On DIY: A Monument to Projects Unfinished
This Old House editor Scott Omelianuk laments about the endless list of projects left unfinished at his house
Letter from This Old House, November, 2010
I am tired, poor, a huddled mass under this drop cloth, yearning to breathe free.
And while the breathing free is easier these days, what with all the low-VOC paints available, being a huddled mass (too much pizza), being poor (too much remodeling), and being tired (too little sleep because I worry about being poor from too much remodeling) are much harder to get a handle on.
The mistakes my wife and I make along the way don't help either. Case in point: We painted the TV room the wrong color for the fourth or fifth time about a year ago, which means that in finally picking a new color this week, we're right on schedule—12 months later—to finish. Someday. Or not.
I don't know what it's like at your house, but that's the way it goes around here.
For every five projects started, we complete about three. So, for example, the kitchen backsplash finally has its glass mosaic, but the kitchen thermostat that should sit snugly atop it springs from the wall on its wire like a plastic digital daisy. What would it take to secure it? Maybe a pair of screws.
Or there's this one: Since replacing every door in the house, the one to our bedroom has never really closed properly. You would think there's got to be a better fix than barring it with the laundry basket every night, but that's how we do it. I guess it's fortunate we always have washing that hasn't been done.
How many other projects do I have like that? I could list them all, but I only get one page here, and there are a few other things to talk about.
Like the story "Personalize Your Home With Paint." I found it fascinating—and frustrating that I wasn't able to read it last year, before we painted the TV room the wrong color. Here's hoping it's more timely for you. And then there's the story "12 DIY Projects to Add Old-House Charm." I love this story. It's got the inspiration and explanation that make TOH so special. Of course, it also gives me 12 opportunities for new unfinished projects....