Monthly Archives: June 2010

Bathroom renovation: the saga continues

I finally got the counter top glued up last week. It took a lot of prep work, practice gluing, and help from Peter to finally get it done. I forgot to snap a shot in the completely clamped stage. At this point I’ve already removed the vertical clamps that kept the boards relatively flat.

Once it was cut to size I did a test fit in the bathroom. I didn’t want to cut out the holes for the sinks then find out the top didn’t fit.

Another test fitting after the first sink hole was cut. Once the second hole was cut, there was a lot of sanding, more sanding, some planing, more sanding and finally varnishing (3 coats), then installation.

I admit, this shot is for morale boosting. It’s staged. The counter top is officially installed, as are the cabinets, but not the sinks and faucets. I wanted to get an idea of the finished product, just to make sure my vision was matching up with the results. It is, so far.

It was very difficult to take apart the pretty staging to prep for the wall tile. I removed the sinks for better access, protected the glossy counter top with cardboard and installed tile backing board.

The glass tile is now installed and awaiting grout. The final stages are now approaching. I still need to make the wood trim to edge the wall tile and counter top, build three mirror frames, install two more towel rods, and complete the installation of the sinks and faucets. One week, maybe two, with some breaks. Very exciting!


Building a new garden where a garden previously existed will often lead to the appearance of volunteers; seeds left dormant in the old garden, brought to the surface by the turning of the soil into the new garden. When I built the herb garden last year (or was it early this year) I expected seeds from the old bronze fennel plant to pop up, but this big sprawling plant was unexpected. It’s obviously a member of the curcubit family, but I’m not sure which one.

It’s definitely not pumpkin or cucumber,although they were the more likely sources of seed. I had grown cucumber in the adjacent garden space, and I had left a rotten pumpkin outside the mud room door for a while giving the squirrels an opportunity to do what squirrels do best, lose their seed caches.

My best guess at this point is some kind of melon. The flowers just don’t have a squash look to them. I’ll just have to wait and see. If it ends up being something tasty, I may do some seed saving, since it is doing astonishingly well.

Another volunteer appears to be a pepper plant. Not too much of a surprise since I grew a few varieties here before. I’ll just have to wait to see what the plant produces.

It’s always helpful to really know your plants when weeding, otherwise most of these interesting volunteers would have ended up as compost, instead of filling out a lush herb garden.

Bathroom renovation: week "I have no idea"

Last week, I set out to get the counter top made and tile the floor in the bathroom. The tiling and grouting was finished, but the counter is not yet complete. The weather turned very hot, making working in the garage rather difficult. However, Peter, who was taking some vacation days, did help me joint and rip the boards needed. Now I have to glue it up.

This week, with the tiling done, I tackled the trim. I installed all the baseboard trim and door trim, much of which has been missing since we moved in. After painting it, I reinstalled the toilet. I even changed the doorknob on the closet door to match the metal finish of the rest of the bathroom. The final look is really coming together.

It feels so good to erase the evidence of the previous owner. It won’t be completely gone, the shower will remain the same, but now the shower tiles don’t clash with the wall color. The bathroom now has a clean calming feel to it.