May 28, 2011

Tying up loose ends

I have issues with ends and endings.  Run-on sentences that don't end?  Guilty.  Crying at happy endings? Again, affirmative.  Split ends? I don't want to talk about it, but thanks for noticing.

But mainly, loose ends.  You know, those projects that get *almost* done?  Everything except one, (usually tiny), final step.  I tell myself I'll get around to that last bit...tomorrow.  Or eventually.  But I don't. Which is how we wound up living with unfinished trim in our bonus room for two (or was it three?) years.  It's why I am hauling several tubs of half-finished (or never-even-started!) craft projects out of the attic of the old house, and trying to decide what to take and what to leave.  (Well, donate or throw away.  I wouldn't actually LEAVE them in the old house.)  It's why I'm STILL hauling stuff out of the old house, even though we officially moved three weeks ago.

New house, fresh start, new resolve.  It's time to start finishing things before I start something else.  To that end, I am dedicating this summer to tying up all the loose ends of moving and settling in.  By the time Labor Day (and football season) rolls around, I hope I can pronounce them all finished, as far as the eye can see.  So every week this summer, I'll update you with my efforts...successful or not.

I figure it's good to start with baby steps - something fast, easy, and almost fun.  Like hanging a wood blind.

When we were preparing to move into this house, all window blinds were hung, except one.  (Apparently the former owners were had "loose end" issues, too.)  "How hard can this be?" I thought as I snagged some brackets on a trip to Lowe's.  Harder than I thought - the blind is bigger than the brackets I bought.

Undaunted, I went online and discovered the world of "high profile" vs. "low profile" blinds.  I got sidetracked and it wasn't until a few weeks had past that I remembered to order the brackets (sidenote:  if you need blind parts, check eBay; wayyyy cheaper than the blind replacement specialty e-tailers.)  And a few days later, they showed up.   Thank goodness eBay sellers and mail carriers follow through, even when I forget what I ordered.

Before: window clear, floor covered
Before I made this resolution, those brackets would have sat around for several days, eventually shuffled into a junk drawer or tucked away in some obscure location, never to be seen or thought of  again.  Not this time.  As of yesterday, the blind is hung (thanks to middle son for his help.)  Yes, that's the valance leaning up against the bookcase.  No, it's not hung. (The clips I ordered were for the wrong size - gahhh!  But  I have contacted the seller to arrange for a return and exchange.)  And in the interest of full disclosure, after I took these before-and-after shots, I had to locate a tilt wand. They're not as easy to find as you might imagine. Fortunately an extra old blind at the old house had one that was the right size.  But I did, and I got it installed - another loose end tied tight.

While we were in the bonus room/man cave with ladder and screwdrivers handy, I also re-attached the fan canopies and air duct vents that we loosened so we could paint this room before we moved in.

(The more I think about it, the more I am convinced this "loose end syndrome"  is a debilitating affliction, perhaps a disability.  It's definitely a congenital defect, as our children suffer from it, too.)

After:  window covered, floor clear

Since we were on a roll, I also put away the boxes we used to hold files during the move (yeah, I know how many days ago that was) and tidied and vacuumed.  The man cave is not finished yet, but it definitely looks better than it did before we hung that blind!  What a difference tying up just one little loose end can make.

I'm not sure what my next loose end(s) to tie up will be...probably whatever has me at my wit's end and fit to be tied.  Stay tuned!

Here's to a summer of happy tying,