Look ma, no microwave!
Who needs one? We've been air-popping our popcorn for a couple months now and I figured out that you can melt butter by putting some in a little prep bowl and setting it on top of the toaster as you make your toast. There weren't all that many other uses we put it to besides the popcorn and butter. Plus, Jess saw this article a while ago and whether you believe 45-year-old Russian studies or not, maybe there's a chance this is even good for us.
The greatest part of this is how much extra space we have on the counter now. We've never really had any sort of prep space in the kitchen. I still make bread at the table, but that may actually be habit now. Perhaps I'll give it a shot over here now. After all, the counter is a much sturdier kneading surface than our table anyway.
See how huge it was?
We only had four inches or so of counter space in front of this thing. And it's kind of ugly (sorry Mom and Dad).
We have considered the possibility of acquiring a toaster oven. The jury's still out on that idea though. A toaster oven would be more energy-efficient for many uses since it's got a significantly smaller volume to maintain a high temperature in. However, a toaster oven too would take up space. Though I imagine that besides pizza we may be able to make most of our oven-baked goods in a smaller oven. But still, I'm not sure if going back to less counter space sounds that great to me. Perhaps if we found some stuff we don't need and could find some cabinet space to store the toaster oven? Or perhaps it wouldn't look too awful where the bread box is. Oh yeah, we want to get rid of our bread box too. Who wants it? Or the microwave?
So, as far as a de-cluttering idea, I give getting rid of the microwave an A+. Waste-wise it makes no difference because we hadn't been using microwave popcorn anyway. Energy-use-wise it might be a bit of a wash, given that we will be heating up an oven for leftovers now. Still, I'm really happy to see that thing go.