But it's a challenge well worth the doing. And unlike many recent self-imposed challenges, it's not at all arbitrary - this gets us a house big enough for a family, a yard big enough for the Greatest Dog In The World, and an investment that if properly managed should return many times its cost in value. The last time the house sold it was for 150k more than we've purchased it. Even if all we do is break even in terms of repairs, that's a big bump in value when we decide to eventually sell.
And it's a lovely house - very bright and airy, with a truly grand living room for entertaining, and a kitchen that has everything I could have wanted. I'm very excited - never been happier to be half a million in debt! Well. Never been half a million in debt before, either. Yet the feeling is less dread-inspiring, and more confidence-inspiring than I would have credited.