Tuesday, November 1, 2016

The Line of Stupidity: A Tale of Chores Yet Undone

I'd like to show you something that I haven't shown many people.

It's one of our dirty little secrets:


I know my photos are crappy, as usual, but I'm hoping you can see where the lovely, fresh gray paint on the left joins up with the yellow faux plasterwork paint on the right. Do you? Good.

That's the LINE OF STUPIDITY.

Perhaps you have something similar in your house.

You see, when we had our major kitchen renovation done in Jan/Feb, we had the main level, which isn't a very large space, painted a lovely shade of gray, Moonshine by Benjamin Moore. Our kitchen renovators were pros, and they did a wonderful job. When they were putting on the finishing touches, we told them to stop painting right there, at the LINE OF STUPIDITY, because we wanted to finish the job ourselves to save money.

Now if you have ever renovated a kitchen, you know that you are basically hemorrhaging the big bucks at that point in the game. Would a few hundred dollars more have made much of a difference? I don't know. We didn't even ASK what it would have cost for them to keep painting. But I do know they could have hammered it out in about an hour or two, if that.

In the time since the kitchen was completed, my pregnant belly yielded forth a precious baby, who is on the verge of crawling now, our daughter finished up 9th grade and is well into 10th, yet the yellow remains.


It's not even a lot of yellow. Our upstairs hall is tiny, and is 3/4 white molding and doorways which we do not intend to paint.

 Now before we blame this whole debacle on the the innocent baby in our house, and his never-ending needs, I must confess that it's not as if we could not have seen this coming. Remember when we had french doors installed at the old house, told the handyman we would paint them ourselves, only to call him back ONE YEAR LATER to do the job? Yeah. Me too.

So please, help a girl out. Or at least her husband out, and tell me of any unfinished projects you have staring you in the face.

40 comments:

Lolo said...

Base boards still not installed 2 3/4 years later - we were going to do this task to save money.

S. said...

Are you kidding me? Where to even start....
1) I painted the living room and hallway, then got exhausted and never touched up. Also, half the moulding got done, other half no.
2) Kitchen ceiling - took down the fan don't ask how many years ago, has yet to be patched up.
3) The kids' room - before we had kids, I sanded the floor. Then we had guests arriving sooner than we expected so we tacked on remnant. So the floor looks carpeted. But not. Since then, kids have moved in, with a bunk bed. That floor may never get properly refinished.
4) I didn't garden at all last year. Which means the phlox didn't come up at all this year. The front bed is a battle between the Rose of Sharon (which reseeds profusely, which I didn't know) and the mint.

There. Feel better now? :)

S.

Anonymous said...

It took us almost 4 years to remodel our master bathroom if that makes you feel any better.

Jennifer said...

Starting in the summer of 2014 we renovated all but the 2 full bathrooms in our house. This includes an entire new kitchen - (cabinets, granite, appliances), new wood floors in the entire lower level, all new carpeting in the upper level, new tile and comode in 1/2 bath, EVERY room painted, new furniture, and all new window treatments in living room dining room, music room, family room, kitchen and all 4 bedrooms. It was exhaustive and took several months - into February of 2015 when my then 12 year old son took suddenly, critically ill and was on a ventilator in the PICU while friends moved furniture so the carpet installers could finish the last bedroom. The very last thing to do was decide on overhead decorative lighting in the kitchen where there was previously a ceiling fan. The boy is back to being 100% healthy, but I still have a gaping hole in my kitchen ceiling...

Stephanie Pendleton said...

Sorry - too many to list. You only have one hallway. I won't bother you with the ceiling with waterspots, the unattached moulding at the bottom of the stairs and the ten other things because WE ARE TOO LAZY TO CALL THE CONTACTOR who has graciously repeatedly offered to come finish the job for us. Oh, and we don't have a new baby. Or even anyone under 10.

Stephanie Pendleton said...

Sorry - too many to list including unattached molding at the bottom of the stairs because we ARE TOO LAZY TO SCHEDULE the contractor who has repeatedly offered to come finish the punch list. From a year ago. Oh, and we don't have a new baby. Or even a child under 10 at home.

Colleen said...

@Lolo (comment # 1), we can beat that by 8 years. TEN years ago, we did a major add-on and wanted to save money by doing the trim ourselves. Still no trim. I would seriously be happy with no Christmas/birthday gifts until the trim is done.

Anonymous said...

Oh man, I can't even tell you all the projects which are half done! We are thinking of moving and now are counting all the things on the Honey-Do list to make our house presentable for buyers. It's daunting! There was a leak in the basement for which we needed to open the ceiling drywall (two years ago!) and (surprise!) there's still a hole in the ceiling. Our front entry way..I'm ashamed to admit, I started painting ages ago and never got all the way through. I had to fix a window in the front door frame. It got stalled for a million reasons, like you know how you can't always find replacement parts for one little thing and then you have to replace a bunch of other things to match the new piece?! Well, that happened with the molding around the window to be replaced and trying to match it to the other windows in the door panel. I could go on and on.. We try to do DIY projects to save $, but truthfully only have a couple hours on a weekend to get stuff done. And it just doesn't happen fast!

Anonymous said...

We had some extra baseboard from our living room project and so husband tore off all baseboard in dining room and installed the extra - which only covered half the room. So one half had baseboard and the other had none. That was 7 years ago. We are in the midst of a kitchen/downstairs reno and decided to get the professionals to finish everything that was undone. Well worth the money!

Diane said...

Bought ancient farmhouse in 1975 as newlyweds. Tore it apart while having three kids, moved out of province in 1986, returned home in summers but not back full time till 2008. We are *almost* done . . . still need window coverings (live in country so no one can see in, but still . . . ).

Old Chinese proverb: "Man finish house, he die." At this rate we will live forever.

Diane said...

Bought old farmhouse in 1975 as newlyweds. After stripping down to bare boards and removing all wiring, plumbing, chimney, raising house and putting in basement, etc. etc., we had SIL (who, along with our kids, wasn't even born back then) finish up remaining bits last year. Still waiting for window coverings. Fortunately we live in the country so nobody peering in but still. . .

Kendra HeadlessMom said...

We've been in our house for 14 years. When we moved in, the entirety of the inside was an extremely pale pink, ala 1990. Fast forward to today? Most every inch of the pink paint is gone EXCEPT in my bedroom. That I have to look at every.damn.day.

I SO FEEL YOUR PAIN.

lizzied said...

Oh, sweetie... I can't make a list that long. I think I would cry. Suffice to say that once upon a time we *bought all the paint* to paint our downstairs. That paint has SINCE GONE BAD and had to be disposed of at the special disposal site at our landfill. Seriously. It's been that long. Now I have washed and taped the walls downstairs for painting (figuring I'd do that BEFORE buying paint this time), but I got to the point where I would have to move the enormous TV stand... but the TV is going on the wall... but my husband does NOT want to move the TV to the wall before we paint... and we haven't yet moved the stand... and now the tape is starting to be grungy and peeling, and I have stopped seeing it... and honestly I'm pretty sure I can't go on.

Except to tell you that we have lived there TWENTY (20) YEARS and this would be the FIRST TIME we have painted the downstairs.

Gawd.

m_semz said...

In 2008 (or possibly before), we had some plumbing repair work done where they cut a few nice square holes in the garage walls to get to pipes. Rather than call someone out to fix this and pay for it, my husband said he could do it himself. Going on 10 years, and the holes are still there.

One crazed mommy said...

Oh Lord...I have a laundry list of unfinished, and not started projects.
1. Fence in the yard - we've been in our house 12 years, and have been intending to fence it in.
2. Screen in the porch...see reason above - 12 years...ready for a screened in porch so that all of the debris (see below about Matthew) doesn't end up blowing on our porch...my husband spent 3 hours out there a few weeks back pressure spraying the porch, and within 2 days it was covered with leaves and acorns...darn squirrels!!
3. Paint our den, kitchen and foyer...still have original crappy paint from the house builder. It's not pretty stuff...it's been drawn on by kids in pencil and crayon, and the Mr. Clean has done nothing but smudge the dirt or worn the paint away.
4. Tear up our carpets and hardwood the downstairs - we have the original crappy carpet, and it has been through the ringer - babies...dogs...cats...vomit...pee (animals and babies)...spilled drinks...baby poop...you name it, it's been spilled on there. Cleaned multiple times, but it needs to go.
5. Reorganize my bedroom - it's accumulated so much stuff, and needs a full day of going through the closet and sorting and tossing.
6. Clean out the garage - we've been talking about doing this for 3 years...still hasn't happened. It's a mess!
7. Clean out the bonus room/frog - it's our catch all room, plus our guest room. You should see us scramble to try to make it decent when company comes to stay...haha! But...we don't have an attic or basement, so it all goes there.
8. Clean up our backyard - we still haven't had a moment to get to the backyard and clean up the debris from Hurricane Matthew...yes, that was weeks ago, and we have tree limbs all over the place. We also back up to an 80 foot buffer of trees, so I know as soon as we clean it up, we're just going to have the entire yard covered in pine needles and acorns.
9. Clean the turtle tank - this actually gets done fairly regularly, but it's about a week overdue.
10. Fix our kitchen cabinet - we have one area where the wood wasn't properly installed, and the weight of our dishes makes it sag...I'm just waiting for the whole thing to come crashing down one day! Again...12 year old house...should NOT have this problem
I could probably go on and on...but you get the idea. We're so far behind, we don't even know where to begin. Before you begin to think we are total slackers, I work full time, my husband has had numerous back surgeries (his last double neck fusion was in January), and my kids are either too busy, or too lazy...haha! Most of the big jobs fall on hubby and me, but there is only so much he can do, so we have to pace it. My weekends have lately been spent at tennis practice, and playing taxi driver...so it's just hard to get to it all!

owlfan said...

We did a major kitchen remodel um maybe 8-10 years ago and while we did eventually get the floors done (1 year later) and the tile maybe a year after that. We still have not painted. And of course, the new cabinets are not in exactly the same place, so the wall isn't even primed there!
Then we had the flooring all replaced in the basement 2 years ago. I did get the guy then to replace one piece of molding from our front entry which had been off for probably 5 years, I was going to put the baseboard back in the basement. I did all but 2 pieces. Why did I stop with 2 pieces left??? Must get that done. (Note I still have no clue about getting kitchen painted....)

twingles said...

Ha! Learned that lesson in our old house. This time when we had some work done we agreed to an extra $400 on the spot to finish up the painting. Like you said, done in the amount of time my husband could have done the taping.

EVERYONE does stuff like this. We're humans, we never learn!

melanie said...

Totally gutted and renovated our kitchen 2 years ago. Never actually repainted. We thought the replastered wall looked "just fine" with the dining room AND living room. Hahaha that's how it remains to this day.

Leah Moore said...

An old chest of drawers. The ugly paint was mostly stripped off to reveal beautiful rosewood veneer. It's been sitting in the garage waiting to be finished for over a year.

Laura said...

What is it about baseboards and trim?! January will mark thirteen years since we were going to replace it upstairs, after painting and working on hardwood floors. As an added bonus, if we were to move certain pieces of furniture in some of the rooms, we would reveal the blue painter's tape that we were too busy (read: "lazy") to remove. Plus side? I am already ahead of the game, now that I want to repaint the bedrooms. 😉

Gigi said...

When we moved into this house in February we had a long list of projects that needed doing. We haven't even bothered to have a contractor come to give us a price. We lived in last house for over five years with paper shades because we couldn't be bothered to deal with it.

The worst procrastination had nothing to do with the house - but my wedding rings. ELEVEN YEARS! http://gigisramblings-gso.blogspot.com/2016/06/procrastination-at-its-finest.html

Beth said...

Moved in 15 months ago. Any items from the home inspector's list that didn't involve risk of electrocution or carbon monoxide poisoning still have yet to be done. More importantly, there are still unpacked cardboard boxes, I haven't seen my yoga mat in a year and a half, and guess where the boxes sit? Stacked along the wall in my nice big master suite where I can gaze at them from the bed. I've peeked in the boxes and don't see the yoga mat, or I may have unpacked them. I think they are winter clothes.

Lynnee said...

We have lived n our house for 18 years, long enough for our four children to grow older, switch rooms several times, each switch necessitating a redecoration. However, my husband and I have never gotten around to decorating our room, even though we have a massive paint chip in the shape of South America on the wall above our bed. This accidental rendering of South America is a dull turquoise color, reminiscent of school bathrooms in the 60's.

Anonymous said...

Was going to repaint a couple of rooms, had paint chips on the walls for months, never did it. Prepared the house to sell, and the house was conveniently still a single neutral colour! Lesson learned: sometimes procrastination does work out in your favour!

Kate said...

Had the whole house painted when we moved 3+ years ago, except for the kid's bathroom. What?!?!?? I did the trim work 2 years ago, but the walls are still the same blotchy blue/grey.

Brooke Dooley said...

ANNA-ONE WORD-HANDYMAN
you will feel so much better and you deserve it!

Anonymous said...

Have you ever hung a picture too high or too low? If you leave it a few days, it starts to look fine and you'll never move it. Or at least we won't.

Always wear your tiara said...

I cannot reach to finish painting the stairway that I painted nearly 2 yrs ago when the unhusband moved out. I painted the entire house in a week, one week but I cannot reach that one area. I just don't look up when I go down the stairs. I even admited defeat and rehung a picture. LOL

Anonymous said...

My husband always reckoned the best thing about moving house was that he could tear up the "to do" list, especially as we knew the buyers were going to completely remodel anyway! Three homes down the line, this summer we had people coming in to stay in our home whilst we were away so we spent several weeks working our way through every item on our latest list.... I should add that there is plenty of decorating left to do, but our house guests didn't have to wrestle with a front door handle that needed care in opening, a back door that one had to 'lift' to lock, vertical blinds that took special handling to close and such-like! We're thinking that perhaps we ought to have house sitters more often!

Lesley UK said...

Unfinished project? My entire home. (SOB)

Sandra Jerich said...

Master bathroom. Coated with white primer by the builder, because I couldn't decide on a color. Going on 13 YEARS...

julie gardner said...

Two Christmases ago, we told our daughter part of her gift would be repainting her room. Any color she wanted. And new bedding.
A week before Christmas, we let her and her friends graffiti all over the walls. Sharpie. Watercolor. Acrylics. The works. It was a total mess but we didn't care.

We were going to be painting. Soon.

She, like Margaret, was in 10th grade at the time.
Last night, she filled out the application for her first choice university.
I'm guessing her room will still be covered in graffiti when she moves to Oregon next fall.

Corinne said...

We moved into our house a year ago. Before we moved in, the previous owners had the entire interior painted builder-grade white. So, last month we decided on a paint color for our dining room/playroom space (open floorplan). We got the dining room done, and half of the play room. The new blue-gray paint stops right over a doorway. Someday....

My other paint job was the front door. It was brown. I painted it red. I painted the whole thing, but did a crappy job. It never got a second coat. And I left the can of paint outside in the weather for a while (like, a few weeks), so I'm pretty sure I now need to buy a new can of paint if I want to finish it.

Suzy said...

Unfinished project...just a work in progress...see it as a reminder? :) My list is too long.

Suburban Correspondent said...

2 years ago, a recommended contractor came to my house to give a quote for 2 bathrooms that needed remodeling (we can't use the showers in either one, as the tile is too old and compromised). He mentioned that he couldn't start work until January, 2 months away. I decided that was too far away and I would find someone else.

2 YEARS LATER (i.e., last week), I got back in touch with him and asked when he could start. You guessed it - January. But this time I wasn't stupid. I said YES.

Jen said...

Oh ladies thank you. Solidarity. The lists are too long to mention.

Jamie Gonzalez said...

Moved into the house in 2015, immediately painted on a bunch of gray swatches. Picked one. Loved it. Left five swatches there for 1.75 years. Finally painted -- THE ONE WALL. None of the other walls done. Oh, and "I'm not hanging any wall decor until the house is painted" so, absolutely nothing on the yellow walls to distract from the sketchy color.

c smith said...

Well, there's the kitchen ceiling that never got repainted after we installed new lights, now we have lovely inset lighting surrounded by bare drywall, the laundry room floor that has no tile because we pulled up the old stuff but wanted to replace it and the bathroom doors at the same time, 1 year ago. The worst had to be the kid's room. We gave them the attic storage room which we did convert to a great, huge, space. I got the Walls all prepped for painting and then, being the fun mom I am, I allowed them to draw on them, knowing it was all about to be covered up with fresh, new paint. Paint which I have yet to choose, 6 months later. I wince every time I go into their room and see the scribble covered walls.

Auntie Mip said...

I really needed this. Am coning to the end of my renovation and am dealing in some paint issues and think I am going to just pony up I have been hemorrhaging money anyway. What is a few more hundred dollars.

Sarah Aumann said...

Sounds familiar