In an effort to be thrifty – okay, it’s true The Frugal Girl inspired me – my husband and I decided that after paying a plumber (we love you, Rob, and appreciate your expertise, but you were not cheap!) to fix a fairly important pipe in our only bathroom, that it would probably make sense to spend some time and perhaps a bit of moolah to upgrade this important room. So off to research my hubby went and off to browsing stores I went. Lowes, as much as I love them, left me feeling discouraged that a double sink vanity would run us about $700+ without anything else. We got to thinking and are hoping to spend less than $1,000 to give our bathroom a new look. Since wonderful Rob took out our floor and forced us to replace some of our floor vinyl tiles, we are left with a hodge-podge look for now but realized that unless we properly revamped things we would continue to have a bathroom that was just ‘so-so’. The plan, for now anyway, is to replace the double sink vanity (approx 75″ long by 19″ deep) that will include new faucets and sink bowls, new mirrors, new lighting, a facelift to the medicine cabinet, paint throughout, continue to replace vinyl tile flooring, fix a few bathtub cracks and holes with epoxy, new hardware, remove mirror on door of linen closet and possibly find a piece of furniture to go over the laundry basket.

Here’s the bathroom while Rob (I really do like our plumber; how can we hate a fellow NY Giants fan?) was working to fix the issue. Shameless plug for Rob. His website is and he is FANTASTIC!

Here’s some photos of the unfolding of the pipe replacement and my husband’s wonderful job of putting everything back together. Kind of like humpty dumpty in a way, only thankfully we did finally put it back together again and it didn’t take all the king’s horses and all the king’s men. 🙂

…and then here it is now awaiting an upgrade…

My husband and I started talking about why we couldn’t look for an antique dresser to rehab into our vanity. Plus we like old things and it would give it some extra style and flair. While perusing the aisles of our local thrift store I found this beauty and after emailing a photo to the hubby we decided at $45 it was just too good to pass up so we snagged it. This is the future bathroom vanity.

And here it is finally getting a coat of primer on it. It’s on it’s side and the top has been taken off.

Next steps are for me to continue researching countertops (since we saved so much on the vanity we might consider granite if the price is right) and then we’ll be ready to start shopping for faucets, sinks, mirrors and lights. Oh and I think my husband told me my job is to paint the vanity. We’ve decided on Rustoleum’s Painter’s Touch  [Actually went with Behr because the guy at Home Depot was oh-so convincing]- in black (much like the top is already but with no tacky gold stenciled designs). More photos to come but we are going to try to do something unique and cost-effective with this renovation.

Recently we purchased these supplies and I think this week it might actually be warm enough (yes, in January in the northeast) to paint. Another blogger had recommended Floetrol (never used it before) to help thin out the appearance of brush strokes. Definitely going to test it out on guinea pig wood first. The Home Depot guy also said I absolutely needed this $18 dollar brush. My husband reminded me to make sure to get all of the paint off of it and wrapping it in a paper towel to dry (an artist friend of mine told me that – helps reduce the crunchiness). And then the Behr paint he made especially for me. The darkest “black” paint they had wasn’t really black so he just gave me the black paint straight up with no other color additions. Again, Bob, at Home Depot was my personal consultant and I love him for it!

Hosting: A lost art

I am finding that people are hosting parties less and less these days. Perhaps it’s my constant need for human interaction and being too much of a socialite (is that even a word?) but I really like it when I get to be with people at a gathering and catch up. Such was the situation today when my family and I traveled to a previous client’s home about an hour away for some good wine, food and time to catch up. When we were leaving they gave us this bottle of WONDERFUL Italian wine.

One of my 2012 goals is to be more intentional with hosting. I have all these lofty plans and I have promised myself not to be sad if I fail, but I really want to regularly gather people to our home for quality time. Scrapbooking and wine party. Clothing swap party. Birthdays. Perhaps even an 80’s party. I know that when I have been invited to events I am usually so excited to go and visit with people. Friends of ours had a Christmas Leftover Party where everyone brought their opened bottles of wine and half eaten casserole dishes and we just hang out. What a great idea!

So, if you like to host, do it. If you like to eat other peoples’ food, find a polite way to invite yourself over to someone’s house. It’s good to get together with people. In this crazy world of texting (and blogs…) it’s good to get vis-a-vis with each other.

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