Simple Backyard Makeover: Family Fire Pit

Simple Backyard Makeover: Family Fire Pit

I‘m really excited to complete a few simple weekend makeovers this summer!

Especially makeovers inspired by my desire to create meaningful and memorable family spaces for enjoying summer evenings!

This holiday weekend we got to fulfill a long time dream, a backyard fire pit for family nights! YAHOO!

Simple Backyard Makeover: Family Fire Pit

We had kind of a sad, lonely place for a fire pit though, with no landscaping whatsoever (unless you count the weeds, which I think should totally count as landscaping). It was not very inspiring, so it was time to get to work!

We had just a couple of hours to make this space fit for an informal party of “s’mores and fireworks” on the 4th of July.

Simple Backyard Makeover: Family Fire Pit

What do you need for a backyard oasis?

A cute outdoor pillow or two.

Outdoor chairs for sitting around the fire.

Simple Backyard Makeover: Family Fire Pit

A flag, a few planters with summer flowers,  a roaring fire in the new fire pit and all the ingredients for s’mores!

Well, and about 25 friends to celebrate with you.

Simple Backyard Makeover: Family Fire Pit

There is obviously more we can do to this space down the road, sooner rather than later we plan to add a rock or stone surface under the fire pit (safety first!).  Our long range plan for our backyard is for trees, trellises, more fencing and lot of plants! It is always fun (and a bit overwhelming) to have a nice blank slate to work with!

Even if you don’t have the ideal setting or budget yet for your dream backyard oasis, you can still create a memorable space for backyard fun with your family THIS summer.

Baby steps and simple makeovers are A-OK!

A fire pit, a few potted plants and some new chairs = a backyard makeover our family will remember for a lifetime.

Simple Backyard Makeover: Family Fire Pit

Thanks to my favorite backyard makeover destination Lowe’s for generously providing the following materials featured in this simple backyard makeover:

Woven chairs, bird & blue pillows, plants and fire pit.


More weekend makeovers to come!  I’m currently working on a front porch, a deck and a little potting area! Oh, and in case you are wondering (cause I know you all are) I’m still working on our bathroom and a couple of other spaces in my house. Yes, I am making progress on that bathroom, in spite of the lack of blog evidence. I promise.

Do you have a fire pit or a special outdoor space for family gatherings?

Get Ready for Summer! Fun Vacation Keepsake Projects

Get Ready for Summer! Fun Vacation Keepsake Projects

Photo & Ideas from Martha Stewart

Since the summer vacation season is just beginning, I wanted to tell you about these fun vacation keepsakes. I’ve shared this post before so you might remember seeing it, but I’m going to share the idea again because I think these would be good to think about before the vacations begin!

Have your kids or grand kids gather mementos all summer and during any vacations so they’ll be ready to put one or more of these keepsakes together!

Happy travels!


My son loves collecting little keepsakes and treasures. Sometimes we go on leisurely treasure hunt walks through our neighborhood, hand in hand, to see what we can find. We pick up pine cones, bottle caps, pretty rocks and leaves. I love going on treasure hunt walks with him. He also enjoys finding or buying little keepsakes on our beach trips.

Sadly some of those little treasures get stuffed in a drawer or lost in the hustle and bustle of life. We try to remember to put things like shells in the apothecary jars in our front entry or the lantern on our front porch, but I really like the idea of letting him fill his own jars as a creative project.

Why let those little moments be forgotten so quickly?

I saw these keepsake jars over at Martha Stewart and thought they were a fun way to capture those summer vacation memories. Aren’t they cute? Martha suggests using bendable wire to ease trinkets into the jar if the mouth is a little narrow. I would think you could even use wire to help mementos stand up or “float” within the jar.

These jars would also make sweet gifts or mementos for:

  • an anniversary (fill with keepsakes from dating or the wedding)
  • first year of baby’s life (put their first booties, hair clips, hats, hospital bracelets, hospital snap shots, pacifier)
  • a year in review (tiny mementos from the past year)
  • a gift for grandparents or for any other loved one or occasion in life
  • you could even make one as a teacher’s gift!

Get Ready for Summer! Fun Vacation Keepsake Projects

Another variation is making shadow boxes with summer vacation keepsakes! Both from Martha Stewart.

Do you have any fun vacation plans this summer?

inspiration: Martha Stewart

Get Ready for Summer! Fun Vacation Keepsake Projects