If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors
to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with success unexpected in common hours.

~ Henry David Thoreau

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Advancing semi-confidently

"If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams..........."

I have used this quote from Thoreau as my motto for years, and now I have taken another step toward transforming ITLLDO into my dream cottage.

August 17, 2010

After sifting through magazine clippings, design books, and my own doodlings, I pulled the most important ones together and met with an architect last evening.  His first on-site consult was free.  I felt that he understood my ideas and, therefore, gave him a retainer after our meeting.  I will have concept drawings next week!!!

The cottage looks like this now.......

and this.........

a few ideas for him to work with....

This picture started it all......

Do you see the possibility?

tracing paper overlay.....

More of my doodlings..... ( an architect, I am NOT)

He seemed to get the gist of what I was looking for, and had some great ideas of his own.  I can't wait to see what he comes up with.

August 18, 2010

Wouldn't ya know....  another idea popped up in an email from This Old House.  Had to send this off to him.

A bit too grand for me, but I can just see this part of the transformation on the south side of the cottage....

Can you?

And then, I found this picture I had taken a couple of weeks ago on Lake Okoboji in Iowa. I watched this addition being built last summer when we visited.

Anything is possible.....right?

September 3, 2010

Well, more than two weeks has passed with no word from the architect, so I decided to give him a call.
He was available to meet this afternoon, so with great anticipation, I quickly pulled out my notebooks and awaited his arrival.

I must say, I was disappointed when he came with this one drawing. .......Hmmmm... guess we weren't on the same page afterall. 

I tried to keep an open mind, and eventually I realized what was most troubling to me about his concept....the pitch of the roof. It had lost the Cape Cod feel. This looks like a house, not a cottage.

Back to the drawing board!

Tune in next week for another episode of transforming ITLLDO.
Let me know what you think and I am open to suggestion, believe me!

I'm linking up with Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for Met Monday.  Be sure to stop by and see some great transformations.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Cottage Living Room Redo

This was the living room on our first visit.
July 2004

Another view looking toward the kitchen.

The living room after taking possession, cleaning out the stuff left by the previous owners, and giving it a fresh coat of white paint.....not so bad! Even the red Z-Brick with black grout looks better painted white.
(Check out that accordian door....painted that white too.)
September 2004

New windows were high on the priority list.
(Of course, we installed new carpet before making this decision)
October 2004

..and a sliding patio door certainly enhanced the lake view.
(So much for those freshly painted walls....Oh well, some insulation would certainly help)
Spring 2005

The wood stove was cozy, but it took a long time to heat the room.

A new propane fireplace in time for Christmas.
December 2008
(We live here now!....no longer a summer cottage)


But then the ceilings looked really bad.....Why do we always do things backward??

A bit of furniture rearrangement......
(Annabel loves the fireplace!)

A flat screen TV and new book case where the old wall furnace stood.
This is our tiny, cozy, winter living room.

Remove the slipcovers on the chair ....and the pillow covers....change out the picture over the fireplace...
and VOILA...

Our Spring Living Room!

Flowers from my garden

I think ITLLDO for now!

I'm joining Susan at Between Naps on The Porch for Met Monday.  Be sure to hop on over and see the fabulous makeovers.

I am also joining for the very first time The House in the Roses for Show off your cottage Monday.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Live in each season as it passes: breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit.                                   - Henry David Thoreau

A perfect day for lunch by the lake. 

Fishnet ~ Ross
Shell placemats ~ CTS
Plates ~ Marshall's
Shell water glasses ~ Kohl's
Sterling ~ English Provincial by Reed and Barton (my wedding silver)
Daylilly ~ Lime frost from my garden
Hydrangeas ~ Annabelle from my garden
Belgian Sea Shell Chocolates ~ Continental Chocolatier
Thank you Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for this wonderful blog party and your 99th Tablescape Thursday.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The View from my Shore

Today I am linking up with  Watery Wednesday.  Thank you for hosting.
The view from my shore

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

My Dish Room

I had taken over a bedroom in our tiny cottage when we moved to the lake and converted it to a pantry.  It was serving me quite well until I found these delightful tablescaping blogs....now it over-floweth.

This is my kitchen storage

See that doorway just behind the cabinets?  Welcome to my pantry.

Behind the door ~
My shelving is made by Plano which I purchased at Walmart.  It comes 4 shelves to a package and I cut the tubular legs on my mitre saw to the size I need.  I've reconfigured this little 8 X 10 room often.  I'm not sure it can handle much more, but it is great to be able to close the door on it.

back to the kitchen ~ a spot above the refridgerator for pitchers.

Now, these areas held all my dishes BEFORE I discovered tablescaping.  My new purchases found a spot on the floor.

another unit to the rescue ~ this one on wheels.

This has got to stop!!!

But how does one resist when the colors are so perfect?

I think ITLLDO needs an addition!!

Thanks for stopping by and a huge thank you to The Tablescaper for hosting this fun blog....You have gotten me in soooo much trouble ~ but how fun it is!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

First picnic of the season

What a glorious day for a picnic...the first of the season.  A simple tablesetting, using everyday china, old cotton tablecloths that have been washed so often they no longer need ironing, and the colors of the season, red, white and blue.

My garden is starting to bloom, mostly in blue.  A few sprigs of Bridal Veil Spirea, some geranium blossoms and blue Centaurea make a last minute centerpiece.  The lighthouse candle holders are a recent Christmas Tree Shop purchase.

It's more of a challenge when one prepares dinner as well as a tablescape.  Tonight our lake neighbors are joining us for a locavore dinner of Coho salmon, fresh from the lake, warm pasta and tomato salad, fresh roasted asparagus from the farm down the road, garlic toast and rhubarb pie.

An incredible sunset tonight....

and finally, the blue hour!!! 
I think ITLLDO.

Please join Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for some amazing tablescapes.  Thank you for hosting this fun party, Tablescape Thursday.