I am the Queen, This is My Throne

When I first saw my powder room more than 2 years ago, I was disgusted. There was grime, old wallpaper, ugly laminate tile (not that all laminate tile is ugly, but this particular one was) and the most amazing and shocking faux marble sink I’ve ever seen.  Even in a house with 4 other people I seemed to be the only one motivated to rid our house of its arguably most ugly eyesore.  When my aunt offered to help me redo the bathroom as a gift, I was over the moon thrilled. She really knows what she is doing. She and her siblings completely rebuilt a house for my great aunt and uncle.  So she came over one day, handed me a hammer, and told me to get to smashing.

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After one of the most liberating smash sessions I’ve ever had, we went to a local chain called HOBO (aka Home Owners Bargain Outlet) to find some tile.  They sell short lots so everything is a good price, but what they have is what they have and other HOBOs don’t carry the exact same thing. She found the most glorious wall tile I’ve ever seen in real life. I love it so much I could hug it. Sometimes I go into the bathroom just to look at it. I chose the floor tile and I was a little worried that other people wouldn’t see how they went together like I did. We kept going full steam ahead while I inwardly doubted my choice.  Then my aunt showed up with two little cups of grout and finished up the floor tile. That was when I knew for certain I had made the right decision and everyone agreed. It just works together.  I was audibly relieved.

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Still riding the high of completing the floor, I decided that it was time to install the toilet that had been sitting in my garage for 2-3 months.  Removing a toilet is easy as pie and I’d been told installing one was just as easy.  So Alex and I hauled that porcelain beauty into the house and unboxed it. Never in my life have I been so happy to see a toilet. It came with instructions that, although poorly written (hose no include, anyone?), guided us through the rather easy process. The most complicated process was probably getting the bowl in place and making sure the wax ring was sealed properly. We slid the bolts along the groove in the blue ring in the floor.  These should guide the toilet into the right position.  We also placed the wax ring on the bottom of the bowl and pressed it firmly on so it would stick when we turned the toilet over.

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This is probably the most accurate depiction of the grout color.

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I was really apprehensive about this because there is no way to tell if you did the wax ring correctly before you have completely assembled the toilet.  Once the bowl was bolted to the floor, I did pour some water in to see if it leaked out anywhere, but it just stayed in the bowl. You are also supposed to do this so “sewer gasses” don’t leak up into your home. The rest was cake. We followed the directions and we were all ready to hook up the water and test it out when this happened.

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The original water hose was too short. For some reason I was unperturbed by this road block. It was a simple fix and we skipped over to Home Depot and picked up one of these:

Fluidmaster 12 in. Toilet Connector

It claimed that you needed “no tools” and promised “no leaks” and it made good on one promise. I did use a wrench to tighten the bottom nut, but so far there have been no leaks.  I am not sure why, but I have been shamelessly telling people that I installed a toilet when they innocently ask me what I did this weekend. I’m sure all they think they’ll hear is errands or family stuff. I can’t help myself. I almost whipped out my phone to show them pictures of my beautiful toilet. I didn’t show them, but I’m going to show you.  I’m in love.

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Our updated to do list:

Butt Hurt

You’ve all been sitting on pins and needles waiting to find out what paint color we settled on in this post, right?  Da-da-da-da! Dusky Blue aka the one on the left.

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We thought the other color, Heavenly Blue, was too baby-blue-in-your-face. We wanted something toned down, and relaxing.  When the paint dried it kind of took us by surprise because it was much brighter than we had anticipated.  It makes me feel pretty good about dodging the Heavenly Blue bullet because that would have been offensively bright. The cool part of it is that the nice blue makes the white trim and the dark wood doors POP.

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We bought the big 5 gallon bucket because we are painting the biggest areas of our house. I did not anticipate it being such a mess. Obviously we missed something.

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We still need to paint the stairwell and the upstairs hallway (scary tall ladders, ahoy!), but after that the next step is to organize and hang all of our pictures and art to make it feel like a homey home. I simply can’t wait. Maybe if I’m really lucky, I’ll have new floors by the summer. Oh, and about the title. If you are ever painting and need to use a stool or chair, alternate which leg you use to stand up on it. It’s a great gluteal workout, but I accidently only used the same leg again and again. Obviously I didn’t notice until the next day. No pain, no gain.

Are you working on any major changes in your home?

It’s a Date!

Here’s another installment of Katie-got-things-accomplished-this-Christmas! I have to admit that I’ve succumbed to the time-suck that is Pinterest. I had to work the days between Christmas and New Years and quite frankly there just wasn’t a lot for this old receptionist to do. So I just browsed Pinterest for a while. Then I saw something I liked and I wanted to pin it…so I joined. 6 boards later and I can’t stop. It doesn’t help that I just got a slow cooker and recipes are rampant on there, but I digress.

I pinned this calendar project.  It jumped out at me because I have been spending an inordinate amount of time looking at paint chips at Home Depot (convenient!).  I decided since the year was ending I would need a new calendar anyway so I got shopping.  I picked up the huge frame at Goodwill for $7 (you can still see the sticker in the upper left corner), hardware for about $4 and used some silver metallic spray paint I had on hand from another project so the total cost for this project for me was $13. 

I took what was already in the frame and just flipped it over.  You could cover it with paper or fabric too to change it up, but I was going for simple so I stuck with plain white.  I cut all my paint chips in half to make them closer to squares and spaced them out in an arrangement that looked pretty even.  I decided to go with a gradient, but my Pinterest mentor did hers with a coordinating color palette. I stuck the squares on with my glue gun and BAM! Calendar.

After having disassembled the frame, I took the wood out to the garage and spray painted it as evenly as possible. I let that cure during the glueing process.

Hanging it was another matter. The art that was originally in the frame hung portrait so all the hardware on it was going against me.  I picked up about $4 worth of hanging hardware from Home Depot (same trip I helped myself to the paint chips). I used painters tape as a template so I knew how far apart to nail the hooks. Pretty simple.

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So far, we all love it. I think it turned out pretty great especially since it was a little haphazardly planned. I like the dry erase aspect of it and it’s size. Hopefully it will help with my forgetfullness.