Hope Reflected

Encouragement and Hope from God's Word

patio Archive

Thursday

23

February 2017

For the Home | 3 Outdoor Living Spaces to Make You Swoon

Written by , Posted in Gardening

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There’s just something about an outdoor living space with comfortable, fluffy chairs, a welcoming layout, and a warm fireplace that I just LOVE. If you follow me on Pinterest, you’ve seen some of the inviting spaces that inspire me. Today, I’m sharing 3 outdoor living spaces to make you swoon. Complete with all the essentials — lots of cushions, covering, and greenery surrounding, — these outdoor spaces are sure to inspire your outdoor living area this spring and summer season.

 

1. Ode to tradition. There’s something about an outdoor living space that’s completely covered and yet completely open that is absolutely beautiful. I can picture summer Saturdays spent in this space reading and summer evenings spent lounging by candlelight with family and friends.

outdoor living spaces

img src athomearkansas.com

 

2. So many spots to sit. Especially when you’re looking to entertain outdoors, having more than one sitting area is an appealing (and functional!) idea. This space has a great layout: A fireplace at the helm, a casual lounge area under a shade pergola, and a more formal dining space.

outdoor living spaces

img src Architectural Digest

 

3. A firm foundation. While this look wouldn’t work in every yard, this outdoor living space is anchored by four strong, sturdy, white pillars that really complement the other elements of this set up. The fireplace in this space is equally as strong, and acts as a focal point in this gorgeous garden space.

outdoor living spaces

img src Traditional Living

Looking for more inspiration for your own outdoor living space? Be sure to follow my Outdoor Living board on Pinterest for fresh ideas!

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Tuesday

4

October 2016

Garden Stone Border

Written by , Posted in Gardening

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garden stone wall

Our yard has been buzzing with activity this season; I’m thankful to be married to a man who is so gifted. Wes has spent several hours over the spring and summer season complementing our garden with three dry lay stone benches (you can see the stories here).

After the completion of our stone benches, Wes started on our garden stone border. Previously, we had a single row of large rocks edging our flower beds. We thought it would look beautiful to tie in the strength of the dry lay stone benches off the patio, and bring them all around the flower bed, creating a strong stone border to showcase our garden.

garden stone border

After pulling the stones that were originally edging the garden, Wes stationed some stakes at either end of the garden as well as the corner, and strung a line around the perimeter of the flower bed. He also levelled the line so it was even all around. This line acted as a guide as Wes built the border, to provide consistency in both height and straightness.

garden stone wall

Another important thing to keep in mind if you’re looking to create your own garden stone border, is how you disperse the large stones throughout the border. Wes was careful to keep things consistent so that all the large stones were not bunched in one area, but rather dispersed evenly throughout the garden wall. As you can see from the photo above, the start of the garden stone border blends well with the dry lay patio bench, and is about half the height of the bench.

garden stone border

It’s important to keep colour in mind if you’re building a stone garden border (or a stone wall of any kind, for that matter). Sometimes the colour of the stone is more important than the size or shape. Notice in the photos above, how Wes evenly distributed stone colours, size, and shape to achieve a uniform, attractive edge. The photos don’t really do it justice, but this wall is incredibly constructed, and has an even, flat top and straight lines.

garden stone border

Wes did quite a bit of working and re-working to consider where the stones would best fit. Not only is he extremely gifted, but patient as well! The end result is a classic, eye-catching stone garden border that really highlights our flower beds.

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Thursday

19

May 2016

Hope’s How-To: Build a Robin’s Nest – Part 3 – Baby Robins Are Here

Written by , Posted in Christian Living, Gardening, Hope's How-To

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mama robin feeding baby robins

They’re here!

While Wes and I were away, looks like Mama Robin had plenty of time to sit on her eggs! Four sweet baby robins have entered in to the world and are being raised on our patio. Wes has had to remind me several times to give the new family space—especially since the temperatures have been so cold—however today I was able to capture some photos of our tenants.

mama robin feeding baby robins

Mama and Papa Robin have pretty much taken over our property, and even pulling up the drive I can see them bouncing around on the lawn, giving me their most threatening glances. Fortunately, yesterday evening, I was able to get some photos of mama robin feeding her baby robins.

mama robin feeding baby robins

It is quite a phenomenon, watching robins feed their young. Robins are an altricial species, meaning that their young are hatched or born in an undeveloped state that requires care and feeding by the parents. Unlike chicks who hatch in a more mature state, baby robins aren’t the best looking birds of the bunch (although admittedly I do find them quite adorable).

mama robin feeding baby robins

Most baby robins have very few or no feathers, bulging eyes, and almost transparent skin. It is truly a miracle of creation to see these little birds up close, and also to observe the parent robins feeding their young.

mama robin feeding baby robins

Interestingly enough, robins start feeding at sunrise, and often Mama and Papa robins feed their young about every twenty minutes from sunrise to sunset. Their diet consists mostly of worms and berries.

mama robin feeding baby robins

Typically it takes baby robins two weeks (likely 9 to 16 days) to be fledged before they fly from the nest, and you can usually tell once baby robins are a week old as the parent robin(s) stop sleeping in the nest around that time.

mama robin feeding baby robins

Another important thing to remember about robins is that the parent robins go by sight and sound, not by smell. This means, that unlike other animals with young, if you discover a baby robin that has fallen from the nest, you can gently pick it up and place it back in the nest without the Mama and Papa robins abandoning the fledglings.

mama robin feeding baby robins

“Look at the birds of the air….” {Matthew 6:26}

 

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Monday

25

April 2016

Flower Container and Planter Inspiration

Written by , Posted in Gardening

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I think it’s safe to say that Spring has sprung, and that means people everywhere are readying their yards and porches for the agreeable weather ahead. If you’re looking for front porch inspiration, check out these flower container and planter ideas. There are so many beautiful planter combinations out there!

  1. Bright Potato Vineflower container and planter ideaWith any planter, a good rule of thumb is to include some plants with height, and others that hang and add interest. Enter the vivid green potato vine. Easy to combine with almost any other flower, potato vine adds contrast in this planter.

2. Rainbow of Colour

flower container and planter idea

While sometimes it’s cool to keep colours classic (think whites and greens), filling a container with flowers of several shades is like an instant encouragement! The pops of purple, yellow, and red in this planter are so bright! And remember, a great container garden has height as well as hang — and this planter is a perfect example.

3. Cabbage!

flower planter and container idea

While this container is more suitable for the cooler fall months, I’ve gotta say, I’m LOVING the colourful cabbage and ornamental kale in this planter! Add to that the white pumpkins, and you’ve got a container that’s as interesting as it is beautiful.

4. Unlikely Flowersflower container and planter idea

If you’re like me, when planning a flower container garden, tulips aren’t the first flower that comes to mind as a good candidate. That being said, I’m loving the look of these planters, filled with lots of seasonal favourites, including several varieties of tulips. These containers are also a great example of the rule of threes: Try combining three planters of varying heights, filled with complementary flowers.

For more flower container and planter inspiration, visit my Pinterest.

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