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The Name Game and Pool Plans

There have many questions regarding the name of the new house – will I keep it The Lily Pad Cottage or will I change the name of the blog or what will I do???

The truth is I have no idea :) Well that’s not true I know a few things.

  1. The name of the blog won’t change. Honestly that would just be too confusing and it’s a lot of work to rebrand and redirect your site and I’m just not ready to go down that road yet.
  2. I will be keeping a “Lily Pad Cottage” tab under my header at the top of my blog so that you can still access the home tour, which I need to update! And any time you use the “search” box on my site you will be able to access old projects and room makeovers.
  3. The new house will have a new name so that I can refer to it or The Lily Pad Cottage and you know what I’m talking about, well at least what house I’m talking about as it’s rare that anyone actually knows what I’m talking about. :)

If you have some name ideas I would love to hear them; I had a cute name all picked out – Willow Hill. It’s on a hill and it has really pretty willow trees by the water, or what I thought were really pretty willow trees. Turns out they are really pretty, half dead willow trees that are waiting to fall down and crush my children at any moment (according to my tree guy). So we will be cutting them down (sob) and now I’m left with Tree Stump Hill? No Tree Hill? Doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue!

I still like the idea of having “Hill” in the name instead of cottage, but that’s as far as I’ve gotten. I’ll keep you posted as I come up with more ideas or let me know if you come up with something too! Right now I’m leaning towards Green Slime Hill or Kryptonite Hill, as we were greeted with this mess in the pool after we closed on Friday.Green pool filled with algae

Ugh, my poor kiddos had their bathing suits ready to christen the new pool, but instead it was basically the Rio Olympic diving pool over here. So far pool ownership is not what it’s cracked up to be, but we are trying to get it under control before we have to close it down in a few weeks.

A man cleaning a pool

How cute is my pool boy (aka the Mr.) though?

I wanted to share a few more pics of the pool and garage area and our plans for this space come next spring. The pool house/garage needs a new roof and a coat of paint for sure. Along with some landscaping and eventually a new fence.

A house that is near a pool

We just found out this little section here next to the pool with pavers in it used to be a hot tub! I don’t love the wonky pavers in there, so I’m hoping to come up a different solution there too.

There is this cool little cabana area that needs some TLC too, but picture it after a little power washing, stain and paint. I’m also thinking navy and white striped canvas drapes, a hammock or two and a dining area so we have a shady snack spot. Some fun outdoor lights will also so be happening.

A wood cabana

Up above the garage is the loft, its a nice big space about 24 by 36. In the spring I’m thinking of spraying the lofted ceilings white and putting a coat of poly on the floors. I’ll probably throw a rug in here and the bean bags from our playroom. But eventually we would like to insulate it and install a heating/cooling unit and make this a really nice useable space. In the meantime it can be a fun hangout spot on a rainy day.

Empty attic

Oh and we need to address the windows up here as these barn doors open wide and are an american ninja warrior disaster waiting to happen. My kids are already dreaming up some sort of zip line/slingshot situation that will catapult them into the pool from up here. Um, no.

The inside of a building

We also have this pool house “bathroom” over here to deal with, as much as my daughter loves the idea of a pink toilet we are hoping to upgrade this space next summer too. This house is going to keep me so busy with projects for years to come.

House and Bathroom

We are working on finalizing the main house plans and I’m hoping to be able to share my ideas along with some tips on how to pick a builder, architect, plans etc soon!

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  1. This is the cutest game, Blair! I love this! I have a few younger kids on my husband’s side who would adore this, especially since they could use a mini pumpkin as a ball. I’m definitely remembering this for Thanksgiving!Monster Truck Show

  2. I think you are wise in not changing your blog address…way too much trouble and people usually lose followers…good luck on the naming of your new house…and hopefully, when the chemicals are balanced in your pool, it will be pretty again.

  3. Kelly,

    I don’t think I have ever commented but have followed you for some time. Use to drool over your previous house, so am super excited to watch all the progress on the new place. I really think you need to plant new willows. Actually love the idea of keeping some of the live current willows to start a new patch. As someone mentioned, a continuation of life, old and new.

    I do like the name Willow Hill. There is something about the word willow that is soothing. Willow Lake Cottage is another name I like. Willow Hill Cottage, is another option. Willow Hill Lake Cottage….the options are endless! I am a fan of cottages myself. Just makes you think quaint and warm. Matter of fact I think that is how I found you. I was searching for “lake cottage” blogs if my memory serves me correct. I am 40 so don’t quote me on that. Haha

    Keep up the good work! Anything you choose will be wonderful! It is your blog so the name must resonate with you, the rest of us will adapt just fine.

  4. Congratulations to you and your family!!!! You sure do have a lot of plans in the works and I can’t wait to see all of them!!!! Sorry about the willow trees but I know whatever name you come up with will be perfect. TFS and take care……….

  5. Willow Hill! Plant new ones. :) :)

    There’s my two cents from Florida. Haha Look forward to all the amazing before and afters. Many Blessings!!

  6. This is soooo exciting! I can’t wait to see what you do with the this house! That loft area – O.M. M.G!!!!!!! I love it sooo much!

  7. How about New Willows Hill? Or Nesting Willows Hill? I can’t wait to see what you do with the place; I am so excited for you!

  8. “Cottage on Willow Hill”
    So excited for your new adventure! I’ll be paying close attention as I’ve purchased an old cottage on 1500 ft of lakefront, also! I’m sure your new lake house will also be your piece of Heaven on earth, too! By the way, I like the way your kiddos think…..a zip line into the pool!!!?

  9. Since you didn’t know there was more across the street. How about “Across the Willow Cottage Hill”. Just saying…
    I can’t wait to see how you’re going to make this house a home again.
    Best of luck!

  10. How about Lapping Waters? Or Wave Hill? The sound of lake waves is my favorite summertime noise/memory : ) .

  11. One more comment – I’m just purchasing my Dad’s farm – a house, barn, shed – a total of 10 acres. I need a name for my new place too! Ya’ll help me! My Grandfather originally owned all the surrounding land. He was famous for making molasses. He used a “mill” that you pushed the sugar cane thru while a horse (later a tractor) pulled the wheel round in a circle. I’ve thought of Molasses Mill Farm but I’m totally open to suggestions….help! :)


  12. Hi ! I love the name Willow Hill also! I’d replant the willow trees…mix them up and be sure to plant some corkscrew willows. Willows grow really fast if you pour the water to them. Enjoy your new home!

  13. You are going to have so much fun with this new adventure! We had an old hot tub next to our pool that was tiny, outdated and the pipes were leaking badly. We could have just filled it in but I thought that would be just too much concrete patio so we filled it in with good loan and turned it into a planter. We added a windmill palm since it was rated to withstand the cold in our area and added small shrubs and perennials. It has added a perfect pop of plant life to the area. Maybe something like that would work instead of those pavers.

    1. I love the idea of making that a little planted area, did you have issues with pool water hurting the plants? The Mr. thinks it should be a swim up bar ha :)

  14. I can’t wait to see what you do with your new place. I see many hours of reading enjoyment in our future!! Good luck getting inspired to pick the new name.

  15. Just a P. S. regarding those Willow trees. Maybe it is better they are in need of coming down. My in-laws had one near their patio and it would attract these little mini black bugs. Their pretty to look at but I’m more of a fan of a hardy Maple.

  16. I love the new property. I can only imagine the work (fun) ahead of you and your family. Can’t wait to see what your home design choice will be. I know the craftsman style is so popular but I tend to like the old fashioned cape cod/arbors/picket fences/traditional gardens. If I had my hands on this property I’d be bringing a Nantucket feel to the design… Fun barn/pool area. What a fun hang out that will be in years to come.

    1. Debra it’s like you are right in my brain :) I completely want an east coast cottage and I’m doing my best to go that route!

  17. When we bought our lakeside cottage one cold March, three years ago – we wanted to honor it with the perfect name. For years, I had dreamed of owning such a cute weekend cottage, and had long decided I would call it ‘Willow Cottage’. (I love blue willow patterned china). As the universe would have it – the cottage chose its own name – because later that spring, we were graced with several robin families that came to nest. We were serenaded with their beautiful song….hence, ‘Robin Cottage’ was born. My advice, is to wait and see what unfolds.
    A big congratulations to you and your family…..much happiness in your new home……and thank you so much for your lovely blog!

  18. How exciting for you and your family. Two years ago my husband and I (retired and in our late 60’s) purchased a remodeled farmhouse north of Grand Rapids. It had an inground pool, which we had no experience with owning or caring for it). The first spring when we opened the pool, there was no water in it as there was a hole in the liner and it all leaked out. We linked up with a great pool company in our area and replaced the liner and started using Bio Guard Chemicals. It has not been hard for us to care for it and it is actually quite easy. Our pool company has a Pool School in the spring and this old granny always attends it. I have learned a lot. We have never had algae problems or anything. 3 basic steps once a week and a little vacuuming during the week. We will be purchasing an robotic cleaner this spring. They run about $1,200.00. It is a wonderful drawing card for our 14 grandchildren! Your family will love it. If the old folks can do it, it will be a piece of cake for your family! I am excited to continue to follow your journey.

    1. We definitely have plans to get a robotic cleaner, the pool guy told us not to put one in yet because our pool was too far gone. It’s in our spring plans for sure! Thanks for the encouragement :)

  19. I am thinking of Cottage Hill but I am sure you will pick a great name to fit your home. I cannot wait to see all your ideas come full circle, you have a keen eye to see beyond what is there now. I think the idea to root new willows from the existing ones will look awesome, I love willow trees!

  20. I’m getting so excited for you. I can see your vision on the garage/pool area. So much potential! I know you’ll make it so beautiful. I agree with the other comments, if you like willow trees they are easy to start and are fast growing. Nothing prettier than a big willow by a lake.

  21. Love someone’s suggestion of Lily Hill or even Lily Hill Cottage. Great idea to root new willows from the old ones. Willows are beautiful, but here in New England they’re a mosquito hotel! What an amazing property! Can’t wait to follow your projects! :)

  22. Do you know how FAST willow trees grow?? Shoot, you’ll have humongous trees in no time. Plant them. I like the name although I liked the name lily pad cottage. Lily pad cottage on Willow Hill? You can also put in lily pads in the water. The frogs would love you. I’m sure you’ll think of something good. :-)

    1. Oh trust me, we have plenty of lily pads over here already, we will be getting rid of a few…hundred :) I’m good with the frogs it’s the water snakes that love them that is not ok!

  23. Congrats to you & your family on the next chapter!
    Why not Lily Hill which references the blend of old & new…
    Plant masses of day lilies around the property in the Spring. Here in Chicagoland day lilies bring summer color & are drought tolerant so bloom well from July through August.
    Best of Luck with your charming new home!

  24. Congratulations for this marvelous canevas … Full of dreams and possibilities! My suggestion’s: Paradisio Hill

  25. How about hillside cottage? My lake house is on a hill too and it already came with the name duck head which we like bc it has low ceilings and lots of quant corners where you literally have to duck your head. Plus we can get hard and tshirts with our cottage’s name on it. But I often wonder what we would have called it if we could have named it ourselves.

    1. Kari,

      Duck Head cottage on a hill ? We are on Crescent Lake in NH and there is a cottage with that same name.

      1. Karen, Crescent lake in Acworth & unity or the one closer to Winni? Your last name wouldn’t happen to be MacLeod would it?!? If so we need to meet for wine!

        1. Hey Kari,

          Crescent Lake in Unity & Acworth and yes, last name is also MacLeod ! Would love to get together & meet.

          1. Karen, Will you be at the lake for Thanksgiving? If you will you should stop by for a drink Saturday night! We can invite the other MacLeods too (our brother and sister-in-law)

      1. Hi Kelly, I don’t know if there is a way for you to reach out to Karen to let her know that my Duck Head cottage is on Crescent Lake but how funny that she read my comment on this blog and we are on the same very little lake in NH….All of us in lakeside cottages have to stick together!! Love your blog and can’t wait to watch the new house unfold…

  26. What about “Perched on a Hill” or
    “Our Cottage…perched on a hill”? Hope all your projects turn out great.

  27. HI Kelly, congratulations on your new move. I can’t wait to see what you have up your sleeve with this new project! I know it will be fabulous. How about planting a few willows to replace the old ones that way you can still call your new home Willow Hill? I love the name but I am sure whatever you will come up with, will be great. I am a a big fan of yours. Best of luck. Celine

  28. What an exciting time for you! New challenges and designs plans that we can’t wait wait to see! Name could be “Lily Pad Lodge.” Your new home has multiple buildings and spaces and has the feel of a potential lodge. So many possibilities. As a side note, your font ‘s light gray color doesn’t have enough contrast and is difficult to read…

  29. I can’t wait to see what you do with this new place! we are fixing up an older home as well! Hang in there with the pool. We were in that same spot 3 summers ago, it gets better! You have to find a good pool store to be honest and help you….We couldn’t! They all kept selling us chemical after chemical. Got very frustrating! I cried a lot our first year of open. Now I have found an awesome Pool Guy. He works pools on his own, and he is awesome and so helpful! We Love him!

    Good luck! Enjoy every process of the home reno! It is an amazing and tiring thing all at once!

  30. Alas, I am bereft of new house names…..although I liked the idea the other lady, Kay had, of replanting the green branches, because that name sounds like a fairy tale, and it’s quite magical.

  31. If you want to replant willows take some nice green branches and stick them in a bucket of water until they develop roots. Then put them in the ground. That is how those willow trees were started many years ago.

    1. I think you should keep it Willow Hill. You are breathing life back into what was once someone else’s hopes and dreams for the future and the Willows should be replanted. The circle of life. Don’t change your first gut instinct. It’s usually the first one you think of for a reason and it has a great ring to it.

    2. I didn’t know you could do that, thanks for the tip Kay! Love hearing all the history behind this property, thanks for sharing with me :)

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