...It is always the simple that produces the marvelous.
-Amelia Barr (1831-1919)
Your kitchen is a bit like mine.It has a nice bit of storage.Have you considered any of these ideas:Use the corner by the fridge as your eat-in area. You could build an L-shaped bench to fit in that corner. The side nearest the fridge could have a lid for storage. The other side may need to have a bench with legs. Since it is a tiny area, you may need to be creative with a table. I think it will have to be narrower than typical tables but you could either find one or repurpose something to fit the bill.To help unify the look of the kitchen, you could add shelves right above the windows. If they could be extended all around the kitchen, it could tie in the different ceiling heights and "odd spots". Keep the shelves painted in a light color to help reflect sunlight into the kitchen.I think additional shelves to the left of the sink could be used for dishes, small bowls, anything that's used routinely. I'd find another spot for the truck - use counter space for function, not solely decoration.The stove area is crying out (I think!) for a small cabinet or cart to its right. When I'm cooking, I like to have my crock of utensils right at the stove so I can grab what I need easily. I also have a wrought-iron like spoon rest that I got at Target. It's black and blends right in with a black surface, which makes the horizontal surface of the stove look less-cluttered. That's important in a small area like we have. The upper level of the cabinet or cart or table (or whatever you come up with to fit in this space) could support your cookbook or recipe card, hold whatever you'll need to add during the process (butter, salt and pepper, etc.) and even have a spot to hang a towel. Maybe you could use that area for upright storage area of cookie sheets, etc.Above the stove, I'd find another use for the chalkboard. You have the tall, narrow, pantry door to the left of the stove that you could add a blackboard to the inside.In place of that chalkboard, you have several options. I like a light over my cooking area and you could add a vintage-type light. Some folks like to hang utensils that are frequently used. I think some sort of open or closed cabinet or shelves would be great there. Just make sure you can bend over the stove (and your husband, too!) without hitting your head! You could add a decorative window, too/If you can, I'd see about replacing the stove with a white one, to match your refrigerator.
thanks for all the suggestions!! :)