"I stumbled across your blog and was wondering about your experience building the canoe. Did you ever figure out how much you spent? I can't decide if I want to buy the kit from clc or do it all from scratch. Also honestly as your first boat how easy was it?"
Let's see .. about $45 on the wood, about $140 on epoxy, resin, and pump handles, and $60 on fiberglass cloth? Probably another $50 here and there. So that's about $300. I did not have to buy any tools (I borrowed a few), so that saved some money.
As a first boat, it was neither too hard nor too easy. My only previous woodworking experience was rough carpentry, like house framing, and some simple homemade furniture.
I learned about working with a plane, cutting bevels on the strips. I also learned about laying down epoxy and fiberglass cloth. The article in WoodenBoat was well written and photographed; easy to follow.