Suburban Oasis


I’m pretty obsessed with my backyard. After 10 years of apartment living, I didn’t realize how much I missed having a private outside space. Additionally, having a fenced in yard is such a luxury with a dog; now we can just open the sliding the door instead of having to walk him first thing in the morning and right before bed. Finally, at the end of the day, it’s the perfect place to escape with a crossword puzzle and a glass of wine (yes – I’m an old lady). 

We moved into our house at the end of September and then I was super pregnant for the first summer in our new home. So, we didn’t really turn our attention to the backyard until almost two years after we moved in. Originally, our fence was lined with forsythia bushes; they’re pretty scraggly and only flower for approximately five minutes; thus, we decided to rip them out in favor of planting something a bit more manicured.

We first planted arborvitae (the tall evergreens) that will eventually grow to about 8 feet, followed by blue hydrangea bushes near the fence and a white tree-like hydrangea in the garden closer to the deck. Then we filled in the rest with perennials that caught our eye at the store. Perennials are more expensive than annuals, but SO worth it since they come back every year. Nearly everything we planted indeed returned the following summer – all we had to do was mulch and enjoy! Also- behold my cool app that lets me label photos:IMG_4017Of course, as anyone who’s engaged in home improvements knows, one project always leads to another. Once the bushes were gone from the fence, we realized that it was in pretty rough shape. We replaced it with a beautiful cedar fence in the “Capped Charles” style – it smelled amazing for weeks.

Finally, despite how beautiful the backyard was shaping up to be, we still didn’t spend much time relaxing out there because our patio furniture (a hard, metal cafe set from Target that fit on the deck of our previous apartment) was so uncomfortable. Choosing a new set was more difficult than expected because the inexpensive options were made of cheap plastic and the mid-price options were made of regular wood that might not withstand the elements. We really didn’t want to buy something we’d have to replace year after year, so we decided to invest in furniture from a company called Polywood. The frames are made from recycled plastic with a wood-like texture and are guaranteed to last for 20 years, spending all four seasons outside. The cushions are upholstered in Sunbrella, which has held up really well. At first, we were really obsessive about bringing them in before the rain, but have been more lax this season with no negative consequences; they seem to dry in minutes as soon as the sun comes out. We completed the look with an outdoor rug, foot rests, and a side table from Target.

Now we can put up our feet and enjoy our hard work over a glass of rosé.

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