Thursday, November 27, 2008

Time to Compare

Thought it would be interesting to put the Before and After shots in one place.

Garden Tub:


Day Eleven - - Done???

Oh joy!~ Oh tiny kittens and puppies! Oh unexpected bonus checks!! The day is here. At last a project started way back in December of 2007 has come to it's 'almost' completion.

It's the first day of my Thanksgiving Break and I got to sit around waiting for contractors. YAY!! The plumber was to be out between 9 and 10. He showed up after 11. Something about car trouble. He was here to install the shower heads, the faucets, and the superflush toilet. I asked him to start with the shower because the company who put the shower glass walls together were coming out soon. He got right to work.

The glass guy was to be here between 11 and 1. He showed up after 12. He also got right down to business.

It was a long day waiting around for them to finish. But finally around 4 our project director Mike and his boss came by to take a look at the final project. The boss did a double take when he saw our bathroom. He told us it was definitely not the typical beige tile and white appliance look. In his opinion it was absolutely gorgeous. Mike too was pleased with how it turned out. He does a lot of $100,000 bathrooms with marble going all the way to the ceiling. It gets kind of boring to him. But then he comes across our design (much less than $100K) and he can't compare it. Warms the heart, doesn't it?? Or are they just trying to make us feel great about our finished project? Either way, I still love my bathroom.

The shower heads are in. Yep, that is plural! There's the big overhead main piece, and then four separate wall jets. Each one is adjustable. Ooooooooh!

The faucets tooks some finagling because of the vessel bowl placement and then the La Toscana faucets needed so much distance from the wall. At last it was all in place and we got to flush the toilet for the first time. Let me tell you: It SUCKS! Superflush it is.

Only one problem we noticed so far. The drain installed in the vessel bowls sit above the base so water stands there. We might have to get the holes enlarged so that the drain sits down into the bowl.

From here on out we need Doug to come back out and grout underneath the shower heads because they don't sit flush against the wall like they should. Hmm, didn't think of that while installing the pebbles. Our mirrors are being built by Home Depot and should be done sometime next week. We have some more painting to be done. We already did a primer base of a medium gray color. I thought that would be too dark, but everything is looking really great together.

Day Ten - - Details

Doug came out just for a few hours today. He placed the cabinets against the wall and caulked around them. He set the tub seam and then filled it with water so that it would settle with the correct weight. Then he left. We'll see him again next week.

Day Nine - - Lighting In

Not much going on for this Monday. The electrician came out and installed the new can lights. You can see three of them in the picture below. There's another one inside the shower stall.
Doug had to wait utnil all of that was done before he could get to work on finishing the floor and wall grouting. He worked diligently until 6 P.M. to finish it all up today.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Day Eight - - Grout

Here you can see Doug sealing the slate flooring. Unfortunately the stuff dries and the floor will not always retain this huge glossy shine.
I love the beautiful color variations of this floor. Doug did a fantastic job of arranging the different tile patterns across the room.

The shower stall is completely grouted. I can just imagine the amount of time he had to work with this. He had to lay down the grout and then wipe off each individual stone across the entire wall and floor. GAH! No thank you.
He tells us that we can use a high gloss sealant on these pebbles to make them shine. YAY! I like that idea because I think the grout kind of dumbs down the effect of the pebbles.

A close up of the wall with the grouting all done.

Day Seven - - Bullnose

No, I am not upset and spouting foul names about the tile guy or something.
Bullnose is a new term in my vocabulary (extensive? not so much). It is when the edges of a tile are rounded off for a curved edge instead of the flat sharp edge tile comes with.
It makes a wonderful transition up against a wall.

Or in this case used as a transition from the carpet of the bedroom over the threshold into the bathroom.

Here you can see the bullnose being used as the edges of the tub surround.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Day Six - - Floors Down

Another day dawns bright and early. Stumble out of bed to move the Jeep so that Doug can park there and use the garage. Just a side note? It's FREEZING outside!

Doug arrives right at 7:30 A.M. and gets to work.

I get to spend the day delivering the dog to the vet to have his back end, umm, well emptied. Don't ask. Then I hauled my cookies all the way over to the Mall to shop for an AC adaptor for a new IPOD dock. All that work and it doesn't even work.

Had to be home before noon so that the roof guy, Justin, could come and do his inspection. To give you an idea at how shoddy our roofers originally built our home, here is one picture Justin took today. EGAD!

By 5:30 P.M. Doug finishes up with the rest of the wall and tub surround. And he got started on the slate flooring by putting down this gray crack suppressor. Yay! Hopefully these tiles won't crack and form a line across the room.

Here are the three built in shelves for the shower stall.

What do you think so far?

Monday, November 17, 2008

Day Five - - Walls Up

It was a tough three days to get through. I got so excited watching all of the changes develop last week. Waiting those three days with nothing happening was rough on the anticipation scale.

Well, was I in for a surprise today. Doug returned bright and early (7:30 A.M.). So on a day off I can't even sleep in. Little price for such a great job. He worked all day to get the shower stall walls up. Poor guy had to pick through the pebble sheets to find ones that didn't have big have stones on it.

He got that all up by around 2 and then started in on the RainForest Green marble tile. This is going to run up along the walls around the entire room. He was cutting and hanging that until 5:30. Amazing how much he can get done in such a short time. The one time I did a tile floor it was an agonizing three days for just a straightforward rectangular room.

I digress. Doug will be back tomorrow to do the rest of the rainforest. Then maybe start on the slate??

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Master Bath - - Day Four

Cabinets have arrived. We saw this funky design in a showroom and really liked its creative twist on the doors and shelving. So we asked the fine folk at Home Depot if they could possibly create something similar? The answer..."Yes, of course. What kind of wood would you like?" I love Home Depot.

The doors are in a jigsaw cut design so that they are the old boring straight cut doors. There are two shelves inside that roll out on sliders. The top one is so cool because it has an insert cut out of it to make way for the piping underneath the sink. Clever use of space, I say.

I am so enamored with the oak hardwood finish of these that I would glady marry both of these vanities.

Want to see my loves? Since you asked, Okay:

We're also starting to see the pebble trims coming. There will be a two inch strip across the room of this pebble.

Remember the TileGuy, Doug? Well, he attempted to put up the first sheet of river rock for the shower walls. Too bad the tile mud couldn't hold up the weight. It slid right down the wall. Lovely. He has to come back with something stronger on Monday.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Master Bath - - Day Three

Huge difference coming home today! Insulation replace, walls were up, some sort of plastic sheeting to prevent leakage, and then black sealant. Ooh, big diff??

The shower floor is in!! Never mind the extra foot of space added on the front and back areas from the original. Can you see the polished river rock? Can you see the texture of each individual stone adding to the overall earthy effect? Can you imagine the sensation of soft smoothly rounded rocks gently massaging the undersoles? Yeah? Yeah. I know. I can't wait, either!
Also, more materials were delivered today. We have special ordered two vessel bowls for our vanities.

We chose this style because of its natural material exterior. The green granite inner material goes great with the rainforest marble.
This is one of the vessels.

and here's the second one. Sigh. I can hear your brain from here. I totally agree with you. It looks like a bedpan, right? Alas, we can only return the vessel if it is defective. Please find something defective with this one, or I am going to be washing my face in a urinal shaped sink. Any help is appreciated! Thanks.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Master Bath - - Day Two

There wasn't much going on when I arrived home today. A lot of discussion about placement for the decorative Rain Forest Tile. Where and how to place a strip of flat tile so that the glass shower doors could be installed. Also going through the Mongolian Spring slate tile and picking out color juxtapositions. Fun times.

Master Bath - - Day One

Original Designs:

Garden Tub

Shower Stall

The day has indeed finally arrived. After almost an entire year of our master bathroom being out of commission, we are ready to begin remodeling. The more I live in my current home, the more I hate those builders who thought they could get away with cutting corners. Every day something new pops up (literally sometimes) and it makes me wonder how the house ever passed inspection. ~sigh~
We stopped using the master shower right after returning from Christmas with the family around December 27th. We had noticed caulking coming unseated and blackish mold growing along the seams. A decision to let the tile wall in the shower dry out has now become a ten month ordeal that is ending today!

Home Depot, especially Chris, has worked hard with us to make our vision become a reality. If things work out according to plan y'all may never see me again because I won't be leaving my bathroom, ever! You'll see what I am talking about as I update the progress, so keep an eye out for new posts.

Today I came home from work and they had completed all of the demolition of the old bathroom. The yucky cracked tile floor is gone. The oversized double vanity and garish mirror have disappeared. The shower stall has been completely ripped out and hauled away. Leaving a new kind of mess in its place. But with a little imagination I can almost see a light at the end of the tunnel.
Doug, the Tile Guy as he is to be forever known, says that he should be out of here by next Friday. Hmm, I am hoping this project does NOT turn into a scene from the old Tom Hanks Film, The Money Pit. The one where the builders kept insisting it would only take two weeks and kept saying it for the next two years. Please please please don't be that way!

Here's a shot of the shower head placement. Yes, you counted correctly. There are FOUR side nozzles being installed. Plus a rainshower head soon to be arriving!

Here's a shot of what was lurking behind the moldy corroding tile wall. Blackish insulation and badly placed boards. Thankfully this isn't as bad as could be inspected. No Black Mold, yippee!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Eastern State Penitentiary (ESP) Ghost Hunt #2

You may recall back in September of last year I disappeared into an abandoned mental institution with my sister and friends. Don't worry, we made it back out again.

WELL, it's that time again!

Yep, I am going on another ghost hunt with my family. This time however they have turned what I originally thought of as a 'rocking fun time' to a full out professional touring group. The group is called SoulFan Paranormal (SFP) and they conduct equipment heavy searches through local institutions around the Boston area.

The group decided to travel towards Philadelphia, PA this time, though. And I will be joining them, hurrah! We will be going on a day tour with all the other 'muggles' (non ghost hunting folk). Then returning later that night to have the entire place to ourselves.
My sister is leading the investigation this time and she has already mapped out team members and camera locations throughout the site. She put me on her team because we always have a good time together (read as "laugh our asses off").
I can't wait to see this place. From the Ghost Hunters episode, I have gathered it is WICKED huge. Should be a fun time.
Stay tuned for tons of pictures from this trip. Especially since I have my Nikon 50mm f1.8 D lens in my hot little hands. It should be fantastic for all of those low light situations.
Wish me luck and pray for a safe return, yeah?


I am separating this word, because that's how YUCKY it feels to have this thing. Last week one of my little darlin's comes to me and says, "Mr. F, look at what we have to go to the doctor's for tonight!" in such an eager voice I had to look to build up self-esteem when I can, right?

So stay with me and imagine my recoil of horror when I notice the "Fungus-Amongus". Sent him immediately to the nurse. She confirmed it.

I didn't think anything more about it until today. I was in the midst of my lazy period and hadn't shaved in awhile. It got itchy so I shaved it clean before leaving for school. I was washing my hands after lunch and happened to look in the mirror (can't have lasagna in my teeth, can I?).

This is the moment when I recognize what that itchy area on my face actually was. GAAAAAAAH!

And with me flying out to Philly to conduct another ghost hunt with my family (more about that in next post) on Friday.

I feel yucky.