Bring TV, Music and Home Control to the Kitchen
While the idea of brining entertainment into your kitchen sounds nice, perhaps some areas of the house are best left the old fashioned way? Nahhhh. My most recent attempt at entertainment was brining a laptop into kitchen and running Sage Client to listen to music from my server :), and even a little TV while prepping supper. Parents will especially like this type of setup, with a touch of a button you have access to thousands of children's song to soothe the wild beast children can become during meal time. Electronic House has a few handy tips on setting up your kitchen.
If you are a user Media Center user, a 17" monitor and a thin client/extender would do the trick nicely. I would go with the client based HTPC, it would allow for Internet access to recipes, or radio etc. I am sure someone, more clever then me no doubt, could mount a monitor so it folds out of the way under a counter or something.
My favorite suggestion is no doubt the heated floor. My parents installed that during a bathroom reno, and let me tell you it is fantastic and pretty cheap for small rooms.
From the article:
The busiest place in your house is also bound to be the messiest. A
central vacuum system can more quickly and easily rid the kitchen of
crumbs, dust, dirt and other particles that find their way onto the
floor more quickly and easily than any broom, mop or traditional vacuum
can. All of those cleaning tools can stay in the closet—heck, you may
even want to toss them in the trash. The largest component of a central
vac, the canister where all the debris is collected, stays either in
the basement or the garage. All you need to pull into the kitchen is a
hose, which plugs into an inlet that siphons anything you pick up to
the remote canister. Central vac manufacturers offer a variety of
cleaning attachments suitable for hard-surface flooring, as well as for
window blinds and the inside of your kitchen drawers and cabinets.