Chris and I just got back from an 8 day trip to Cancun! We booked the trip to the new Secrets Playa Mujeres there last year before we knew about Chris’s back surgery. After the surgery and his recovery at the beginning of this year, among a few other things, well, the vacation couldn’t have come at a better time. We went with Chris’s siblings and their spouses and his parents and it was a blast, despite missing the girls terribly. We both feel rejuvenated and ready to finish off the year with a bang.
A kitchen bang. Yes, we are finally starting the kitchen. Eeee!!! To be honest, there was a big insurance issue at the beginning of the year and Chris’s back surgery was not covered. It was a HUGE bill and required us to push the kitchen renovation back until that financial burden was under control. Now that it is taken care of, and we were able to step away from the blog and social media over the last week (I literally took 2 photos all week!), we couldn’t be more excited to dive into the kitchen. But before we do, there are a few thoughts that we’ve had about the project, the blog and blogging in general that have been on my mind.
I blog because I love to tell the story of renovating our home. It’s sometimes messy, mistakes only make the story better–and I guess it’s more of a novel because our renovation is rarely concise. Every once in a while, I enjoy posting about a quick project I’ve done around the house, but this blog is anything but a before and after blog or a content generator. There’s a lot of really great, inspiring blogs saturating the blogosphere that will feed your need for those things, but when I heard from one of the most popular DIY/Craft bloggers that she literally throws projects away after they are produced and photographed for her blog–I needed to take a step back and reassess if this was something I really wanted to be a part of. I’ve slowed down my posting and decided as popular and lucrative as those blogs are, I don’t want to be that. I don’t want to make a wreath or spray paint something or throw a party, or buy a house just because I need something to post. I want our home to be filled with intentional decisions and only things that would be here regardless of whether this blog existed…or not. I know before and afters are the juiciest, but to only show you before and afters of this house and the renovations that go on in here–it feels unjust. I fear that some blogs are creating an unrealistic picture of what it’s like to DIY or renovate a house, and maybe worse, creating a sense of entitlement with readers that if a post isn’t a dramatic before and after, a DIY they can do this afternoon, perfectly styled or professionally shot, the post isn’t worth reading. DIY isn’t always instant. In fact, it’s intensely time consuming, a bit chaotic and also, really incredibly rewarding. That’s why we do it.
So as we start our kitchen renovation, our biggest project yet (!!), I wanted to express–1. it will take a few months–we are starting demo this week and have given ourselves a beginning-of-October deadline. We’re shooting for an 8 week completion time, but are already factoring in something going wrong–because something always goes wrong. Having it finished for Chris’s birthday (what a gift for a man who loves to cook, right!?) and our annual Halloween party in October is the real goal. 2. There will probably be a lot of posts about it because we’ll be documenting everything in real time, as it happens. If you feel like I’m just blabbering on or posting too much about the kitchen, I promise I will take no offense if you skip the post. Remember, we’re developing a plot line here. ;) 3. Our style isn’t everyone’s style–and thank goodness!–because I’d like to think it’s what makes this blog world go round.
We are so excited! We tweaked a few of these kitchen plans over the last couple months and then spent a lot of our vacation just grinning from ear to ear about the upcoming changes to our home. We feel so fortunate to be able to do this and so happy all of you are along for the ride.
Psst–laundry room afters later this week!
We designed the Charly line of sofas, chairs, and ottomans with perfect proportions for comfort — with wide arms, a loungey depth, and stylish and practical lumbar pillows. Available in 70 kid-friendly, pet-friendly fabrics, this line was created with families in mind.
Our wood grain Shaker cabinet fronts were designed for busy, high-traffic homes like ours. Clad with durable textured thermofoils, this line is compatible with Sektion, Akurum, Godmorgon, and Besta cabinets from IKEA. It's the perfect, practical way to add the warmth of wood to all the rooms of your home.
We have teamed up with Loloi to create a line of rugs that are as affordable as they are beautiful. This collection houses a great mix of traditional and modern rugs, in cottage-y colorways, as well as vintage-inspired beauties that you’ll want to roll out in every room.
We partnered with Stuga on a line of hardwood floors — The Ingrid is really livable, and the color is very neutral. It doesn’t lean warm or cool, it’s that just right in-between. We have really loved putting it everywhere in our house. It’s the best jumping-off point for design, no matter your interior style. In addition to being beautiful, Ingrid is really durable — we have three kids, and we always have a home construction project going on. Ingrid stands up to it all.
Looking for our favorite things? A place to shop our home room by room, or just catch up on what Julia's wearing / loving right now? Browse the CLJ shop.
Befores, afters, mood boards, plans, failures, wins. We’ve done a lot of projects, and they’re all here.
We have a long-standing relationship with DIY, and love rolling our sleeves up and making it happen.
Even when you don’t want to rip down a wall, you can make that space in your home better. Right now.
When you’re gearing up to try something new, whether it be jumping off a cliff into a cool lake, expecting your first child, or buying a new home, you need a cheerleader in your corner. You know, a hype girl saying you got this! It’s going to be great! You can do it! I’m here […]
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