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Guest Picks: Life Outdoors
Now that the weather has warmed up, my family is spending more and more time outside. Not only are we grilling often, but we're also relaxing and enjoying our outdoor space. Whether we're entertaining or simply lounging around, it's important to have an outdoor space that is both fun and functional. This ideabook has a few of my favorite outdoor items, as well as a few of my wishlist items. — Michelle from Stuttering Shell
Mason Jar Drink Dispenser - $69
I love Mason jars, so I love this Mason jar drink dispenser. It's whimsical, it's functional and it's perfect for summertime cookouts.
Karlsö Umbrella, Hanging - $99
An offset umbrella is a great way to provide temporary shade for your outdoor space, especially when dining outside. This one is functional, fabulous and easy on the pocket book.
Lowrey Three-Piece Wicker Patio Swivel Chat Furniture Set - $499
I have wicker patio furniture with comfortable cushions that I bring out of the garage every spring when the weather warms up. It's stylish and provides great seating for guests. This set from Target is fun, and I love the storage underneath each seat.
Claudia Pearson Dog Plates - $16
Normally my family uses paper plates when eating outside, but wouldn't it be fun to serve grilled hot dogs on these plates?
Vintage String Lights - $99
I have a canopy that provides shade for the patio, but it gets too dark once the sun goes down. My husband and I have talked about getting string lights to hang inside the canopy, and I love the look of these vintage bulbs. This is definitely a pricey option, but it's a look that will inspire me to find an affordable alternative.
Royal Hardtop Gazebo - $1,399
Speaking of canopies, this hard-top gazebo is at the very tip-top of my wish list. It's definitely a splurge, but not having to replace a fabric canopy cover every two years (as I've had to do twice already) makes the price point worth every last penny!
Flora Linear Plant Stand - $199.99
A big part of my family's outdoor life includes plants and gardening. This year we planted herbs in pots and scattered them throughout the patio space. This plant stand would not only accent our outdoor decor, but also provide a dedicated space for all of the herbs we are growing.
Personalized Tree Swing - $129.95
How fun would it be to have a swing hanging from a tree? I have plenty of pine trees in my yard, but no swing! I love the idea behind this personalized option. If you're not so crazy about the price point, it could easily be made with salvaged wood and a burning tool.
Brinkmann Smoke N' Grill Five-Burner Propane Gas Grill - $449
Outdoor living would not be complete without a grill. I own this Brinkmann Smoke N' Grill and love it. Granted, the smoker is not large at all, but it's enough for my family of four. My husband loves that he has the option of using the smoker or the grill.
East Point Seven-Piece Outdoor Dining Set - $499.99
My family has both outdoor furniture for extra seating and an outdoor dining area. This set is a great option for anyone who wants to dine alfresco. It seats six, two of the chairs swivel and there are no cushions to worry about.
Adirondack Rocker - $349
Adirondack chairs are my favorite. A few years ago, I was gifted two of them for Mother's Day. But this chair? Oh my gosh, it's not just an Adirondack chair. It's a rocking Adirondack chair. I want this — no, no, I need this chair.
Picnic Table Condiment Set - $59
What a cute condiment set to place on your outdoor dining table! I love the look of this whimsical set.
Pleasant Hearth Elizabeth Slate Fire Pit - $169
My husband (a former bricklayer) built a fire pit in the backyard when he installed a second brick paver patio outside of our storage shed, which he also built. Before we had a permanent fire pit, we used a metal pit that was gifted to us one holiday season. This option from Home Depot is a great item for anyone who wants to add warmth to their outdoor area.
Oakland 80-quart Steel Patio Cooler Cart - $149
I own quite a few coolers of different sizes, shapes and colors, but I also have one very similar to this that gets used every time I entertain. First of all, it's on wheels. Second, it's much more stylish than the typical cooler. Third, it has a bottle opener. Lastly, it can hold a lot of ice and beverages. If you're looking for a cooler to use for your next patio party, this is a good option.
Suncast Trash Hideaway, Resin Wicker - $35.99
Any outdoor space would not be complete without a trash can. Seriously. This trash can is certainly more visually appealing than your typical outdoor trash can.
Outdoor Hammock and Stand Set, Beige/Brown/Off-white Stripe - $130.99
Hammocks are expensive. While I do have pine trees in my yard, their spacing is not conducive for a hammock. This set from Target, however, eliminates any problems with setup in my backyard. It is affordable, but will it keep my husband from mowing the yard? Hmm …
Outdoor Adirondack Pet Bed - $149
When it comes to outdoor living, I cannot forget about my canine friends. I have two Boston terriers, Frisco and Buxton, who enjoy being outside when my family and I are outside. If we have a comfortable place to lounge in the sun, so should the dogs! This Adirondack-inspired dog bed is adorable.
Lodge Cast Iron Hibachi Grill - $145
I spent the early years of my childhood in Honolulu, Hawaii, and I remember watching my father use our Hibachi grill on the lanai. This is such a great barbecue option. The grill is made of cast iron and is perfect for a small patio space or someone who doesn't always want to fire up the big grill.
Citronella Mosquito Plant - $5.98
I know what you're thinking, and yes, you can buy plants online! And your outdoor space needs one or two citronella mosquito plants. They smell just like the citronella candles, but you won't have to worry about an open flame.