Aug 29, 2017

Moving Into Our Mountain Cabin

I'm so excited to share moving into our cabin with you today! 

Furnishing our little mountain vacation cabin in McCall, Idaho from our primary residence in Boise took a lot of careful planning and preparation, especially on our very tight budget. Our actual move-in was the weekend of October 22, 2016, but I started daydreaming about my decor and collecting ideas weeks earlier, before we even closed on our cabin. 

Pinterest ideas for our dream mountain life.
I started by gathering Pinterest photos that reflected our emotions and dreams for our future mountain living experience. I think most of us have a picture in our minds of what a perfect vacation place would look like, from rustic log cabin to cute lake cottage to sleek modern beach house, we all dream. I wanted to capture our dreams in photos to help me choose the right decor for our cabin.

What we had to work with; the before cabin photos from the real estate listing.
Next, I carefully studied the real estate listing photos of our cabin to remember where windows, doors, baseboard heaters, electrical outlets, etc. are located, since I couldn't simply run over and refresh my memory in person. I also created floor plans with exact measurements that we made during our real estate inspections. 

Cabin floor plans and measurements with our furniture inserted.
I measured our furniture and spent many hours fitting it into the floor plans so it would work. Seating in the living room for six (the size of our family) was essential, so everything had to fit perfectly. Our cabin is so tiny, it was like putting a challenging puzzle together. 

My final idea boards created on Photoshop.
Once I knew where the large furniture pieces would go, I filled in with the smaller furnishings and decor and created a mood board for the entire cabin on Photoshop. My color scheme is red, white, navy blue, grey, black, and white. I used these boards, along with lists from Pinterest of items every vacation rental should have, to put together my own lists for everything we'd need. Even though we won't be renting our cabin, we will need all the things renters would need. Those lists that I printed and took shopping with me made it a lot easier.

    Purchasing our cabin stretched our budget to the max, so it was essential to furnish as much as we could from what we already had. Luckily, we had saved lots of our old furniture over the years tucked away in our loft, and we filled in what little else we needed from Boise thrift stores. The few things we couldn't find at thrift stores, we purchased at less expensive department stores.  

Shopping, gathering, and packing for moving day.
For a couple of weeks before moving day we stored everything in our Boise living and dining rooms. We had one day to pack the truck, make the two hour drive over winding Highway 55 to McCall, unpack the truck and return it, so organization was key. We saved money on mileage charges by choosing a truck rental company in Boise that had a drop-off point in McCall. 

Finally, we were all set and moving day arrived. With lots of help from my daughters and sons in law we packed up the truck and headed for McCall.

Legacy Park, McCall, Idaho.

Mile High Marina, McCall, Idaho.

Ponderosa State Park and Payette Lake, Idaho.
The summer crowds had disappeared, and fall had arrived in the central mountains of Idaho that day as we drove into McCall. We were completely enchanted with beautiful autumn colors and mild weather for our moving-in weekend. 

Tucker is making sure his dog food got packed.
We started right away unloading the truck and had the furniture set up in no time. Later that weekend, while Tucker napped after the hard work of unpacking, I snapped some photos.  

Our thirty year-old custom built sectional with newer denim seat cushion slipcovers just barely fit, minus the corner wedge.

Our old ottoman and a new $99 Overstock rug.

Freshly laundered curtains from the previous owners, inherited end table painted black, and a new Target lamp.

Inherited refinished maple drop leaf table for both a desktop and dining, thrift store art, diy prints and signs and family photos.

Shelves made of drawers from the bottom of our old Boise hutch.

A painted yard sale telephone table and a thrift store lamp with a new Walmart shade.

Our front porch wicker chair, the TV from my office/studio, and a dvd "fireplace."

Our mattress from our Boise guest room, yard sale painted table, Target headboard and duvet, and Home Goods "welcome to the lake" sign, a cabin warming gift from my daughter and son in law.

Homemade cross stitch and painted Amazon lamps with USB chargers in the bases.
Ikea cart, Target towels and rug, Anthropologie shower curtain, a gift from my other daughter.

DIY chalkboard and our folding camp table. Walmart microwave and blender.

A red Keurig, our one splurge!

Still the original kitchen.

An Idaho state-shaped cutting board, a gift from my nephew and his wife, and thrift store blue and white dishes and cookie jar.

Flatware from Shopko and red and white striped tea towels.

Our first McCall purchase, a moose hook from our local May Hardware store. 
We just love how our tiny cabin looks now. We can hardly even remember what it was like before we scrubbed, caulked, patched and painted (read about that here!) Now that we're all moved in and cozy, in future posts I'm planning on sharing what it's really like to spend weekends on mountain time in a 470 square foot space. I'll also be sharing more cabin DIY, as we renovate our kitchen, paint the outside, get a new metal roof, work on landscaping projects, and much more. I'll be writing about the charming little town of McCall, hiking the grandeur of the Payette National Forest, mountain biking and snow shoeing in Ponderosa State Park, kayaking on beautiful Payette Lake, and anything else I can think of about our fun new weekend mountain lifestyle. 

Thank you for stopping by today! I hope you'll continue to join us on all our new adventures! 

Click HERE to read more about our cabin!

Come party with me!


  1. I'm sure glad you explained what happened to that cutting board!! Everything looks wonderful - the perfect vacation cottage! Enjoy!!

  2. Wow!! You've done so much in such a short time! It looks wonderful as is, but I look forward to your ongoing efforts!

  3. I am utterly and totally SURPRISED at how wonderful your cabin looks! You two are really going to enjoy yourselves spending time there!! Your decorating choices are da bomb if you ask me. THIS is how a cabin should look. xo Congratulations on your real estate choice purchase and how everything has turned out.

  4. THIS is exactly the way I love to decorate...gathering pieces, olden, thrifted,hand-me-downs...these pieces have a loved feeling that doesn't come with most new pieces...o, I do love new pieces thrown in for good measure (like a adorable RED kurig :)...the cabin is looking so great..I can just feel your excitement as you take us thru ea room, describing ea piece and where it came from...I love the idea of covering the cushions of your olden sofa..and it looks so love love your bedroom..
    love the shelf area above your kitchen sink...
    I know I'm not having near the fun YOU are, but I AM looking forward to ea post...I get your posts in my email so I won't miss a one. Is there any way you would feel comfortable in sending me a mailing address ? I have a little something I would love to send you that will be perfect in your little adorable cabin. My email address is

  5. I'm so glad I'm not the only one who decorates (in my head) before closing! I need to look back on my inspiration photos and see how much I actually stuck with.
    Love your sweet cabin and the surroundings are jaw dropping beautiful! Wow! It all looks very cozy and inviting. You will have so much fun in your weekend getaway! Looking forward to hearing all about your adventures.

    Blogger is showing you as a no reply blogger. Thought you might like to know.

  6. It doesn't even seem like the same cabin. You've done a great job. It's so welcoming.

  7. You must be exhausted and I love everything you've done. It looks so warm and welcoming and obviously Tucker approves. Enjoy your hard work.

  8. It looks so lived in & welcoming!
    I'll be right there!
    All the goodies you used from your own stash and thrift stores make it look like it's been yours forever.

  9. Adorable. How fun. You did an amazing job. I love the gray and red in the bedroom. It seems like a wonderful place to get away from it all.

  10. I'm so happy to have found your blog at Maria Elena's party! How exciting to move into your cabin and have all of these ideas and plans to look forward to. The place looks really cute already, I love the bright, happy colors. The bedroom is perfect...I'm looking for a new headboard and want iron. I love the arrow sign, too. I may have seen it (I live and breathe HomeGoods)!

    I live on a lake in Michigan. 2 and 1/2 years ago we had a pipe burst that virtually destroyed the interior of our home. It had to be gutted and we moved back in a year ago. We had to start from scratch and it has been a challenging year. Come for a visit and we can compare notes! :)

    That Tucker is a cutie!


  11. OMG, it seems like you've lived here forever Laurel! Love everything you have done so far! Already so warm and beautiful, just like your old home! I wish I can come over, McCall will probably even more beautiful this Fall!


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