Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Renovation! Wait... no... Just Painting.

One thing about having a house is that it's never really done. Ever. And things are always getting old and falling apart. Our house is full of these things, which we usually put in the "we'll fix that when we renovate" which is code for "five or ten years when we finally put a deck on and do whatever else it takes to make the deck attach nicely to the house". Steve also hopes that we might make the kitchen slightly bigger in the process, so as to accommodate a dishwasher, which is something that I'm not opposed to.

Anyway, we've done bits and pieces, but we were taking a break from renovating for a while. The downstairs toilet had stopped working at least eighteen months ago, maybe longer, and we just attributed it to being old and broken and didn't really bother about it. So low on our list of things we cared about it, and it seemed like a first world problem. I mean, we already have a working toilet in the house, so do we really need the other one? 

Then the brand new washing machine started to not really work so well. I got a washing machine guy in who told me it wasn't the washing machine, so then we got a plumber in to look at things. Turns out the pipes were rusted and thus no water was even getting through. The good news was that fixing that would actually fix the downstairs toilet too, because, as it turns out, the toilet wasn't actually broken, it just wasn't getting any water. 

Now that the toilet was working again, we started using it again. Especially with toilet training kids, it was way easier to access from outside then running up the stairs and into the house to get to the one in the bathroom. But now that we were using it more, I was also noticing something else. 

It was really dirty. The walls and floor, even though they had been cleaned, were just gross. The walls were a dark green colour, which didn't help because it made the small toilet space feel even smaller and dirtier than it was. The floor was a white paint that was coming off to show previous layers of yellow and green; also not attractive. 

So I decided to paint. I guess it was just a first world problem, but paint isn't too expensive, and it would make a huge difference. 

I wish I had more before photos, but I didn't think to take them until I had taken out the cistern, puttied the holes, sanded the walls and cut in the first coat.

It was serious business.

Incidentally, Rachel helped me putty that big hole on the right. When I mentioned it to Sophie and asked her if we should paint the bathroom, she suggested just building a bigger bathroom. I like her dreams, but it just wasn't practical. Then she suggested painting it pink, which was a suggestion I disregarded pretty quickly as well.

Here it is after an undercoat and two coats of beautiful white paint. The work of one weekend. So empowering and shiny. Of course, the shiny-ness of the newly painted white walls really highlights the old-ness of the old paint trims (around the window, door frame and the door itself). Not to mention the floor.

The floor, which now looked so revolting that I started scraping the paint, and took three children to Bunnings to get a tin of cement paint.

Here is Steve getting to it with the gurney, which was much faster, but with some sad side effects. The white paint came up but some of the gurney action splashed up on my newly painted walls, so now I have to do some patch up work on my paint job. It also made the laundry area really flooded.

And the paint that was scraped up got washed outside and then re-stuck itself down. We don't really know what to do about that. My goal was to have the toilet finished by Rachel's birthday next Friday, but I don't think I'll make it. The floor really needs to be scrubbed back some more, and cement paint takes a lot longer to dry enough to walk on. Maybe in the holidays.

I installed that new toilet roll holder too, btw. The kids helped. Hugo was in charge of holding the allen key, which he was particularly excited about and went about pretending to tighten things. Then, as I was changing drill bits, I heard an "Uh oh": Hugo had put the allen key in the hole that I'd been drilling and it had fallen into the wall. He was pretty insistent that I get it out again, but there was none of that happening. Part of the wall, part of the ship.

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