Good morning friends! How are y’all doing? On Friday we got the news that the kids won’t be going back to school this semester. I kinda figured that would happen, but having the official word made it really sink in. It feels like a really long time that we’ve been in this stay-home order and it’s making me feel blah lately. I’ve had all the ups and downs, many productive moments, and then lots of low motivation.
How’s it going for you? It still floors me that we’re all going through this at the same time. Mondays I tend to pull myself together because I have to for our set school time, so here’s hoping for a great day today!
TIPS FOR A SMALL BACKYARD & PATIO
With being home more and our weather heating up, we’ve been spending more time outside and in the backyard. It’s a small space, with a grassy yard and petite patio. In the grass, the kids play soccer, sandbox and when it’s hot enough, splash around in a little pool. We’ve also made the most of the patio area, and enjoy hanging out there too.
I’d love a bigger space with more room on the patio part, but I’m thankful to have what we do! I’ll share some of my tips for getting the most out of your small backyard and patio space too.
CLEAN YOUR SPACE
To start, give your space a good cleaning. James helped me clean our patio by using the cordless blower to remove all the dust and debris from the ground. I love the cordless blower because it’s lightweight enough for me (or James) to use and it’s powerful. To recharge, you just pop the battery out and put it on the charger. I use it every week in the garage and driveway too.
I got busy wiping everything down. I took soapy water to the grill, tables and chairs and it really needed it after sitting bare most of the winter. There was so much dirt on everything!
Then, James washed all the toys and moved the balls to the ball storage rack in the garage.
Just having your area clean and tidy will make a big difference in you wanting to use the space. Last year, we did a major wash to the windows and siding, but I’d consider hiring a professional next time. It was such a big, dirty job and I was sore for days afterwards!
But, on second thought, maybe now is just the time for something like that!
FIND THE RIGHT FURNITURE SCALE AND ARRANGEMENT
Next, decide on the best furniture scale and layout to make the most of the space you do have. Here, we only have two areas for a table and chairs and lounge chairs. James wanted to rearrange the space, so we moved the table and chairs toward the grill, and the two lounge seats to the corner.
Either way works okay for us, and we’ll probably switch it again before too long, just to keep it interesting. But, things to consider when arranging furniture is how you want to use it: for dining? just sitting? near the grill? further away? what do you want to be looking at or facing?
Table • Bistro Chairs • Rug
I’m still really happy with the table and chairs I bought last year. The table is nice and sturdy and wipes clean easily. It’s weather-resistant and hasn’t rusted or chipped at all.
I wanted something that we could all eat on without wobbling, so I got the 4-person round table that would easily fit our space. It’s 46 inches wide, so plenty of room to eat and do projects like paint or color Easter eggs.
Table • Bistro Chairs • Rug
I used the same rug in both areas to tie the spaces together. I like the simple design and I got the largest size that would fit the patio.
Table • Bistro Chairs • Rug
The chairs are darling and so chic! I’m crazy for this classic bistro style and they have also held up very well outside without any damage. I like that they are armchairs, which makes resting your arms more comfortable.
Embroidered Top • Levi’s Jeans “Sun Devil Mid” • Studded Sandals (from my latest Amazon post)
Patio Chairs • Garden Stool • Rug • Vase
In the corner, we have a little seating area with two lounge chairs. That large vase and faux flowers lives inside, but I was playing with what it would look like if I added a tall plant here. I think it would be a great addition and more on adding natural accents below!
These chairs are nice and deep and I really like the simple style. To keep the cushions looking new, I keep them in the house behind the couch! and pull them out when we want to sit in them!
It’s not that big of a pain because they are just a few feet from the door, so easy to pull in and out. And worth the little bit of hassle to keep them looking fresh and new! And clean!
I love it when James plays guitar or his keyboard. He’s gotten really good at the keyboard (he loves to play The Beatles and classical music) and is making lots of progress on the guitar (all rock there!).
Rug (20% off)
Here’s a better look at the geometric rug. It started out dark black, but has faded some over the year and a half I’ve had it. But, it’s held up really well and sweeps up nicely.
We also have these little stacking chairs that are perfect for kids Jordan’s age. We have three – one for her and two for her little cousins that are near her age.
ADD NATURAL ACCENTS
We don’t have much landscaping, but adding touches of nature make your patio that much more inviting. I love displaying succulents because they are pretty and unique and require so little maintenance. The succulents I’ve kept outside do great with just the amount of rain we get.
This past weekend, Jordan and I repotted some succulents into a bigger planter and she loved getting to use the garden tools! We took two small succulent arrangements from the grocery store and added them to this heavy concrete vase.
Succulents are inexpensive so you get a big bang for your buck. And they last forever!
UTILIZE VERTICAL SPACE
I could be better at this myself, but one way to make more of your patio is to use the vertical space. You could add floating shelves, a tall planter or hang something on the wall.
Wall Planter • Terra Cotta Pots
I’m so crazy for this unique wall planter I found on Etsy. It comes in a variety of wood stains and I chose black to go with our decor. It fits nine 4-inch pots (not included) and I found the succulents at Walmart. The hook is from Target.
I hung it just off of the patio so that it would thrive in the natural sunlight and rain.
Wall Planter • Terra Cotta Pots
GARDEN IN CONTAINERS OR ALONG YOUR FENCE
Since we don’t have much landscaping, except for a large tree and some grass, I thought it would make things prettier to spruce up the fence. We, and by “we” I mean my landscaper, Juan, added Star Jasmine in a diamond pattern along the fence. It’s been several months now, and it’s really filling in!
Juan created a diamond shape with wire and hooks on the fence, then planted the Star Jasmine at the base with bamboo sticks to hold it up.
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As it grew, I would twist and tuck it into the wire so that it would take shape along the wire. It’s time for me to go out there and fix it again. Some pieces are growing wild!
It was an inexpensive project, and really makes a nice impact!
It may not be a grand space, but it’s perfect for us!
Have you been using your backyard lately? I’d love to hear your ideas for making the most of a small space!
YOUR BACKYARD ON AMAZON
I was browsing Amazon for more patio and backyard decor items and was floored with all the fun things they have! I ordered the Cafe Lights right away because I think they will be so pretty at night and didn’t seem too hard to hang.
I’m also excited about the chic outdoor pillows, herb planters, lanterns and that fire pit! I linked everything below with helpful descriptions.
LED Cafe Lights • Herb Garden Pots • Outdoor Pillows • Footstool • Swing • Melamine Dinneware Set of 4 • Outdoor Placemats • Lantern • Outdoor Fire Pit • Succulent Planter Pots • Serving Trays • Palm plant • Table and Chair Set • Unbreakable Wine Tumbler • Outdoor Rug • Bamboo Plant stands • Bench with Storage
LED Cafe Lights • These cafe lights have over 3,000 positive reviews! I think they’ll be perfect for eventual entertaining. You can display them year round with lights bright enough to BBQ by without a flashlight, but dim enough not to overwhelm. They’re waterproof and can withstand heavy winds.
Herb Garden Pots • These are perfect for small urban gardens and the pots are lined with foil for planting. And how cute is the wooden tray?!
Woven Outdoor Pillows • Similar Pillows • I couldn’t believe these were outdoor pillows! They look so modern and kinda remind me of Nate Berkus. They’re a set of 4 for only $45 and you can machine wash them. Be sure to get inserts though.
Straw Footstool • When you want to prop your feet up (ideally with drink in hand!). They’re hollow and steel enforced which make them perfect to us as a footstool or extra seating. Not to mention they are mold proof and add that textural element.
Outdoor Swing • I can see my kids loving this swing for the backyard. It can hold up to 600 lbs, so we can use it too!
Melamine Dinneware Set of 4 • This melamine service for 4 includes dinner plates, salad plates, & bowls and is perfect for eating outside.
Outdoor Placemats • These placemat chargers are easy to clean with a damp sponge and great for indoor or outdoor use.
Lantern • I love the way a lantern dresses up an outdoor space and these come with the flameless candle.
Outdoor Fire Pit • Bring on the s’mores! This gas outdoor fire table has an ignition device that makes it easy to adjust the flame with a simple switch. It also converts to a side table.
Succulent Planter Pots • These singular succulent pots add the perfect modern vibe and you can use them indoors or out.
Serving Trays • This set of 2 wooden serving trays are made from reclaimed wood and whitewashed for that farmhouse chic look.
Palm plant • Did you know Amazon ships live plants? This is new to me, but I was excited to see this palm option for the backyard. I love the way it fills a space, especially outdoors.
Table and Chair Set • If you’re looking for a new set of chairs, check these out. They’re a great style, rust and fade proof with removable padded cushions.
Unbreakable Wine Tumbler • If you enjoy wine then you know, unbreakable is a must outdoors! These clear tumbler style wine glasses let you sip in style without sacrificing the look and feel of real glassware. Probably a great Mother’s Day gift!
Outdoor Rug • This geometric rug is eco-friendly, made from recycled straws so it’s strong and comfortable underfoot. It’s also easy to clean and fade resistant.
Bamboo Plant Stands • These stand extend from 8” -12” inches to hold your plant of choice, no matter what size pot they’re in. You can also flip the short plant stand upside down.
Bench with Storage • This bench has 70 gallons of hidden storage underneath the seat. Dress it up with your favorite throw pillows for an extra punch.
Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker • Add some tunes to the outdoors with this bluetooth speaker- in your favorite color. It has over 50,000 positive reviews! It’s also water resistant and has over 14 hours of battery life.
Smores Kit • Yes, please! These marshmallow roasting sticks are the perfect tools for making s’mores outside. They extend up to 32 inches long to keep your littles far away from the flame. They also have colored handles making it easy to remember which stick is yours.
Outdoor Storage Container • The perfect place to store outdoor patio furniture cushions, outdoor toys, pool accessories, and beach towels. This bench can also double as extra seating if needed, and holds up to 150 gallons over storage capacity.
Outdoor Rattan Sofa • I’d love to have a sofa in our backyard, and I’d love this one! It has a powder-coated aluminum frame and wide, deep body, with a gray-on-gray synthetic rattan weave. The UV protection will help it last for years outside.
You can always see what I’m ordering and recommending at my Amazon Store. It’s broken down by categories, so super easy to shop!
Are y’all spending more time outdoors lately? What’s your weather been like? We had a week of glorious, bright sunny days that weren’t hot, then rain all last weekend. We’re expected to get up to 90 degrees this week.
If you liked this post, you might like my most recent organizing projects – the pantry and holiday closet!
Now go kick Monday’s booty!
We live on the top floor of our apartment building (just 13 apartments), so we have a balcony instead of a backyard. In the spring and summer we spend a lot of time out there since we have a beautiful view of the mountains – we live near the Austrian Alps. We have a grill, a table and 2 chairs and a large wooden box for storage. Do you use your grill a lot in the summer?
We used to use it often, but I’m nervous to use it by myself. My brothers were the last ones to grill here I think on Labor Day last year! I need a tutorial about how to use it safely and then start cooking with it. I’d love to use it more!
I have a small patio, too, and a couple of things that really add to the ambiance are the string lights and a fountain. The noise from the fountain is so nice to listen to and everyone who comes over loves it. I’m in Houston as well – Joshua’s Native Plants has the best fountains. Also, tiki torches are a must in the summer to help with the mosquitos!
If you want to add more plants, herbs are super easy to grow and fun to use in your own cooking. I’m sure your kids would love getting to pick the herbs and add them to their food! Some good foolproof herbs good for the summer are rosemary, basil, garlic chives, oregano, and mint. You could stick all of these together in one large planter.
Were in Chicago and the trees are just now starting to bud, seeing your gorgeous vine gives me hope that although it snowed this past weekend we’re not TOO far behind…come on Spring!! 🙂
Where is the concrete planter from? Love it and want to recreate your idea. Thank you!!
It was a gift, but here’s one similar! https://amzn.to/2ytWbya
It looks great – we live in the The Woodlands and the squirrels have ruined more patio cushions than I care to count!
Your yard looks beautiful and so does that little patio. I love all the blue you have around. I need to work on my patio, I bought some stuff last year on sale. Thank you for sharing.
What a fantastic idea for the fence!! Our fence is right in your face practically as soon as y I u step out to the backyard. What hardware did Juan use to make the diamond shape? Is Star Jasmine low maintenance?
There’s a hook on the wire if you look closely. It is low maintenance to grow, but you have to trim it or it can grow wild!