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The Queen of Half Done

I am not an expert on many things, but I believe I can claim an exceptional level of knowledge in one area: I know half done projects.

Why, you ask? Well, I do have a certain penchant for abandoning projects when they get tiring. Or difficult. Or expensive. Or just plain boring. Which explains those boxes of half-used beading supplies stacked in the corner of my kitchen. But hey, who doesn’t have a few of those? Come on, girls, ‘fess up. You’ve all been bitten by the crafters bug, and you’ve all plunked down your hard-earned cash (okay, debit card, but that doesn’t sound as cool) in exchange for that bag of felt and silk flowers and fabric paint stuffed in the top of your closet that was going to be the best Secret Santa gifts ever.

Beyond that, though, I also reign supreme because I live in a half done project.

When we moved back to the ranch, our first concern was housing. We crammed ourselves into the two room bunkhouse as a temporary measure, until we could weigh all of the available options. Then we balanced the checkbook and decided to drag an old wooden granary over and tack it on so we could have a living room. Within six weeks, the two buildings were connected, our living space had quadrupled, and we had a ream of plans on how we would finish off the plywood walls and concrete floors.

Nothing has changed since.

The walls and ceiling are still unpainted, the floor is still bare concrete, and the bathroom still features exposed two by fours and a floor that is half particle board/half old linoleum. But hey, we’re warm and usually dry, unless it rains really hard while the wind is blowing out of the south, and then it only drips over my husband’s side of the bed. I can live with that. We have also proven that the place is virtually indestructible, despite the best efforts of a five year old boy and his tricycle.

The reasons for our lack of progress can be summed up in two words. The first is ranching. Which can be divided into calving, branding, fencing, haying, gathering, shipping, feeding and fixing of all the stuff you broke while doing all that other stuff. Not a lot of time or motivation left to play Do It Yourselfer on the house.

The second word is sequences. Yeah, those nasty things we talked about last week. As in, everything has to be done in the proper order. Because you can’t just paint the walls. First you have to stain and seal the floor, and see exactly what color it comes out, so you can properly select your shade of paint from those gazillion versions of tan at the hardware store knowing full well when you put it on the walls it will somehow metamorphasize into buttercup yellow. And before you can finish the floor, you need to build the porch, because right now the living room door leads directly outside and doing anything to that floor besides shop-vaccing up the mud every few days would be an exercise in Do-It-All-Over-Again.

But you can’t build the porch until you figure out where you can borrow a backhoe to excavate the foundation and lay the water and sewer lines for the washing machine and sink and get the Hutterites over to pour the concrete, and until the last ten days it’s been raining every stinking day and now that it stopped you’re too busy haying.

It’s a vicious circle. But someday, I will once again live in a fully finished, fully functional abode. And I’ve heard they have room service at the rest home, too.

So what about the rest of you? Confession time. What half done project is lurking in your closet?

9 Responses

  1. BRAWAHAHAHAHA I call it the domino effect…I have to do “a” before “B” then “C”, etc..

    Unfinished projects, huh?

    I need new railing on my deck.
    The wood on my side deck is rotten and needs replacing
    I started working on the flower/shrubs in front of the house, but never finished.

    TOO many WIPs that were started and abandon.

    I expect a fancy place for my visit next year. Get busy. (hee hee)

  2. Cyndi,

    I am quite proud to say that amongst my many half done projects I can count only one book. And I got more like three quarters of the way through before I realized the whole premise just stunk, and it wasn’t going to work no matter how much I liked the characters. Otherwise, I’ve finished all seven of the other books I’ve started.

  3. Oh my oh me. Well, since we moved to the brand new condo there’s been no house work to be completed (unless you count the many many lightbulbs down the many many stairs, some of which need replacing, but not so many that you can’t see going down the stairs — and I take the elevator anyway), but in the two houses in which I’ve lived since we married — yes, we’re the stable type — the planned improvements never entirely took place until we were selling them.

    And let’s not discuss the bags of half-finished knitting, or the cross-stitch projects that I always finished when the kids were little and I was theoretically so busy, but had more time than I do now . . .

    Thanks for the good morning laugh. And just plain thanks!

  4. You name them, I got them! LOL Candle making kit never opened, jewelry kits, scrapbooking, cute patterns for curtains, ceiling tiles for painting, fabric paints, ack! I could go on for ever. We don’t even open one closet! LOL

  5. But it all looks like so much fun when you see it in the store. There’s never a sign that says: Warning- this is harder than it looks, will take five times as long as promised and never look quite like the one on the package.

  6. If you could see our basement, you wouldn’t need to ask that. We ARE going to finish “finishing” is someday. But first we have to move all that cra–er, formerly usable stuff out of there. Which entails devoting time to the task.

  7. I have three unfinished cross-stitch projects. I tried to complete a plumbing fixture today and managed to nearly cut off my finger and still not fix the durn thing. My deck needs sanded and stained before winter. But my writing is doing okay.

  8. I started a cross stitch baby pillow when I was pregnant with my first son. He arrived before it was complete so I put it away. When I got pregnant with number two, I got out the pillow and determined to finish it in time for his arrival. He also showed up before it was complete.

    My oldest is 25, my baby 23 and my plan now is to dig out the project once more when my DIL gets pregnant. If I can find it.

  9. OMG, KD, that sounds so like something I would do.

    And Susan…yes, half done is reserved for other stuff. Writing, I finish. The story won’t let me stop.

    My niece, the first grandchild in our family, owns a very intricate, counted cross-stitch Christmas stocking that I made. I did it while sitting at a promotional booth for three weekends straight with hours on end to kill. When my nephew was born, my sister asked me if I’d make him one, too. *insert hysterical laughter*

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