The to do-do bathroom list

Yep, I put a poop reference in my title.

If you remember, we started the upstairs bathroom the last few days of May of this year. We thought the renovation would take us just a few months (silly us, we thought we'd be done in October) but are now "celebrating" our 7th month mark. Thank goodness we have two bathrooms.

Here's what's left (which I'm sure I'm missing stuff):


  • install vanity and figure out some tricky plumbing

  • build concrete counter top and install (easy, right?!)

  • Grout n' stuff

  • fix tub surround grout (we sortof ran out during the process and tried to make what we had last. the result was shallow grout lines)

  • seal tub surround grout

  • caulk the tub

  • Bathtub

  • install fixtures

  • get new drain and install

  • get metal corner thing to hold soap and shampoo

  • decide on a shower curtain and rod and put it up

  • Wood wall

  • finish installing wood wall - sand - seal

  • Paint

  • sand touch-up areas

  • paint touch-up areas on wall and ceiling

  • one more coat on moldings

  • Storage and accessories

  • decide on towel storage and vanity storage system

  • hang towel hooks

  • make toilet paper holder

  • frame and hang art work

  • get some general accessories

  • Other

  • get a door and hang

  • figure out window shade/curtain solution

  • We are so close to finishing up! Next project on the list to tackle ... our office! Who else is already mentally working on the next project without finishing the current one?


    It's Electric!

    Sorry for the lack of updates. I know you are dying to hear about the status of our bathroom.

    But I blame this place...

    Us- Disney December 2011

    ...with it's magicalness and it's unlimited supply of cookies and hot chocolate and it's holiday parade and fancy fireworks (and snow on Main Street - but we missed that).

    So, the title of this post refers to our addition of electric to the upstairs bathroom (not to the "Electric Slide" that is now stuck in my head ... thanks, self).

    Here's a picture montage of what our electrician masterfully completed:

    Wires for sconces:

    Wires for lights

    Sconces installed:

    Sconces installed

    Pow! Lights on!

    Sconces ON

    Oops, forgot to mention that we painted the walls (and installed some moldings)! I still have to paint the ceiling, which will be the same color as the walls.

    New outlet between the toilet and shower:

    Outlet by shower

    And I'm saving the best for the last ... the heated floors are hooked up! And we didn't screw up installing them! Double high-five!

    Heated floors hooked up


    Yep, a post about grout

    After much debate and concern, I picked out a grout color.

    The color had to be light enough for the tiles to blend together but dark enough so a lack of cleaning (this is the man bathroom) will not be noticed.

    This picture hit my inbox yesterday:

    The floor still had the "just been grouted" haze in this picture.

    Oh, and the threshold got installed too (after equal amounts of debate and concern)! Maybe this weekend I'll get some paint on these walls and the tub tile grouted too (I'll also throw in a toilet install on the list of things to do).


    Climate Reality Project

    Here's a little break from the usual bathroom update post (but I promise to have a tile grout post up tomorrow).

    I encourage you today to take a few moments to explore the 24 hour event from the Climate Reality Project and watch a live-streamed presentation.

    Here's a description of the 24 hour event from their website:

    "What is 24 Hours of Reality?
    24 Presenters. 24 Time Zones. 13 Languages. 1
    Message. 24 Hours of Reality is a worldwide event to broadcast the reality of the climate crisis. It will consist of a new multimedia presentation created by Al Gore and delivered once per hour for 24 hours, representing every time zone around the globe. Each hour people living with the reality of climate change will connect the dots between recent extreme weather events — including floods,
    droughts and storms — and the manmade pollution that is changing our climate. We will offer a round-the-clock, round-the-globe snapshot of the climate crisis in real time. The deniers may have millions of dollars to spend, but we have a powerful advantage. We have reality."

    With extreme drought, flooding and recent earthquakes, we have to wonder why we are experiencing such extreme natural events.

    This is our crisis to find solutions.


    We got floored!

    Yep, that title is pretty lame but that's how we roll.

    Over the past two weekends, we have been working on the upstairs bathroom floor. It wasn't the most enjoyable diy project and included much cursing and a learning while we go attitude. I'm sure the professionals are laughing at our lack of skill. In the end, we are super happy with the results.

    First, we started out by laying the floor warming mats and encapsulating it in mortar. (sorry Dude for the butt picture but we will have heated floors! yippie!)

    heated floors install

    encapsulate heat mats

    After that layer of mortar was dry, we installed the Ditra substrate.


    Next, a whole day was dedicated to cutting a bizillion 12" x 12" travertine tiles in half. In that process, I learned that wearing coveralls really helped stay a little less messy while using the wet saw.

    Over the span of three days, we were able to lay all of the tile.

    Installing tile - toward door

    Tiling toward toliet

    Tile toward toilet

    Tile toward sink

    The other night we put a few layers of sealer on the tile.

    Sealed tile

    I'm hoping soon we will be able to grout and install a toilet. We are so close yet so far to finishing this project before my October 1st deadline.


    Others working in tight spaces

    As we roll into a new month, I'm going to be changing my blogroll around a bit. I'd like to have a monthly theme for da list... and September will include blogs that are working on bathrooms (either in the works or just complete).

    Let me know in the comments section if I'm missing your blog or your favorite blog is not on the list. I love finding new reads even though my Google Reader might not agree with me.

    Happy September and happy reading:

    DIY Diva

    Home Sweet Headache

    Holyoke Home

    Life begins at thirty, right?

    Meet My Ugly Baby

    Pretty Handy Girl

    These blogs will be listed on the top left side of the blog and will be up for the entire month of September.



    I can't help staring at this awesome kitchen dreamed up by Alice Lane Interiors.

    2 Alice Lane Kitchen

    Image from Alice Lane Home; Check out more here

    We are not quite ready to start on our kitchen, but this image has me wondering if I should think of having a more modern look with some sleek cabinets and open shelving.

    You know what open shelving means ... new dishes!


    picking grout color

    Do you guys know how to pick grout colors? Is there a design science to picking the perfect color?

    I took to photobucket and "pulled" the color of the tiles into some fake grout lines.

    Wall tile with grout

    dark gray - medium gray - beige - chocolate brown

    What would you choose?

    Last night prior to making this little picture, I would have picked the dark gray. Now seeing it with the tile, I'm leaning toward a different color. Help!


    Tile Tetris

    Yesterday we got most of the glass tile up in the bath tub area. We worked until we used up all of the thin-set that we mixed and until the brink of major crankiness.

    Bathroom tub tile 8.14.11 2

    The Dude is worried that the tile looks "busy." I told him not to shower while drunk and he should be fine (btw, he picked out the tile).

    Bathroom tub tile 8.14.11

    Next step for the tile: cut the smaller tiles and finish the one wall, clean out any mortar between the tile and pick out a grout color.

    I'm hoping this dude bathroom will be done soon and before Hans and Emilie's bathroom is complete.

    (sorry for the poor quality of pictures...it is quite gloomy here today)


    Visitor 2

    Sadie and Lisa August 2011

    Sadie is visiting us right now while her family hikes in Acadia National Park. Since Pilot and Sadie are not best of friends, she comes with me to work (yay for working for a dog friendly company). Going to work is much fun for Sadie, since she gets SO much attention from my co-workers.

    Dog sitting is definitely an adventure. One time we watched a dog that lived just a few blocks away. He managed to sneak out our front door and ran back to his house.

    Do you have any wacky dog sitting stories to share?


    Visitor 1

    Puppy Love- medium

    Daisy and The Pilot

    Daisy visited us for a few days at the end of July. This was one of the only times they weren't rolling around wrestling and up to no good.

    Game on

    We are making (slow) progress on the upstairs bathroom. But the game is changing with a challenge from my bro, Hans, and his girlfriend, Emilie. They have also been remodeling their ONLY bathroom since February.

    You can check out their progress here. We are basically tied for what is left to do but they have ACTUAL TILE ON THE WALLS. We don't.

    Hans and Em's tiled bath tub surround. I'm jeals.

    Our wager: The first couple to finish their bathroom wins with the other couple having to help them on their next big project.

    This week, the dude (bless his heart) finished spackle/sanding and priming the walls. Our next step is to install the electric heated floors. Eeek, wish us luck!

    Right now the room looks like a Design Star white box challenge:

    Bathroom 8.10.11 sink corner

    bathtub 8.10.11

    Corner 8.10.11

    Oh my! The drywall dust!!

    Dusty windows

    Sorry I don't have more interesting pictures. Just some smooth drywall.


    Summer Dreamin'

    It's been super duper hot here which means we had to halt on the bathroom remodel. Our upstairs only has one a/c register which is not enought to cool the entire space ... and that whole heat rises thing wasn't helping things. But not to worry! We are starting to work on things again because the temp is finally in the low to mid 90s.

    Right now I'm dreamin' of some summer non-bathroomrenovation things:

    sperry top sidersunnies prada

    marc jacobs

    What are you dreaming about?


    Bathroom: In the works

    We are at the "fun" stage in the rebuilding the bathroom process ... drywall. Enough said, right?!

    So, moving on to some of the bling-bling that will be in the bathroom:

    West Elm's Flat Stock Single Sconce


    West Elm's Short Industrial Bath Cabinet

    West Elm Short industrial cart

    Overstock's Kraus Rectangular Ceramic Sink and Ramus Faucet


    Lowes' Laticrete Floor Warming System Laticrete Lowes floor warming
    Ditra at Home Depot
    Ditra Underlayment Home Depot

    Has anyone used Ditra for their underlayment (with heated floors)?

    I see lots and lots of reading in my future to feel confident in installing the Ditra as well as the heat floors.


    Happy House Anniversary

    House 1 Summer 2011

    Six years ago we bought this bungalow and moved in on a day that was over 100 degrees.

    We are still working on tons of projects in our little home and will probably continue to have some sort of construction item on our front porch (last week we had a toilet, this week some insulation) for the next six years.

    Dear House, thanks for giving us a roof over our heads and the perfect view of the town 4th of July fireworks from the porch. We will do our best not to burn or knock you down. The Dude shall continue to adorn you with the hibiscus he tries to "save" from the big box hardware stores.

    House 2 Summer 2011


    Bathroom Vanity

    We picked out a vanity on Sunday at Home Surplus. They didn't have the exact one we wanted but the one we picked out will be okay. It is smaller than our last one ... which is what we wanted to allow for more space in an already tiny bathroom. Why is it such a challenge to find a quality vanity and a good price? Thank goodness we found a store that actually had a nice selection.
    upstairs bathroom vanity

    Next step is to "flag" the granite slab that will be used for the top and have the granite people do the template.

    I'm just crossing my fingers that everything will look okay when it is all put together. Now, on to sconce shopping! Do you have a favorite resource for bathroom sconces?



    The Northeast

    We are huge fans of Brainstorm Print + Design and have enough of their prints to open a small South Jersey museum in their honor.

    Check out their newest set of prints, American Atlas. The Northeast print will be finding a home on one of the walls soon!



    We are now waiting for the electrician to come (in the middle of June to assess) and do some rewiring (at the end of June). The dry wall can't move forward until the electrician does the work and we can't tile the floor until the dry wall is up on the walls.

    bathroom status 6.2.11

    On Tuesday of this week, we adjusted the shower plumbing by making the shower head location a bit higher and converting the tub fixtures from a two-handle to a one-handle system. We also put in some of the insulation and worked on the floor (self leveler and luon).

    We are also on an unexpected holding pattern with our floor tile. The tile (12x12 travertine) that was gifted from a relative will not be enough to complete our floor. So, we are trying to track down more tile (that may be sitting at the dude's father's house) and might try to mix in a similar travertine if we do not have enough. Fun times!

    While waiting for the electrician to do his magic, we can put the cement board down on the floor and maybe tile the bath surround. Is there anything else we can do for busy work that I'm missing? I don't want to loose the momentum and have the project stall. I also would like the dude's bathroom to get done so he will not have to use my bathroom for much longer!

    Pretty Pattern

    McPherson Jules Reid

    Dahlia Jules Reid


    Please invite me to a fancy party so I can wear one of these lovely Jules Reid dresses!

    all images from Jules Reid


    Chicken or the egg?

    We may not have walls in the bathroom, but we do have the tile for the bathtub surround.

    from Lowe's


    A bathroom demo long weekend

    bathroom demo 5.28.11

    bathroom demo rental 5.29.11

    bathroom demo 5.29.11 nails

    bathroom demo 5.29.11

    We both wear inappropriate foot wear for demo.


    The offensive bathroom

    Our upstairs bathroom sits in the dormer opposite the shoe built-ins. It's small with a sloping ceiling and does not have a vent for heat in the winter.

    When we moved in (close to 6 years ago), it was a sea of peach and wood. The walls, ceiling, floors, and countertop were all a lovely shade of peach. The walls even had a stenciled seashell boarder. We replaced all of the wood bath accessories with some brushed nickel, painted the vanity, added a new mirror and updated the lighting. Sounds like a gem, right?!

    I've seen worse, but it's time for a remodel because we ended up with some free floor tile. The dude's brother was building a house and decided against the tile after it was purchased. We also got a new sink and toliet in the deal too, but we are not sure if we are going to use them since they are bisque and not white (we are hoping to salvage the tub which is white).

    We are lucky that this bathroom was added upstairs in the early 1990s by professionals. So, hopefully we will not have too many surprises.

    So here's some non-staged photos of the bathroom (don't forget, this is the dude's bathroom...I don't go up there):