Pottery Barn Aesthetic

Are they copying me? I do see a lot of items in this pottery barn catalog that I already had here @ the northern cottage – I’m just saying.

I guess that means I’m in style now & maybe a little ahead of the curve rather than just copying them – which feels kinda cool.

but at the same time – they are making a boatload of dough selling this stuff we got on the cheap. That doesn’t seem fair.

I certainly have the pb aesthetic. I love the uniqueness of their displays & have always styled the similarly though on a budget.

Here are examples from around the northern cottage compared to the PB catalog:


Mine --


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PB version:

Compared savings -- PB $29 – mine $2.74 at Target years ago


Mine in various locations throughout the house: DSC02467 DSC02473

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PB (not for sale but cool display I think):

One of my faves - a BIG aquaish jug/jar that is almost 3 feet tall…..love it! Look @ all the money we have piled in it (that is our trip fund we’ve just started! Looks like we have some more saving to do if we’re gonna leave our driveway!)



and PB version:

Savings -- PB $199.00 – Mine = $5.00!!

Wall System


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Hooks on a board + pushpin/chalkboard combo + clock + stool in a previously unused corner of our backdoor entryway.

Major score with organization here – LOVE, LOVE, LOVE that the kids can hang up their own stuff.

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PB Mailbox wall hook (ok so this is a pretty cool set up!):

I have more images to share --- to be continued….

Chat soon dearies -


Linking here:

Frugalicious Friday

Fireplace Freshening

Our fireplace needed some freshening.
Took everything down & started anew:
Wanted more graphics, more blank and white, silver (my winter thoughts) – just gathered different items from around the house.
Here’s the result:
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home decor 031Here is the before – I loved it this fall – very cozy & warm (with my little old NEST banner I made out of coffee filters).
But for winter – I wanted a lighter, more vivid feel:
I’m already looking forward to putting together my spring version soon – I’m, in fact, in denial that winter has it’s hold here for another 2 1/2 full months!
{melt snow – melt! - sigh}
Chat soon -
Linking this old post to Funky Junk Interiors SNS

Garage Beauty

Is there such a thing?  Garage = Beauty = Love?? 

Most people don’t think of their garage as a beautiful thing but me…oh yeah.  I think so!

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We built this garage ourselves…from clearing & preparing the land to framing walls, installing windows, soffits, running the electrical , installing lights, garage doors, putting in the driveway, etc.    Note that ‘we’ is mostly my talented hubby (who is in business by trade not carpentry or building, etc so it makes me so much more impressed & proud of our results).

I was there with him every.step.of.the.way & got good blisters from my {own, personal} hammer!!  I even had a cute toolbelt to keep my nails in!

** blood, sweat & tears were invested in this garage – well… not quite sweat = yeah

blood = just a little bit &

no tears at all!


Backtrack to earlier this summer --

The first thing we did was get the land ready – that mean lots of clearing & we brought in A LOT of sand (I mean a lot!!)  Do you know how hard it is to spread sand?  Yeah - quite seriously heavy.  We got a big pile (or 3 + BIG piles) dumped nearby & would shovel it from the pile into a trailer & then dump that where we wanted it & then rake that out.  whew!  See this is where sweat started to show – oh I mean perspiration!


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Actually the first thing we did was put together the kids swingset -- so they were ‘occupied’ & having fun while we toiled.  Don’t get me wrong -  we MADE them ‘help’ us a lot too.  Which actually is more work for us but so worth it in the long run, we think.  They were 5 & 7 this last summer while we did most of this work but we definitely worked together on it.  They also made use of the sand pile every,single.day.  Digging, playing, sliding, etc. – good sand pile memories!  I’d suggest every kid have a sand pile at their disposal.  Way better than tv all summer long!




ok – back to garage --- so we had the cement poured for us (boy was that nice to watch other guys work!) but from there we build the walls & on up.

But everything else was us – we used these ladders extensively -- 



We stained every single piece of siding & trim --

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It kept us busy ALL.SUMMER.LONG – & into the fall as well. 

As we were wrapping up, we found out that the lot next door that was not going to be built on when we bought our land is – guess what?  yep, being built on – right next to our house.  But the good thing is that our new garage blocks some of that construction stuff & we’re hoping for wonderful neighbors!!  I need someone close by to borrow a cup of sugar from (I hope whoever buys it are those kind of sugar sharing people!)


In tandem with the garage construction, we also put in an outdoor boiler which has made a huge difference in our heating bills (seriously thousand + less)  and the garage has heated floors too.  So it is cozy warm in there.  Great workshop, toy storage, mechanic’s den space. 

We want to put up a screen/fence of some sort to block the view of the outdoor boiler & to offer a bit more privacy from the new house being built.  On the to-do list….among other things

As you can see we have a little left to complete when the weather warms up – final siding in front, stairway to access upstairs room, landscaping around, etc.  The inside is heated so we’ve already done some car repair stuff in there & little projects but oh boy – do we have plans!!!….LOTS MORE PROJECTS TO COME IN THE FUTURE FROM THIS LOCATION!!

All in all – we love it. 

Chat with you soon -


Also -- Meet our snowman – we named him “BLOB” ---


this post inspired by --

Funky Junk's Workshop Series

Little Blanket Love

We don’t need a special heart day around here to show the love.

I finally made one of those tied fleece blankets.

Every evening here is our routine….kids off the bus home from school , hands are washed, backpacks are sorted through, snack is complete, after regular homework is done – we set the timer for 20 or 30 minutes & grab a book to read. Good practice for the kiddos & some downtime after a hectic time of day for all of us. We’re together doing this but also each reading on our own.

So I figured I made a blanket for this special time. There is such a selection of cute cozy fabrics to choose from to make these & there was a sale – always good to find a sale!

Baby Girl & I went on a girl shopping trip to the fabric store (the boys for some odd reason were not interested in joining us in the material store so they went to Best Buy next door).

I let her pick her own fabric. I was {SCARED} it might be some very cartoony power puff girls or weird bald eagle flying in blue sky but my sweet 6 year old picked out a cute heart pattern (not quite what I would have chosen but I wanted it to be hers).

I got a yard each of her 1) chosen fabric & 2) a coordinating solid

When I got home – cut it to square (or close anyway!)

I held the ends together with office binder clips (remember right sides out if you have a right side on your fabric)

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Started cutting strips about an inch apart & about 4 1/2 inches deep.DSC02417 DSC02424

Then start tying the front with the back in a double knot

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More in production for my 8 year old son & my cottage sister too.

I got to pick the fabric for my son’s blanket – {consequence of his not setting foot in the fabric store with us!} :)

I think he’ll like it anyway!

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Check out this awesome vintage looking fleece I found for my sister!! Cherry! home decor 036 home decor 037 Just something special to make for my kiddos to cuddle up with to accomplish this reading time!

Chat soon -


linking up to Kimba's DIY:


and Get Your Craft On: