Slice of Life: the web swing, kids art, Allbirds, out on the grill, and storing outdoor cushions
It’s summer in our house! Cameron is out of school for the summer, Madeline is about to have her very first dance concert, and vacation is just a few sweet weeks away. We’ve been grilling, having fires in the backyard, swinging and remembering what it's like to have that summer life.
It went straight from winter to summer where we live. I took this photo just a few weeks ago and there is no green on any of the trees in the back. In the last few weeks everything (including ALL THE POLLEN) bursted back into life. Now that I got myself some eyedrops and Zyrtec, it is glorious.
So what have we been up to here? Full disclosure, I just got done with somewhat of an online shopping binge. I always seems to struggle with summer tops. I really only like sleeveless tops when it is warm and my sleeveless tops are mostly tanks. I mean they are super for yard work and running but often I find myself looking for something with a little more flair.
Nordstrom is having a big sale so I tried some new stuff. Stay tuned.
First: the Web Swing!
Ohmygoodness my kids absolutely love this! I saw something similar on a website and I instantly knew it is what our swing set needed. I read a ton of review before I picked one out. Apparently many other kinds break easily, or the netting rips, or something else that left some less than stellar reviews. I finally found this one right here and it has been the hit of spring!
I mean just look at how much fun it is!
The kids are on it all the time. We have it hanging from our swingset. I bought some heavy duty swing connectors just in case it got heavy with more than one kid riding on it at a time. If I had a tree to hang it from, I totally would have tried that also.
We have had tons of kids over since we set this up and it is always incredibly popular.
Second: seasonal kid-art
I love having my kids participate in our home decor. This just makes me so happy every time I walk by. I would take this over a Picasso or Rembrandt any day. My two favorite humans on Earth helped to create it. The end.
I picked these up for Terry as a comfy shoe. He was in desperate for a shoe that does not look like: 1) he is trying to be in college (hello worn out flip flops - or, rather, goodbye because I threw them away); 2) he is trying to mow the lawn; 3) his toes, which I can see right through the hole he has worn through in the front of the shoe; 4) he is a groomsman in a wedding; or 5) he is trying to jump on a horse in the burning of Atlanta.
I found these online and they are aaaahhhhmazing! So I was intrigued by the brand because their shoes are all made of wool! I found this to be odd so I read the details and reviews. The reviews were off the chain for comfort. People were gushing about these things like they came with a bottle of vodka. In the details about the shoe and also in the reviews it mentions how these things can be worn WITHOUT SOCKS (hello! My husband!) and are WASHABLE.
That's right. When they start to stink from all that no-sock wearing action, you just toss them in the wash. This alone sold me. And, I mean, they look really nice. No burning of Atlanta shoes here.
So now that Terry has had them for a few weeks we are sold. I can wash them (yay!) and he says they are the most comfortable shoes he has ever owned. You can find them here (Nordstrom for the win!). He loves them so much that I just bought them as gifts for both my brother and my dad. Perfect father's day gift! (Pretty sure my old man doesn't read the blog so we are safe.) They do make an adorable gift too. Check out this cool box they came in.
Fourth: Grilling like crazy!
Once winter is finally over it is so nice to take the whole dinner mess outside. I load up a tray with plates, a big green salad, and some silverware, and we all play while dinner cooks on the grill. Lately I have been obsessed with just a quick lemon salmon in foil on the grill. I'll have to post a recipe later this week.
You can see below that Terry rebuilt our deck steps. This has been really nice since we have been using the deck a lot.
We also re-stained the deck, which was a super not fun chore.
Fifth: waterproof cushion storage
The epic struggle with deck and outdoor furniture in a climate where it rains. I have vivid memories of dashing outside as a kid at the beginning of every summer rainstorm to gather the deck chair cushions. (I also abused the life out of these cushions by pretending they were gymnastics mats suitable to prevent head injuries. Nope.)
I finally have an awesome deck sofa that I had Terry build specific to my dimensions based on the cushions that I bought. (From Target right here.) I finally have awesome cushions that I am totally in love with for said sofa. I just didn't want them to get ruined in one of our 400 early summer rain storms. (Monsoons?)
I found this baby online with lovely two day shipping. It was worth every penny. It has been keeping our outdoor sofa cushions clean and dry for two months now. It comes in three sizes, 80 gallon, 130 gallon, and 150 gallon. We have the 130 gallon size, but I don't think the larger size was available yet when I ordered. I would get the 150 gallon size if I were buying today.
Terry had to assemble it but it is sturdy! We keep it right off the patio so we can cushion-up when we head out, and then we put them back in for the night before we go to bed or before an impending rain storm. When we get them back out again they are always completely dry.
My cushions are always clean and dry and ready for a patio party.
We have been enjoying the return outside over the past few weekends with family and friends. Our little dog that I decided our family needed (like two weeks after surgery) has fit right into the fray and is loving our outdoor life. His name is Ozzy and he is just the perfect fit. He loves being a part of our "pack" and we are all loving him!
Happy summer, friends!