|This table is perfect for a beach kitchen|
|Screened porch - what's not to love?|
|The hammock, ceiling fan and repurposed bed - so inviting.|
|With the exception of the dark paneling - this room is perfect!|
|Love the beach glass colors!|
|I want to sit and read on this porch!|
|From the Paula Deen cottage - love that chandelier|
|Saved my favorite for last. If that window has a waterview, I could live here forever!|
I have visited and loved many newer cottages with all the latest ideas of how to live a comfortable and laid back beach life, but for me the best "new" cottages incorporate so much of the old. A wide, screened porch with enough room to sit and read or for the kids to play on a drizzly day. A well-placed hammock in the quiet corner of the wrap around, towel hooks instead of bars in the bathroom, an outdoor shower, a deep seated, slipcovered sofa, a usable but small kitchen, and shells and signs and candles are all part of beach house living in my mind. I've dedicated a large portion of my daydreaming to designing and decorating the beach house in my mind over the years. Finally, the message is clear - appreciate what you have.
So, as I look through the photos and note what I would love to do with my house, I am mindful that I already have a beach house. Leafing through the pages of a decorating book or clicking through the photos on a website can make you wish you had something different. In this small, old, in "terrible need of work" house, I spent summers as a teenager, rocked my daughter to sleep, received friends after my mother's death, and started a business. It doesn't look like these houses yet, but it is a work in progress and while I can dream of visiting one of these places and using some of the ideas in my own home, the home I have contains the story of my life and I am pretty happy with how that story is turning out.