Building The Happier House

Costa Rica Cost of Living Update: Britt Decaf Coffee (12 ounces)— $11

My husband convinced me that we should move into our house while it’s under construction.

“How bad can it be?” he said.

“But there are no windows or doors,” I replied. “Isn’t that more like camping?”

“It’ll be exciting,” he promised. “We’re finally doing it! We’re building a house!”

So here I am, sitting on the floor. I would be sitting on a piece of furniture but we don’t own any yet. Furniture seems a little premature when there are more pressing things to purchase: steel beams and wires, sinks and toilets, and all the things that ultimately make up a house. In an attempt to keep track of our budget, I’m always trying to return something that was ordered.

“Do we need this?” I’ll ask our builder, pointing to an item on the receipt.

“Yes, it’s a breaker box.”

“Is it necessary?”

“Yes, unless you plan on not having electricity.”

“And this— meters of PVC pipe? How much does one house need?” Apparently, a lot.

But I have to give Rob credit: it is exciting living in a home that is being constructed around you. I get to wake up to an assortment of banging. I used to attempt to decipher these sounds. Is that a bulldozer? Are there people on my roof? Are there people in my room?

Today there is a crew stuccoing the house. I know this because I was taking a shower when they propped up a ladder against the bathroom window. This is a great way to meet new friends. It quickly gets all the pleasantries out of the way, and I tend to look my best with a head full of shampoo and a startled expression.

Rob and our builder ensure that with each day we are making progress. And it’s true. Every evening I walk around and see more and more things completed. What was once a mishmash of wires and paint cans is slowing becoming something more spectacular than I could have ever imagined.

Rob never ceases to amaze me, and I’m positive I could never accomplish this on my own. He’s constantly thinking ahead, and never lets a setback bring him down. He’s the first to calm my anxiety while at the same time handing a worker a cold glass of water. He’s been on top of this entire project, from the design of the gardens to the little glow-in-the-dark tiles at the bottom of the pool. His vision is certain and steadfast. He has never wavered, not in our marriage and not during this build, one of the biggest decision of our lives. I’m starting to believe that this dream can come true, and I’m starting to believe that the future will be as bright as I allow it to be.

Rob was right about a lot of things. Maybe I need to listen to him more, that’s if I could hear anything above the tile saw.

To read more about how my story began, check out Happier Than A Billionaire.