Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Just Throw it in the Back

That is pretty much what I feel like we've done to our amazing back porch. We certainly aren't doing it any favors right now...We were lucky enough for our builders to build a nice large back deck with plenty of room for entertaining and dining. The problem? We have no furniture to entertain with or to dine on.

The one thing we do have is a pretty nice little grill. Back when Tim was a baseball coach he played in the local school district's coaches association golf tournament. He had some raffle tickets and took a chance by dropping them all into the grill raffle. Lucky for us, he won. Around this time two years ago I found some excellent deals on grilling tools and being naive bought them all. So if anyone needs to borrow a rib rack, hot dog roller, kabob rack or anything else you could possibly think of for a grill, we've got it.

As I bought all of the junk I was actually smart enough to buy a few necessary items that have come in handy like a grill cover, light and a mat the grill sits on so it doesn't stain the deck. Unfortunately the grill was not on the aforementioned mat when I made rotating fireballs rather than rotisserie chicken. Long story short, when you are using the rotisserie and the chicken isn't cooking fast enough turning on the bottom burners does help them to cook faster but only in the flames shooting out in every crevice of the grill and the chicken is so burnt that touching it literally makes it crumble kind of way, no joke.

Back in November the movers brought in the still boxed up grill and put it on the deck I had every intention of  having a nice little chair and table set to accompany it by this time of the summer. Then a sweet bed caught my eye and after that I found two amazing nightstands that I had to have. Not to mention that infamous porthole mirror. We did hit the jackpot in the the grill is a pretty deluxe stainless steel model with quite a few add-ons. Tim's manhood has been stroked quite a few times as he shows it off to visitors. I always think its hilarious how it plays it off like "yeah man I guess its a pretty sweet set-up" when I remember how giddy he was when it was first put together, not to mention how protective he is over keeping it covered and cleaned. I'm still apologizing for the burn marks that remain on it from the fireball chicken.

In addition to the grill we also have two Adirondack chairs that Tim's mom got for him back when he was in college with the school logos on it. Once we get our dining set I want to put that in the shaded area below the deck. I just envision sitting around drinking lemonade watching our little puppy run around in the backyard.

Here are some photos of how it looks right now, sorry they are so dark. I didn't want the workers next door to think I was trying to get some photos of them, ha!

Things we have left to do here:

1. Get a patio set - Kind of one of the basics for a deck and we don't really need anything special but it would be great to get something to enjoy the cooler summer nights that should start coming pretty soon! Target has a great little set that would be perfect and we could get it all, table, 4 chairs with cushions, umbrella and stand for right around $1,000. From what I've seen that doesn't seem too bad, especially with it being Smith & Hawken (a brand I love).

2. Stain the deck -  Technically we should've done this already but I've been absolutely dreading it so looks like we will be taking care of it this fall and I just happened to look out while it was raining the other day and decided that we need to stain the porch the color the wood gets when its wet. Yes, strange I know but I love it. From what I've been able to figure out it looks like Behr's Natural Cedar is the closest to that color.

3. Get an outdoor bar table - Ballard Designs has one that I like a good bit right now. It would just be nice to have something to put the plates of food to be grilled, clean plates for pulling things off the grill and even a little serving spot if we are having a larger party. Right now Tim gets to do a balancing act of old plate, new plate, grill tools and seasoning items out there since the sides of his grill are pretty minimal. Although it does a good deal for my entertainment value I do feel bad for him...sometimes.

4. Get some outdoor curtains - have I mentioned that our neighbors have begun building their new monster of a house within "spitting distance" as Tim like to refer to it. (I hate to ask why he calls it that because I have a sneaking suspicion that name may have resulted from his own testing) Not only is their house extremely close but they also have a large window in their family room that stares straight out onto our porch. So much for hanging out in my pjs in privacy. The other day one of our friends mentioned that with their porch being so incredibly close to ours we should just combine the two. With that in mind I have come up with a plan that if we put curtains up on the portion of our porch that is covered we can gain back a good bit of that privacy and since that won't be a permanent thing we can open and close them as we please depending upon how social we are feeling that day. Ballard has some great color options as well as some outdoor tiebacks that could work with our friendlier days.

5. Up the privacy a little more - by adding in a nice big square umbrella over the grill and bar table area. This could not only give us back some privacy where curtains won't work but it can make grilling on a hot summer day a lot more comfortable! Pottery Barn has some good options, obviously we wouldn't go with red but this is a good example of what would be a perfect fit!