Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Mud Room Reveal

Another Renovation Reveal at the Coughlins is LIVE!

My mud room dreams came alive in this simple house renovation.  This project was low budget, caused minimal mess, was completed in a short timeframe (in comparison to every other room), and made the WORLD of a difference!

When the reno started back in January, our goal was to finish this project in 4-6 weeks. As timelines go, we got behind shortly after due to winter sicknesses.  Despite that, we picked away at the project little by little, night by night and weekend by weekend. A few hours here and there and suddenly the space was transformed in 2 short months.

In two months we replaced the plaster walls with sheetrock; tore out the red stair treads and added new pine treads; put in can lights and new electrical; added built-in cubbies; added a new railing; painted and polyed and filled holes. It was one of the most enjoyable house projects we've done so far - low stress, low $$, and such a visible difference.

Effective storage space was our ultimate goal for this project.  Lots of space for boots, jackets, hats & mittens. Plenty of cubbies and hooks to hang up our things when we come in the door. We even added shelving for all the miscellaneous house items. A nice, clean, crisp catch-all spot.

What we originally missed in a hall closet we have now found in this new mud room/stairwell. We could not be happier with the outcome!


Wall Paint | Sherwin Williams Eider White

Trim Paint | Sherwin Williams Pure White

Lobster hooks | Antique Store

Paddle | Brimfield Antiques

Tote Bag | LL Bean

Wicker Baskets | Target

Wire Baskets - Home Goods

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Home Body

I have become that person. That person who craves the security of being at home.  Who stands in fear at change and leaving my safe place if only for a week. A Home Body.

I used to be an adventurer. Traveling was my drug. Change was my way of coping with reality. Of figuring out who I was. I hopped on planes and boats at the drop of a hat, all with just a few duffles in tow.

But now I am a wife. And a fur baby mama. And I pay a mortgage and own a business. And these past 4 years in Rhode Island, of living out of drawers, has changed me.  After years of running around and trying to figure it all out, I feel at home, not only in our physical home, but in this place I am in life. I finally feel secure in my career path, whole heartedly devoted to my one and only, and in love with this sweet community of people whom we’ve come to call family. And in these 4 years I have watched myself evolve from an independent adventurer to more and more of a home body.

Moose is a Home Body too. The boy seemingly will have no energy at the start of a walk, but if you mention home, he sprints past you and looks back only to say “Hurry, Mom, lets go home!”. He knows home, his people, and the place he feels safest.  Moose has recreated my home – honestly, I didn’t know a dog could take up such a large part of my heart and redefine the meaning of home for me.

It took me by surprise this week. To tell Andrew that Moose was a Home Body, and then turn around and think, “well, hell, so am I!”. Mid-20s Maria would have laughed at this nearly 30 Maria. Like on the floor laughed at this 30-Maria who got on a plane today bound for the Caribbean and was sad to leave home. Sad to leave if only for one week. In fact, Andrew had to convince me to go and get on that plane. Umbrella drinks, dreamy Caribbean days, and hopping from one boat to another aren’t my home anymore.

And in some ways, this is a comfort to me. When I moved back stateside 4 years ago, I had just spent the previous 5 years of bouncing around and living the yachtie lifestyle, and  I didn’t know if I’d ever make it to this home feeling. The first few years were tough - I always felt that I was missing something better. That what I’d had was as good as it would ever be. That warmer weather can cure anything (which, sorry, it can, but living in the Caribbean isn’t all rainbows and butterflies either). That if I stop traveling and moving from place to place, that my dreams would end.  And I felt like that for a long while.

Somehow over time though, my perceptions changed, and I evolved into who I am today – a woman with ambition, compassion, determination and an adventuress soul who now craves home. I have this feeling of content and joy in my place in life. This is what I have been waiting for and what I was reminded of today. That my anxiety and discomfort with change, is only to remind me of where I am and how grateful I am for this place called home. And that the truth in my heart knows, “there are far better things ahead than we leave behind”.
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