Tag Archives: about us

What Color Is This? & Other Little Things Couples Disagree About

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When Justin and I were first dating, I wore a shirt that brought out a long-standing and recurrent disagreement between the two of us. The shirt was obviously blue, except that Justin was completely committed to the idea that it was purple. Ever since, we simply cannot agree on the colors of things. Case in point: last night we were evaluating the paint I picked out for the dining room. I was going for a shade between blue and green, but when I got it on the wall, I wasn’t sure I liked it. It’s SO blue, except that Justin insists that it’s really very green.  (The color is  “Geyser” on the middle of the front swatch.) The argument doesn’t always involve blue, though–pink or orange, black or navy, gray or muted green–name two colors that could be confused for one another, and we have debated them.

I imagine that all couples have these insignificant topics of contention they simply can’t agree on. Aside from color, Justin and I routinely disagree about whether/what preparation is needed before getting in bed at night (it’s never already made, which enables this conversation to continually occur). I absolutely have to straighten and smooth all the wrinkles from the sheets; Justin climbs in regardless of the level of disarray and makes himself comfortable. When he goes to bed before me, a conflict of interests (his need to remain comfortably arranged vs. my need to straighten and rearrange) inevitably occurs.

These silly disagreements always remind me that no matter how well you know a person and how many weighty, important issues you feel exactly the same about, there is always still a fundamental, insurmountable divide between you and someone else. Knowing that Justin and I stare at the same wall and see two different things–and that I literally cannot ever see it through his eyes–feels baffling to me.

It also seems like knowing how to resolve small and unimportant issues is maybe the real art of making a relationship work. Odds are a relationship where two parties don’t agree on foundational topics like politics, religion, money, work/life balance, etc, won’t get too far anyway. But working out which tool is the correct one for washing a pan, how plastic bags ought to be stored in drawers, whether it’s acceptable to play a musical instrument while watching television with another person (this has really been discussed on multiple occasions in our house)–these are the questions life is made of.

Do you have these silly sorts of disagreement with your significant other? If so, how do you resolve them?

How It All Began

This whole thing started in February 2013, when my then-boyfriend and I bought the craziest looking house on the block.

Scratch that–let’s really take it from the top.

This whole thing started almost 7 years ago, in November 2007. Justin and I had just started dating, and one of the first things we did together was to paint the living room of his rental house a pretty bold apple green. Even though I kind of look back now and think, “That looks exactly like the color a 22 and 23-year old would paint the living room of a rental house,” I still find it to be pretty fabulous in that way.

From then on, we made small improvements to every place we lived, but we also had lots of ideas about big improvements we weren’t allowed to make–and really wouldn’t have made sense in a rental anyway. We dreamed about being homeowners and having the freedom to tear up anything we wanted!

Fast forward to the winter of 2012. I’ve been a real estate window shopper for several years, which means basically that I like to cruise Zillow and the local MLS just to see what’s out there. In late December, I happened to get an idea that one particular thing that was out there was in our budget (nope), might be a good place for us (completely wrong location), and that we should get someone to show it to us. Surprisingly, Justin agreed to see it, and though all of the wrong things about this house became pretty apparent in person, a chat with our real estate agent convinced us that NOW was the time to buy. Suddenly we were house shopping for real!

After about three weeks of relentlessly searching the MLS for a place in our new budget and preferred neighborhood, I had the inventory pretty well memorized when I figured I’d just go peek in the windows of a house I’d seen online several times and decided it is clearly not “the one.” When I got there, I realized I’d actually seen it in person, too, and thought it was a little freaky in a Tim Burton “weird-but-not-sinister” kind of way. It looked like this:

Freaky bungalow with a crazy yard before renovation

Believe it or not, this turned out to be our house after all. Great location, right price, perfect for two people who’d been waiting to sand, paint, tile (and who knows what else!) the hell out of their own home.

Now, not everyone was super on-board. The first time my mother was inside, the real estate agent asked her what she thought and she said, “As long as they like it!” I still enjoy bringing that up.

So we closed on the house in late February, spent a month sanding and painting almost literally every sand-able and paint-able surface in the place, and moved in around Easter.

In that time, we also got engaged! This is me on the Brooklyn Bridge a few minutes before the proposal. Clearly I have no idea that it’s coming or that I really need to practice my “showcase” hand:

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We got married in October 2013 and had the reception at our house. Here we are on the big day:

View More: http://climerphoto.pass.us/brittany-justin-wedding
(Photo credit: Climer Photography)

And that’s pretty much the long and short of it. After being in our home for almost a year and a half, we still love it, and we are still working on it almost every day. BUT, we no longer live in the craziest looking house on the block.

Dark gray bungalow with a yellow door and white trim

Reno pics coming soon!