First of all I want to thank all of you for keeping our family in your thoughts and prayers.
This month we lost my father in law, and just recently, if you follow me on instagram, you know we lost our fur baby Hunter.
I am really hoping next month will be a better one!

When we bought our house about 16 years ago, I did not take many before photos. But I took a couple and dug them up to show you a few side by side before and afters.

You can click on each photo to enlarge.

Lets start with the kitchen.
This was the first room we tackled in the house, adding a skylight. 
That skylight was the very first project here on Crystal Lake and things took off from there.

Here is a fun fact: Layla from The Lettered Cottage gave me the idea to do "kitchen words" around the skylight area.

There was no turning back after we cut the huge hole in the ceiling.

The pantry/nook area did not always look very pretty. 
Check out this before and after:

We got rid of the freestanding stove and chimney and made it into a nook, which has recently become a small baking center. The area to the left of it became our pantry.

And one last before and after for today, and possibly the biggest change~the exterior.

I'd say we've come a long way! 
This just shows that with a little blood, sweat, and tears, you can create the home of your dreams, out of , well, a shack!

{or a caretakers cottage in our case!}