Allison: Here's a good place to start! Have fun dreaming and planning! :-)
Hi Allison, I found this video and article which has a whole bunch of tips - https://www.todayshomeowner.com/video/how-to-plan-and-budget-for-a-kitchen-renovation/. Best of luck with your renovation
Allison...If you are going with a total rehaul I would decide what I want and where then draw it out. Get some kitchen remodel books and they will help with some of your decisions. Congrats...just make yourself happy with your new kitchen!
Research thoroughly and prepare for major inconveniences in the time it will take to demo your existing kitchen and renovate. You'll need another place to eat, and how will you prepare foods? You'll need to remove all plates, glassware, cutlery, cook and bakeware, coffemaker, can opener, blender, etc. to another secure area.
You'll need to know what's available, cabinet heights (over 42" high, doors can tend to warp) and depths (newer cabinets are not as deep as those of 40 years ago- measure your dishes...) , stile or no stile, hard wood or soft wood, plywood interiors not as water resistant, MDF ( tends to off gas formaldehyde forever) or laminate cabinets, painted (usually a 15-30 % upcharge, depending on your location), or glazed (10-15% upcharge).
Interior lights, soft close doors, self closing drawers, deep drawers vs. cabinets (in general, the more drawers, the more cost), pull outs, lazy susans with short or medium height edge guards, quality of cabinets, reputation of cabinet makers, warranties, custom inserts for spices, cutlery, dish dividers.
How much weight will each fixed vs, slide out shelf support (varies amongst manufacturers).
Pantries with sliding or roll out shelves, etc., etc.
How tall are you? Will you eant your countertops raised? How many will use the kitchen simultaneously? Do you want two sinks? Where do you want them located?
Do you want wall ovens, large, powerful hood vent and cooktop? How many burners and where do you want controls-on face, at front, or on side?
Do you want gas, electric, or a combination?
Do you want an island?
Do you want ceiling fans, an eat in area?
How many doorways do you have to deal with?
Where are windows located?
Do you need more electrical upgrades for appliances with a large "draw"?
What counter surfaces do you prefer? Will they work with children?
What flooring material do you want? If tile, know the various grades/hardness levels. If wood, hardwood or engineered? If vinyl, what caliber?
What quality and style of faucets and sinks do you want?
What do you want as a backsplash material? WIll it be easily cleaned?
Do you need a place for extra tall or deep cooling racks, bakeware, etc.?
Do you want dimmable lighting? LED? Canned lights or pendants? Wall sconces?
Do you need to increase insulation in existing walls?
You can spend a year of almost continual research through books available at Home depots and Lowes, but additionally, visit many, many kitchen design places and interview their (hopefully) Certified Kitchen Designers. You'll meet some that have never worked in a kitchen, but think they know best. Some won't reveal options, upgrades, costs, installation time, etc.
Make sure everything you want is set in stone, because changes cost money.
You'll need a contract clause dealing with any damages or delays on part of contractor.
You all are just plain AWESOME! Thank you for the wonderful advice. I have so much to think about now. You are wonderful!