Doesn’t everyone read multiple books at one time? I can’t be the only one! These are just the books (and magazine) I’m currently in the middle of reading. And yes, I am one of those who reads the end of books so I already know the ending for these. I blame my short attention span …

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I really want to take the time to read more and watch TV less. Especially since we’re on a break from Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, iZombie, and all the mindless entertainment I so enjoy. And thanks to Tucker, I’ve been spending more time at home so I definitely need to take advantage of this prime reading opportunity.

  • The Pick Up” by Nadine Gordimer. My dad gave me this one. He received the book from his college’s alumni group, I think, because they required all freshmen to read the book. Or maybe because the author is an alumni as well? The book is written from a unique perspective, which makes me read a bit slower than normal. But the premise is interesting and I’m enjoying following the character’s through their situation. South Africa is definitely a new location for me!
  • Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter” by Tom Franklin. I started this book a few years ago for book club and am just now coming back to it. I skimmed it last time so I’m curious to see how much I remember.
  • The Weekenders” by Mary Kay Andrews. An easy-going beach read, or in my case, pool read. Always fun!
  • House Beautiful.” I usually have at least one design mag lying around. With everything that needs to be done in our house, I’m constantly looking for design inspiration!

In case you think I might be bored when I finish these books, here’s the stack of books I need to read next. Just a few more from my dad! Any more suggestions I need to check out?

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What I’m reading

We were gifted a watermelon … actually two watermelons … so it’s been all sorts of watermelon fun in this house. We’ve had spicy watermelon margaritas, watermelon turmeric smoothies, plain ole watermelon slices, you name it. And yes, I totally carried a watermelon and did not have the fabulous adventure of falling in love and dancing with Patrick Swayze in the Adirondacks. Sad. But I digress.

It’s a bit hot here in Louisville so I think Brian had an icy cool beverage on his mind when creating our delicious libation of the summer. This watermelon mojito is  refreshing and completely lacking in any rum flavor. I promise, there is booze in it! Enjoy.

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Watermelon Mojito Recipe

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups watermelon chunks, seeded
  • 15 – 20 mint leaves
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 4 ounces rum
  • Sparkling water
  • Lime slices (optional)
  • Mint sprigs (optional)

Preparation:

  1. Combine the watermelon, lime juice and mint in the blender. Puree until smooth, around one minute.
  2. If you’d like to remove the pulp, you can pour the mixture through a fine mesh strainer.
  3. Fill two pint glasses with ice and pour from blender. Add the rum.
  4. Top with a splash of sparkling water and stir. Garnish with a mint sprig and lime slice.

Summer 2016 Cocktail

And a faucet! But don’t try to actually wash dishes or pour yourself a glass of water … there is no working plumbing yet (or really any plumbing at all). Minor details, I know.

So pretty! And it almost looks functional. What you can't see on the floor is the sink box we left so Meisha can climb up and look out the window. Classy, I know.

So pretty! And it almost looks functional. What you can’t see on the floor is the sink box we left so Meisha can climb up and look out the window. Classy, I know.

Brian’s goal on Saturday was to install the sink and mission accomplished. Drinks were had to celebrate! We walked down to La Chasse here in Louisville, we highly recommend if you haven’t tasted their deliciousness yet. But I digress.

First Brian measured and cut out the hole in the island countertop for the sink. Then we test fit the sink, which meant we both had to lift that heavy fricking sink from the floor up to the counter, into the sink space, and then back to the floor. Workout for the day accomplished.

It was sad to see much countertop we lose so the sink can be installed in the island. But there’s still so much more useful space than we have in the current kitchen.

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Brian also sanded the island countertops, gave them a first coat of sealant, installed braces so we can have a disco dance party on the island if we’d like (probably not the best idea we’ve ever had) and installed the sweet new faucet. Going with the mixed metal trend again, it’s a simple black finish.

So exciting to see more progress, can’t wait to finally use this awesome space!

 

 

We have a sink!

Thanks to my amazing friends and family, I had a second wonderful bridal shower and bachelorette evening in Florida last weekend. After snow in Louisville earlier in the week, the Florida warmth and sunshine was greatly appreciated.

My four Robison aunts hosted the shower for me and we had a blast. Mimosas, sushi, wine, delicious snacks, brownies – they know me so well!

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Thanks to my fabulous aunts – Francie, Anne, Sharon and Shani!

In addition to the bridal shower, we also managed to fit into the weekend:

    • Wedding dress fittings for me, two bridesmaids and two flower girls ( I know you’re going to surprised to hear my dress had to be shortened).

Wedding dress shopping for my mom – yay, she found a dress that she really likes!

  • We went to see the wedding band play at a beach bar. They are so great! No one in the family has any rhythm but we’ll definitely be dancing anyway. #NoFilter
  • Girls night/2nd bachelorette party
  • Visits to the rehearsal dinner and reception venues
  • Wedding hair test. I had the fanciest updo on the plane ride home!
  • Multiple beach trips
  • A cousin’s 10th birthday dinner
  • Wine consumption on National Drink Wine Day. My favorite holiday!

Less than six weeks to the wedding! Slightly panicking but we will get it all done. Somehow 🙂 We have nothing planned this weekend so maybe some kitchen updates? We will see …

Pre-wedding weekend part 2

It’s been pretty quiet here on the #RedneckRosewood remodel front. More wedding activities, less renovation efforts. (Only 55 days left but who is counting?!) We have made a few updates to the guest room recently, though …

We’ve been looking for a metal bed frame for the guest room. Possibly vintage, maybe cottage-like, but nothing really met our style or price needs. As in cheap! While out running some work errands, Brian found a full-size brass headboard and footboard. For less than $100! After a few Snapchats, our new headboard came home with him. It needs to be stripped so the finish is less shiny and more antiqued. But it works for now.

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Since no guest room is complete without a mirror, we used one of our move-in coupons from West Elm and purchased this beauty.

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As with every single part of our house, there is still lots to be done in here. Another lamp, some more art on the walls, maybe a few plants … on the endless house to do list. But at least when people visit, they have a comfy bed to sleep in and a mirror to put on make-up.

Next weekend I am heading to Florida with my soon-to-be mother-in-law for my second bridal shower and bachelorette party with my side of the family. Can’t wait! Maybe while I’m away, Brian will do some work on the new kitchen?

Minor guest room changes

Here’s a quick recap on my first bridal shower and bachelorette party, which was held here in Louisville the last weekend of January. I know, I know, I’m a bit delayed … but having this much fun is exhausting and I am kinda old.

Honestly, I have the best friends, family and soon-to-be family anyone could ask for. My mom flew in from Florida and four of my bridesmaids flew in (or drove) from New York, Florida, L.A., and Memphis. It was a whirlwind weekend of laughter, girl time, wine, wedding details, delicious food, presents, mimosas … my only regret is the weekend wasn’t long enough!

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Brian’s cousin Roxanne hosted a wonderful bridal shower for me (really for us, but he was at home cleaning up the mess I left in the kitchen and dining room) on Saturday afternoon. Everyone was so generous and thoughtful with all of their gifts, I felt so loved. And all of the helpful date night suggestions from the family will be put to good use!

Following the shower, we dropped off my mom and all the gifts at home with Brian and the rest of us girls headed to a friends’ family cabin for the bachelorette party. There might have been some inappropriate decorations and some alcohol … but what happens at the cabin stays at the cabin and that’s all I’m going to say 🙂

In addition to organizing the party and cooking fabulous food, my friend Amanda also created the best bachelorette party game ever – HOT MEN BINGO!

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Thanks to everyone for traveling to Louisville, hosting and planning amazing events, and most importantly, celebrating this exciting time with Brian and me. Looking forward to another fun wedding weekend in Florida shortly!

 

 

 

Wedding weekend fun – part 1

Sometimes the little things really do make me the happiest. For example, these brushed brass knobs and handles Brian installed on our kitchen cabinets today. Oh my goodness, I love them!

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We are definitely going with the mixed metal trend in the kitchen. We have stainless steel appliances, brushed brass hardware, copper lighting fixtures, and wait until you see the faucet!

Want to take a closer look? Ooh yeah baby!

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This upcoming week and weekend are going to be jam-packed with fun, non house-related activities. Family and friends are coming into Louisville from across the country for the first bridal shower and then my bachelorette party. Bring on the fun (and probably some wine!).

Shiny pretties

I’m ignoring the snow that’s falling outside right now. Yes, I know it’s winter and snow does happen occasionally. But I don’t have to like it. Bring on spring, please! To distract myself from the fluffy white snowflakes, I thought I would share a quick update on the kitchen progress.

A new rug makes everything better

A new rug makes everything better

The kitchen is all cleaned up and ready for our first cooking evening with friends. While the cooktop isn’t hooked up yet, both the Advantium and the wall oven are so we can use both kitchens to make culinary magic. And all this counterspace for prepping is just heavenly! Someday I will share a photo of the tiny, cramped kitchen we are currently using – it’s so awkward and difficult to coordinate with two people trying to cook. Four people would never work.

During the week, Brian installed the island and its’ countertop (and put together our so fancy IKEA stools). Next on his list is installing the cooktop and the back countertop, then plumbing for the sink and dishwasher in the island. Moving along!

So far both Tucker and Gizmo approve of the new rug … their feedback is critical. Here are some more photos Brian took (pre-clean up) so you can see the full progress.

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More kitchen progress …

I know, there’s been a bit of silence here .. hey, it was the holidays and we were busy eating, relaxing, drinking, reading, more eating, hanging out with friends (aka more drinking), hiking, and sunning on the beach. But we’re back with a progress update today!

Brian managed to get the kitchen space finished enough for us to use it when we hosted his family on Thanksgiving. Seems like such a long time ago! He installed both the Advantium and wall oven in time for us to cook all day. We used the counterspace to hold all of the main dishes and sides, since the cooktop was not installed. Without the island in place yet, we could even put two tables for guests in the space. Not sure what we will do the next time we host almost 20 people for a holiday … maybe keep our fingers crossed it’s warm enough for people to sit on the deck?

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Today Brian measured out where the island’s final resting place will be. The island will contain the sink and dishwasher on one side, and have an over-hang on the other side for two stools so people can hang out in the kitchen while we work our cooking magic. We wanted to make sure there was enough maneuvering space for one person washing dishes in the sink and one person cooking on the cooktop (basically back-to-back).  The other important consideration is to make sure there is a clear path from the back door past the island into the dining room. If you’ve been lucky enough to see Tucker make his speedy out of control dash through the new kitchen from outside, you’ll understand our concern. Trust me, Tucker needs to work on his braking ability sometimes.

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Did you see the sneak peek on the island of the next step? Yup, lighting! Once Brian knew where the island would be placed, he moved it out of the way so he could work on today’s main attraction – the island lighting. We bought two pendants from Dot & Bo months ago and love, love, love them. They have been spending quality time on the third floor waiting for their time to shine. Today Brian took down the f’ugly ceiling fan (seriously, there’s no better word I could use to describe it) and installed the electrical for our new lights.  Our pretty pendants aren’t installed yet but at least we have lightbulbs so we don’t stumble in the dark when we wander through to let Tucker out in the morning.

Please excuse the dog and cat fur and random dust balls in the new kitchen. Remember, it’s a work in progress!

It’s island time – and a kitchen progress update

Last weekend was BIG for Redneck Rosewood! On Friday, we drove up to IKEA outside of Cincinnati to purchase the butcherblock countertops we need for the kitchen remodel. And of course, we had to pick up just a few more items. It’s IKEA after all, that store is completely designed to encourage impulse shopping.

Our IKEA haul. Thank goodness for Brian's work truck!

Our IKEA haul. Thank goodness for Brian’s work truck!

In addition to the countertops, we also bought a bookshelf to use as a pantry for both temporary storage during the remodel and once the new kitchen is finished. Eventually we will get something a bit more functional or a statement piece (or Brian could build something), but that is was far down on the priority list. And trust me, there is no way my compulsive neatness could have handled spices, condiments and other pantry staples covering every surface in the dining room. We needed storage! So I had fun (or whatever you call it) putting together IKEA furniture and organizing. We have enough groceries for a family of five. It’s seriously ridiculous!

Pantry (and the overflow cart)! We will make the doors opaque at some point - contact paper or something. Not high on the priority list either right now.

Pantry (and the overflow cart)! We will make the doors opaque at some point – contact paper or something. Not high on the priority list either right now.

But while I was in the throes of organizational chaos, Brian was having even more fun installing the wood floor in the new kitchen.  It took him all weekend, with some breaks for food, sleep and a viewing of Star Wars (have to get prepared to watch the new movie December 18!).

Ta da, the beautiful new wood floor in the kitchen! All thanks to Brian.

Ta da, the beautiful new wood floor in the kitchen! All thanks to Brian.

While this weekend may be Halloween, our plans will be a bit less spooky and a bit more paint-covered. Anyone want to bring a paintbrush over to help us paint the kitchen?

 

Last weekend