Here are two handy hints for the price of one. Don't say I never gave you anything :)
First off, before you go and buy expensive equipment and gadgets at those great gourmet cooking stores, check out your local ethnic markets. For instance, you can buy a muddler for muddling the limes and lemons for your favorite alcoholic beverage at a gourmet store for a premium price; however, you can go to your local Asian market, where you can find many different-sized pestles for many different-sized mortars. The pestles work perfectly as muddlers and cost a fraction of what you'd pay for a muddler at your gourmet store. It's amazing what you can find at a well-stocked ethnic market. These wonderful stores are a treasure trove for interesting cooking implements at a bargain-basement price.
Second tip, one of a cook's best friends is the waterproof bandage. I'm sure you never cut yourself cooking, but I on the other hand have had some major finger gashes. Regular bandages get really water-logged and then start sliding off your fingers ... yuck, not cool for a cook. Be sure to keep a supply of waterproof bandages in your kitchen drawer. They'll protect your ouchies and stay put, much more protective of your boo-boo and much more hygienic for cooking.