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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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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How to Maximize a Small Balcony Space

I was sitting on my screened-in porch the other day, watching Taffy the white doggy and CoCo the black kitty frolic around in the backyard. I glanced over at our brick patio, looking at my herb garden to see if anything needed any watering, and suddenly remembered when we lived in a tiny one-bedroom apartment and my herb garden was in a teeny little space on our fenced-in patio. It made me stop and smile – I loved that patio! Yes, it was super small, but it was ours, and as long as I managed the space well, it worked well for us!

So when Amelia from PatioLiving contacted me and asked if I was interested in a guest post, well, I sure was! And she has some fantastic ideas for all of us to make the most of the outdoor space we have! 

We all know outdoor space can be very scarce, especially when you’re renting or living in an urban environment. However, it doesn’t take a lot of room to make a big statement; it just requires a little creatively and thoughtful planning! Follow our helpful tips and tricks on revamping a small balcony, and you’ll be making the most out of your petite space in no time.  

PhotoViaNuevoEstilo Image Via NuevoEstilo

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A Patio Reveal!

So…I’ve been working on our back patio for a while now. And as I sit here working on this post, I’m suddenly disappointed, because I realize I don’t have a “before” photo. Geeze! Does anyone else do that other than me? Get so excited about a project that you dive headfirst into it without any documentation? I must get better at that…

But in the meantime, let’s just use our imaginations, shall we?

Let’s imagine a brick patio that was mostly black from never being cleaned. Where bricks were missing and cracked and uneven. And where ants roamed like they built the patio themselves. That’s what we found when we bought this house a little over a year ago.

But I had big plans for the space! And when we finally fenced in the yard, I knew I could do whatever I wanted to out there, so I got started. And here are the results…

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Allow me to take you on a tour!

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Patio Dreamin’

From time to time I like to dream with all of you, and these days, I’ve been dreaming about our back patio.

We had the back yard fenced in a few months ago, so we’re working on getting all the grass growing pretty and vanquishing those durn fire ants (who can ruin any backyard gathering pretty quickly, for sure!) I’m also in the midst of “prettying up” the screened-in back porch, and you’ll get to see that soon, but we also have a stone/paver patio that’s uncovered. THAT’S what I’ve been dreamin’ about…

I’ve had a lot of ideas for that patio.

I thought…ooo, fire pit and lots of seating!

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(But then there was a little incident with our grill and I realized that it was no fun to have lots of smoke in the house, and I worried about that with a fire pit being so close.)

Then I thought…hot tub! How nice it would be to come home from a long day and get in that hot tub! Continue reading