Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Feeling like a children's book plot

You know those children's books that are built on a causal relationship: if you give a mouse a cookie...?
Well, that's sort of the way home remodeling works.  If you want to spiff up the kitchen, you have to spiff up the adjacent laundry and half-bath.  If you want to re-tile the kitchen, you have to retile the laundry/half-bath to get rid of that awful white and gray linoleum.  If you re-tile the half-bath, you have to remove the toilet and the somewhat rotty molding around the door frame... and the door frame itself.  And all the other appliances related to cleaning.

It was a long day of unplugging appliances and praying I don't flood the house.

I did fine.  My friend's son has come over for the past couple of days to help me get friendly with the wet saw.  I've finally made friends, and whipped out 14 beautifully cut tiles a few hours ago.

Here's the vanity that was previously topped with a white formica countertop.  I put in small, brown glass tiles and white porcelain border, et voila:
And crap.  The sink doesn't fit anymore.  My compagnon says in his French accent, "She looks like she was meant to be that way, custom made."  Okay.  It did make me feel a little better.  But I will have to replace that old cheap faucet with my next paycheck, because I haven't a dime to spare these days.

 The tiles are cut and numbered so I can remove them and mortar tomorrow without losing track of their placement.
 The laundry room.  Not too exciting, but don't those tiles look expertly cut?  That's my Wet-saw Magic Fingers.

The next photo was taken with my special night-vision camera. I took it at night and in secret, to avoid disturbing the natural habitat of appliances.  I title this one, The Mating Ritual of Washers and Dryers.  You'll notice the toilet also flirting with the dishwasher, a cross-species relationship that we have only recently discovered. This is the first time humans have captured this activity on camera.

And lastly, back to the kitchen, I realized none too soon that I needed to cut yet another portion off the soffit to accommodate the incoming oven cabinet.  Better late than never.  The crown molding will go up last.

I'm tired.  But not too tired to write today.

I promised something on the writing process along with the remodel process.  I did write a query letter to an agent today, and she requested the full manuscript.  I have a knack with query letters.  It makes me wonder why people pay loads of money to attend workshops to learn how to write one.  Crossing my fingers that this will be another productive year in publishing!

Next post: I'm flabbergasted by the warm, detailed feedback on my novel, Song of the Orange Moons.


  1. My first experience with a wet saw is funny. I was installing some beautiful Spanish tile in a large room. Like the average man I decided I didn't need the blade guard on the wet saw, so I could see the blade better. Little did I know that that was there to stop the water spray too. I ended up with a dark orange spray line that started at my belt, went up my body, along the back wall and all the way across the ceiling. Lesson learned.

  2. Ha! I figured out the safeguard, too. My friend's son cut many of the tiles first as I measured them. Then he went home and I finished up the rest. Our porch has an interested gray layer now.

    I love Spanish tiles. I'll bet that project turn out to be gorgeous.

  3. Just looked through your last few posts, and you have done an AMAZING job with the kitchen! I had to look up "soffit" in the dictionary. Respect! Can't wait to see when it is finished!