Way, way back, many centuries ago,
Not long after the Bible began.
We set out to renovate the downstairs bathroom
And get it done pronto!Â That was the plan!
Ok, enough with channeling Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (love that musical). It seems like forever ago that we started renovating the downstairs bathroom.Â Rick began by pulling out the existing vanity and grungy toilet when I was away in Harvard.Â Next, we repaired the rotten sub flooring,Â made-over the vanity with a new faucet and vessel sinkÂ and then laid some new tile. And then … our progress halted. Seized up. We became constipated.Â In the metaphorical sense, you understand. Many a month went by with us gazing longingly into the shell that was our bathroom, dreaming of downstairs facilities.
Well, our wait is finally over (ex-lax is key). We now have a working downstairs bathroom, complete with grouted tile and painted walls. But the passage wasn’t always clear (ok, enough with the toilet puns). Before we were able to grout anything, we first had to rip some tile back out.Â Yes, you read that correctly.Â
From our many trips going into the bathroom to admire our handy tiling work, we had accrued a set of small cracks in two or three of the tiles by the door. With both of us being perfectionists (Rick is the OCD type, I am the “work for 24 hours non-stop to get it right, even though it should only take 2 hours” type), neither of us wanted to groutÂ over the cracked tiles.Â So, our only option was to bring those babies back up again. A couple of chisels, a hammer, a sledge hammer, a floor scraper (and two type-A personalities) later, we had the three offending tiles out of the way.Â As the tile came up, we figured that the cracks were caused from an uneven join where the sheets of backerboard came together.
So with more backerboard laid down and a generous slathering of tile adhesive, we tiled the bathroom.Â Again.
A few days later wasÂ Labor DayÂ – a perfect time to grout the tile.Â Unfortunately, (ahem) I had to go into work, so Rick had the fun task all to himself.Â We chose a sanded grout very close to the color of the tile to make the joins look seamless. After mixing the grout with the recommended dose of water, Rick squeegeed it on with a rubber float.Â After a 15 minute wait, he began wiping the tile with a damp sponge. Wiping.Â Wiping.Â Wiping.Â Lots of wiping involved in grouting.Â In fact, I think the whole process should be renamed wiping, instead of grouting.
We let the grout cure for 24 hours before applying grout sealer – this protects the grout from any stains.Â Stains.Â Bathroom. ‘Nuff said.Â And then, we were *finally* able to set the toilet. And paint the walls a gorgeous slate blue color.
We are so close to finishing our downstairs bathroom renovation.Â We still have a few finishing touches to do, such asÂ finishing our vanity makeover,Â hangingÂ the TP and towel holders, painting the ceiling and putting up some crown molding. Then, some decorative touches, such as some of my black and white photography, will be the piece de resistance to this makeover.Â Stay tuned for the final reveal, complete before and after pics – coming soon!Â Well, definitely sometime this century.