Discover the Charm of an Outside
Family Living Room.
You may not have realized but you can
instantly extend your home and create another 'room' by utilizing
your outdoor patio. With summer right around the corner, what could
be better than making your patio into a perfect family living area?
Think of the Children
The patio doesn't have to be big for
the whole family to enjoy it when the sun comes out, but if you have
very young children, you may want to think about some safety issues
as you plan your new 'room.' If the little ones have just learned to
walk, make sure the floor surface is level and smooth, that way
there'll be fewer bumped knees and scratched elbows to contend with.
Also, if you have enough space, it is advisable to have a designated
'play area' so toddlers and infants can stay far away from hot items
such as the barbeque. This all sounds pretty formal but in reality it
can just be a couple of benches with a few cushions on top that
separate one side from the other. Make sure the kids are entertained
there by maybe getting a sandbox - you can get great ones now that
have their very own sunshade over the top. A good idea is to put the
play area near to the yard side of the patio and the barbeque closer
to the house side (but not next to the house) - that way no one will
crash into people bringing things to and from the kitchen. It almost
goes without saying that any water areas should be safely fenced off.
Now the safety issues are out of the
way, you can start thinking about other details. It's highly likely
that the family is going to want to eat at some point so that means a
barbeque and a table. This depends entirely on your budget: barbeques
range from a simple dug out pit in the ground to state-of-the-art
regulated gas ones with side burners that can be wheeled outside then
back indoors when not needed. If you're short on space though, the
old saying 'moderation in everything' becomes very apt - a nice
portable barbeque that's not too big can get the job done easily and
leaves more space for a family table where everyone can eat. Again
the range of tables available is immense and all down to personal
taste. However, with young children try and avoid foldable furniture
as many accidents have occurred involving a child's small fingers and
a collapsible chair.
Every patio table should have a parasol
to shade both food and eaters on those interminably hot days, yet
umbrellas can have their uses when the sun goes down as well and it
starts to grow dark: try getting one that has dozens of small fairy
lights on the inside that start to twinkle when twilight comes, and
create your very own universe complete with constellations and
galaxies. They can be battery-powered or solar-powered so they charge
up by day and twinkle by night.
Relaxation and Comfort
If food is not a priority on the patio
then you're going to need a few comfy chairs, a hammock, or a swing
bench chair. These chairs even have their own awnings and side tables
for the odd glass of wine but you'll have to be quick to get a seat
as you'll find the kids will often beat you to them. You could even
throw down a few outdoor rugs and so put the finishing touches to
your outside room.
Evenings on the patio for family
get-togethers, parties, or just end-of-the-day relaxation will need
some extra warmth when the sun goes down so invest in a few patio
heaters and don't forget the insect repellent candles - that way the
party will go on for hours.
A family patio area is the perfect
outdoor room and over the years, will create some great memories for
the family scrapbook.
Do you have other home decor tips or
experiences you’d like share? Or do you have a request for
something you’d like to read about? Leave a comment below, and you
might find your comment or suggestion presented in an upcoming blog.
Keep reading for more about dream bedrooms, home décor and design,
and outdoor living.