The Beach Cottage Story

Image 1Once upon a time seven years ago we found this little gem in Naples, FL.  We had been talking about buying a vacation home to start building family memories.  Naples is a beautiful town on the southern part of Florida on the gulf of Mexico.  Before I met my husband in my early twenties, I lived in Naples and knew it was a place I would want to bring my family one day.  Fast forward ten plus years…married, three boys, and two dogs.

The house hunt began with a vision in mind of a “beach cottage.”  I knew I wanted a home that had a cozy cottage feel, not just any home.  I wanted the home with character, the fixer upper, but perfectly imperfect as is.  We loaded up the kids, flew to Florida for a three day weekend and set off looking at over thirty homes that were on the market.  I had found this home online before we even left and immediately fell in love with it.

 

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The price tag was not in our budget. This home was perfect with the white picket fence, a huge yard with massive Banyon trees and the sweetest little wrap around brick driveway.  Be still my heart.  I tried to put it out of my mind and move on to the other less “full of character” homes.  When our realtor mentioned that it was worth a shot to go see the home and make an offer, I knew I would never want to see another home again….this would be THE ONE.

Image 5 We pull up into the driveway and the picket fence made my heart go pitter patter!  I mean really! A little beach cottage with a white picket fence!  Every little girl dreams of the home she’ll live in one day with the white picket fence!  I knew this was our cottage.  We took a tour and the sweetest little grandma and grandpa lived in the home…I could tell it was full of happiness and love.  The character was just pouring out of the the french doors!  The boys were already exploring in the yard, picking fruit off of the fruit trees.  Yes, this perfect cottage has fruit trees!  Avocado, grapefruit, and mango!  Yay!  I won’t have to shop for food, we can just live off the fruit!  Winner!

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The story goes on that we put an offer in and went back and forth with the homeowners until we finally came to an affordable price.  The beach cottage was OUR COTTAGE one month later!  That summer we spent a month in our new little slice of paradise and began turning it into our vacation home…our true home away from home.  We shopped every thrift store, yard sale, antique store and filled our rental car to the brim…our poor kids!

Image 9Why yes there are three boys smashed under those boxes.  At the time they were 8, 6, and 3 years old.  So car seats and all we made it work.  We lived on bare minimum until we carefully selected our little treasures for the home along the way.

Image 10Hey, at least the kids had coloring books and crayons!  We even slept on the floor the first week, but it was so fun and such an adventure!  We worked hard cleaning, painting, and shopping…yes, LOTS OF SHOPPING!  Our youngest son even had his 4th Birthday during our first month in the cottage and learned how to ride a bike, training wheels and all, on our cute little brick driveway.  Memories already being made…PRICELESS.

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Seven years ago, marks the beginning of some of the most memorable family memories, vacations, and times spent with family and friends visiting us.  This home is a true treasure and a blessing to be able to get away to.

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We’ve been working hard on updating this gem and you can see the new complete renovation HERE!  I pinch myself with how good it all turned out!  Be sure to check it out!

Thanks for stopping by!

Shauna

 

 

 

10 Comments

  1. I’m in tears, Shauna. What a lovely story and you and your family are so special!! Hope I get to visit this lovely, cozy cottage one day, friend! You are truly amazing and I’m so glad we’ve met and become friends because I have been truly blessed by our friendship

    1. Hi Bree!
      You are so sweet Bree! I was in tears just looking at my boys that little! They grow up so fast and I just want time to slow down. I can’t wait for you to be able to enjoy the cottage some day! It’s such a special place! Ditto to what you said about our friendship too sweet friend! You have been a true blessing and I am so very thankful for your friendship!
      xo,
      Shauna

  2. I love this, Shauna!!! What precious pics of your little ones (especially crushed by boxes in the back seat!!) .lol. Every kid should grow up filled with memories of family vacations at the beach! I did, and they’re still some of my favorite memories!! And, you and your family are going to be making a lot more in this darling cottage!! ☀️. Now, keep sharing those cottage pics with us!!

    1. Hi Debi!
      Thanks so much for stopping by! My hope is that the boys will cherish the memories we are making there and bring their own families back to the cottage when they are grown. I didn’t grow up on the beach but always loved it and wanted to be right on top of it some day. The Lord has really blessed us with this home.
      xo,
      Shauna

  3. What an amazing place to create lifelong memories for you and your family. I grew up in s.florida..palm beach co, but havecakways preferred the west coast. We are actually planning on going to the ritz for a quick get away soon. Welcome home.

    1. Hi Laura!
      Thank you for stopping by! Naples is definitely a treasure and so beautiful! We feel so blessed to have a home there. The humidity in the summer on the other hand is nuts! LOL! Have a fabulous trip at the Ritz! We’ve stayed there before, its gorgeous!
      xo,
      Shauna

  4. What a beautiful home!! It seriously is full of so much character! Im so glad you are able to share this with us. Looking forward to see what the inside looks like.

    1. Hi Oscar!
      Thank you so much for popping over to the Blog! The beach cottage HOME TOUR is up now if you want to see inside! You can view under HOME TOUR – Beach Cottage! Have a great day!
      Shauna

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