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This blog post is purely for your curiosity.

After reading about our final goodbye to our house of 5 years and our upcoming rental Garage Makeover, did I make any of you wonder what our rental home looked like inside?

I may have mentioned words like – dark, dreary, brown – and of course . . . not at all my style.  A bit melodramatic perhaps.

Truth is, it is really not all that bad, which is exactly why we snagged it up in the first place.  It has many great features like cupboard space, walk-in closets, a large pantry and has plenty of room for the 6 of us.

This home will suit us just fine for the time being and I do hope to dig into some things you can do in a home that may not be your style, or place you with creative or budget constraints.  I’ve already got a few great ideas thanks to so many of your comments.

But for now, I thought I’d let you take a peek inside so you can see what we have to work with as I move ahead.  These images were taken right before we started packing our essentials into the home.  Much of our nice belongings and furnishings are still in our other home for staging purposes.  But we are making do with fold up chairs and a hodgepodge of furniture.

So come on in, take a looksi around, and let me know what you think I could do to make it feel more like home . . . more like the light and airy cottage farmhouse vibe I so much prefer.

Or would you be tempted with the mentality of, “Don’t bother.  Preserve your time and money for future things.”  Admittingly . . . those thoughts are often on my mind.


Let’s start with the kitchen.

Rental Home, UTAH

I actually had more cupboard space than I knew what to do with, and it’s nice having the laundry right off of the kitchen.  The walk in pantry is a luxury we’ve never had.  But that fridge.

I do miss a bigger fridge.  6 mouths to feed and all.

Let’s pretend for just a minute.  If this were my kitchen, I’d paint the cupboards white, replace the countertops with marble or marble like material, rip down the upper cupboards near the sink and do open shelving.  I’d find different light fixtures, sink and faucet, paint the walls, add backsplash and maybe even opt for a island in a different color instead of a wrap around peninsula.  Ideally, I’d find different flooring as well.  How about a vintage hutch alongside that wall???

Ha!  Not much, huh?

Let’s look at the living room . . .

Rental Home, UTAH

More brown!

I do love how the living area and kitchen are all one nice big space.  But as I thought I would confirm, I really don’t like carpet.  I’d take wood floors and a nice rug any day of the week.  I had to buy a nicer vacuum for all this carpet that frequently looks and feels dirty.  Love this Shark, by the way.

The biggest clash, for me, is the rock and mantel.  I feel like I could really make this space beautiful and more my style, but I don’t know how to work around that.

Just off the living room is a little office space, which I was so grateful to have for my work purposes.

Rental Home, UTAH

The bedrooms are all pretty much the same.  They are tight for us, but work just fine.

Rental Home, UTAH

Until the blinds are open during the day, the rooms feel like dark holes.

Rental Home, UTAH

And we actually had to put my oldest in the front formal living room.  She does have a curtain over it for now.  Lovely, I know (wink).

Rental Home, UTAH


The master bath is nice and roomy with a great walk-in closet.

Rental Home, UTAH

Rental Home, UTAH

And there is a separate bath for the kids.

Rental Home, UTAH

The basement is completely unfinished.  It would be nice to have extra living space, but I’m sure that would also increase the rent payments.  It works for great storage of all our other belongings.

Rental Home, UTAH

My oldest really wants to hang curtains around here and make it her room.  It’s an idea I’m toying with, or at least make it a play space with the toys.

Rental Home, UTAH

So there you have it friends!  You now can see what I see daily.  It’s a bit different from our other home – wouldn’t you say 😉

DIY Ruffled Duvet Cover, Ticking fabric


French Cottage Girls Bedroom makeover by TIDBITS


Cottage Farmhouse Home Office Spring Refresh


Cottage Farmhouse Spring Bathroom Refresh



A cottage farmhouse kitchen Spring refresh by TIDBITS


Spring bedroom refresh and pure linen sheets


Spring Living Room Home Tour and our new vintage blue rug, by TIDBITS.


French Cottage Bathroom Spring refresh for family


Of course, that home took us years to feel more like us, so the best we can do at the moment is look toward the future with hope and excitement.  We are still actively looking for the right property, running into lots of dead ends, and trying to keep our chins up.

We are just grateful to be together in good health with a roof over our heads.  The rest will come.

Thanks for being here with me today!  What do you think about the rental?  Again, I’d love to hear any of your ideas for our rental home, now that you’ve seen it.  I’m not sure how much progress I’ll be able to make without our furnishings and having the kids home for the Summer.  But I am taking advantage of the slower pace and extra time with my kiddos.

I have been working on some container gardens to appease my creative itch, and I can’t wait to show you soon!

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  1. Has your other house sold yet? Put St. Joesph in the front flower bed!!! Pray and let God handle it!
    You can be happy here!!!

  2. Wow!!! this is my dream home. If you can give just one day to live in your house it would be great. 🙂 Just kidding. I love you kitchen and all other rooms. Design is really awesome.

  3. Hi, I really like your kitchen and living room design most. You can use a fireplace in your living room without any hassle.

  4. Hi Cami, You might take off the cupboard doors and have something that resembles open storage. There is removable wallpaper for inside the cupboards or on the wall depending on how much work you want to do. Lots of white accessories will help. You are so creative I suspect you have already thought of all this.

  5. Actually the home is pretty good! In the kitchen views, the first thing you see is the
    peninsula wall. I would take some lovely, washable fabric, and make buttonholes on the sewing machine or use a grommet kit, to make holes across the top, and hang it along the peninsula wall with small Command hooks. I have seen many renters remove a couple of cupboard doors (and very carefully store them) to make open shelving. Putting cardboard inserts covered with wallpaper inside against the backs makes a pretty backdrop for dishes. Maybe for the flooring issue you could try making a floorcloth on vinyl or linoleum like Karianne Wood did at Thistlewood Farms. As soon as you move more of your own furniture in, or find a couple of thrift store treasures to paint (and sell afterwards) it will start looking more like “you”. The countertops may not appeal to you, but what you put on them will make a difference. The bedrooms really just look like they need lamps, sweet furniture, maybe some curtains and light area rugs. For the fireplace, I had a similar thought to another reader. If it is a working fireplace (aren’t you lucky!) you can make a removable cover for the stone part, made out of cement board. You can paint it, plaster it, whatever you want, and just place it in front of the existing surround. You may have to anchor it, but it seems doable.
    Mirrors, flowers, pretty soon it will be beautiful!

  6. It will look so much better when you have all your furniture in there, rugs on the floor, family warm and happy, etc. It looks to be a good rental with good amenities. After all, rentals are not show homes, they have to be bland and practical speaking from a landlords perspective. Enjoy your break from decorating and instead take time out.

  7. For the fireplace area, could you make a freestanding shiplap surround that would simply fit over the existing structure? It could be completely removable and I think it could be something where you would have to fasten it to anything. It would be like a hat for your fireplace 🙂 I see your gratefulness for having a house to live in during this transition but I also understand wanting to make wherever you’re living beautiful and a reflection of you, even though that reflection may not be completely your style. Whatever you do will be beautiful.

  8. Thank you for sharing Xx with your talent you will make your rental a lovely home for your family

  9. Cami, I think you need to focus on your glass being half full-you have a very nice rental home for your family to live while you hunt for land for your future home and while your current home is up for sale. In our area, most people live in their homes while up for sale and wouldn’t dream of renting another to live in, let alone “spruce up” while they are temporarily there. While many love your taste, not everyone does and apparently the people who do own this house, wants something easier for them to maintain. You have to respect that as you would expect the same if the situation was flipped. Meanwhile, concentrate your efforts on what you want this new home to be like – no need to spend your money “fixing” something that isn’t really broken-it’s just not your taste but fortunately you won’t be there forever. Honestly, I don’t think I would appreciate a home that I am renting to you, to be posted on your blog and then “taken” apart for the things you don’t like. I hope you do not offend your landlords with your post.

    1. I don’t believe that expressing disappointment equates with ingratitude. To feel lose is human and that is what I heard. Cami was sharing her home and inviting others to assist in making it better as a way to be inclusive. Responding by putting someone down for being human rather than saying something uplifting seems to only serve the one who is being negative.

      1. I’m sorry you interpreted my response to Cami as something so negative. I was not putting her down but rather trying to get her to see the positive-they have a very nice place to live and obviously it is not a strain on their budget to live there while selling their current home. Many would love to have a place as nice as their rental. I was also trying to point out that the folks they are renting from may interpret her remarks as negative and that their feelings should account for something as well. Cami and family are getting ready to embark on building their dream home and I am happy for them and looking forward to what it will become. I just hope they, especially Cami because she is creative, to keep their focus on what is to come and not stress over their “temporary.” I have every reason to believe she will come up with creative tutorials and posts about how to do many things to fill in the time until they begin to build.

        1. Thank you for responding. I suspect that Cami already knows all of the points you made. I still maintain that your comments service you as the speaker rather than Kami’s need to hear it.
          I don’t usually write to others and will stop here as your message and mine are clear in content. It’s not necessary that we agree.

          1. You are welcome! I have no idea why my comments “service me’- she is the one who asked for comments and several said similar responses as I did-look forward, not back, and don’t worry about the temporary. What she chooses to do is her business. I do believe that if someone askes opinions, they should be ready to hear those opinions-they are just that-opinions and Cami is free to chose what she wants. If she didn’t want them, she would not ask them. If she didn’t want to hear something different than what she is thinking she wouldn’t have asked.

            And yes if is fine to not agree. How boring if we were all alike. Have a nice evening.

  10. It is a nice rent house even though you can’t do too much to it. You can keep busy doing some small diy’s and spending time with those children of yours.Next,lol!!!

  11. Cami just remember this is temporary and you can do wonders with this place without having to tear down walls, paint and replace! You are very creative and will turn this rental into a warm and comfortable home for all of your family members.

  12. The rental isn’t as bad as my imagination. It actually looks very nice. Put your pretty furniture and and accessories in there and it will be lovely. Enjoy your family, enjoy the summer and plan for the new home. What fun!!

  13. You won’t be there forever, Cami, so that should be a plus for you and your family. To me, I see a neat and tidy rental home. Others who have little, might absolutely love it.

    I hope you’ll make a few memories while you’re living there.

  14. Love everything you do..this rental house is sweet and with all of your bright white furniture and accessories you will make it your own…would love to see as you play with it…

  15. It’s really cute (even though it IS brown), but I was thinking it was the 1980’s brown! Just keep all your creative juices flowing and use them on your new dream home.

    There are lots of temporary things you can do to the rental in the mean time that are cost effective and won’t upset the landlord wishes.

  16. I’m a natural wood type of person, so to me this rental and it’s wood is very nice. I would, however change the lights to a different finish (pewter or brushed stainless), and bring in lighter carpet, and paint the walls lighter (alabaster with a shade lighter trims). I’d also use a lighter wood/laminate on the kitchen floor to break up the tone on tone look. PLEASE don’t ever paint gorgeous knotty alder … that would be like putting a fisherman’s hat on the Queen. Anyway, take it easy and work on the plans for that new dream home. And remember….. we can bloom where we’re planted. ♥

  17. Hi Cami,
    Well the rental really is nothing much. It’s just a shame the owners won’t let you put some love into it.

    I thought you Video was awesome. Check out my website. I just started and I hope you’ll subscribe to my newsletter.

  18. I can see why you’re not happy, but I can also see why the owners don’t want changes. Renters have to think about maintenance in a space they don’t even get to enjoy, and wood stain and finger-print-hiding paint colors are going to be where it’s at! It’s a “nice enough”, classic-bland space.
    I’d say don’t sweat it, and use this time to work on small projects you take with you when you go, like furniture, art, and fabrics. I have to have a project (or 10!) going at all times too, so I get your need to create and improve! Have fun gathering ideas for the future! : )

  19. This makes me a little bit sad for you, looking at your beautiful spaces in your old home compared to this one. BUT, your family is all together and you are moving towards a dream you have. This part is temporary and you have plenty of space to live & dream & plan. Good luck!

  20. Definitely doesn’t look like you. However, it looks like a very nice house. I would just enjoy doing nothing for awhile and focus on planning the new home. At least you’ll know what you DON’T want. ?