Our weather is all over the place these days with sunshine and blue skies one day followed by freezing rain and snow the next.
Thankfully, we know it won't last forever and I'm really excited to get my deck ready for another great summer season in the mountains.
Last year was my first season in the house and I really tried to do what I could to create a welcoming and relaxing outdoor entertaining space.
Some comfortable seating at one end of the deck paired with a propane fire pit and a large offset umbrella made for a terrific conversation area.
We spent many a wonderful evening by that fire pit last season!
I had various pots of flowers on the deck, making us feel as if we were enjoying time in a cottage garden, not an elevated deck. Many of the flowers I plant near our seating areas release their fragrance on a balmy evening, all the more reason to linger out on the deck into the evening hours. I also tend to use a lot of white in the areas we sit in the evenings as the brighter flowers really show up well in dusk and low light. Plus they make all the brighter colors really pop in comparison!
There is a round dining table near the conversation area where we enjoyed many lovely meals throughout the warmer months. The proximity of the table to the fire pit area made it an easy transition to and from the table to the fire pit for before-dinner or after-dinner cocktails.
I like to set a nice table when dining alfresco - the act of gathering together around a table and sharing a meal as a family is a cherished one in a busy household and should be treated as so.
It almost feels as if I'm up in a tree house at times when the leaves are all filled in. I feel at one with nature and a little closer to heaven out there!
I even love the view looking down from the deck into my entry garden and birdbath.
The other side of the "L" in my "L Shaped Deck" leads to the kitchen door and smaller staircase and is far more utilitarian. The BBQ is out there, as well as a serving cart, ice cooler on wheels, watering can, etc. But that doesn't mean it has to be an eyesore.
I planted all sorts of flowers to grow up the deck railings including my favorites - morning glories and gloriosa lilies. They were the first things I saw when I looked out my kitchen window, or when I stepped out onto my deck. What a lovely sight to start my day!
I think some of the most important elements in creating a wonderful entertaining space outdoors include comfortable seating, tables to rest drinks/food on, lighting and/or candles to extend the celebration into the evening, and flowers/plants to soften the edges and perfume the air.
Add some good food, cocktails, soft music, and good friends and you've got the making of a wonderful evening.
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