Monday, May 30, 2011

The Bathroom Update

Oh, I wish I had more to tell you. Like 'the bathroom is done.'

But alas, at this point almost 2 weeks after a drip of water fell on my head--well, we have almost finished a complete demolition of our bathroom. The only thing left to do on the demo is to remove the floor.

Highlights of the process so far:
  • On Saturday Eric took a ton of rubble to the dump. A real TON--2,000 pounds of plaster, lathe, paint, tile and mortar. From a 6 x 9 bathroom. Seriously, our house is solidly built. We marvel at the men who built our house in the 1920's--the time and materials it took, the skill needed to do a quality job.
  • Our friend Terrance came over on Friday night and helped to remove the remaining walls, closet-thing, and the tub. The best part of that night was Eric and T throwing the steel tub off the side of the house while our sweet elderly neighbor watched. There's never a dull moment at the Beuker house!


What's next?
Hopefully we can get the floor up quick--because we really can't do any sort of planning on the room until we talk with our plumber and see how/if we can move things and how much it will cost. I have been told a few times that moving plumbing lines is easy, moving refuse lines is not.

Between now and then?
Well, there is a layer of dust that covers my whole house. So if you're coming over, you will be able to write your name on the top of my piano, window frames, fish tank and mantle.
I'm going to try to refrain from pacing the house, muttering incoherently, and pulling my hair out remain calm. Some days are better than others. This bathroom project is already driving me nuts!

We take any and all volunteers. Anytime.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

It Starts with a Drip of Water

Sunday morning I was standing in my kitchen making coffee when a couple drips of water fell onto my head.

This not a totally unexpected development in our house. Our plumber had already fixed a leak coming from the soap dish in the shower a couple of times, but had warned us that this would continue to be a problem until we redid the bathroom. Over the course of time our house has settled and caused our bathtub to become un-level. The leak will continue to worsen until we can fix it (by leveling the tub). Personally, any leak that affects two rooms is bad enough already. Add to this the fact that we have some growth on the ceiling that we haven't been able to kill, probably a good deal of rotted, wet wood behind the bathtub tile and that we just don't like the ugly tile floor.

So after a consult with our plumber about the issue, we decided it was just time.

And now our upstairs (and main bathroom) looks like this:

We are demolishing the bathroom all the way back to studs. We are removing the tile walls and floor, plaster walls and ceiling. This bathroom has not been renovated since it was built, so under that floor tile is a layer of cement. The tub is iron--I never knew that tubs were iron. We plan to replace the window and change the plumbing a bit. And hopefully not discover some sort of construction nightmare while doing it all.

Now we have many things to be thankful for:
  • First, and foremost, we have minimal water damage to the kitchen. In fact, if we really wanted to we could be perfectly content ignoring it. Or slapping a coat of paint on it.
  • Second, we have a second full bathroom in our house, down in the basement. Until now, Eric had been using it as a storage extension of his woodshop. But today he took the time to clean it up--so I don't feel disgusting using it.
  • Third, we have a seriously willing worker in Josh. The kid is happy to swing a hammer or a sledge hammer and break tile. He is also enthusiastic. That makes this a bit more enjoyable. But added to that, I am feeling upbeat, maybe even encouraged, despite the onslaught of a major home improvement.
  • This was not totally unexpected. We had considered doing this earlier but had decided not to because it cost too much. But at least we had thought about it. We had the beginnings of a plan of action in our heads.
  • Finally, we can and still will use our existing toilet and sink. They are pretty cool and were originally pretty costly. So we're saving those. We can save a bunch of money by doing a lot of work ourselves and we have many friends with a variety of skills.
But this comes at an interesting moment in our family's life. We are answering a call God has put upon our life. We are in the beginning stages of adopting two orphans from Africa. So right now we don't have money to spare for a project like this. We also don't have a great deal of spare time to put into this big a project and we have a deadline--5 weeks to finish major construction.

God is like that though, isn't he? He puts a call on your life and then allows obstacles. I truly believe this is just one of those obstacles, but through it God will shine. He will receive glory. Why? Because we can't do this without his intervention--in terms of time, money, encouragement, friends to help. The combination of factors is far beyond our means.

So the story begins with a drip of water.
It concludes with God receiving glory and praise for his provision, timeliness, and perfection of His plan for our lives.
I can only imagine what he's going to do in the middle.