“But Mercedes, what are you going to do when you run out of projects?” Run out of projects. Ha. HA! Never.
We lived in our first home for three years and by the time we moved, I still had so many projects I wanted to do. We have lived in this home now for almost two years and I have only “finished” three rooms. Part of this is because I move slowly. I have two kids who take up most of my time (and I wouldn’t want it any other way) and a husband who does not enjoy doing projects (which is totally fine!), so we’re not blitzing through projects over here. At least, for the most part.
But there isn’t anything wrong with working slowly! It was actually an intention that I set for myself before we moved into this house. I want to work slowly through things so that I can focus on doing what I really want.
If a tile selection that I love is going to blow the budget, I try to save for that selection and work on smaller things in the mean time rather than settling for a so-so option just to check the project off the list. Taking the time to design, select, and work through projects until they are exactly how you want them draws things out a little, but in the best way.
And small projects can be just as rewarding as the big ones! One of my most popular projects has been a sponge accent wall I did in Elliott’s nursery. It only took me about an hour and I used supplies I already had on hand, so it was free. Don’t feel like every project has to be a complete room makeover, just repainting a wall or rearranging furniture can satisfy that craving for change. Seasonal projects are also a great way to scratch the project itch – making something with your kids or friends for an upcoming holiday can be a nice change of pace from bigger reno projects.
While I don’t know what the future holds, truthfully I don’t see this being our forever home. One day I’d love to move to a home with a little more room for entertaining, especially once our kids are at an age where they are having friends over regularly. So that’s basically committing to at least 10 years worth of projects…Does that fill you with excitement or dread? For me, the idea of always having a next project is so exhilarating.
So if I do ever feel like I’ve maxed out this house on projects, moving is always on the table! But really, as you make updates to your home and your home value increases, you can often make a profit on your home. When we sold our first home, we made about triple our 20% down payment. So if I feel like I are running out of projects or pricing myself out of our neighborhood, we will probably start looking for our next house.
Now let’s say that you’re already in your forever home and you have no desire to ever move. Awesome! If it’s something you want, you can always find projects to do. Like I mentioned, it takes me a long time to work through my projects and I’m guessing you’re not too dissimilar to me. By the time I have “finished” every room in my house, I guarantee there will be things I will want to go back and change.
And there is no shame in going back and redoing a space when your style changes. That’s one of the great things about learning the skills to do this yourself! I am terrible – like really, really terrible – at making decisions for myself, but knowing that I have developed the skills to be able to redo something if I don’t love in a year or two is a liberating feeling.
Decision paralysis accompanies choices that feel risky, so when those choices carry less risk it gives me the freedom to choose what makes me happy in the moment without carrying such a heavy weight of what I think I might like in the future. After all, a new paint color is just a $50 gallon of paint and a girlfriend work party away.
If you really want to do a project but truly feel like there is no space in your house in need, think of ways you can serve! I guarantee you have a neighbor, friend, or family member who would love an extra set of hands for a project! This can get a bit tricky because you would never want to suggest that someone’s home isn’t good enough. Spoiler : your house is totally fine as is if it is what you want it to be! I have never, ever walked into someone’s house and though “hey, you really should do XYZ there” unless I have specifically been asked to help brainstorm ideas.
BUT some of the most fun projects are when you’re doing them for someone else. Start talking to those in your circle about how you’re looking for a fun project to help with and see if anyone bites. Just make sure it’s someone who you trust and who trusts you. We don’t want any strained relationships over picking the wrong shade of purple for your neice’s nursery.
Here’s what is on my project list for the near-ish future:
- Primary Bedroom (my current project)
- Jordan’s Office
- Backyard (which I’ve been slowly picking away at)
- TV Room
Each room I work on makes our house feel more like home to me and I don’t see myself not chasing that high anytime soon.