Saturday, November 8, 2014

Independant living

Not totally.  They're not that grown up, but they are looking forward to having their own rooms.  Their owns spaces to personalize. 

Beth and Laura have been sharing a room for years.  Before that, Laura and Alice shared, and before that Beth and Laura again.

Until moving out of their shared room in order for demolition to happen, Laura had never had her own space.  Now she shares a cramped space with all of the contents of the cold storage, a bedroom and a bath, a hallway closet and understairs storage.  It's full and a total mess, but she's alone for the first time.  By choice.

I think they miss each other though.  Beth is all the way upstairs while Laura remained in the basement.  

They borrow each other's clothes all the time, so it makes sense that they remain close.  And I do hope that they continue to visit with each other for nightime chats.  The new layout of their end of the basement looks like this:

And the current state?  So exciting!

This will be Laura's room.

Perhaps it's just a rectangle, but it will be HER rectangle.  And she has design plans that I won't reveal here.  Not yet.

Oh, and it's not just a rectangle.  It's a rectangle with a window she will be able to crawl through if she needed to (not to escape us - let's be clear about that!) and one with insulation in the walls for warmth, and in the floor for warmth and water barrier, and in the ceiling for sound.  It's cozy.

And it's also a rectangle with a closet.  Something she's never really had before either.  Not one of her own and not one without pipes running through it.

It's upside down right now, but this is an outlet that kind of excites me.  

Did you notice?  Two USB charging outlets.  Nice.  It is just above where her dropleaf desk will be installed.

Beth's room is not much bigger, but she has two things that I can't wait to see finished. 

The area above that stool will be a 7 foot desk surface.  With shelves spanning the wall above it.  She also has the USB outlets and will have under-shelf lighting for her desk.

Do you know why that is all exciting?  Because one day she will move out of the house and I will move my sewing machines there!  I'm not allowed to dream out loud about that too often because I don't want her to feel like I'm pushing her out of the house quite yet.  I'd really like her to stay home during her university years.

But still.  What a nice sewing room it will be.  I'm just saying.

But I didn't say that again.  I'm keeping my excitement hidden.

And this wall is going to be really quite awesome too.  

In the past we just shoved boxes under the stairs from the opposite side.  We had to stoop and climb between the furnace and hot water heater to get anything out of there.  Now it is a closet and drawers will be built between the studs.  No dresser required.

And the fabric you could stash there....No, I didn't say that out loud either.

And their room are only divided by the shared bathroom, so the sharing of clothes, accessories and late night sisterly chats can still go on.  It's all pretty cool.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Halloween 2014

No snow!  That was the big excitement for me this Halloeen.  Often we have deep snow, deep cold and puffy costumes.

Not this year.

Alice went as Alice-Backwards.  I loved the idea of that.  It looked better during the day when the face on her back was properly tucked in and her backwards shoes hadn't broken off.  And her friend went as a phoenix.   

I don't watch Adventure Time, but Beth went as Fiona.  I loved her hat and the knee-high socks were cute.  She didn't trick-or-treat but wore it all day at school. 

I was told that I was also a Fiona.  Fiona from Shrek, although I wasn't trying to look like an ogre.  Apparently that's what people thought though.

It hurt my feelings.  

 But don't worry. I've got tough ogre skin and grew up in a big family, so I'm over it already.

There were mixed feelings about the hair.  I hated the way it looked but really wanted to not look like myself this year.  At work everyone thought maybe I should die my real hair this colour because it was a good look.  Not gonna happen.  

My favourite this year was Laura though.  I mean, Luna Lovegood.  

All Value Village and homemade or scrounged from her own clothes, she's a great little magician. 

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

The new bathroom

Okay, so it's been a bit of a journey.  And now I know why no one blogs about bathroom renos.  They are not pretty.  It's not like taking pictures of an ugly light fixture and then replacing it with a beautiful chandelier.

This involves mud.  And concrete.  And dark, damp places.

Lovely as it was, we had to tear out this:

 To reveal some of this:

That beautiful copper pipe was sitting smack dab in the middle of the space that was to become the new bathroom.  It's had to design around a centre pipe.  It had to go.

And that standing water?  Not a good sign.

After days of breaking up old, thick concrete, the big plumber with the sore back told us that the copper had rusted away in places and the water had been draining directly into the soil under our floor instead of being whisked away through the pipe.  If we hadn't moved the water main, we wouldn't have known that and our basement would have flooded in time.  Good timing then.

And why did that big plumber have such a sore back?  Because the 2 days job was actually 5 days of jackhammering and carrying lumps of concrete and clay up the stairs (or out the window).  And then mixing heavy concrete and filling it back in. 

Now we have a sump pump (which has not once to our knowledge turned on because the water IS draining away through our new pipe) and a backflow preventer.  Both good things.  Ugly things, non-photogenic things but things that will keep our floors dry.

And the big pipe is now about 6 feet over, allowing us to have a bathroom and 2 bedrooms!  Yay! 

It's still not pretty, but 5 months later, this is where we are.

That's the corner where the toilet will go, and that's the shower that I can't wait to put into use.  There will be a light above the shower, and I sure hope the vanity lights will light up that toilet corner.  I have been assured that it will be fine.

The drywaller ran out of time today to finish the vanity area and the concrete-board areas above the shower.  We're still trying to think of creative ways to hide the water meter (which couldn't be moved) and the cleanout drain without blocking in the toilet.  

How do you search for that on Pinterest?  I'm getting nothing. We'll figure something out though.  It will likely be something custom built by our builder.  He seemed to have some ideas.

And the non-drywalled portion of this wall is going to be a built-in storage unit from IKEA. 

Two of these beside each other fill the space between two studs perfectly. 

Lots and lots of mudding and taping and then it'll be our turn to paint, tile and lay some flooring.  I can't wait!