I called Carpet Direct today to schedule them to come out. That's where we purchased our carpet and got a great deal. They sell tile, laminate, and hardwoods as well. When I was talking with him he said they sell Shaw flooring. So I decided to check out the options on their website before he heads over tomorrow.
They have the NEATEST tool. I took a picture of our kitchen uploaded it and they let me try out different floors on my own kitchen!! Not only that but I can also change the wall color. What an awesome way to see what tile would look like in my kitchen (awesome by the way) plus I tried out several different laminates. I really love the wood look. It's just really homey.
There are concerns about tile. 1) our floors are uneven and the grout could crack. 2) our kitchen floors are FREEZING in the winter due to a crawl space under the kitchen area. Tile would be even colder than laminate. 3) we have tile in the back hallway and I think it would look weird to have two different tiles butt up to each other so we would need to re-tile the hallway as well.
The issues with laminate are 1) our insurance adjuster said they are extremely susceptible to water damage. He mentioned that just tipping your mop bucket over will ruin them. Real woods can be patched or sanded making it easier to fix vs replacing the whole floor. Real wood isn't really an option for us due to 5 kids and 2 dogs. They'd look nice for about a week. 2) As hard as they try they just don't look like real wood or tile (yes there are laminates that look like tile and grout).
If we go with laminate I may have it through the living room as well. It just depends on cost. We have extremely high traffic through there and the carpet gets a beating. We purchased a rug to protect the living room but the transition from one room to the other is exposed and it gets really dark. Jared's not a fan of hard flooring in the living room so that may take some convincing. We'll see.