Wednesday, September 30, 2015

day 2 - part 2

Hi - Back to catch you up on the rest of day 2

Here is where we left off - tub and walls out and sub-floor in. And Hero working like a crazy to get the tub and shower up and running before we go to bed.

We had a heck of a time finding a tub that would fit into this tiny spot that did not cost a million dollars. Hero found this one from Menards:

We wanted to go with something that had very little chance of water leakage. And something that was very easy to clean and maintain. And inexpensive. And we could put it in ourselves.

And of course we wanted it white.

And this fit the bill perfectly.

Hero put took that tub in and out about 24 times to make sure where it would sit and that the drain would line up. He also measured at least 13 times to cut the hole for the faucet. 

Cutting holes in brand new tubs is not an easy thing to do.

But he drilled the hole and put that sucker in one last time.

Oh, and the water lines are in, too. And the drain pipes. And the insulation.

Next up, the walls.

Let me just take a second here to tell you how stinkin' excited we both are about this new set up. No grout to clean. It's white. No wonky soap dish that may or may not be harboring nasty bacteria. It's not blue. It's fresh and clean.

We are so excited. Super excited. 

Doesn't it look this thing is not going to fit in this space? Yeah, it looked that way to us, too. 

At this point is was about 10:30pm.

We didn't make it, darn it all.

Hero took himself to the gym to take a shower and then we dropped into bed after about a million hours working that day.

(Day 3 - part 1)

The next morning Hero popped this thing in and out about 24 times, also, to make sure how it would fit onto the tub and measured where the handles would line up 13 times. 

More holes to drill in brand new things.

And before we knew it, it was done.

Wait, what?

The wall part just clicks right on once you have sweated through prepping it. Pop in a few screws, turn on the water and we were in (sort of) business.

Liam was able to take a shower before he went to work that afternoon.

Oh, yeah.
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Tuesday, September 22, 2015

day 2 - part 1

Day two was very full. 

Hero was up at the crack of dawn and worked until about 9:30 that night. It would take you that long to read this if I didn't break it up.

Remember I showed you the whole reason for this renovation moving to the top of the list?

This soap dish that was letting loose from the wall that should never have let go, the way this bathroom was built like a tank. 

Probably some kid stood on it at some point in the last 60 years. I know I used to do that when I was a kid.

Hero popped that thing off like nobody's business.

Oh boy.

This is what was lurking back behind there. Yuck.

That blue tile, so innocent looking, was covering this up. 

Once Hero got all the tile down, we could really see the extent of this nastiness.

Holy Cow. So gross.

Fortunately, the mold from the water damage was mostly limited to the drywall. Once that was removed, and we got a good look at what was back behind that, there really was minimal mold.

Good thing.

This all happened while I was gone for a few hours. Once Hero gets going on something, it is pretty hard to slow him down.

Um, That thing weighs about a million pounds.

Hero had it strapped to the dolly and out the door before I got home. He later hauled it off to the scrap yard and got eight bucks for this bad boy. 

Better than paying to dump it.

What a stinkin' mess back there. All that 60 year old insulation and yuck got sucked up and things looked soooo much better. 

This little strip of tile was all that was left of the blue after that tub was out. We joked about leaving it as a shrine to the bathroom that was (since it was in pretty good shape), but then we popped those off the wall in about 3 minutes.

We installed new insulation (after treating the mold) and a new sub-floor. Next up we start adding things back in.
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Thursday, September 17, 2015

bathroom day one

Hi there - Happy Back to School!

Boy have we been busy.

It has been a crazy last few weeks since I last checked in (and showed off the non-blue wall in our bathroom). Here is the update on that room:

While waiting on Hero, I got busy with the planks Hero had cut at Lowe's. Did you know Lowe's will cut any wood you purchase there? It is free for the first 5 cuts, and 25 cents each after that. So worth it.

Did I tell you what we are going to do with these planks? (Remember we used planks for our kitchen floor.) This time around we are going to use them on the walls!

Here they are stacked up in the garage ready to go.

That is our toilet back there. I'll give you one guess as to what color it is :)

I primed these before we brought them in the house. Even though there are primers that are labeled "interior", you have to have a ton of ventilation using it. (We learned that the hard way - what a stink it makes.) Outside is a ton of ventilation.

And drying. 

I just love our Sesame Street paint sheets. These are from when our boys were little. So many memories of snuggling with books, toys and blankets with those little ones. Now it's great to paint every now and then and go down memory lane.

Hero had waited long enough to get going on this project and as soon as he got home we got right to work. The plan was something like this:

Day One after work - prep the planks, rip out walls, floor, vanity and toilet.

Day Two (Hero had the day off) - rip out tub and shower walls and install the new ones.

Day Three - install walls, floor, vanity and toilet.

Day Four (Which happened to be a Sunday) - take a break. (We love the Sabbath - What a great blessing it has been in our lives to obey this commandment. Sometimes it may seem counterproductive, but we have always had faith that when we give the Lord His day, all the rest of the days go much better.)

Day Five and Six (a few more days off) - finish up with lights, mirror, trim, etc.

So this is what Day One looked like at our house:

The walls under the tile had a double layer of drywall. Hero was able to salvage the first layer and not have to replace it. It's the little things that make projects go better, right?

See Hero sitting down, looking like he is doing something with the water lines? You will note from above, that fiddling with the water lines is not on the Day One plan.

Change in plans - A water line got nicked. 


Add to Day One: Turned off the water to the house, run to Lowe's to get a replacement line, repair the water line, turn the water back on.

As most projects have their unexpected moments. we should not have been surprised that just when things seemed to have been going along swimmingly, this little hiccup happened.

Look at those walls and that floor! Not the final look we are going for, but so not blue. 

Right on schedule for Day One, even after the water line side project.

We are so excited to finally renovate this bathroom - It is a long time coming bringing this room out of the 1950s.

More updates coming soon!
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Tuesday, September 1, 2015


Is it time?

Yes. It's time.

It's time - as in it is finally time to get this bathroom updated for real.


We bought this bathroom:

So much blue. All the improvements that have been made over the years are past their prime, too. And they are not really improvements.

Then we ditched the wall paper, the extra layer of molding around the window and door and traded out the light fixture.

Next the sink faucet had to be replaced - The old one was just so, so awful.

Then Hero harvested tiles from behind the vanity and took out the soap dish, tooth brush holder and towel bar - all blue and built into the wall to last forever.

We edited the counter top, too - That thing just kept on going.

And we ended up here after I painted the vanity white. Not the worst looking bathroom ever, which is why we were not rushing to do the big renovation, but we sure don't love it.

And then this happened.

This is the soap dish in the shower. It is supposed to be attached to the wall forever like the others, but it has rebelled and broke loose. It has happened before guessing by the amount of caulk that is smooshed on there like bubble gum. (sorry about the fuzzy photo.)

This little issue was the thing that finally propelled this project to the top of the list. 


We measured and figured and came up with a budget ($1000!) and made our plans. We were on our way.

And with that excitement Hero did a little "research" to see what was behind the walls and under the floor. 

Looks like mostly dust. And insulation.

Which is better than lots of other things. Like critters. Or mold.

But money would have been better than dust. Maybe next time.

Look at that!

A whole (partial) wall with no blue.

Things always look worse in the middle of a project - Holy cow, what a mess.

Hero scoped out the other end of the shower / tub and found some previous water damage, but nothing wet, and the studs are in good shape.

 Another good sign.

We are really hoping the wall with the rebel soap dish is not too awful. Fingers crossed.

The floor was a little more challenging. Apparently these little tiles are set into about a foot of cement. Since the tub we ordered was a little wider that this one, Hero took the opportunity to get a new cement cutting saw blade and take out a section.

What a stinkin' mess!

Seriously, there was so much dust in there. Even with respirators, we could hardly breathe. 

Fortunately, Hero determined we should be able to pop the rest of those tiles off the cement. After prepping the cement the plan is to lay the new floor right down.

He only cut about 2-3 inches off. I cannot even imagine the crazy mess we would have going if the whole thing needed to come out. 

Need toilet paper? We keep it right next to the reciprocating saw.

But what a difference in our lovely floor with all the dust. After the first swipe cleaning, the white dust settled into the icky gray (probably used to be white) grout. I always knew white grout would be a huge improvement for this floor.

The real demo work starts this weekend. 

So excited!
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