Demolition + Downton

March 5, 2012

First of all, I’m so sorry to anyone experiencing site problems in the last 24 hours.  Long story short, I’m trying to switch servers to save money but everything is not going according to plan, so thanks for your patience.  Also, I appreciate so much those who have already volunteered to come to the three day event in April for the Alma Project, and also to those who have donated so far.  We do need to raise money, so please read all about our ambitions here and we’d appreciate if you can donate what you can, it’s for a great cause!

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Now let’s get down to business.  The weekend was spent demolishing the vanity side of the hall bathroom I’ve been meaning to remodel for oh, three years now.  Saturday morning began with the official clearing out of the cabinets and true confession time, I haven’t completely cleaned out this cabinet in *hanging head in shame* six years.  How do I know it’s been six years?  Because look what was discovered at the way back: a first response pregnancy test kit and ovulation predictor.  TMI?  I’m sorry, it’s just the truth.

mr cg first response


After clearing out the cabinet and its embarrassing contents, it was time to pull down the mirror. When you’re working with glass you must exercise extreme caution and you should use vacuum cups like these for very large pieces.  Ours was held up with two brackets and some adhesive, but with some gentle prodding we were able to get if off and carefully move it out of the bathroom. Carefully being the key word!

remove mirror


Next came time to do the thing I’ve been dreaming of for years – ripping out the yellowed cultured marble countertop.  I really don’t have anything against the more modern cultured marble countertops in shades of white, they have certainly come a long way, but this one was a weird yellowish color that frankly reminded me of the color of an armpit sweat stain on a white dress shirt and it had to go.


remove countertop

And I had to strike a pose to commemorate the occasion.

kate and countertop

I can’t believe I just posted that picture of myself on the internet.

Now before you go and rip out your cabinet vanity do something very very very smart.  Turn.Off.The.Water. to your home.  It’s a necessary step before you mess with the plumbing.

turn off water

Disconnect the plumbing by consulting plumbers you know or various online sources (but if you’re unsure or nervous or don’t want an emergency on your hands – absolutely hire a professional).  I failed to document it fully, I left it to my dude but he’s a handy guy so he figured it out and we were ready to seal off the plumbing and pull the cabinet out.

pull out vanity


And I was left with this blank canvas on Saturday night.

bathroom blank canvas

Yippee cayey!

So Sunday morning I analyzed the situation and came to several conclusions.  One, new light fixtures are absolutely 100% necessary.  That ceiling needs a lot more jazz and the over-the-mirror thingamajig shall be kicked to the curb donated to ReStore to be replaced by two chrome sconces flanking a new smaller mirror.  Amen.

new light fixtures


Two, I need to repair the floor tile and take it all the way to the wall, but thankfully I have the pieces to do it.

patch floor tile

Three, it’s time to make some tile choices for the wall and I’ve narrowed down the selections I was agonizing over to these five finalists.  As you can see they all complement the pattern in the tile floor but there is one that stands out to me.

tile choices

It’s the blue glass offset pattern tile closest to my fuzzy slippers.  There will be a lot of white and chrome so it will bring color and I think be the most timeless choice, plus I’m a sucker for watery blue glass tile and it’s the least expensive since it’s literally off-the-shelf from Lowes.  Shocking I should return to the simple off-the-shelf glass tile from Lowes after having visited 67,592 tile shops in my local area in the past month.

Quick story.  So as I stood there in my fuzzy slippers on Sunday comparing tile samples in the morning light coffee cup in hand and then turned to my beloved and told him everything I was thinking about each and every sample in great detail (it took at least five minutes) and he stood there so patiently listening to me on my second cup of coffee talk about tile (that’s when you really know you are loved) and then I asked him what he thought about all the selections.  My mister replied with one question, “Which one’s the least expensive?”  And I told him it was the glass offset brick pattern tile that I really did like so much and he replied “Well you said the magic words.  That’s the one I like.”  Raise your hand if your spouse is like that.

Changing subjects now to go with the title of this post.

If you follow me on Twitter you know I started Downton Abbey (on Netflix) on Friday night and I’m only up to Episode Six in the first season, but it’s so so so so fantastic! Honestly, nothing on TV compares and I’m upset I didn’t start watching it a long time ago and I wish the characters were all real because I just want to be a fly on the wall at Downton Abbey for the rest of my life.  Here are my impressions of characters so far.

downton abbey cast

Am I right?  Will Matthew get the girl?  Will the staff finally accept Mr. Bates? What is Edith’s problem?  No, don’t tell me.  DON’T tell me anything!  I am savoring every single episode, my mister and I are HOOKED!  Watching Episode 7 tonight, can’t wait!

Coming up, the little change that made a big difference!  I’m talking about that vanity we pulled out of the bathroom, will show you next.



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