Category Archive


Offbeat House Hunters: Our experience home shopping on a budget

Who here loves HGTV’s “House Hunters”? Let’s play the Offbeat Canadian Home version with three houses for $150,000 or under.” Which one will they choose!?

Renovating our colourful, lived-in, never-finished, Arts and Crafts bungalow

This home was the fresh start I was dreaming of. When I left my husband, I never thought in a little more than a year I would buy my own (little) home. I could paint whatever colours I wanted, decorate how I wanted and keep the house in whatever (child-safe) state I wanted. I purchased this home as a single-mom with a toddler — then at the housewarming party three months later, I married my boyfriend in the archway between the living and dining rooms.

Emma & Kevin: From day-of-fun elopement to life-of-fun with a chihuahua

Two months after the wedding, we went to Las Vegas for our honeymoon, and it was super fun! In the past year, we also took trips to Toronto and to Miami and the Bahamas. At home, we’ve been learning to cook together and we do country line dancing (Emma, mostly!). In addition to working, Emma has gone back to school part time, while Kevin is working freelance. Oh, and we got a chihuahua!

Shower curtains: Make your bathroom shine without paint

Cary asked: “My new husband, and I rent a heritage house in Vancouver BC. Unfortunately, the bathroom has been subjected to a cost-conscious (rather than a design-conscious) refurbishment. It functions perfectly well, but it brings us down to have to go into such a ugly place each morning. Surely there’s something we can do that goes beyond painting to make it a less utilitarian space.”

Yes! There is! My easy answer is: get an awesome shower curtain and invest in matching accessories. Here are a few of my favorite shower curtains full of personality.

Our cottage-style home in the middle of the Arctic tundra

Cambridge Bay is a fly-in only community north of the treeline and well within the Arctic circle. We’ve got a population of 1500 people, mostly Inuit. The community has two grocery stores, a hardware store, one bank, a post office, one restaurant, and a few government buildings. There are no bars, movie theatres, or shopping malls. It costs over $1000 one way to fly to the closest community. Despite that, there’s a lot that going on here. We make our own fun at home.

You are totally planning your first canoe trip right now

Once upon a time, in University, my friends and I sat around our living room, discussing all the things we’d rather be doing than studying for our finals. Somewhere between sky-diving and climbing Mount Everest, portaging came up as an option. Before we knew it, a trip was planned and packed, and we headed out into the Ontario wilderness less than one hour after our last exam. We were rained on, got lost and sidetracked down a disused, flooded snowmobile track, and ate mostly rice flavoured with soup mix in a tortilla with salsa. We came home tired, sore and dirty. And it was completely amazing. In honour of that first trip, here’s a guide on everything important you need to know/do to survive your first canoe trip into the wild.

Rustic and comfortable “found object”-styled Ontario home

My husband and I moved into our first home in October 2012, and we only bought FOUR things to decorate it. Almost all our furniture and housewares were either wedding presents, bought with wedding money or we already owned. We feel like our home has a “found object” look that some people strive for.

This teeny tiny home in Nanaimo makes me want to be more awesome

This little video about a tiny home made by Canada’s TwelveCubed Homes is so incredibly inspiring. Best quote? “The secret to living in such a small space is not to have too much junk.” Wise words, even for those of us living in larger spaces.