Back At It and a Big Surprise

Sadie and I arrived home safely in Pittsburgh on Saturday afternoon and we are back at it! “It” being life. Family life, church, laundry, cooking, cleaning, Etsy shop stuff, and everything else!

In some ways it feels so wonderful to be home again. In other ways, I wish I was back at my parents’ beach house just hanging out, with the most pressing decision being what we will have for dinner and what time we want to walk on the beach 🤣

Our first flight home was at 7:35 am, so we were up bright and early (4:15 am 😴) to drive the 1.5 hours from the Outer Banks to Norfolk International airport in Virginia. From there,  we said so long to my parents and thanked them for such a great week! Well, I did. Sadie? She wailed for my parents. She did not want to leave them!

Toddler sitting on floor of Norfolk International Airport

We made it through security, boarded our 30 minute flight, and headed off to Dulles International Airport. Sadie fell asleep holding my hand during the last ten minutes of the flight.

Poor girl had an early/confusing/sad morning. She honestly did well in the three airports we were in that day, especially considering the circumstances!

Toddler sleeping on airplane

At Dulles we took a tram to our terminal and grabbed some Starbucks before hopping on another 30 minute flight to the ‘Burgh! Side note: Sadie dropped a fruit snack and piece of cake pop on the airport floor, picked them up, aaaand ate them before I could tell her no. What happened the next day? She came down with a cold 😩

Once we arrived safely in Pittsburgh, Jimmy picked us up from the airport and we headed home to a huge surprise. I hinted at it in my last post, but didn’t give any specifics.

When I planned on going away with Sadie for a week, Jimmy wanted to tear down the wall that divided our kitchen and living room. We both knew this would be the perfect opportunity because he would have extra time to work and us girls would be out of his way.

So, while I knew Jimmy was working on the project while we were away, he said he didn’t want to send me any pictures. He wanted me to see the finished project in person when I got home so it would be a surprise. You can kind of see the wall “before” in the picture below.

Toddler girl wearing a Children's Place navy blue and red plaid Christmas dress

Here’s another “before” as he started to work on tearing down the wall. It was a supporting wall, so he had to install a steel beam in the ceiling.

Our living room is on the right and our kitchen is on the left.

Supporting wall about to be torn down in kitchen renovation for open concept

Here’s what the space looks like now! What. A. Difference. He even installed recessed lighting in the kitchen on a whim the night before we came home (<– who does that?! How!!). The view below is from the kitchen and looking into the living room.

Open concept kitchen

The strip of different looking wood in the floor is where the wall used to be. I can’t believe the difference! I feel like I left and then came home to a totally different house 😍

I still have no idea how he did all that work in a work week, but I do know I feel super blessed and happy with the results!

I keep walking around our house like the wall is still there 😂 We are planning on getting a kitchen table until we can design and build an island (by “we”, I totally mean Jimmy 😉).

Whew, I think that’s all the excitement I have to share! I made it through three plane rides with a toddler in less than a week (flying has been a fear of mine, but it definitely got better with this trip!!), Sadie got sick the day after we came home, I’m slowlyyyyy working on catching up with Etsy orders + house chores, and Jimmy surprised us with an amazing home renovation!

What was the last surprise in your life?



  1. The renovation looks awesome. Awesome job Jimmy as always I’m sure Niva helps too and she was happy to see the family together and back to same routine

  2. Oh my goodness!! What a huge difference! He did so much work in just a week! That’s incredible. I can definitely see why it feels like a totally different space. So wide open! I look forward to seeing pictures of how you style it all as you add things in!

    And I know this is probably old news by now, but hopefully Sadie is feeling much better!

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