Compromising comes hard

There comes a time when you are faced with keeping a promise to yourself and compromising a little for your need to feel at home.  That was the problem I have faced for a while now when it came to a storage solution for my kitchen.  I had vowed to buy nothing “new” and only make-do with what I could find used.   Well after 14 months of making-do in regards to my kitchen problem, I bought a new item.

If you have been following my journey to live in my tiny studio apartment, you will know I started out not owning a stove or fridge, but gave in and later purchased a small fridge to slide under the counter top.

I found a headboard for my bed by saving it from the dumpster when a neighbor moved.

salvaged headboard, only needed a couple of bolts to attach it.

I found a love seat this May when another neighbor moved once graduating from college and left it sitting by the dumpsters.

when it’s comfortable it will be used, and it is comfortable even if it was another person’s trash.

I reassembled a rocking chair and spruced it up with found paint to give people a place to sit in the shade.

the neighbors get their chance to use the chair when the kids vacate the seat

There was the desk I hated, it took up too much space and was worn.  being solid wood I had it cut down and refinished it to use as a night stand.

But what to do about my dishes that didn’t drive me nuts?  Well after searching for a cabinet that would fit in my apartment unsuccessfully, I finally bought a cabinet.  If you want to see how I stored the dishes click  here

Too many cabinets I found were too deep to fit in the apartment as they would have blocked the flow to the hall or wouldn’t fit at the end of the counter.  So here’s my final solution.

Finally the perfect fit

This is a Hemmes cabinet from Ikea. It’s only 14 inches deep, yes I measured the diameter of my plates to make sure it would work.  The thin design will keep things from getting pushed back and lost.  I also decided I knew myself pretty well and anything with solid doors would become a hiding spot for something I wasn’t sure where else to put. Translation: clutter magnet.

So this cabinet solved several problems.  I now store all my dishes, all my appliances, minus my slow cooker which didn’t fit in 14 inches, my pantry staples, books I held on to,  and even (bottom shelf) the extra blankets and bedding for company I had no where to put.

Yes,  I gave in and purchased something brand-new, and it took gas to get it as I had to drive to the closest Ikea, but to make myself feel better I combined the trip with a visit to my son and his family at the same time as they live only a few minutes from the Ikea.

While there I spent another $10 on a piece of art that I had been drawn to for a year now.  It now adorns the wall where the dishes used to hang.

Removing the shelves and hanging this made the room feel bigger

I was kicking myself for a few days until I realized that I may have compromised a little, but none of us are perfect.  And what made me get over myself finally was the peace of mind I feel when I come into my home.  It’s better organized, and I don’t have shelves which were right on the edge of a wall leading to the hall.  It always felt like a place that someone would get hurt one of these days.  My balance isn’t the greatest and the one corner was right at my eye level so I had to take extra care when walking past those shelves.

This experience has taught me that we all need  to be flexible when making a promise to ourselves.  Yes we need to take time for ourselves to be there for others, yes we need to put families first, and yes we need to put the environment before our whimsical wants.  Okay, my picture is whimsical, but it’s the only item on my walls that wasn’t hand made and it makes me smile.

Since my purchase came from Ikea there was zero waste.  The plastic wrapping was recyclable, and a neighbor took the cardboard to use to assemble puzzles on this winter.  Yep, I’m still trying to justify a purchase even though I completely adore it.

What areas of your life do you find you need to compromise in some small way the values you try to live by for you and your family to be happy?





  1. I hear you. I just had to compromise this morning and call an exterminator to deal with a bunch of wasp nests near my back door. I really hate to kill them as they can be beneficial in getting rid of other garden pests, but I’m allergic and it’s just not safe for me to have them right by the door where I have to walk in and out. Hate using poison, hate killing anything, and hated spending $100, but life is compromise. At least I found a locally owned company in the neighborhood to support.


    • I hate wasps! We had a problem with them making nests in areas of the siding on the building, we filled the spots with caulking and one we covered with duct tape. I too hate poison and killing things. But for you I believe you are right, you made the best choice with what you had available. There comes a time when I think we need to look at how careful we are normally and accept that we have to make sacrifices once in a while. To think some people use poison all the time….my sister hates spiders so she has an exterminator come twice a year so she doesn’t have to worry about seeing a spider when she goes into her basement! Don’t even get me started on weed killers!


  2. If it makes you smile, it’s worth it! I love your picture and your gorgeous family! I’ve made peace with my purchases because I found resisting was making me want them more. I just return more and shop a lot less than I used to. Pretty soon I’ll get tired of returning things, but for now, it’s solved the problem of the “forbidden fruit.” You are so inspiring in your 300 square feet. Can’t wait to read more!


    • Yes, I am happy to have made my purchase, but it took me a year to give in and purchase something new. I never really thought about buying something then returning it, but then I really do hate shopping so having to return something would mean another trip to a store 🙂 Thank you, I am very fortunate to have such a wonderful family.


    • Thanks, I did think about it a long time, searched for something else that would work as well, and even weighed the fact that the product was shipped to the US, and the fact that finally Ikea tries to be eco smart in their packaging and the weights they ship, so I gave in. I really do love it tho!


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