Another Parade of Homes has come and gone. And once again "west beats east" and "low beats high." It was nice to see at least a few practical, attractive, quality built, affordable homes in traditional American architectural styles.

Less impressive are the seven-figure homes on the benches. A few multimillion-dollar homes had a lack of craftsmanship that would have been unacceptable in a Habitat for Humanities home. Some of those homes were all about quantity, not quality.

My wife and daughter's pet peeves: How dim must a builder be to dimly light laundry rooms, bathrooms and closets? Or fail to put a mirror in front of a makeup vanity? Or put a door on a water closet that can't be closed when you're actually in there.

"A man's home is his castle" is a political expression of human rights, privacy and freedom, and was never meant as a home design mandate.

Stucco, brick, faux stone, rough-hewn timbers, copper and a too busy roof line all have their place in building, but together they have all the appeal of a banana split made with a dill pickle and scoops of vanilla, strawberry and chocolate ice cream slathered in salsa. Good taste and money are not conjoined twins.

Clark Larsen