Marley’s room: before, during and current

I won’t say before, during, and after because it’s not quite done yet… still some little things to take care of. However Marley’s room is the one bedroom at this point that is just about done ✅ so let’s take a trip down memory lane at what this space used to look like, to what we have today.

Top of the steps, turn right, enter Marley’s room! As you”ll see below, the original space was wide open with a slider and small deck, which overlooked the driveway. Then there was a small powder room was up there as well, to the left of the slider.

Original room had 2 twin beds

Original space: emptied

Demo begins: walls down and insulation out

Ceiling out, powder room gutted completely, railing removed, new plumbing prepped for the new bathroom and new electrical throughout.

Sliding door out, electrical was finished, new windows went in and walls went up (time span from Feb – April 2017)

Windows in, carpet down, fan up –

And we moved in! June 2017

Color!!! Her favorite color is yellow 💛


Lesson learned in the paint department. Never ever buy flat paint. Ever!! There is no good reason for this paint the exist. However we made a big accident and ended up buying about 5 gallons of various paint for the house in flat. It’s horrible!! Marleys room already has so many scuffs and marks – it will have to be redone sooner than later. And the other paint that was purchased for the entry, the 1st floor, and the downstairs bathroom are all trash. 😖 Hence the delay on any more house painting and being just completely frustrated about it all!! 


Back at it – with a power washer 

Summer is over and the projects begin again. A lot has occurred in the past 3 months but not a whole lot of house updates. A little here and there (I’ll do a few updates at another time) but this is a weekend we had available to get some sh*t done – and that’s what we did! 

Living on a lake is an interesting place. Did you know they draw down the water a few times/year? Yup, the Lake Association opens the gates by the dam which allows the Lake water to flow down into the streams and lakes below, then the water will drop by 2 feet. The water going down that much allows homeowners to get work done on the lakefront exterior. So – the draw down happened last week and we wanted to get the walls and fence cleaned up, and redo the steps. One cheap weekend power washer rental later and we are making this wood look brand new again! 

A little before and after comparison-

Some more of the before pics – notice the water line on the wall below. That shows how low the water is from the drawdown. Water will begin to fill up within a few weeks. 

Steps before cleaning – 

Let’s get to it!! 

​Now that the fence wood is clean, we will sand it lightly and apply some paint or stain. Still undecided 🤷🏻‍♀️ and that part will be a spring project…

Next it was time to jump in the coooold water to do the wall. Outside temp was about 55• – water temp is about the same. 

The walkway stones have color! 

Clean steps ready for repair and a clean wall ready for some life 👌🏼⭐️

Little things

A bunch of random little things have been done, and sometimes it's those little things that make a big difference ❤️

I relined the kitchen cabinet shelves-

Bathroom updates:
The vacuum is hung (which actually makes getting it in/out so much easier!)

We have blinds!! Sorry neighbors, we get to enter/exit the shower in private now!! Also got the towel rack hung and toilet paper roll hung ✔️✔️

Blueberries anyone? Apparently this is nothing. Lots more to be found out there on the lake!! I foresee lots of blueberry recipes in my future!!

A great little find for my entrance. Key holder, hat holder, stuff holder.

Our first floor bathroom not only has a mirror now, but also a toilet paper holder and blinds!! Privacy while peeing and showering is a beautiful thing! 🛁

The little things will continue. Outside is a never ending cleanup project and the acorns are already starting to fall 🌰

Next up is the ongoing mission to organize and setup a temp space in the garage / aka the loft, as we are calling it. In addition I want to get more trim painted and start on Jacksons room……

The last 4 weeks

I saw a video that my iPhone put together the other day and it included a slideshow of pictures, complete with a cute song, of my past 4 weeks. The video was about 4mins 30seconds long — and isn't amazing how in 4 and a half minutes you can have such a range of emotions? From smiling, to out loud cracking up, to sweet somber "awww"'s, to happy tears by the end. Summed up, the past 4 weeks of my life have been a dream. 🦋💆🏻🌤 All the while our unpacking, renovations, and general everyday house work have been cruising along – as I live in a dream 😃

Let's see: week 1 we waited for our furniture to deliver, floated in the lake, and got settled with what we brought up.

Week 2, my mom was here for a few days but it was all before our stuff delivered, so we basically camped in our own house with a guest. So we floated in the lake, painted the bathroom, and then by the end of the week our furniture finally delivered! As did our washer and dryer. We floated, swam, boated, made fire pits, and floated some more.

Week 3, beginning we unpacked and I feel like the beginning of this week was an absolute mess. Boxes and stuff were everywhere. Poor Jackson didn't even have furniture or a bed, so he had mattresses on the floor and clothes in piles. Then we have about half the kitchen cabinets for plates and glasses so I'm feeling like I have way too many things and not enough space. Our bathroom has zero space to store towels and the plan is to build cabinets, but until then I have towels in a pile. 😣 The beginning of this week was stressful and overwhelming.

So I tried to stick with my routine of workouts, I float some more, and ALSO enjoyed some fun Jackson moments: we got him enrolled into school (yay!!) and he lost his first tooth! In addition the Westminster police stopped by randomly and spent some time with the kids. It was all a very cool experience. Small town living at its finest 😃 We swam some more and I started giving Jackson some swimming lessons in the lake. He's alllllmost an official swimmer….! 🏊🏻 Our kayak also delivered this week, which is super awesome and something we've been looking forward to for months!! Thanks to our family who all chipped in and got us the money to buy one!! 🙌🏼 By the end of the week we had no boxes in the house and everything was finding it's place. By the end of this week it was absolutely feeling like home 🏡

We are just wrapping up week 4 and we've had lots going on. Marley's bedroom got painted just in time for my BF Theresa came to visit. (Now that her room is almost complete I'll do a separate update showing that progress – teaser! 😉)
Also just in time was Jacksons bedroom furniture delivery! The bed arrived the day Theresa arrived – actually the evening , 6pm delivery if you can believe that. So Jeff worked until late in the night getting this bed together so the kids could bunk together and our guest could have her own room.The dresser arrived a few days later – so this is what we are currently working with. This room still needs a lot of attention (paint, curtains, storage, everything!) but a great improvement and sense of organization.

A huge improvement from before ☝🏼

We did a lot more relaxing, floating, boating, swimming, and exploring this week – more than any other probably because of having Theresa in town. But it was so worth it!! What a fun summer week!!

 Renovations on pause 

Our stuff has arrived!! 10 days after pickup, the movers finally showed up.  I’m so relieved –  we were fortunate to have everyday things to use like pots and pans, plates, glasses and silverware, mattresses and eventually we got laundry. But we are all ready to eat a meal at a table indoors, to sit on a couch or chair, and to have our dresser drawers to put clothes into. Life -can -resume! 

The beginning of the box unloading and the end of box unloading 

Then there’s the garage 🙈

We’ve been bringing up boxes for the past 5 months and storing them in the garage. In fact, as we’ve emptied the house and basement along the way, everything has been sent to the garage. Thankfully the space is massive, but wow do we have a ton of work to do organizing this space. I see it as a winter project. But here’s what it looked like before the movers came Jeff’s grandfather was a big golfer which is what the net is all about. He used this space to practice his putts and we’ve just left it. 

Eventually we see this space getting finished off (floors, electrical, walls) and using it as a combo office / playspace / workout space. Stay tuned for those project updates to come… in a few years! 🤞🏼

3 hours after they arrived, the movers were folding up their blankets and cleaning up tape. Everything was unloaded and setup!! …now the real work begins: unpacking and figuring out where the heck everything is going to fit! 

But by the end of the day it felt so great to have our couch and a familiar space for the kids to eat 

24 hours after the movers arrived we are in pretty good shape. All of the kitchen boxes are put away –

Although this kitchen might be the death of me. We’ll see how long I can last with this unusable and outdated kitchen. The space is horrendous and wow am I donating a ton of stuff that I just paid to move here 🤦🏻‍♀️🤷🏻‍♀️ On the bright side – it feels so so good to have OUR stuff here. Our coffee pot and toaster over, our silverware, etc… I look around and it is starting to feel like home. Although we’ve said so many time just today: “let’s just put this here, for now…” it feels comfortable here. It’s feels right! And the day are flying by! We’ve already lived in the house over a week.  

Next up – 🎨 painting and bedroom unpacking. 

Bathroom pics: before, during and after

Before renovations: 

Original space: emptied


During: walls down and floor laid out. New plumbing, new electric ⚡️ 

Plaster walls and ceiling 

Tile down and pocket door installed  Fixtures are in! 

And currently: room about 90% finished. Paint on the walls and washer/dryer installed. Cat boxes in place and bathroom operating for everyone as it should 🚽 🚿 Want to add some cabinets around the W/D but that will be down the road. Just waiting on the blinds and towel racks to be delivered and we'll be good to go. Room 1 almost ✔️

We’ve got color

Lime Granita color to be exact! 

The first 5 days of living on the lake has been a-ma-zing!! ❤️ it may help that it is a holiday weekend with the 4th of July a few days away – the lake is alive like I’ve never seen it!! Despite the flurry of boats and people around us, we’ve been as productive as possible and enjoying getting settled in our new house. 

A few boxes have been unpacked, mostly the few kitchen things we brought ahead of time. But still no furniture or movers delivery yet, so we’re living out of suitcases and sleeping on mattresses on the floor. It’s been a mix of work and play this week: The kids and I found a great trail in Leominster State Park and also got ourselves a membership to Wachusett mountain. Then it was back to work with needing to find a paint color for the 2nd floor bathroom and get that room ready for washer dryer install on Friday 7/1. A lime inspired the color of the room, wanting something bright and attractive from the entrance since the wall is visible from the first floor too. Lime Granita it is! W/D got delivered just as the paint on that side of the room was finishing, but of course we didn’t have the correct things needed for install so the it couldn’t be done. 🤦🏻‍♀️ Back to lowes and reschedule the install for Sunday. Gave us a little time to play some more and neighbor Mary invited us out on her boat! So much fun! Mary has lived here for 40 years and literally knows every single person around this humongous lake! She was telling us story after story – so funny!

The boat ride around gave us a great view of our house 🏡💙 and you can tell we had tons of time in the water with all of the toys and floats in the yard. I remarked that to Mary and she says “it makes the pictures look interesting!” Nighttime comes and we had a front row seat for 3 different fireworks shows over the lake 🎆🎇 what a crazy fun way to start our first weekend in the house! Sunday morning lowes arrives again for install and thankfully the second time was a charm – we can now do laundry!!

Here are a few other minor details from around the house-

Bedroom ceiling fan 

Exterior light

We are probably going to hang the Robillard sign here

Some potted plants

And we let the cats out. They are getting settled, not trying to run away anymore, have found and love the big windowsills! 😻