My husband and I are in the midst of building a house, and I am drowning in choices. This is what my kitchen floor looks like right now.
I’m covered in paint chips, lighting ideas and cabinet layouts. Perhaps many of you don’t care much about the details of a house. If so, you’re likely nowhere near as stressed out as I am right now on a daily basis, and I congratulate you. As a visual person, I’m sweating over every tiny choice to be made, and seemingly, there are thousands.
Here are some of the questions I’ve had to ponder over the last few weeks:
- Which type of brick? (There are types?)
- What kind of oven? Gas? Electric? Dual-fuel? Which brand?
- Do you want round or egg-shaped interior door knobs? What finish on those knobs? Nickel? Chrome? Oil Rubbed Bronze?
- For your kitchen cabinets, do you want shaker style? Shaker with bead? Raised panel?
- Overhead light or wall sconce in the bathroom?
- Do you want granite counters? Quartz? Marble? What color? How thick?
- Which type of counter edge profile do you want? Round? Eased? Bevel?
- What shape stairwell handrail do you want?
Are you kidding me? I have to select a STAIRWELL HANDRAIL SHAPE?!! AUUUGGGGGHHHH. That’s it. I quit. I’m going to find a hole to hide in somewhere.
I realize in the scheme of the world’s problems, this ranks lowest. I’m grateful to be getting a new house, and ending the last few years of renting. I just never knew there were so many details and choices that go into planning a house that you’d like your family to comfortably live in for the rest of your life. And I’m kinda busy with things like, you know, parenting, planning meals, going to the grocery store, cooking, helping with homework, doing laundry and blogging. I don’t have a lot of time to spend on stairwell handrails.
One other choice I’ve had to make is flooring. My husband and I knew without any doubt that we wanted hardwood floors throughout the first floor of the house. They look great. They’re easy to sweep up. Most importantly, they don’t stain when your 6-year-old drops her juice box and half-eaten red lollipop on them.
We don’t have a basement, so our first floor is on a slab. We were able to choose between laminate floors and real hardwoods. Most of the time I don’t like anything I might consider pretend or fake. It feels like I’m spending money to get less quality and durability. Like I’m being cheap, and I’ll pay for it later. I learned that floors are one area where that’s not necessarily the case, especially when it comes to laminate wood flooring. Sure, I could spend the money to have real hardwoods installed plank by expensive plank. Or, I could spend a lot less and actually get floors that are MORE stain resistant, fade resistant, moisture resistant and impact resistant. Done.
Why can’t all the other choices be this easy?
P.S. Even if you don’t have a builder, like me, they say laminate floors are very easy to install, even for the do-it-yourselfer. Just a tip from one money-saving parent to another.
P.P.S. In an upcoming post, I’ll share some of the other choices we’ve made to make our family home look great and last — we hope — through two kids, a cat and a forthcoming dog.