On the Road in 2016

Y’all know I normally do a “Top 5 Posts” post at the beginning of each month, looking back at the previous month to see what was most popular around here! Well, I figured I’d stop and see what the top 5 posts were for all of 2016! Are you ready?!

February

1. The Top 10 Creative Ways to Use Concrete in Your House – This was a fantastic post on a variety of creative ways concrete can be used in home decor! 

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DIY Projects and Chores Kids Can Do Themselves

We’re wrapping up summer and getting ready to head back to school around here – how about you? There’s a few more days for free time and fun, and then we’ll get down to business and keep most of the “play” to the weekends. Even though kids will get busier when school begins again, they still need to stay active around the house with things like chores and special projects. After all, they need to know that they bring something to the table and are a contributing member of the household as well, right?

So when retired DIY expert David Glenn contacted me with the idea for this post on projects and chores that the kiddos can do on their own, well, I thought it was fantastic! See how it speaks to YOUR kids!

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Young children are often eager to help their parents with various projects and chores, but many parents are hesitant out of fear of their children getting in the way. However, children as young as three years old can do basic chores and projects, learning responsibility and independence at a young age.

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Embracing Outdoor Living

My hubby and I both enjoy the outdoors when it comes to general activities. Probably comes from each of us growing up out in the country with lots of room to roam! But here recently, we’ve curbed the outdoor fun (or at least had to modify it a little bit) due to several scares we’ve had with skin cancers.

Growing up, sunscreen wasn’t always a priority for him. He’s had sun poisoning and some very bad burns several times, which now translates to him being his dermatologist’s youngest ever skin cancer patient! He’s now had to go under the knife 3 times in our marriage to get rid of these nasties, and it’s changed the way we think about being out in the Florida sun, for sure! We’re always looking for shade, or wearing hats, or lathering up with sunscreen!

But one thing we still really enjoy is our backyard. From the veggie garden to the pineapple bed, to the experiments with various flowers I have going on throughout the yard, in the evenings, once the sun has fallen behind the trees, we spend a good deal of time out on our patio, along with CoCo the Black Kitty and Taffy the White Doggy.  And, if we choose to go out BEFORE the sun goes down, we just stay in the shade on our patio.

I think that homeowners often like to take just as much pride in their outdoors as they do their indoors, especially in a state like Florida that enjoys some fabulous summer weather. It’s a property’s garden that provides the perfect utopia to relax, where people can enjoy the sun and fresh air while enjoying some privacy. Many property hunters are attracted to homes that boast a stylish outdoor area, and a well looked after yard sets a huge impression for the whole property. That’s why it’s wise to invest in outdoor spaces, and one the best ways to transform a garden’s livable area is to have a patio installed.

Those who want to maximize their outdoor living space might consider purchasing a dome patio in Perth. Patios provide an excellent place to enjoy time with the family, and the shade and practicality they offer make them a great addition to any garden. Patios manufactured by reputable companies are custom-made so that they’re unique to each individual garden, and they’re durability means they’ll provide a place to relax for a lifetime.

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Spend More Time Outdoors

When the sky is a clear blue and the sun punctuates the beauty of a backyard, there’s nothing better than escaping outside to de-stress in the natural warmth supplied by nature. With styles and designs to suit all requirements, patios promise to bolster any garden’s image.

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How to Build a DIY Backyard Pizza Oven!

Happy Friday, everyone! Just wanted to pop by and share something fun with all of you. Who knows, maybe this pizza oven could be your weekend DIY!

Matt with Northshore Fireplace recently contacted me regarding an infographic on how to build a DIY backyard pizza oven! Since outdoor cooking season is in full swing, and many people use this time of year to entertain and throw outdoor dinner parties, I thought it was a great idea! Building a backyard pizza oven may seem like a daunting task, but is more achievable and even more affordable than you might think.

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This resource can be used as a step by step guide to creating your own pizza oven that doesn’t require any specialized construction skills. By using brick, sand, and some cement you can build a beautiful, durable backyard pizza oven that only costs a few hundred bucks. The nice thing about these wood fire ovens is that they can be used for more than just cooking pizza! Check out how!

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Patio Dreamin’…with Arhaus!

One of the draws for us when we bought our home was the screened-in back porch. We knew CoCo the Black Kitty would especially love it, and, as someone who loves to have the windows open and fresh air flowing through as much as possible, I was pretty excited about it, too. But we got a bonus! In addition to the screened-in back porch, we also got a beautiful brick patio! Here’s what we did with it soon after we moved in:

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Nothing fancy! Just some potted plants, a couple chairs and an umbrella.

Here’s what it looks like today:

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A few little things have changed. The house has been painted. You can see that the plumerias (which bloom a beautiful shade of pink!) got too big for their pots, so I created a large bed to plant them in. Look how much they’ve grown! My other pots are filled with “experiments”, aloe (you can never have too much aloe, especially when you cook like I do!) and herbs. Also good to have lots of fresh herbs around my house!

I freshen the chairs with new cushions each season, and yes, we still have an umbrella. It’s the same deep red color, except it’s solid on both sides. We learned, after leaving the first umbrella out all the time, that umbrellas are no match for the strong storms we get over the summer here in Florida. After two bent-in-half umbrella catastrophes, we now keep it in the garage until we’re ready to use it!

The other thing you’ll notice is the small white table on the right. That is actually a fish-cleaning table right from The Bass Pro Shop, but my sweet in-laws bought it for me to use as a potting station – and it works beautifully! It’s normally located around the corner, but my hubby moved it closer to the back door so my preggo self wouldn’t have to walk so far. Hook it up to the hose and it’s got a functioning sink and everything! Love it!

It’s a tad bit more disjointed than I’d like it to be, but it’s pretty comfy, and it works for us!

However, I noticed something the other day.

I heard a strange noise outside, and, since I knew Taffy the White Doggy was in the yard, I stepped out to see what she was doing. I immediately observed her dragging one of the chairs across the patio.

I knew she was making a valiant attempt to catch a lizard, but I scolded her and sent her inside all the same. When I walked over to the chair, I noticed that BOTH of them actually showed signs of being dragged across the bricks, and even looked a bit wobbly, as if they had been pounced on one too many times. Hmmm. Maybe it’s time for some new furniture out there.

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