Let the Dust Fly
I predicted on Friday that this weekend would be a weekend of great accomplishment. For once, my psychic aspirations were realized.
In fact, I have so much to show you that I must resort to thumbnails.
Recall the bathroom before and more before this weekend. One sliced finger (mine), a bit of blood-splashing (mine), and many hours of labor later (mostly Darwin's), all the tile in the main part of the bathroom is gone, bashed out and carted away to the garbage bin. The aforementioned toilet is on the patio with the tank cleaned. All that gray stuff you see on the floor? Yeah. That's concrete. It's all over the walls, too, behind the tile. But I'll get to that later.
After Darwin finished bashing the tile, he was pretty tired, but I wanted some more action. There's a cabinet in the corner of the bathroom that I've known would have to go from the beginning. The bathroom is too teeny and compartmentalized right now, and we (okay, I ... Darwin actually could not care less) want it to be more open, so the clawfoot tub will be more visible.
I applied the same inefficient tools we used on the tile - two hammers - to the wood frame and drywall. I admit Darwin had to help me, especially at first, because the embarassing fact is I had no idea what I was doing. Demolition looks so easy on TV! Of course, they usually have handy things like crowbars and sledgehammers.
But eventually, over the course of Saturday and Sunday, the closet succumbed to the wrath of Kristin.
After that, to Darwin's horror, I still wasn't ready to quit. I enticed him from his position on the sofa by banging on stuff with hammers until he couldn't stand it anymore and had to come see what I was doing.
I wanted to remove the tub, but Darwin wasn't sure how to deal with copper plumbing. Turns out, though, that he only had to remove the faucet and stuff and didn't actually have to turn off the water or mess with the pipes.
Then he laid into the wall between the former closet and the tub. Apparently, the way to tile in the '60s was to attach concrete slabs - reinforced with steel mesh - to the studs, then lay tile on top of that and drywall above. After much finagling (aka, hammering and sweating and struggling), Darwin got the whole section of concrete/tile to break away from the studs. Hurray!
But oops. We still couldn't get the tub out because the concrete/tile rests on top of the tub edge, and there are still two more walls of tile to deal with. We were hoping to salvage these walls, but from the looks of it, they'll have to go. I guess we're going to just play it by ear on the rest of the wall tile. I still need to look for matching tile at Home Depot and/or Lowe's because if we can't find a match, it's a moot point anyway.
And there's something else to consider. When we demolished the wall between the closet and tub, we discovered beadboard on the wall behind it. To Darwin's dismay, I did a little cutting on the moldy drywall in the back of the closet and found beadboard behind there, too.
So if we have original beadboard behind the drywall in the whole bathroom, all the way up to the ceiling (and it sounds from knocking on the wall like we do), maybe we wouldn't have to tile the walls at all. Hmmm ...
I know beadboard in the bathroom is sort of popular now. Does anyone know how well it holds up to shower areas? Of course, the clawfoot tub would have a shower curtain all the way around, but some water always leaks through.
By the end, we were both too worn out and sick of inhaling drywall dust to make any decisions, so we gave it up. On that bathroom anyway. We moved on to the half bath, and I framed some photos and scraped paint and baked cookies, and we cooked ourselves another real meal where we had to chop things.
All this in spite of the fact that Darwin was coming down with something and ended up with a fever last night. My husband is a hero.
And me? I'm tired today. I'll tell you more about the half bath tomorrow.