Big Tings A Gawn, Everyting is Irie

Two weeks ago I along with my mother, daughter, brother and his fiancee took a plain to Montego Bay, Jamaica to attend our cousin's destination wedding in Ocho Rios, Jamaica. My mother, daughter and I spent 7 days and 6 nights at the Riu Ocho Rios in a junior suite overlooking the garden and pool, Room 1023 to be exact. The last time I went to Jamaica was 11 years prior during my junior year of high school for my grandfather's funeral. He lived near Kingston which is the southeastern region of the country while Ocho Rios is around the north coast.
We took a very long bus ride approximately 1.5hours to the resort. The resort itself is the largest resort in Ochie with beautiful scenery. We had actually arrived very early around 11am but check in wasn't until 3pm. We had a little trouble checking in but the staff was very pleasant and we actually got our wrist bands to enjoy the amenities right away. So we went off to eat some lunch cause we were starving. Here are some views of the ocean that I took
Despite the check in issues and the last day (will get to it at the end), the rest of the stay was amazing. The staff were very friendly and interactive with the guests. The night shows were a bit cheesy but fun for some evening entertainment. Sometimes they got a bit raunchy but most of the time it was ok for little ones to watch. Each day the room service lady would make a towel animal like this one
For the most part with the exception of Dunn's River Falls, we stayed on the hotel site. We enjoyed traditional Jamaican cuisine such as ackee and saltfish, plantain, boiled dumplings, and liver most mornings at breakfast. At night, they had specials such as curry paella and curry pasta.

We spent many days just relaxing, sipping drinks and lounging by the smaller pool closer to our rooms or the beach.
Bob Marley drink
My daughter would spend hours if she could just stay in the sand or the pool. She had a blast.
But back to the two people who made this trip possible. I guess we could have gone on our own but I felt blessed to be able to attend my cousin G and his wife L wedding. We arrived the same day as the bride and groom and the days leading up to and day after the wedding I got to know the bride better. They are truly a match for each other and I wish them many years of happiness, they truly deserve it. The turn out was amazing at approximately 100 wedding guests which is a large group for a destination wedding. They were married on July 22 which also happens to be my dad's birthday so it made the occasion double special considering I was in the country he was born on his bday.

The happy couple
reception center piece
Will share some more of my favorite pictures tomorrow.


Week Two House Tour: 3rd Bedroom

Today we have the third bedroom. It was to be baby Noah's room but now it is pretty much the room that holds all the junk. I don't have an updated pictured of the turquoise blue painted walls with orange ceiling but they are going to change. My visions for my house have changed in the last couple of months and although I loved that color scheme then (and still do) I am going a different direction.

This room is by far the ugliest room of the house besides the basement (which will not be shown yet) with the mystery toilet in the middle of the room. I don't have many pictures of this room but it is very small and has one window and a so called closet.

As you can see the room is very dark and dated. We have brown paneling. On the floor is old musty carpeting, laminate tiles outer and vinyl tiles inner. This room is also the only one without any overhead

Smallest room in the house but definitely the ugliest. Thinking white walls, new ceiling, new sconces, and transformation into a guest room possible future baby room.


Week Two House Tour: 2nd Bedroom (Daughter K)

Today we are going to look at the before pictures of my daughter's bedroom. They actually had wallpaper on that we easily took down on day 1 after we got the keys to the house. So this is essentially a stripped room. It did however still have a nasty stink carpet.

We used to sleep in her room until our room was painted but there are the stripped wallpapered plaster walls. They are in decent shape. The ugly nasty green shag carpet.

View from door
Radiator has since been removed
Other side of room view, entrance to right and closet

I don't have any recent pictures of her room but let's just say it's a whole lot of pink walls and hot pink trim. Definitely going to tone down the room to be more reflective in the house general scheme. Thinking about a muted pink or possibly light gray with white trim.

Also want to get rid of her ceiling which is not pictured. It's squares with indentions and I would rather have it drywalled and add crown modeling later on. Also need to refinish the hardwood floors as well as the other hardwood floors in the house.


Week Two House Tour: Bathroom (After)

Today we pick up where we left off yesterday. The bathroom renovation! This picture was taken before we got central air so imagine it without the radiator.

Here is a quick reminder of the before

And here is the bathroom today with everything new. No more carpet =)
new pedestal sink, new toilet, long shelved IKEA mirror
Close up of backsplash
New jetted tub...
Got rid of door to expose open shelving. Still need to add a shelf or two
There is my new sanctuary to relax and unwind. Hope you enjoyed it. 


Week Two House Tour: Bathroom (Before)

Today is all about the bathroom renovation. This was actually the first room to get a major overhaul but we did not DIY considering the state of the bathroom. Once you see the pictures you will understand. I still pretty much lived with my mom until it was complete about a month later. This is our only full bathroom in the house, we don't even have a half bathroom, just a mystery functional disgusting toilet in the basement.

I hired a family friend who also did an amazing job on the house I grew up in which was actually owned by mom at the time. My brother now lives there with his fiancee. Today I will share the before pictures and tomorrow I will reveal the new bathroom.

The lady was a widow for quiet sometime until she died and her sister sold the house as an estate sale. This is our bathroom when we bought our house.  Very outdated, dingy cracked subway tile, disgusting tub, repulsive toilet, and just all sorts of wrong.  I will reveal the biggest gem of the bathroom in a picture below. It's not very large approximately 5 x 8.
view from entrance
The doors were a nuisance. Horrible set up.

looking from window to entrance
To the left (from the entrance) we have the lovely yellow sink. Please ignore the painting supplies. We were so eager to start on the house.

Then you have the toilet...don't know why I took a picture with the seat up...
And the cabinet above the toilet
The puke worthy tub / shower
Oh yea and the part I "miss" the most about my lovely bathroom is the carpeting. Yes, it was not a mat or rug but carpeting. Talk about gross.

Isn't that bathroom scary? Do any bathroom reno's? Dying to do one? Tomorrow we will share how the bathroom pretty much looks today.

Week One
Monday - Outside of House
Tuesday - Living Room
Wednesday - Dining Room
Thursday - Kitchen
Friday - Sunroom + Upstairs Hallway + 2 Closets

Week Two
Monday - Bathroom (Before)
Tuesday - Bathroom (After)
Wednesday - Daughter Bedroom
Thursday - Third Bedroom
Friday - Master Bedroom


Week One House Tour: Sunroom

Today, I should be attending my cousin and his fiancee's wedding on the beach. Hopefully, will take a lot of pictures. Today also would have been my dad's 52nd birthday, so Happy Birthday Day.

Wow, week one of the house tour is rounding up to a finish. Today we will briefly cover the sunroom. I have featured it a couple of times already so you can check it out here.

This is not a current photo but pretty much it is the same except the bench has been moved to the dining room. So I need a couch or bench. This room is in dire need of help! This will be my primary focus in the next couple of months. It is after all the entrance of our house.

I have found a great tutorial for flooring I wish to try out as well as update the furniture in there and find more pieces to fill out the room. I am really anxious, excited, nervous to tackle this room when I come back home.

Be sure to follow along next week to see 2nd floor of the house.


Week One House Tour: Kitchen

Today we will be sharing our kitchen. Believe it or not but this was the most up to date room in the house. Oh yea, the windows were also pretty up to date as well. But back to the kitchen, the stove and refrigerator are ancient.

warning: I took the following pictures at two different times although not much has really changed except for the addition of a dishwasher.

We plan to have open shelve cabinets and paint them (probably white). And change out the cheap blue counter top with an affordable alternative. I like the butcher block but it's not practical near the sink.

The stove is separate from the main part of the kitchen. We hope to get rid of the cabinets to the left and open up the wall. The room doesn't receive much sunlight as is and I would like to be able to talk to guests as we entertain.
View from the stove. To the left is the door to the basement. Behind that wall is the closet for the living room on the left and in the middle is a little spot I would like to make as a pantry for the extra cabinet space I will be losing once we open up the kitchen.
And this is our small and cozy kitchen.


Week One House Tour: Dining Room

Today we will have before and in progress (or after) pictures of the dining room. For the year and a half, we didn't really use the dining room. We have been through three different tables and the last one is a keeper.

Here is how the living room looked when we first moved in

And here it is today

Actually it's been updated since these photos. I moved the cabinets around the buffet and moved the bench from the left corner to the opposite side of the room where the cabinets were.

This room is still in need of a lot work. For one, flooring has to go. Then we need to sheetrock the room since  those wallpaper panels are still attached to the crumbling plaster behind it. Also need some window treatments and to get the vents covered. Probably the most important is to refinish the table and chairs.

Tomorrow we feature the kitchen.
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