Well y’all it’s week 6 of the One Room Challenge and all over the web, lifestyle & design bloggers have completed 1 room in their homes!  It has been fun & a true challenge for many of us.  Pop over to Calling it Home & check out some of the amazing transformations.

We did not make the 6 weeks, but I hinted in week 4 that our’s might end up being an 8-10 week challenge.  There are several reasons but mainly my broken foot & patiently waiting for HOA approval for the patio extension – they have taken over 3 weeks for a fairly simple improvement.

Rather than talk about what we didn’t get done, I’d rather tell you all what we did get done.  And that’s a lot.  Have a look back at everything we’ve done to literally lay the groundwork for our backyard makeover.  But first, let’s have a look at what we started with:


If you want to see what we did or planned each week, here are the links to each week’s action.  Or continue below for a recap.

Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5

First, here’s the original plan for our backyard makeover from week 1

1. Remove the existing deck keeping as much wood as possible to use in other parts of the project

We did this already knowing that we wanted to replace it at some point

Some of the wood has already been used to build a planter box which now has a special place in the new garden & a this console/bar table, which I am quite proud of.Tearing out the deck

2. Update existing seating.

When we tore out the deck, we moved the benches to the patio for the time being.


Our old patio arrangement

3. Remove the existing baby oak tree

The poor trees appeared to be suffering from some sort of fungus or disease, so we planned to replace them & used much of the remnants as mulch or added to compost.


4. Create a garden with seating

Use companion planting with vegetables, herbs, & flowers – most have been planted & some have even started to grow!  Cucumbers, okra, collards, tomatoes, cilantro, & scallions have all started to sprout!

Add a fruit tree – we are still trying to decide between dwarf orange & lemon.  The the spot is marked.

Incorporate my existing compost bin – it’s there next to the garden bed but not “built-in” yet. 

I’ve already fallen asleep here twice.  DH even came close to dozing off once.

5. Add hardscape

Extend the existing patio – because of confusion over what’s built in & what’s not, we are still waiting for HOA approval.  Here’s another look at the original plans:


6. Add lots of extras – We knew that some of these would not get done on time, but they will.

  • Build a mobile enclosure for the grill – this is part of the work the contractor will complete with the patio extension.
  • Build a mobile bar table
  • Build a mobile enclosure for the fire pit
  • Make a portable outdoor projector screen

In week 5, we finished the projector screen, the tabletop for the bar table, & brick surround for the existing fire pit.

Since the patio isn’t done, we can’t really move anything back onto it unless we want to move it all 2 more times – off the existing patio so the crew can finish it & then back again after they are done.  I really don’t want to do that or ask DH to do that so… stay tuned for what happens next.  Until then…




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  1. Hey N’Ckyola, overall how do you feel about the outcome of your one room challenge? Revamping a backyard in 6 weeks is a tall order. I’m considering doing something similar, curious how you went about planning it and how you feel about the result!

    1. Hi Aaron, thanks for topping by! 3 months after the ORC, our backyard is finally almost done; I am planning to post an update this week or next about that. Honestly I believe that it could have been completed in 6 weeks were it not for the HOA approval process that took far longer than I could have ever imagined. Once approved, the actual patio extension should have taken a day – maybe 2. These are great questions that I will also address in my update … stay tuned! 😉