Tag Archives: outside

Happy Spring!

Standard
Happy Spring!

Hello everyone! I know I’m a little late to the party but Happy Spring! After what felt like an eternity of winter, I am so happy that spring is finally here. It feels so good to get into my car every day for work and not freeze my nads off and for that, I am thankful lol. I have already been enjoying the high sixties weather with trips to the park with my niece, coloring with chalk on the driveway with her, and helping my dad in the yard.

I know that spring is officially here when all of my dad’s flowers begin popping up:

image_50787841image_50756609image_50732545image_50787585image_67236097image_50352641

Throughout the pandemic, Johnny and I have stayed hunkered down to do our part in keeping ourselves and loved ones safe. Come springtime, it feels so good to be outdoors after spending so much time inside. Not to mention all of the delightful fashion options that comes with nice weather. Goodbye bulky winter coats and hello sweet sweaters, skirts, and dresses!

This spring, I am looking forward to outdoor drinks and dining with Johnny and our friends, pretty flowers, and running around the yard with my niece. Nothing is better than feeling sunshine on your face to kiss that seasonal depression goodbye until next winter lol. Despite never getting back the hour of sleep that we lost, which is the only downside of spring, I am so ready for bright, beautiful days ahead and I hope the same goes for all of you. ❤

Happy Spring!!

What are you most looking forward to this spring? What is your favorite outdoor activity? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Oh Deer!

Standard
Oh Deer!

Hi! During our family holiday weekend at Oglebay, we jam packed a ton of activities into a short period of time. The property was beautiful with fun events happening everywhere you looked as well as what seemed like a never ending amount of deer roaming about. One particular family of deer seemed to take a liking to hanging around our lodge and were so tame that we were able to feed them peanuts right out of the palm of our hands. It. Was. Awesome! Check it out:

image_50439169image_50426369image_6487327(1)image_6487327(3)image_6487327(2)image_50403841(1)

When my deer friends first started congregating in the front of our lodge, I thought it was lucky to be able to see them so closely. Never in my wildest dreams did I think that they would come right up to my sister and I for a snack but I have photographic proof of that! At first, we just threw some peanuts in their general direction to see what happened. They must have really liked them because, shortly after, they just started coming directly to the source for more. 😀

Throughout our stay, we must have seen close to fifty deer and many of them were enjoying treats from other families too. I would have been completely satisfied just feeding the deer our entire weekend stay and was so sad when my friends eventually had their fill and headed back into the woods. However, something tells me that they will have no problem finding another family to score some snacks with upon our return home!

What an amazing experience this was because hand feeding the deer in my neck of the woods would never happen. This was one of the many highlights of my holiday weekend at Oglebay! ❤

What kind of wildlife resides in your area? What is your favorite animal? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

What To Consider When Installing A Water Fountain In Your Yard

Standard
What To Consider When Installing A Water Fountain In Your Yard

When looking for ways to make the front yard more beautiful, many people might consider adding a water fountain. Usually made of stone or metal, these fountains are available in different shapes and sizes. Not only will they add something nice to look at to your yard, but they have several benefits that will help you in the long run.

Although the costs of installing a fountain can be steep upfront, it is generally affordable afterwards. The only costs will be in the initial fountain purchase and in water expenses over time to maintain it, which in most cases, is extremely minimal.

Of course, there are considerations to take into account before spending your hard-earned money. For one, you’ll want to make sure there is an electrical outlet nearby or that you can put one in. You also want to make sure the area surrounding the fountain is level and free of any rocks, plants, or hard materials. Here are some things that you should consider when purchasing a fountain for your front yard:

What are the benefits of having a water fountain?

One of the benefits of a fountain is that it can help keep mosquitoes and other pests away. Mosquitoes breed in moist areas, such as ponds or streams. If you fill your water fountain with mosquito-repelling plants, then you’ll help reduce the number of mosquitoes around your yard without having to use any harmful chemicals.

Another benefit to a water fountain is that it will contribute to the beauty of your front yard. Adding a water fountain to your yard can be as simple as finding one that fits in with the natural landscape and features of your yard. But you could also go all out and have a custom-made fountain designed for your yard specifically.

Where should you put the water fountain?

Now that you know why a water fountain might be a good idea for your front yard, you should consider where to put it. You want to make sure that it’s properly situated against your home or another object to avoid having the water spray right onto the side of your house or into someone’s yard. You also want a spot with good visibility so everyone can enjoy it.

How much does it cost to install a water fountain?

Depending on the size and style of the fountain, you might pay anywhere from $100 to $5,000 for it. Keep in mind that if you want something custom made or made of rare materials, then you’ll probably end up paying more than you would if you went with something more generic.

You’ll also have to pay for labor unless you’re installing it yourself. Aside from the people you’ll be paying to install the fountain, you might want to hire paving contractors to install pavers around the area. This way, your fountain won’t scratch up the lawn, and you’ll also be able to add a nice touch by having lights added underneath.

How long will it take to install a water fountain?

The installation time for a water fountain can vary depending on what kind you get and whether you have it installed professionally or by yourself. If you have hired professionals, they’ll usually be able to install your fountain in one day. However, if you’re installing it yourself, it will probably take several days to complete the installation process.

There are many benefits to adding a water fountain in your front yard. Not only do they look beautiful and keep pests away, but they also make soothing sounds to replace the noise of cars and kids playing. What a wonderful way to relax!

Preparing Your Backyard For Parties

Standard
Preparing Your Backyard For Parties

After being tucked away from the cold this winter, it’s only natural to be daydreaming about warm weather, outdoor activities, and parties hosted from your own backyard. Not only are outdoor get togethers a lot of fun but they are much safer from a COVID perspective too. If you have hosting an outdoor gathering on the mind, think about the following as you make your preparations:

Set The Space:

If you don’t already have a patio in the backyard for lawn furniture, this could be a great project to undertake. Stone or terracotta tiles set in a pleasing arrangement can provide the perfect space to set up an outdoor dining arrangement for your cookouts. If you’re not keen on doing this yourself, there are sure to be lots of local professionals who can make this happen. Getting the driveway interlocking services will greatly elevate the curb appeal. It’s a win/win situation!

Outdoor Activities:

Enjoying the great outdoors with your friends is a good way to get active so take advantage of it! Badminton, volleyball, cornhole, croquet, and bocce ball are all sure to be a hit. Hosting tournaments for some friendly competition will definitely get you moving! If you and your guests have green thumbs, you could have a literal garden party and plant flowers or veggies together. Don’t forget the lemonade and finger food to snack on.

Add A Fire Pit:

Your new patio will also be a nice space to set up a fire pit for an evening get together. Roasting marshmallows and hot dogs while the sun sets is always fun and will provide a touch of warmth during those chilly summer nights. A fire pit can also serve you well in the wintertime too to sip hot chocolate and munch gingerbread cookies around.

Keep Pests At Bay:

There is nothing worse than getting bit up by mosquitos during an outdoor gathering so a supply of citronella candles will go a long way. You also might want to consider calling in local experts if you have a lot of burrow holes on your lawn. You don’t want anyone tripping and spraining an ankle during your volleyball tournament!

Spring and summer activities are not as far off as we might think! Put your daydreaming of fun in the sun to good use by preparing your backyard soon.

Improve Your Front Yard With These Tips

Standard
Improve Your Front Yard With These Tips

If there is one problem with most interior design projects, it’s that people forget to move to the outside of their home. Designing your home should be fun but you need to include the outside of the house for it to be worth it! You don’t want people coming up to the front door of the house and feeling put off by your front yard before they have a chance to get inside. All that does is give them incorrect ideas of your home and what it should be – and that’s not going to do!

Repairing and refreshing the fencing and the pathway leading up to the front yard is just the start of your front yard makeover options. You need people to look at your house and think that your home looks smart. People can and do pre-judge before they walk into a new place. Let them be impressed by your beautiful front yard – use the tips below to get started:

Start with landscaping:

Greenery is one of the best things that you can add to your front yard to make it look enticing. You don’t have to have an entirely new lawn, but you could add some greenery in the form of bushes, planters, and flower borders. This will add a splash of color to an otherwise gray area, and while it’s time consuming, it will make a huge difference.

Consider the lighting:

Are you able to upgrade your fixtures outside the house? If so, you should start with your lighting. You don’t need to have one dreary light by the front door when you can choose between security lights that improve the security of your home, and warmer lights that offer your front yard a splash of ambience in the evenings.

Add some rockery:

If grass and plant management isn’t really your thing, why not use large rocks? A rockery with a small fountain or a pond can really add some ambience to your front yard, and it’s a low maintenance decorative item, too, so you’ll get what you need in an instant.

Redo the driveway:

If most of your front yard is made up by the driveway, then it’s time for an upgrade. New stones in a new color are going to brighten up the front of your home in an instant, and you’ll just need a pressure washer for regular maintenance. Don’t forget to head out and sweep the leaves and debris so your front yard continues to look great!

Repaint the fencing:

If you have fencing around the front yard already, why not make it more colorful with weather-wearing paint? You can either go with one pastel block color or you can have your own white picket fence. Alternatively, you can go with a rainbow color theme, and that in itself is going to help you to improve the look of your front yard and it doesn’t take long to do it.

Boost your curb appeal with the tips above to make your house the best on the block!

Featured Image By: Pexels

3 Ideas To Get Your Kids Interested In Nature

Standard
3 Ideas To Get Your Kids Interested In Nature

By now, you have no doubt heard of the great mental health benefits of getting outside. But, while you might love the outdoors, your kids may still be on the fence. After all, it’s always more comfortable to sit inside, especially when the temperatures plummet. This won’t do them any favors, though, so it is important to try and get them more interested in nature. If you’re not sure where to begin, here are three ideas to help:

Show Them How Fun It Can Be:

Many kids will associate being outdoors with walking and walking far. There’s some truth to this, but it’s not the walk that makes nature fun, it’s seeing everything along the way. However, when they’re young, kids may not notice or care about this. All they see is a lot of green and brown.

You can change this attitude by considering the different ways to make nature walks enjoyable for kids, such as scavenger hunts, identifying different plants, animals, or bugs, or playing I Spy along the way. If possible, look for a trail that has a play area at the end, as this will give them something to look forward to, as long as they aren’t too tired by the time you arrive.

Bring Nature Indoors:

If your kids don’t appreciate nature as much as you’d like them to, how about bringing nature indoors? This is especially useful if you live somewhere cold and wet, making it difficult to get outside too often.

The benefits of houseplants can make them more appreciative of nature, and as you add more to your collection, they might become even more interested. You might get to the point where they want to help water them, care for them, and give them enough sunlight so they can thrive. It can be tricky to see plants grow outside, but having them inside allows your kids to see the entire lifespan.

Encourage Their Education:

While there might not be much in the school curriculum, you can still speak with their teacher and ask what they are doing to encourage a love of the outdoors in their students.

Depending on what they say, there is a range of resources they can use, including succulent classroom decor by Miss Jacobs that could be a small but inspiring module for your kids and their classmates. As it covers science, it can easily apply to a lesson, even if it’s something done to make up some time once all other lessons are finished.

As much as some people do not enjoy being outside, it’s fair to say that the majority of people can always find something to love about it. Whether it’s the positivity they feel after a long hike or the stunning views that they wouldn’t get from sitting on the sofa, your kids could experience the same shift, and soon, you won’t be able to keep them indoors at all

Featured Image By: Unsplash

Safety Tips For Exercising Outdoors   

Standard
Safety Tips For Exercising Outdoors   

Whether it’s a gentle breeze caressing your face while you run or the sun kissing your skin while you cycle, taking your workouts outdoors is always a refreshing experience. However, it is necessary to exercise without putting your health and safety at risk. Are you thinking about taking your fitness regimen outside? Here are a few tips that can help you stay safe while you exercise:

Map your route ahead of time:

It would be pretty frustrating losing your way when going for a run, walk, or cycle outside, especially if you’re new to the area. Thankfully, almost all smartphones come with a Map application and GPS functions, so you can plan your route before setting off. It is also advisable to share your route with someone you trust before you leave. If you take your phone along, be sure to keep your location on to make locating you easier if you should get lost or injured. If you already know your area, ensure that you avoid inconvenient places like construction sites, busy streets, etc. You might also want to avoid areas with stray animals to prevent incidents such as dog bites.

Dress for safety:

From workout clothes to the shoes you wear, you should aim for comfort and safety. Regarding footwear, having on the right shoes for the right activity will help to avoid blisters, twisted ankles, or any other injury. Also, your clothes should not inhibit blood flow or airflow in any way. If you plan on doing your outdoor workout at night or under poor visibility, you should wear workout clothes with features that make you more visible, especially when working out near busy roads. For example, you can wear bright colored clothes or opt for ones with reflectors to make you more visible to motorists.

Take your cell phone along:

Carrying a phone along when going for a run can be an inconvenience as you want to run or cycle ‘freely,’ but you also need to be safe. And if you get lost in an area without any internet connection, you will need something to use to call for help. Many workout garments come with spaces to store cell phones and keep them out of the way until you need them.

Protect yourself from the sun:

Sunscreen is an absolute must if you plan to work out in the sun, especially for your face. It is best to look for sunscreen products designed specifically for athletes, as they wouldn’t come off when you sweat. Moreover, the heat can wear you out pretty fast, so don’t forget to carry a bottle of water along. If possible, try to exercise during or after sunset because the sun can be scorching in the afternoon.

Protect yourself from the cold:

Cold temperatures can also drain your energy. It is possible to burn about 6,000 calories in one day when exercising in the cold. So, make sure you wear protective clothing. You might also want to take a bottle of water along to sip, as cold temperatures can suppress thirst, and you don’t want to be dehydrated.

Working out outdoors is great but doing it safely is the best with the tips above!

Featured Image By: Pexels

Garden Tours

Standard
Garden Tours

Hi! My dad is, hands down, the best gardener in the world and has a million green thumbs. Whenever I’m over at my parents, I always enjoy our “Garden Tours”. My dad and I will walk through the backyard together and check on the progress of his flowers and veggies. There is something new to see every time and it never gets old! Take a look at some pics from our backyard stroll and keep in mind that it was all done by a man who recently broke his dominant arm. Like I said, my dad is the best gardener in the world. ❤

My dad’s garden is home to many creatures both real and fake. There are bunnies, butterflies, bees, and bats as well as all of the decorative birds, lizards, frogs, and gnomes! My niece loves to play outside and my dad is always on the hunt for new lawn decorations to surprise her with as she is partial to the fake flamingo he has. It is also so much fun to look for bunnies and butterflies with her. 🙂

A few weeks ago, we had a family visit to the Kingwood Center Gardens in Mansfield. The botanical gardens were splendid, but I don’t think they have anything on my dad’s backyard and I live for our Garden Tours. What a guy!

What are you growing in your garden? What is your favorite flower? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Perfect Your Home Exterior With These 5 Tips

Standard
Perfect Your Home Exterior With These 5 Tips

As a proud homeowner, you’re going to want your home to not only look the best it possibly can but function the best, too. Whether you’re working on your home on a budget or have lots to spend, you’re going to be someone who takes real pride in their abode.

One of the most significant aspects of a home is the entryway and how you feel when walking up to the property for the first time. While it may not seem like a big deal initially, it’s actually something that your brain works on unconsciously. Have you ever been to a new friend or acquaintance’s house and felt a little nervous? You become a lot less so when you see a wonderful exterior and a welcoming entryway, don’t you?

If you’re hoping to possess a wonderful outside, then the work will have to be put in. Here are five aspects that you should definitely do a little work on:

The Driveway:

The first thing you encounter when you enter a home is the driveway. Plenty of people leave this alone for years and it really shows. It looks as though it’s about fifty years old! A simple blast with a pressure washer can take decades off of its looks. Think about adding a few borders and maybe some lights for a pleasant aesthetic.

If you have a flag as part of your decor near the driveway, make sure that you have the proper flagpole hardware to keep it flying high. You will want it to be secure and polished well to keep your welcome banner looking its best for your guests and neighbors.

The Roof:

The roof is a part of the home that doesn’t seem like it needs work. This is, until you see what it looks like after the work has taken place. If you bring in insurance roofers for any problems you might have or you do a little work on it yourself, you’ll be pleasantly surprised with how fresh you can make the top of your house look.

Front Door:

The front door is a significant part of the welcoming vibes you’re going to experience. It’s, again, not something that people initially think of, but it can have a huge impact on the aesthetics. If your home has a beautiful door, then those who walk up to your place will be in awe of the looks. There are plenty of front door ideas online and you can find so much inspiration from home improvement blogs such as this one!

The Bricks And Mortar:

Very much like the driveway, the actual house itself can look weathered very easily. This is, again, a case of spraying the dirt and age off the side if you have a few minutes. Painting the windows and guttering will also do so much for the looks. It can go from being an old, tattered home to a loved and cherished one with a bit of elbow grease!

Any Greenery You Might Have:

Whenever a home has lots of grass, plants, flowers, trees, and anything relating to vegetation, things always look and feel a little brighter. If you have a front yard to work on, then do it to the best of your ability. The effect a lovely garden can have is astonishing – it can make the entire place look brighter and more beautiful. Even those with little gardening knowledge can appreciate a pretty garden.

Give your guests and neighbors a great first impression of your home by improving its exterior!

Featured Image By: Unsplash

Pansy Party 2.0

Standard
Pansy Party 2.0

Hi! A few weeks ago, I planted a pansy patch in the front yard of my parent’s house with my dad and it was a hoot. I felt so proud of our handy work after we completed our project and smile every time I see the pretty blooms. We are still waiting to begin planting vegetables but, in the meantime, my dad has begun decking out our garden space with his vast collection of solar lights and statues. This past week, he upgraded our pansy patch to a fairy garden and I love the results! Check out the 2.0 version:

Not only is the landscaping of my parent’s yard beautiful with its flowers, dogwood tree, and raised planters but it is also filled with outdoor decor that offers adorable surprises throughout. There are an abundance of strand solar lights wrapping around trees and bushes and in ground ones that display a nightly “light show” in the yard. Not to mention his insect hotels, bird baths and houses, pinwheels, wind chimes, and bird, hummingbird, and butterfly feeders that provide perfect bird watching opportunities and the music of nature.

I was so tickled when I saw the 2.0 upgrade of our pansy patch because almost all of the decorations he chose for it were gifted by me! The fairy garden motif also was special to me because my dad and I had recently enjoyed looking at the employee fairy garden contest together at one of his physical therapy appointments. Seeing the little colorful mushrooms poking out among the flowers, solar lights, and garden gnome Godzilla brought me back to the Christmases and Father’s Days that I gifted these decorations to him and it was so nice to see him still using them a few years later.

I can’t wait to garden more with my dad and am looking forward to seeing how he upgrades our next project! ❤

What is your favorite flower? What is your favorite kind of outdoor decor? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah