Open thread: What is your longest-running, unfinished house project? 2010 edition

Once a year around this time, I’m going to repeat the question: What is your longest-running, unfinished house project? I asked the question last May… and now 14 months later, I’m super happy to announce: Yankee Doodle! My 8-year project to get my interior window sashes is Done! (Minor pandemonium in progress, pictured above.) .

Ummm, I need to ‘fess up that my DIY-skills on this particular project entailed: Writing a check to nice painter Jim. Painting is something I can and often do myself, and I actually enjoy it. In fact, this is the first time I’ve ever hired anyone to do any interior painting in the house — I’ve painted every other room.
The paint was peeling on the exterior gables — and exterior painting on tall ladders is something I don’t do. So at the same time we called Jim in to do the outside, I had him knock off a few small jobs on the inside as well. Jobs that had been a noose around my neck for years. And woah, outsourcing was worth it. My house has breathed a big sigh of relief. Readers: It is really really good feng shui to finish tasks once started. Bad feng shui to leave tasks undone. I have been bad. I will reform. I will I will.
Now: moving up on the list to take pole position as my longest-running, unfinished house project is: Hem the pinch-pleat curtains that hang on the now-painted windows in the living room. I cobbled my pinch pleats from an estate sale find. For 7.5 years, the hems have been held together by straight pins. This project, I *will* do myself.
What about you? Commiseration, please: What is your longest-running, unfinished house project — and why? (And oh yeah, did you finish the project you listed last year, yet?)

  1. julie s says:

    We first moved into our 1952 ranch house 6 years ago. I was so excited when we moved in, but my teenage sons were not. I assured them that this house was going to be fabulous, it just needed a little paint. I was so enthusiastic, that I decided to take on painting every single room in the house myself, including stripping wallpaper in the bathroom and painting that. I thought surely, this will only take a couple of days. And it did, except my painting job was, shall we say, less than professional. There are terrible drip marks everywhere. Most of them now are hidden by pictures, but I know they’re there. Every year I say “this is the year I sand the walls and fix this once and for all”. Well, we’ll see, maybe this year?

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  3. judy says:

    I’m a little late to the comment party, but thought I’d share my New Year’s resolution – which is exactly about this very subject! On January 1st (this year) I resolved to finish all the projects I had started…….(wait for it)…….the year we bought the house! That was 2007 (Jan 5th to be exact).

    There is a long list of offenses, but the worst is the really nice vent hood in the kitchen that was hung a little over 3 years ago and never vented. Doesn’t sound to bad until I fill in the rest – the old vent hood was there, ducted through a giant hole in the ceiling which remains and is stuffed full of newspaper now to prevent the kitchen from being open into the attic.

    Yes, I am making progress on some of those tasks. But I have also started new ones in the meantime. A friend once stopped by amid the chaos and told me I have “project ADD”. I think she’s right.

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