Behind the Build: Our Mudroom Plan

Jenna Kutcher 

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September 22, 2022


Another month and a few exciting updates happening at our build! Building a house is such an interesting process that includes a lot of “hurry up and wait.” We were up north for the final few weeks of summer and so we were excited to get back and check in on the progress. There were a few big things that happened while we were out of town (and we kind of knew what was happening, thanks to our trail cams that are on the property!) I swear, driving down the long driveway feels so magical to me — I don’t think it’s hit me yet that we are going to actually move in and live there in a few short months.

We sold our house:

First things first, we sold our current home! Honestly, it’s been an incredible process and super smooth, working with the buyers. I feel wildly thankful because while we are closing in the next week, we are renting the house from them for the remainder of the year while our build is finished. This was honestly our biggest hope and has been such a relief for us! While we had a few back up options and ideas if we weren’t able to rent back, this has given us massive peace of mind with the transition and has helped keep things stable and normal for us and the girls. We’ve been through the buying and selling process of homes before and there’s just something awesome when it feels like teamwork to help everyone out. I’m so grateful for our buyers and so excited for them to live in this house that has so many memories and incredible neighbors! I thought it would feel more bittersweet but the excitement of the build has us feeling grounded and ready. I’m sure I’ll cry a few tears when we move out, since this was the house where a lot of dreams came true for us!

What’s happened at the house build:

  • We’re insulated: We did a mix of spray foam and the blanket kind! Since we have such frozen winters, we wanted to ensure the house was insulated well. We also did extra insulation for my office to help with any noises for recording! Insulating only took a day or two for the whole house!
  • Drywall was installed: If I have to pick a favorite day of doing a site visit, it was the day when we were shocked that they drywalled the entire house in just a few days. (We have theeee best crews!) We went in anticipating a room or two being done and we walked the whole house with our jaws to the floor! That was so trasnformative and just so exciting!
  • Landscaping confirmed: A lot of this will likely not happen until the spring (based on timing and the temp of the ground) but we had to make some decisions on our landscaping and the vision of the patios and retaining walls for one side of the house! We’re going to pour concrete just so we can enjoy the back patio right away and then eventually add pavers back there!
  • Metal roofs added: We have a few accent roofs (I’m sure there is a better way to describe this and I’m definitely proving I’m not a designer right now!) over the garage and the front porch where we opted for black metal roofing which has been installed (and looks GREAT!)
  • Added an area for a cold plunge: We added this in (a little last minute but at a good time in terms of making changes!) We had already planned for a sauna in our basement and so adding a cold plunge next to it seemed like a brilliant idea! We also saw the founder’s pitch on Shark Tank and just fell in love with them. Now we can do fire and ice training right at home, totally pumped!

What’s next on the plans:

  • The exterior stucco: We’re so excited to see the exterior come to life! We opted for stucco, something we both love! And while it’s gorgeous, it’s definitely a process (an extensive one at that!) We’re waiting for our excavator to grade the land so that they can the get set up around the house so they can set up scaffolding for the multi-step stucco process! It’ll so be worth it!
  • Tiling will start in a few weeks: Our tile is starting to arrive and it is oh-so gorgeous! We chose a ton of Fireclay Tile and I am just obssessed with the tones and variability of the handmade tiles that make design come to life. I can’t wait to see how tile transforms the spaces.
  • Mudding and taping the drywall: Honestly in awe of the crew’s who do this work (seriously, it’s an art form!) This is happening now throughout the house and is a necessary step before we start installing anything else. So excited to see the finished walls — words I never thought I’d say.

Image 1 Source | Image 2 Source / Image 3 Source / Moodboard Source

Our Mudroom Interior Inspiration:

Okay, this room feels SO exciting to me! We currently do not have a mudroom and we drop our shoes and backpacks in our mechanical room that connects the garage and laundry room (I also hide my packages in clothes baskets, so there’s that!) Regardless, having a mudroom feels like a dream come true. This space will be right off of our garage which we’ll probably use to enter the house 99% of the time. We’re doing a locker for each of us for storage (they even have USB chargers and an outlet in each one… brilliant!) We also are having a big drop desk for all mail and packages and storage for things that are in transition so we have a place for incoming mail!

There will also be a big built-in bench under the window and a large walk-in closet for coats! We’re so excited for all of the storage and all of the built-ins! I also love, love, love the soft olive color we went with on the lockers and the darker gray floors (we were going to go slate, but with the salt and snow of Minnesota, opted for something a little easier to clean!)

My Must-Have Deep Cleaning Products

Speaking of cleaning, I wanted to share one of my FAVORITE (like for years, fave!) when it comes to cleaning products. You probably already know that my husband, Drew, is a neat freak. I swear, he is already itching to get the shop vac in the build to get all the constuction debris and the all purpose cleaner to wipe alllll the surfaces. Years ago when we were looking for better products with better-for-you ingredients, we switched to Branch Basics. If you’re curious, they are fragrance-free, plant and mineral based, free of harmful preservatives, biodegradable, non-GMO, gluten and tree nut free, and not tested on animals. I mean… that covers it, right? 

What I love is that it’s a concentrate based cleaner, so you just need one bottle of concentrate and then you mix it with water and you’ve got a cleaning solution that can clean floors, countertops, even your produce and your hands (it’s that clean!) I love that it basically replaced a ton of the toxic-ridden chemical cleaners that we had been using and simplified the solution. When we were choosing finishes for our home, we chose easy-to-clean finishes but we also knew we’d have our superpower in Branch Basics to back us up. I am honestly already daydreaming about cleaning the kitchen countertops and being in that space with all of the windows and my fam.


Ready to clean up your cleaning products (for LESS)?

Use the code ‘JENNAKUTCHER’ at checkout to save 15% off all Branch Basics Starter Kits!

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A small town Minnesota photographer, podcaster, educator and puppy rescuer, my happiest days are spent behind my computer screen sharing my secrets with the world. I'm glad you're here.

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