Sunday, April 3, 2011

Is there a Guiness Book of Records category for the longest bathroom remodel in history?

The date was 9/26/2009. I was bright eyed and bushy tailed. Due to some unforseen circumstances (i.e. the waterfall pouring from my upstairs bathroom might be a  clue something was amiss) we were forced to begin the much anticipated (1 of 2) bathroom remodel. Oh darn!  I was really gonna miss the fake oak cabinet, the gold and white faux marble counter top, the plastic tile walls in the high-end design of white, gray and blue flowers, the dingy acrylic bathtub, green and brown pebble linoleum and the toilet you had sit sidesaddle on--or else you would smack your knees on the sink vanity. Yeah...NOT

So now the date is April 4, 2011. Where is my beautiful new bathroom? The high gloss white wall tiles, the smooth granite countertop, the new and expanded layout? Still in the photoshopped magazine layout of any home improvement magazine. Back to earth with a resounding thud. It seems my dreams of grandeur = much moula I do not have (and if I do have it, it has been acquired illegally and I am looking at slammer time)....sigh!

Soooo, what did I get? Well.... we did gut the room to the studs. The hubby refused to expand the footprint, so it is still a VERY small bathroom at 5 1/4 ft x 7 1/2 ft. For a full size bath...Really?! The plumbing was reconfigured to best utilize the small space (which ain't saying much). The electrical was slightly updated to include a GFI--no home perms for me! The room has since been insulated and vapor barrier installed. Green board and cement backer board is installed--although there was the incident of hubby installing the backer board incorrectly. Do over anyone?

The beautiful new enamel on steel tub is securely installed and the water connection checked (Yay for no leaks!). Everything has been mudded, taped and sanded. The beachy sand colored ceramic floor tile has been mortared in and  yet to be grouted. The beautiful high gloss white subway tiles and corresponding trim pieces, the neutral glass mosaic tiles for accent and all the sleek and shiny satin nickel hardware sit forlornly in the corner of the spare bedroom  are now installed. As did the new toilet--which is FORTUNATELY still in the box  is also installed. How disconcerning would that be to see that everday. Yeah that had to go out to the garage. No john in the bedroom unless it is John-ny what was I saying....

On the upside of TWLBRIH (That would be THE WORLD"S LONGEST BATHROOM REMODEL IN HISTORY) is I have had MORE than adequate time to score some awesome deals. The 13" ceramic floor tile- only $0.75/ tile. The bathtub was on sale for $109, I had a $20 coupon and a $50 gift card, so my out of pocket price was $39 plus chump change to cover the tax. The cost to reconfigure all the plumbing was the cost of all the materials and a CHEAP-O favor= slave labor from a family friend at $125.00. Considering there was a full 8 hrs of work, can you imagine what I would have had to pay a plumber on my own dime--YIKES!

The subway tile was $0.22/ tile and I had a $20 coupon for the total order. All the hardware (sink and tub faucets, towel bars) are from Ovrstock at 65% of the original cost. The light fixture was a clearance item for $10. The best deal was the the wall mount tilt mirror. Found at the local thrift shop still in the package with ALL of the hardware AND instructions--(you know a man didn't buy it cause they always throw the instructions away)-- retails at $50 and I got it for $4.50! YAY for thrift-erific bargains!

We are currently 60% 90%c ompleted on the bathroom. So 60%  x 19 months= a helluva long time. I hate math. Hopefully we will be finished before the 2yr 30 month mark comes around. Unless there IS a Guiness category and I am gonna have to win that sucker. What DO you win for a Guiness category?...

UPDATE... As of November 3, 2011 the only remaining projects are to install the crown moulding, hang the shower rod, hang the mirror, install the exhaust vent and accessorize. As soon as it is complete, I will post a picture! Yay!

Elbow deep in...manure

HA! In honor that we actually have spring-like weather today here in Cincy (it's is 68°C!)-- I am going wax poetic about all things garden! Woo!

The cold frame and mini green house have been assembled. Someday I will have an awesome greenhouse and not just the pretend toddler sized one. But a gal has to make due with what she has. All the seeds have been purchased along with 2 new pair of garden gloves.( Haha-- ok not really-- because there is ALWAYS room in the garden for just a couple more plants).

All the garden stuff has been hauled out of the shed to my pathetic little corner of the garage for me to work.(Translation--what the hubbs did not mangle or throw away has been retrieved and been begrudgingly placed in the the 4ft x 6ft space carved from his man land)

Pansies have been potted in the planters flanking the steps to the front door. Nothing shouts SPRING like the garish yellow and purple pansies. Additional river rock has been poured around the front porch beds-- this is replace the rocks removed my by a few toddlers that have been known to frequent my house.

I have replentished my supply of peat pots, yogurt cups and egg trays (and whatever else I can use for all my seedlings). I mixed up a batch of of super- grow happy garden soil, so all of my green babies blossom into yummy veggies and" y'all are green-with-envy" flowers.

I began the draft grid for plantings and my 2011 garden journal. YES--I am THAT person. Lettuce and carrot seeds have been sown in containers because I am a greedy and do not like to share with the ravenous zombie bunnies that roam our woods and fields.

Next, begins the tedious steps of seed starting--labelling and monitoring the germination. Being ruthless when it is time to thin the seedlings. And agonzing on when I can harden off the the wee delicate shoots of green and plant them into their seasonal home. Ohio weather is so unpredicatable and overnight you can lose 6-8 weeks of work.

I try to mimic the planting times of the old-timeys in town. Grandpapappy Farmer Emmet and Granny Mildred know a thing or two about working the soil. Anyone that says gardening is boring just doesn't realize what a gamble it is. Weather, insects and wild creatures are all the wildcards in this game.

True it is a lot of work. But is it worth it? You bet your sweet corn it is! When everyone is paying $2.99/ lb for anemic no- flavor tomatoes, bitter skin cukes and woody carrots from the mega Chinamart-- I will be nomming on big red juicy 'maters, cool crisp green cukes and sweet as sugar carrots from my garden. Knowing they are pesticide free and proudly grown right here in the ole' USA. Not to mention there is something just--soothing--about touching the earth. Nothing is better for my peace of mind than digging in the dirt. All the cares and worries just drift away with every shovel-ful of soil.

Yes I realize the season is early, but I am daydreaming of of the goodies yet to come. And for any of you that want some of the bountiful harvest--I say--grab a pair gloves and pick it yerself!

Let the gardening season commence!