Just in time for the holidays, our parody on the Twelve Days of Christmas. We dare you not to sing them out loud!

A journal for my hopes and dreams!


So you are planning to build a house. Where do you begin? How do you make it perfect?

Ideally, you should have an idea of where you will build. Your “perfect home” will vary from one location to another because of the orientation of the sun, privacy, lot size etc. Even if you do not have your building lot, you can define desired features for your home and then search for a plan or custom design that marries your wants and needs with the building lot you choose.

A journal is a great space to collect clippings, printouts, ideas and organize your thoughts in one place. Your planning journal could be a pretty little keepsake book or you may pull all punches and get a three-ring binder with pockets or an accordian file. It may even be a good idea to use a combination of these – the binder for the bulk of your ideas and a travel journal to jot notes on the go. You may even want to keep a dedicated flash drive to store pictures you take in your travels.

When planning, first paint with a broad brush. Read magazines, visit websites, attend homeshows, and collect pictures and articles of things you love. The joy of building is the ability to include custom touches at the beginning.

You may sort your ideas in the following categories:

  • What you love. (house styles, features, type of rooms, colours, finishes, the desired “feeling” of your home)
  • What you need. (minimum standards, number and size of rooms)
  • What you will need. (think through the next number of years and even beyond. Forthought and planning will ensure your home is flexible to span generations and aging)
  • What you do not like. (layouts that you do not like from personal experiences, house-hunting trips)

There are many sources of inspiration including publications, blogs, websites, and trade shows. Some of our favorite sources of inspiration include:

Magazines (at newsstands and online versions are current and trend-sensitive). Here are just a few:

Television Inspiration


  • Freshome
  • MLS listings – You will find many listings that now include virtual tours!
  • Houzz – An amazing site featuring easy-to-navigate categories.
  • Drummond House Plans “Blogroll” – a list of blogs to tantalize and inspire

Of course, the DrummondHousePlans website includes a great variety of house plans to choose from and includes a Photo Gallery of completed homes.

Stay tuned for all 12 days of building! Happy Holidays!