Re: Siding just the front...for now...bad idea?
If you're doing the work yourself, then there is nothing wrong with doing the front now and the rest later. Just leave plenty of house wrap at the outside corners to wrap around and complete the seal when the sides are done.
It also bears to mention that you should be concentrating your efforts on the exterior first, to create a completely water tight shell, before doing any renovations on the interior. Case in point, you're likely going to have interior wall damage caused by the pounding and flexing of the walls as the siding is replaced, hence, it would be pointless to repair or paint interior surfaces beforehand.
I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!