(See? So small I couldn't even get a picture of it with the shower stall! The stall is to the left in this picture.)
So I did what any good wife would do: Give that bathroom to the Mister and take over the guest bathroom as my own.
This worked for a few years... until the guest bathroom shower curtain rod broke, and I was way too lazy to put the new one up. This meant showering in the gross stall, and that brings me to noticing the peeling.
I had noticed that the shower head pointed directly on the back tile, and where the water hit the grout was nearly gone. This is an old house, built in the 50s, so old grout isn't surprising. What most people do is regrout at some point. No one did, and we sure as heck haven't. We knew at some point we'd renovate the bathrooms, so we haven't done much with them.
Until last summer.
I love renovation shows such as Fixer Upper and Rehab Addict. I can binge watch reruns all day long. Sometimes, when the Mister isn't hogging the remote, we'll watch together. I should say that I watch, and he plays games on his ipad and somewhat pays attention to what's happening.
At this point in our lives, we had abandoned the master bathroom shower. Now we shared the guest shower, but Mister still used the bathroom and vanity part of the master bathroom. This is important information.
I don't know what it was about this particular episode of Fixer Upper. In fact, I don't even remember the actual episode. All I remember was Mister turning to me and saying, "we should demo the shower."
Y'all... I was scared. See, in our marriage, I'm the spontaneous one. I'm the one who has big, random ideas and usually Mister will knock them down. Either we can't afford it or it's too crazy.
So hearing my level headed husband say he wanted to tear out our master bathroom shower was terrifying and exhilarating! Oh god, we're screwed if one of us can't be the level headed one. Down the rabbit hole, we go!
Funny enough, he did the majority of the demo. I was just a happy hauler of crap. This is because the bathroom is so small, we couldn't both comfortably work in there together. Especially when someone is swinging a damn sledgehammer!
It started off innocently...
Remove the shower door, remove all the towel bars, remove weird shelving box that was too high to be very functional, remove toilet because husband smacked it with the sledgehammer and then because he was already breaking stuff, he sledgehammered the toilet into pieces.
Eventually, once the dust settled (by the way, responsibility moment: old houses may have asbestos. You must check or you'll die of mesothelioma. Seriously, no joke. Breathing in asbestos is no good. Also, old houses may have lead paint. CHECK FOR THESE THINGS, PEOPLE!), we realized that we were going to need professional help. There are very few building codes for remodeling the bathroom (remodeling, not building a brand new one. Tons of codes there!), but pouring a shower pan is one of them. This wasn't a project I wanted to take on. There are rules about how it should slope, and what if the cement isn't done right? It could crack and leak everywhere. Our house is built on a slab, so no worries about rotting sub-floor, but still... I don't want water leaking at all. No bueno, no bueno.
Oh... and because we needed to wait for the money to call in for professional help, this project sat until February. That's when we get our tax return. Now we can finally call in for help! Hooray! Only 8 months so far. Not too shabby for this family who took years to finish painting projects. 8 months is like snapping your fingers!
This week they started work. This is what our bathroom looked like last night.
You can see where our shower stall used to start. Now we were able to push it back against the wall to give us a longer shower space. Oohh... so fancy, so fancy. This definitely makes the bathroom feel bigger. We also raised the showerhead so the Mister can actually take a decent shower without ducking. People were shorter in the 50s apparently.
I won't lie, I wish we would've finished the demo work ourselves. We probably would've saved a couple hundred dollars demoing the shower pan and finish removing the chickenwire plaster drywall. Also, I peeked in during the construction guy's lunch break, and we could've done the darn plumbing ourselves. He just attached plastic lines to the copper. So hindsight is definitely 20/20.
The upside is it's done, and we didn't have to break through cement, and we didn't have to keep breathing in crap. Today they will put up the tile backerboard, waterproof and pour the new shower pan. Eventually we will need someone to come in and fix the vanity drain pipe before we install that. Also, we didn't plug up our shower drain like a smart person would've, so we will need to have someone snake the drain because it's clogged. Yep, we are idiots.
I can't wait to share a few moodboards. I am so torn on what we should do for finishing touches. So stressful! Do I do what I really want, or do I keep it simple? Stay tuned!