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New House Q & A (post 1)

Hi everyone!  Sorry the Q & A took me forever!  You all asked a lot of questions!  Plus I tend to ramble so when you put those two things together you get a Q & A post that goes on for miles.  :)  I split the post in two so if you don’t see your question in this post hopefully it will show up in the next one!

My husband and I are thinking about building a house.  We are so nervous!  What advice do you have to finally pull the trigger and just do it?  

Oh boy.  What to say to this one…  I would love to say just go for it!  But I have to be honest.  So my answer is this – take your time to decide if building is the best plan for you.  When I think about our experience building a house, the best way I can explain it is to compare it to being in the newborn stage with a new baby.  It’s amazing and wonderful and the best.  It’s also exhausting and overwhelming and sometimes not the best.  Building a house comes with a lot of work and it’s very time consuming.  You will be taking on as many hours as a part time job (or more depending on the size of your house and how custom you make it) so make sure you are in a position to spend that kind of time on it.  Parts of the process are so fun and exciting, but other parts are exhausting and stressful.  It’s hard on your marriage – and not because you want white cabinets and he doesn’t – that stuff can be worked out.  It’s hard because you reach a point where you are both so exhausted from all of the work building involves that you have nothing left to give.  Kinda like in the newborn stage when you snap at each other not because you are mad, but because you have been up all night listening to a crying baby for weeks and are just plain tired.  Aside from the constant decision making, problems and glitches pop up right and left and you have to solve them (the solution always costs more money).  The never ending finances of it all can wear on you.  You are making a big investment with your hard earned cash and you feel a lot of pressure to get it right and not make mistakes.  Plus you feel rushed.  Time is money when you build and you have to make decisions quickly to keep everything moving.  (I have definitely struggled with the quick part!)  Kenny and I celebrated our 16th wedding anniversary a couple of weeks ago and you know what we gave each other?  A high five for surviving the past year.   We both agree that if we still love each other after this experience, we’re not going anywhere.  :)

Now that I’ve scared you to death, let me also say that I’m so happy we did this.  I have LOVED so many parts of the building process.  I mean how cool to design a house that is totally and uniquely you!?  I’ve met so many wonderful people.  Some who will be life long friends.  I adore my house and I feel truly blessed every time I’m in it.  It’s an amazing process to see something that was just an idea in your head actually come to life.  Each stage is so exciting.  So to me, all of the headaches will absolutely be worth it.  Did I make mistakes?  Yes.  Are there things I wish I would have done differently?  For sure.  Do I want to do it again?  Not any time soon.  :)  But still SO worth it in the end.  My best advice to you is to just understand what the next year or two will be like for you and your family while you are building before you decide to pull the trigger.  Make sure you are in a position to take on the project (from a time and financial stand point) and if so, JUST DO IT!!  :)  I’m so glad we did!

** Side note – there are SO many things I have learned from this process.  Things that we did that made the process smoother and things we wish we would have done differently.  I’m going to write a post including all of my best tips for building a house.  As soon as I recover from building ours.  :)  

Would you please post a sketch or drawing of your floor plan?  I’ve been following along and would really love to know how it all fits together.

I totally understand why so many of you have asked this!  First of all, I think the main layout of my house will make a lot more sense when I share more pics after we’ve moved in.  But as far as sharing a complete floor plan, I’ve chosen not to.  While I’ll share a lot of our rooms/spaces as I decorate them on the blog, I think it’s important to keep some things private.  You all know I’m such an open person and I would love to share everything and then some with all of you!  I truly consider my readers to be friends.  But this is our home.  And I can’t be naive to the fact that I have no control over who is reading my blog.  So some things about our home I’ll share and other things I’ll have to try really hard not to.  :)  I hope you all understand!

What is the square footage of your beautiful home?  Bedrooms/Bathrooms?

Hmmm.. another tough question that keeps popping up.  :)  There is a master bathroom, powder bath, shared office/guest bathroom, Kole’s bathroom, the girls’ share a bathroom, and a small pool bathroom outside. As far as square footage goes – I’ll just tell you that our current house we’ve lived in for the last 11 years is 2300 square feet.  The new house is obviously bigger than that.  :)  It’s big enough to have lots of friends over, to make lots of memories in, and to be a marvelous place for my kids to play hide and seek.  How did I do avoiding that question?  I know that’s exactly what you all wanted to hear.  ;)

I would love to know where you picked your carpet and what you chose for your runner?

I’d love to share places I shopped with anyone in the San Diego area!  Just send me an e-mail for details. As far as the carpet runner, I let all of you choose and went with the trellis pattern from this post.  

Carpet is being installed today!  You will all be in big trouble if it doesn’t look good.  Seriously.  I will hunt you down.  ;)  I will post pics of the stairs when they are done!

I would love to hear more about your paint and lighting selections.

Lots of questions about paint and lights!  Once we’ve moved in the house and are settled I plan to do a post sharing all of the paint colors I chose (so glad to have paint behind me – that was a time consuming stage!).  I’ll answer the most common paint questions I keep getting here and you can e-mail if you are wondering about another color.  If you’re not in a hurry, I’ll share them all in a month or so.  Same with the lighting.  At some point when I have time I will share all of the lights I chose (lighting was one of my favorite parts of this process – I love fun fixtures!).  E-mail me if you want a light source ASAP and I will do my best to get back to you.  I have some fun lights left to show you!  :)

What color/brand did you end up painting the exterior of the house?

The exterior color of our house is a custom color.  We took the color “Capricorn” by Frazee and made it just a tad darker.

Some of you have asked about Frazee paint.  It’s a paint that is made in California specifically for climate conditions in the southwestern US.  There are Frazee paint stores all over California, Arizona and Nevada so that may explain why some of you have never heard of Frazee paint.  Frazee is a sister company to Kwal so if you can’t get Frazee you can try getting the same color through Kwal Paint.

I love the wall color in the foyer.  What color is it?

Entry paint is the main color I used throughout the body of my house.  It’s “Seattle” by Frazee and I adore it!  It’s a great grey.  Not too blue.  Not too green.  Not too purple.  Not too light.  Not too dark. :)  If you are thinking of painting something in your house grey I would recommend painting a big swatch on the wall and then checking it out at different times of the day and in different lighting.  Greys are tricky!  There were so many shades of grey that I loved on-line but when I put them up in my house they just didn’t look right.  Then certain greys I picked looked great in some spaces in my house and not great in others depending on the lighting.  So take the time to really test your grey paint and you will be much happier with the end result!

Can you please share the color you are using for Kole’s room?  I’m looking for a nice grey with a brown tone and am having a hard time finding it!

Sure!  Kole’s room paint is “Himalayan Trek” by Benjamin Moore.  We also painted Kenny’s office and a bathroom that color.  It’s definitely a brown grey.

 That sometimes looks grey.  

 And sometimes looks brown.  Tricky stuff.  :)  
Fun label hardware for the bench seat drawers.

I love the color of your scrapbook room!  Could you let me know what color/brand it is?

Thanks!  Rather fond of that color myself.  :)  It’s “Tinted Ice” by Dunn Edwards.

What are the dimensions of your pool?

Our pool is 42 x 22.

What is a shamu shelf?

A shamu shelf is a shallow “shelf” or spot in a pool.  (I think there are other names for them.)  They are used to lounge in and are great for babies/small kids to splash and play on.  Some of you were asking about our pool layout.  I love curvy pools, but we decided on a rectangle shaped pool and put the hot tub inside of the pool for one reason – safety.  We wanted to be able to cover the whole thing when we aren’t using the pool and keep it totally safe for little ones running around.  We made the pool extra wide so we could fit the hot tub, a shamu shelf and still have a lane for swimming laps.  

They just installed the cover last week!  (It’s not quite finished – the coping – large blocks – still need to be installed over the ledge so you don’t see the mechanics of the cover.)

So now we can go from this…

 To this…

with the flip of a switch.  These covers aren’t the prettiest or the most cost effective option, but they definitely give you peace of mind when you have a three year old on the loose.  Which was our goal.  :)

 Speaking of my three year old – he is a huge fan of the turtles!

We took a quick break from packing the other night to swim (we are having a typical San Diego Fall – hot!)  and the pool is definitely a hit.  :)
I will be back soon with a few more answers to your questions!  
Enjoy your day!

xoxo, Erin
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26 thoughts on “New House Q & A (post 1)

  1. Oh MY, how I love that gray in the foyer/main area of the house. I wonder if there’s a comparable BM color here on the East Coast. It’s AMAZING! Thanks for sharing all of these beautiful photos. I’m looking forward to the light fixture post! I need a new one for our foyer and am swooning over that RH orb one you chose. :)

  2. Erin, thank you so much fo sharing all those things on your house. We appreciate you taking the time to connect with all of us. Just wanted to say that I am glad you are keeping somethings private. You are a wonderful person and we appreciate you.

  3. Stephanie – I bet you can find that grey! Check Home Depot. I’m always amazed at how many colors they can match. Thank you!

    Stephanie #2 :) – Such a kind comment! Thank you so much. That means a lot. And I love connecting with all of you! :)

  4. Thank you BeautiNWisdom! I really appreciate you saying that. It’s so easy for me to doubt my decisions!

    Thanks Hanna! Always fun to hear from you! :)

  5. Thanks for answering MY question!!! Pull the trigger and just do it. build a house! I love what you have shared so far and can’t wait to see and hear more! Thanks Erin. Love all of it so far.

  6. Ahh, this post is so exciting! I really enjoy seeing all the new house photos and how it has come together!

    I also really love everything you have chosen and that gray is really beautiful.

  7. I have loved following along on this journey with you Erin and really appreciate that you take time out from your no-doubt crazy schedule to keep your blog followers updated. It must be so exciting to be almost at the finishing line!

    Totally respect you wanting to keep details private – you’re always going to get people weighing in with negative, misguided and uninformed comments about things that are really none of their business (I’ve seen what a hard time you can be given on your blog and I’m always impressed with how graciously you deal with it) so why give them any more ammunition to spoil what is an amazing experience for you and your family to have.

    Hope you’re not finding this last bit too stressful – just imagine your first Christmas morning in that beautiful family room and I’m sure that will get you through!

  8. You’re so welcome Ashley! I hope I didn’t scare you too bad with all of the down sides of building! It really is a love/hate situation! :) Let me know if you decide to pull the trigger. I am more than happy to answer any questions you have!

    Thanks Lynnsey!

    Mags – oh my word. What a kind thing to say! I so appreciate that. It has definitely been more of a challenge sharing the new house stuff on my blog. I’m so grateful for readers like you who are uplifting and help make the experience a positive one vs. a negative one. And your advice of picturing Christmas morning is just what I needed to hear this morning! :) Truly – thank you so much.

  9. Thanks for sharing this. It’s all so pretty! My husband and I have been looking for the prefect grey-ish brown-ish taupe-ish color for many months and I think this post has solved our problem! :)

  10. I agree about keeping some things private. That being said I am not happy with how secretive you have been with your kitchen. ;-) I am dying to see it! The rest of the house turned out so beautifully that I cannot wait to see how the kitchen has turned out.

  11. Oh man I wish I had seen this post before I bought “gray” paint for my dining room which totally looks blue on the walls! I’ve had the hardest time finding a great shade of gray.

    Love your house! Everything is gorgeous! And I don’t blame you for not sharing the layout although I would love to see it.

  12. Erin! It has been so fun following your home building adventure. I am only a senior in college but have always loved the home building process. My parents were planning on building a home while I was in middle school and I followed them throughout the whole process, scanning architecture and home plan books with my Dad each night. They ended up finding and falling in love with an older home that needed work towards the end of the planning process so they never went through with the building process. I hope one day to be able to build my very own dream home. Your children are so lucky to have this home created out of love for them by their parents to grow up in! I cannot wait to see it finished! Enjoy!

  13. Yea Jennie! So glad that helped! :)

    Tracy! You made me laugh! :) That was not really intentional! But I realized a couple of months ago that I hadn’t shared kitchen pics yet and then figured I’d just wait until it wasn’t such a dusty mess! They will be coming for sure! :)

    Thank you Nada! I know! Grey paint is so hard, right!? The grey paint in my master bedroom looks like a different color throughout the day! Sometimes grey, sometimes blue, sometimes a hint of purple. Definitely tricky! Try out Seattle but who knows. It might look totally different in your house than in mine!

  14. The pool is so pretty Erin. I love it! I love all the choices you made! My favorite is the orb. I am going to buy one and have it installed very soon. Thanks for the inspiration! :)

    Now, if I can only find a room to put the fun fan in!!!


  15. Your house is BEAUTIFUL. I bet it is such a dream come true for you guys. I haven’t seen one of your choice that I wouldn’t have chosen myself! We built a house 3 years ago but it wasn’t that stressful, mostly because it’s not a huge custom home, haha! But it’s still home and I still love it. Your house is so dreamy though!

  16. Oh, I want kitchen pictures too! Although, I think the scrapbook room and the backyard might be my favorite rooms anyway!

    We did not pull the trigger this fall…which I think is a good decision for us right now, but the door is still WIDE open to build in a few more years….hopefully :)

  17. Loved reading about all the details of your new house, and I totally respect keeping certain things private. Good for you! Love the lighting I’ve seen so far…you know I’m dying to see more! ;) I actually have to turn in our final lighting selections this week…eek! I’m still on the lookout for the perfect chandelier for the study – preferably a drum shade. I’d love to take a peek at the light you selected for your home office.

  18. Thank you so much everyone!

    Cathy – you will love your orb! They are so stunning.

    Tiffany – so sweet of you to say! I’m sure your house is beautiful!

    So exciting Ashley! Gather as many inspiration photos as possible while you’re waiting! The more specific you can be with what you want the better.

    Jen – I shared a pic of my office light in my last post. E-mail me if you want the source! I’ll share Kenny’s office light in a post soon too. :)

    Thanks Becky!

    Anonymous – Not sure what you mean by that. I haven’t deleted any comments for this post (it’s rare that I ever have to). There haven’t been any negative comments, unless yours was meant to be.

  19. Hey anonymous please sign your name if your going to post rude comments, because your making the rest of us who do post anonymously look bad. Not sure why anyone would post anything negative on this thread, Erin has a right to privacy so respect that.

  20. Such a gorgeous house! I love checking in & watching the progress & look forward to seeing more pictures as you move in! It’s a great time of year to move with the holidays looming.. how fun it will be to put your tree up in your new home! Good luck with the move!

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