Getting Ideas Out of My Head

There are a lot of things to do in this house, and we've only just begun to scrape the surface of what needs doing. But, as with all my projects, I've started with a huge pile of notes. Notes help focus my thinking - when I have a project bouncing around in my head, I can't stop thinking about it until I write it down. Sometimes, it means that I just stop thinking about that project, either because I've written a complete plan, or because it's no longer worrying me. Other times, I keep thinking about it, and return again and again to my notes, eventually ending up with sometime amazing. Often, I'll just delete (or throw away) my notes, because whatever was worrying me at the time was really not all that important - but I didn't realize that until I wrote it all down.

For example, here's a notepad sketch I've made of the house itself; drawn from memory, so the exact window count may be off, and the dimensions leave a lot to be desired, but it gives the general impression:

What, this doesn't count as an architectural drawing? Would it work if it were blue?
That drawing may not look like much, but it helps me immensely. As I plan where I want new outlets and network jacks, I can use that sketch to judge the best spots for installation. I want a telephone line in the upstairs and downstairs entry ways - but while there is the perfect space downstairs, between those windows on the far wall, if I put a phone upstairs it would be in the way of the stairs. I'll have to figure out someplace else for that.

If I didn't write things down, all the negatives would crowd out the positives; sometimes, that's fine - that roof really does need fixed, and I should probably focus on it. Then again, sometimes those negatives will end up making me do something stupid. For instance, when I'm thinking about where to put phone and network jacks, my first thought is my current living room. I don't have network connectivity to the two computers sitting there! Quick, install some network jacks!
Peeling paint and dead plants living on my house!

That would be a bad idea - because in the next year or so, that's not going to be the living room. It's going to be the dining room. I don't want a couple jacks marring the walls; I don't want anything marring the walls any more than it has to.

Instead, I write out what I want to do, like that map up there. Where do I want to install things? Why? How much will it cost? How big of holes will there be? Will we need holes, or can we use existing features (or damage)?

So awesome!
It takes a while, but eventually, I take images like the one above out of my head, safely tucked away until it's needed. Then, there is finally room for me to fill my head with all the awesome images and thoughts!

There is a lot of work I need to do. There are so many thoughts in my head, I'm not sure if I can handle all the work; I've set a brutal schedule, and I have to hold not only myself to it, but all the various contractors, document-signers, and red-tape-wielders as well. Some days, it's awfully hard to get that second image in my head... but then, some days, I look at my house and think how absolutely epic it's going to be. And how my muscles will, one day, not be super sore all the time.

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