Monday, October 29, 2012

Moving on

Okay, I'm still in total love with the new bathroom, but I'm sure everyone is sick and tired of hearing about it. So onto other topics.
   This morning there was an earthquake about 40 miles from Memphis. It happened a little after 7:30 am and was not too much shaking, but just enough to be weird. It was as if a semi came up the driveway and lasted about that long. Weird.
I added a pocket
    In the last post, I mentioned I was asked to teach a class making Amy Butler's Barcelona Skirt at Sew Memphis, the groovy new sewing shop in Midtown. Since it is important for the instructor to know more than the students, I made the skirt. It is pretty cool.  In my haste to complete the skirt, I failed to try it on and need to take it in at the waist a bit. I should know better.
   As I also mentioned somewhere, I entered a quilt in a show to be held in Cincinnati and received notice today it did not make the cut. Boohoo...... Oh well, at least I entertained myself while constructing it and that's what really matters to me these days. It has the block letter quilting (love) on it. 
   Other things are in the works for the near future and I will file maybe not so full reports on that as the time comes. One of the activities will be my new position as communications officer for MACA in 2013. I was honored to be asked, as well as slightly bemused, because I am not the most computer savvy gal in town. But I figured (at first thought), it's just posting on the Yahoo group and updating the FB page. Then (horrors) I remembered the website!!!!! Thankfully someone already built it, but now I will responsible for updating it. All I can do at this point is to look on this venture as a learning experience and beg for help from others I know who would be willing to impart their knowledge to me. Stay tuned, boys and girls........

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Bathroom again

As promised, here is a picture of the new light fixtures. The newspaper on the mirror is staying until the painting is finished.
  And yes, I will move on from this project to some other endeavors, especially art work. November 10 and 11 is the Memphis Tour of Fine Craft. It will be an open studio concept and is being presented by the Memphis Association of Craft Artists, of which I am a member. I have volunteered to be a hostess at the different venues and am looking forward to seeing all the art, watching demonstrations by various artists, and meeting people touring the studios.
 That same weekend, I am teaching a class at Sew Memphis making a simple A line skirt. Sew Memphis is the new fabric shop in midtown and I am honored to be a part of their mission to promote sewing as a life skill to the next generation.
   Sewing has always been a huge part of my life since childhood and that skill has provided a roof over my family's head and put food on the table for us. (For various reasons, I was never able to get a proper education, so I had to rely on the knowledge that was available to me.) In my later years, sewing has given me a way to express myself creatively. Hopefully, the arthritis that is currently plaguing my fingers, will not put a complete damper on the fun and relaxation I get from sewing. I'd cross my fingers for luck, but that really hurts some days.
   Stay tuned for new and wonderful projects.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Almost finished

The bathroom project is nearly done. All that's left is the painting, so I need to get busy. Marty came by today to fix the closet door, which got jammed with all the hammering and banging around for the last two weeks. The light fixtures were installed yesterday and are just gorgeous!!! Photos tomorrow. All in all, this has been a very positive experience, despite all the inconvenience of washing up in the basement and hot footing it to Marion's for potty breaks during the day. Fortunately, she lives only one street over.
 The guys who worked on the project were very nice, professional and considerate. They didn't mind my picture taking, questions and general nosiness while they were toiling away. Little cat Jerry will miss Brian the most as he was in and out of the house a hundred times a day, cutting tiles or cement board or whatever, and she indulged herself by being on the other side of the door to her heart's content. You know how cats are......
   Most of my day was spent cleaning up the wreckage in the breakfast room and hallway and getting the old toilet to the street. It was still working, and before I could get a sign on it to that effect, somebody came by and took just the lid to the

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Bathroom Redo

Brian hard at work

shower floor before grout

loving the tiles outlining the window

I just HAD to see how the teak bench would look

the grout made such a big difference

new potty

same vanity--but I like it
The renovation project is coming along quite well. It's nearly done and I will be so happy to have a real shower soon!! All that's left is the painting and today I put primer on the drywall. The plumbing fixtures are in and we need to wait for the grout and sealer to be really cured. There was a tiny hiccup today. The water faucets on the sink suddenly stopped working. I don't know what the problem is, so the plumber will have to take a look at it.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Bizzy Weekend

There was lots to do this past weekend. Most of Friday afternoon I spent with the plants and cleaning up the big mess I made in the kitchen. Friends dropped by with cheese in the early evening, which we accompanied with wine and crackers from the pantry. What's not to love about an impromptu happy hour?
  Saturday morning was spent way out east buying a teak shower bench, getting magazines at the bookstore, then laying in supplies at Costco.
  My grandson spent the night and that is always a treat. Sunday started off with pancakes, then bike riding, and after that we went to the river for a picnic. Vincent decided it would be better to get Taco Bell than make sandwiches, etc. I agree. Even though it was chilly and breezy, we had great fun tossing rocks in the river.
  Sunday evening I attended the second annual Trashion Show, benefiting  the Memphis City Beautiful Commission. Local shops and designers showed outfits created from recyclable items such as paper, plastic bags and the like. My friend who participated in the runway show, created an amazing set of wings constructed from bicycle parts and copper wire. What fun.

Alexis Grace as emcee

bike parts become art and fashion
cabin in the country

inside the cabin

what's for dinner?
  The weekend carried over to Monday with a trip to the country. A friend and I drove to visit our friend who introduced us to her friend who has rebuilt an old cabin on her property. Cute place, full of antiques and decorated to perfection. Her garden kicked butt and she has chickens! Big lunch, of course, then retail therapy at the Mennonite grocery store.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Reno and Indoor Yardening

Today was a good day. The guys who are working on the bathroom project got loads of work done. And while they were hard at work, so was I, getting the plants that have been outdoors all summer back into the house for the winter.
the big hole on the upper right is where the medicine cabinet will go
  The tiling is nearly halfway done and looks fabulous!! The soap dish and towel bars that were original to the 1934 redo have been reinstalled. The towel bars are really nice and I never saw any others that compared with them in my research of new tile accessories. Even though the toothbrush holder will never be used by a modern toothbrush, the old one just has so much charm and needs to be up on the wall with the soap dish, which will house shells from now on. It is too hard to clean if actual soap is in there. The soap dish for the shower had to go. It had become a petri dish--yuck.  The toilet paper holder was "glued" in so hard, it broke while the guys tried to get it out during the demo--boohooo.
  The black trim around the door and the top or the white tile is so nice. Marty showed me the tile for the floor of the shower today and I nearly fainted--hahaha--photos when that is done.

angel wing begonia

sanseveria with lovely variegations from the sun

speckled lily that thrived from outdoor exposure

xmas cactus does very well with a summer vacation
  While all this was going on, I cleaned off the shelves by the back door and brought in the plants that will not survive cold weather here. Now my kitchen is full of junk that I blithely put on those shelves all summer and I must toss or find homes for all this crap. I guess that is what I'll be doing tomorrow instead of fun stuff. Oh well, the plants will love me back all winter.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Bath Redo

the tiles showed up yesterday

bucket of blue stuff

cement board

the window of my dreams

cement board and dry wall
Here are other photos of the renovation. I would have put them on the post earlier, but realized they were still in the camera. The blue stuff is pretty amazing. Marty, the contractor's supervisor, said he painted a shoe box with this stuff, once upon a time, and filled it with water. Three weeks later, nothing had leaked out. I love a good story.
  The guys have been so nice to put the potty back before they leave. It has saved us from having to rent a port-a-potty. Bathing has been an experience. The basement is where I dye fabric and do surface design, so there is a laundry tub and faucet down there. That is where I am washing my hair and having a glorified boarding room bath, or "ho" bath, as some would say. Oh well, it's working for me.

Bathroom Redo Part Two

The project is coming along very nicely. The room was totally gutted except for the ceiling and floor, which was in good shape and I really wanted to keep the original tile floor. I love all the little hexagons and that kind of new tile is pricey.
 Once the floor under the tub was reconstructed, the plumber reworked the water pipes and installed the mixing valve. Then Brian, the tile guy, (who also does a lot of the construction work too) put in the cement board, a layer of "mud" and the plumber came back to install the new drain, which has been moved to the center of what will be the shower area. He also put in the waterproof membrane that continues a few inches up the wall and over the threshold. More "mud" on top of that, with a mini French drain (gravel) around the plastic parts. All the work you can't see is what appeals to me, because I know it's there to make the new bathroom safe and structurally sound.
 I have been watching "Holmes on Homes" on HGTV and DIY for months and was appalled at some of the sloppy, dangerous things "contractors" did to peoples houses. This old house will never be totally fixed to those standards, but at least the few renovations that have been done, have improved the quality of living here.
  They took out the old rotted window and replaced it with the window of my dreams. It is exactly how I thought it would look and functions like I want it to. 
what's left of old window

waterproof membrane

new window surrounded by cement board

shower floor with second coat of mud
  The drywall guy came after Brian finished mounting the cement boards on all the wall areas where the tile will go. This morning the drywall guy came back to put on a second coat of compound to cover the screws and seal the joints of the drywall. Everyone left early today--well not too early--to let all the mud and compound  and blue waterproofing dry sufficiently. Tomorrow the tiling begins and things will look even better.