How did I get some of my inspiration for Nailed It? A few years ago, my family and I remodeled most of our house and our kitchen was the biggest part of that project. As someone known to swear a lot while doing crafts, I was a little worried when I took on the project of painting my cabinets. We painted, tore out a half wall that once acted as our makeshift table, and then had granite countertops installed. The results were pretty amazing if I do say so myself.
Here’s a scene that was partially inspired by a conversation *cough* argument *cough* my husband and I had over flooring in the middle of Lowe’s. I literally had the thought “Oh my gosh, I’m actually going to kill him.” LOL. After completely disagreeing on the color of wood flooring—I wanted dark, he wanted the redwood stuff (The pictures will show our compromise on that) & when I moved to carpet, thinking we’d at least agree there, he said he liked the white carpet. WHITE! I had to remind him we had kids. I showed him the flecked carpet sample I’d been looking at and told him it’d help hide the dirt and he said “That’s because it always looks dirty.” Luckily we found a compromise with some lovely carpet that’s about the color of sand. But seriously, it was touch & go for a while. And after sharing stories with friends I’ve learned that we’re not the only ones who’ve had intense discussions in the home improvement store.
I was going to kill Jackson Gamble.
The only problem was that there were way too many witnesses in the home improvement store.
“Do you even do the interiors usually?” I asked, throwing my hands up. “I thought you did mostly foundations and framing and all that other more structural stuff.”
Jackson shifted his weight forward, his voice low and tight. “I mostly do structural jobs, but I’ve done plenty of interiors, and I also happen to have eyes. You asked what I thought and I told you.”
I blew out my breath and leaned forward, too, determined not to let him think he had the upper hand. “Well, that’s because I thought you would agree with me—clearly I was delusional.”
He shrugged one shoulder. “That sounds like a you issue.”
Angry heat wound through me, and I jabbed a finger at his chest. “I…argh! You drive me crazy!”
“Right back at you, babe.”
For some reason, the babe stopped me and fired me up at the same time, and there was attraction in the mix as well, and why did he have to make me feel so many emotions at once? I was supposed to be emotionally closed off! How the hell did he always manage to break through my usually impenetrable walls?
“Can I help you?” a guy asked from behind me. He slid his thumbs along the edge of the maroon vest that signaled he worked here. “If I were you, I’d go with the sandstone tile. Hearty, hides dirt well. Very popular.”
Of course he’d come over and agree with Jackson. Two dudes in the home improvement store who figured the little lady just needed told what was good for her. “No thanks on the help,” I said through gritted teeth. “We’re doing fine.”
His eyes widened, and he slowly backed away—good choice on his part, regardless of his crappy taste in tile.
I turned to Jackson, the main target of my ire. On the bright side, I was no longer picturing him naked or thinking about the corresponding zip that’d shot up my core as he ran his hand up my thigh last night. Nope, my thoughts were all more on the strangle and maim side. “I need a minute to cool off.” I pushed my fingers against my forehead, rubbing against the oncoming headache. “I’m going to go pick out a sink, then we can circle back around to the kitchen area and disagree on everything there.”
Jackson crossed his arms, and I wished I didn’t notice that stupid sexy line in his forearms. Or the way my pulse sped up because of it. “If you want me to just nod and agree, let me know, and I’ll do that.”
“Good! That’d be great!”
The smart-ass saluted me.
Here’s the before and after of my most successful DIY project. Most of them, especially most of them involving food, don’t turn out so well.
Be sure to pick up Cindi’s newest release, Nailed It!
I’m Ivy Clarke. Bartender, best friend, and disbeliever in love.
And now I’m in over my head, trying to flip a house all by myself.
I’m not too proud to admit I need some help. Too bad the only one who can help me is the same man I want to throw out this house’s second-story window.
Jackson Gamble and I can’t be in the same room together for more than a minute without devolving into a sparring match.
Except for that one time…
But enough about that. Jackson’s looking for forever, and I don’t believe in love, remember?
Get in. Renovate. Get out. Keep my heart firmly in tact.
Because it’s much easier to fix up a house than a broken heart.
Cindi Madsen is a USA Today Bestselling author of contemporary romance and young adult novels. She sits at her computer every chance she gets, plotting revising, and falling in love with her characters. Sometimes it makes her a crazy person. Without it, she’d be even crazier. She has way too many shoes, but can always find a reason to buy a new pretty pair, especially if they’re sparkly, colorful, or super tall. She loves music, dancing, and wishes summer lasted all year long. She lives in Colorado (where summer is most definitely NOT all year long) with her husband and three children.