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Subscribe at w w w.lakeandhomemagazine.com YEAR 22 | ISSUE 2 | MARCH / APRIL 2021


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YEAR 22 • ISSUE 2 • MARCH / APRIL 2021 subscribe online at: www.lakeandhomemagazine.com

CONTENTS

10 OFFICE

Meet Our Team

14 OFFICE

From the Office by Bekki Newbrough

40

FLOORING

Choosing the Right Flooring for You by Alicia Underlee Nelson

64

DO IT YOURSELF

3 Ways to Create Serenity at Home by Alicia Underlee Nelson

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INTERIOR DESIGN

A Color Theory Primer by Alicia Underlee Nelson

52 RECIPES

Seasonal Flavors A Taste of Spring

by Alicia Underlee Nelson

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INTERIOR DESIGN

How to Style Vignettes by Danae Branson

28 BUILDING

It’s Not Easy Being Green Protecting the Environment through Responsible Building Practices by Patrice Peterson

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CABIN UPKEEP

Pests

The Uninvited House Guests by Jen Miller

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BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT

Dan Johnson Construction by Andrea Canning


130 SHOPPING

Service Directory

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FEATURE HOME

Truitt Family Treehouse Northwoods Living on Thunder Lake by Alicia Underlee Nelson

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SHOPPING

Lake Gifts

FEATURE HOME

An Up North Dream Come True

Unique in Minnesota - Gifts for the Lake Lover

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by Patrice Peterson

FEATURED LAKE

Thunder Lake

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FEATURE HOME

Practice Makes Perfect Family’s Extensive Building Experience Results in Simple, Yet Elegant Home by Craig Gustafson

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FEATURE HOME

Getaway on the Lake by Angela Garvin

Cover photo Luminous Prints Story on page 110

Cass County

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Year 22, Issue 2 • MARCH / APRIL 2021 PUBLISHER - Kip Johnson EDITORS - Brent and Jennifer Rogness LAKE & HOME MAGAZINE – ADVERTISING SALES Jerry Shea • 218.205.7454 • jerry@lakeandhomemagazine.com Renee Redenius • 701.212.7227 • renee@lakeandhomemagazine.com Becky Haarstad • 262.994.8744 • rebecca@lakeandhomemagazine.com Terri Jo Peery • 320.491.5618• terrijo@lakeandhomemagazine.com   SUBSCRIPTIONS In the U.S., one year $24.95; two years $43.50; three years $55.00. Elsewhere add $5.00 per issue. Back issues are available for $5.00 per issue, plus shipping and handling. Subscriptions can be purchased online at lakeandhomemagazine.com/products

LAKE & HOME MAGAZINE Published bimonthly by Compass Media | 126 S Vine St | Fergus Falls, MN 56537

www.lakeandhomemagazine.com artwork@lakeandhomemagazine.com Unless previously agreed, all rights remain the sole property of Lake & Home Magazine. ©2020 Compass Media. Except for purposes of review, material contained herein may not be reproduced without prior written consent. Printed by Hess Print Solutions, USA


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FROM THE OFFICE

From the Office

A new year signals a time for renewal and focus. The kids are back in school, plans are made for springtime, and the house invites us to consider our projects for this year.

My household is busy making lists of everything we would change, and creating a plan for our next home. Winter has made inside feel a little more cramped than it was during the summer, so more space is a must. We realized that we want lights in certain areas that feel too dark, and wish there were electrical outlets in places that don’t have them. It has become a lengthy checklist that might make finding the perfect home a little more challenging. I’m excited to take that on when the time is right. If you are also working on your checklist, whether it be for a build or just a new plan, please check out the Lake & Home Construction Planning Guide. This handy folder includes a very helpful list of tips to consider, and the guide has a listing of local businesses which may be just what you are looking for. Take one home today with the magazine and put it in with your clippings! You’ll find them on our racks at each of our locations throughout the year.

My bin of clippings is getting bigger with each year as I get closer to the day I’ll get started. I have a list of wants and needs, too many paint swatches to be realistic, and the most necessary set of design images. There are even a few fabric samples! I had no idea what a vignette was until I read about it, or how many choices there were in tile. The more I look, the more I find that I’d like to use. I feel like the more pieces I have, the easier the puzzle will be to put together... and I love puzzles.

Another January through March task is planning the garden. We organize everything early, so the rest is just the fun of growing things from seed. My green thumb seems to get greener around this time of year when the tiny seedlings start coming up, and I start smiling wider than I should. My excitement grows at getting back outside, and the threatening sunshine gives me the idea that it’s a good day for a walk. One year, in an ill-advised attempt at spontaneity, I went out on the first warm day in a dress. I remember that walk ending quickly.

See more from this home on page 96

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This year my walk might be a brisk jog in proper attire, but it will still be on the first warm day as tradition implores. Let’s celebrate springtime! Take a look at ways to build green, where you will find alternative materials that I had never seen before. Come learn about vignettes with me, and consider the newest design trends and color theories for 2021. I’ll be adding that swatch to my box. Bring serenity into your home, which I’ll be considering for my current small home. You’ll also meet Dan Johnson’s Construction team in our designer portfolio section. We have four beautiful, wow-factor homes that I thoroughly enjoyed hearing about. Welcome to March everyone! Let the ice melt, let the days get longer, and let us get outside again. My house will soon feel bigger, my garden is growing, and my smile is getting wider. ~L&H

Bekki Newbrough Office Administrator


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INTERIOR DESIGN

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olor is a language we understand at a glance. It’s primal, visceral and deeply personal. You don’t need to study color to know what you love. Just pay attention to your reactions and decorate with abandon.

But some of us aren’t so confident. We’re cautious – maybe even color-phobic. We want to know “the rules.” We want to make sure we’re doing things “right.” The good news is that adding color to your home is harder to mess up than you might think. By understanding the basics of color theory – how different colors are created and combined – we can better understand how to use them. We asked a few local color experts for advice about how to integrate color into our living spaces. They’ll help us discover colors we love, combine colors and use color theory to accomplish our design goals. Color Theory Basics Understanding basic color theory can help you understand color and learn more about why you gravitate toward certain colors. Knowing basic design terminology can also help you communicate your goals with the professionals who can help you make your vision a reality. “Design trends will come and go, but design language will stay forever,” explains Nicole Gagner, who teaches color theory to students as an adjunct professor at Bismarck State College and also runs a painting education business called Painter Nicole. “Being able to talk about that and what works and what doesn’t is going to be so much more useful.”

Hue

A hue is another word for color. In painting, it refers to a pure pigment that’s not mixed with anything else.

Tint

You can tint any hue by adding white. This reduces the saturation and lightens the color, creating a range of shades that fades into the pastel end of the color spectrum. Tinting is an excellent way to make a color you love feel softer and calmer.

Tone

A tone is created when you add gray to a color. This creates a range of colors that feel restful and muted. Tones are complex and easy to live with, since they mimic the nuanced colors often found in nature. Gray also darkens the color.

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Shade

You make a shade by adding black to a color. Adding more and more black creates an assortment of deep, rich colors that pair well with each other and with neutrals.

Primary Color

There are three primary colors – red, yellow and blue. These are pure hues that you can’t get by mixing other colors. “Rarely are you using primary colors in interior design,” explains Gagner. “It’s usually a much more subtle mixture.” Since primary colors are bold, resolutely cheerful and often remind us of childhood (the primary color trio is a favorite in nurseries and schools), most adults use them sparingly. They’re often used as accents or paired with neutrals.

Secondary Colors

There are three secondary colors – orange, green and violet. It can help to imagine the color wheel you studied in school. Secondary colors are found between the primary colors on the color wheel. They’re made by mixing together equal parts of the color on either side. For example, orange is made by mixing equal parts of its neighbor colors, red and yellow.

“Color is something that is truly unique to the individual. Color evokes emotion in people!” Liz Carlson Center of Design in Audubon

Tertiary Colors

There are six tertiary colors – yellow-orange, red-orange, red-violet, blue-violet, blue-green and yellow-green. They fall in between a primary color and a secondary color on the color wheel. Tertiary colors are made by combining equal parts of the primary and secondary color. So if you wanted a more complex blue, you could make blue-green by blending blue (a primary color) and green (a secondary color). 20 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021


Complimentary Colors

Complimentary colors are opposite of each other on the color wheel. They’re popular in branding – think the bright purple and gold of the Minnesota Vikings – because they catch and hold human attention. But they can be intense, so use them sparingly. “Think of Christmas colors, that red and green,” Gagner explains. “They vibrate at a similar frequency in your eye. If you pair complimentary colors of the same intensity, it’s almost too much.” Many designers and artists lower the saturation of one or both colors to make a complimentary color combination easier to live with. So a fan of the purple and yellow pairing might put a soft, gray-toned violet with a lightly tinted gold for a more soothing effect. Common Color Theory Questions Once you know the basics of color theory, it’s time to learn which colors you love and inject a little more color into your home. Our color experts answer a few common color questions to help you get started.

How can people better understand the colors they prefer? “Color is something that is truly unique to the individual,” says Liz Carlson, designer and owner of Center of Design in Audubon. “Color evokes emotion in people! When working with clients, if they have to think about if they like a color, it’s simple – they don’t.” So trust your instincts. You probably already gravitate toward certain colors. Seek out color that speaks to you in any form – wrapping paper, a piece of ribbon, textiles, your favorite flower, the border on your wedding china. Pull images you love from design magazines. Head to the hardware store and grab any paint swatch that grabs your attention. See which colors show up in your closet in accent pieces you like. The clues are all around you. If you can’t spot them, an artistic friend or an interior designer can help. “Oftentimes clients cannot always say which colors they love, but it seems they always know which they do not like,” says Jamie Wallace of Calla Lily Designs in Fergus Falls. “Meeting in their space, visiting with them and learning about important features in their

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Skip generalizations about the feelings a room “should” evoke. All that matters is how you’ll use the space. A room’s color should be consistent with its energy and purpose. “For example, red most commonly emotes feelings of determination, energy and strength, which makes it perfect for a workout/exercise room,” says Carlson. “However, if the function of your workout room is yoga, opt for a soft green.” (Or, she adds, any color that seems soothing to you. There are lots of options.) Colors appear different depending on their location and their proximity to other colors. The time of day and the season can also influence the color, so don’t rush your decision-making process. “Always test a color in every single part of the room. Look at it from different angles, in different light,” sughome such as existing flooring or treasured art pieces can gain a designer insight into the color palette that may best fit a client.” How can we learn which colors go together? That depends on what you mean by “go together.” Some color combinations are soothing, others are dynamic. The combination you choose depends both on your gut instincts and your goals for the room. The best way to learn which colors you like together is to play with different color combinations. Diving into your Pinterest and Houzz boards is a good way to start. But color really needs to be viewed in a room to be fully experienced, so don’t be afraid to get a little crafty to see which color combos you like the best. “I love doing collages with people that are art phobic,” says Gagner. “You can arrange cut up pieces of paper, so that it’s really easy to swap things out. Play with it, keep rearranging until something clicks. You can’t make mistakes.” How can we know what color is right for a room? “First of all, look at your space, the lighting (both natural and artificial), your likes with regards to color and most importantly the function of the room,” says Carlson. “What feeling or energy do you want to come across? Do you want to create a feeling of passion, intensity or creativity or a calming space?”

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“Always test a color in every single part of the room. Look at it from different angles, in different light,” Nicole Gagner / Painter Nicole


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gests Gagner. “Make a swatch, then let yourself forget about it. Once your brain has turned off and you come back to it fresh, you’ll get a completely new reaction. Give yourself time to be creative and work out those problems unconsciously.” How can we add color in small doses? “Color phobia is a very common experience for homeowners,” says Carlson. “I would suggest using the strongest (scariest) colors where they can be most easily changed out if the need arises: in the textiles of the room — pillows, throw blankets and curtains. Incorporating the color in the décor accents is not as scary as purchasing that bright yellow sofa.” Gagner suggests using art as a focal point, since it’s also easy to switch out if you decide you want a change. Wallace encourages her clients to find a colorful element in each room that inspires them – “a new shower curtain in a guest bath, a new comforter set in their master bedroom, new tile on a kitchen backsplash,” and use it to anchor the room. If you’re truly new to decorating with color, don’t be afraid to go slow. Wallace says that taking the time to find the right piece in the right shade is worth the wait. “When working with a client who loves white on white for their sole color choice, I enjoy finding an inspirational piece in our design that can bring a little joy and color into their life,” Wallace explains. “Sometimes it is in a unique stone selection for a countertop or custom paint on island cabinetry. Researching and getting to know my clients as friends allows me insight into colors that evoke joy for them.” How can color lovers really lean into their color obsession? Not everyone is scared of color. Homeowners with a vivid collection of art, furniture, textiles or decorative objects can run into their own design challenges. Color enthusiasts can incorporate neutrals to encourage a balance and focus the eye. “I have also had the pleasure of working with a few clients who love color and collect unique art pieces that accent that love,” says Wallace. “Include a neutral wood floor throughout a home to calm the eye or add clean white casework to allow the eye a place to rest.”

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Color lovers should also carefully consider how large, colorful furniture, oversized art or wall-to-wall paint will work within the room. Considering the color wheel when pondering pairings can help direct the desired result. For example, Carlson’s imaginary bright yellow sofa could look bold and intense paired against a purple wall, since they are equally saturated complimentary colors that command attention. But one of Wallace’s clients who loves wall-to-wall white could use the same sofa to provide a cheerful pop of color and a focal point for the room.

“Color phobia is a very common experience for homeowners, I would suggest using the strongest (scariest) colors where they can be most easily changed out if the need arises.” Liz Carlson / Center of Design in Audubon

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Darker shades like these (as well as deep browns, rich greens, and regal blues and burgundies) can make a sprawling room feel more intimate. Just be aware that your layout, architectural features and the availability of natural light in the room will also play a role.

Choose what you Love

There are so many ways to use color in your home. Color theory can help you understand why you gravitate toward certain hues and which colors work well together. But the most important thing is to choose colors that are right for you. “There are no rules,” says Carlson. “Color and design are creative, fun, individual. If a color speaks to you, go for it.” ~L&H Even colorful accents can change the temperature of a room. Covering that same yellow sofa with pillows in cheerful primary colors would give it a playful, quirky feeling. Soft pillows and a cozy blanket in black or gray might make it feel a bit more grounded, while crisp, white pillows generate a very different effect. How does paint make a room seem larger or smaller? “Soft, lighter colors make a room appear larger due to their reflective quality,” says Carlson. “They also maximize whatever natural light the room may already have.” White used to be the go-to for making a room look larger. But as homeowners got more curious, designers encouraged them to branch out to other soft neutrals like off white, cream and pale gray, as well as soothing blues, yellows, violets and greens. You can also layer those colors to amplify the effect. “Another trick of mine is to use a tone-on-tone color palette when coordinating all the details of the room – paint, flooring, textiles (pillows, blankets, comforters, window treatments, rugs and décor),” says Carlson. “This is a pleasing look to the eye that visually creates space and continuity.” Of course, there’s no rule that a small room needs to appear bigger at all. Many homeowners and designers heighten the intimacy of libraries, dens, offices, powder rooms and even bedrooms with moody, enveloping shades on the darker end of the spectrum. “Over the years, I have enjoyed going dark in those cozy spaces,” says Wallace. “Charcoal grays, navy blues, Urbane Bronze of Sherwin Williams are darker shades that can bring warmth and elegance to a smaller space allowing the illusion of grandeur. And when you compliment those dark walls with a similar hue on the ceiling, you lose the harsh contrast of a white ceiling line.”

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“When you compliment those dark walls with a similar hue on the ceiling, you lose the harsh contrast of a white ceiling line.” Jamie Wallace / Calla Lily Designs


B BUILDING


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hether building or remodeling, homeowners must take many different factors into consideration before beginning a project. While functionality is usually the overriding requirement, there are many other decisions to make as far as budget, timeline and design. More attention is also now being focused on building practices that are more environmentally responsible.

The most common environmentally responsible term in the construction industry is “building green.” Steve Northway, founder and principal of Construction Advocates, prefers a different expression. “I think ‘High Performance Home’ better describes what builders are trying to achieve,” says Northway, who is also known as The Building Coach®. “In today’s environment, it’s more of a common-sense approach about being sensitive to the use of energy and preserving our natural resources.” The most widely used rating system for building green is through a national program, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), which provides a framework for what it defines as “healthy, highly efficient, and cost-saving green buildings.”

There are different levels of LEED certification that residential builders can try to attain with each house, based on a point system. The foremost considerations are “energy use, water use, indoor environmental quality, material selection, and the building’s effects on its site.” Building a house that is LEED certified can provide the builder with proof of a level of expertise in best “green” practices. Whether or not a builder and homeowner decide to move forward with achieving the specific LEED certification, which can have additional costs, there are many other opportunities to incorporate sustainable practices into any building project.

“I think ‘High Performance Home’ better describes what builders are trying

photos provided by REAL SOLAR

to achieve. In today’s environment, it’s more of a common-sense approach about being sensitive to the use of energy and preserving our natural resources.”

Steve Northway

Construction Advocates


Solar Power

When thinking about saving energy, solar power is the first thing that comes to mind for many people. As the efficiency of solar panels continue to rise, and the overall costs continue to come down, it becomes more about total energy conservation. “The least expensive unit of energy is one that isn’t used,” says Ben Butcher, construction manager at REAL Solar, a company located in a totally solar-powered headquarters near Backus, Minn. “For many people, the big motivating factor is clean energy. Some people also want independence from utilities – and to know what the cost of their energy will be for the next 25 years.” One common misconception is that a huge area of land is needed for the location of the solar panels. “Every structure is different, but most of the time we can work with the space and meet each individual need, so everyone can realize the benefits solar energy has to offer,” Butcher continues. “Whether we’re installing solar panels for a local business or a lake home, we look forward to helping them see how they can achieve their goals.”

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Beyond energy conservation, another consideration is the question of return on investment (ROI). “By factoring in some federal and utility rebates, a residential system in the Midwest area generally takes 7-10 years for a payback,” according to Eric Mueller, project manager at REAL Solar. “The solar panel warranty has also improved to 25 years at 80 percent, further contributing to the ROI. That means it will be producing 80 percent of what it’s rated 25 years down the road.” As solar energy methods improve and costs come down, the business of capturing this renewable source will continue to expand.

Geothermal

Another alternative energy source is geothermal heating and cooling systems. Although the cost of the equipment and installation can be very expensive, it definitely reduces the amount of energy used to heat and cool a home, providing long-term environmental benefits.

There are a few different ways to install it, but it’s basically a series of wells with an underground piping system, called a “loop.” Water circulates in that loop, taking advantage of the consistent temperature deep underground to heat the home in the winter and cool it in the summer. “The extent of the energy used with a Geothermal system is the electricity to run the compressor pump, water pump, and the blower fan, which blows the air through the duct work in the house,” Northway explains. “If you’re interested in ROI, you need to run the numbers of any system you install. But if you’re also looking to protect the environment and the future of our planet, it can be an option worth considering.”

Insulation

Northway claims that there are other steps that can be taken when building or remodeling that could have a tremendous economic AND environmental payback.

“You can have the most efficient heating or cooling system, but if you don’t have the proper insulation, that efficiency can be compromised through uncontrolled air leakage, and you will pay more in the long run.”

Steve Northway

Construction Advocates

“You can have the most efficient heating or cooling system, but if you don’t have the proper insulation, that efficiency can be compromised through uncontrolled air leakage, and you will pay more in the long run,” he says. “Air sealing and insulation are part of the building ‘envelope’ around any inside space that is heated or cooled. It’s important to assess the builder’s quality and ask the right questions about how the insulation is chosen and installed.” For LEED certification, spray foam insulation is often chosen because it’s an all-in-one system – air barrier, vapor barrier and insulation – helping to prevent mold through seamless installation, and boosting energy efficiency by up to 40 percent, according to Corey Poepping, president of TriCounty Foam Insulation in Alexandria, Minn.

photos provided by TRI COUNTY FOAM INSULATION See ad on page 39


“SIPs become the envelope that wraps around the entire structure, making for an incredibly efficient home that can produce 40-60 percent energy savings over the life of the home.”

Neal Mack

“Everything we do for each project is contained in one rig, and because it’s applied as a liquid, it fills all the nooks and crannies,” he says. “It does more than insulating a house. It completely air seals and strengthens it, too.” Although the option to choose between spray foam and fiberglass insulation sometimes comes down to price, Poepping says the benefits can outweigh the cost. “The homeowner should be involved in that decision, and it’s important to evaluate the one-time payment as a lifetime of savings, while helping to knock down your carbon footprint,” he adds. “Just be sure to choose a reputable company, one with experience and the right equipment.”

Enercept

photos provided by ENERCEPT SIPS

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Structural Insulated Panels

One alternative way to build a house is with Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs), which can provide efficiency and energy savings related to protecting the environment. “SIPs become the envelope that wraps around the entire structure, making for an incredibly efficient home that can produce 4060 percent energy savings over the life of the home,” says Neal Mack, senior regional sales manager for Enercept, located in Watertown, S.D., a leading manufacturer of energy-efficient SIPs since 1981. By eliminating the exterior framing lumber of the project and making it into panels, Mack says it’s “kind of like taking the design of a home and making large-scale puzzle pieces.” Lumber has risen in cost due to a combination of Covid and related supply chain issues, so the decreased amount of dimensional


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photos provided by HANDS DOWN FLOORING & TILE See ad on page 39

lumber needed is not only a “green” savings, but also a respectable cost savings. The speed of assembly for SIPs, which can shave 2-4 weeks off framing time for a project, can also save on temporary heating or cooling in a residence during construction, according to Mack. “As more aspects of a building project become systems, the shift to SIPs is increasing,” he says. “To me, besides the environmental and energy savings, using SIPs gives the structure a great deal more strength than a ‘stick frame’ home by having the sheeting on both sides.”

Materials

Another way to look at building green is how we use natural resources. “It’s more than thinking about how we use, or don’t use, specific energy within the home,” says Northway. “It’s also about considering the types of materials we’re using, where they’re sourced from, and whether they’re renewable.” One product that has been around for years, and is now making a comeback, is a flooring called Marmoleum. Made from natural raw materials, it’s a resilient product to consider when making sustainable choices for the interior of a home.

“It’s an all-natural, biodegradable product for any floor – it’s ‘green,’ non-toxic, antimicrobial, and perfectly safe... it’s composed of linseed oil, limestone, wood flour, pine tree resins, and jute.”

Shane Busby

Hands Down Flooring and Tile

“It’s an all-natural, biodegradable product for any floor – it’s ‘green,’ non-toxic, antimicrobial, and perfectly safe,” says Shane Busby, of Hands Down Flooring and Tile in Moorhead, Minn. “It was invented back in 1855, and it’s composed of linseed oil, limestone, wood flour, pine tree resins, and jute.”

photos left and bottom provided by FORBO.COM

It’s the kind of flooring, or linoleum, you might find in older farmhouses, but Busby says the manufacturer, Forbo Flooring Systems, has updated the look with more modern colors and designs. Hands Down Flooring’s showroom has at least 50 different styles to choose from.


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photo provided by TRI COUNTY FOAM INSULATION See ad on page 39

“Going green isn’t just about the color. Whether it’s about the use of natural gas, propane, trees, water, or the quality of the installations, it means being good stewards of the natural Made in sheets 150 feet long, this natural flooring is then cured on a high bar, and the curing process continues indefinitely. Installing Marmoleum is a bit more difficult than other flooring, because those natural materials can shrink and extend when being glued down. “As long as it’s installed correctly, the long-lasting property of this flooring makes it worth it,” says Busby. “People have gotten a lot more serious lately about protecting the environment, and they can feel a lot better knowing that they won’t have to make this flooring part of a landfill someday.”

photo provided by

resources that we’ve been given on this planet.”

Steve Northway

Construction Advocates

Going Green

Green means different things to different people – and to different builders. There are many other issues that should be investigated before designing and building an energy efficient and environmentally friendly home, including the quality and experience of the builder and the subcontractors.

REAL SOLAR

“Durability in every aspect of building a house is a huge part of any high performance building program, and it’s not enough to choose the right products – they also have to be installed correctly, or those projects can fail,” adds Northway. “Going green isn’t just about the color. Whether it’s about the use of natural gas, propane, trees, water, or the quality of the installations, it means being good stewards of the natural resources that we’ve been given on this planet.” ~L&H


F FLOORING

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T

here are so many types of flooring to choose from that electing the right one for your space can feel overwhelming. To narrow down your options, first articulate your aesthetic, lifestyle and budget. Then consider the type of room where flooring will be installed and if you’d like to handle the project yourself or go with the pros. Your aesthetic — or personal style — is probably one of the easier variables to define. Consider the colors and finishes you love. Browse through design magazines and check your Pinterest and Houzz boards to see which options pop up over and over again. If you’re remodeling, consider the elements that will remain in place and find flooring that will complement them. And don’t get hung up on material; what appears to be wood,

stone or ceramic tile in a photograph might actually be something else entirely. Then consider your lifestyle. Some floors are very low maintenance. Others require sealants, special cleaners, and taking great care to avoid spills and stains. Certain flooring options are more durable for households with kids and pets, while others are gentler on aging joints or soft toddler feet. The type of room may direct the type of flooring you choose, especially if it’s a high traffic or high moisture area like a kitchen or bathroom. But budget tends to drive most flooring discussions. You can cut your costs (or splurge on a higher cost floor) by installing your flooring yourself. Just be aware that some are more difficult to install than others.

Hardwood Hardwood floors are very long-lasting. Some historic homes boast original floors that are more than a century old. A huge variety of hardwood is available in many colors, from the palest birch and white oak to deep, dark cherry wood and mahogany. Wood flooring is available in three forms: strip, plank and parquet. Strip flooring segments top out at just over two inches wide, while plank flooring strips are much thicker. Parquet floors combine shapes (often geometric ones) into patterns. The maintenance for all types of wood floors is similar – just sweep, vacuum and clean with a damp mop. Too much water will warp wood, so a little goes a long way. Wood is durable, but it does scratch and wear down in high traffic areas. Scratches and gouges will need to be sanded out. And all wood floors will need to be refinished once or twice in their long lifetimes. Hardwood is one of the more expensive flooring options. You can find domestic hardwoods at $3 to $5 per square foot, while imported wood can cost more than $12 per square foot. Installing wood floors is a job best left to the professionals, which increases the cost. But hardwood floors are also one of the few flooring options that actually increase a home’s value during resale. They can also last a lifetime. So that may save you money in the end.

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Engineered Wood Engineered wood combines a thin surface layer of genuine wood on top of high-quality plywood. It’s very stable, durable and looks like hardwood because the top layer (the only one that people see) is hardwood. Engineered wood floors share the pros and cons of wood floors in that they’re durable but will eventually need refinishing. Most can be refinished at least once, although the top layer might not be thick enough to refinish a second time. Because of this, most engineered wood floors last around 30 years. But because there’s less hardwood in the overall product, engineered wood floors are slightly more affordable than hardwood floors. Most are priced at between $2 and $5 per square foot, with some priced as high as $8 or $9 per square foot. Most homeowners outsource installation too, since it’s a tricky process for most DIYers to handle.

photos (TOP, LEFT & RIGHT) provided by Arnquist CarpetsPlus COLORTILE See ad on page 47

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Laminate Laminate flooring can also replicate the look of hardwood for less. It’s a layered product that’s made of a fiberboard base, a photographic image in the middle and a transparent wear layer on top to protect the image. That photographic layer can be made to look like anything, including wood, stone and ceramic tile. It also allows for many color, pattern and texture combinations. This flooring option is durable and much harder to scratch than hardwood or engineered wood. (That’s good news, since you can’t sand scratches out of laminate – you’d just buff away the image.) Most laminate lasts about 20 years. For the reasons listed above, it can’t be refinished. But at $1 to $5 per square foot, it’s also very affordable.

Installation is easy too. The planks lock into place and are installed over the subfloor, without any glues or adhesives. Floating floors like these are among the easiest DIY projects for homeowners to try. Like wood and engineered wood, laminate floors are easy to care for but they don’t do well when very wet. Use only a damp mop to keep moisture to a minimum.

Sheet Vinyl Vinyl is an easygoing floor covering. It’s durable and simple to care for. It’s soft and yielding on your feet. It’s available in a huge variety of colors and patterns and in three different forms: sheet vinyl, tiles and planks. Sheet vinyl is among the most affordable of the three. It can cost as little as $1 per square foot. But since sheet vinyl comes in wide rolls of six to ten feet like carpeting, it’s unwieldy for homeowners to install themselves. If your room is larger than the roll’s dimensions, in-

stallers can expertly fuse the seams so no one will see them. Professional installation adds to your expenses. It’s also a great choice for wet or humid areas like bathrooms or basements. Since it’s virtually seamless, it protects the subfloor against everything except for standing puddles of water. And if it gets wet, just pop it off, dry it out and roll it out again. Sheet vinyl can also cover up a stained or uneven subfloor. You can even lay it right over existing sheet or tile vinyl floors.

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Tile Vinyl Also called vinyl composite tile, these individually cut tiles mimic the look, durability and affordability of sheet vinyl. But they’re much easier to cut and install, which makes them an ideal DIY project. Many of these tiles have peel and stick backs, so you don’t have to apply adhesives with a trowel or fuss with smelly glues. But they won’t adhere unless the floor is clean, flat and even, so opt for sheet vinyl if your floor isn’t perfectly smooth. Tile vinyl is just as easy to clean as sheet vinyl. But since water can seep in through the seams, use only a damp mop and add a waterproof bathmat in areas likely to get very wet. Vinyl composite tile costs start at just under $2 per square foot. High quality, luxury tiles can cost as much as $5 per square foot.

Plank Vinyl More rigid than other vinyl options, these planks interlock to create a floating floor. They’re also called luxury vinyl planks or luxury vinyl flooring. As these names suggest, they’re more expensive than other vinyl products. But they’re still quite budget friendly, with most options falling between $2 and $5 per square foot. They’re more expensive largely because improved graphics can replicate the look of stone, wood, ceramic tile and even metal for much less. There are a variety of colors, textures and patterns available. Unlike some cheaper vinyl options, these are much less likely to fade in direct sunlight. This allows plank vinyl to be used in sunny spaces in the home without fear of damage.

Like all vinyl products, they’re still a great choice for any humid space or a room that might take on water. They’ll also absorb moisture at the seams so use a damp mop only. Plank vinyl is easy to install yourself. Since it’s a floating floor (one that isn’t attached to the subfloor) it can be installed over any flat surface – concrete, wood, even another vinyl floor.

Cork Made from the thinly sliced bark of cork trees, this is one of the most sustainable and environmentally friendly options on the market. Most cork flooring is salvaged from cork remnants, pressed into sheets and bonded with resin. Cork is most commonly available in tiles or planks that highlight the unique look of natural cork. But as the material has become more popular, a greater variety of grains are available.

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Cork can fade in sunlight and will mold if it gets wet (or even damp), but other than that, it’s quite simple to care for. Once installed, a sealant is applied to prevent water damage. Then homeowners just need to sweep or vacuum to keep the surface clean. Because cork is quite thick, it’s a very good insulator. It feels soft, warm and cushiony underfoot. But this softness also means that cork shows divots from heavy furniture and appliances. Even pets’ claws and high heels can damage it. If cork is damaged, they can be refinished. Cork floors are very easy to install and maintain. Many homeowners can do it themselves. The price of cork ranges widely. It can be as affordable as $3 per square foot to as high as the price of hardwood. Most cork flooring options hover around the $6-$8 per square foot range.


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Carpet Carpet is plush, soft and warm, making it a comfortable option for chilly climates and rooms where you’ll be padding around in bare feet. It’s gentle on pets, kids and anyone who could use a little extra cushion. And the extra thickness creates a sound barrier. This is a very affordable flooring option at $2 to $7 per square foot. But most homeowners have their carpets professionally installed, which adds to the cost. Carpet traps dirt, dust and dander, so it’s a poor choice for those with allergies. It also requires a significant amount of maintenance, including regular vacuuming and occasional deep cleaning. Most modern carpet is synthetic and lasts up to 15 years or longer if it’s well-cared for.

photo provided by Arnquist CarpetsPlus COLORTILE See ad on page 47

Ceramic or porcelain tile

Bamboo Bamboo shares many of the benefits and drawbacks of hardwood. But because the bamboo plant is a fast-growing, renewable resource, it’s much more environmentally friendly. This product is slightly more water resistant than hardwood, but humidity, mold and water damage are still dangers. Bamboo can scratch, but it’s tougher than most woods as well. Most bamboo floors can be refinished.

There are horizontal and vertical grains available. Most natural bamboo has a light blond or amber color. But you can choose carbonized bamboo in a variety of shades. Just note that carbonized bamboo scratches more easily. Bamboo floors are quite affordable — $2-$6 per square foot for materials. But you’ll likely need to add installation to your total cost. Most bamboo floors require nails and glue (and professional installation), although DIYers can handle some interlocking floating floor options. Like hardwood, bamboo can add value to a home at resale. So the costs might be worth it.

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This is one of the toughest and most durable flooring options on the market. Both ceramic and porcelain tiles are made by firing clay in a kiln. The main difference is that porcelain is harder, denser and less porous. Porcelain is also usually more expensive, but still surprisingly affordable. You can find attractive, high quality tile in a plethora of colors, shapes and patterns for less than $5 per square foot. But installation is labor intensive and complex. Homeowners must make sure the floor can support the tile’s weight. (Tile can be too heavy for upper stories.) Then they must prep the subfloor, glue tiles, apply adhesive, keep everything straight and even and fill the space between tiles with grout. Most opt to pay for professional installation instead.


Unlike vintage linoleum (which may contain asbestos), modern linoleum is very green. It’s biodegradable and made from natural and renewable materials like linseed oil. It also includes cork powder, which gives it that soft feeling underfoot. Like cork, linoleum doesn’t do well in wet areas. Because it’s soft and springy, it can be scuffed or dented by sharp objects, appliances and furniture. Modern manufacturing deposits color and pattern deep into the material, which can help camouflage damage.

Linoleum will eventually show wear patterns in high traffic areas, much like hardwood. Unlike wood floors, linoleum can’t be refinished.

Natural stone The most common stone flooring options include travertine, slate, marble, granite and engineered stone. The one thing these materials have in common is that they’re extremely hard, durable and heavy. A professional will have to survey the room to make sure that the joists and the subfloor will accommodate the weight of the flooring you select.

The investment is worth it. A properly installed ceramic tile floor can last more than 75 years. Ceramic and porcelain tile are easy to care for and resist water, so they work well for high-traffic areas like kitchens, hallways and foyers as well as humid bathrooms. Tile is hard and cold, so it’s rarely used in bedrooms and living areas in northern climates. It’s almost impossible for dust particles and allergens to become trapped on the hard, slick surface, so this is also a good choice for those with pets or allergies.

Linoleum Linoleum is incredibly durable. Make sure to choose a pattern or color you like, since many companies offer 25-year warranties – and the lifespan of linoleum can stretch for decades. You can purchase linoleum in several different forms, including glue-down tiles, click-together planks, and large sheets. Tile and planks are good for DIY projects, but sheet linoleum is thicker and harder to handle, so most homeowners hire someone to install it.

photos RIGHT: Chicago Brick Porcelain Tile TOP: Karndean Opus Luxury Vinyl Tile provided by Center of Design See ad on page 19

The cost to install linoleum is comparable to vinyl flooring, averaging $4-$8 per square foot. Most options fall somewhere in the middle of that range.

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Some materials, like granite and slate, require a completely level subfloor. Otherwise, they’re vulnerable to cracks. Stone is porous, so preventing and removing stains is vital. It’s difficult to replace stone once it cracks, chips or stains, so prevention is key. Stone costs more than any other flooring material, so you’ll want to protect your investment. If you take good care of your stone floors, they can last an incredibly long time. The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) estimates that a marble or granite floor can last over a hundred years.

Concrete Concrete floors are also a very tough and durable option. They’re easy to care for — just clean as needed and reseal occasionally — and almost impossible to dent. Thanks to concrete’s rising popularity, you can choose from a variety of colors, textures and finishes.

But concrete is more affordable than you’d think. Depending on the elements you choose, rates can vary from $2 to $30 per square foot, including installation. Concrete is tough, but it’s not indestructible. Every home expands and contracts with the seasons, so even expertly installed concrete can crack. This material can soak up moisture from damp soil, leaky gutters or windows, which can aggravate the problem. Repair kits can help mask the damage.

Epoxy coated flooring Epoxy flooring, also known as resinous flooring, is almost impossible to destroy. Frequently used on garage floors, so it’s designed to stand up to gas, oil, bleach and other corrosive materials. These floors are non-porous, water and germ-resistant and sanitize easily, which makes them popular in laundry rooms, workshops and studios, as well as in the homes of people with allergies.

Like stone and ceramic tile, concrete is very heavy. Consult a structural engineer to make sure your home can handle the weight. This flooring option can be quite cold and hard underfoot, which is why many homeowners opt for rugs or install heated concrete floors for an extra layer of coziness. Heated or not, installing these floors is a job for the professionals. photos provided by K&M Coatings See ad on page 51

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The super smooth, very shiny surface of these floors is another draw. Homeowners can choose or customize a huge variety of colors, finishes and patterns to make this style their own. They can also mimic the look of natural stone for much less – about $3 to $12 per square foot. That price includes labor, since expert installation ensures greater quality. While there are DIY kits available, they tend to contain more water. A professional can apply more concentrated products and prep the concrete so it bonds with the epoxy better. Chipping, peeling, flaking and wearing are a risk as epoxy floors age. But inferior products or uneven application can make these problems pop up much sooner. A professionally installed epoxy floor can shine on for decades without a touch-up. There are lots of flooring choices to choose from. Considering your budget, lifestyle, the purpose of the room and other key factors can help you choose the best and most beautiful option for your home. ~L&H


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photo and recipe by Alicia Underlee Nelson

A frittata is an easy way to use up the odds

Butter for greasing the pan

and ends in your fridge and add more col-

12 | eggs

orful veggies to your diet with very little effort.

3 tablespoons | full fat dairy

Frittatas are versatile, so if you’re short on any ingredients, you can substitute your favorite veggie, meat or cheese combination.

choose from sour cream, whole milk, crème fraîche, half-and-half, heavy cream or yogurt

½ teaspoon | salt ½ teaspoon | pepper

This version showcases the season’s very

1 cup | grated or crumbled cheddar cheese

first scallions and readily available spinach

1 ½ cups | cooked ham

beautifully. (It’s also an easy way to use up uneaten Easter ham.) Use the leftovers as protein-packed filling for breakfast sandwiches or wraps.

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cut into ½-inch cubes

1 teaspoon | olive oil ½ cup |scallions (or green onions) thinly sliced 3 cups | fresh spinach, torn into pieces


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Add olive oil to a skillet and place over medium

Grease a 9 x 13 pan with butter. Set aside.

heat. Add scallions to the pan, coating them

with oil, then add spinach. Cook until the spinach

Clean and dry spinach.

is wilted, about 1-2 minutes.

Whisk eggs together in a mixing bowl until yolks

Add vegetables to the egg and ham mixture. Stir

and whites are blended. Add dairy, salt, pepper

to mix well. Pour into the buttered pan.

and cheese. •

Bake at 350 degrees for 23-25 minutes. It’s done

Dice pre-cooked ham into ½ inch cubes.

when the eggs are set and the edges are brown,

Add to egg mixture, then set it aside.

but the center has a little jiggle.

(The eggs will keep cooking as they cool.)

Remove the frittata from the oven to cool.

Top with additional cheese or fresh herbs, if desired. ~L&H

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photo and recipe by Alicia Underlee Nelson

I was looking for a way to use up a cup of Greek yogurt when I stumbled upon the wonder that is the Italian yogurt cake. It’s a breeze

3 | large eggs at room temperature 1 cup | plain Greek yogurt at room temperature

to prepare, but it creates a rich, dense cake

½ cup | olive oil (vegetable oil works too)

that looks impressive with very little effort.

¾ cup | sugar

It’s excellent plain or topped with a sprinkling

1 ½ cups | all-purpose flour

of powdered sugar. Italians often toss a little

1 ½ teaspoons | baking powder

lemon zest into the batter and enjoy this stur-

2 cups | whipped cream or whipped topping

dy, not-too-sweet cake for breakfast.

This recipe is adapted from one created by Rosemary Molly for AnItalianInMyKitchen. com. I like to add whipped crème and fruit to make these chilly spring days feel a little bit more summery. If nothing is in season, frozen fruit is perfectly fine – just make sure you drain off the liquid first.

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2 cups | berries (fresh or frozen)


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Cool on a wire rack for at least an hour.

Grease a round 8-inch or 9-inch cake pan.

If you’re using the whole cake, top with whipped

cream and fruit, cut into wedges and serve

Whisk the eggs together in a mixing bowl until

well blended. Add yogurt, oil and sugar.

Mix for 1 minute or until smooth.

immediately. •

If not, cut first and add toppings to the portions

you’re serving only. Plain cake can be frozen,

Add flour and baking powder.

chilled in the refrigerator or kept at room

Beat another 1-2 minutes until well combined.

temperature for 2-3 days. ~L&H

Pour into the greased pan. Bake for 40 minutes,

or until the center is set and a toothpick inserted

in the middle comes out clean.

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C

CABIN UPKEEP

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H

omeowners generally look forward to having guests over for dinner or opening their home to guests for the weekend. But once in a while, an uninvited guest shows up.

The pest helps himself to the food in the pantry, gets in the bed, and leaves behind a mess. That uninvited guest sees how nice things are, and before homeowners know it, he’s moving in, building a nest or a web, and pretty soon, there are issues. “No one is free from pests. Whether they’re living in a brand new house or a hundred-year-old house, anyone may experience a pest problem. Whatever the pest may be, from something as simple as ants or as unpleasant as bedbugs, we are able to handle it,” Nick Stokke, owner of Prairie Pest Control, explained. From residential to commercial, from Fargo to Detroit Lakes, Prairie Pest Control (www.prairiepestcontrol.net) has been evicting uninvited pests for 10 years.

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Nathan Danielson, owner of Alliance Pest Control (https://alliancepp.com/) based in Audubon, Minn., knows exactly what type of uninvited guests we’re talking about. “Common pests in the lakes area are spiders, ants, Asian beetles, wasps, flies, and rodents. We also treat centipedes, salvia bugs, pretty much any kind of creepy crawler,” Danielson commented. As Minnesota starts to thaw out, homeowners will see creepy, crawly pests begin to invade their home. “A pest can crawl in just about anywhere. There are many openings in houses like attic vents because houses need to breathe. Just about any bug can get in through those vents,” Rod Bolstad, owner of Midwest Pest Control, said. Midwest Pest Control (www.midwestpestcontrolinc.com) has been in the business of evicting uninvited guests since 1998. The family-owned business employs 18 technicians, covering Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota.

“A pest can crawl in just about anywhere. There are many openings in houses like attic vents because houses need to breathe. Just about any bug can get in through those vents.” Rod Bolstad Midwest Pest Control


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Another pest that likes to show up unannounced is the four-legged, furry rodent. Sure, they look cute, all dressed up in red shorts and yellow shoes, singing and dancing in cartoons, but the second a mouse scurries across your kitchen floor, their cuteness goes out the door. “Mice are sneaky. They can get in through the smallest of places. They can elongate their bodies into a hole small enough to roll a pencil under. If their skull fits, it can get through,” Bolstad mentioned. Since these pests are uninvited guests, they don’t generally announce themselves. “Mice think of humans as predators, so they’ll hide from us as best as they can. Their nests are rarely in a visual area,” Bolstad said. They’re likely to surprise you, or maybe you’ll hear their little claws across the floor. “Common signs that you have a pest issue are webbing, mice droppings, chewed-up toilet paper, or food packages. It varies with every pest,” Stokke explained. Warmth and food are two common things that attract pests. We know the trail of ants is likely leading to crumbs under the table or a sticky mess left behind by spilled juice, but that’s not all that attracts ants into the home. “Ants like chewing on damp, rotting wood, which speeds up the rotting process. If you have ants, it might be a sign that you have a

“Ants like chewing on damp, rotting wood, which speeds up the rotting process. If you have ants, it might be a sign that you have a moisture problem, which is something you’re going to want to take care of right away.” Nathan Danielson | Alliance Pest Control


moisture problem, which is something you’re going to want to take care of right away,” Danielson added. Not only do these pests show up uninvited, but they also leave behind a mess and even structural damage. One thing about living in Minnesota, where winter lasts three seasons, is that homeowners don’t have to worry about termites. Termites are uncommon or rare in Minnesota—even they don’t like the cold. “Mice can chew up wiring, small holes through wood, and on clothing and towels. It is things like that that mice will use to make a nest,” Bolstad said. When it comes to mice, they’re mostly unsanitary. “Rodent droppings can make you sick, and since mice don’t have a bladder, they can leave up to 800 drops of urine a day that contaminates a lot of surface in the home that people don’t see. Pests like cockroaches will climb down into drains, and then come back up on counters and spread bacteria on food prep areas,” Danielson stated. He went on to say, “Bedbugs don’t carry diseases, but they like to come out at night and bite. A bedbug bite tends to itch like a mosquito bite, and a person could get an infection from scratching at it.” These unwanted guests, who showed up out of nowhere, aren’t likely to leave on their own. You may need a pest control company to come in and show them the door. “Pests tend to go in cycles. Someone might tell me they haven’t had a mouse in 19 years, and with no explanation, a mouse will show up. One thing about mice is they’ll live outside easily, but they don’t like wet areas, and they’ll go in search of a dry area,” Bolstad mentioned. Depending on what pest the pest control companies are after will determine how they handle the situation. “When it comes to rodents, we’ll do a thorough search of places a mouse can get in. We’ll seal those places up with a caulking solution that has steel wool bits in it. This solution works very well. If we need to take it a step further, we’ll set traps around the exterior of the home to prevent a new infestation,” Bolstad stated. He went on to say, “The traps are weighted down and designed so that a young child can’t open them to grab the bait. The trap is set on steel poles, so you can’t shake the bait out of it either. We use rodenticide in the trap, which causes the mouse to bleed internally and dry up, so it won’t smell. When a mouse gets sick, they want to stay away from their predators, so that you won’t find them.”

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When it comes to the interior, “The vacuum is the best tool for the job! We use a vacuum to get rid of bedbugs, cockroaches, etc.,” Danielson mentioned. When it comes to spraying for pests, pest control companies have the equipment to spray the house from top to bottom. Your average size house can take up to 15 minutes for the liquid chemical to dry. The more square footage, the longer it will take. However, once the liquid chemical is dry, homeowners can enter the house. “Everything we use is very safe and by the label. We would never put any homeowners or their pets in harm’s way,” Stokke stated. Are you afraid of spiders? You’re not alone—nearly one-third of Americans struggle with arachnophobia. “I know people don’t like them because they make their home dirty. The webbing tends to catch dust,” Bolstad commented. “When we treat for spiders, we treat the entire home from top to bottom with insecticide. That insecticide lasts for 90 days, so customers will try and spray their homes twice a year, either in April and July or May and August, and that will cover them for the summer months from crawling insects in the home.

“Your average size house can take up to 15 minutes for the liquid chemical to dry. The more square footage, the longer it will take. However, once the liquid chemical is dry, homeowners can enter the house.” Nick Stokke | Prairie Pest Control

There are a few things homeowners can do to prevent future unwanted guests. “Homeowners should keep debris, dead leaves, and wood piles away from their house. In the interior of the home, it helps to keep things clean, have a good source of airflow, and putting a dehumidifier in the basement will help as a damp basement will create a lot of insects,” Danielson explained. They don’t call these unwanted guests pests for nothing, and if you’re a homeowner dealing with a pest or pests, it might be time to invite a pest control company over. “Be watchful. If homeowners may think there’s a problem, give us a call, and we’ll go over some questions to see if it is a situation that they need pest control or not,” Stokke concluded. ~L&H

photos provided by Prairie Pest Control

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D

DO IT YOURSELF

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In times of stress, worry and change, it helps to cultivate feelings of calm, safety and order. We can create spaces that promote inner peace and help us relax and unwind in the privacy of our own homes.

Yoga or Meditation Studio Find a comfortable, quiet space. While guest bedrooms, sun porches, parlors and attics are popular for in-home retreats, you don’t need an entire room, so claim a corner of your office or library or even a large landing. If you’re practicing yoga, you just need enough room to stretch out your limbs both vertically and horizontally. For meditation, you just need space to sit down.

The goal is to minimize visual distractions, so unlike most DIY projects, this one calls for removing more items than you create or install. Re-gift, recycle, repurpose or discard as much as possible. Find a new home for everything else in the room or tuck it out of sight.

You’ll be spending most of your time on the floor, so sweep or vacuum. Rubber flooring panels, a yoga mat, an area rug or blankets can make a hard floor more comfortable. Place any yoga props you need nearby, ideally in an attractive basket or box so they can be hidden when not in use.

Soothing rituals can help our minds turn inward, so consider adding sensory elements to enhance your practice. A scented candle or diffuser with essential oils can help calm you. Soothing nature sounds, small desktop fountain, a fan or a white noise machine can mask household sounds and street noise if you’re easily distracted.

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Library Find a secluded spot to claim as your own. Try repurposing the corner of an office or spot in a hallway or on a landing. Spaces like at-

the amount of space available (and your

hedges or install a decorative screen or trellis

tics, window seats and closets tucked under

need for spinal support) you could try floor

draped with trailing plants to shield you from

the stairs can make inviting libraries with a lit-

cushions, a bean bag, papasan chair or

view. If you’re working with a smaller indoor

tle effort. Just make sure your space is clean,

even an oversized ottoman.

space, select gauzy curtains or blinds that allow soft light to enter the room or hang trailing

dry and has good light. Add an additional lamp if needed. Consider

plants to provide privacy and greenery.

Now consider the number and type of books

a small table with coasters so you can enjoy

to display. Much-loved paperbacks will look

a warm or cold drink while you read. A foot

Green is the key word. Meditation gardens

best grouped on a shelf, while a collection

stool or ottoman, warm blanket or soft pillows

are present in many cultures, but they have

of colorful coffee table books begs to be dis-

can take the experience to the next level.

a few things in common. They tend to focus

played on a flat surface. You can also tuck books away in a storage ottoman or trunk if

Prayer or Meditation Garden

you’re short on shelf space.

A meditation garden can create a calming

on greenery and texture instead of color. Choose low maintenance plants so you can relax, not focus on gardening tasks.

corner for rest and contemplation. You can Now carve out a spot to sit and read. A chair

reimagine a secluded part of your yard or

The soothing sound of water is also usually

or couch would be great. But depending on

repurpose a porch, sunroom or even a tiny

present. Those with space and a landscap-

balcony.

ing budget can opt for a stream or a small pond. But a simple electric birdbath or foun-

It’s important to minimize distractions and

tain can make even a tiny balcony seem

preserve your privacy, so look for ways to add

more welcoming.

a visual barrier. In the yard, you can plant Most meditation gardens include a path to walk and a place to sit and think. Choose cushions, chairs or benches – whatever works for you and your space. ~L&H

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I

INTERIOR DESIGN

68 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021


See more from this home on page 120

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1

Lights Lamps are the perfect décor for any end table, side table or sofa table. Center them in the middle of the table or off to the side, just be sure to take size into consideration. Too small of a lamp can disappear among the other décor and too large of a lamp can overshadow every-

2

thing around it. Proportion is key when picking the perfect lamp.

D

ecorating your home does not have to be difficult. With a few key pieces, some accent accessories and a plan, you can make every space in your

home look fresh and well designed. Styling vignettes is about placing items together that complement each other, add interest and attract the eye.

Most people do not even realize how many areas in their home are the perfect spot to showcase favorite possessions.

Color

Every shelf, table, dresser and flat surface is another opportunity to create a beautiful vignette.

Vignettes come in many shapes, sizes, colors and themes. Use your creativity to create beautiful spaces in your home that you and your family will enjoy. In case you need some

The colors in the objects in your

help, here are some great tips on styling the perfect vignette

vignettes should tie into the other

followed by a vignette styling example to follow if you like.

colors in the room. You can either go with objects of a few different colors or stick with a monochromatic vignette. Some of the most beautifully designed vignettes are made up of objects of all one color.

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3

Different Heights

Be sure to vary the heights of your items and feel free to stack items if necessary. If everything is of the same height it appears a little too contrived.

4. Odd numbers

Group objects in odd numbers such as three or five to add interest. The key is for the vignette to look gorgeous but not too perfect.

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themes such as candles, vases or photos. A vignette of your favorite

Photo provided by Sara Godfrey

Group items into

5

Themes

Depth

collection of items attracts interest.

Create depth by staggering items a bit so they are grouped

6

on a table or shelf, not Photo provided by Sara Godfrey

placed in a line. Be sure not to include too many items as to avoid a cluttered look.

As you have probably realized, I have told you to group similar items together and then I turned around and told you to group varying items. Both will look great, just be creative.

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Texture

7

Group items of various textures together such as a piece of driftwood, a rock and a book. Or place items that are of opposing textures together such as shiny and dull, soft and hard, or rough and smooth.

Be Creative

8

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Tell a Story Group items together that tell a story. Maybe you have a leatherbound journal, an antique pair of binoculars and a beautiful ceramic bird. The vignette tells the story that you enjoy watching birds. Your home, as well your vignettes, should be a reflection

9

Photo provided by Sara Godfrey

of you and your family.

Here is an example of how to create a vignette on a console table, sofa table or entry table that is up against a wall.

What you will need depending on the size of your table:

10

1. Tall vase with fresh flowers or tall plants 2. Large decorative accessory 3. Unique mirror or piece of art 4. Stack of books 5. Scent diffuser 6. Candle

Practice

Place the unique mirror or piece of art on the center of the table leaned up against the wall. This is your focal point. The tall vase or plant will go to one end of the table and the large decorative accessory will go on the other end. The stack of books topped with the candle will be placed just

Grab some of your favorite items and practice

off to one side of the focal point and the scent diffuser will

rearranging them until you love what you see.

be placed off to the other side. ~L&H

74 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021


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Finding the right contractor for building

WHERE DID YOUR PASSION FOR BUILDING AND

your dream home or lake cabin can often

CONSTRUCTION COME FROM?

feel like an overwhelming process. It’s im-

My dad was a carpenter, his uncle was a carpenter, and I seemed

perative to ensure the contractor has the

to be destined to follow in their footsteps. These two men not only

appropriate skills to complete your vision,

inspired my love of carpentry, but they were my mentors in learn-

as well as having a team you can trust.

ing and growing my skills in this field. They taught me the basics

Building a cooperative relationship with

of framing, drywall, and installing concrete. They were the original

both is vital to making the right hiring deci-

“Jack of all trades!”

sion. Dan Johnson Construction of Fergus Falls is a standout in the field of local construction companies that fills both of these requirements.  

Dan Johnson Construction is not only a local company with deep roots in the region, but is a builder that seeks to find unique solutions to make every client’s dream home a reality. Recently, Dan shared with Lake & Home the background of his company, as well as his desire to be a builder whose fundamental company goals are integrity and innovation.

Written by Andrea Canning


Throughout high school and college, I worked in the fields of plumb-

IS THERE ONE AREA OF A DAN JOHNSON

ing, heating, excavation and of course carpentry. By 2003, I was

CONSTRUCTION PROJECT THAT IS YOUR PERSONAL

working as a subcontractor and over time, grew the business into

FAVORITE?

what it is today, Dan Johnson Construction.

I deeply enjoy each and every custom home build. Being a part of a client’s vision for their dream home and working hard to make it come

WHO COMPRISES THE TEAM OF

to fruition is truly rewarding. Working alongside companies as we help

DAN JOHNSON CONSTRUCTION?

them grow their business with new buildings is a thrill for our team.

We have an amazing team. Each member brings a unique and talented approach to construction and our builds are outstanding because of them. Our crew of 10 consists of apprentices and master carpenters, whose years of individual experience range from five to well over 35 years.

HOW DO YOU MAKE THE BUILDING PROCESS EASIER FOR YOUR CLIENTS? Having clear and consistent communication with our clients makes all the difference when it comes down to having a positive working relationship. We work alongside our clients by being helpful in the decision-making process. By creating a team-like mentality with subcontractors, we can navigate decisions as one cohesive unit.  

MARCH / APRIL 2021 www.lakeandhomemagazine.com 77


We are a creative, innovative, and talented team. Our goal is to work together to make your design visions a reality. The team members of Dan Johnson Construction work hard to accomplish every need for your project with integrity and innovation.

WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO BEGIN A CONSTRUCTION PROJECT WITH YOUR COMPANY? You can get in contact with us by phone or email and set

WHAT IS THE MOST GRATIFYING PART OF BUILDING

up a time to discuss your ideas. When we meet, bring your

CUSTOM HOMES FOR YOUR CLIENTS?

ideas, vision boards or plans. Our experienced architects

Personally, the moments when we can solve challenges brought

can also help with the development of plans if you are start-

about by the uniqueness of a project is deeply gratifying. We work

ing with only a desire to build your ultimate dream home or

together as a cohesive team, planning and strategizing with clients to

custom lake cabin. ~L&H

find creative solutions to the home design instead of taking a cookie cutter approach.

IS THERE ONE FEATURE IN A DAN JOHNSON CONSTRUCTION CUSTOM HOME BUILD THAT STANDS OUT TO YOU? I would have to say the Hicks home from 2010. It stands out because of the beautiful barrel roofs with intricate curved exposed beams. The home also had concrete ICF (insulated concrete form) walls all the way to the ceiling, along with the installation of geothermal heat. This was a very energy efficient home as well as being beautiful.

218-731-5626

OFFICE@DJCMN.COM


F

FEATURE HOME


MARCH / APRIL 2021 www.lakeandhomemagazine.com 81


T

he crystal clear water and towering trees were the draw from the very start. It was the Northwoods majesty of Thunder Lake, not the cabin itself, that caught Ted and Andie Truitt’s attention more than 15 years ago. “The land was more important to us than the structure,” says Ted Truitt. “We have fond childhood memories of the lakes in Wisconsin. When we moved to Minnesota, we wanted to form the same kind of memories for our children and their friends. The large, clear lake with many large pine trees and natural shoreline made the location right for us. Also, we are not interested in altering the beautiful and natural landscape. We instead try to blend in with our natural surroundings.”   The couple and their children made many memories in that first cabin, stretching out every second of those long summer days in the great outdoors. So many friends and

family members visited that the Truitt family wondered if they’d outgrown that old cabin. They were soon forced to make a decision. “When our small cabin flooded from a broken pipe, we didn’t think to move, but we started to think about knocking it down and rebuilding,” Ted explains. “We saw several Lands End Development houses and knew we liked their style and quality. They seemed to listen to our needs and adapt. They also took the time to preserve some of the flow and considerations from our old cabin.” The collaboration with the Crosslake builders was a fruitful partnership. Now the second Truitt home stands proudly among the trees in a secluded spot near Remer, just north of Outing and east of Longville. Its design is a skillful blend of elements they loved from the old cabin and the features they wanted from a new build.

“The land was more important to us than the structure. We have fond childhood memories of the lakes in Wisconsin. When we moved to Minnesota, we wanted to form the same kind of memories for our children and their friends. The large, clear lake with many large pine trees and natural shoreline made the location right for us.” Ted Truitt || Homeowner

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Every structure on the property stands out while blending in. That’s precisely the point. “It is hard to even see our house or beach house from the lake,” says Andie. “We feel that blending in with nature is standing out in its own way.” That beach house is one of the property’s most unique features. It grew out of a need to preserve the natural beauty of the landscape and offers the effortless gathering spaces and outdoor access the Truitt family wanted to provide. “The old cabin was about 250 feet away from the lake. The lot would allow us to move much closer, but then we would need to take down some large pines and we’d lose the ‘treehouse’ feel and stunning views,” says Ted. “A compromise was to nestle in a beach house 75 feet from the water.” Tucked deep into the trees, this outdoor retreat maximizes the natural beauty of its surroundings. When you pull up a stool and take a seat at the bar, you can look right through the building to the lake beyond. Step into the galvanized steel shower and stare up at the treetops. An awning and screen provide shade and protection so you can settle into the comfortable seats and stay awhile.

“It is hard to even see our house or beach house from the lake. We feel that blending in with nature is standing out in its own way.” Andie Truitt || Homeowner

84 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021


“This is our favorite place to congregate in the summers,” says Andie. “There is no need to come up to the house during the day. We have a bathroom, outdoor shower, storage and plenty of room to eat, drink and visit.” Cedar shakes from Top Notch Exteriors in Trego, Wis., echo the exterior of the main house and mimic the bark of the trees that envelop the space. The beach house is usually bustling. But it blends right into the forest around it.

“This is our favorite place to congregate in the summers.

“The beach bar is surrounded by these amazing trees, and looks as though it’s been there for years,” says Paula Kovatovich, Lands End Development’s interior designer. “This place can handle a lot of people comfortably. It’s absolutely gorgeous and so peaceful.”

There is no need to come up to the house during the day. We have a bathroom, outdoor shower, storage and plenty of room to eat, drink and visit.”

Andie Truitt || Homeowner

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The Truitt family loves the outdoors. When they’re not in the beach house, you’ll find Ted and Andie out for a morning jog (no matter the season), or down by the water with their kids and their guests. Wakeboarding, swimming, fishing, paddleboarding and snorkeling are favorite pursuits. Of course, every active family needs a place to relax. The house on Thunder Lake offers several places to stretch out in the dappled sunshine, both inside and out.

Perhaps the most notable is the expansive second-story deck just off the dining room. It seems to hover above the forest floor, giving the entire space a magical treehouse feeling. Red lounge chairs echo the home’s distinct red windows, providing a pop of color against the warm cedar siding. There’s a seating area for outdoor chats and a table for dining al fresco.

Rustic stone columns descend from the deck to a flagstone patio below. The flagstones were laid by Reid Price of The Woods Landscaping, who also created the patio in the beach house. Cheerful red Adirondack chairs cluster around the fire pit, a popular gathering spot. “We have a campfire going pretty much throughout the entire afternoon and evening,” says Andie. “People love to sit by it to just chill, visit, or roast marshmallows.”

“We have a campfire going pretty much throughout the entire afternoon and evening. People love to sit by it to just chill, visit, or roast marshmallows.” Andie Truitt || Homeowner

The Truitt family wanted to preserve this feeling of being in nature, even when they were indoors. So the team at Lands End worked to preserve the intimate feeling of their original cabin, while also highlighting the forest and water views that first drew the family to this slice of shoreline in the first place. The emphasis on the outside world is evident the second you arrive. “When you drive up, you can see through the front doors right into the massive great room window that looks out to the treetops,”


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explains Kovatovich. “The kitchen and porch are off to the left and the den and master suite are off to the right. The mudroom/laundry room connects the house to the garage. The upper level has two suites, one on each end of the house with a loft area between.” The home is spacious (6,043 square feet, plus 1,058 in the garage), but it doesn’t sprawl. Instead, this layout separates the five bedrooms, six-and-a-half bathrooms and a bunk room into zones. Some are for guests, others for the immediate family. “When just the two of us come up, we have everything we need on the main floor and that makes the house seem smaller, almost like our old cabin,” says Ted. ”It gives it a cozy and manageable feeling.” As the number of guests swells, they expand into the suites on either end of the home. With a king bed and bathroom of their own, the suites give visitors plenty of space and autonomy.

The bunkhouse can sleep a crowd. It offers freedom and fun for the youngest guests and a little peace for the older generations. “The bunkhouse is still attached to the house, but it is set aside from the rest,” Ted explains. “When large groups of kids or families come, they have their own space. The music is often blaring and games are being played in that space that can’t be heard by the rest of the house.”

“When you drive up, you can see through the front doors right into the massive great room window that looks out to the treetops. The kitchen and porch are off to the

Even though the Truitt home is often full of people, there are quiet spaces tucked into the floor plan. They encourage family members and guests to relax, unwind and connect.

left and the den and

The aforementioned great room windows draw the eye to the outdoors like a magnet. A stone fireplace by Don’s Masonry in Brainerd invites you to curl up on the sofa and stay awhile.

Paula Kovatovich || Interior Designer

88 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021

master suite are off to the right.” Lands End Development


The oversized square kitchen island gleams. It’s the perfect spot to savor a slow breakfast as sunlight pours in the windows or to settle in for a long chat as the distinctive pendant lights glow. The south-facing sunporch also shares the same western view as the dining room and second story deck. This is the place to bask in the morning sunshine, warm up after snowshoeing or cross-country skiing or relax with a book or a puzzle. These are just a few of the Truitt family’s hobbies. They designed their new home to accommodate all of them. “Some of our favorite things to do are read, listen to music, drink wine, play guitar, visit with people and exercise,” Andie says. “We kept all of these things in mind when designing.” This home isn’t a showroom. That’s obvious from the minute you step into the entryway and see the black and white family photos on the wall. Instead, it’s a loving tribute to

family, memories and treasured pastimes. Slide open the rustic barn doors and walk into the den, where favorite books, an old-fashioned library ladder and two guitars hold pride of place. The surprises continue downstairs.

“Some of our favorite

“The lower level has a bar, pool table and wine room for entertaining and allows easy access down to the amazing beach bar on the water,” Kovatovich explains.

people and exercise. We

The boys love to play pool and watch sports on the comfortable couches. Soft, fluffy blankets drape over the leather sofas. There are extras stashed for those cool Northwoods nights and another gorgeous stone fireplace that warms up the room.

90 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021

things to do are read, listen to music, drink wine, play guitar, visit with

kept all of these things in mind when designing.” Andie Truitt || Homeowner


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There are many unique touches in this home. But one project was especially meaningful. “The wine cellar was my favorite,” Ted admits. “We love our wine and storage in our primary home isn’t ideal for display or climate. Having the chance to build gave us the opportunity to display our wines and have a controlled environment for them.” The wine cellar’s gracious, old world elements like earthy tile and rustic stone add tactile elements to the space and inject a sense of history into the home. An emphasis on soothing neutral colors and plenty of reclaimed wood from Big Wood Timber Frames in Brainerd and Red Pine Log Works and Remodeling in Backus unite the interior spaces. The family-centered heart of the home is almost entirely wood. The rooms the Truitt family use the most (the kitchen, great room, den and sun porch) have wood walls, wood

floors from Sharp-Edge Wood Floors in Pierz — even wood ceilings. Gracious window seats in wood-lined alcoves are deep enough for napping. The master bedroom continues this rich, allwood theme. While the guest rooms embrace calm, neutral colors that blend into the background and let the wood shine, the master bedroom opts for earthy colors and richly textured textiles. A classic Pendleton blanket in a strong stripe contrasts with a bold patterned rug. Both are anchored by a red coverlet. The little touches of texture and artful additions of red appear throughout the home. The patterned backs of the proud dining room chairs echo the shades in the intricate rug underfoot. Classic red and black buffalo plaid in the sunroom adds interest and makes the room feel comfortable and accessible. 92 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021

Fuzzy pillows and throws, eye-catching patterned rugs, the pebbly texture of a glass lamp glowing in the loft and buttery leather furniture are expertly layered to complement the home’s rustic wood and stone without overpowering them. “Kaylin Stawarski from Great Furniture Gallery deserves so much credit for the layouts, colors and furniture,” says Ted. “Nearly all of the furniture was purchased through them. She gave us so many unique options and took the time to learn our style. She and Paula from Lands End were very patient with us and gave us lots of fun and unique ideas.”


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And no matter where you stand in the Truitt house, you’ll be able to see the outside world. The water, trees and sky that drew the family here remain the focus of this home, both inside and out. “There are windows everywhere and it really feels like you are amongst the trees,” Andie says. “The reason we love this place is for the trees and lake. The house really displays nature well.”

ages its human inhabitants to connect with nature and each other in unobtrusive ways. This home has grown into more than just a second home or new and improved cabin. It’s become a true gathering place. “Life is short and unpredictable at times,” says Ted. “We don’t always know when we will be able to get together as a group, so we should have a place to visit and make memories when we can.” ~L&H

The Truitt home on Thunder Lake showcases the outside world. It puts the vistas and forests of the Northwoods first and encour-

“There are windows everywhere and it really feels like you are amongst the trees. The reason we love this place is for the trees and lake. The house really displays nature well.” Andie Truitt || Homeowner

94 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021


CouLDn’t have done it without: Lands End Development

| BUILDER

• View our ad on page 83

Big Wood Timber Frames Blue Water Wells Brainerd Glass

| RECLAIMED TIMBERS

| WELLS

| SHOWER DOORS

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Burns Brothers Masonry

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Capital Granite & Marble

Crosslake Sheetmetal

| COUNTERTOPS

• View our ad on page 87 | HVAC AND FIREPLACE

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Don’s Masonry Excel Painting

| STONEWORK

| PAINTING

Franzen Brothers Plastering Great Northern Door Co. Hirshfield’s

| PAINT & FINISHING MATERIALS

| CABINETRY

• View our ad on page 94

Lakes Millwork

| DOORS & HARDWARE

Mattson Lumber

| BUILDING MATERIALS

• View our ad on page 91

MCI Carpet One

| CUSTOM DOORS

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Ivy Woodcraft

| DRYWALL

| CARPET SUPPLIER

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McPherson Products

| INSULATION & WATERPROOFING

North Country Plumbing & Heating | PLUMBING & HEATING North Fork Boulders & Excavating

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| LOG & TIMBER

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Select Seamless

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Sharp-Edge Wood Floors

| WOOD FLOORING

• View our ad on page 93

Skarloken Stone & Tile

| TILE INSULATION

Stonemark Land Surveying The Tile Shop

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Warners’ Stellian Appliance Vision Electric

| SURVEYORS

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Top Notch Exteriors

| ROCK & EXCAVATING

• View our ad on page 95

| APPLIANCES

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• View our ad on page 87

Wood’s Landscaping

| LANDSCAPING


F

FEATURE HOME

96 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021


B

uilding homes has become a bit of a hobby for Dave and Jolette Olig.

“Between us, I think this is the ninth house that we have built,” said Dave. “We each built a couple before we were together, but this is the sixth we’ve done together.” That sum includes three lake homes, including their feature home in this issue. There’s an old bit of wisdom which alleges some marriages are not cut out to survive the stresses of building and moving. Don’t lump Dave and Jolette in with that group. “But, I will tell you that this will be the last one,” he says, sharing a burst of laughter with Jolette. After catching her breath, Jolette adds, “It does get harder, though.” “The internet makes it harder,” he agrees. “There’s too many choices!”

Finding a Lot

The couple’s previous lake home stood on Big Cormorant Lake, a few miles west of Detroit Lakes. It was part of a planned unit development that shared common shoreline and access on the lake.

“We had a beautiful home there, and we loved it,” says Jolette. Over time, however, the hustle and bustle of the growing community on Big Cormorant got them thinking about finding a lot that offered a little more peace and quiet, with its own lakeshore. So in 2018, they decided to sell and build again. At the time, the couple made their permanent home in Fargo. Not long after they found a buyer for the Big Cormorant home, they attended a graduation party back in their Fargo neighborhood. While visiting, the topic

98 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021

of their lake home came up, and they broke the news of the pending sale and their plan to build in a new location. One of their neighbors piped up at that point, suggesting that they build next to him on Big McDonald Lake, near Dent, Minn. He explained that he and his wife owned two adjacent lots and had decided to sell the second one. The Oligs already knew the spot well. Close friends of theirs owned the home on the


president, Rick Bladow, has built homes in Lake Country for more than 25 years, beginning in the trade with his father and now collaborating with his daughter, Tiffany. As a drafting veteran, Rick draws up plans on paper exhibiting an old-school vibe that he deftly translates to beautiful, high-end, custom homes. “When we got together, they had some sketches of what they wanted for their new home,” says Bladow. “After making a few changes, we ended up with a plan that they were very happy with and we started putting some numbers together.”

opposite side of the lot, and they knew they liked the lake from several visits to Big McDonald over the years. It’s not often someone gets to choose who lives next door, and, “He wanted to make sure he knew who his next door neighbor was,” says Jolette. “We jumped at the chance. So, we ended up building right between the lake homes of two of our really good friends.” As an added benefit, the owner of the lot had originally anticipated building there, according to Jolette. “So, he had gotten the beach all ready.” The lot had extensive landscaping near the shoreline, the beach was clean and kept up, and it had a dock. That part was ready for the Oligs to use from day one.

The handshake agreement struck at the party became official August 27th of 2019 and it was time for their dream to begin taking shape.

Connecting With a Builder

With a wealth of experience in the homebuilding process, Dave and Jolette were anxious to get the ball rolling. They started with the avenue closest to their fingertips: the internet. “I actually did what people do these days, I turned to Google for a list of contractors in that region,” says Dave. To the Oligs, Bladow Construction (bladowconstruction.com) stood out as a multi-generational family business with a 50-year history in homebuilding. Company

100 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021


Minnesota Coastal

After so many builds, Dave and Jolette began with a pretty good idea of how they wanted to live in their home and how it should come together. It may seem obvious, but the focal point of lakeside property is the lake, which translates to making the most of views and access to the shoreline. For the Oligs, those aspects stood in the forefront of their minds. “The entire backside is all windows,” says Jolette. Furthermore, they wanted a large, covered gathering space outdoors with similar views and access. “We have a 50-foot porch with easy access from all the living areas.” “It’s a pretty simple house,” she says. “Nothing super elaborate, but it has nice quality in it, very livable.” Jolette, who handled the interior design for the home, describes the style as Minnesota coastal. “It’s very light. There’s lots of white and light colors to keep it open and airy,” she says. “It’s a different look than the Northwoodsy style — more beachside.”

“Our last lake place had a lot of dark woods, more traditional in how it was done” says Jolette. “This was a little more modern, so it was a little out of my comfort zone in some ways.” The internet, however, offered a wealth of stylistic examples, which she consumed voraciously to dial in her vision for the home.

Shaped for Lake Life

Overall, the floorplan represents a variation on a rambler, with three bedrooms and an open design. The kitchen is located at the center of the house, between the front door and the garage, with the laundry and a mudroom tucked behind. In front of the open kitchen, stands the dining area, which allows clear sightlines to the lake from either room through a pair of patio doors. To the left, the dining room flows into a great room, which features a cathedral vault, access to the open porch and dramatic, backlit built-ins around a gas fireplace. Beyond that, the master suite with more views of the lake and the spare bedrooms with a dedicated bathroom tucked behind.

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To the right of the dining room lies one of the Oligs’ favorite spots: A cozy sitting area in front of one of the patio doors, with a built-in wet bar along the back wall, that has become one of their favorite spots in the house. “My brother used to have a T-shirt that said, ‘Sometimes I sit and think, and sometimes I just sit,’” says Dave. “At the lake, you get to do a little bit of both. I spend a lot of time there — looking at the lake, honestly, and reading. It’s a very comfortable spot for drinking coffee in the morning.” “That’s the place we probably spend the most time, is those two chairs in front of the patio doors,” adds Jolette. “And the view is

fantastic,” Dave continues. “That’s why you go to the lake.” Adjacent to the sitting area is a three-season porch, enclosed with lightweight, vinyl windows. “It’s a multi-track window made by Sun Space,” says Bladow. “Those panels all fold into an 8-inch stack, so it gives you a full screen porch that you can close off to the elements.” It features a gas fireplace of stacked stone that makes the space comfortable in all but the coldest days of the year.

Leading With the Kitchen

As far as interior style goes, the Oligs’ kitchen set the tone for the entire home. The shakerstyle cabinets were painted white, with a white Cambria quartz countertop called Ironsbridge. For contrast, the island and the fronts on two stacks of drawers were made from knotty alder and finished with an ebony stain. These textures and colors were mirrored on cabinetry and trim throughout the home.

102 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021

Jolette wanted a large space for cooking and eating on the island with the sink embedded, so she could enjoy the view while working. Unfortunately, she says, the quartz only comes in lengths up to about 11 feet, so they had to get creative to avoid the need for a seam in the countertop. The answer: Raise one end, which solved two problems. Not only did it create a natural break to disguise the countertop extension, it also lifted the drawer-style microwave mounted in the island’s end for easier access. “Dave’s tall and I’m not,” says Jolette. “So that height works really well for both of us. It also gave the island the length we wanted.” Across from the microwave stands a pantry and coffee bar, also with the lighted, open shelving found throughout the home. Over the stove she chose a custom-made Vent-aHood. “We’ve always had range hoods where it’s built into the cabinets,” she says. “This gave the kitchen a cleaner, more contemporary look.”


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The cabinetry was such a significant design feature in this home that Bladow brought in the cabinet builder in the early stages of the design. Mike Sanders of Ottertail Cabinet Company took on the project, and Jolette kept him hopping. “I kind of drove them crazy,” she admits. Around the hood, she selected an imported Italian tile for the wall with a texture that complemented the simplicity of the cabinets and the style of the hood. However, it did create some problems. First of all, the tile itself has dimension to it. “It is a four-sided tile that comes out about threequarters of an inch, to a point,” says Bladow. “So you really couldn’t do wall outlets to get the covers and the boxes to fit properly. So we did outlets on the underside of the cabinets.” Although the outlets had already been positioned when it came time to pick out the tile, Rick says it was still early enough that they could easily make the change.

The second issue was getting the tile into the country. Although the project had started early enough to avoid the materials shortages and price increases that surfaced later in the year, delays on the manufacturing end left the tile outside the United States when the borders closed because of COVID. The actual installation of the tile had to wait until September, nearly four months after the move-in date. Jolette and Dave also chose to keep the flooring consistent, using a top-grade luxury vinyl-plank everywhere in the home save for some wood-grain tile in some of the bathrooms. They chose Delta Rustic Pine by COREtec.

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The Rest of the House

The great room stands as the textbook definition of “light and airy.” Despite the views of the lake and the abundant glass, the focal point of the room is the floor-to-ceiling, stacked stone fireplace, flanked by built-ins to either side. “Everything used for this home was a cut stone,” explains Bladow. “It wasn’t cultured, so it is actually real stone that’s cut into veneer.” The fireplaces both in the great room and the three-season porch share a style. “It’s a tight stack put together with no mortar,” he says. “So, it’s called tight stack. The particular stone used here is MSI RockMount split-face in Silver Travertine.”

Some of the finishing touches on display in the open shelves were actually made by Dave. He created both the blue segmented vase and the natural-edged wooden bowl on his lathe, which now resides in one of the two large hobby rooms in the home’s lower level. Lining the vaulted ceiling in the great room is nickel-gap shiplap, which is currently growing in popularity. “It’s kind of taken over the V-joint,” according to Bladow. It was finished with an off-white tone called “Origami white.” Faux beams break up the length of the ceiling, constructed box-style and painted to match the shiplap. As with all the poplar trim in the house, Bladow has the first coat of paint applied to the box beam pieces before installation. Then as work nears completion, the painter returns to caulk gaps, repair blemishes and apply the final coat. “The painter was a miracle worker,” Jolette states. “He would make things look perfect afterwards.”

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“The stain we used there is actually a custom mix,” she continued. “The picture I saw used gray paint, but I was concerned about the paint surviving all the in-and-out with kids banging into it and stuff.”

Exterior Work

Although the previous owner of the lot completed quite a bit of landscaping, Bladow did have to remove an existing garage from the property before beginning and do some fairly extensive grading between the new structure and the road. For the exterior surfaces, the Oligs chose 8-inch LP lap siding for the walls painted in a blue-gray tone called Graphite and cutstone accents of Midnight Country Manor by Eden Stone. On the gables they elected for a

Looking into the master suite, “We didn’t get too carried away with that,” says Bladow. “It has a tile walk-in shower in the bath with double sinks and a walk-in closet behind the bathroom. They did a tray ceiling vault in the bedroom with pendant lights on either side of the bed, which is a nice feature.” Jolette thought the mudroom also turned out particularly well. Positioned for easy access off the service door to the garage, the mudroom runs behind the kitchen and connects to the laundry. She says the inspiration for the built-ins arranged around the window came from a trip to Kansas City to visit their daughter. “We walked into a tile decorating place on a whim and they had a picture of this built-in cabinet with a sitting area,” she recalls. “So I snapped a picture and the cabinet builder recreated it around the window. The one that I saw had hooks to hang coats in the center, but I wanted it built so that you could look out the window and still have the storage space.” 106 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021


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contrasting board-and-batten style in a creamy off-white with the top 5 feet of each peak covered with a white 6-inch shiplap. The pillar bases show more of the stone, with box columns framed on top. Facing the lake, these were painted white, but in the front, they were constructed of cedar and stained brown to match the garage doors.

Getting Comfortable

After moving in over Memorial Day weekend of 2020, the home’s interior has continued to evolve, reports Jolette, taking on a more comfortable and nuanced feel as they live in it. Life has settled into a routine and the couple remains very happy with their work. They do, however, look forward to entertaining in the future, with some additions to support it. “And there’s a tiki bar coming, too!” she laughed. “That’s going to be cool.” ~L&H 108 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021


CouLDn’t have done it without: Bladow Construction

Fergus Well Co

| COUNTERTOPS

All Seasons Heating & Cooling

Pro Floor & Tile

| PAINTING

| FLOORING, TILE

Vacationland Plumbing Ohren Electric

| ELECTRIC

| CABINETS

| SECURITY

Overhead Door of Fargo Precision Landscaping

Hebron Brick

| LANDSCAPING

| GUTTERS

| FIREPLACE

• View our ad on page 107

Ottertail Glass

| SHOWER DOORS

• View our ad on page 67

Coatings Unlimited

| GARAGE DOOR

• View our ad on page 103,130

Norson Window & Glass

| EXCAVATING

Hilltop Lumber

| PLUMBING

• View our ad on page 105,125,131

Don Schmidt

| HVAC

• View our ad on page 109,130

Trosdahl Painting

Night Owl

| MASONRY

Fabricators Unlimited

| APPLIANCES

Ottertail Cabinetry

| WELL

Reid Olson Masonry

Rigels

| BUILDER

• View our ad on page 99

| GARAGE FLOORS

• View our ad on page 131

| BUILDING MATERIALS

• View our ad on page 15,107

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years earlier had too many structural issues for them to attempt an overall remodel. With almost an acre of land to work with, they wanted to find the right balance to give them the “Up North cabin feel” they desired.

Dreaming

“This is a place for us to go, to relax and play games and enjoy the lake,” says Sara. “It’s our cabin, not our home, so we wanted a timeless kind of look that was ‘cabinny,’ but wasn’t too rustic or too trendy.”

innesota is known for an abundance of lakes, and for every one of those 10,000plus lakes, there are hundreds of different ways to enjoy them. From the buzz of activity on a large, resort-filled lake, to the quiet solitude of a small, more private lake with no public access, there is something for everyone.

For one family, spending 15 summer vacations at Kavanaugh’s Resort on Sylvan Lake found them often dreaming of owning their own cabin on that lake. Located in the Brainerd Lakes area, it’s small enough (800 acres) to provide a cozy atmosphere, but big enough to allow their family to enjoy water and beach activities. Those dreams led them to where they are now... enjoying the new cabin they recently built. It’s situated in the perfect location on the perfect lake – for them. Building that perfect cabin on Sylvan Lake meant starting from scratch for Sara and Mark. The existing cabin they purchased four

Building

They chose Hy-Tec Construction, a design/ build firm located in Brainerd, to build the perfect cabin. “The homeowners reached out to us after we had remodeled the house next door, and those neighbors gave us a good review,” says Mitch Feierabend, general manager and owner of Hy-Tec Construction, which has been building and remodeling homes in the Brainerd area for 30 years. “We try to take the stress out of building a house by being hands-on, making it an enjoyable experience for the homeowners. Troy Palmer

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“We try to take the stress out of building a house by being hands-on, making it an enjoyable experience for the homeowners.” Mitch Feierabend / Hy-Tec Construction


was our superintendent for this project, and he and his team were on site every day during the construction. Mark and Sara are great people, and we all worked together toward the very best outcome for them.” Hy-Tec’s lead designer, Andy Waletzko, and interior designer, Sarah Waletzko, guided these homeowners throughout the design process. “I look at all aspects before I design the house, and we try to learn as much as we can about what’s important to them and how they’re going to use the house,” says Andy. “Mark and Sara are true ‘lake people,’ and we wanted to focus on their gorgeous lake view, trying to maximize that view as we laid out the rooms.”

Beginning with the color scheme on the cabin’s exterior, it becomes evident that this is “not like all the other cabins.” Sara says that when Andy and Sarah at Hy-Tec showed her their idea for the exterior, “I loved it right away. The wood siding seems to blend in with the trees around it, and the ‘Midnight Blue’ accents add some subtle color.” A wrap-around porch also contributes to the Up North look of the exterior. “The one thing I wanted to duplicate from the original structure was the covered porch,” says Mark. “The way it was built out from the cabin gave us three-way views of the lake.”

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Although they had to give up some of their indoor living space to get exactly what they wanted, both agree it was worth it. “Part of the porch is covered, and part of it is open,” Mark adds. “It’s our favorite place to sit outside and have coffee in the morning – then enjoy a beer from the local Jack Pine Brewery later in the day under the porch roof.”

Designing

With the Up North cabin feel in mind, Andy’s design included an assortment of roof lines, with changes of pitch to also create a classic, craftsman-style look.

“On the interior, we added extensive beam work, and a large, modern, wide-open kitchen and living area.” Andy Waletzko / Hy-Tec Construction

“On the interior, we added extensive beam work, and a large, modern, wide-open kitchen and living area,” he explains. “They have three daughters, and it was important to them to have seating space in the kitchen for when all their friends come to the cabin.” As the design process began, Sara says she

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knew in her head “kind of how” she wanted it to be, but she needed someone to put it down on paper. “I don’t even know exactly how many plans were drawn up,” Sara says with a laugh. “Andy was very patient with us, and if he was ever frustrated, he didn’t show it. I never felt I couldn’t ask him to change it again.” For instance, the original plan included a walk-out lower level, but did not include a second-story bedroom area.

“Then Mark decided that although we were locating the master bedroom on the main floor, he wanted the girls’ three bedrooms in an upstairs area,” she says. “I’m so glad we have it now. With the open walkway, I can call up to them. It makes it cozier, and it feels like we’re all together, even though we each have our own space.” By adding the second story, they ended up with more bedrooms than originally planned. There are two additional bedrooms in the basement, providing privacy for guests. It’s also a space where the girls and their friends can “stay up giggling late into the night.”

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The heart of the main living area, of course, is the dramatic floor-to-ceiling stone fireplace. Measuring 19 feet in height, it is made up of thin-cut real veneer stone called “Bucks Creek Ashlar,” which was quarried in Oklahoma and purchased from Brock White, a local stone supplier. “Hy-Tec has a number of skilled craftsmen on our staff,” Mitch claims, “and our very talented masons, Kenny Schiller and Vince Simenstad, hand-picked every stone as they built the fireplace.”


Sara and Mark decided to rent a cabin at Kavanaugh’s Resort in the spring so they could be nearby during the construction of their new cabin, and have a chance to watch the daily progress. “During the construction of the fireplace, it was so much fun to watch, and it was really cool to see how they selected and placed each stone,” says Sara. “They were true artists.” One other interesting add-on to this cabin is what the family calls “The Lake Room.” As part of the basement walk-out that leads to the lake, it was built to hold any and all of their many different lake toys. With corrugated metal walls, it serves as a practical and durable storage solution.

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Landscaping

To develop and implement a landscaping plan for the entire area around the cabin, they chose Mike Donovan of Outdoor Living Landscapes, located in Brainerd. “It was a bit challenging because of how the house sits on the lot, with the hill, the driveway, and the size of the parking area,” Donovan explains. “We used a lot of boulders, but wanted to make it look like there weren’t a lot of boulders. It was important to have them flow with the yard.” Similar to the home’s design plan, the master landscaping plan was revised many times along the way, but Sara and Mark always trusted Donvan’s vision. “Having a customer who totally trusts you doesn’t happen very often,” Donovan says, “but they allowed me to change the plan as we went along as far as what would work better.” As they began settling into the cabin, Sara realized that she was often at the kitchen sink, which looked out onto the back yard.

“I asked Mike if he could possibly create something that I would be able to look at out of that window,” she says. “He designed a pattern of rocks in a circular arrangement, with perennial plants around that circle. It’s a window that I look out of and don’t see the lake, but with that beautiful landscaping – when I’m in the kitchen, doing dishes or whatever – it’s one of my favorite windows to look out.”

“I want our cabin to be a comfortable and fun place where our girls, our extended family, and hopefully someday our grandchildren, will continue to enjoy coming Up North – and continue making memories.” Sara / Homeowner

(218) 330-7846 | trina@luminousprints.com | www.luminousprints.com 118 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021


CouLDn’t have done it without: Hy-Tec Construction

| BUILDER

• View our ad on page 115

Northern Wells & Service Expert Insulation Brock White

| INSULATION

| MASONRY

Lake Country Granite

| COUNTERTOPS

HVAC Tech and Heating Jansen Painting

| PAINTING

• View our ad on page 19

Jansen Painting

| PAINTING

MCI Carpet One

| HVAC

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Geo’s Paint & Finish

| WELL

| WOOD FLOORS

• View our ad on page 89

Superior Home Builders

| CARPET

Pine Country Plumbing & Heating Sibbert Drywall

| DRYWALL

Northern Lakes Electric G & L Excavating

| ELECTRIC

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Builders FirstSource Tile Craftworks

| BUILDING MATERIALS, WINDOWS, SIDING

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• View our ad on page 119

Wood Products Unlimited

| PLUMBING

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• View our ad on page 117,130

W.W. Thompson Concrete Products

• View our ad on page 113

Select Garage Door Co.

| GARAGE DOOR

Outdoor Living Landscapes Advantage Seamless Fabulous Glass

| GUTTERS

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Anderson Brothers

Enjoying

| LANDSCAPING

| PAVING

For Sara and Mark, this cabin will always be a destination where they can go and get away from anything and everything. “My grandparents introduced me to the Brainerd Lakes area when I was a little girl,” Sara adds. “Since my grandpa died two years ago, being at the cabin brings back such good memories of the time we spent Up North with him and my grandma. I want our cabin to be a comfortable and fun place where our girls, our extended family, and hopefully someday our grandchildren, will continue to enjoy coming Up North – and continue making memories.” ~L&H


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homes around the area, Cory Reinertson of Reinertson Construction Inc. We were really impressed with his work. He’s a positive, cando guy.” Reinertson Construction Inc., specializes in new construction and remodeling, and Cory was hired to be the general contractor on the Whittier addition and renovation project.

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veryone loves to escape the busyness of life, and the Whittier family is no exception. One of their favorite places to go to rejuvenate is the lake home that they lovingly call “Whit’s End.”

sold the property to the Whittiers in 2011. Eventually, they realized the single-wide trailer would need to be replaced, so they decided to put a manufactured home in its place. Their sons and their families make good use of the guest house when they come to visit.

The three-lot property on South Lida Lake was originally purchased in 1992 by Mark and Kari Whittier and Kari’s parents.

“In 2017, we started dreaming about how we could update the kitchen, and one thing led to another, and we decided that maybe we should just gut it,” Kari said. “We wanted to maximize the lake view because the windows weren’t as big as we would have liked, and then we ended up putting an addition on, too.”

When her parents decided to retire, they built a small retirement home on two of the lots. A single-wide trailer sat on the third lot. After enjoying 15 years of retirement at the lake, Kari’s parents decided to move into senior living apartments in Fergus Falls and

“When we were going through the dream stage, we knew of a guy that had worked on

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Kari continued, “Our house tends to be a gathering spot, and there is a lot of food that gets fixed and served in that kitchen, so I really need that space.” “It truly is my dream kitchen.” The dining room ceiling is tongue and groove pine with a whitewash finish. Many of the remnants of what once was in the home are gone, but hanging overhead is a light fixture that was originally installed by her parents when they owned the property. The homeowners love the windows surrounding the space. “It is so light and bright in the dining room, and we just love having family meals in there,” Kari said.

“They were fantastic to work with,” Reinertson said of the homeowners. When the Whittiers decided to begin renovating the property, they knew they wanted to redo the kitchen completely, but they also wanted to maximize the lake view from the home. “We added more windows and eliminated all of the double-hung windows,” Kari said. “We were then also able to expand the kitchen,” Kari continued. “We put a 9-foot island in, a built-in hutch at the end of the kitchen, and we were able to fit in many more cabinets for storage.” Maple StarMark cabinetry with the Valliant door style hangs on the walls, painted in a

beautiful soft white color called Dove. The kitchen island is made of alder wood and has a tarragon, gray-brown finish. The kitchen backsplash from Ragno has a reclaimed brick look. The countertops are Cambria in New Quay, and the Boardwalk Oak COREtec flooring is a beautiful mix of brown and gray tones. “We were also able to incorporate a pantry adjacent to the lake room, which is great for storage.”

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The living room features a gas fireplace made with Boulder Creek cultured stone. “The addition also included adding on a master bedroom, bathroom, and a sitting area with patio doors. We also have a walk-in closet right off the bathroom,” Kari said. A trap door located in their master closet gives the homeowners easy access to the crawl space under the addition, and as a bonus, it makes a great storm shelter in case of emergencies. Instead of taking up precious space in their master bedroom with a headboard, the homeowners decided they would put shiplap painted Four-Wheel Gray on the walls and placed their king-sized bed against the wall. Sconces hang on each side of the bed, giving the homeowners ample light for reading when they tuck in for the night. Opposite the bed is a little nook with two Danish chairs where the homeowners can relax and look out at the lake through a sliding patio door.

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When the renovation was complete, the structure was 1,650 square feet. “We didn’t want our lake home to be big and overwhelming. The home is big on function and low on maintenance,” Kari said. The Whittiers own Canby Drug & Gifts in Canby, Minn., and much of the décor in their lake home is from their store. Kari loves to decorate, so they decided to expand their business in 2001 and began selling various home accents, like wall art, lamps, tables, and clocks. “Our decorating goal was to create a light, airy feeling,” Kari said. “It is calming, with

“If we have guests, we have our own little hangout for coffee or reading,” Kari said. The cabinetry from Mid Continent in the master bathroom features the Murano door style and is painted in the color Iron. The cultured marble countertop is from Central Marble Products. The doorway into the walk-in shower in the master bathroom is small, so the homeowners decided that instead of having the accent tile go around the perimeter of the space, they would have the tile viewable from the doorway in a vertical design. The accent strip of Cristalla sage-colored tile goes from the ceiling to the floor. Light gray tile from Wonder Porcelain in the Arcadia style covers the floor and completes the shower.

“The other part of the addition is what we call the lake room,” Kari said. “We sacrificed some space in our master bedroom in order to make the lake room larger.” “What we’ve always wanted was to be able to have as much view of the lake as possible, so that room is all windows. The furniture is all arranged so everyone can be looking out at the lake.” Kari added, “We have such a beautiful view of Maplewood State Park.” Because of the home’s location and the angle it sits at on the lot, the homeowners were able to increase their view of the hills across the lake when they added on to the home.

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simple décor, bringing the outside in, with whites, grays, weathered wood, and shiplap accents.” Additional furnishings for the home came from Jaeger Furniture in Fergus Falls. The former master bedroom has been updated and now has white shiplap walls. A doorway off the mudroom coming in from the garage leads to a third bedroom that is used as an office or extra space for guests. The homeowners also added a third stall to their two-stall garage on the opposite end of the home, where the addition was completed. The stone on the exterior of the home was purchased from Hebron Brick. The Smoky Ash LP Smart siding is contrasted with white trim. Deckmasters of Fargo supplied the pergola on the lakeside of the house. Simple landscaping surrounds the property, ensuring that upkeep remains low maintenance,

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The homeowners worked a great deal with Fergus Home & Hardware during the renovation process. Living two hours away provided challenges to the renovation, but working with the right people made all the difference for the homeowners. “Since we are not retired, we don’t have a ton of time,” Kari said. “It was nice to have a onestop shop. They took care of so many things that we needed.” The StarMark cabinetry, COREtec flooring, bathroom tiles, kitchen appliances, Cambria countertops, and the Hunter Douglas roller shades came from Fergus Home & Hardware, to name a few. Lakeside Lumber in Ashby provided the lumber, Anderson 100 series Windows, and LP Smart siding. Derosier Masonry completed all of the installation of the masonry and cement work for the foundation. Ohren Electric out of Dalton, installed the electricity.

allowing the homeowners to spend their time on the lake relaxing rather than working. Reinertson lauds the efficiency of the exterior. “The outside livable space is a really great feature for the house,” he mentioned. “The size of the house, even with the addition, isn’t very big. However, the way they did their outdoor living space makes it so you’d never need to be inside in the summertime.” Being business owners themselves, the Whittiers know the importance of working with local businesses. Almost all of the materials and services provided during the renovation process were from the Fergus Falls area. 128 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021


CouLDn’t have done it without: Reinertson Construction

Lakeside Lumber

| BUILDER

• View our ad on page 127 | BUILDING MATERIALS

• View our ad on page 129

Fergus Home & Hardware

APPLIANCES, FLOORING, TILE

• View our ad on page 123

Ohren Electric

| FIREPLACE,

| ELECTRIC

• View our ad on page 105,125,123

Nelson Plumbing

| PLUMBING

Skjerets Concrete

| CONCRETE

Jaeger Furniture

| FURNITURE

• View our ad on page 125

Newman Painting Hebron Brick

| INTERIOR PAINTING

| EXTERIOR

• View our ad on page 107

Corey Budke

| DIRT WORK, TILLING, HYDROSEEDING

Deckmasters

| PERGOLA

• View our ad on page 127

Nelson Plumbing, Skjeret’s Decorative Concrete, and Newman & Sons Painting were also part of the renovation project. The homeowners use the property year-round. The family enjoys the usual summer activities at the lake, but they also use it during the winter months by going cross country skiing and ice fishing. “It’s a getaway for us that we absolutely love,” Kari said of their beloved Whit’s End lake home. “When we get there, we can just take a deep breath and relax.” ~L&H

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INSULATION

LUMBER

ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR

MASONRY

WINDOW TREATMENTS

ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR

FLOORING

CABINETS

LANDSCAPING

FLOORING

CABINETS

QUARTZ & GRANITE

MARINE / WATERCRAFT REPAIR

SHOWERS

HEATING & AIR CONDITIONING

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CONSTRUCTION

GARAGE DOORS

ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR

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CREATIVE TOUCH BOUTIQUE 320-762-8786 | 516 Broadway St, Alexandria, MN

We are a boutique store in downtown Alexandria, which carries home décor, gifts, and clothing. We specialize in women’s clothing with an emphasis on being cute, comfortable, and affordable. One whole section of the store is devoted to Minnesota clothing. Here you’ll find T-shirts, sweatshirts and hats for both men and women. Also included in this section are gift items and home décor with a lake theme, which includes personalized lake signs, lake map jar candles, cribbage boards, beer glasses, and coffee mugs. You will also find hundreds of signs with many featuring lake sayings. Follow us on both Facebook and Instagram. The store is open year-round, seven days a week, right in the middle of the bustling downtown Alexandria shopping district!

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MAINSTREAM BOUTIQUE 833 Washington Ave | Detroit Lakes, MN 218-844-4990 Hours: M-F 10-5 | Sat 10-4 | Sun Closed

Established in 2014 as a women’s boutique, we strive to empower and encourage women to embrace their inner beauty. We believe and educate on the power of self-esteem and help women find styles that flatter their shape and fit their lifestyle. With new fashion arriving daily we know that women want to see fresh styles both online and in the store. Mainstream works with vendors who are exclusive to our stores. We pride ourselves on finding apparel markets that are as unique as the women we serve. We cover sizes xsm-xlg in an affordable price range. Mainstream Boutique carries fashion from casual lake wear to a fun evening out. Customers also love to shop our shoes, scarves, purses, greeting cards, gifts and jewelry including the popular Brighton line of jewelry. We sell online through our Facebook page of Mainstream Boutique-Detroit Lakes and on Instagram mainstreamdetroitlakes.


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THE BRIC

PERIWINKLE MARKETPLACE

215 W Lincoln Ave | Fergus Falls, MN 218-998-2225 | Open Mon thru Fri | 10am - 4pm

328 MN Hwy 78 | Ottertail, MN 218-367-3900 Open 7 Days a Week | Mon thru Sun | 10am - 5pm Memorial Day to Labor Day | 9am to 6pm Daily

We carry trendy and fashionable clothing for women of all ages and sizes. We also have price points that will fit all budgets. The Bric prides itself of being a full service store. You’ll never feel pressured to purchase. Our goal is to provide everyone that comes in our doors with a wonderful shopping experience. Oftentimes, a lady walks into our doors as a stranger and leaves as a friend. We now have two levels at the Bric. Our inventory includes clothing, bath and body, accessories, shoes, toys, baby gifts as well as sweatshirts for both men and women. We can accommodate nearly any occasion in the department of gifts for both men and women. We have beautiful lines of candles, tabletop dressings and fabulous home décor. Also, many small furniture pieces and large scale clocks to compliment many decorating styles. Please like us on our Facebook page where you’ll find pics of exciting new arrivals.

Welcome to Periwinkle! All Things Lake! Periwinkle Marketplace is an Ottertail city shopping favorite. Find women’s clothing, jewelry, kids, home decor, and all things lake! Stephanie Ellingson Dykhoff and her crew are known for making a walk into the store a great experience! “It’s been 21 years (since 2000) and it feels like only yesterday that we started Periwinkle in Fergus Falls!!  Thanks for supporting our stores throughout the years! We would not be here without you!! You are the reason we continue to grow!”

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DOT & MINNIE’S AND LEVEL III

OTTER COFFEE AND ICE CREAM

dotandminnies.com | leveliiiboutique.com 148 1st Ave S | Perham, MN 56573 | 218-346-4180

117 E Main St, Vergas, MN 56587 218-342-4702 | www.ottercoffeevergas

Dot & Minnie’s is a true boutique—a collection of unique clothing lines you’d be hard-pressed to find together anywhere else, but will find in downtown Perham! What you will find is a wide range of classic styles, from reserved to edgy... and the funky jewelry to go with them! Not quite your style? Try our sister store across the street, Level iii. There we stock trendy styles in an industrial setting. Whatever your style, we have something for you! Most of our styles are available for purchase from our extensive websites, dotandminnies.com and leveliiiboutique.com. Shop by type of item or by brand; have it shipped, or held for pickup! Need additional information on an item? Email or call and you’ll have your answer within 24 hours—we try on more for customers than for ourselves!

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Otter Coffee Vergas is more than a coffee shop—it is an Otter Tail county experience! Enjoy several products from throughout Otter Tail County. Fresh Stumbeano’s coffee, scones, and muffins are featured. Honey, raspberry syrup, maple syrup, and wild rice are in-store staples. Fresh Bread Fridays from Falls Baking Company are a great time to try our delicious local jellies. You can treat yourself to ice cream, milk shakes, and smoothies. When it’s time to relax, join us on our private patio for a glass of wine and charcuterie tray. Browse the local art and jewelry. Need a hostess gift? Everyone loves a taste of Otter Tail! Gift baskets and coffee are all available online and can be shipped. Dogs are welcome and “puppachinos” are our specialty! Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for up-to-date activities and specials. Otter Coffee has the “Best Milk Shakes” in Otter Tail county! We ship custom gift baskets- Let us help you with gift ideas. Take out/curbside delivery available, call ahead 218-342-4702 NEW Otter Coffee Candles Made in Vergas! Lite Coffee/Vanilla Scent NEW Spiked Cold Brew Add to your coffee or sip over ice while reading your favorite book. NEW Mary’s Mittens, Made in Vergas, MN


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LAKE & HOME MAGAZINE 126 S Vine | Fergus Falls, MN artwork@lakeandhomemagazine.com www.lakeandhomemagazine.com

Subscriptions Purchase your own subscription, renewal or gift subscription of Lake & Home Magazine directly from our website (shown above). Find inspiration and ideas for interior design, building, landscaping and more! Framed Photos Send us your favorite lake photos or family memories - and we’ll print a poster-sized version for your home. We can even provide a frame for your art! Send your artwork and information to artwork@lakeandhomemagazine, and we’ll be happy to provide you with pricing for your custom project.

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BEYOND THE MITRED CORNERS 409 W Stanton Ave | Fergus Falls, MN 218-998-4147 Open Tuesday - Friday 10-6 and Saturday 9-12

Beyond The Mitred Corners has added Fusion Mineral Paint for your shopping experience. Fusion Mineral Paint can be used for every project from cabinets to dining room tables to dressers. The possibilities are endless for its use. • Easy Application • Built-in Top Coat • Won’t Fade or Crack • 100% Acrylic • Exceptional Adhesion and Durability • Zero VOC A little off the beaten path but well worth the trip. Open the door to a shop with beautiful quality merchandise and a few surprises. You will be sure to find just the right piece for every room in the house. You can even have that perfect picture framed with personal service. Mitred Corners, Fergus Falls-the shop you will be glad you stopped.

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NEW YORK MILLS REGIONAL CULTURAL CENTER 24 N Main Ave | New York Mills, MN 56567 218-385-3339 | www.kulcher.org fb - @CCNYM | IG - @nymkulcher Open Wednesday & Thursday 10am-7pm Friday 10am-5pm | Saturday 10am-3pm Multidisciplinary rural art center; venue for literary, performing, and visual arts, retail gift shop; sculpture park, artist residency program. Shop local and support local artists! Unique gifts from over 100 regional artists include: jewelry, cards, prints, ceramics, books, music, fabric arts, practical home decor, and so much more. Also your local source for Finnish candies & coffee, Iittala glassware, and traditional and contemporary Native American artwork.

ANNOUNCING THE 28TH ANNUAL THINK-OFF QUESTION:

which is more important:

TO WIN OR TO

PLAY BY THE RULES? ESSAYS DUE APRIL 1 brought to you by: NEW YORK MILLS REGIONAL CULTURAL CENTER

Calling all armchair philosophers! How have you experienced winning or losing? Did you play by the rules, or not? How did you feel when you won by following the rules? How did you feel if you lost to someone who didn’t follow the rules? We want to hear about YOUR experiences and how they formed your opinion on this topic. Submit an essay by April 1 for your chance to win $500 and defend your position in front of a live audience in June. To participate: Write a philosophical essay. Submit by April 1. Attend debate on June 12. Learn more at THINK-OFF.ORG EVENTS March 16 @ 7pm Kardemimmit St. Urho’s Day Livestream Concert IN THE GALLERY March 3 - April 3 Wood Interpretations: Dick Dubord, Dick Skauge, Barry Kutzer April 28 - May 29 Photographs by Jamie Robertson ARTIST IN RESIDENCE March Tim Rogers, Poet from Czech Republic April Kathryn Beavers, Visual Artist from Philadelphia, PA WORKSHOPS March 6 Decorating Small Wood Slices March 10 Open Studio: Drawing Basics March 11 Art for Lunch: Macrame April 3 Pisanki Egg Dying April 8 Art for Lunch: Basket Weaving April 14 Open Studio: Drawing Basics Visit our website kulcher.org and follow us on social media (Facebook & Twitter @ccnym, Instagram @nymkulcher) for the latest news & events! 136 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021


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FEATURED LAKE

Source: Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

Size: 1,346 Acres Max Depth: 95 ft. Clarity: 17.7 ft. Shore Length: 15.9 mi Even though there are approximately 281 cabins/ homes on Thunder Lake, it still gives you the feeling that you are “up north.” With cedar trees and boulders lining the shore in many places, it is very unique to the Brainerd area. It also contains several species that are a little harder to find in the Brainerd area, such as burbot, smallmouth bass, and lake whitefish. Walleye fingerlings are stocked in odd years and there also is evidence of strong natural reproduction in given years. The walleye numbers have been above average the past three surveys. Average length was 16.8” and 93 percent of the fish were 12” or larger.

Northern pike aren’t nearly as numerous, but when you catch one, it tends to be on the larger side. Average size was 24.9” and 64 percent of the fish were 24” or larger. Both largemouth and smallmouth bass may attract anglers as well. Panfish results were mixed. Bluegill numbers were average, but size was small, with only 17 percent measuring 7” or larger. Black crappie were caught in average numbers, with 31 percent of the fish measuring 8” or larger. Yellow perch and tullibee (cisco) are important forage species in the lake, and both populations looked healthy. Perch numbers were high for this type of lake. With an average size of 6.4”, they probably won’t offer much to fishermen. Tullibee numbers were average for this type of lake. ~L&H

MARCH / APRIL 2021 www.lakeandhomemagazine.com 137


138 Lake & Home Magazine MARCH / APRIL 2021


MARCH / APRIL 2021 www.lakeandhomemagazine.com 139


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