Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea


Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea

Welcome back to The Tiny Cottage in Spring! Our last official visit here on The Inspired Room was at Christmastime! I’ve been asked many times to return for a spring post, so here we are! My parents officially moved in to this Tiny Cottage (which was added to the back of our home) after our home renovation was complete late last summer and into fall.

I think it’s fun to see all of the seasons and stages of the journey.

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea

My mom is like me (well, I guess you’d say I am like her ha!) in that she’s always evolving her home with the seasons. Now you know why I am the way I am :). She’s always moving her throw pillows around, changing out little things to usher in a new season.

My parents designed every square inch of their Tiny Cottage by the Sea with intention.

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Source: “Post Box” Wall Planter

While the design and construction phase of the Tiny Cottage was officially completed last summer and into fall (along with the renovation of our own kitchen and main floor) living in it begins a new season of intention in making it a home!

It’s been not quite three years since we moved here (three years this fall) and then a little over a year since then construction phase began. Many people have asked me about this journey, the Tiny Cottage as well as downsizing and creating a multi-generational home. I will have much more to share and specific tips as we learn more and get settled more into our life here. I will have to interview my parents on some of this process, too! I know they will have their own advice on Tiny Cottage living and I know many of you would enjoy that!

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Sources: “Post Box” Wall Planter // White Porch Light (Dawn to Dusk) 

I love to share the journey of our homes here so I thought I would share a few of my thoughts on our process of downsizing and the Tiny Cottage today as well as photos of spring in this darling home.

You’ll also find a SOURCE LIST at the end of this post!

Our family has lived in very large homes and smaller homes and I can say for sure we experienced advantages and disadvantages to all of them. There is no one answer or perfect one sized fits all home for everyone, but we made our decision to downsize here with a lot of thought and intention for what we wanted our life to be.

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Source: Round Braided Rug

It’s not that our home is extremely small (it’s 1900 square feet — the Tiny Cottage is very small at 400 square feet). We both chose to downsize from where we were rather than upsize and decided to share this very small property rather than live separately. There isn’t a right or wrong way to do this, this is just how we chose to live and how it all worked out for us.

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Source: White Retro Range Hood // Kitchen Blue Subway Tile (they got theirs here but it appears to be a better deal HERE)

Here’s why I wanted a smaller home. For every situation a big home might solve, it potentially creates other problems I didn’t want to have. Do I want less yardwork or more yardwork? More maintenance or less maintenance? More expense or less expense? More stuff or less stuff? A smaller home (and less storage) has its inconveniences at times, but there is a lot I prefer about having less.

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Source: Chandelier (Antique White)

When you downsize (and especially if you move into a Tiny Cottage!) life can feel simpler in many ways. Simple is not necessarily easier. But simple can be intentional. It can be a challenge sometimes to wrap your mind around how you will function with less when you’re used to more, but I think there is something peaceful and freeing about accepting a boundary and learning to live beautifully within it.

Downsizing or having less space means making decisions that you don’t necessarily have to make if you live in a bigger house. Making decisions can be hard, but in a good way. This, or that? Not both. And often you realize you no longer need to ponder some of these questions at all.

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Fireplace: Jotul Brand in Sky Blue

Instead of always wondering about possibilities such as should we get this or that….the answer is more clear….we should get none of the above. That clarity can feel limiting or frustrating at first, but ultimately I think of it as freeing. It makes room for what matters and brings more clarity to what that is.

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea

Less questions, less decisions, less buying, less stuff, but more enjoying what IS possible! Caring for our little yard, a little home, having big dreams for the smallest spaces, watching our family thrive and grow and simply savoring life by the sea. There is much to do and be thankful for here!

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Source: Ruffle Blankets at End of Beds

A smaller space means getting creative and being intentional in how you function in a space. Letting go of what isn’t necessary to make room for what is essential. Becoming more in tune with what essential means to you is not easy at first, but it is thought provoking in a good way.

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea

Choosing to live with beauty and surrounded by what is meaningful is essential and necessary to our well-being. Sometimes that means having less things, but other times it means choosing to add what brings meaning and contributes to our quality of life.

Everywhere in the Tiny Cottage is a mix of collected memories and new memories. That’s what makes any house feel like home, but it makes every square inch of this Tiny Cottage special!

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Source: Ceramic Wall Pocket

I bought my mom this little hanging wall pocket for Mother’s Day when we were all out shopping with my girls. In a tiny space you don’t always need more stuff or more space, it is about how you use the space you have. She enjoys the freedom to swap flowers or items she displays here!

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Source: White Wood Bead Semi Flush Mount Chandelier
Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Source: Frame TV // Toaster Oven
Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Source: Digital picture frame

My parents love the neat digital picture frame / photo viewer that we got them for Christmas. They said it’s the best gift they’ve ever received. Every day they get new photos and videos of grandchildren and get to watch all of the new great grand babe milestones. These photos take up very little room but add immeasurable joy, happiness and a sense of connection to the beautiful life they created.

There are several frame options by the way, we chose the Sea Salt! You can see all the finishes here.

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Source: Mouse Night Light

My dad has his own little trinkets and gifts sprinkled around the Tiny Cottage. We buy a lot less these days, but what is given has meaning and purpose. A Tiny Cottage mouse night light currently riding in a boat is a favorite practical and meaningful addition.

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Source: Nap Time Sign

A little sign to hang on the door if anyone wants to nap in peace without a dog visiting on a whim or an unexpected banana bread delivery. I don’t think it’s been used yet, my dad will nap anywhere any time, but it is cute hanging here, just in case. 🙂

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea
Source: Leather Chair (swivel chair at secretary desk, other color options!)

The Tiny Cottage is cozy inside all year round! Now we’re working on the outside!

We’ve been landscaping the backyard, my parents have been out there planting all spring, too! They love a beautiful garden. While there are definite limitations to how much we can fit in such a Tiny Garden, there will be no limitation to our enjoyment of filling every nook and cranny with plants and adventures for grand kids, too — we have little bridges for dogs and kids, bubbling fountains, cheery bird houses, window boxes and flagstone paths. It’s going to feel like a secret garden.

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea

Every plant is tiny right now, but in time we will see all of the lush green plants and flowers out our windows and around the yard!

All things worth having take time to grow and beautiful things can blossom even in the tiniest places.

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea

Speaking of our backyard, we had a neat opportunity to create a video in partnership with a brand on The Tiny Cottage. We rarely take on partnerships these days, but it was fun to be able to share a glimpse of our family life in the backyard and Tiny Cottage (on Mother’s Day!) in a gathering at the Tiny Cottage. You can see it HERE! Enjoy.

I will share more about our yard in an upcoming post.

Thank you as always for your support in our home adventures and of The Inspired Room. We are glad you’re here!

Spring in the Tiny Cottage: A Reflection on Having Less in a Cottage by the Sea

You can find all previous blog posts about the Tiny Cottage here (additional tours and details!)

Entry and Sitting Room Sources:

“Post Box” Wall Planter

White Porch Light (Dawn to Dusk) 

Chandelier (Antique White)

Round Braided Rug

Fireplace: Jotul Brand in Sky Blue

Chairs / Table / Sofa: Home Depot Hampton Bay (exact style appears unavailable but that is the brand)

Blue and White Checkered Tile on cabinet top (they got theirs here but it appears to be a better deal HERE).

Espresso Machine

Toaster Oven

Frame TV

Leather Chair (swivel chair at secretary desk, other color options!)

Digital Picture Frame

Mouse Brass Lamp

Bedroom Sources:

White Wood Bead Semi Flush Mount Chandelier

Ruffle Blankets at End of Beds

Kitchen Sources:

White Retro Range Hood

White Retro Fridge/Freezer

Copper Handle on Kitchen Cabinets

Copper Kitchen Knob

Kitchen Undermount Bar Sink

White Ceramic Cooktop

White Kettle

Kitchen Blue Subway Tile (they got theirs here but it appears to be a better deal HERE)

Copper Wall Mount Paper Towel Holder

Toaster Oven with Air Fryer

Espresso Machine White and Copper

Wood Folding TV Table

Nap Time Sign

Paint Colors and Floors:

Walls: Simply White

Kitchen Cabinets: Languid Blue Sherwin Williams

Floors: European White Oak (We got it locally through a flooring shop, unfortunately I wasn’t able to get a link to it nor find a brand name online to share it but it’s European white oak, engineered wood! It had a matte feel and finish so it has a nice casual / beachy feel).

Bathroom / Laundry Sources (see those spaces in THIS tour post)

Bathroom Faucet in Brushed Nickel

Bathroom White Onion Light

Subway Tile in Bathroom (Ours was called Arctic White #0190 but there’s a similar color)

Washer/Dryer Combo

White Cabinet Knobs

Toilet

Bathroom Exhaust Fan with Light and Heat

Bathroom Medicine Cabinet with Light and Defogger

Find lots of the Tiny Cottage sources in my Amazon folder HERE.

See all of our previous posts about the remodel HERE.

Read whole story of how we decided to move to this house with my parents here!



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