Octavia here bringing you another interesting/ non-interesting story. About four months ago we had to start redoing our bathroom. It was necessary after my husband had water shooting out of the handle of the hot and cold water. So listen to this small story before I continue with the reason for blog today. A little back story on how this all got started.
Four months ago I had to quit my job due to the tole it had on me and my body. My husbands mother was watching our kids while I worked second shift at the hospital. Me working second shift and him working first was not fun. My routine was get up at 6:00 a.m. get some coffee started, then wake kids up around 6:30 a.m. Well after a bit sweet Kait started getting the boys up so I could sleep longer. At 6:40 we were eating breakfast and getting dressed. Four kids out the door sometimes five when we had Emmett. Leave the house around 7:20 a.m. drive 30 minutes to get Kait to jazz band practice by 7:50 a.m. Then drop Rhys off at school by or before 8:00 a.m., then drop Rhian off five minutes later. Drive back home 30 minutes. Wait till 2:00p.m. drive thirty minutes to Chris’s moms house to drop Benji off. Talk to his mom and step dad for 10 to 15 minutes go to work. Clock in at 3:00 p.m. work till 11:30 p.m. drive thirty minutes home. Be home by midnight stay up with my husband for a a while go to bed around 1 a.m. and then start the day all over again. This was getting very old on both ends. My husband would get our kids around 6:30 p.m. and they would eat at 7 o’clock most nights then bed at 8 o’clock. This shit was getting old on both ends. Having four to five hours of sleep everyday and not wanting to do shit with my two year old Benj. Falling asleep on the couch and him getting into things was not my idea of fun. I was tired all the time and felt like a horrible parent. Covid fucked our world up at the hospital. We lost people working extra shifts and doing extra things we were killing ourselves. This though is for another story.
Background on why I quit. On to the bathroom remodel which is the project I started after I quit work. We had a stand up shower….well the shower was leaking all over the floor. I figured it was do to the shower caulk being bad and falling off at the base. So my husband said get all the old caulk out and we will put new in. So I do this and then notice that the valve is leaking where you turn the water on and off. I’m like hey babe cant caulk the shower if this thing is leaking….and he says yep I will fix it. We had one of those stand up showers with the one knob to turn it to hot or cold. Well the screw was stripped so we had take the knob off and replace the screw. Picture this people!!! He goes to tighten the right screw one and it breaks because it is all rusted out from water damage. He gets the old screw out and replaces it with a new one. He goes to the left one….. goes to tighten it with his screw gun….Boom!!! The the shower nozzle piece busts off and water is shooting out everywhere. My husband is in the bathroom screaming and I thought he like hurt himself. Imagine a fire hydrants when they open them into the road how far and hard it sprays….. it was everywhere people. He comes flying out of the bathroom soaked and runs downstairs to the basement to shut off the water lines. Much to his surprise he is turning off water lines everywhere in the house….except the bathroom. So we are yelling downstairs saying its still coming out. He goes to the main shut off and the handle twist off because its so rusted. It gets better next he has to crawl under our house. We own a house built in the 1890’s so the bathroom was probable just a small poarch….so there is a crawl space for the house….he jumps in there to finally turns off the water. He comes back upstairs covered in mud….Kait and I are laughing so hard. I wanted to take a picture but he was already calling us dicks for laughing at him. I cleaned up all the water and he was like guess we are redoing the bathroom.
Now that we got that fun story out of the way…we are still redoing the bathroom. I started by taking the shower out and then Chris had to remove the base. The floor was squishy from water damage. We knew it was getting damaged because the spout was leaking but we really didn’t know how bad it was till the shower walls came off.
After taking apart the shower paneling we knew the walls had to go as well.
I didn’t get pictures of the other walls but they were just as bad as the picture about. I also did not get pictures of the floor, they were definitely rotted out though the tile was coming right off the floor. After pulling some tile off with my hands you could feel how squishy the floor was in some spots. This was not just from the water that busted out of our shower….this has been a process over years that was never fixed properly. The worst of it was that the support beams in our house were half the size that they were when this add on was built. Now we had a few options at this point. We could buy new support beams. A steel support beam could cost anywhere from 1500 and up. A wood support beam could cost 900 or up for what we needed. Not just one beam but two….so imaging how pissed we were to find this out….but hey….this women had an idea. I know nothing about building stuff but the internet is filled with vast knowledge. I put in a quick search google looking for alternative ways to fix or replace. First we made the support beams supportable by bracing together the wood to the old beams….making them wider and with more support beam. This obviously is not a correct way to do this…so do not take my advice on fixing support beams. It worked for us….but we didn’t actually need to replace the whole beam since only the half under the shower to where the tile was is rotted out. He braced the beams to make them stronger in the corners. Whoever built this addition did not take the time to make sure things were done properly. Once that was done replaced the flooring and then started making plans for what was next.
Our bathroom would cost us anywhere from 5,000 to 8,000 for someone to come in to do it is costing us like 3,000. Yeah my husband is dope as shit. The man has been installing flooring since he was 14 years old. He started off in his grandfathers store just doing carpet and linoleum. He said for the last 15 years he has been doing tile, self taught. I asked him how that possible. He said when someone says I have 250 houses that need tiled bathrooms and you want to make over 85 thousand a year you learn. So the man learned how to do tile in Florida in a big housing development. An he is good at it. He is precise, he is fast, he has layouts in his head that look good. Apparently he does plumbing too. Chris moved pipes in our bathroom to better accommodate what he had in store for the bathroom. Which was a not a big issue because whoever did the plumbing in the house had it so messed up. The man says sometimes you have to be a plumber on the job for customers…and that’s okay….he doesn’t mind.
My husband has grand visions for these things….this is his job. He not only lays flooring, he builds showers for a living in lake houses, single family homes, dorms. You name it he does it. So he envisions how the lay out is going to work and I get to help assisting with the colors and whatever else I am capable of. So far we have the floor laid in the bathroom, and half the shower. Let me tell you something about being an installer….this shit is for the birds. I have a seriously new found appreciation for what he does…it really wouldn’t seem that hard laying tile. Thing is though you need to measure twice cut once baby. Oh but then he explains to me that we need to use a wet saw to cut the tile it makes it easier. I didn’t use the thing its seriously like a table saw but it has water running up to it to allow the tile to be cute with out chipping or breaking. He says most people have bathrooms on the second story….imaging not cutting enough off and missing your mark. You have to run all the way back downstairs to cut it, then all the way back upstairs to put it on the wall. An its not like you can just cut them all the same….especially if you want to do certain patterns. I carried boxes of tile in for my husband. Each box weights about 75 lbs. I carried in four boxes…and I’m dying. Yes laugh if you will but those things are fuckin heavy. I did the grunt work.
He is holding these ten pound tiles in his hand slapping on mud, and just with ease putting then on the wall. Um I feel sorry for his help also….because if I wasn’t his wife he would have killed me for some of the things I did. He told me to make him some more mud….it was four o’clock he wanted to finish up the four or five tiles he had left. I’m going to tell you right now when your husband say fill the bucked up about a 1/8th of the inch full of water….you listen. Okay ladies and gents. I’m not sure if you know this because I did not….it makes a shit ton of mud. You want a nice thick consistency….thicker then cake or brownie mix. Like when you don’t add enough water or oil and your brownies are thick….that’s how you want your mud. Well so you see what happened is I sort of filled it almost half full. We don’t want the bucket that full when we only have four or five tiles left to lay.
We still have a lot of bathroom to finish. Still need to put the shower head in nozzle in. Vanity needs to go in the right space. Also we now have to call the city to get our water shut off at the road so that we can fix our main shut off valve and the pipe that goes to the sink….that’s broke as well.
Just so you all know those little wedges on the wall are wedges…they are wedged into spacers to keep your lines nice and straight. These little tiny black pieces cost $75 for a box of 200. You may think hey that’s a sweet deal….but its not. The bathrooms that my husband does usually takes more then 200 spacers. Also apparently they are shipped from Italy…so yeah super expensive. You can get cheaper one around your area, my husband just say these one work the best. This is our shower in the making. Putting the pipes and tub in. Making the wall, then tiling it the floor and the walls and the shower.
Lesson to be learned from this so far. Get a inspection!!! We did not we really didn’t have a choice we were looking for a place to live for six months and needed something for all of our kid. So we bought a house…if we got an inspection we never would have bought the house. Make sure when your doing a home project you consult professionals if you don’t know what you are doing. Map out what you are willing to spend on a project like this. Also when your husband tells you 1/8th the way full….you better fucking listen!
Stay tune…we may not have it finished anytime soon…..so please keep reading to see the final bathroom!!! Octavia signing off.