My elmer was an inveterate QRPer. He didn't understand why anyone would want a rig that put out more than 5W CW or 10W SSB. The net result is that I started in this hobby as a QRPer just as you are thinking of doing. Don't let the naysayers talk you out of it. I learned good operating skills VERY quickly because of my "limited" power.
Oh, my first rig was a Kenwood TS-660, 10W max on 6, 10, 12, and 15 meters, at the BOTTOM of the sunspot cycle. Plenty of Es openings and midday weekend F-layer 15 meter openings kept me making contacts on the bands people claim you should steer away from when the cycle is in decline. FWIW, I have a TS-660 again
The Yaesu FT-817 is a PERFECT rig to start with because it is so incredibly flexible. Portable, base, mobile... it will let you figure out what's for you because it does it all. If 5W isn't enough you can always add an amp (i.e.: a Tokyo Hy-Power HL-100BDX or HL-50B) later to give it a boost. The FT-817 will let you explore various facets of the hobby with ease.
Finally, the "man of the house" isn't a ham. I eventually did talk him into a small tower, fanned dipoles for HF, and small beams for 6m, 2m, and 70cm. Find a way to convince him it's worthwhile and doesn't have to be an eyesore. Those who have stressed the importance of a good antenna couldn't have it more right.
Oh, and for portable ops, consider throwing a dipole in the trees. It's the cheapest and often best solution. I do that and tune with a Mizuho KX-QRP manual antenna tuner. I prefer a small manual tuner because it doesn't consume any power.
Good luck, and welcome to ham radio!