The first sign of trouble was the brown spot on the dining room ceiling. The dining room, as it turns out, is directly under the bathroom. I called Drainworks and they sent a guy—earring, shirt unbuttoned one button more than is conventional, small medallion—to have a look. He determined that the bathtub drain has a really slow leak, and he said the same thing the last guy who came in to look at the last brown spot on the ceiling said: the pipes are old. They're as old as this house, and as Chris the sexy plumber put it, they don't owe me anything. His thought was that the moment anyone puts a wrench to any part of the plumbing, all those eighty-year-old lead pipes will crumble and make a giant sloppy mess. He suggested we talk amongst ourselves and decide whether we want to do a patch job, just replace the pipes, or reno the whole damn bathroom.
So we talked, and decided to get a quote on renovating the bathroom. We'll probably go ahead with the reno: the bathroom is really old, and we would all love a new bathroom with a new tub and some storage space. We're also planning to put in a cheap and tiny powder room in the basement, which will add a whole new dimension of happiness to our mornings.
In the main bathroom we're replacing the ancient and not particularly fancy clawfoot tub with a deep rectangular tub, and we'll replace the newish, expensive faux-Victorian faucet with something sleek, modern and easy to clean, with a handle up high so you don't have to bend over to adjust it, and a handheld shower for rinsing little girls.
We're keeping the toilet (we bought it when we moved in) and putting a wall between the tub and the toilet so you can't see the toilet when the bathroom door is open.
We're going to move the old sink down to the basement powder room, but when it's down there we'll replace the newish, expensive faux-Victorian faucet with something cooler, easier to clean, but still kinda old-timey. Upstairs we're going to put in a shallow, wide rectangular trough sink (no picture because I can't find the kind of thing I want anywhere on the whole entire Internet) with two faucets. We're also going to have a proper vanity and a giant mirror, and whatever storage our designer can cram in.
The floor and walls will be white ceramic tile, and we'll put radiant heat under the floor for wintertime post-shower happy toes.
It's all going to be rather awesome (and probably awesomely expensive) and I'm quite excited. It will be nice to have at least one room in the house be slick and modern and cool.
And I'll take lots of pictures.