DIY Home Renovation Burnout

I’m finally admitting this. I haven’t blogged in a while…why? Simply put, burnout. If your reading this, then maybe that’s you too.

We have had great benefits to DIY Home Renovation. We have saved lots of money, learned a ton of skills with construction and had a great time with family doing it.

Here’s what’s happening with our house right now. We are 7 years in this home and we have gone as far as we can. We have, upgraded the kitchen floor, rebuilt the fences, deck and basement playroom. We also have done lots of painting in the kids bedrooms.

Home Renovation Burnout is real. Even if you have someone doing the renovation for you, there’s delays on materials and deadlines get bumped for example.


Your like us and Do It Yourself. It’s great – save us some money, we put some sweat equity into our home. Yes, we have saved lots of money, but we are burnt out.

The only thing we had done by someone else in our basement was the carpet. Our deck, we got a quote…then we decided to do it ourselves.

The only reason why we didn’t hire a company, is because we got to built a BIGGER deck for close to the same amount we got quoted for a smaller deck.

Our deck reno we hired out the vinyl and the railing. Truthfully, the deck AND the basement still need some extra work.

We don’t like be the 90% of completion people. That’s not our style to not complete a reno…but honestly, it comes down to burnout.

DIY Home Renovation Burnout from our experience is getting the space planned out to what we need it to be, working hard at it and near the finish line we stop.

Can you relate?

Burnout happens in all areas of our lives at one point or another. When it comes to the where you live day in and day out it becomes stressful.

There is the excitement in the beginning! The planning and envisioning how it can look. Today, there is so much available to get inspired. I actually got so addicted to Interior Design magazines and TV shows I had to completely cut myself off.

I love seeing the transformation happen on other peoples homes, when it’s yours, that’s a whole other experience. The experience can be great or not so great. We did our townhouse “flip” without kids. Now we are in our home and doing reno’s with kids…not so great.

How we are managing with DIY Home Renovation Burnout?

Simple put, taking time OFF. Enjoying our family and focusing on ourselves. Our home was always LIVEABLE when we moved in. It’s just the reality of buying a fixer -upper.

We go AWAY on the weekends. Day trips or camping if we can!

Yes – can we make time to complete these last few things, absolutely. Our kids know when it’s a working weekend. Those are becoming far and few between now.

With my husband’s recent job he goes on call now. Our kids know if he’s on call that means we are working on something for the house.

Will we buy a fixer upper again – NO. My husband and I are both in agreement on this.

Is this our forever home? NO

Our dream is still property. We are praying like our friends did for property. That’s my husband checking out their 130 Acres of absolute bliss.

They recently bought a large parcel of land and are in the beginning stages of clearing it, getting the services in and next year building a brand new home.

This is still a dream, which may feel a long way off right now, but we aren’t letting go of that.

It’s sure great to visit and cheer/support our friends.

What’s next for our Home?

Yet again our home has dictated that for us. Our good old fixer upper sprung a leak again.

This is in a part of our home I haven’t shared on the blog…..yet. It’ll make for a great transformation photos I promise you that.

I actually had a great before and after for one of the areas and our home AGAIN was non stop with water leaks…and here we are again.

Can you guess what our next reno is?

Some way, somehow the funds become available and we plug along.

Good thing we live super frugal lives. People are always shocked when I share some of the things we do.

The joys of homeownership.

Hopefully the burnout feeling ends soon and we get our energy back. We simply can’t live with another possible flood in our house. I’ve stopped a few. Good thing I’m observant.

I’m off on another getaway adventure. Yes – I’ll be taking you all along on the journey of that next reno. We choose the DIY life and have learned a lot and now it’s time to keep resting and saving for the next reno.

Carrie Plantinga

Vegetable Garden Planning

Hello! Lots is happening here at our home in the Fraser Valley of Beautiful BC., Canada. Technically we aren’t allowed to leave our area so we have been working hard at our backyard and garden.

This year I’m actually being somewhat organized. More then I ever have, and I’m already noticing a huge difference. Always write your goals down as to what you want to do for you garden (or any project) and get to work.

Yard Preparation

First things first…FIX MY MISTAKES. I wrote a raised bed mistake blog post last year. I was NOT doing another year with an invasive plant coming up.

I dug down and buried cardboard like I should have done and so far nothing has come back up.

Next, We made MORE GARDEN SPACE. I have a BIG goal of making our property a suburban homestead while still having space for the kids.

I can’t wait to share the final reveal for this area. It’s changed so much already. If you watch the video at the end of this post on YouTube you will see more of what we did.

Here’s how the raised bed is today. It’s needs some maintenance for weeding but no more invasive plant.

DIY Vegetable Garden Planning

Anyone else just throw some seeds in pots and water and hope for the best? This is how I used to be. I just bought seeds and just went with it. Not this year. I felt strongly last year for plant more and learn a better way to grow food for my family.

This is the most simple and EASY way to plan. It’s never too late to make one of these.

I literally just bought a binder (white with clear plastic slip cover) from the dollar store. Grabbed some gardening magazines and some paper and tabs. With the gardening magazines I found words that fit my goals and pictures I’m inspired by for my garden.

I now have a planning binder. For barely any money and simple.

I created a map of our backyard. I have to update this as we have planted more trees and such.

I also made tabs for Seed Inventory, Planting Log, Gardening Goals and Garden Maps. Make tabs for whatever you feel fits for what you want to keep organized.

Have fun with this. Each Garden is unique because we are all different people. I l hope this was helpful to you in your gardening journey.

Here’s a video with more of how our yard is currently with a sneak peak of our new fence. There’s much more to come. Subscribe to the Blog and My YouTube Channel for upcoming content.

Enjoy and have a great weekend.

Carrie Plantinga

Home and Garden Blogger

Spring To Do List

Hello Hello, It’s been a little while since I’ve been on my blog. We’ve been busy working, as you will see in this blog post. Our Backyard is going through ANOTHER MASSIVE transformation.

I have another blog post I wrote a few years ago where you can see everything we have done. You can read that HERE

Last Year we finished our Deck and this year it’s our back fence, plus other stuff that is coming.

I haven’t done ANYTHING with my Garden this year. I’ll be doing a beginner gardening blog post shortly.

Spring To Do List

Home Decor

I’m super happy how this turned out. It’s simple…very garden inspired and a bit of rustic farmhouse. I honestly use what I have and don’t spend much money on decor. This is the result. Be creative in your own home and have fun with what you have.

This BIG transformation is the backyard, yet again. We get super busy with our property every spring.

Everyone’s backyard to do list is different. Here’s what’s going on in our backyard.

Hedge and Fence Removal!

Here’s a great BEFORE shot. I still can’t believe we looked at this for 7 long years. Everyone said we would loose our privacy, blah blah blah. Well, here’s what it looks like today.

Massive change right!! It’s been a lot of hard work. With what’s coming is so much better then what was there before. Yes, we will get some privacy back. I can’t wait to share with you what’s coming.

You can watch the hedge removal HERE!

Garden Bed Clean Up

My Gardens are FINALLY showing some life again. My chives are coming along nicely. I moved them last fall.

I also moved my rhubarb and it’s coming back…Some tasty treats coming to our kitchen soon. Both of these used to be in my raised garden beds and they were taking up too much space…They got a new home and I think they are happy where they are.

Backyard Planning??

So, you have seen that we ripped out our hedge. What is going to go back into there. Here’s a sneak peak. My suburban homestead dreams are starting to coming TRUE…

Those right there friends are MATURE blueberry bushes. I’m so hoping I get a great harvest from these plants. They are HUGE….

Also, on the to do list is the greenhouse. I saw an opportunity to remove the dirt while our backyard is mayhem at the moment. I’m taking out the garden boxes in the greenhouse. Just another spring project.

Coming soon, a vertical gardening post for those who live in town and have small spaces. I scored this pallet from my neighbor. Those asking on Instagram, it’s coming. So many options to grow on a patio.

FYI – I got a new camera lens as mine broke and was missing a lens cap. I’m excited for more creative pictures like this one.

One of the reasons I wasn’t blogging for a bit. My equipment was down, AND we had to say goodbye to our family pet. I’ll be updating my puppy post in the near future. I’ll explain more on there shortly. Just need some more time to heal.

We will see you VERY SOON. I have lots of content to create and make.

Have a great day!


Basement Reveal

It’s HERE, We finally got some custom orders we have been waiting for arrive. We still have some things to finish, as most DIY reno’s go. Here’s our DIY Basement Reno.

Completed Playroom

We are so grateful for how this turned out. We thought we had to space this reno out. The funds became available and since we had the plans sorted out we got to do more then we thought possible.

So much of what fits in this cabinet was spread out throughout our house. Now it finally has a home. We’ve already been spending lots of our time down here with family movie and game nights.

We often (not this past year of course) host family and friends from out of town. We got this sofa that has storage in the chaise and pulls out into a bed. It’s almost always out. Plus the kids toys are already getting pulled under the pull out portion.

Work in Progress

Paint the Door, Paint the trim, install the trim, secure the bookshelf and create secret door for the storage….is just a few things that needs to get done yet. Yes – we found a fun solution for the under stair’s storage.

3 Doors…3 DOORS used to be in this space. It now opens up to my working desk area. The desk will also be multi purpose for a board game/puzzle table. We still have to make a simple desk, a folding table is working for now.

Oops. This picture turned out blurry. I’ve already be plugging away at my sewing machine making projects. I have some DIY stuff coming up that needs to be made. Plus lots of more blogging and a music ministry to get going.

Once We have this area more put together I’ll share that at a later time.

Until now we just enjoy the view.

This is our friend Rino Favlo’s photo. You can go to his website HERE. It’s been a dream of ours to start bringing in either our own photography on the walls or that of family and friends.

As our home is in the West Coast of Canada this picture suites our basement. Plus it’s covering our control panel.

I added some before photos here included in the video on YouTube. I DON’T miss how this used to be.

Hope you enjoyed this room transformation. I look forward to lots of great new memories in this space.

Coming soon on the blog, SPRING is in the air isn’t it?

See you on the next blog post.


Have a great day!

Carrie Plantinga – Home and Garden Blogger

Home and Garden Niche

Hey, Carrie here sharing today all about my experience this past year defining my blog into a niche. Last year I finally ‘Niched down’, if that is even a phrase?

Narrowing down my niche made a huge impact. Yes – 2020 people where online a whole lot more then they probably already where. So how is being in the Home and Garden Niche? How did I realize it was for me?

Why Home and Garden?

Answer this question: ‘What is my home filled with?’ , ‘Is there a recurring theme in your D├ęcor?’. When I heard that question on the radio when I first got married in 2008 something clicked. I have something Nature related all around my rental home.

My blog for 3 years or more, had no real direction. I kind of shared random blog posts that I thought would be helpful. I’ve got lots of odd posts that have nothing to do with Home and Garden. BUT…BUT…I was already doing it without knowing it.

What is truly on your heart will come out in how you speak/write/talk. I spoke more about this on my blog post I wrote HERE.

What Changed with My Blog?

My subscribers became stable. People subscribe and unsubscribe all the time, I do that too. However, my numbers grew. Even the blog itself on it’s views DOUBLED.

I got to collaborate and be featured on another blog. Sharing about easy garden vegetables to grow.

I also got a discount on one of our reno’s to feature their logo and company on my blog.

Added Bonus – I get to live my life I normally do and share about my Home and Garden, which come easy to me. Home life being a stay at home mom makes it a challenge to keep up.

Blogging Challenges

I MUCH prefer being outside then creating content. I really love to get the message out to get OFF your screens. Writing a blog that’s Home and Garden, means I’m busy taking care of the HOME AND GARDEN. I make sure to remember to grab my camera. I’ll post this here shortly and walk away, because my garden is calling.

Being online is all about pictures. My house is a living house, not one that’s on display all the time and it’s not always perfectly clean. Most days I could care less to clean up and get that PERFECT shot. I much prefer to be REAL.

Lastly, it feels like from what I read about blogging. I should have AMAZING CONTENT and it should be INCREDIBLE all the time. Yah, nooo…life is life.

Time for me to get OFF the computer. Spend time with my kids and get outside.

Hope this blog post was helpful. I’ve had lots of other bloggers that have inspired me along the way.

Here’s a video to catch more pictures of what I do.

Back to ‘Normal’, New Year

Hey Everyone, January is 1/2 over! I’ve told myself to stay positive and keep my head above all the sad media that’s been going on over this past year. Plus coming into the new year. I like to just say, after Christmas and New Years, plus my sons birthday this past week we are getting back to ‘normal’.

All the regular house cleaning still chugs along at it’s regular pace with making food, dishes, laundry and cleaning. Those things never change. I’m super grateful the kids still go to school for in class instruction.

Something I haven’t jumped back into is blogging and creating content. I’ve been enjoying the break. I’ve actually heard a few other content creators admit the same thing. This past year was hard for being online with an online presence. I’m super small with my corner of the internet but, that small part of me that wants to shut this all down, was very strong last year.

Truthfully though, I love taking pictures and being creative. I share about our home and garden, not because it’s about me. This blog isn’t just about my home and garden. I love helping others too. Plus I wouldn’t get to share fun projects like our current reno.

Yes – Our project got a little further then we expected. It’s all coming together though! Carpet is coming Friday, We just finished the last sanding. Some more prep to do and then Paint! I’ll update you all about that very shortly here.

At the moment after I publish this and edit my YouTube video, it’s back to laundry. Stay at home mom life never ends. House work always needs to get completed.

We have LOTS of projects this year. Including painting of other rooms in our house. We have LOTS of backyard/garden projects happening too.

Be great to have you subscribe.

Thank you to those who read and subscribe to my blog. 2020 was a massive growth year, blog views DOUBLED. 2020 was actually a huge blessing to our family. My heart goes out to those who had a tough year.

Until my next blog post have a great day!

Carrie Plantinga

Christmas 2020 at Notefull Living

It’s Christmas Eve 2020. What am I doing. Writing a blog post and not spending the day with my family over Christmas. Why – Simply we aren’t allowed. One thing I won’t do – be defeated by this intense year. I’ve been super careful not to vent on here about current world events.

Tonight, not being at my parents house in the country, by the woodstove and watching my kids play in the snow at their grandparents sucks.

Snow at my childhood home. With the rope swing under the honeysuckle bushes.

By the way. I had some awesome pictures of the snow at our place. We don’t often get much snow here in the Fraser Valley – well it comes and doesn’t stay long. Those pictures I accidently deleted.

I’m just a tired stay at home mom of 3 kids and finally has her husband home on christmas holidays and I’m crashing hard.

Not having a date night or childcare in over a year is taking it’s toll.

Our tree was cut down a few weeks ago and the kids and I decorated the mantel at the end of november.

I haven’t written on my blog in over a month as life just has been FULL at the end of the year. So much so – I dropped social media and seriously considering dropping it all together.


My husband and I have made a motto this year to keep life as normal as possible and not allow this year (FEAR) to overtake our lives. Fear is something bully’s use to control others they are intimidated by. I’m grateful for my Faith in my Lord Jesus Christ who is my Saviour.

A few weeks ago I asked God what to do about this year and what’s happening. All I heard was this: SPREAD JOY.

My son had a dress up day at school and to support him I wore my fun suit all day too. Instead of getting dirty looks when I’m well away from others and not wearing a mask I got smiles when people saw my outfit.

This year isn’t over.

I will say this – I truly felt like the entire world needed a hug this year. And for all those affected by current events, I wish I could afford to give you a dinner.

In our house we don’t celebrate Santa Claus, even though we have these suits as a last minute purchase last year trying to make a fun family photo. We do share with our kids the biblical account of Jesus’s birth. Plus share the story of the man who inspired the ‘fictional’ character of Santa Claus.

I really look forward to sharing meals with friends and family again. Like this ham we cooked up for our families dinner tonight. Our kids were fighting over the cracklins.

Here’s the Video Christmas Video on YouTube with more behind the scenes of our December.

I wish you all a Merry Christmas

Notefull Living

Disclaimer: You may have noticed I carry a very different view then most of what is being told to us by the media in regards to current events. By no means do I mean any disrespect to those impacted by this virus.


It’s November 11, 2020. I have a message to share with you Today.

Today I need to pause my usual writing about our home and garden in the Fraser Valley and share something on my mind that needs to be shared.

Today is Remembrance Day. My husband is home and we watched the ceremony that was done in Ottawa on TV this morning with our kids. It’s the closest thing we could do this morning to participate aside from being silent at 11am and wearing a poppy.

Our son actually hand made poppies for the entire family this morning.

One of my grandfathers served in the army and another one hid. Both are passed on now. The one who hid had a disability and wasn’t able to serve even though he was old enough. I’ve also heard stories of soldiers living with one of the families. I don’t remember all the details anymore, that’s just the nuts of bolts of it.

Knowing my family is connected to the wars of the past makes remembrance day all the more real.

Remembrance Day is a Holiday that we as a family stand up and remember.

Notefull Living

Thing is (not everyone will agree with what I’m about to share), war is happening all around us, not everyone is aware of it. I’ve never been ashamed for my relationship with Jesus.

There’s a spiritual war raging all around us and I would think from seeing our world lately, even if they don’t believe in Jesus, can all see the intensity of evil happening.

So why write about Remembrance Day and Jesus?

The word Remembrance is something I grew up hearing a lot. Not just for Remembrance Day. In Church we had a massive table upfront with the inscription ‘Do this in Remembrance of Me’. I would watch the pastor break bread and theatrically pour ‘juice’ from a nice looking jug into a metal cup.

As a kid this was just something I saw our church do and my parents participate in what is known as ‘ The Lords Supper’. As an Adult I witnessed many different ways churches did this.

One church was so small we passed a loaf around. Another church we stood in a circle with others passing the bread and juice. We would say to each other “Christ’s body broken for you” and “Christ’s blood shed for you”. Yes – sounds gross but the significance is huge.

Here’s the thing: The Bible is a LOVE story FILLED with war stories. It’s also filled with warning, prophecy and instruction on how to battle spiritual warfare, particularly in Ephesians 6.

As I said – I’m not ashamed for believing in the truth. The Spiritual warfare in my own life has intensified this year and I’m so grateful for those who have put on their armor/gift (of deliverance) and with the Holy Spirit are helping me fight.

One of the best examples of War on this earth and Faith is from a movie called Hacksaw Ridge. Which I plan to watch tonight after I publish this. True story of a soldier fighting in world war 2 and he saves many wounded soldiers while praying out loud to God “Let me just find one more”, He proceeds find and repel 75 wounded soldiers over a ridge.

In our country in Canada we have one day a year that we pause and remember those who have fought in war. Everyday as a Follower of Jesus I stand and fight with the armor of God and Pray for just one more soul to turn to Him.

On my blog I share about our Home and Garden. The more I share on here the more you will see we don’t live like the ways of our culture. I have no words to describe our world, it’s sure looking and sounding more like Sodom and Gomorrah from the Bible. The Bible doesn’t really explain what it was like before Noah built his ark, before God wiped out all the wicked.

For those tired of waiting, He’s coming. I’m not called to be ‘of’ the world just live ‘in’ it till Christ Returns.

I hope you have read this far to the end. I’m sure I’ve lost a few along the way.

I wasn’t expecting to write this post today, but this message needs to be heard. Even if this post helps “just one more”, like Desmond in World War 2.

Remember – There is a war raging all around us, God has already won. What’s happening in our time isn’t really a surprise, it’s all written in the Bible. He’s coming soon.

Peace be with YOU,


I’m expecting this post to be deleted from certain social media networks, if this has resonated with you and you want to share this, e-mail this post.

Basement Design Plans

Our basement is starting to take shape! Yes – we are only focusing on ONE wall right now. As it is with any reno just the act of getting started is exciting to know your making progress for a better home.

I can already tell as a family we are missing this extra space. Especially with it being colder the kids don’t play outside and we are all inside in each others space.

Our trailer will be winterized soon and picture like this one with the boys on the lake in our fishing boat in September are now just fun memories of summer.

Add COVID into this where we can’t really see anyone at the moment – we are all super cozy and getting closer as a family. We are seeing lots of blessings during all this.

Basement Update

Here’s the wall and what it’s looked like for the last 6 years. I’m NOT missing this at all. Did it function, yes, but we’ve learned we made a good choice to open it up with the issues we found – just like any reno.

Here’s the wall all after all the demo. A blank canvas. I was excited for the next step. FYI – Any home reno you do on your own takes TIME. This room sat like this for a few months during the summer after we did the demo.


Once that insulation went into the fireplace the room got INSTANTLY warmer. Even though the room is a construction zone, we enjoy being down there now that it’s warmer. Plus, we are coming into winter and this room is warm, it’s just awesome.

Design Plans

I’m not a designer and as much as I write a blog and now have started with YouTube this year I like being hands on. I’ve tried putting my designs into google sketch up over the years and I just like drawing it out.

Obviously there’s a TV in the center of the wall. The brown lines are live edge shelves. The ‘bear’ picture (4 year old thought it was a pig), is covering the electrical panel. The cabinet on the bottom of the wall is from Ikea. We looked long and hard to find something that fit for an affordable cost.

We learned we have a gas line coming down out of the ceiling. So we made a bulkhead that goes all the way across this wall. We will be installing 4 lights that will light up this wall.

If this was hard to understand, I explain it more on the video on YouTube found here:

It’s a day off tomorrow and there’s already been lots of progress since I made this video. Tomorrow we remember those who died during war and will hold a moment of silence at 11am, and keep working at it.

I hope you enjoyed this little update. I personally greatly appreciate watching others renovate their homes. It’s great to see how it all comes together.

Have a great day!

Our NEW 2021 Forest River Grey Wolf RV

This might be a bit OFF topic on my blog. However family time and camping is a huge part of our life here at Notefull Living. We counted the days this year that we have been RVing and it’s 25 and counting.

We SOLD our old RV Trailer last month and bought a NEW 2021 Forest River Grey Wolf.

RV Tour

We have already taken it out for a camping trip and the FIRST night we had it home we slept in it.

Our Dog Kona wasn’t too sure what to do with all the space it has now.

Why Forest River?

1: Table and Banquet are bigger.

2: Fire Place

3: Built in ladder for the bunks

4: BUNKS! These bunks are huge and have a big opening to climb in.

5: Access the bathroom and kitchen with the slide in while traveling

Traveling tip: Eat your own food on the road. Saves you LOTS of money and much healthier then fast food.

Notefull Living

6: STORAGE: I’m so happy with our little bedroom. I can stand by the bed and just get something from the cupboards above the bed. Our old trailer – which I don’t miss – I had to jump on the bed.

Plus there’s the pantry – storage under the banquet and the outside storage is great. Plus a rack on the BACK of the trailer so we can store our BIKES!

My DIY RV Decor fit right in on top of the fireplace! Click on the link to get the FREE printable welcome sign.

Last and final reason why we bought this trailer:

7: It’s our anniversary gift! My husband and I rarely buy gifts for each other and sacrifice a lot for our family. This trailer means lots of family adventures ahead.

While cleaning our daughter wanted to hangout in the bunks.

Watch the full video Here:

Do you own an RV? Do you go Camping?

I love hearing where people go camping.

Comment below the places you have been!