New Nest House Tour – The Main Floor

Now that you’ve seen the plan and the outside of the house, it’s time to show you around the inside. These photos were taken right before we moved in. I thought I’d give you the “clean slate” tour.

Since our move in November we’ve added lots of love and chaos (and furniture, of course) and I’ll show you some updated shots in another post. We haven’t done much decorating yet as we’re just living in the space and trying to figure out how we want the space to flow and what we need/want for each space. That list is getting longer and more specific every day, and the boys are begging me to decorate their rooms, so I suspect I’ll be busy this fall with adding some touches to the house that will make it feel even more like home. And what better time than fall than to cozy up the house?!

Foyer from stairs

Foyer and Stairs

The powder room is behind the door pictured above.

Family Room and Coffered Ceiling

The coffered ceilings in the family room is definitely the best bang for our buck item we put in the new house. LOVE!

Kitchen View 2

As you saw in the plan post we decided on a very open floor plan, particularly because we like entertaining (and also for keeping an eye on the kiddos). Hopefully you can see in these photos that though it is quite open, the spaces have some distinct separations. Like how the kitchen can’t be seen from the front door, and the dining room is tucked in the corner of the house – close to the kitchen but out of the way for a little dining privacy.

Kitchen View 1

Kitchen View 3

Kitchen sink

quartz close up

cabinets close up

Kitchen and Family Room


Butler's Pantry

Dining Room

Most of our finishes were selected from our builder’s selections so I don’t have specific details on all the items in the house, like the floors or doors. But here are some of the big items:

Paint colour: Sherwin Williams Repose Grey

Kitchen countertops: Caesarstone Bianco Drift

Kitchen sink: Kohler

All the light fixtures except the dining room: Canarm

Dining room light fixture: The Bay – Renwil Perugia


My chai and a print

Recently I visited my parents and they introduced me to an awesome little gadget that totally wowed me. Prepare to be amazed… Its a milk frother.

Yup, I love to have a chai latte and I have one just about every day. For years I’d been making chai with the steam wand from our espresso machine. Lately our espresso machine has fallen out of favour. Roland’s been opting instead for a “regular” cup of joe and the actual espresso press has gotten a bit finicky (read – not working), so we had a bulky espresso machine taking up valuable counter space, all so that I could use the steam wand.

How did I not know about this before?

When I added a basket full of recipes, it displaced the espresso machine to another part of the counter.

kitchen before 6

basket full of recipes

But now, it’s off the counter for good.

milk frother

And, what’s in its place takes up a teeny, tiny space. And that’s when its out. The beauty of the frother is that I can put it in the cupboard and neatly tuck it away. Countertop freedom!


Thanks so much to my parents for gifting this to me as a belated birthday present. They bought me this one by Cuisinart and the verdict is I love it! Its so much faster to make my chai now since I don’t have to wait for the espresso machine to pressurize and warm up.

my chai

Oh… and that print. Its a free printable (found here – with lots of other colour combos to match your colour scheme) that I’ve wanted to find a place for in the house for a while now. It has moved around a bit, but I love it right here next to my sink in the kitchen.

What I love most about my home is who I share it with… and my new frother. 🙂

A Basket Full of Recipes

I’ve made another simple update to our kitchen decor.

I was inspired by this image I found on Pinterest, and knew that if I could find a basket I had just the spot for it.

basket full of recipes

I found the perfect basket at, where else? HomeSense. I love that the cookbooks are out in the open and easy to see, and always there reminding me that there’s no reason to say I don’t know what to make for dinner. I put out some of my favourite cookbooks – ones that I use frequently and/or that look nice too. I have lots more still stored where these ones used to be.

It’s nice to be able to pick one up and browse through the pretty pictures, take a peek at a conversion guide, or just glance at a tried and true recipe just to be sure that I’ve got it right.

The kitchen mini-makeover continues. So far, I’ve also corralled our utensils and cooking oils in pretty dishes, and put down a red diamond runner in front of the sink.

Diamonds in the Rug

Does that title remind you of “Royals”? I love that song, but dang it gets stuck in my head all.the.time!

While Roland was away “on business” last week I picked up a rug at HomeSense. Actually, I picked up four rugs and brought them home and hemmed and hawed over which would be the lucky one that got to stay in my kitchen.

If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen that I hit the rug jackpot at my local HomeSense. Apparently the store just five minutes from my house has a great rug selection. Way better than the one across town. Score!

After I layed them all out, it was a close call, but after consulting with hubby by text (isn’t technology great?) we decided on this diamond pattern one.

diamonds in the rug

It’s just the right size for the space. A little softness under foot when I’m at the sink, a nice pop of colour and pattern. Not to mention a place to catch the drips between the sink and the dishwasher. Love it!

The kitchen chronicles continue…

The OK (kitchen) corral

Hope everyone had a great weekend. I had a wonderful visit, though short, with my mom, attended my sister-inlaw’s wedding shower, and got caught up on Breaking Bad – EXCEPT for last night’s episode. If you’ve seen it, I can’t speak to you.

I have a quick little update to share with you today. Just a little kitchen organizing and re-arranging to show you as I make my way through our kitchen mini-makeover.

Roland and the boys bought me a set of red Kitchenaid bakeware for Mother’s Day this year, and I knew that one of the dishes wouldn’t be seeing much of the inside of the oven. (I think we got it when it went on sale for 60 or 70% off. Don’t you love when Canadian Tire does that?)

kitchen corral

I’ve corralled our most used cooking items in the gorgeous deep red dish. Olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and salt and pepper. They are perfectly in reach when I’m at the stove.


I also picked up the Crate and Barrel Homestead Utensil Crock to keep all our utensils close at hand too. I love being able to see what’s there and just grabbing for it, rather than searching through a drawer with spoons and spatulas all mixed up. The link says it’s $25 CAD, but I’m sure it was only $20 when I picked it up in the store. Maybe it was on sale? Either way, I love it! So glad I snagged the last one in the store. I love that it has replaced the galvanized bucket we were using before. This is so much easier than the tapered bucket was, and I think it looks pretty sharp too!

Oh, AND, since bakeware can sometimes scratch stone countertops, I placed a little bit of no-slip paper that I had on hand from Home Depot, to keep the bakeware in place.

no slip

And, one last thing to keep it neat and tidy, I placed a paper towel inside to catch any drips, and put our pepper grinder in a ramekin to keep the little pepper crumbs all in one place, so I won’t be having to clean out the dish constantly. It should keep it a little cleaner a little longer.

pepper ramekin

A little dish goes a long way. Just in time to get me in the mood for fall cooking. Soups and crock pots here I come!

Kitchen starting point

Any good project needs a few “before” pictures. First, you can take a look at how the kitchen looked when we moved in almost three years ago, and a few snaps after we painted the kitchen. So here’s what my kitchen looks like today.

kitchen before1



Confession time: my kitchen doesn’t usually look like this. This is if-the-queen-were-coming-over clean. There’s usually fruit in a basket, mail on the counter, and dishes in the sink. Because they just.don’t.quit.

kitchen before5

Here’s the bulkhead wall above the railing that looks down onto our family room. It’s the most wall space (the only wall space) we have in the whole kitchen. And it just sits there all blank-like taunting me and begging me to decorate it. I’ve had a few ideas about what to put up there. I was originally going to frame some large photos of red fruit (because that’s the accent colour I want the most in the kitchen), but I guess I wasn’t 100% in love with that idea because I’ve taken the pictures and never went ahead and had them printed and framed. Then I saw these butcher chart prints at Z Gallerie and was waiting for a sale to snatch up all three, but again, a sale came and went and I didn’t pull the trigger so I guess I was having some doubts.

I liked the idea of the red fruit photos, because I could change them seasonally (or at least summer/winter). I liked the butcher prints because they were food/kitchen themed. Then, I had an idea. “How about chalkboards?” I said to myself. Self, that’s a great idea!

So here’s the plan (roughly):

kitchen before4

I’ll be able to change the boards to my whim and keep everything from Harrison’s masterpieces to my grocery list up there. I think I’m gonna love it.

Another part of the kitchen makeover is going to include a little bit of organizing, because this is happening:

kitchen before8

I have a baking dish that’s supposed to corral a few frequently used kitchen items like, olive oil, salt and pepper, but it has devolved into a catch all for clutter.

And this galvanized bucket has been used all over our house and is currently being used to hold our utensils, but I have something else in mind.

kitchen before 7

Other plans include possibly adding a runner in front of the sink and finally sewing up that valance from the fabric I found over the summer. I’ll be working on that this week.

Table Before and After

“Stuff” is conspiring to keep me from totally finishing Harrison’s big boy room (time, weather, motivation?), but that’s ok, because the delay has given me the perfect excuse to catch you up on some of the other projects that we’ve been doing around here, that I haven’t blogged about yet.

You may recall that I found this table and chairs set on Kijiji (waaay back) with the intention of making them over some day. Well that day has come. We came to a consensus about how to finish it and then I put Roland to work while he was on paternity leave with me in the first few weeks after Foster was born. So, it only took us (almost exactly) a year to get our act in gear. But, hey… I wanted to be really sure I would love it.

Here’s the before. A solid oak pedestal table with 4 Windsor-style chairs in a blonde oak finish.

pedestal table and windsor chairs

This is the image I used as inspiration and solidified my decision.

And here’s the table now:

Table after

I love it! So glad we committed to the black. It looks great in the kitchen. The table was complete in a few days. The cool April weather we were having made the stripping and stain drying times a little bit longer than they would be under ideal conditions, but it turned out amazingly well. We (and by we I mean Roland) just had to be patient between steps.

It’s tough to capture the colour on my camera. The photo below makes it look a bit lighter than it is in real life. We used Minwax Dark Walnut stain to re-stain the top.

table close up

table closer up

The pedestal base was sprayed in Black glossy finish. And we did the chairs the same (that’s a story for another day!)

I love that the little vertical bits on the under side of the table were kept stained and the rest was sprayed. In a weird way I think it makes the table look more expensive. Every once in a while Roland has a good idea.

So there you have it. Now you know about our table and chairs make-over. What do you think? I’m so impressed with how it turned out and how great it looks considering this was Roland’s first attempt at stripping and re-staining a piece of furniture (and because the weather was uncooperative). I’m so proud!

(I’ll try to get a better shot another day).