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Saturday and it is sweltering hot!

Plus 30+ and we won't even start talking about the humidity! Oh, Winnipeg, you delight so!

It's like my dad said today, people pay thousands to feel this weather in January - and here we are getting this weather for free.

Sleeping in never felt so good as it did this morning. Ah. Relief. But that did't last too long and off we headed to the Brady dump. Let me tell you that i have watched a lot of Home Renovations Shows on HGTV. I have watched Property Brothers and many others and never do you see behind the scenes. We don't see the trailers heading off to the dump to drop off some of the remains from the demolition. Facts are: DIY's have to take care of their own garbage. So for $11 dad, Bernie and myself headed into the dump. This was my 2nd trip to Brady and lo and behold it was my dad's first. It was funny to listen to him - it was like a little kid. He was so excited to drive up to the top and see inside the center of the dump. But i can totally relate. The first time i went I was thoroughly disappointed because we couldn't go up the hill, we just had to dump at the bottom. So this time we got to go to the top. If you have never been to the dump - you gotta go. It's like an exciting date... weird and stinky... but kinda fun!

We got to the top, but unfortunately, we were told to go to the side to dump our wood and drywall and so we never got to see into the hole. I am convinced there is a city down there! Someday we will get to see this hidden city.

After all of that excitement, we could hardly find the energy to continue to the house. But we managed to get ourselves there. Dad and I quickly left to go to Windsor plywood to see how much some pine tongue and groove cost. And we looked to find trim for my DIY door project.

So here's the thing. We are on a budget - a fairly tight budget. What we have been hunting for, since day 1, of our house hunt is a house that fits our family. We spend a lot of time in the kitchen and in the dining room and living room. We wanted a space that would fit us and be a place where we can all gather and hopefully create good memories. The rest of the house, to be honest, didn't really matter. SO with that in mind and a budget to adhere to, we decided that the bulk of our budget would go into the kitchen followed closely by flooring and then the rest of the main floor.

Part of this blog is to show you ways that we are trying to keep close to our budget and how, perhaps, you can also make small changes in your home to make it feel new and fresh. We are fortunate and have a dad that likes to tinker and has done lots of renovations in his time. I am fortunate to have a husband who is willing to work and willing to listen and trust some of his wife's hairbrain ideas. We are fortunate to have kids old enough to help. We have done many renovations with little kids too - so this is quite a treat!

Paint does have a price tag - but it is one of the easiest ways to freshen up a room. And if you are willing to tackle painting yourself - it doesn't have to cost a fortune. My daughter, Rayzanna, has spent the last two summers painting at Canadian Mennonite University in Winnipeg - so she is semi-professional! Her and I enjoy doing the cutting/trimi work. We take a nice angled brush - i prefer about a 1.5" brush - and we cut in around the ceiling and all the trims and outlets. Then someone with a roller does the rolling. (Or we do it ourselves if we are working alone.) You can't really go wrong. A steady hand is helpful along the trim. The rolling trick in my mind is to not put too little paint on the roller and not to over roll. Each roller full should do about a 3x4 foot piece (a rough guess). We had a newbee do the first coat in Jozee's room and it was perfectly fine. He learned a lot that day! Thanks Nick!

We are trying hard to be good stewards of what we have - which doesn't always seem like a whole lot - and sometimes it is really hard. It is hard not to want the best, the top notch, the cream of the crop. It was hard to say no to quartz and yes to laminate countertops. It felt hard to give up my dream of an apron sink. I can't buy the lighting I admire. My floors won't be hardwood. I won't be buying new windows and new trim. No new fridge or dishwasher. But we are still going to have a beautiful space and we will improvise, we will DIY, we will be creative. You know, it's actually kind of exciting to try and create this cool, homey space on a budget.

Which leads me to my oven!! When we talked kitchen, one of the things i wanted was a new oven. Oven and cabinets. I really wanted to try a dual fuel range - the top is gas and the oven is electric. So we headed to one of the Winnipeg appliance stores and found one that would cost around $3000. Well, we thought we would bite the bullet but we would wait till the end of June. As we headed home that evening, I was feeling kind of ill about that cost. So I did what lots of good Canadians do, I went KIJIJI'iNG. If you haven't Kijiji'd - you gotta try. will bring you to a site where you can find your city and start looking for almost anything. So I went looking for an oven/range and I found one! Yup - 5 years old, had been owned by an older lady moving into personal care. She was a snow-bird in winter and only used the oven at home in summer. So we drove to Winnipeg, took a look, loaded it and brought it home to store. (we are praying that it actually works - will keep you posted) It looks fantastic and is exactly what i wanted to try. SO just because you have a dream that you think is out of your range... just look in unexpected places - you might just find it.

(I don't even need to say that this analogy can be applied to your life dreams, right?)

Below is my video blog for the day... remember, it was over 30' and with the humidex if felt like closer to 40'. My hair has a curl that goes into frizz under those conditions... I am exhausted and hot and tired and repeating myself. So excuse the 'look' - this is a real life DIY'er. This is 'real' TV!!

At the end of this day awaited a treat. We were invited for pizza & beer at my cousin's house. A few of my other cousins were also there. They had been packing at my aunt's house that afternoon.

Bernie and I showered (in our new house with a small drop of shampoo that Rayzanna happened to have in her backpack and with a small towel I had thrown in my bag just in case we got 'that sweaty!') We both had some cleaner clothes along - thank goodness. We had a wonderful visit - and a ton of laughs. It was a blessing to see my cousin's wife out from her therapy sessions at Riverview- she is recovering from a stroke and is doing fantastic. It was great to see my cousins/friends. You know - you can do almost anything and push yourselves to almost any extent if you know you have people in your court encouraging you and pushing you and helping you. It goes for my cousins wife, Judy, it goes for us and it goes for you. Make good friends. Make friends who will be there for you. Make friends who will warm up cold pizza and pull out a cold beer and make you feel right at home!!

See you tomorrow.

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