Monday, May 26, 2014

New use for vintage tub, progress on house and other bits-n-bobs

Dear friends,

After pondering The Great Tub Project, going back and forth on the whole "sell it" or "give it away" or "recycle it" or USE it, I found that it's much easier to USE it.  Who knew it would be so hard to sell a vintage Kohler 1930 tub?  Anyway, once I decided to keep it, the next issue was where to put it and how to support it.

The tub is in really good shape, very little rust, no rust holes, so I didn't want it to just sit on the ground.  I want this sucker to last a while.   After looking into several ideas, finding a welder to make a wrought iron stand (it could possibly stretch or rust out before the tub does), making a galvanized pipe stand (which I loved but would be a lot of labor for ME), I decided to use what I had laying around and make it work---cement pavers with cement blocks.

Using a series of cut-off PVC pipes, boards and a lot of muscles, Rudy (mostly) and I finally got it into place. It was actually a bit easier than I thought it would be. Yes, it's VERY heavy--cast iron covered with porcelain, ya know.

Rudy used his heavy-duty drill and a lot of manpower to drill a series of drainage holes in the bottom.  The original drain is also there at the left-hand end, to provide additional drainage.  I'll put a little screen over it to keep the snails out.  Hopefully.

Another issue I had was -- where to put the thing.  After a lot of pondering, I decided to put it in an under-used corner of the garden, right beside the back/side entrance gate.  That's where most folks show up, anyway.  It's behind bushes, so doesn't look like a dumping ground from the street and we can see it from the patio.  The plan is to sand it a bit, put a color wash on it (not sure what color yet although I do have some other blue planters in the garden here and there) then put a series of plants in galvanized buckets around the front edge to help hide the blocks.

My next job will involve the painting, filling it up with something in the bottom so it doesn't take as much soil, getting the soil, deciding on what to plant (the FUN part), and actually doing it.  I know it will be a combo of herbs, maybe a tomato or pepper plant or two, and some trailing, dangling things to spill over the edges.  And some decorative doo-dads.  Now that it's in place, though, I can take my time with the rest.  Although, I'm very ANXIOUS to get 'er done.  You know how that is, I'm sure.

As for the rest of the house, well, ahem.  We are still working on the ancient plumbing, and I believe this is the last Big Thing we'll have to do where that's concerned.


Yes, my side yard is a shambles now.  But our wonderful superman plumber, Wayne Ging, was very careful not to take out any of the trees or bushes.  We only had to dig up one small lantana and move it.  Now I have to decide what to do with this area. Before the weeds and such see all that bare dirt.

There's an equally bare area in the back yard that was dug by hand by Wayne's assistant (bless you, Rick)!

 AND for those of you who have been chomping at the bit to know what I did with the front porch, here ya are.  Cheap, easy, and effective.  I might add a few hanging-thingies on the walls there, but for now, I'm calling it DONE. WHAT extra front door? :-)

 And wasn't that sweet of the salvia to start blooming just for the photos?

Oh, and for the plumbing geeks here, here's our new faucet, made of freeze-free PEX flexible pipe, insulated (stake to come). No longer will I have to go through the winter without garden water! It seems silly to be jazzed about faucets, but once you haul a 100-foot hose around for three years from ONE faucet, you appreciate having them here and there.  We added three new ones.  Woohoo, luxury!  LOL

 Next up---painting the north side of the house.

Happy trails!

bobbi c.

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