Archives for November 2005

The Day of All The Tile and Vomit

About six weeks ago, when Hubby was caught up in a mad tornado of swirling optimism, he sent me an email in the middle of the day that said, “You know, I think that we should stay home Thanksgiving, just the three of us, and maybe tile our bathroom. That would give us a project we could do together, and as an added bonus, we’d make the bathroom better, too.” Seeing as how we have a 2 1/2 year old little boy, I don’t know what was more insane: 1) that I agreed 2) that I saw no problem with attempting a Large Home Improvement Project with said 2 1/2 year old in the house 3) that I thought it would, in fact, be fun.

(Funny how the definition of “fun” changes with home ownership and parenthood – but that’s another story for another day.)

So I’ve found myself, over the course of the last couple of days, wondering Why In The World didn’t we let qualified professionals handle the whole tile thing when we built this house? Actually, “built” is a strong word…so let me re-phrase: why didn’t we let qualified professionals handle the whole tile thing when we selected this floorplan from several other options in our Planned Residential Community? If memory serves, we were concerned about every nickle we spent on this place…what with Hubby starting a new business and my not being gainfully employed and all, so we decided, in a fit of uncharacteristic reason, that we would do the tiling ourselves…save the $1300 that the builder wanted to tile both bathrooms (pennies, in retrospect. Pennies.)…and until the day of tiling arrived, we would live with linoleum that, as it came to pass, was really the lowest quality among all the low-quality linoleums.

It’s only taken us five years to get around to this project. But I’ve been kind of excited about it, because ever since Boo arrived, I haven’t really felt like our bathroom was ours. Because one bathroom is downstairs and one is up, and since we pretty much live downstairs during the day, it just became easier to put the young’un in our big tub, b/c, quite frankly, I could multi-task without venturing into irresponsible parenting territory. The problem with putting the child in our tub, however, is that our bathroom ceased being a sanctuary for me and was transformed into sort of a waterworld rumpus room. Instead of being my little haven, the bathtub turned into a storage facility, really, for the baby tub and vinyl Baby Einstein books and rubber duckies and whatnot.

A couple of months ago I decided that two years of exile was enough, thankyouverymuch, and I wanted to reclaim all of our formerly adult spaces. That included the den, which had enough wicker storage baskets filled with toys to put Pottery Barn to shame, and our bathroom…which by this point was covered in Sesame Street toothbrushes, water spots from enthusiastic splashing, and untold bottles of baby lotions, salves, potions and soaps. Time for a change. And that very night, Boo took his first bath in the upstairs tub, and his mama and daddy started to reclaim their space. Well, mainly Daddy started to reclaim the space…b/c someone had to watch the child, and that someone was me.

A couple of weeks ago Hubby painted and covered the Fine Flat Paint that all builders, for some reason, put in new houses, and it loses its luster (should that be “lustre”? Have I read too many British mysteries?) after approximately one day and then proceeds to look like the homeowners placed their palms on stamp pads and walked around hitting the walls in random places. Anyway, with new paint on the walls – time for the next step: tile.

I won’t go into all the details, but after no less than three trips to A Large Home Improvement Warehouse, Hubby looks defeated. His shoulders are hunched, his mood is gloomy, and his back is, as it were, shot. And remember the part about the tiling being “something we can do together”? Not so much. Because we forgot about The Boy Who Requires All The Watching. So the tiling has been a solo job, as has the parenting on this fine Thanksgiving weekend.

And to top it all off, our first child, a yellow lab, apparently ran into some bad turkey as she roamed the neighborhood in the middle of the night last night, because she has vomited. all. day. long. She vomited on the stairs, on the rug in the foyer, in the middle of the den, in our bedroom, in the dining room…basically, if you were to name any room on the first floor of this house, Maggie has baptized it in vomit today. If vomit is holy, then we are sanctified, because oh, did I mention the vomit?

I’ll try to post before and after pics later…of the tiling, mind you, and not the other thing.