The first thing we always do when moving into a “new” old house is to change the toilet seats. I am a germaphobe, and no amount of bleach or scrubbing makes a stranger’s toilet seat inviting. Seriously, I hovered to pee (at home!) until this task was complete. The first of such restroom breaks resulted in (TMI yet? Keep going. I dare you) a leaking of water from the base of the toilet. Yay for “new” old house surprises! The blue culprit (not just sad, also ugly):
Hey, blue turtle … “taking a leak” … you’re doin’ it wrong:
So we decided to just replace this whole turtle. First step is to turn off the water, disconnect the hose from the tank, unscrew the bolts in the base, then
Installing the new turtle is fairly simple, and instructions are always included. A new extra thick wax ring makes all the difference. Check out our fancy new commode that is not so blue it cries out the bottom:
A trick I learned from a good friend is to use pennies to level an off-kilter potty by just sliding them in where needed. We still need to caulk the gap with the floor, but I actually don’t think we will since this whole bathroom is getting gutted. One less thing to rip out.
There are two other turtles in this house that got a less royal, but much needed treatment of simply swapping out a new seat. It is the easiest and cheapest short-term fix you can make.
We also removed the carpet in one of the bedrooms. The reality is that the carpet in the entire house is absolutely disgusting, but for now it is better than cement floors, and once we replace the roof we can remove the offending walls to reconfigure the layout and install new hardwood or engineered floors. Until then, I will have nightmares about the nasty carpet strangling me while I’m doing sit-ups (neither of which will happen).
The final tweak to the house was, sadly, removal of our indoor carbon dioxide to oxygen converter … yes, the tree. THE tree, as our neighbors say. We would have loved to save it and transplant it somewhere, but it just was not possible.
It took some branch cutters and the sawsall, and it was a pretty easy job just taking it down and removing the fake (yes, fake) flowers. We still have to remove the (very real) dirt and mulch, dig the roots out, and cement in the hole in our slab.
Bye bye, birdie. This picture, I could not resist:
But The Boy kept going …
Until we had this pile of dirt left in our living room:
It really opens up the living room (if you can look past the drop ceilings) and although I really wanted to decorate the tree for just one Christmas, taking it out was the right call. If it kept growing, the roots could affect the foundation, and that was a chance we weren’t willing to take.