Still Learning, Part 2


Are you ready to jump back into my plumbing nightmare?  Dont' worry, it's got a happy ending (so far). Check out part 1 here if you haven't already. ... I waited for the plumber to show up, and in the meantime, checked around the house again to assess the damage.  The ceiling in the laundry room had one corner with a new stain, clearly from that morning's watery escapades: I feared the worst, but was still very pleased that I could expect a plumber in just a few hours to fix what … [Read more...]

Still Learning, Part 1


This is SO not how I saw this morning going. I woke up around 6:30 am to get ready for work.  And noticed the smell I'd caught a whiff of the night before was stronger.  It was a kind of smoky smell, which I'd first dismissed as dirty laundry (occasionally I find myself in a smoky bar or two, so had just assumed I'd forgotten to throw a t-shirt in the giant laundry pile and had instead peeled it off in my closet... which is unlike me, but still possible).  So, I started investigating. If … [Read more...]

Here and There

It's no secret that I scatter from project to project.  I've been doing really well at focusing on my entryway, but it doesn't stop me from randomly selecting other parts of the house to tweak when I have a few spare minutes.In the master bathroom, I've begun dry fitting the tile.  DIY tip: even in a small bathroom like mine, dry fitting is a good idea.  "Dry fitting" is when you lay down each of your tiles to figure out the exact pattern and see what kind of cuts you're going to need to make … [Read more...]

More Work in the Master

Dad and Tony came by again last weekend.  You may remember that on their last visit, I learned a new vocabulary word.  One that I probably could have gone my whole life never knowing and still have been fulfilled.This time around, the linoleum was out, the floor cleaned up, and we were ready to roll with putting down the hardibacker and picking out a tile layout.  We had plenty of hardibacker in the garage thanks to the last time we needed some (and I still have more for the kitchen when it … [Read more...]

A Few Good Plumbing Lessons from Dad


In one week, I had to fix both a blockage in my new upstairs toilet and a leak from the sink in the vanity.  Considering that the guest bathroom is really the one fully functioning bathroom I have in the house (the master bath is still unfinished and the powder room downstairs doesn't have a tub), I was beyond frustrated at the thought of getting so close to a finished room only to have it yanked away.Plumbing is definitely not my strong suit, and it kind of intimidates me.  So I rely on people … [Read more...]

What the Frass?!

dirty legs

If I were to be asked, "What's the nastiest thing you've encountered from working on your house?"  I would have always thought my answer would be about the press-on fingernails we found in the fridge (and in the closet, and in the garage, and in the carpet) when I moved in.  Or that the kitchen was so dirty, oven cleaner had to be used on the countertops and the ceiling was orange (likely from years of chain smoking by the previous owner).  Or the disgusting and caked-on dirt found behind the … [Read more...]

Guest Bathroom Reveal

guest bath reveal

AKA:  The only bathroom that is now fully functional upstairs.  Except for the fact that it's missing the door.  But so what, if you consider that the only person who might see me using it is the dog?  Don't worry; I will close the bedroom door for her so I don't scar her.  Because using the toilet with the dog sniffing around is just weird, you guys. This post got off to a strange start.  My guest bathroom is finally ready to use!  How freaking awesome is that? There are still a few more … [Read more...]

Grumble Grumble

I hope you had a great Thanksgiving.  And I'm very happy to report that thanks to the Black Friday sale, I have a new best friend helping me finish a few projects:My shower in the guest bathroom is finally ready to actually take a shower in, but not without a near hissy fit this weekend.There are several truths of DIY I've learned over the years, and installing this showerhead was simply a reminder of them:Use the right tools.Caulk hides a multitude of sins.When all else fails, tape the … [Read more...]