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April


The Cupboard Under The Stairs Wednesday April 13, 2016

"This is not how I imagined it!"

"I don't want that thing there!"

"I want it got rid of!"

What I was talking about was an unwanted cupboard under the stairs.

You see, we're just rebuilding our house.

The problem was the kitchen area. It was never going to be large, but I had envisaged walking under the stairs through the back of the kitchen to the bunk room at the back of the house.

The fact that the builder had enclosed the stairs totally and created a cupboard big enough to sleep another person (wizards need not apply), meant that the already small kitchen became micro-sized.

"How am I supposed to cook for ten in that space?"

Oh, you can tell the builder is not a man who cooks!

But we couldn't take out the cupboard. One of its walls is the supporting pillar which holds up the entire place.

Huh! That wasn't shown on the plans.

"Um – I thought we could put shelves in it..." suggested my husband, in placating accents, waving his hands to indicate entirely useless and inaccessible shelves.

"Huh!"

I stood and stared at the cupboard.

It really was a ridiculously large cupboard. And I needed it gone so I could have its space for my kitchen...

And then I had my brainwave.

What if, instead of deep shelves across it, I put narrow shelves on each side of it? I could then walk into it – right to the back... I could keep all the non-perishable food in it... It could be a larder (I've always wanted a larder)... Which would mean the micro-kitchen would work because I wouldn't need any food storage... Because the cupboard itself would be part of the kitchen...

BRILLIANT!

I was still on crutches, so I couldn't dance a gig. But I wanted to.

And we were all happy. The builder was happy because he didn't have to reconfigure the structural support of the building. My husband was happy because he didn't have to think of a way to pay for the refiguring of the structural support of the building. I was happy because I have a larder and had found a way to make something work.

Just by looking at it from a different point of view.

We can't solve all our problems just by looking at them from a different angle – but just occasionally – we can solve some of them.

Mary
A Moodscope member.

Thoughts on the above? Please feel free to post a comment below.


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Comments

LillyPet Wed, Apr 13th 2016 @ 4:49am

Good morning Mary ( couldn't sleep, lots on my mind...)

I love this blog and how wonderfully you've constructed it! ( pun intended :)).
Having work done on the home is stressful and hardly ever seems to run smoothly. In fact it's often hard to cope with transitions or changes in general. I could actually feel the joy and relief your brainwave brought you!

I love a win win resolution too! I have a tiny house with too little storage so this really stroke a chord with me! I dream of a walk in larder too, as well as a walk in wardrobe and utility space. You've inspired me to make those dreams into plans!

Your blog has also made me think about conflict. Rather than getting frustrated and angry about the behaviour of ( not just) children) seeing it from another angle, perhaps they (and we) need to see or learn how there could be another way, a win win.

Thanks for a great blog Mary! Wishing you and all smooth runnings!
LP xx

LillyPet Wed, Apr 13th 2016 @ 7:21am

Struck!

Mary Wed, Apr 13th 2016 @ 10:15am

Thank You LillyPet. Yes - backing up and looking at things in another way is always useful.

Lou Wed, Apr 13th 2016 @ 6:32am

Serendipitous timing on this blog as I was reading a book on worry yesterday that advocated a change of perspective on the subject that I had never considered before but really resonated. I am definitely taking this as a sign it is something I need to consider!

I loved the thought of you trying to do a jig on your crutches Mary! Take it steady, but enjoy stocking your larder and thanks very much for the food for thought.

Lou

Mary Wed, Apr 13th 2016 @ 10:15am

Thank you Lou. so glad this has helped someone.

Hopeful One Wed, Apr 13th 2016 @ 7:36am

Hi Mary- You must have relished that 'light bulb' moment that solved your space problem!You are right that often a change of perspective can give different insights into a particular problem. I think that's easier to do if the situation is outside of oneself. One finds it a lot more difficult when the situation is inside one self. Then the 'light bulb' moments are more difficult to come by. The way our minds are configured we need the help of the more emotive,compassionate ,intuitive right brain because, if we only deploy our linear ,progressive ,logical left brain( in most people) the problem gets only worse taking that 'light bulb 'moment further and further away.

Today's laugh is short. Last night I was told off(at least that's how it felt ) for cracking jokes so I am smarting from that.It struck me that the person who was telling me off couldn't have told me a single joke for toffee!

Nick was sitting in his divorce lawyer's office. "Do you want the bad news first or the terrible news?" the lawyer said. "Give me the bad news first." "Your wife found a picture worth a half-million pounds." "That's the bad news?" asked Nick shockingly. "I can't wait to hear the terrible news." "The terrible news is that it's of you and your secretary."

Mary Wed, Apr 13th 2016 @ 10:20am

HO - we love your jokes here - even if they are often double edged and bring a wry snort of laughter as we mentally go "ouch" - as I did for this one. So - keep them coming. And remember - it is impossible to please all the people all the time and a waste of your life trying to do just that. Also - whatever you do - not everyone is going to like you. That was a really hard one for me to swallow - because I love to be liked by everyone. But - never gonna happen - so I'll just stick around here, where - mostly - we all seem to quite like each other... So - have a hug HO, you jokester!

Hopeful One Wed, Apr 13th 2016 @ 12:30pm

Hi Mary- Thanks for that. You are absolutely right it is impossible to please all the people all the time. Freud thought of psychoanalysis as making the 'unconscious conscious'. Its a shame he did not think of jokes as a tool for doing just that.The listener's reaction to my jokes( yes some are crap I accept but some are pretty good) tells me more about them then they would have cared to reveal!

Lou Thu, Apr 14th 2016 @ 9:52am

HO - I enjoy your daily jokes, even the groaners! Please keep 'em coming :)

Sarah Wed, Apr 13th 2016 @ 8:57am

Hi Mary, great blog thank you. My son has a large cupboard under the stars, built , like yours when having a new kitchen. He has his utility room in there and a rail for clothes/ coats. I enjoy going in there because I appreciate the sensible use and the fact that its possible to walk into. The sloping part was made into a separate cupboard. Talking of cupboards I have a room in my imagination that I take all my negative thought into. I leave them there and go into my positive one to collect them for each day. I find this really helpful and do it on waking everyday. Then read Moodscope! Sarah ( yellow rose)

Mary Wed, Apr 13th 2016 @ 10:21am

What a brilliant idea Sarah! (And I also like the idea of a utility room in the under stairs cupboard... I will have to see if we can put a washing machine in there too....

Wyvern Wed, Apr 13th 2016 @ 11:33am

The cupboard under the stairs had some shelves in it that my Dad had put up ... twice. The first time my Mum filled them with tins and boxes of food, whereupon they fell off the wall!
This cupboard became our favourite space while we were small enough to use it. The back had the hoover and other big items in, but the front had just enough space to sit two small people while we played with whatever we had in the early 60's. Fond memories.

Mary Wed, Apr 13th 2016 @ 2:31pm

Memo to me: Make sure shelves are robust enough to take heavy cans and packets of food! And - what a lovely memory to have of playing in that safe space!

Susan Wed, Apr 13th 2016 @ 5:11pm

Hello Mary What an encouraging post, and I adore the title, it sounds magical, like a secret place to escape to. I love cupboards; as a child, I found my grandma's pantry irresistable and was fascinated by her post-WW11 habit of prizing her non-perishable and perishable goodies, which would often sit on a high up shelf well past their BB date. Tragic when it was a box of chocolates. I don't know whether Sarah noticed that she had written 'cupboard under the stars'- now that would be my ultimate cupboard, with room enough for a comfy chair, telescope, and a flask of something delectable.

The Gardener Wed, Apr 13th 2016 @ 5:43pm

We were sleeping in a spectacular room with 18th century pannelling. Next to it was a stupendous room - huge salon, same pannelling. Mr G, to have a pee in the night, had to cross the big salon risk falling down stairs and then into the loo. By the time he got back to bed was frozen. Could not do 'en suite' would have meant building out into the road. so.

The Gardener Wed, Apr 13th 2016 @ 5:49pm

Decided to 'swap' rooms and open on door into bathroom, hence en suite' Our bed 'cowered' at the end of a room worthy of Versailles, with virtually a completely sitting room in front of us. Grandson shoved sofas, beds, got rid of DVD's behind a door and lined a ceiling. Just shown what is now our 'ex' house to prospective buyers - it still has the 'wow' factor - doors wide enough for a crinoline.

Mary Thu, Apr 14th 2016 @ 9:35am

Ah - you should take photos! We'd love to see. Send them to Caroline who will put them on our Facebook page! Although - I can definitely see it in my mind's eye!

Marc Sun, Apr 17th 2016 @ 6:56am

I loved that you were able to solve the issue by looking at the problem from a different point of view. Sometimes we get so stuck in the mire that we are unable to see that the answer is right in front of us. I think it helps to stand back from the issue and breathe, let the thoughts flow in. Well done!

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