When we flush the commode in our upstairs bathroom, the pipes squeak and shake like the walls are possessed. The culprit—at least according to my wife—is the new, plusher toilet paper she introduced to our five kids.
Apparently, plusher also means you use more of it and express wonder and shock, “Shock, I tell you!” when the toilet overflows. The problem has become so severe the plunger now lives permanently next to the kid’s toilet.
As you might guess, our stock of plush toilet paper was quickly replaced by whatever it was we were using previously. My wife hopes whatever is stuck in our pipes will gradually work its way out of our house and finish its journey to wherever it is that stuff goes.
This issue is only one of many we’ve faced in trying to keep the kid’s bathroom clean and in working order. Other issues: girl’s hair and clogged pipes; toothpaste, dental floss and mouthwash everywhere; wet bars of soap slid hither and yon around the countertop; caulk that never seems to quite close the gap between the bathtub and subfloor or countertop and mirror; and water, water, water, everywhere—including my kitchen ceiling. Yes, the kids’ bathroom is above the island in our kitchen—something I’m reminded of more than I care to admit.
One problem is simple behavior. The room is very, very busy and it only takes one kid forgetting, or not recognizing, the shower curtain isn’t tucked into place properly to cause a water problem in our kitchen. And, once one person leaves their stuff lying about the countertop, the next person comes along and assumes the rules have changed. Ugh!
It’s a maddening, constant fight against anarchy.
The other problem is restroom design. Had we adhered to some of the suggestions in this month’s issues we would have saved ourselves a ton of headaches. Take the countertops, in particular. They are a laminate material that is under constant strain. It isn’t holding up and that simple fact is leading to other problems. A solid material would have been a better option. Same with the shower curtain—we need a foolproof door to keep the water where it belongs. And, the size is all wrong. When the kids were small, it seemed huge. Now that they’ve grown, it’s almost unworkable.
I know my problems are small compared to yours on this subject. Hopefully, some of the ideas we present will help you get over the hump—or at lease ensure you can store your plungers in your storage closet (as opposed to your bathroom stalls). Both are good results.
Till next month…
Rodney J. Auth