One Week Home DIY Challenge.

one week home diy challenge redouxinteriors

One week, no husband, no kids.  Just me and the dog.

My kids are all going to various camps for the entire week next week.  Suffering Husband is going to my girl’s church camp to assist.  This leaves me.  ALONE FOR ONE WEEK!

Technically, it is 5.5 days, but who is counting?  What would you do if you had your house completely to yourself for 5 days?

What will I do???? I could lay on my white couch and be daring and eat Pizza.

Sectional in White 2

I could relax outside on my new outdoor couch and catch up on everyone else’s blogs.

outdoor couches with chippy bench slipcovered in drop cloth redouxinteriors

Or….I could do a one week Home DIY Challenge.  Goodness knows, I have enough projects around here to keep me busy for an entire summer of DIY.  But, I only have 5 consecutive, uninterrupted days.

Where should I start?  It won’t all get done.  Heck, I hope even one of the things gets done.  The thrill of starting a project in the morning and not having to stop until I fall over is, I must say, EXCITING!  I live a strange life, full of odd excitements…..

Here is my punch list One Week Home DIY Challenge Tour.  

Should I organize this mess in my office?  Yep. Hopefully will only take me a good hour (being hopeful here) or so.

Should I finally strip off the hard earned layers of dripped paint and the map of projects from days gone by.  Etched into the top of my kitchen table?   Should I trade paint splattered creativity for a more grown up kitchen table?  I can’t blame the mess on my kids anymore…

Maybe I need to think about spackling and painting the wall behind the table.  I used to have a home made (and it was so home made) built-in with this table.  You can see where the seats were and the color of my kitchen past.

Should focus my attention upstairs. There are bigger problems up there.  These might be better to tackle when I have LARGE amounts of time.  Like a month.  Where can I send my family for an entire month?

The Playroom. Um, yeah.  The color.  The walls are not getting painted this weekend, even though they are giving you a head ache. I know Bliss Ranch will be horrified I didn’t paint this room already!  I will however, attack that mess. SHAME, SHAME, SHAME!!!

Here is the other side of the room.  Could I possibly even get one chair completed and begin to make a dent in the chair pile?  Maybe my family can play Ping Pong again, at least in time for our annual Family Christmas Party!   If you are the sweet person, and you know who you are, who gave me 4 gorgeous French Chairs to reupholster, I haven’t forgotten!  I am just a slow starter when it comes to certain projects……

What about my Girl’s bathroom?  It was so awful that my son has moved out and has taken over a bathroom downstairs. Would you want to be a teenager trying out the latest hair styles in this room?  I will say what you are all thinking.  WHAT WAS I THINKING??  10 years ago, 2 old toddlers, and pressed for time, I was thinking this was one of my first big “creative” paint jobs.  Somewhere half way through, it went horribly wrong.  10 years have passed.  I can move on and paint over it now.  Something neutral, at least a new shower curtain!

Are you brave enough to see the rest of the bathroom?  FYI.  I was doing “faux” drift wood before it was a thing.  The drift has left my wood and now it is a broken towel hanger that needs to be tossed.  The wall??  That was my sorry attempt at a bright sunny ocean setting, complete with clouds. The clouds look like two dimensional cotton balls pulled apart.  10 years ago people.   Oh!  and one of the frames fell off a while ago and I have no idea what the picture was that was there.  It was some sort of beachy/summer picture of my kids.  Had a theme going here. I just noticed it was missing when I took the picture. It is probably longggg gone by now.  Curses.

The bathroom might be  too much. Besides, my girls seem to only be looking at themselves, not the walls. Maybe I should be thinking of moi!  I spend a goodly amount of time in my laundry room. Should I gussy it up ?  Come up with a better drying rack than a shower curtain stretched across the room.  Paint the cupboards?  Hang a new light?

Some people always say the bedroom is the most important room in the home to decorate.  Let’s start with my Master Bath.  We have had plans to rip up that builder grade carpet for 10 years.  Maybe I will finally do this.  How about giving those cabinets some attention too.

I am big on making sure my towels look tidy and hung correctly.  At least I was until the towel rack broke off TWO YEARS AGO.  I know PAHTHETIC.  This needs to be replaced. STAT.

I have sort of been holding off on this project.  Replacing a towel bar.  (Not sure that can be considered a project) because I want to repaint this room.   If I replace the towel bar,  I will have to repaint the room.  If I have to repaint the room, I will have to…replace the broken TP holder too!!  Yep, I have a matching set of broken towel and TP holders!

Are we there yet??  NO!!  There is more!

When we pulled up the carpet and painted our Stairs Black and White with CeCe Caldwell’s Paints, which I must say was my Opus Dei of Home DIY…..but the upstairs hall has remained au natural.  Two rag throw rugs have become the new flooring.  Any suggestions?

Where do I start?  Where do I begin????  I feel like I am at Hobby Lobby for the first time.  Overwhelmed, but excited.  So much to see, so many things to do!!

I would love to hear your opinions.  Which project comes first?  What would you do?  Scrap it all and enjoy the time relaxing?  DIY until you fall over exhausted, but blissful because you finally knocked out some long time projects?

Are your horrified?  Did I make you feel better?  Is your home worse?  I would love to hear about your home if you have more DIY than I do!

Follow along on Facebook and Instagram for the updates!!  I promise it will be productive (I hope).

Wish me luck in my One Week Home DIY Challenge.

PS By the end of the week, I will probably look less like this

And more like this!

Heading to the shower now…Which thankfully does not need to be redone!



  1. Kelly @ Eclectically Vintage

    Baby steps! Finish one space and you’ll feel amazing! Then lay down on that white couch with a pizza with the works!

  2. Darrielle Tennenbaum

    I think a combination of projects and laying on your white couch sounds good! Good luck!

  3. MaryAnne Looby

    HI, please don’t think I am rude…..but as a diy’er with your house in that condition…..what have you done? I know you are always in dumpsters and trash picking, but I have seen things you’ve done…do you sell them, or keep them for your own home? I think like someone else said, do one project, however I would not lay down on the sofa and eat pizza. You have the perfect opportunity, as you said, to work till you drop with no interuptions. So stockpile some quick, healthy food that you can grab every two or three hours, gather your necessary eguipment, and if you need some things to complete the projects, like paint and a new shower curtain, go now. Get the food, get the supplies, get home, don’t screw around make sure the answering machine is on, put a do not disturb sign on the front door, and get to work. You will feel better for it.

  4. Dorth

    I feel so much better now. Your home has a “lived in” look like mine. I would start in your office. It looks like a simple organization project. I’d always rather get one big things done than a lot of little things. It gives me impetus to get to the next project.

  5. Deborah Sell

    Wow 5.5 days alone ! I love my family but……well you know. I spend so much of my time beating myself up because I have all of these projects that I am half done with. I have been looking at my small half painted hutch in my breakfast room since Jesus was in knee paints ! Well it seems that long ago when I started it. In some weird way , it is comforting to know that I’m not the only one. I enjoyed your post of your beautiful stairs but the whole time was beating myself up, thinking….if she can do it ….I must just be terribly lazy. So thank you, I really needed that !

  6. Barbara Ann

    Remember you only have 5.5 days. It takes that many days to devise a plan. So that when everyone is home again your rested and have a game plan.
    So pick a sofa and get in the perfect thinking position and enjoy the peace. It’s only 5.5 days

  7. Diana

    Ok, after I finished laughing until I cried I came up with a plan, hopefully. First, start with an area you see all the time, like the kitchen table and then progress to the wall. After that you will perk up, I promise there will be light at the end of the tunnel. Since you are already painting you should run to the girl’s bath and paint whatever doesn’t move, then hang a beautiful shower curtain. Total transformation! Next, I would organize the office, only because it won’t take a day to do. At this point if you have any energy left I’d paint the laundry room your favorite color. Install any organizing items that would make your job easier. Having said all that order that pizza and hit the sofa after taking a long bath with bubbles. Make sure to let us know how this all works out!

  8. Nina

    Good luck! Focus on one project till completed. Even if it’s only one.

  9. elaine simmons

    I know how you feel. When my kids were young (I had 5 and the last two were twins), on occasion my mother-in-law offered to take the twins for several days with the other kids in school. I never knew whether to clean my house and sit there and admire some clean rooms or weather to go shopping or some other frivolous thing. The cleaning usually won out!

    • GTC

      Elaine, you were busy!! I have three kids, and twins! They are 12 now, but oh my, when they were young, I used to run around like a madwoman when they napped. I think the big projects are all coming to head now, since it has been 10 years in our home, and MANY things are need updates. I think I might need two weeks alone!

  10. Dixie Lee

    I love the kitchen table, I’d give the chairs a quick redo to match/tone and fix that wall (put up beadboard?) Fix the towel bars in your bath, ignore the paint issue. Then I’d tackle the kid’s bathroom. Frankly, I’d slap up as much white/off white paint in as many places as possible, then slowly make a plan and work on one thing at a time.

  11. patty soriano

    Karen, I do so love the way you show it like it is ! Personally, I’d start on the small jobs and work up to the bigger ones. BUT… if you can do the large jobs on your own, and it’s something that might take a few days, then go for it while you can. You won’t be able to do the big stuff when everyone else gets home and is underfoot again. When it’s time to rest and eat, by all means, sit on the white sofa and treat yourself to all the stainmakers! Pizza, cola, and something chocolate!!

  12. Wendy

    Oh, thank you, thank you, thank you! I think we all should “come out of the perfection closet”. I have been feeling like I am the only one with undone projects everywhere. I am starting to see now that it is a common thing. If I have a lot of projects, I tend to start with the more public areas, places company will readily see. My basement, well, company is not allowed. It is too horrifying. Not wet, dank, or dark, but piles and piles of crap so no one can walk, let alone vacuum. Make sure you save some time to reward yourself and relish your accomplishments!

    • GTC

      I think more of us need to come out of the closet and show the truth!! It makes everyone feel better. Thank you so much for your sweet comment!

  13. Christy@Confessions of a Serial Do-it-Yourselfer

    We are so alike! Five days of freedom!!! I would be just as excited to be able to tackle something without having to stop till I dropped!! I would tackle the girls’ bathroom while they are out of the way and surprise them with something fresh and new! It’s a small space so totally do-able in a couple of days and shopping for bathroom accessories is fun. Then I’d take a day to clean up the office, since no major work needs done there, but it will be something for you. Then see how you feel after that! Good luck and I hope you share what you decided to tackle when the week is up! 🙂

    • GTC

      You read my mind Christy! I spent the day prepping, then completing half of the girl’s bathroom. It really was so awful. I had to sand down all the edges of the very bad Venetian Plaster job I had done (in a hurry) in this room, then I had to paint 3 thick coats of primer to cover all that color!! Tomorrow I am hoping to finish the paint and shop for some new accessories. The rest of the week will be small stuff for sure!

  14. Nana GoGo

    I hope you don’t mind me saying but I think you’re getting yourself into a bit of an overwhelming pickle there! Perhaps if you put yourself on a ‘dumpster diet’ for a while and start and finished just one project at a time, you may get out of that diy hole sometime this side of the next millenium! Of course, a little help wouldn’t go amiss. Are there any friends/family you could draft in to help? For the next 5.5 days, I would start small and take it from there because you want to enjoy a little ‘me’ time too, while your family is away. Good Luck with everything.

  15. Christy

    Well all I can say is, what a refreshing post for me to read! Im tired of all the other blogs that show absolutely perfect homes that I would be afraid to walk in. Your blog never ceases to make me smile and Im always excited to see what you have to say. I too, am a dumpster diver, and I have an accumulation of stuff on my porch, waiting for me to transform. And as for things that need to be fixed or painted in my house, you bet there are plenty of those. Im just taking my time…it’s my house and my projects…and I will get things done. I guess I just wanted to tell you that you make things REAL for me, and I appreciate that. You will get things done, as I will. We are not lazy. Everything you have re-done in the past has been inspiration for me and I SO LOOK FORWARD to anything you write and share on your blog.

    • GTC

      Thank you so much Christy! I agree, when it is your own house, you can take your time and get things done in YOUR time. Right now, I will be happy if I finish one major project and a few of those minor things.

  16. Linda

    Thank you so much for the honesty in this post! For once we get to see some not-so-perfect areas in a blogger’s home.
    I think you need time on that white couch to come up with a good plan to tackle these projects one by one in due time. And squeeze in a few smaller projects this week. Your office, the kichten / table area maybe?
    I love reading your blog so keep up the good work … and enjoy your week alone.

  17. Joan B.

    I love reading your blog with all it’s honesty. I feel very few bloggers dare to show their “real” home. My advice is to start in a room where you spend the most time or the end result will be most visible and go from there. Have fun!

  18. Claudine

    Lol, Karen!!!!
    I once did a post like this, but my goal was to complete the projects in a YEAR!
    I’m happy to say I got A LOT dine last year.
    For a week, I would pick ONE project and rest a bit!!!!
    Keep us posted!!!

    • GTC

      Thanks Claudine!! It will probably take me a year to do all of this!

  19. Catherine

    Oh dolly-girl! How you make me laugh!
    One bite of the apple at a time is the answer!
    Better still -and probably more realistic- pick one room to work on FOR THE MONTH, and just keep plugging away till it’s done—thEN move on.
    How I wish I was there to throw down wit’ya!

    • GTC

      Catherine!!! I love your idea. I seriously need a month I think to do everything to my kid’s bathroom that needs fixing. I only realized how really far gone it was when I got in there and starting taking everything apart. I am thinking I need two weeks alone!

  20. Liz C.

    Funny, funny! Thanks for keeping it real. You made me feel so much better, except that I no longer have kids at home. I don’t really have an excuse for my *messes*. Above all, have fun with your week of freedom…

  21. Chris

    Holy wow….thanks for sharing the imperfection. I can certainly relate, reminds me of my chaos…it is so overwhelming with my projects it is hard to get started. So much easier to get out of the house & work on things than inside where there is soooo much. Take the first day to eat your pizza & make a game plan, then BAM, make it happen! Get out your timer & do 15-20 min dash cleaning in your office, playroom, laundry & other needed areas, then forget about it! I have found trying to do my spaces only end up back in a crazy mess, so tackle someone else’s, the bathroom would be fun. Maybe paint the kitchen wall & just set the chairs upright in playroom, at least they will be useful until made-over.
    Now I shall try to take my own advise & see what I can get done during the next week as well…GOOD LUCK TO US!

  22. JoAnn

    Start with repairing the kitchen wall. You use that room all the time and will see it your work everytime you go in there and feel you have accomplished something. Sand the tabletop and paint it. Give a top Coat heavy for durability. First coat on two chairs spend an hour in the office then second coat on chairs. Paint the green walls. In between coats finish chairs. Last free day. Pedicure and manicure. You have earned it!!

    • GTC

      Thanks JoAnn! I actually started with my kids bathroom because it required so much work before I could even paint. Tomorrow is kitchen and small jobs! Definitely a pedicure in my future.

  23. Becky

    O my gosh, a week to myself would be a lovely treat. I would need a list and a plan or I would be on this thing (the computer) all the day long!

  24. Deb

    I just recently had a week to myself with just as many projects to get done. I did thoroughly clean my “sun room” that is only 8 x 9, and it took me one and half days because it is so cramped with furniture. I was going to paint it, but only washed the walls for now. I also got some landscaping done in the backyard…putting in some flat red bricks, moving some plants and laying mulch down. It’s still not done, but almost…well just one of the garden areas anyway. I also made the mistake of starting to remove the wallpaper in the kitchen. I thought it was coming off great until I realized it was just the vinyl TOP layer, leaving the paper beneath. Oh well, I’m painting anyway, I’ll just paint over it. However, we are having a grad party in three weeks (!!) and that won’t get done before then. It was great having the time to work on things, but I wish I could have gotten so much more done. It’s so overwhelming when there is so much to do! Definitely try to complete at least one job, you will feel like you accomplished something. Good luck!!

    • GTC

      Thanks Deb!! Good luck with your grad party, and yes, just getting one major project completed is HUGE!

  25. Michelle

    Oh my gosh, I’m finally sitting down to catch up on my blog reading, and I just have to tell you how much your post resonates with me! Thank you thank you thank you for being real. I love great blogs, and I’m truly inspired by all the talented women out there whose homes are showplaces – but I so identify with you. I’m so busy working on furniture or other craft projects that our home gets put on the back burner. So many rooms need paint, curtains, and finishing touches that I feel almost overwhelmed. I love your blog and I love what you do with furniture! Keep up the great work!

    • GTC

      Thank you so much Michelle! I agree, the blogoshpere could use maybe a little more keeping it real and a little less perfection!


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