Tuesday, 30 September 2008

The Knee-Bone's Connected to the Jaw-Bone

We can't finish mudding until we hang the last piece of drywall.

We can't hang the last piece of drywall until we seat the tub. We can't seat the tub until we put down the sub-floor.

We can't put down the sub-floor until we fix the mosaic tile substrate, which is worn mighty thin in places.

Luckily, The Geek is soon going to start putting up the tile where the radiator is to hang. We can't hang the radiator tho', until the grout comes in-sometime next week.

Sunday, 28 September 2008

Good-bye Mosaic Floor

Even tho' we hadn't managed to pull up all the cork tiles, we could tell from your fractured grout lines that your subfloor was much too damaged to allow you to remain.So The Geek pried up all the little pieces and saved as many of them as she could,

putting them into three milk bone pails she found on garbage eve a few months ago.
Right now she is using a grinder and a belt sander to level off all the little ridges that remained from the grout.

This isn't an out-of-focus picture, that haze is dust hanging in the air. A phenomenom that is echoed to a lesser degree throughout the rest of the house. Heaven help us, it is going to take a week to clean this place once we are done. (The Geek thinks a week is being optimistic).

Not a Metaphorical Rose

The roses are taking advantage of our long frost-free fall to set more budsand bloom again.

Saturday, 27 September 2008

There's a Hole, There's a Hole

Just inside the bathroom door, we found a big patch of missing mosaic tile, which explains why the cork tiles were installed.
This discovery has decided for The Geek that the mosaic floors cannot be restored. She had been waffling for the last few days about whether to fix the mosaic or go with the linoleum. She can sleep easy tonight.
Of course, while scraping up the cork and looking at the patch of missing tile, I have been singing "There's a hole in the bottom of the sea". Poor Geek, who was mudding and therefore trapped listening to me warble on.
These are the lyrics that I can remember.
There's a hole in the bottom of the sea
There's a hole in the bottom of the sea
There's a hole, there's a hole
There's a hole in the bottom of the sea.
There's a log in the hole in the bottom of the sea
There's a log in the hole in the bottom of the sea
There's a hole, there's a hole. There's a hole in the bottom of the sea.
Continue to add ending with
There's a flea, on the hair, on the wart, on the toe, on the foot, on the frog, on the branch, on the bump, on the log in the hole in the bottom of the sea.

Luckily for The Geek I couldn't remember many of the words to "I know an Old Lady who Swallowed a Fly" and "There's a Hole in my Bucket"

Something is Working

While we were armour plating the electrical wires and the PEX, the drain pipes for the sink were plated as well.

On the sixth try, The Geek found a place to anchor the drywall.
There would have been at least one hole in the drain pipe if the plates weren't there.

Friday, 26 September 2008

A Rose by any Other Name

may still smell just as sweet, but just because something is 'white' doesn't mean it is the same 'white' as the other 'white' in the shipment.

I left work early today to meet The Geek at Dynasty Bath where she was paying for the tile so we could go to Olympia Tile to pick it up. We arrived at Olympia about 13 minutes before they closed and started to check the tile, since some of the boxes were broken open. Some tiles were damaged so The Geek went to talk to the sales staff, while I checked the special edging pieces.
At some point, I noticed the edge pieces, which could best be described as 'bone', were not the same colour as the main tiles, which are distinctly white. Apparently just because you order a particular style of tile, in our case Maple Leaf, there is no guarantee that the trim pieces will be the same shade of white as the tile. This is what happens when you cannot buy from a wholesaler, but have to act through an intermediary. The sales staff at Olympia could have told us, where as the people at Dynasty probably didn't know that nifty little detail.
The whole order stayed at Olympia tile, and we are back at square one. Tomorrow we go and get our money back from Dynasty.

The saga continues....

Wednesday, 24 September 2008

I Hope the Frost Holds Off

The little acorn squash are one week old!

When they turned a lighter green, I thought they were done for, but apparently it just means they are getting bigger.

Sunday, 21 September 2008

Bathroom Reno Phase 7: Drywall Up; Mortar Down

Whatever drywall that can be installed before we seat the tub is done.
The capricious fates paid us remarkably little attention with this phase allowing us to put the holes for outlets, fans and radiator connections in the right places, not the opposite end. However, they did show up for a few moments this morning and hid the crowbar. We were certain we hadn't put it inside the wall but The Geek pulled out most of the screws and we peeked behind the drywall just to be sure. At that point the fates giggled and put the crowbar pretty much in plain view on the scaffolding.
I expect they will be less whimsical next time.The Geek has also put mortar in the holes in the floor left by various and sundry pipes.

Saturday, 20 September 2008

Bathroom Reno Phase 6: A Place to Keep Our...Tools

The Geek has completed the between-the-studs cabinets.

Thursday, 18 September 2008

Splash Down!

We have water flowing through the connections that will supply the bathtub. And more importantly, no leaks!And because we felt we didn't need to create more blog-fodder by screwing through the PEX when we hang the drywall, we armour/protection plated all the studs through which the PEX passes.

Wednesday, 17 September 2008


The Acorn squash have put in an appearance. I don't know where they have been hiding for the last several months, I just hope they are not too late to grow a bit.Especially since it is time to band the trees with tanglefoot.

Cycle or Drive

I was taking my bike out of the garage this morning when it started to rain. I briefly toyed with the idea of driving, but it was already after 0800 and I wouldn't have had time.
The sad thing is, I can ride to work in about 20 minutes, whereas it takes about 25 - 40 minutes to drive the six kilometers. Summer is better; I can drive and ride in about the same time, but once school starts, that is it. I guess the kids all drive to school, or are driven by their parents.
It is a sad situation all the way around.

Sunday, 14 September 2008

Collateral Projects

The hallway outside the bathroom has always been rather dark, so we decided while the wall behind was open, to install a light.

This will lead to a second project of patching and repainting this plaster wall. And now that it is much brighter in that area, it is very easy to tell that some attention desperately needs to be paid to the doorframes.

The Bathtub Fits!

I have been having dreams that it doesn't, which isn't logical since we measured several times and The Geek has done the sketchup. I wonder if all people who are renovating dream that things aren't going well?

Saturday, 13 September 2008

The Harvest to Date

Since some of these zucchini are rather large, we have been referring to them as 'the whales'.

Friday, 12 September 2008

Thursday, 11 September 2008

Choices, Choices

A few of the many colour options for the bathroom counter top (compared with a sample of the flooring).

I Like "Normal"

There is a certain 'normal' amount of chaos in this house. This is extreme, even for us!

Wednesday, 10 September 2008

Bathroom Reno Phase 5: WhooHOO!!

The maiden flush!The window is in and the wall insulated as well as the roughed in plumbing for the sink and towel rack.

The Geek tests out the sub-floor for the bathtub.

And, in the 'what were they thinking' department...

Why would they ship this tiny, light little bathtub apron in such a great big box?

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Bathroom Reno Phase 4:The Rented Toilet

And I don't mean a port-a-pottie.

While no laws were broken, we did make it from the house to the corner of St. James Street and Ellice Avenue in 20 minutes during rush hour.
Randy, the very nice proprietor of WC Potts, who undoubtedly winced when we raced in the door 10 minutes before closing,'rented' us a bowl until he can (hopefully) get a new one in from Chicago.

Since the new stack and drain are already installed, which is why we found out that the bowl didn't fit in the first place, it just has to be hooked up.

And, in the 'what were they doing?!' category, this piece of concrete is in the bathroom floor between the old outlet and the stack. Why that one place doesn't have shiplap is anyones guess.

And, of further note, the fellows who were to bring and install the new window did not show up. Apparently they were having vehicle trouble and will come tomorrow around 0900.

Always Check Your Bargains

OK boys and girls.
What is wrong with these pictures?

The top is the mounting location of the toilet bowl, the second is the back of the bowl itself.


Monday, 8 September 2008

Bathroom Reno Phase 3: How to Frighten a Plumber

This morning, before the plumber arrived, The Geek framed in the spot for the toilet tank and around the window.
She also tied a couple of computer magnets to a string and, dropping the fishing line down thru' the hole where the bathtub drain used to be, she managed to retrieve the pipewrench from behind the basement wall.

The plumber was due to arrive at 0800.
At 0830 I saw him getting out of his van and I was immediately suspicious; he was wearing a cowboy hat. We all have our little biases, and one of mine is non-cowboys in cowboy hats. He came in and had a look at the bathroom. When looked at the in-wall tank, he admitted he had never seen one before. I had explained thoroughly, or so I thought, to the dispatcher about everything that we needed the plumber to do. I'm not sure if it was the idea of cutting an old, cast iron stack, or the hot-water towel rack that pushed him over the edge but at 0910 he was back in his van on the 'phone to his office, and at 0920, he told The Geek he was going to get some 'stuff' and he would be back in about an hour.
At 1140, plumber #2 arrived. He inspired more confidence, tho' he kept repeating something about us having only one bathroom and being worried how he was going to manage to leave us with a toilet at the end of the day while he tried to do all the stuff that had to be done in that wall.
Then, the water shut-off valve failed. Amazingly enough, the city only took an hour to respond and shut off the water to the house.
At this point I am sitting here on the computer. Lee (plumber #2) has gone to Home Depot to get a valve to fix the water shut-off problem. The van he is driving belonged to another plumber and it is apparently quite a mess. The Geek has gone to BA Robinson to find a shower valve since the one we ordered about a month ago from another company has not arrived yet. When she gets back, I will make anther trip to the dump. I need my truck for a class tonight and The Geek has a class too, tho' she is undecided if she will go.
By tomorrow we will have had to figure out how to move a stud. Right now, the center of the tub where the shower valve is to be placed, is right in the middle of a wall stud.
Tomorrow is also the day the new window is to be installed.
Stay tuned.

Bathroom Reno Phase 2: The Naked Bathroom

Saturday and Sunday we gutted the bathroom. Cutting the tub in two took the most time with The Geek spending an hour with the angle grinder and reciprocating saw.

They don't make them this thick anymore. It probably took at least three men to haul that baby into the house since they didn't have the option of bringing it in two pieces.

And under the tub, we found a curl of what looked like dried grass.

Since we're not sure if it was a pagan house blessing, I think I may put a sprig of rosemary and lavender under the new tub.

I very much like the old tile flooring and we wish there was some way it could be repaired. It was while I was scraping the cork tiles off the floor that I heard The Geek muttering very forcefully in German. (that is never good news). Turns out she had dropped the big pipewrench behind the wall.

And while we were using the reciprocating saw to cut off the pipe seen in the lower right hand side of the picture, we heard a loud crash and the sound of breaking glass. We were relieved that we had only knocked some pictures off the wall in the hallway. We had originally thought we had punched ourselves a hole and would have to install a light fixture.