad I went through this exercise. I needed a 3-D model to get my mind wrapped around what the possibility could be and to see if it would work for us. I think it will and I think this is what I'll present to our contractor. Each square of the graph paper equals 6". It's not entirely accurate, but is close enough. The sink counters would appear to be 30" deep, but in reality, I think they'd be closer to 24" for the cabinets, but the counter may come out close to 26".
My thoughts for the wall at the left end of the kitchen would be to put up a wire grid where I could use S hooks to hang pans or utensils, with maybe a shelf or two above for my cookbooks. Will have to wait and see. We considered moving the wall where the shorter section is, but it's a load-bearing wall, and that complicates things and I'm sure would add more than what we want to spend on the re-do.
I welcome any comments or suggestions, but keep in mind, I've considered this for now over 16 years taking into account how we function as a family and how I cook presently (not much) and how I really would like to cook (and used to) again.