Monday, September 5, 2016

Farmhouse Love Episode 1

Happy Fall Friends! I don't even know how it can be fall and I am still not unpacked. 

When we moved into this place I was immediately itching to change out the kitchen cabinetry hardware, and I'm talking baaaad.

All the hardware was wood and it was filthy, as wood tends to absorb dirt. I knew I wanted to install pulls that I could clean, and this was my first one.

The cabinet doors got plain brushed nickel knobs.

It's so much better now. The old stuff was making me twitchy.

It took me a couple days to do all of them, but it was so worth it. Immediate gratification.

It was also another way for me to put off the really big project that we really have got to tackle before it gets too cold outside for me to use my tile saw.

It's this bathroom. This is the original bathroom in the 1954 part of the house and it is in serious need of some TLC. It sits between the girls' bedrooms, but they haven't been using it for anything besides brushing their teeth and combing their hair because it's scary.

The toilet is of the perpetually flushing kind. If we wanted, we could give Ultimate Swirlies in this toilet.


The vanity is nothing unusual, just old. The sink is rusting and the medicine cabinet inside the mirrored unit is also rusting.

At first glance the tub surround doesn't look horrid, at least once I cleaned it, but upon closer inspection I found some problems.

Like this buckling tile. Once we get to demolition, my favorite part, I get some answers.

Lastly, the flooring really isn't flooring at all. It's a piece of carpet laid over the subfloor, which also needs attention.

Today was "D" Day. After I hauled the gnarly piece of carpet to the trash can, Peanut Head came in and pulled the vanity and toilet for me. And to my surprise, he didn't even exercise his expansive military vocabulary, despite all the banging I heard from the other room. 

As you can see from the picture, I also had a go at the tile above the vanity.

That was my little practice demo. I watched several You Tube videos this morning on removing tile, and I was pumped to get started.

I used a hammer, putty knife, and a pry bar. It was sort of fun, but messy.

I wasn't happy to find there was no cement backer board behind the tile, but honestly, I wasn't surprised either. It was adhered directly to the plaster walls, which is a big no no as there is no moisture barrier between the tile and the wall.

All the plaster has to come out all the way to the studs and we have to rebuild the surround with cement backer board. Well, Peanut Head has to rebuild the surround. I'll watch and make encouraging remarks.

This is why you need cement backer board. The wall with the fixtures was rotted, and the wall that received the bulk of the shower spray was also rotted at the base of the tub surround.

Can  you see the rusted mesh that the plaster adheres to? Nightmare.

That's pretty much all that got done today. I was sweating like a pig and making some very unladylike noises, but it feels good to have this project started.

Tonight is going to be an Aleve night. You young kids don't know what that is yet. Just be thankful for that.

I expect this project is going to take at least a month to complete, and that's probably an optimistic guess. It is soccer and cross country season, and we do have jobs to hold down.

Reality is such a buzz kill.

In other news, we've been adding to our furry friends since we have a little extra room. Meet what I thought was my new Tom Cat, Barnaby Tiberius Jones.

Turns out he's a she, so there were a couple weeks there where I was suffering from a gender identity crisis and just referred to him-her as Catlin Jenner.

Finally I accepted her gender and we agreed to name her Cecilia, or Ce-Ce for short. I can't even tell you how many times we have played Simon & Garfunkel's "Cecilia" as we sing it to Ce-Ce at the top of our lungs.

She thinks we're pretty crazy, but as you might have noticed by her napping posture, she's a pretty laid-back cat.

The chickens still refuse to use their Chicken Swing, although we're not about to give up on them.

We have some new baby Nigerian Dwarf Goats.

They think the girls are their Mamas and they cry for them constantly. It's maddening.

Zoe has been volunteering at the zoo all summer and she fell in love with goats. Go figure.

I have to admit, they are pretty cute. And they eat weeds, although not really all that fast if you ask me.

Zoe has been training them to walk freakishly on two legs. It's disturbing to watch. She's also been teaching them to jump through the course that Gunny used to run through, until she shut him down with that torn ACL.

Poor Old Man.

Sweets the Wonder Horse came to live with us a few weeks ago. His owners didn't have time to ride him and we happen to have two horse crazy girls who will dote on him, for however long he shall live with us.

Here he is having a Spa Day.

And on account of Sweets was being treated so grandly, two more horses that needed some girls to love on them are also staying for an undetermined length of time.

Welcome to the Scott Horse Spa. This is PJ. He's having braids put in today. I don't think he's too keen on the braids, personally, but he does think it feels good having someone play with his hair.

They even braided his little raccoon tail.

All three boys had horsey baths today, shampoo and all. PJ wasn't especially fond of the bath, but he does like the way his braids feel because he can flick them around when he talks like a Valley Girl.

Bo is much more manly and prefers that his picture not be taken while he is sporting the braids. This picture was taken right before Stinkerbell exercised him, which makes me laugh because I think she got more exercise exercising him than he got being exercised.

So as you can see, we are expanding and thriving. I hope to be posting a little more regularly with the progress on the bathroom. This is the stuff I live for. It's so much fun!


  1. Our bathroom is just about in the same place as yours but we didn't have carpet. I sympathize and look forward to your finished pics!

    1. Are you racing the quickly changing weather too? That part is nerve wracking.

  2. Well, I love Episode One, especially Caitlyn Jenner the cat. I'm looking forward to Episode Two!

    1. With as much work as we need to do to this house, Helen, I'll be posting forever. It's good to have goals, right?

  3. Your mother was relegated to the bathroom your girls won't use. Oh, well. It was a wonderful visit. But, my grandmother was named Cecilia and you named your cat after her. What's with that. The goats. What do you think a vet will charge to repair their ACL's? Just wondering:-) Love MOM

    1. You know they are both chicken butts, Mother. Cecilia was the only name that fit. Maybe she is your grandma reincarnated. The goats are young and time is on their side. I'm not worried about them. Zoe will be at college before they are elderly.