On Friday my husband James and I got the keys to our very first house. It's not a big house, but it's ours, and over the coming months (and probably years) we will be fixing it up to make it feel more and more like home. Here it is!
Semi-detached houses like this one are very common in Toronto, where we live. We own the left side, and the other side is owned by a lovely elderly Italian couple. Best of all, they speak Italian at home, and she doesn't even speak English! I think this is a really fantastic relic of times past.
We've been able to figure out that our house was built before (but probably not long before) 1921. It has three bedrooms on the top floor, a living room and kitchen on the ground floor, and an unfinished basement, with a finished bathroom. The last owners lived had lived in the house since 1979, and were also Italian, so it doesn't have some of the modern conveniences that you might expect, like a dryer or a dishwasher.
We'll be spending the next few weeks painting and DIYing to make our new house feel like ours, and then it will be time to move in! We have enough projects planned for the next few weeks to make your head spin including lots of painting, building a fence, and setting up a vegetable garden, and my favourite home-related websites like Offbeat Home and Young House Love just keep the ideas coming, so there will be lots more once these first few projects are finished!
Although most of my early blog posts will be home improvement-related, One Canadian Home is intended to be a do-it-yourself blog in the fullest possible sense. James and I are very interested in doing and making whatever we can in our home for a couple of reasons. Saving money is a big part of our motivation, but we're also interested in learning how to do a wide variety of different things, like our grandparents did. We also strive to be eco-friendly, and this is often easier to do if you buy ingredients instead of finished products. Shopping local and knowing what we're putting into our bodies and our environment are also important to us, and these goals are definitely consistent with doing it yourself. I've created One Canadian Home so that we can share our (mis)adventures and help inspire you to do things yourself too! There really isn't much better than the feeling of accomplishment that comes from tackling a difficult project and discovering that you can do it yourself!
I'll keep you posted on all the latest happenings, including tips that will make your life easier when it comes time to DIY it up in your own home. I hope that you will be inspired, learn a few things from our mistakes, and participate by sharing your comments, ideas and successes with us and with the One Canadian Home community.