Except for a few tiles that I'll set after tiling the floor, I finished tiling the tub surround last week. Friday evening I began grouting. Since the space between the tiles is very small (~1/16th inch), I had to use "unsanded" grout, which is a little more difficult to use and sets up rather quickly, meaning you have to work with very small amounts at a time or work very fast.
I had intended to buy a mixing paddle to use with the drill, but I forgot, so I tried to mix the grout by hand. This turned out to be amazingly difficult, and by the time I was done mixing, I was worn out and the grout had begun to set. So I rushed to the shower and started flinging grout like a madman. I was scooping it out and smearing it on the wall with the grout float, working in huge sections and making ridiculous movements to get the grout where it should be and keep it away from where it shouldn't. I felt like a crazed artist creating an abstract masterpiece.
I got about 2.5 walls done (at that point, the grout in the bucket simply became too solid to use), then Jessica and I attacked it with sponges, wiping off the excess and creating presentable grout lines. When we stopped, the bathroom looked like a hurricane had hit it:
Saturday morning, we picked up paint for the master bedroom and got to work. I began where I left off with the grouting. I mixed the grout a little thinner this time, so it was easier to mix and the process went much more smoothly. Jessica finished painting the ceiling in the bathroom, then started on the walls. (Needless to say, we did not go with the loud reddish color we first considered. We decided on "Lisbon Blue".) We made surprisingly short work of both tasks.
Jessica took pictures of the flowers she planted around the mailbox Friday afternoon. It looks fantastic, and we're very thankful that Papa repaired the brick flowerbed to make this possible:
With painting almost done (Jessica thinks she'll probably do a second coat on the walls.) and grouting done (except for sealing it), I started on the floor. Dad came over for a few hours and we put some backer board down:
While we were doing this, Jessica painted the master bedroom walls. The color she went with reminds me of sand. I like it, but Jess wishes it were a tad darker.
We miss having everyone around (compared to last weekend, the place was a ghost town), but I feel like we still got a lot done. I hope to finish putting backer board down today and possibly lay a few floor tiles. We're getting closer!