The XO Laptop

I just received my new XO laptop that I bought last month. It's definitely for kids. I have pretty small hands and the keyboard on the laptop is small even for me. I'm pretty impressed with it though. It's running a version of Fedora, Fedora core 7 I think. But it has a terminal to use and lots of other stuff. I think for kids in developing countries, where cost is the main factor, that these things will work pretty well. Though, it's funny that it doesn't come with any sort of documentation. The kid just has to play around with it. I like doing that, but I don't know how many others do.

I was thinking about giving mine to the kids, but I think that here, I could just buy a really cheap laptop and just install linux myself. It would just be a challenge to get all the drivers working, but I think it would be doable. The software on the XO is basically just a software depot, so I could just download from there to whatever laptop I get. The kids might like some of that stuff. Anyway, I think it'd be worth a try.

Views of the Shower

Today is the last day of 2007. I think I'll remember this year as the year that I had no shower. It took just about the entire year, but I got things basically done. Here are some pics of the finished bathroom. (Note that there are no shots of the ceiling because that's not yet done.)

Easy Repairs

I talked to my boss at work today and he told me that perhaps my showerhead had a regulator in it that restricted the flow. I took it off and indeed there was a little plastic regulator. So I took a pair of pliers and pulled it out. I then switched the pipe for the showerhead around because I had it in backwards. This solved my problem of not being able to get the cover on, which makes me happy. I replaced the showerhead and can't really tell a difference in the flow. So I guess it didn't make that much of a difference. Oh well.

I also went to Ace and had a little piece of pipe cut to 6 3/4". Getting the pipe was easy, but paying for it was a bit more difficult. The cashier first put in 6 feet of pipe, which I had to point out was wrong. I mean, just look at the pipe I was holding. Then, she couldn't believe that it was only 90 cents. Which again, I said a foot was $1.80, so 6" for 90 cents is probably right. She then proceeded to put in .05 inches and got a pipe for 9 cents which I agreed with her was wrong. But that the 90 cent price was ok, she just had to include the cutting and threading. Finally she agreed with me and I got the pipe for around $4. She was very nice through it all, but it saddened me that she just wasn't that bright.

Anyway, the downspout looks much better now with the new pipe. It fits snug against the tile. I also adjusted the drain lever to make sure that it's completely open. Hopefully, this will make the water go down faster. I fear though, that the angle of the tub is just not enough to make the water go down the drain quickly. Oh well, I'll know to watch out for that on the next bathroom that I remodel.

My First Shower

I started remodeling the bathroom on January 27, 2007. I've just taken my first shower in my remodeled bathroom. The entire room is not done, but the tub area is, so I figured I could take a shower. It was a bit of a let-down. I guess I was expecting a fantastic experience after all the work I put into it. But, it turned out to be a shower just like the ones I took before I did anything, except that the water did in fact get hot. (That's more likely related to the fact that I finally turned the heat up on the hot-water heater.)

Anyway, there are some things I have to fix. One, the water pressure is not that good. I'm fairly certain that there's nothing I can do about that, so I'll probably just have to live with it. Two, the drain didn't go down as fast as I thought it would have. I'll have to check the drain hardware to make sure that I'm not partially blocking it. This should be fixable. Three, the cover for the pipe that comes out of the wall where the showerhead is won't go on. It's stuck between the bend in the pipe and the tile. I think this is fixable by changing the pipe. If I put one with a longer one in, it should clear the tile. Four, the pipe that connects the spout for the water going directly to the tub is too long. I bought a 7" one, but it's about 1/4" too long. I asked at Ace and they can cut and thread a new pipe for me, so I'll have to do that.

So, I'm glad that I can take a shower again, but I'm debating whether I consider it a success or failure. Perhaps this was a project just far outside of my abilities. Either way, there's still quite a bit more work to do on it.

Window Tile

Finally, I have the tile done around the window. It's not fantastic, but it's not bad. If I had built the original wall square, I would have had a lot fewer problems. But, live and learn.

Here it is:

I still have to grout, but that and sealing are the last steps for the tile. Then I can take a shower! (Or a really long bath.)

Moving Right Along

Took Friday off from work (where they pay me) to work on my bathroom (where I don't pay me). I got lots done. I painted and put the floor tiles in. Today (or yesterday as I write this), my brother Mark came over and we did lots of tiling on the walls. He was a great help and I got tons more done with him here than I would have done by myself. We got all the tile in around the shower and most of the window done. I just have to finish the top (arch) of the window and the wall behind the toilet and sink. Turns out that I'm going to have to get more tile, but that's ok. No pictures today. It's getting close to being done and I'm getting excited.