- we made a reasonable budget that we could actually afford.
- we didn't try to live in the house while under construction, though it would have saved money (THANK YOU to everyone who told me I was insane for even considering it, with an infant and a toddler and a gut renovation)
- we hired a general contractor to oversee all the other tradesmen (TOTALLY worth it)
- Kevin and I really like each other and are generally very happy together and almost never fight (literally -- in a normal year, we have maybe one fight, and it doesn't involve any yelling or throwing things)
Some of the work is self-inflicted, clearly. Maybe most of it. Early on in the project, it became obvious that I could just let Pam give me a few options for tile or color or whatever, and then pick from those. Easy. But it turns out that I care way too much to do that. And so I cannot count the hours that have been consumed in research, travel to stores, testing things, etc. and so on.
It's just my nature. (Actually, I blame the U Chicago. It taught me to research, and now I can't stop.) At this point, I've read a dozen books on color alone. Three or four dozen on different aspects of interior design. A dozen on renovating old houses in particular. A dozen on garden plans. Several on exterior painting. Countless shelter magazines (mostly browsed at Borders). So many hours on GardenWeb and Apartment Therapy online. I mean, I read fast, but that is still an awful lot of hours. And thank GOD for the library, or we would have spent our decorating budget on design books alone.
It's weird how you can be obsessive about things that you had no idea you would be obsessive about. It makes me wonder what I would be like if you pointed me at another field. Boat-building. Drain-cleaning. Window-washing. I suspect I would just as exhaustively research. Is that borderline pathologic? I was really starting to wonder that this week.
Kevin asked me what I would do when we actually moved in. He was afraid that I would just keep it up, and start hunting flea markets and stores for the perfect furniture. God, I hope not. My plan is to move in and collapse into a shuddering heap. And when I recover, to pour my energy into writing. Plus the SLF and DesiLit. And maybe the children. But mostly writing.
Is it just me? Does anybody else obsessively research tiny house details, or cry over paint colors? That sounds really bad when I type it out.