Wednesday, December 17, 2008

12/17/08 Gabriel-proofing

Whoever invented the wetness alarm had kids like Gabriel in mind. Some alarms have different sounds or buzz frequencies, intended the kids don't get used to them and sleep through. They're not easy to shut off, and aren't that easy to take off.

But that didn't stop Gabriel last night from turning off the alarm, removing it, changing his pajamas, and getting right back into bed (with a wet sheet, ick). I went into the boys' room to take them to the bathroom around 1am, but I was 10 minutes too late. He'd already put his wet pajamas in the laundry basket and ditched the alarm onto the floor. One thing about Gabriel, he'll tell you to the minute when he woke up. After he wet the bed, that is.

Spending half my day dealing with remodeling issues is becoming the new norm. Yesterday I left work to meet with a Corian fabricator, answer numerous questions from the carpenter, painter and tilesetter. Before I left work, I was on the phone several times (not good). Today I had to drive to Redwood City to get Corian samples (the guy yesterday forgot to bring them, arrgh), then ended up leaving work again to bring beadboard and cap samples to the carpenter, and spent a good half hour working with him on how high and where to put things. The details are coming fast and furious.

The tile has been the biggest time-sink and source of angst and countless decisions and problems. Many times I've asked myself: why I can't point to a tile pattern in 5 minutes? Why can't I use one size in the whole bathroom? Why can't I use the same tile in all the bathrooms? Why didn't we do a one-piece pre-fab shower and skip the tile altogether? Why can't I just be normal?

I had my answer today looking at the nearly-done bathrooms: because that would take all the fun out of it!

Bath 1. This onyx border is beautiful; varied and full of life. Natural stone is my favorite.

Bath 2. It's great when someone else pulls you out of your comfort zone. Some of my favorite things I'd never have thought to choose myself. Ceramic? Glass? I love it. This floor is perhaps my favorite in the whole house.

Bath 3. This glass border is great -- I was nervous at first; colored glass against faux-stone porcelain is punchy and trendy, but I love it now. This bathroom is filled with strange angles and transitions; the tile guys did a LOT of cutting. This will be where the vast majority of child and smelly-teenager bathing will occur, so I wanted low-maintenance porcelain 12x12s in here. It has a shower now, which it didn't before.

That vanity -- and the order sheet -- is cherry with a glaze, can you tell? I see "espresso." I never wanted it that dark. One of thousands of things I have to get over.

A huge bright spot in childrearing has just flooded our house, like the sun pushing through after a powerful thunderstorm blowing through Montana. Katrina! She's been adorable lately, full of joyful observations, games, songs, roaring laughter and enthusiastic cheer. So much like her consumes me with pride and shaking fear at the same time. When they decide to unleash their power from the Dark Side, it's ugly. But when they direct their shining lights strength toward good causes and happy intentions, it's Utopia.


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