I don’t know about you, but in this part of the world, summer has been amazing. The weather has seen the family spend a lot of the day in the garden having fun and not a tablet or phone screen in sight most of the time.
If you remember the post from a little while back on adding colour to the garden (which you can read here), you’ll know that taking time out to spruce up the garden and carrying out little DIY projects work wonders. It can change the garden from a neglected space to one the family can spend all day and night in when the weather is as fantastic as it’s been.
If you’re in the middle of sprucing up your garden, here are some ideas I think will help make it an inviting space all summer long.
When playing outside the last thing you want are kids asking for tablet time or huddled away in a corner to play a video game. The easiest way to combat that is by going for very traditional garden games. That doesn’t mean finding the nearest tree to make a rope swing on, but getting some things that you would’ve played growing your kids may never have heard of and want to have a go with.
Garden games are very cheap online and proving to be very popular in the home sections of the biggest supermarkets. I’ve seen everything from a tug of war and limbo to Quoits and jumbo Jenga for sale in Tesco, Sainsbury’s and home stores.
One the cheaper end of the price scale, Flying Tiger have garden games and toys for as little as £1 in their stores. Their website only ever shows new products, but I’ve seen very cheap hula hoops, water guns and other games at a great price.
Chill out, and don’t feel chilly
Even though the British summer is a great thing, as soon as the sun decides to head down for the evening, you’re going to have a very cold garden. When you’re entertaining guests, the last thing you want is for everyone to shuffle indoors or ruin the summery mood by shivering in the garden.
You can keep everyone cosy outdoors in a few ways. If you have space and budget, I suggest looking around online for electric bar heaters that you can attach to an exterior wall. A lot of patio heaters can be cumbersome, expensive and need gas, so this is a nice alternative you can have wired in no fuss. Small chimineas from stores like Homebase and Wayfair can be cheap too but do take up a lot of space and need to be looked after (spiders love to make webs in them over the colder months when not in use).
And always remember to stock up on throws and blankets. If you have wicker style furniture in your garden, they can feel cold to the touch at night, so having blankets for guests to stay outside is a smart idea.
Make a storage area
A great day spent in the garden can go well until you look around in the evening and see things strewn all over the lawn. It helps to be practical and create storage solutions in your garden.
If you can afford the space, creating something like a dedicated shelf near the barbecue area where you can keep plates, glasses and cutlery on helps avoid the garden become messy around cooking time. We’ve all been there when there’s a mini treasure hunt to find where someone left the ketchup bottle for the burgers.
Another simple solution is to have dedicated storage boxes for garden specific items, not unlike we all do for Christmas decorations. Instead of hiding the cushions for the patio furniture under the stairs or in the garage where they’ll gather dust and get dirty, keeping them in a storage box makes tidying away go much easier.
And if you do plan on bringing cushions or pillows out from the living room and bedrooms, I do recommend buying some cheap new covers you can pop on after they’ve been used outside all day. It’s needed when someone in the family may suffer from hayfever.
Want to read more about home improvement ideas?
Check out all my posts on projects around the home here.
Disclosure: This is a featured post.