Sooooo… let’s pretend I had this blog called Trailer Trashtastic that I failed to update for months at at time….
I sure hope you forgive me for that, because at this rate I’m going to have to start every post out with a big fat apology. Anyway, I’ve been busy! I have about a gajillion things to share with you.
Let’s start with the bathroom. Before our bathroom was finished, we spent 8 days in the sun at the beach. It was wonderful. What wasn’t so wonderful from my perspective was that we had to leave our landlord an open invitation to finish the work while we were gone. Because at that point the project had been going on for 3 weeks.
Yes. I said THREE WEEKS.
Suuuuuuch a headache.
I’m not super cool with people being able to traipse in and out of my house unsupervised while I’m far away. It’s not that I think anything is going to wander off… it’s the snoop-factor. I’m not gonna claim to be so interesting that people just really wanna root around in my stuff, but everyone has drawers full of papers with student loan balances, old report cards, little scraps of memories… you know, personal things that you don’t share with everyone. Or anyone. And I KNEW the snoop-factor was a real possibility when I came back and all my mail was on the kitchen table (but not at my request). It was confirmed when I called Mr. Landlord to advise him we were home and thanks for finishing up and he gave me a 10-minute dialogue about how he was looking for toilet paper to clean the mirror he hung back up (P.S. Who cleans a mirror with toilet paper?) so he wandered over to our other bathroom, alllll the way on the other side of the house, because I guess the toilet paper in the remodeled bathroom wasn’t good enough? And while he was in the other bathroom he noticed that the lid to the toilet tank was broken.
After our phone call I went into that other bathroom and saw that he noticed the broken lid (which by the way never matched or fit either toilet) so much that he moved the framed photos and candles that were sitting on top of it and left them strewn haphazardly across the sink. Also it looked like someone rolled around in the grass and then sat on our sofa for awhile…
Snoop-factor. It’s real and not imagined.
On the up-side, though, the bathroom turned out nicely. I’m happy with the finished wall and even happier that the toilet is seated and in working condition.
I’m also happy that we rent this trailer and do not own it because the caulk that was used to seal everything off is not the kind of caulk you are supposed to use in a bathroom. In fact, whenever I run a rag across it to clean, some comes off. I don’t know if it was wrong or out-of-date-or both, but it never set up. And since I can’t handle another 3 weeks of my home being invaded I’m just gonna leave it like it is.
Okay. Moving along… I’m not actually done with the bathroom. There are a few purchases I’d like to make:
- cabinet space/shelves for over the toilet
- another curtain for around the tub- preferably one with a pattern
- new towels!!!
- a row of hooks for hanging towels
And speaking of hooks, I have a cool project that I’ll be sharing in the next couple of days:
Kitchen Organization!! For cheap.
I also constructed what will soon become COMMAND CENTRAL in the kitchen, complete with a giant chalkboard wall.
We came up with a solution to temporarily hide the laundry “nook” ugliness annnnd there are lots of things going on outside, too.
Fall decorations, ya’ll.
It’s Saturday, and I am happy to report that the bathroom project is moving along nicely. On Thursday, after my Wednesday full of frustration and panic, work went at a slightly furious pace, and by the end of the day the new sheet rock was up with a coat of mud and most of the tile is back down on the floor.
The siding is in place at the back of the house, which means the exterior wall is complete. The siding even got a good scrub! No more tarp as an excuse for an outside wall.
The toilet isn’t set yet; we have to paint first, so until someone returns to sand the three coats of mud on the wall we are at a bit of a standstill. Chad and I went to pick out a paint color yesterday.
We will be purchasing an Interior/Exterior Bonding Primer from Valspar. It adheres to slick surfaces like cabinetry and vinyl, so it will be just what we need to cover the wallpaper. I have plenty of experience with Gripper, by Glidden, the original product charged with the task of bonding to slick, hard-to-paint surfaces. It works reliably every time I’ve ever used it, and I only hope its Valspar counterpart does as well. We don’t have a Home Depot in our area, and paint brands are store-loyal.
This is where the new wall joins the old wall; we’re going to paint the entire back wall one color straight across. We’re going with a darker accent color pulled from some of the detail in the wallpaper. I’m still not a fan of the wallpaper, but if I’m picking whole rooms to paint, we are starting with my kitchen before we even consider the bathroom.
Also my bath tub is clean.
Things wrapped up yesterday looking a little better. Chad came home from work and a super duper thunderstorm was blowing in, so at 5 pm construction moved into high gear. We have a wall!!! But no toilet.
Alas, I am still sharing the other bathroom with the little boys.
This is the nice new sheet rock that will go over the new wall. This morning it is MAJORLY cramping my style because it completely prohibits me from accessing the bathroom counters and sinks at all. I can’t get to the cabinets down below with all my stuff in them.
Needless to say I’m looking pretty cool these days…
I did manage to reach the deodorant, so at least I think I smell alright.
To Be Continued…
Let me begin by apologizing for being the worst Trailer Trashtastic blogger ever.
I do spend most of my time at Sugar Dish Me, so those of you that follow me there know that I’m not really missing. It’s just that I cook EVERY DAY, so taking a little extra time to photograph my efforts isn’t a big stretch, and there certainly isn’t any financial commitment beyond my usual grocery budget. I’m pretty proficient at doing things in a budget-friendly way, and while I would love to spend every bit of spare cash on home improvements and furnishings, mostly I just can’t really justify it.
Anyway… let’s talk about what prompted me to be here today instead of my usual Sugar Dish stomping grounds:
My home is in limbo (you know, the place Dante writes about that exists between Heaven and Hell when you just don’t know what to do or where to go? We are THERE.). It is not a happy place right now. We have been invaded.
It all started when I pulled up the rugs in the master bathroom for their weekly run through the wash. We have a really big bathroom (I mean disproportionately big… it’s almost as big as the master bedroom; I’d throw out measurements for you but math is not really my strong suit), complete with a pretty garden tub, flowy curtains, double sinks and a separate stall shower. There is a skylight that lets in lots of natural light. Our bathroom is generally a very happy bright place to be. Also – NO LITTLE BOYS ALLOWED.
So I pull up the rugs and start scrubbing the floors. Chad comes home for lunch and notices that against the bare floor the toilet looks sort of crooked. He messed around, pulled up a floor tile, and poked around for the source, but everything looked okay. Definitely crooked, though. When I returned to my bathroom scrubbing chores I noticed some light water marks at the bottom of the baseboards behind the toilet. Uh-oh.
It was a day or two before we had a few minutes to run over and inform our landlords of the issue. Some background on the couple we rent from: a very super nice retired couple that love to share fresh veggies from their garden. We are really very fortunate; I’ve rented from some real lame-o’s. These people are like hitting the landlord jackpot. BUT! They like to talk. So if we walk over the road to tell them anything, or even just to pay the rent, we can plan on being there for awhile. Sometimes it just doesn’t fit into our schedules.
By the time we went to let them know that the toilet is crooked and we suspect water damage from some of these crazy storms, the toilet was noticeably more crooked. That was Friday.
So our very nice landlord/handyman wanted to do the work himself. Cheaper and faster, right? On Monday he got the ball rolling and took everything apart. He measured, made a list of materials, and got a good sense of what needed to be done. Basically there is a leak in the skylight or something that is routing water down the back of the house. The wall has water damage and it is now attacking the floor.
Tuesday morning arrived, and with it my early morning workout. Workout = Shower. The construction disaster should technically only affect one half of the bathroom. It’s a big enough space that I should have a clear path from the door to the shower. This half of the bath also includes access to the sinks and countertops.
THAT IS WHERE ALL THE IMPORTANT STUFF IS.
Important stuff like 42 bottles of lotion. And make-up. Jewlery. Face wash. Deodorant. Tweezers. THE MIRROR. My toothbrush and dental floss!!!!!! On my way to the shower I discovered that all of my clean towels have been thrown in one of the sinks and there is the great big mirror that’s been removed from the wall, moulding and all, just sort of leaning all heavy and dirty on top of them. The candles that usually rest on the tub are lolling on the counter waxing up bobby pins and a stray necklace. The bathmats that I washed, dried, and carefully laid over the side of the tub (remember the rugs that got this whole ball rolling? Yeah. Those rugs.) have dirty boards leaning on them. The lid to the toilet is in what was my sparkly clean bathtub. Also there is some unidentified dirt in there. Tuesday morning on the way to the shower I started freaking out.
At the end of Tuesday everything looked exactly like it did at the end of Monday. Rain was in the forecast, and even though it never rained and was 86 degrees and sunshiney bright, Tuesday must have been like the bathroom re-do Sabbath. Time to think and reflect maybe?
While we were sleeping Tuesday night/Wednesday morning it rained. A LOT. So at 4 am I woke up to a really cool watery dripping sound . That’s because it was raining in my bathroom.
I don’t know how much you can decipher from this, but the material you see with the horizontal slatted appearance is THE SIDING. That little bit of vinyl is all that exists between us and the outside world. The soaking wet board and insulation still hanging out in the middle of the wall are confusing for me…
After this I became afraid to enter the bathroom at all. Also I have been air-conditioning the backyard since noon on Monday… because I have room for that in my budget. I have become very worried about my washcloths, hand towels and PRODUCTS. How do you disinfect Argan hair oil?
By 8 am this morning I’d passed the point of no freak-out return. I called my best friend. She talked me down. Sort of.
Work began about 9:30 am (after the Tuesday hiatus… P.S. this morning it was actually rainy). The siding came off, the rest of the wall came down, and I resorted to frantically typing this post because I need to vent. FORREAL.
I can’t cook, can’t bake, can’t think with all the banging. I am terrified that we will be taken over by spiders since we have no wall. I think I may have to sell my soul to the power company at the end of all this.
I don’t know how many more days this will go on, but I do know that I am a girl and I need my bathroom. I really wish someone would have asked me where I would like my clean towels? Or told me that I should just go ahead and rescue all bath products before the work started. Or let me know that I’d have no wall…
Do you have any crazy remodeling experiences? Tips for how to survive this?