The busier and crazier our lives get, the more we value and down time outside and out of our homes. There is nothing like your first cup of coffee on a patio, deck or porch to start the day off with an attitude of calm. Also ending the day outside, whether alone or with others, surely adds a needed dimension to our lives to decompress from a busy day.

Photo: Unsplash

According to research from the American Home Furnishings Alliance (AHFA), more than 80 percent of American households plan to purchase outdoor furniture or accessories this year, up from 62 percent a year ago.

Since summer is here, my thought is that you might be inspired to prepare your spaces for the season. Now is the perfect time to be searching for sale prices! Here are some of my favorite furniture and accessories for the outdoors.


Since product manufacturers are hopping on the growing bandwagon of outdoor living, more and more furniture designs go beyond typical outdoor seating. Now, with companies such as Treasure Garden, we can create our own shade design with a vast selection of umbrellas and accessories.

The hammock is making a comeback, with cheerful colors and designs for all tastes and budgets. Plus, when most of us are realizing the craziness of our schedules is just too much, relaxing in a hammock is the perfect answer to shutting out the world for a bit.

More and more beautiful furniture pieces are now available providing an extra customization benefit that everyone is looking in outdoor living. For most of us, the plastic molded chairs are definitely not what we’re looking for! Now, to be politically correct, there is a time and place for those plastic molded chairs; however, why would you want them around a beautiful outdoor pool or kitchen, with high end grills and fixtures? Please don’t go there!


Kalamazoo outdoor pizza oven

Remember not too long ago when gas grills were considered “fancy”? Well now, the entire kitchen can move outside! One of the most sought after appliances is a pizza oven. How fun would this be since who doesn’t love pizza?

For those who don’t want to fully commit to a pizza oven, a pizza oven box  can also be a cool addition to your cook outs, and fits right on top of your grill.


From lamps to rugs, to fabric selections, side tables and tabletop dinnerware, we see the inside moving outdoors with accessories.

Portable serving carts are also super handy for those summertime outdoor gatherings.

With all that said, neither the size nor the financial expense for our outdoor spaces actually matter. What good is the most elaborate high end pool and patio if no one ever uses it? It is about the nurturing experience and that can happen anywhere we let down, let go and just enjoy.

Remember, it’s summertime and the living (should) be easy.

Living and living life together,



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