Now I'm not complaining, even though it may sound like it, because it's really very exciting to even have all these options. But I'm not a good decision maker, I think I'd rather just put off making the decision versus making the wrong decision. I question myself constantly. I knew we were going to have a lot of decisions to make regarding the house, but it seems they're mostly getting dumped on us at once, and it's a bit overwhelming. And remember, being pregnant, I probably shouldn't be making any major decisions anyway what with all the hormones running amok. Luckily I have Vince to keep me grounded, and not get too crazy. And also luckily, we either pretty much agree on things, or about certain things he just doesn't care enough to argue.
About a month ago we had to pick the brick and stone for the exterior for the house. That was really hard. It's not like a paint color that I could simply paint over if I decided I didn't like it. We're talking about a major permanent decision. Or very costly to change anyway. But we got past that one, and honestly it wasn't too painful. After looking and looking and looking at houses in our development, houses in our rental development, random houses as we drove by going to or from whatever it was we were going to or from and not really finding anything we were crazy about, we pulled into our builders spec house to meet with them, looked at the brick they had on that house and both decided we wanted ours to be just like that. All that agonizing for nothing. Vince liked the stone they had chosen too, but I thought it was too yellow and wanted Austin stone, a creamy white stone. He went along with my preference, maybe just to keep the peace or maybe just so we could get on with life, I don't know, but we were finally able check off that decision.
Then, a couple of weekends ago we picked the carpet for the bedrooms, and the hard flooring for the rest of the house. Vince hates carpet, and since we're only having it put in the bedrooms, I pretty much had free reign on that choice. We're having the builders put vinyl flooring through the rest of the living space, and Vince will be putting in hardwood flooring as time and costs allow on his own once we're moved in. That decision saved us $12K, so I can live with vinyl for now. That was one more decision made.
Last Monday we drove into Fort Worth under threats of severe thunderstorms to pick the appliances for the kitchen. Of course I went over budget, we all knew that I would. But we were happy to find out that we were able to get Jen Air appliances for less than the Kitchen Aid appliances that I had back in California. Double convection wall ovens - check. Six burner professional cook top - check. Stainless ceiling hood - check. So that was pretty much a no brainer. Except for the dishwasher. Go with the Jen Air dishwasher so the handle would match the ovens, or save $250 and go with a GE dishwasher with all the same applications, but the handle didn't match. They're all made by Whirlpool anyway. At first I went with the GE, feeling guilty about going over the budget. Vince wasn't too sure of my decision, but it's my kitchen so he wasn't going to argue. No surprise to him when I changed my mind four days later and told him I wanted to go with the Jen Air dishwasher. He made the call, and changed the order. We already have a refrigerator and microwave, so some of the appliances will match, and others won't. But why spend the money on a refrigerator and microwave when you already have one? Maybe for the rich, but not for us.
After leaving the appliance store we headed to Arlington to go pick lighting fixtures for the house. I had no idea how many lighting fixtures we would have to decide on. So many, that we had to go back on Saturday and finish up because we ran out of time. Luckily the thunderstorm really hit while we were in the store, and by time we left it had moved on. So, how many lights did we want in our garage? What about the carriage lights? Two by the garage and two by the front door. What about the light that hangs in the exterior entryway by the front door? And the interior entryway light? The formal dining light? The dining lights in the kitchen? The living room, ceiling fan or just a light? The stairway sconces? The master hall sconces? The bedrooms lights? Again, ceiling fans or just lights. The bedroom hallway lights? The fixtures for the bathrooms, the powder room, and the tiny little room that the master toilet is in? What about the master closet? What about the doorbell? The doorbell! I thought she was kidding, but no, we got to pick what our doorbell looked like and what the chime box looked like. No, we did not pick the Texas star doorbell. By the way, we just picked the simple "I don't even want to see it" chime box. But did you know you can spend upwards of $100 on the box for your doorbell chimes? Ridiculous. My head was reeling. The styles, the sizes, the finishes. Thankfully they had a little area set up for the kids with a TV/VCR, videos, coloring books and crayons. The kids were amazingly well behaved. I'm supposed to get a call today to see how we did on our lighting budget. After we made our choices on Monday we were up to $1,400, half of our lighting budget. I don't think we had $1,400 left worth on choices for Saturday, so I'm anxious to see how we did. I'm hoping we came in pretty well under budget to help make up for my kitchen over expenditures.
Tuesday we had to drive to Weatherford to the cabinet makers. Again, style choices, wood choices. Vince likes really rustic knotty wood like hickory. I like smooth sleek low grain wood like cherry. But I was determined to keep within our budget, so we went with a knotty alder in a fairly simple style with a rope detail on the corners. We don't pick a stain color until we meet with the painter and choose the interior house color as well. The cabinet maker said the amount of knotting in the wood varies, and would use wood with a low amount of knots for me. So some character, but not too much. I'm just not a rustic kind of gal but since I will be living out in the boonies I figured a little was alright.
So I think all we have left to choose is the cabinet stain, the interior paint color, and the granite for the counter tops. I don't think I'll be able to choose the cabinet stain or the granite until I know what the other will look like. I hope everyone involved is patient, because my brain hurts.
And just to throw in one more gut wrenching decision, Vince wants to know what we're going to call this baby if it's a girl. We've had a boy's name picked since we had Annamaria, and for some reason he's very anxious to get a name out of me, but I just don't work that way. I like to have it narrowed down, then wait until I meet the baby. How do you name someone you've never met before? Vince picks the boy's names, so I can just go with that, but after three girls it's becoming harder and harder to find a name that I feel good about.
Again, not complaining, I'm just saying.