You and I are so alike in that we hate doing the finish. I don't know a woodworker that likes putting on a finish. Anyway, the Rottenstone and BLO mixture works pretty good and it doesn't artificially darken the stock. The commercial wood filler that I have (in Walnut) is darker than most wood stocks, so it can't help but darken the wood. You may or may not like it darker. I used the filler (in red mahogany) on a desk I made for the oldest grandson and it worked great. But...it's messy and I honestly just hate doing it. Would you like some left over wood filler?