The girls have been going downstairs to use the loo (how does one speak of these things delicately) + brushing their teeth in the kitchen sink for about a year. We've had plumbers out to inspect this frequently overflowing toilet three times over the years. Each time the response was that the toilet was good...hmm. When the sink began leaking, the fix offered was to cost almost as much as a whole new sink cabinet. You see where this is headed...toward the long time that it takes between let's-do-this + no-really-let's-do-this.
So this summer, this bathroom (finally) got an update. We used our favorite Sherwin Williams low VOC High Reflective White paint to brighten this space up. I'd been dreaming of replacing that old sink + cabinet for quite some time, so I knew that I wanted the Ikea Hemnes/Odensvik combination. The price/style ratio can't be beat, in my opinion. The spacious drawers make it so much more functional than the old cabinet. A simple Ikea mirror tops it off nicely (and is so much easier to clean than the ornate frame that hung here before). I was able to sell the old mirror for more than the new one cost. :)
Of course the flooring under the old cabinet didn't reach the wall, so it had to be replaced too. I decided to go with Coretec Plus Ivory Coast Oak. It is waterproof vinyl that looks very realistically like wood and has a cork underlayment. Its core is made from recycled wood + bamboo dust. It is CARB compliant + GreenGaurd certified (which pertain to off gassing + VOC's). There was no smell at all related to this flooring + I am so happy with its look, feel, + performance so far.
Once I had the flooring figured out (which was no easy task), I didn't have much energy left to decide on a toilet. I picked the first nice-looking (easy-to-clean looking), water-saving, not too expensive toilet on the Home Depot website. It was in-stock and ready to pick up in a couple of hours. We like that it has the dual flush options (and that there has been no more overflowing.)
The original tub/shower is functional, so it went unchanged. I took this chance to replace our bath towels with white "air weight" towels from Coyuchi. They are fair-trade + organic cotton, + I was able to pick them up during a sale. White towels are my preference as they can be bleached, if necessary. A metal over-the-door hook allows the girls to hang their towels on the back of the door (good-bye too small towel bar). The only real embellishment here is the wall hanging made from a collection of shells + driftwood collected during a holiday in Wales. Simplicity is beautiful (+ easier to clean). :)
This was a big replacement expense. We paid for it with cash from our savings. If this had been our only bathroom, we may have had to do things a bit differently (maybe piece by piece)...but we waited until we were ready to pay cash for all the components + the labor. This is our main bathroom, so there was some inconvenience involved with waiting. Just sayin'...inconvenience + patience are often parts of budgeting. I think they just make money more real...to us + to our children. Jo + Julia understand the limitations of our budget + that makes me feel...not embarrassed, but like I'm being a good parent.
We feel so blessed to have this "new" bathroom. :)