The Next Five: January 2013

My Five-Project Rule is probably the only reason life around the Liberty House is a contained kind of madness as opposed to, well, all-out chaos. The idea is that I can’t add another project to the list until one is checked off, but sometimes I go crazy and even check a bunch of stuff off the list without starting anything new.

The last list I posted included:

1.) Tackling the walls in my Office.  I’ve got a few touch ups to do, but the bulk of this work is done.


2.) Building a desk, also in the Office. 100% finished!


3.) Putting smaller casters on the workbench so I could actually see over the top of it. Also finished.


4.) Hanging curtains in the parlor. This is one of those projects that seemed really important a month ago, but as it turns out, it’s not where I want to spend my time or money right now… sometimes that’s the way it goes, so it’s being wait-listed while I work on other things.

5.) Creating this wall art for the Entry


I don’t put time-limits on these lists… the idea is the projects will always be revolving on to and off of it, but it took me about a month to check four things off of that one.

Here’s what’s on the new list…


Obviously those stairs are going to be the big thing I’m tackling over the next several weeks, but I’m going to stay true to my “Get your shit together” theme in January by continuing to come up with storage/organization solutions for the Office and the mudroom– which currently contains pink floors, green walls, all of my tools, and is an absolute disaster.


And on deck…


I’m really itching to start something big, but not until the great battle of the staircases is over and I’m a little more settled in the finished spaces in this house. What projects do you have coming up?

19 Responses

  1. Right now, painting. Which is becoming a major deal because I keep forgetting about the tools needed to do the prep process like sanding, taking screws off the walls (yes a flat screwdriver was necessary to remove the outlet plates but so was a square one for the screws on the walls)stopping a project and running to the store because you are not prepared is not fun. LOL

  2. Upper bath, phase 1- replacing the fan so it actually gets rid of the humidity (and water stops running down our walls- so gross!), repainting, restaining the trim (the finish was completely worn off on most of it), chipping out some tile and patching the drywall, making some cute shelves and hanging some awesome pictures. I started last night and got a good chunk of work done:

  3. Build a nifty inverted-scallop fence for the front yard and paint the outside of the house – maybe we can do another throwdown ;o)

    1. I’d be down for Dueling DIY on the fence builing, I have to do one myself to cover the ugly propane tank next to my barn, but I have to wait til the ground thaws for that project– early spring!

  4. You should be very proud of all the things you have checked off already!

    My DIY is on hold, for a good reason! Fingers crossed the sale of my house finishes up in the next three weeks! I have been FULL-ON packing and throwing away!

    But at his house we are getting ready to gut a bedroom, removing all plaster and lathe, re-insulate and drywall. You could say my plate is full!

    1. My DIY list went on hold for 6 months while I moved (twice) and was looking for a new house, so I totally feel you! (It came back with a vengeance after that though… lol.)

  5. Oooo I really like that Next 5 logic. I’m usually all over the place with what I want to do. Last night I was looking at tutorials for wainscoting in the dining room, and the day before that I was pricing out tile saws for taking on the bathroom renovation… how do you prioritize and decide which one to take on? Or do you have multiple projects always going?

    Also – LOVE that artwork. I can’t wait to see how you make that, because I may just need to follow your tutorial! 🙂

    1. Hey Chelsea, you can read more about my 5 Project Rule here if you want a little more behind the theory.

      I ALWAYS have multiple projects going on, it’s just in my nature, and it means my progress doesn’t halt completely if I get “stuck” on one of them. There’s no exact science about what I take on next though… whatever project grabs at me!

  6. I will also be demoing out an entire master bath in the near future. It’s a lot smaller then yours, but does include a wall removal.

    perhaps another duel will be in order.

    I’m taking it from two claustrophobic weird tiny rooms, to one normal human sized room!

  7. The more you mention your top 5 list, the more I’m thinking I should give it a try. I’m tired of having the 289 item project list that I can’t even look at because it’s overwhelming.

    January for me is focused on tying up loose ends. One of those is painting and reinstalling the doors on the dining room built ins. Another, not improvement related is to order wedding photos. It’s my goal to have an album by the time our 5th anniversary rolls around.

  8. We are about to completely rip out our half bath that is under our stairs all the way down to the studs. It is our first project so I’m a little nervous. I think it could easily win for the ugliest bathroom, ever. Seriously, Why would anyone put blue jean wallpaper up in such a small space? Okay why would anyone put blue jean wallpaper up? The trim was red bandana. The builder brought the wall in about three inches on each side of the sink so they could install a standard size counter. While the walls are ripped out we are also going to try to add pull out storage under the stairs, too. While you guys are dueling above the stairs I’ll be working under them.

  9. Finishing new carpet in the kids room. It’s been calling my name, all month but taking a few days off for the holidays has gotten me behind.

  10. Last fall, I finished sanding, poly, priming, and painting my stairs. It was annoying and tedious, but I can’t believe how many times I still congratulate myself as I walk up and down… I’m sure you’ll do a great job, too.
    We are starting a kitchen reno this spring, so I have a list of projects I want to get done before that madness starts:
    1. build shelving for office
    2. hang about 2 dozen photos that I framed before the holidays
    3. make labels for spice jars to sit on open shelving in upcoming kitchen reno. Thanks for this inspiration! Jars arrive from C&B this week.
    4. clean, clean, clean. Like I did prior to the holidays when house guests were coming.
    There–it’s in writing. Now I have to do it!

  11. Top five and next up all in one list of 10. I seem to have the same problem that you have Kit, because I had to stop typing at 10 even though there are other things to do…

    build stone fence in front
    weld together pipe fencing for around horse corral
    insulate the separate garage
    build a barn
    fix the toilet that runs water every five minutes
    Turn old console TV into a fishtank
    build murphy bed from the hardware kit I bought
    paint the LR and front room
    remodel the laundry room and include a workbench
    start on solar panel project

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