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Memories.....and a spring break, break.

If you have been around for awhile you will remember this sweet cottage - our 
'Forever*Cottage' in Minnesota.  We called it home for three years prior to
moving back to Portland 2 years ago. So many good memories....such long winters!
{this home was featured in Flea Market Style}

Tomorrow, what we loved most about Minnesota arrives in Oregon - our
next door neighbors!  We are SO excited we can hardly 
stand it.   Needless to say, the next 10 days {yes, you read that right,
they are here for 10 days - all SIX of them}will be very busy so 
my posting may be sporadic or not at all.  We shall see, I don't want
any pressure because I just want to be present.  

As a family who has moved many times - this last one was a doozy.
I attribute the added stress to my children's ages - my big
girl was in 6th grade and my little in 3rd grade.  The 
transitions were all harder - we had left 'home', which was 
not just the cute cottage pictured above - it was school, teachers,
parents, friends, neighbors, familiar paths to the park, the local
ice cream parlor etc.....You get the idea. 
Thankfully, my girls are thriving in Portland now.

Having the friends who became like family
visit us in our new home is an honor and we feel
so blessed to continue this important relationship!

You will see our pack of 10 all over Oregon this week -
let the fun begin!

*** As you might have guessed, the guest bedroom 
redecorating was spurred on by this visit and as so 
many guessed, {although I didn't make it so
hard with my previous post}I chose the 'brass beauty'
sconces from Pottery Barn.  I love, love loved the 
green hipsters but in the end they just did not go with my home.
If I had a little boy, I would totally design a room around those sconces!


Guest Bedroom

We have guests coming to visit! Our next door
neighbors from our Minnesota Cottagewood 
neighborhood are coming to Oregon! 
We are SO excited.

Nothing gets you moving on a decorating project
like the anticipation of guests coming.

Our guest bedroom serves dual purposes in our home.
First and foremost, the room functions as
my husband's office but also needs to accomodate
guests when needed - it's a tricky combination which
is why I have basically done very little with this
room since we moved in almost 2 years ago.

The Schumacher Chiang Mai Dragon fabric kicked off the color
palette which needed to lean in a manly direction - ahem, HUSBAND'S OFFICE.
The navy linen shams and duvet cover are from West Elm and the quilt
and coral blanket are from Target!
The curtains are Ikea - I added the navy grosgrain ribbon.  The
bamboo blinds are from Overstock.

I am still waiting on hardware for the Ikea Rast nightstands 
I hacked and sconces for either side of the bed.......
I ordered some but had second thoughts after they
came so I ordered another set........

I thought it would be fun to have you guess 
which sconces I ultimately chose to use.....

What do you think? What would you choose?


Professing my love for brass....{once again}.

I am a terrible thrift store shopper {btw, have you hear THE song
about thrift shopping?}........I am constantly inspired by other bloggers
who obviously have good luck with it....but my need for instant
gratification, limited time and a sensitive 'ick' meter that goes
haywire upon entering a thrift store have prevented any
'hey look at this $5.00 mid-century modern desk
I scored at Goodwill yesterday' posts.

One of my many design quirks is that I love brass, always have
and always will.  Emily Henderson, a design crush of mine,
also has the same appreciation for brass that I do.....
her interiors have been inspiring me lately and making me
twitch and shift a bit in my own
When I spotted this lamp at my local Goodwill I took a 
picture of it with my phone BUT
I am scared like that when I step out of my comfort zone.
I even went back the next day because that bad-ass brass boy
was on my mind but IT WAS GONE!!!!

Fast forward to a random Wednesday last week.....needing some
small pots to grow wheat grass in for Easter, I stopped
in my local Goodwill to see if I could get some for cheap and 
low and behold, bad-ass brass lamp was back!

Needs a new finial!

I snatched it up without hesitation and brought it home.
Of course, bringing a 'out of your comfort zone' design element
into your space can set off a domino-redecorating affect...but
it can also lend great personality to your spaces - something
unpredictable and unexpected make spaces unique! In my
house, nothing is ever permanent and for $5.99 I think
I just might have scored my first Goodwill score!


The occasional chair.....why you 'need' at least one.

I stopped by a local client's home today to check on some
pieces she had reupholstered.  I am in LOVE with this pair
of french chairs!  My client already had these chairs, just
not in this room.  However, being a big fan
of frivolous furniture, especially a quirky/beautiful/fun 
occasional chair, I ordered urged her to bring them into her family room.
  I really believe every room needs at least one occasional chair - in a corner,
beside a table, in front of a bookcase, next to a get the idea.
Besides adding personality, occasional chairs can be moved
into a room when a larger gathering calls for extra seating.

This particular space was white on white - we have been working on
adding texture, a bit of color and some contemporary elements.
This fabric fits in all of the those categories!  

Next on the agenda for this room -  throw pillows and styling with 
accessories, my favorite part!  Stay's going to be fabulous!


Life via Instagram......

Life has been great, but busy.....

My little celebrated her birthday - I survived the sleepover!

My big girl got accepted into her high school of choice - 
I chased the mailman a couple streets over to get the 
awaited envelope.  My girl claims she will never be able
to face our mailman again because 
I embarrassed her so.  However, she was driving me crazy 
with all her pacing that morning/afternoon so when I saw the
mailman was up the street, I decided to make a run for him, you
are welcome darling daughter!

My little girl had a violin recital and performed her piece beautifully.
So proud of her.

My mom visited this week to celebrate the big birthday
and help me with the sleepover {the hubs was on a guys golf weekend}.
We took the girls to the Melting Pot, a fondue restaurant on Friday
night - they loved it, I liked the wine and chocolate.

I made everyone go for a hike on Sunday cause I am a mean 
mom like that, plus, we had some fondue to work off
....actually one likes to hike, the other kept
proclaiming, "you know me, I am not a woodsy kind of girl".

Thanks for visiting - I swear I have design posts coming, I swear!

Oh - and thanks for all the votes on my front door!
I will consider the winning color {coral!} or may have
even hatched another plan since that post!


Never mastered this task!


I can't believe it's Friday already.....
This week has flown by, filled with the regular life stuff,
birthday celebrations, client work, homework, housework,
a hike with friends, a much needed hair appointment
for yours truly, sunny warm spring weather.......

A fun weekend awaits - my mom visits to celebrate 
my girl's birthday,  a sleepover and lots of nervous energy 
as my big girl awaits high school acceptance 
letters due to arrive on Saturday - eeeek!  

My blogging content has been thin, but
that doesn't mean that I haven't been working
on projects - I have!  Stuff is coming....
coming, I tell ya!

So what are you up to this weekend????



My baby turns 11 today.

Her birthday is always particularly special
to me because her pregnancy was....
"special".  I had complications in the
beginning that threatened both her life and mine.
We both survived....and thrived!

My sweet Abigail is so like me....
she is creative, sensitive and serious.
She is always eager to help me in the 
kitchen and loves to bake!

Abigail enjoys quiet and her favorite place
to be is at home.  Although she has
many friends, I often believe she is most
content when she is by herself, building lego
sets or playing Barbies {yes, even at 11!}.

Abigail plays the violin and played
on her school's volleyball team this year.  She loves
fashion and shopping - hard
for a girl that has to wear a uniform
to school everyday!
She does not like math.

She can sometimes be overshadowed by
an older, extroverted big sister so when
you get her alone she will talk your
ear off.  I love that.

Abigail has birthmark smack dab in the
middle of her neck, "her dot" as she
calls it......we have always thought
we would allow her to determine if it
is removed or not but she wears it proudly.

Thank you for letting me share my girl.....we will
be celebrating with some shopping fun with her Mimi and 
then a sleepover party with her friends on Saturday...
wish me luck!


Thank you.....{design board sale!}

Over the last months I have had the pleasure of working with 
some of you on rooms in your homes.  It has been such a blessing
to me.....I love that the internet can connect us to people
we would have otherwise never have met!  

I never take for granted that these rooms, in homes I will most likely
never visit are personal family spaces.  Opening them up to me and
asking for my help and advice is an honor.  To my core, I 
really believe that living in a space you love, that lives the way
your family lives enhances our life, and that of our family, in so many ways.

The design above is one that I am still working on.  The young 
couple already has a sofa and loveseat in the space, but that's about it!  Like so many,
they are trying to finish the room on a tight budget.  We elected to 
keep the paint {SW Kilim Beige}, but paint the door to the garage a 
moody black.  This couple really likes neutrals and traditional
design so the board reflects this.  The botanical prints are
a budget-friendly option for art and framed in Ikea's Ribba
make a big impact at a low cost!

As spring break approaches, I am planning to take a few weeks
off but would love to fill my design cue for April.  I am 
offering design boards for $175 for the month of April.  I will
take a limited number of clients so I can complete your 
board in a timely manner.  So, if you are interested in 
having me help you create a room you love in April,
please email me at

Spring Curb Appeal.....


Spring time is the perfect time to rethink the curb appeal
of your home.  I know I am re-thinking the color
of our front door, a relatively easy update for instant
curb appeal!

While I would love to paint our entire house - it just isn't 
happening this year.  Our home is currently painted SW Sea Salt -
a sort of cool grayish bluish.  If you remember, last 
year I painted our front door a bright yellow.


I like the yellow but have considered re-painting our door
either a coral red or a traditional black......

Our front door!

For fun, I thought I would conduct a poll - asking for reader input.

If you would be so kind, please take a minute 
and cast your vote for what color
I should paint my front door!

The poll is located on the upper right side of my sidebar.
Can't wait to see what you all have to say.

I would also love to hear how you are
adding curb appeal to your home this spring????

An easy, breezy client project.....

Lisa's Family Room

I love working with enthusiastic, ready to re-decorate clients!
Lisa was definitely READY to bring some much needed
style to her family room and was always quick to respond to 
any email I sent - so this process went fast!
 Look at that beamed ceiling, it 
was screaming for a fabulous lantern!


Lisa's young family needed space to gather and wanted
it to be comfortable and casual.  Of course, they
are also on a budget.  So I came up with a design board
that mixed 'splurge' {Pottery Barn Carlisle sofas} along with
'save' {Ikea chairs, a Target throw}.  

I offered some examples of accessories - they
can choose to purchase these exact items or
use them as inspiration as they finish the room.
I am such an accessory girl myself and really believe
that it's these finishing touches that make your 
rooms personal, unique and cozy.

Thank you Lisa!  I loved helping you with
your family room!  I can't wait to see everything
in the space!

If you are like Lisa, and ready to redecorate and would
like some help, please email me!



Happy Monday!
Had to pass along this great giveaway
on I Suwannee.  I love this pillow combination.
Pink is BIG, I tell ya!


I was overwhelmed with the number of giveaway
entries I received for the Farmgirl Paints cuff giveaway.  Commenting on 
blogs has lessened so sometimes it feels
as if no one is reading - your comments had me feeling 
the love, so thank you.
I loved reading what each of you would 
have stamped on your cuff - such encouraging and
personal words! 

As much as I would love to give each and everyone of
you a cuff - I had to choose a winner.  Using -
lucky number 26 was congratulations to....

{email me at}

Remember, if you did not win, you have until March 10th to
order your own cuff.  Use the CODE 'jill15' at checkout
to receive a 15% discount!  


PurposeFULL Life.....{a giveaway}....

I posted one of the photos above on Instagram earlier this week
with the hash tag #whosoldladyhandsarethese......isn't it funny that I obviously
look at my hands many times a day, like everyday...but never noticed how wrinkly
and well, OLD they look.  Hello, hand-cream, we need to become better friends! 
However, after I came to my senses,  I thought, these are the hands that have
held my husband's hand for almost 25 years, the hands that held
both my baby girls for the first time and the hands that have yet to fail me
in my almost daily yoga practice {downward dogs and many vinyasas}. They
are the familiar hands of my grandmother, mother and hands, 
good hands....I'll keep 'em.

But enough about the hands let's talk about the arm candy, shall we?
Nearly everyday, you will find me wearing a leather cuff, it's my thing.
I have many but most of mine were made by my lovely friend 
Becky of Farmgirl Paints.  

When I was relatively new to blogging, I stumbled upon Becky's
blog and felt a connection, mostly because she lived near me in 
Minnesota but also because she just seemed so 'real'.  So imagine
how shocked I was when I was at my gym a couple weeks later
and noticed a cute mom with a 'little chick' and a 'big chick' 
in tow.....I knew it was Farmgirl Paints {Becky, unlike me, posts many
photos of her cute-self on her blog}!  So like any good blog
stalker, I sent her a creepy friendly message along the lines
of "do you workout at Life Time Fitness in ......?"  Low and behold
she got back to me and a friendship was born......
Unfortunately {or fortunately, depending on how you look at it}, our
lives took both of us away from Minnesota - to opposite coasts!

Ok - now let's talk more about Becky's cool, hip, inspirational cuffs.
Words and quotes are important to me - they decorate my home, 
broaden my mind and inspire me to be better and do better.
Wearing words that speak, uniquely to ME is me, no apologies.

The photos above are my newest cuff - it says,

"PurposeFULL Life".

That's alot to live up to. But with more PURPOSE
is how I am choosing to live this year - whoo hoo!
Purpose in who I spend my time with, how I spend my 
time and resources  - every minute. of every day.

Becky sells cuffs via her Etsy shop - open from 
the 1st-10th of every month. So guess what?
You can get your very own cuff with your
very own words stamped on it TODAY!!!
And even better......
Becky has generously offered 15% off
your cuff when you use the 
CODE ' jill15' at checkout!!!

Wait - but there's more {I feel like a game show host tonight!}

I am giving a cuff of your choice to ONE lucky
Forever*Cottage reader!

To enter:

* Leave me a comment letting me know
what your cuff would say.

* Become a follower of Forever*Cottage
{or let me know if you already are} for
a second entry.

That's it!

Enter by midnight PST on Sunday and I will announce the winner on Monday.
Have a fabulous weekend - now go get yourself a fabulous cuff!

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