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MARCH 2015 W W W. C A BI N L I F E . C O M

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71896 46752 VOL. 13 NO. 2

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OLD TIME CHARM

BLACK MAGIC

IDEAS TO INSPIRE

RENOVATION TIPS

ONE COUPLE FINDS JOY IN ANTIQUING THEIR CABIN

CHARCOAL BARBEQUING IS MAKING A COMEBACK.

WHAT AN ARCHITECT CAN DO FOR YOU

BEFORE & AF TER: A COT TAGE REDO


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GO confidently in the direction of your dreams.

LIVE the life you have imagined.

{ HENRY DAVID THOREAU }

CABIN LIFE | March 2014

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EXPERIENCE MORE

SUBSCRIBING GETS YOU A LOT MORE THAN JUST THE MAGAZINE. RELEVANTmagazine.com/more


MARCH 2015 C OV E R S T O R Y OLD TIME CHARM One couple finds joy in antiquing their cabin.

FEATURES BLACK MAGIC { 20 } Charcoal makes a comeback; As convenient as gas grilling is, there’s no substitute.

IDEAS TO INSPIRE { 24 } What a professional designer can provide when building, renovating or adding on

RENOVATION TIPS { 36 } Before & after: A cottage redo. Discover 23 products for renovating your cabin.

GONE CYCLING { 44 } How to choose the right bike for you, your guests, and your cabin terrain

HELPING WILDLIFE { 56 } When an animal is in danger, know what to look for and risks with getting involved.

CABIN LIFE | March 2015

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D E PA R T M E N T S

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EDITOR’S NOTE FROM THE DECK

News • Products • Tips • Reader Mail Wildlife • Book Reviews

MY CABIN

- A Quiet Hideaway in the Woods - A Welcoming Lakeside Cabin with a View

NOW & THEN

Do-It-Yourself Pathway

PETS AT THE CABIN

Should your dog drink from the lake?

PHOTO ALBUM Cabin Candids

Q&A

Protect your wood floors during renovation.

Get a full year’s worth of Cabin Life cabinlife.com/subscribe

FLOOR PLAN

Dreams on paper

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Didn’t catch last month’s issue? See select stories at cabinlife.com/magazine


H O W FA R WIL L YO U G O ? THE PASSION FOR CABINS, COTTAGES, LAKEHOMES, & CAMPS STRETCHES FAR AND WIDE

Where’s your place? It’s one of the most common questions that we cabiners ask each other. And reading between the lines, we’re also curious to find out: How far do you commute from your primary home to your retreat? Over the past 12 years, I’ve heard answers on both extremes. I’ve interviewed people who travel only 30 miles. (Be still, my jealous heart). They think nothing of making the 45-minute drive on a summer evening so they can waterski or canoe on their lake, hike or bike on their trails, or just watch the sunset from their deck. But then, I also interviewed a couple who commuted from their home in San Diego, California, to their cottage on Michigan’s Lake Charlevoix. How in love with your cabin do you have to be to travel more than 2,400 miles, about 35 hours by car? Crazy in love.

Most of us understand that kind of passion, don’t we? Our passion for cabin living and the rewards that it gives us reconnection with friends, family, nature and with the best parts of ourselves - can make us do crazy things. The cabin commute is just one of those crazy things. The list may go on and on to digging an outhouse hole on a hot summer day, unclogging drain tile during a rainstrom, evicting hordes of bats, de-skunking a dog. My list includes those things, and your list probably gets even more interesting than that!

Your Cabin Life editors stretch far and wide to capture cabin stories. In this issue, for example, you’ll read about cabins in Georgia (p. 10), Virginia (p. 18), and Ontario (p. 20). We’d love to hear about your cabin and your passion for cabin living! Email us at editor@cabinlife.com.

SEAN J O N ES EDITOR IN CHIEF

EDITORIAL OFFICES: Editor, Cabin Life , P.O. Box 1612, Waukesha, WI 53187, CUSTOMER SERVICES: Cabin Life Magazine, 21027 Crossroads Circle, P.O. Box 1612, Waukesha, WI 53187-1612; 1-800-533-6644, customer sevice online 24 hours a day at www.cabinlife.com or email: customerservice@kalmbach.com

CABIN LIFE | March 2015

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O NE C O UP L E FIND S J OY IN A N T IQ UIN G T HEIR C A BIN BY CHRIST Y HEITGER

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re you a “junkie?” I’m not referring to a sports, chocolate, or television enthusiast. I’m talking about the addicted antique junkie who lives to snoop out and snatch up new (well, old) “junk” that will fit seamlessly into their cottage décor. Kris Walseth is one such self-proclaimed junkie who has no plans to seek therapy for her addiction because to her, searching for antiques is therapy.

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CABIN LIFE | March 2014

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SCOUT GADGETS BELOW In a room decorated with boy scout antiques, this compass, dart collection, and pocket knife adds character.

TAKING THE OLD AND KEEPING IT OLD Purchased in 2001, Kris and Dan Walseth gutted their 60-year-old, 600-square-foot cabin in order to winterize it. When they gutted it, they saved and reused the original pine board paneling to give the place an “olden” feel. They also used reclaimed timber on the ceiling and floor, and outfitted the entire place with old door hardware, light switch plates, kitchen cabinetry, light fixtures, lamp shades, wall sconces, book cases, table lamps, and furniture. Why all the fuss? It’s pretty simple. We didn’t want our cabin to look like a suburban home, says Kris. “There’s much more charm and character in a place that looks old.”

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“ANTIQUING THE CABIN HAS MADE IT SO COZY AND INVITING; JUST THE WAY A CABIN SHOULD BE.”


PE NNANT F L A G S TOP LEFT A collection

EC LEC TIC B O O K S BOTTOM LEFT This group

POSTCARD PILLAR RIGHT This spinning

of pennant flags is scattered and hung

of aged books is flanked by an assortment

tower holds a collection of postcards for

throughout this eclectic cabin.

of collectables like minature canoes.

beautiful vaction spots from Georgia to Texas.

WHAT TO BUY…AND WHERE TO PUT IT Kris gathers ideas from all sorts of places – the Internet, antique stores, architectural salvage shops, magazines. Then she comes home and collaborates with her fabulous carpenter, Rick, who installs everything from doorknobs and drawer pulls to bookshelves and wall sconces. The inspiration for her red and green living room wall came from stepping inside a little Scandinavian shop. There she spotted a unique red, green and gold hutch. Mesmerized by the striking color pattern, she decided to incorporate that same color scheme into her cabin. So she worked with Rick and together they came up with the idea of hanging the hutch on the wall and then building shelving all around it that

reaches up to the ceiling. This addition added both charm and functionality to the room. Kris insists that antiquing is not about acquiring old stuff. Rather, it’s about using décor to set a desired tone or feeling. “Not everything in my cabin needs to be ancient,” says Kris. “If I see something I like and it fits with the feel that I’m going for, then I bring it home.” Sometimes Kris will buy now and think later about what to do with her purchase. For instance, she came across a beautiful piece of intricately carved wooden trim. She didn’t know where she’d put it at first, but a few days later inspiration struck and she realized it would look great on the side of one of the bunk beds.

CABIN LIFE | March 2015

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WESTERN GEAR

LEFT The western-decorated

room houses this saddle and boots to create a real sense of environment.

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ARROW ASSORTMENT

TOP LEFT These colorful arrows are a unique antique that brings a pop of color to the cabin.

INDIAN JOURNALS

TOP RIGHT A collection of journals and books sit aside a tall lamp with a Native American Indian base.

FISHERMAN FIREPL ACE

BOTTOM This cluster of fishing poles sits on the fireplace beside an American flag and metal tackle box.

A PERSONAL TREASURE TROVE In the end, perhaps the greatest treasures are not the treasures themselves, but rather the memories that go along with how each unique antique was acquired. For the Walseths, there are many such pieces. For instance, there’s the 70-year-old chair that came from Kris’ best friend’s parents. And the dining chairs that Kris’ folks purchased as newlyweds over 60 years ago. And the cool tortoise shell doorknob that came from an antique shop in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. But by far, the most popular conversation starter at the Walseth cabin is the trumpet table lamp – made out of the 75-year-old coronet that once belonged to Dan’s father.

“I love that it was made into a usable piece of furniture and is displayed in our living room rather than sitting in a case where it wouldn’t see the light of day – no pun intended,” says Kris. This antique junkie loves her hobby and it shows. “Antiquing the cabin has made it so cozy and inviting,” says Kris. “Just the way a cabin should be.” Frequent contributor Christy Heitger doesn’t purposefully collect antiques; she just doesn’t clean out her closets as often as she should.

CABIN LIFE | March 2015

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C H A R C O A L B A RBEQ UIN G IS M A KIN G A C O MEB A CK BY LISA READIE MAYER

As convenient as gas grilling is, there’s no substitute for the aromas, involvement, flavor and nostalgia that grilling over charcoal brings. Those pillow-shaped briquettes you cooked over years ago, are still the most common and least expensive type of charcoal fuel available today. These uniform, compressed briquettes are made from charred hardwoods, and various fillers and binders to hold them together. They burn evenly, but the quality can vary greatly, so look for a high content of charred hardwood. Briquettes can be lit with lighter fluid, solid lighter cubes, electric charcoal starters or chimney starters. In addition to this old standard, there is a whole new range of cooking fuels worth checking out. Here are a few different examples:

INSTANT-LIGHTING BRIQUETTES Instant-lighting briquettes are traditional charcoal briquettes that have been pre-treated with lighter fluid. They can be lit with a match and are convenient, quick and reliable. They are more expensive than regular charcoal, but do save time, effort and mess.

LIGHT-THE-BAG CHARCOAL A pre-measured amount of instant-lighting briquettes – just enough for one cookout – is sealed inside a special paper bag. The entire, unopened bag is placed in the base of the grill and its corners are lit with a match. Premium priced for the great convenience it offers, this product is ideal for camping, tailgating, or even backyard chefs who don’t want to get their hands dirty.

CHARCOAL PS GRILLIN’ TI PILE COALS IN A PYRAMID SHAPE, LIGHT THEM, AND LET BURN FOR 20 MINUTES BEFORE COOKING. AFTERWARDS, SPREAD COALS OUT FOR AN EVEN BASE. FOR NON INSTANT-LIGHTING COALS, SOAK THEM WITH ABOUT 1/2 CUP OF LIGHTER FLUID. WAIT A FEW MINUTES FOR THE FLUID TO SOAK IN BEFORE LIGHTING. AFTER PREHEATING, USE A LONGHANDLED WIRE GRILL BRUSH TO RID GRILL RACK OF PREVIOUSY COOKED FOOD DEBRIS. KEEP A SPRAY WATER BOTTLE HANDY. . . JUST IN CASE OF FLAREUPS, WHICH CAN BURN YOUR FOOD.

CABIN LIFE | March 2015

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NATURAL HARDWOOD LUMP CHARCOAL

WOOD CHIPS

The fastest growing type of charcoal, natural hardwood lump charcoal consists of chunks of pure hardwood that have been charred in a kiln. Lump charcoals are all natural, with no petroleum or other additives included. Not uniform like briquettes, natural lump charcoal comes in jagged, irregular-shaped pieces. These charcoal chunks burn hotter than traditional briquettes and they generate less ash, so clean-up is minimal. They light easily with newspaper in a chimney starter or with solid lighter cubes, and manufacturers are beginning to offer instant-lighting lump charcoal coated with paraffin wax rather than petroleum. Pricier than regular briquettes, fans say they’re worth it for the pure smoke flavor they impart.

Wood chips are also used to add a boost of wood smoke flavor to a charcoal or gas barbeque. Not a primary fuel, they are presoaked first and generally used a handful at a time. Chips are available in a multitude of flavors, including apple, cherry, pecan, oak, hickory, mesquite, orangewood, grapevine, wine barrel staves, whiskey barrel chips and more.

COOKING WOOD CHUNKS These chunks of dried hardwoods, approximately twoinches square, are pure wood in its natural state. Wood chunks are used most often in smokers, but are really catching on for grills, too, where they’re used as a flavor-enhancer in addition to charcoal or gas. Remember, a little goes a long way. Too much wood smoke can cause a bitter taste in food. Mesquite and hickory are the most popular varieties.

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O N S ’ E R E “TH SUBSTITUTE G N I L L I R G R O F . ” L A O C R A H C OVER


K I C K I N ’ B U R G E R S TOP LEFT & RIGHT

A S H B R I Q U E T T E S ABOVE After being

Juicy, jalapeno burgers sizzle over

soaked in lighter fluid, and allowed to

charcoal, and are served with red onion,

burn for 20 minutes, these coals are

iceburg lettuce, and pepperjack cheese.

perfectly prepared for charcoal grilling.

CABIN LIFE | March 2015

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