Thursday, December 27, 2012

Best of 2012!

Hello all! I hope your holiday was just wonderful!! Ours was great, I am counting my blessings. I’m slowly starting to function after feeling like a sloth for the past couple of days. I started a bit of decluttering last night and my Dad and I took the Bub out sledding this morning which was a BLAST. I can’t remember the last time I did that. :)

Today’s post is up late today because I’m still on Christmas break mode – and will be for the next week or so. I have both the hubs and the kiddo home and am loving it.

I love doing a year-end recap every year to look back on the bigger projects I’ve completed. When I look around our house that is a total and complete pit as I type right now, it makes me feel better. ;)

I rounded up the top ten, or twelve? projects of the year, based on comments, to share today. The first was my office redo, which started out like this years ago:

It was warm and cozy but not my style anymore. It took about a year (if you’ve been around for awhile the time it took will not surprise you) to complete the redo.

It consisted of a new wall board and batten treatment, new paint, craigslist furniture, Goodwill art and we ended up with new floors last fall too, which I LOVE. It took forever, but I ended up with a space that I just adore:

board and batten walls

gallery wall white frames

It is a pleasure to get to work in there every day, writing to you. :)

Our pantry got a redo this year too, thanks to melamine boards that replaced the no good, horrible, awful wire shelves:

pretty pantry stenciled walls

It has stayed pretty organized too, far better than any other time I’ve cleaned it out and reorganized it. Which has been quite a few times. :)

I found some funky moon chairs for the basement and gave them a inexpensive, quick makeover:

IKEA moon chair redo

And yes, they SPIN. The very best part!

Over the summer we had a HUGE job done that was a long time coming. We had the walls throughout our open floor plan painted for the first time in eight years. It was flat paint that desperately needed it. Oh yeah, and those flat walls were PINK:

cream desk homegoodsSherwin Williams paint

That’s the after on the right by the way, which should be obvious due to the lack of pink. :)

Part of the basement finishing process included a laundry room – I explained my reasoning in this post:

Some thought I had lost my marbles wanting to move the laundry downstairs, but I had a plan…a plan that luckily came together. It involved this big fat tube – our laundry chute!:

pvc pipe laundry chute

It pretty much rocks. my. world. Oh yeah it does. We still haven’t had anything stuck in there either, it works great.

You can see the latest on the new basement laundry room here:

basement laundry room

It’s coming together, slow but sure.

I completed a few projects in the family room this year – first up was my Pottery Barn knock-off art:

DIY pottery barn wood art

And then the painted Goodwill coffee table, which I love SO much more in it’s brighter state:

wood coffee table painted white

I had BIG plans for the kitchen this year that never happened, but I’m determined to make progress in 2013. I did finish up (yet another) island redo:

board and batten beadboard island

I think this was makeover number five? ;)

One of the biggest projects I completed this year, probably ever in our house was the built ins in our dining room turned library:

DIY built in bookcases butcher block

My Dad and I built them using kitchen cabinets as the bases and I am SO thrilled with how they came out.

I started out this year asking you all if I was crazy for thinking about losing the dining room and your responses here encouraged me to just do it! It almost took all year but I am so glad we went ahead with this project!

Of course, the biggest redo in our home this year was finishing the basement, which we hired out for (for the most part – I did the painting of the 800+ square feet and all of the baseboards). Even then it still took about six months to finish, just because we did chunks at a time. We still have to finish up the bathroom, the kitchenette and the laundry room is almost there. You can see more of the basement progress and projects here.

One of my favorite projects this year was one leading down to the basement – I love how the wood wall turned out:

DIY wood planked wall dark stain

We get compliments on it all the time – I am thrilled with the warmth and texture it gives what would otherwise be a boring stairwell.

Wow! I feel productive all the sudden, which is nice cause I’ve felt like a total slug the past few days. ;)

I love working on our home and love seeing it evolve over the years – it is one of my greatest joys to do what I do!!

Of course I cannot WAIT to get started on 2013!! We may not have Twinkies or Snoballs (sniff) but we will have some DIY! I have sooo many projects planned for the basement, and I really hope to make my plans for the kitchen happen as well. And then there’s the never-ending powder room and guest room that have sat half done for two years (more?). But first, I must declutter and get all of this extra STUFF out of my house!

I LOVE this time of year, don’t you? A fresh new start for everything.


  1. Just magazine worthy . I love it all and the cookies for santa too.. all of them .. Just a beautiful space that you have

  2. It's amazing how much you have done in the past year! I love your batten board treatment in the office and used it as inspiration for my entry and dining room. All those square boxes confused our painter and he thought we were crazy until he saw it all done. He even asked me where I got the idea. When I said an interior design blog he looked confused again, lol.

  3. You have been one busy lady!!! Lots of great projects accomplished this year for you. I have been toying with the idea of taking out the wire shelving in our corner pantry. Was it really worth it?? Mine never stays organized. It is filled with more food than anything else. Anything else.. small appliances and such are in the cabinets. Your basement looks fabulous. I am just a little envious, as I would love to have ours finished. Our projects this year entailed adding a laundry tub and cabinets in the laundry room and a sprinkler system. We hired someone to trench the lines, but DH made all the connections and installed all the heads, valves, timer. On the list still is tile on the laundry floor and a board and batten wall treatment in there.

  4. Awesome job! My husband and I together tried to list everything we've done on the house this year over Christmas dinner, and we also felt a lot more accomplished when we detailed it all out. My favorite is your office, by the way - LOVE those walls and the wood floors.

  5. I know what you mean about getting stuff cleared away before starting projects. I'm itching to get going while I am on school break, but I need to deal with holiday stuff first. You have done some great projects and my favourite is the basement stairs. Love the rustic touch the wood adds.

  6. So much accomplished in just one year - you SHOULD be proud! After all, you have a family and a blog to look after ;). I have been inspired by your decorating style, and taken bits and pieces of it into my own home. Hubby just loves our gallery wall and I never would have thought of it without you. Happy 2013 - keep up the great work!

  7. Sarah, you and your home inspire me to keep making mine...mine! I love the B&B in the office and that's the plan for my back hall! Looking forward to another year with you!

  8. Amazing Sarah! And, I too have seriously thought of moving our laundry to our basement!! However, with just the two of us at home now it isn't as bad as it used to be.

  9. You home is so dreamy! I just want to go tear mine apart and start all over. Not sure how hubby would feel about that!

  10. So many great projects! You have completed a lot this year!
    Can't wait to see what 2013 holds for you!

  11. I love some of the DIY projects here. That kitchen island is stunning.

  12. I've followed your blog for more than a year now and you are such an inspiration! My hubby and I just bought our first house and I'm always checking your blog for new ideas. Thanks so much for sharing!

  13. I hear ya on the sloth thing! The improvements you have made on your house are outstanding and inspiring! Rock on! Looking forward to following along in 2013!

  14. Those were some mighty big projects you took on last year and they all turned out great!

  15. You have done lot of work this year. Well done!! Hope to see few interesting projects in the coming year as well.

  16. You are such an inspiration! We bought our first home this year and your blog inspires me to think we can truly make it *our* home :)

  17. This is great! I'm new to you, so I hadn't seen a lot of these projects, and they're gorgeous! Happy New Year! I love this time of year too!

  18. You have done a lot... and it's beautiful. You are so talented. I can paint, and make my home cozy, etc. But, I wish I had the "know how" to use all the tools, measure, build, etc... as you do!


  19. Sarah,
    I am ashamed at how many of these re-do's I have missed on your blog! Seriously? Are we even friends? :)
    Chatting on facebook makes me feel like I know what is going on in your life, but sadly, I think I've missed a lot! I love all of your projects, and your home is amazing. Let's plan another little "chair makeover" so I can come up and stay with you again soon. Like, seriously.
    Love you!

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  21. Everything looks great! I plan on doing some of your board and batten in the entry way this next year and we are going to cover our patio. Have a Happy New Year.

  22. Wow, all you've accomplished makes me feel like I haven't achieved much this year. Love the library bookcases you did and the office make over, it's so much brighter now.

    Best wishes for another great year in 2013!!


  23. Love it all, especially the office redo. My favorite part is the blue painted ceiling. I have to try that this year. It really makes such a difference.

  24. You are seriously one very talented lady!

  25. It all looks just fabulous! I MISS seeing all of your wonderful ideas come together when I'm out of the blogging loop!

    I'm counting on some good inspiration to help me get my baby nursery done before she gets here in February!

  26. Thanks especially for your sense of humor in your posts. I adore your tips on home design but your personality makes it truly enjoyable to read.

  27. Giiirrrrrllll, you had a busy year! Loved every single project...and can't wait to see what you come up with in 2013! happy happy friend!!! xo

  28. This is just what I need and it might kick me into gear to get started with with some painting in my kitchen and dining room!

  29. This is great, thanks for sharing! My fiance(soon to be hubby) have big plans to redo the bathrooms in our condo (they're brown) and update the kitchen cabinets hopefully!

  30. Um, yes, I'd say you were productive! That is A LOT for a year!!

  31. I just came across your blog and have loved looking around! I love your references in various posts to Dave Ramsey too. :-) I will be back...can't wait to follow along!


    P.S. Great name by the way!


I LOVE your comments, thank you! (I read every single one.)

If you have a specific question I will do my best to answer you back here! Be sure to check out the FAQs tab at the top of the site and my Projects page for paint colors and DIY projects as well.

THANKS so much for reading!