Smith Family Renovations

Small town Nebraska does thoughtful, realistic renovations

Can’t Miss Spring Junkin’ Events

In springtime, the only pretty ring time, birds sing hey ding… a-ding, a-ding, sweet junkers love… the spring.

Alright, so it’s “sweet LOVERS love the spring“. And if you caught my reference, congratulations- you’re awesome ūüôā

Seriously though, I have been waiting and waiting for spring to roll around to get back on the junking trail.

Here are three of the can’t miss sales on my radar!

Junkstock Special Spring Edition

photo from

Junkstock is celebrating their five year anniversary by hosting a Spring Edition of their popular event. This sale set on  a picturesque Omaha dairy farm never disappoints. There are vendors from all walks of life selling vintage, antique, rustic, primitive, and handmade goods. Why go to Junkstock twice a year when you can go three times! The special Spring Edition is April 8-10. Click the link above for directions and more information.

Farmyard Flea Market, hosted by Whispering Acres Tails and Treasures

image from their facebook event page, linked above

A farmyard flea market sounds like a perfect combination. This is the first year for the sale which will feature face painting, petting zoo, and concessions, and OF COURSE vendors selling their junk and handmade items. This fun-for-the-whole-family event is located in Janssen, Nebraska and goes down April 29, 30, and May 1 from 9 to 5 each day. For more info click the link above.

Rural Route Rust Vintage and Handmade Market

photo from their facebook event page

This is one sale that I’ve always wanted to go to, but we’ve never made it. I’m reeeeally hoping to change that this year. I love that it’s located on a historic farm and pumpkin patch near Avoca, Nebraska. They’re boasting 55 of the best vendors in the Midwest along with a play area for kids, farm animals to visit, and tasty concessions options. This one day sale is happening April 16, 10 to 5 pm. ¬†You can find out more on their Facebook event page, linked above.


Well now you’ll know where to find me this spring– at these sales or getting our camper ready to roll! Happy spring!


Reclaiming our Basement: Decisions and Progress

Oh yes, we made some decisions and jumped right in.

My ‘reclaiming our basement’ introduction post can be found by clicking the photo!

Reclaiming Our

SO, as you read before, we are completely renovating our basement after some flooding last summer/fall. ¬†New flooring, some new drywall, new paint. ¬†I was hung up on all the decisions! Continue reading “Reclaiming our Basement: Decisions and Progress”

The Only Tater Tot Casserole Recipe You’ll Ever Need

This recipe is a family favorite around here! It’s yummy and cheesy and chock full of veggies.

I’ve done some tinkering with my recipe. My tater tot casserole has been too vegetable-y, too soggy, too dry, and has come out undercooked, especially in the veggie department. But this is the way to do it. I hope your family loves it like mine! It really is…


The Only Tater Tot Casserole Recipe You’ll Ever Need

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5 Gorgeously Restored Vintage Campers + our before sneak peak

Holy smokes, I have spent A LOT of time looking at updated¬†vintage campers on the interwebz lately. Pinterest, Facebook, Youtube, google searches, the whole nine yards. I’ve been there – combing through pictures and videos and tutorials til the wee hours of the morning.

Literally, that’s why I haven’t posted a new post for like three weeks. I’ve been busy looking for all the vintage travel trailer info I could feast my eyes on. Why? Why, you ask. Well we may or may not be getting an old camper to redo ourselves!

We are!!!! Just waiting for a couple details to be taken care of on our end.

Once we get that ball rollin’ you know I will be sharing the process with you all. For now, I wanted to do a Wednesday (P)inspiration post to show you a glimpse into the world of gorgeously updated campers.

Darla 1966


From Instagram user¬†Becki, this is probably my favorite “glamper” pic I’ve found! That green is the perfect combination of fresh and vintage. ¬†And a camper with an ikat blacksplash? Classy! ¬†There are a few more shots of this little gem on her Insta account.

The Yellowstone


I tracked down this beauty of a travel trailer to the There’s No Place like Homemade blog, though it was also featured by Country Living magazine! Cozy and cheery, I love that instead of painting the wood interior, she stained it. It’s very cute! I totally dig that color combo.

1968 Serro Scotty


This camper is delish. ¬†They packed in a lot of storage and function, while keeping a few of the original elements, like the flooring. Plus I -of course- love that exterior color; it’s so playful! That mustardy color is really working for me too. ¬†Find more photos of this camper here.

The Little Home

Admittedly, grey and yellow are my favorite colors. So this makeover grabbed my eye. And once I read a little about it, wow! Meseidy, author of The Noshery blog along with her husband and dogs all moved into this 150 square foot camper! It’s colorful and modern, and I love it! ¬†Since then, they’ve kept living small, but have upgraded to a larger model. ¬†I really recommend you check their remodel process, which Meseidy beautifully documented on her blog! See all their camper projects here .

Pink Paradise


The pink! The chandelier! This lady has got glamping figured out! And isn’t that yellow stove adorable? ¬†It was hard to choose just one photo of this glamper, because it is all-around beautiful. ¬†You can find more photos of the Pink Paradise here, including the cedar planked bathroom. It is lovely!

Well there’s where my inspiration is coming from for this exciting project! I’m gonna show you a picture of the exterior of the our soon-to-be 1971 camper.


I don’t know if we’ll change the exterior, but I wanted to show this baby off. ¬†I’m still looking for a name of her, so if you have any ideas let me know ūüôā

My pal Cassie is also updating a vintage camper over at so you can follow along with her, too!





Reclaiming our Basement

As some of my IRL friends know, we experienced some flooding in our basement this last year. It was an unseasonably wet spring, summer, and fall in our area. Local rivers escaped their banks, whole houses were under water, and in neighboring states some lost their lives.

We got off easy, and I thank the Lord for that. But we still had some work to do. Our problem was compounded by a couple of factors that caused the water to sit unacknowledged for some time.

We had mold in the carpets and the drywall. All the carpets came out and the affected drywall was eventually replaced. I’m so thankful to not have the scary mold monster in my house anymore.

We’re at the point now where it’s time to paint and lay new flooring. The space is practically a blank page to design however I would like.

This thought really excites me! But there’s just one problem. I am not sure how I want our basement to look. I don’t know what sort of aestetic to go with. I can’t even decide on a paint color.

Well I guess I better get to figuring this out. We have been without our basement for a long time! Not just because of the flooding, but because we had people staying with us before then.

I’m ready to spread out some!

I’m ready to have living space on the same floor as our laundry.

I’m ready to get the kids’ toys back downstairs!

Join me on this journey as we put our basement back together, and reclaim our house!

Mouth Watering Mexican Marinade

Marinading your meat or veggies is a simple and effective way to get more flavor in your favorite dishes. It’s a technique that I think is often overlooked by home cooks. ¬†I can admit that I don’t use marinades as often as I could. ¬†Sometimes I forget until there isn’t enough time to before I have to start cooking. And sometimes I don’t have the right ingredients on hand. ¬†(Can you tell I need to re-read my own “Meal Planning 101” Post?) With this marinade recipe I had all but one of the ingredients in my fridge or pantry.

This marinade could be used on steak, chicken, beef roasts, and veggies.  Today I am using it to give a blade roast some Mexican flair so that I can make yummy pulled beef tacos.

Mouth Watering Mexican Marinade

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Reclaimed Wood DIY Coat Rack

Hey readers! Isn’t it just wonderful when you give the perfect gift to a loved one? Maybe it’s the gift that she never knew she needed. Or the gift he really wanted but never expected to get. ¬†It is such a great feeling to have your gift truly appreciated, and for your efforts to be recognized.

This Christmas Tim and I gave my Grandma Schwartz the perfect gift.  I really hate to brag, but even she said it was perfect.  Useful, attractive, needed, and handmade just for her.

What was this awesome gift? A coat rack.

Doesn’t sound so special does it? Well, she really needed one, and had for some time. ¬†We had talked about it before, and we weren’t sure where to get one. ¬†Her old one had a habit of A. Not holding enough coats, and B. Falling over.

So the idea of making one for her came to mind.  And of course I went to Pinterest to find some inspiration.

Our main inspiration was from the blog Shanty 2 Chic. ¬†I figured it would be more beneficial for you to view their tutorial, because these ladies know how to make stuff and more importantly how to document and describe the steps. Click the next photo to visit their blog! Keep scrolling here to see how we put ours together and how grandma’s coat rack turned out.


DIY Reclaimed Wood Coat Tree

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A Handmade Smith Family Christmas

While it’s a little late to be offering you Christmas gift giving ideas, I thought I’d give a run down of the handmade gifts we made and gave this holiday season. These are items you could make for yourself or give to loved ones any time of year.

First up are these hookboards. Click the link to see the complete tutorial!

Continue reading “A Handmade Smith Family Christmas”

Homemade Beef Stroganoff

Are you in the mood for something different at meal time? This beef stroganoff recipe is one I pull out when I am sick of making -and eating- the same old things week after week.

The last few days here have been wet and dreary. And I’ve had to be out in it more than I’d like.¬† I needed a meal that was warm and comforting today. This hit the spot perfectly.

It is creamy and savory and a big hit at our house! I hope you enjoy it, too.

Easy and Creamy Homemade Beef Stroganoff

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