My name is Gina and I have been passionate about houses ever since I acquired my first property in 1973. (Please don't do the math!)
Since then, I have owned, built and renovated homes in Montreal (Quebec), London (Ontario), Mexico City, San Miguel de Allende and Dolores Hidalgo (Mexico), and in New Brunswick, where I now live.
I am also a permaculture designer. From 1995 until my return to Canada in 2003, I worked on permaculture-based sustainable community development projects in Central Mexico.
I mention this because permaculture is the driving force behind my desire to live as sustainably as possible, starting with my house.
I decided to share my affordable green home renovation adventures -- good, bad and in-between -- with everyone because I couldn't identify with any of the remodeling projects (green or otherwise) that I saw online.
I figured that there must be other homeowners out there who were facing the same frustrations and they might need some encouragement.
In my previous life I was also a chef and restaurant owner, so now I have a food blog, called The Cook's Corner Blog. Come and visit me there!
About This Website
When the time came to create this website, I looked everywhere for a system that didn't require me to take a course in website design, or pay someone thousands of dollars to do the work for me.
You see, even though I'd owned computers for decades, I did not know a single thing about HTML or Java, or CSS, or anything. In fact, those things scared me to death!
The only system that fit the bill was, and still is, SiteBuildIt!
Why? Because with SiteBuildIt!, for a very reasonable investment you get all the tools you need, no experience required, no need to add "plug-ins" or accessories -- it's all included.
All that, and the best support out there. Bar none!
And a forum to put all other forums to shame.
But don't take my word for it: look at these testimonials from other passionate "SBIers" who are realizing their dreams, and even making money -- lots of it in many cases. (My website is too young to be one of those but I have every reason to be optimistic – just take a look at the screen shot of my traffic statistics, below.)
Anyway, take a look at the testimonials, and if you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact me and I'll do my best to answer them and if I can't, I'll refer you to the right place.
Oh, and don't let that fancy new computer behind me put you off: over 90% of this site was built on a 12-inch laptop!
Happy site building to you!
If you want to know more about how this works, just drop me a note on my contact form.
MOVE THE STAIRS Moving a staircase? It's easy! Watch this step by step stair project how-to from top to bottom. (All puns intended!)
PILE ON THE INSULATION Looking for ways to save energy? Home insulation should be high on your list of priorities. Get the facts.
ANOTHER STAIR STORY We took out the stairs to the second floor, so now how do we get up there? A folding attic ladder supplies the answer.
TAP THE EARTH FOR WATER We prospect for water by ancient means and lo! water appears. See it happening, step-by-step.
DOWNSIZE YOUR LIFE Are you serious about reducing your impact on the environment? Start by downsizing your home! See how I did it -- and why.
LEARN ABOUT SOLAR ENERGY If you thought solar energy was only about solar panels, think again... and read this article by solar energy expert Michael Martinez.
...I clicked to your site and found a great wealth of information. I'm about the least tool oriented person there is around, but I'm passionate about many of the topics you write about. And I find the writing to be very well done and informative even for a non-handy person like me. Well done.
Dean Prague, Czech Republic
I would just like to thank you for maintaining this resource. It's essential that information about environmental issues are easily and broadly accessible.
Steve United States
Thank you so much for sharing your exquisitely well-told stories! I have spent the last 2 hours reading the whole saga, and I appreciate all of the detail that went into your decision making. I hope you are enjoying your green home with cozy surroundings and energy efficiency.
Candice Unites States
Thank you for taking the time to write down your experiences. It is truly a valuable service.
Rajiv United States
Thanks for all the info on this site, it is very thorough.
Marie United States
Very well documented and I appreciate the work and the effort you have put into this.
Hey! Just wanted to compliment you on your site! I'm a new, first time homeowner, with a dirt crawlspace and have searched for hours on how to set it up.
Living here in Montreal, and the conditions aren't easy on a house and this site sure helped to answer some questions.
Thank you for displaying your work and experience!
Have to say I absolutely love your site. Really complete, well thought out, and has me clicking from page to page...
A few years ago, I bought this fixer-upper for $10,000.
It had been vacant for six years, had no water supply, needed a new roof, and was likely to conceal an unsuspected number of nasty flaws.