I have been working with a friend over the last 2 years…I know, that sounds crazy when I type it, but yes…2 years, on a total cabin reno project.  The reasons it has taken so long have been many.  1.)  We had Jules within that time.  2.)  It was a COMPLETE gut/remodel job. 3.)  We did a lot of the work ourselves, and 4.)  It is their cabin, and they are busy as well, so it was easy to not always make first priority.  I must say though, it has been one of the most fun projects I have done because….

1.)  The surroundings are beautiful!  (It’s on one of the most desirable lakes in MN)

2.)  I love the couple, it always pays to work with friends:)

3.)  I have never in my life been able to just go shop for whatever I wanted for the look in a short period of time and see it come together so fast.  I know….to me 2 years is fast:)  I love the DIY-ing and the hunt and the thrill of a good deal, but this was a little dreamy to just pull it all together and not have to worry about everything being a steal all of the time.

So, enough yapping, lets get to the eye candy.  I took a few before pics on my iphone but they aren’t the best.  You will definitely get an idea of what she started out looking like and an appreciation for how far she came.

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Of course the hubby of this cabin thought there was nothing wrong with all the pine tongue and groove, and quite honestly it would be a dream cabin for my hubs as well.  But you know how wood and I get along.  Can you tell this is going to be a fun project?!?

Here’s the after….

cottage living room

Sorry boys, the wood had to go.  They had all the walls and ceilings sprayed, which gives an amazing finish, and we used Benjamin Moore’s Simply White in satin.  They also redid the flooring (which looks a bit familiar:) and added big chunky beams to break up the a-frame architecture and make it feel more cottage-y than cabin-y.

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The furniture came from Pottery barn, and we scored a lot of the pillows from Home Goods and Pottery Barn.


This project was fun because I did get to still DIY quite a few of the things…like these paddles on the wall…


We found them at Home Goods as well and they actually had writing on.  I flipped them around, added rope, and painted the stripes to match the rest of the living room.


The shelf on the right was also a DIY .

This was another before of the kitchen before we got our hands on it.

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And here’s the after….


The fridge is in the same spot to help you figure out the remodel.  They went with a complete new kitchen, with marble counters and farmhouse sink.  Yours truly was able to DIY the marble subway tile backsplash with my mad tile cutting skills;)


But I am so in love with this kitchen!

Another before…

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and after….


I mean, look at that island!


And open shelving!

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And it flows so nice into the living room.


From here we go upstairs where there used to be carpet..


and now there are cute little numbers to help you count your way:)  Trust me, we heard it from the guys on this one!

At the top of the stairs is an open loft where we needed to create a unisex bedroom since they have two girls and a boy.


The bedding came from Pottery Barn, except for the monogrammed Euro pillows I made to separate the beds.


And then they have a cute kids bathroom up here as well..


The vanity is a Martha Stewart one from Home Depot.



We had  a challenge trying to figure out a mirror for above it since there is a window in the way.  We ended up finding a hanging mirror at Home Goods and the guys figured out a way to make it stay.  I think it’s perfect!


And aren’t the chandeliers fun!  We have a matching one downstairs as well.  They worked so well with the high ceilings.  The trunks came from World Market, we just stenciled the numbers on cause they needed a little extra “something.”

And if you ask me, the kids have the best view in the place…


Out those windows all you see is lake and trees.  Gorgeous!

ps. this was the loft before.  Have I won over any other wood lovers yet?!?

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On the main level is the master bedroom where we added board and batten.

board and batten

The bedding again is pottery barn, except for another little Whimsy love…

xo pillow

And how much do we love that little apothecary nightstand from Target???

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Down the hallway is the cutest bathroom..

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We planked the ceilings in the bathroom, hallway, and laundry room.  I’m still jealous!

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These are the DIY $7 shelves I made and had fun staging them…

bathroom shelves

We used all artificial greens at the cabin since they aren’t here all the time.  But I love the pop of green it adds, with no maintenance.

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And at the end of the hallways is a laundry room to die for.

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At a cabin mind you:)

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it was starting to get dark so these pics aren’t the best, but isn’t she cute??

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I stenciled the drinks bin so they can pull that out when they have company and fill it with ice.  They also have a clean and dirty basket up top and a super cute sink.

Lastly and quite honestly maybe the best room in the house is the screened in porch overlooking the lake.


The ceilings were painted a light blue and the walls were all sprayed white as well.


We got the table and upholstered chairs from World market, the others are fun flea market finds…


I darkened this pic just so you can see how the lake is right.there.  Swooning.


And this is where you’d curl up and have your coffee in the morning, listening to the loons.


I think I could handle it:)


We added curtains all the way around and tied them with rope since they blew in the wind quite a bit if we left them.  This gives privacy and also some shelter if it does rain hard.


But I love how this is a whole extended living room…


I hope you enjoyed looking at this pics as much as I had fun creating them!  Thanks so much Kelly Jo and Joel for letting me be a part of this amazing project.  Cheers to getting to enjoy the lake…..finally!!:)

P.s. for those of you following along on my pregnancy journey, there was no new “news” at my appt.  And so we wait!  t-minus 2 1/2 weeks!!!

Warm Tootsies!!

If you’re not familiar, that’s what we call toes in our house:)  Our one other area that we splurged on in this was on something that can’t even be seen.  It about killed me but I knew in the long run we were all going to appreciate it so much.  And yes…we do:)

When we first bought this house it had radiator heaters in the bedrooms and one in the living room (which we have since taken out, spray painted white, and put back in….paint never ceases to amaze me:), and then they also had these great wall heaters that cranked out a ton of heat…but didn’t quite fit my decor.  Here’s a peak at them…

My hero:)  Here’s Ry now taking one of the heaters from the kitchen off the wall.

Here’s the other one in the living room…

Now, if you know my hubby, you know he can do just about anything.  But the one thing he specializes in is heating and cooling.  So, it just about killed him to have a house that he couldn’t have a furnace.  Now some of you may realize it off the top of your head but others may be saying…why can’t you have a furnace??  Well, back in the day they didn’t have furnaces so they never ran ductwork.  And to try to put duct work into a house that doesn’t have a full basement and tight quarters between levels is near impossible.  Let me tell you, Ry thought and thought an thought about how we could put one in…it just wasn’t going to work.  So, the next best option for heating was in-floor heat.  Usually this is quite an easy process if you are building your home, but in a pre-existing home it is a bit more challenging…and expensive!  But we decided it would be worth it! So, I’m going to give you a peak of what is under our toes on the whole main level…

Wow, some days I’m still amazed that we lived in this house like this…what a journey.  But anyway, the warmth under our toes is coming in from this maze of tubing under our feet.

here’s a better shot.  So this is what we layed under all of our flooring now.  Even though this stuff doesn’t look very pretty, it’s not cheap!!  Kinda a bugger.  It actually cost us about 4 times the amount that our actual flooring did.  When most people do in floor heat they put it in cement.  We couldn’t do that because our foundation was already poured, and it probably couldn’t withstand the weight of a layer of cement.  This is our only option.  So at about $5 a foot, we bought this.  Here’s how the whole thing works..

So this is the little boiler that heats our main level.  Boy am I in love with her. She pumps the warm water through those hoses that keep our feet warm!  Before we got this little guy up and running, and she wasn’t running until November…my feet would freeze!  If you’ve never lived in a house without a basement then you don’t realize that there is not much insulation under you, therefore the floors are always cold.  That’s how it was.  I would have my slippers on and my feet were still cold.  What a treat to walk down in the morning now onto warm floors.  It’s pretty much amazing!!:)  What’s also amazing is that my hubby can do all of this himself!  I am seriously amazed by you babe!!  This splurge set us back about $5000, but if we would have had to hire it out, it would have been more like $8000-$9000!! Now that’s quite a savings:)

So, we got to say goodbye to our old wall heaters and hello to warm tootsies!
This is how we walk around now:)

I just thought I’d show you the rest of them, and how we really look during the day.  Okay wait..I’m not that daring to put myself in this picture:)

So this splurge was definitely worth it.  For one it keeps our house at a comfortable temperature and even heat, and for two, it allowed me to take down those beautiful heaters:)  Gotta love that!!


Its been two weeks, and I don’t even have pictures!!  Here are my reasons…yes, I have reasons!

1.)  Paint

2.) Tile

3.) Paint

4.) Paint

5.) cleaning sawdust

6.)  Paint

7.)  No internet

8.)  Trying to use my sisters internet while having 2 kids run around is a bit challenging!

Okay, does that excuse my two weeks of silence???  Here’s what I can tell you.  I did get our bathroom tiled.  Challenging but rewarding.  Ry did get my vanity in, it’s beautiful and it’s the first time in 2 months that I don’t have to spit into the bathtub to brush my teeth:) all smiles!  And also Kynlees room is 99% complete, and let me tell you…the chandelier is stinkin adorable.  Yay! 

So, I told ry that we really need to look into getting our internet hooked up next week.  He agreed.  I am in the process of finding the best deal, so hopefully by next week I can blog from home and more often! 

I promise, pics are coming soon, please stay tuned!!

We Have a Bedroom….Sort of!

Alright, I know I have been gone for a long time, but all for good reason! We have been extra busy at work in the house with no Internet or tv to keep a girl busy, so what else is there to do?? Sheetrock you say? Yep, well…a little. I have to give most of the credit to ry, his buddies, and his dad. They have been a great help!! But…I did learn to cut and hang a few pieces myself, I mean everyone needs to know how to sheet rock right?? So, let’s get to the the fun part! I’m sure some are getting sick of seeing the before, but we just need to giVe the after due justice:) so, here she is…

ahhh…brings back the memories.  Low ceiling, beautiful carpet, etc, etc. :)

and the odd closets that split the room up.

Things are looking a little different…and brighter.  Yay!  So here she is all sheet rocked and ready to be primed and painted:)

This is looking in from the hallway.  So much brighter and open.

Here’s the closets.  The one on the right will be for washer and dryer, Ry already made a nice little platform in there that needs to be painted to set them on.  The one on the left is our closet.  If you notice we have nice natural light coming into the closets from that odd little window that was hiding down there.  I’m usually not a fan of covering up windows, but when they interfere with decorating then it’s a must:)  And hey, natural light is a great feature in a closet!

We moved the bathroom door over and made it full size, and Ry also threw in some built ins above the door to store off season clothes.  We’ll find a couple of cabinet doors to cover them up and it will add extra storage, something we can all use!

And my favorite part, the false dormer!  It turned out quite nice, even though the window is about a window above the rest…it acts like a nice sky light and does brighten up the room a lot!  I’m thinking a nice little seating area under there.  My slip covered chair might work well!  Ryan also wired it for a puck light up there, but someday I totally see a chandelier going in.  I can’t overwhelm him all at once:)  If I talk about it enough though, it won’t be a shocker when I do approach him!  Love you baby:)

So, that’s what we’ve got for now.  It just got sanded Sunday night, so I need to visit the paint store soon and go to town.  Once it is painted we are going to move all three beds in there (party in mom and dad’s room!) and set up camp.  With a roof over our novel!!  We are going to wait on carpeting until the rest of the house is ready for it, but we are hoping that’s only a month away as well.  As for a paint color, I’m thinking something like this…

It’s called Whetstone Gray.  You know, the new neutral!  I like it cause it is a great mix of the sharkey gray that my bathroom vanity will be, and a warmer color to cozy up the bedroom.  We’ll see, I might change my mind once I get to the paint store!  So, stay tuned.  I”m really going to try to keep up the posting since stuff is finally starting to get done:)

I’m Alive!!

Okay, so this has been my first official week of “camping” and with 80 percent dew point this week I have pawned myself and family off on any near relation around:)  I have been pretty optimistic about this so far, but I must admit….it is getting a bit draining living out of sheds/pop-ups/vans/etc..etc.   Just to get the kids dressed in the morning is quite an ordeal.  So–with that being said I wanted to tell you all to STICK WITH ME:)  There has been massive changes taking place at our house and I am going to show you some pics tomorrow, I promise!  I also have a few fun projects in the making that I’d love to share too!!  So, say a prayer for our family this week and stay tuned for tomorrow, you’re about to see a pretty impressive staircase in our kitchen.  (Only wood at this point, but much better than a ladder:)


It’s official.  We locked up the doors.  Wow.  Harder than I thought, especially when you have a little boy asking to go home and he can’t.  It was a good lesson for me though on how much I do find comfort in material things and my surroundings.  I am being stretched and learning that home is where your family is and sometimes it’s okay to venture out of your comfort zone.  It’s just hard to watch it affect your kiddos and not be able to explain it to them:(  So, instead of moving into the camper right away…the kids and I ran for the hills!!  :)  This nomad business is a little weird so where do I go when I need some familiarity??  Home, to Wisconsin that is.  I still call it home even though I haven’t lived here for 10 years.   It’s so good to relax and have a couch to crash on.  Thanks mom and dad!!!  And so far only being gone one day my hubby has GONE TO TOWN on the house:)  :)  It’s so fun to see the progress, I make him send me picture texts so that I can share them with you too!!  So, here’s the little rundown of the demo of the kitchen and stairs…




No stairs, or cabinets!!  to Finally 4th….

Sorry, this one was a picture text so it’s little, but notice the two landings!!  The stairs are almost done….just the last leg down:)

And also while we were/are still gone he worked on the master.  The last I left it it looked like this…

We got the closets out and the ceiling, but since this is the only low ceiling in the house we decided to bump them up a bit.  I thought we decided we’d bump them up to 10 feet (even though I just thought we should go all the way up:)  But Ry surprised me and bumped them to 10 1/2 feet.  Thanks for the 6 inches baby:)

Again, mobile upload…but you get the idea!!  I’m so excited about the slanted ceilings, such a change from the box we came from:)

So, while I stroll down the river on the pontoon, Ryan is working his tail off.  I know, it doesn’t seem quite right, but the kids are happy.  I’ll get back there soon to make the important decisions:)  Speaking of which, here is a sneak peak of the flooring we are going to go with….super excited:) :)

They have less of a warm tone and more of a cooler gray tone in person…weird what the computer does!! But the fun texture and distress makes them look super comfy and cottagey…I think I just made that word up:)

That’s all I got for now, oh, and a new listing under the for sale tab, check it out!

Demo Days!!

It’s official…I have pictures:)  The dust has still seized to settle!!  Here’s a little preview on what our last week has been filled with!

The before of the kitchen…

The progression of the demo…

We removed the pantry to the left and wall to the right…

All the plaster is gone, and all of the lathe, they finished that last night, just didn’t shoot a pic before I went to bed.  I know you can’t tell but I think I’ve swept and picked up this floor about 20 times now!?!  Ish…

The fireplace is gone, so is the brick.  It’s amazing how many layers some of these walls had!!

Free help, gotta love it!  Thanks Nagel!!

More free labor, and strong at that!  Thanks Cole:)

So, the reality is that we are going to be living in a pop up camper I think for a month or two…ahh!! This girl is not the camper type, so I have had a few tears over that. the long run I think we are going to have a pretty fun house when all is said and done…in another year:)

If you’re in the area swing by and I’ll let you take a few swings at a wall!  Lucky you:)