Outdoor Living

I love being outside in our gardens in the spring, summer and fall — seasons that every year feel too short, winter too long. Thankfully our India pied a terre has two outdoor terraces, one of them just a few steps up from our main door! Both are 1,200 sq ft spaces and someday you know I’ll be decorating them with plants and areas to sit. Plus, we’ll create plenty of shade from the sun. Coconut and banana trees are already there casting some shade.

Here is some outdoor living inspiration, of all styles and for all purposes …

Found at Desire to Inspire, this is a house for sale, so this could be your backyard (with some funds of course):

Found at MariaRR on weheartit, lower budget and I like this even better. Imagine:

Found at Outdoor Sanctuaries Tumblr, the movies outside, like drive-in movies but more comfortable!

Also from Outdoor Sanctuaries Tumblr:

If you can open an indoor space wide to the outside, it’s like being outside. Like this found at Delight by Design:

Even in winter. Found at The World According to Isa:

This feels wabi sabi? Definitely simply back to nature. Found at paonote_room269:

Less simple, also beautiful, from Better Homes and Gardens:

A city view. Found at the little book of secrets tumblr:

Found at Pinterest — a totally different view. Anyone know where photos copyrighted by Gaby are posted? I’m sure there’s more goodies there!

From Chris Court Photography. Ahhhhhhhhhhh.

There is no shortage of images of how people are livin’ it up beautifully outdoors. Follow my Pinterest Living Outdoors Board for more (400+ images there), and a Houzz Ideabook of patio/veranda/lanai photos. For now, I am going outdoors!

Did you like this post? Don't miss out on more:

What topics interest you?

A Backyard Garden

There are two gardens in the T Nagar neighborhood in Chennai that my father-in-law helped design and plant. One of them is just west of N. Usman Road, somewhere near Viveks. You can walk a path around the perimeter of the garden. While visiting there, we joined many other people enjoying a colorful, leafy and surprisingly quiet garden respite from the busy city. I need to find our photos and post them.

The Chennai garden is of course a year-round enjoyment in India’s climate. Meanwhile here in Chicago most of my plants are beginning to emerge and I’m eagerly awaiting that moment when they look full and exuberant. When the hummingbirds visit all day, and when there’s a lush mix of greenery, orange, magenta, yellow, purple … a visual delight. Here’s what I’m waiting for in the garden beds behind our sunroom:


Black and Blue Salvia

Caesar’s Brother Siberian Iris

Caramel Heuchera

Euphorbia Blackbird

Brilliance Autumn Fern

Orange New Zealand Sedge

Irish Moss


Heucherella Sweet Tea

Honeysuckle Goldflame

Baptisia Carolina Moonlight

Blackberry Lily

Cimicifuga Hillside Black Beauty

Spirea with orange leaves:

Golden Creeping Jenny

Agastache Ava


Soon enough all these plants will be crowding against each other, colors and shapes and textures mixing. And at that time, I’ll share photos of what these all look like in the garden!

We have several other gardens, but this is the newest one that I’m most excited about. It was set up to run along the far edge of our future patio, so someday we can lounge in Adirondack chairs and see how close hummingbirds will get to us!

Also right now among our trees, many are blooming: magenta crabapple, white serviceberry (?), lilac, and many maples — they look so interesting before the leaves emerge. And this is all with a backdrop of the white-blooming trees on properties across the street from us. It’s beautiful. But our weather has been crappy and photos would not look good. I will try to capture and share before  the colors all fall to the ground. Right now some magenta crabapple flowers are blanketing the ground around bright golden/lime hakone grass. So pretty.

Did you like this post? Don't miss out on more:

What topics interest you?

Seed Pods

Colors and forms of nature are great inspiration for interior decor. Here my gardens are barely emerging and I’m leaping ahead to end-of-season seeds. Check these out …

Via Utopia Images Online:

Via Lophophora blog:

Via Emily Rose Photography:

Via TopTropicals:

Via Lovely Morning blog:

Seed Pods via Dragan Flickr:

Via Kim Thittichai:

Via SAL Photography:

Seed pods inspire many forms of art …

Via Jenny Wunderly:

Via Liz Brady:

Via SeedShaman:

Via Steve Amsden Art:

Via Cathryn Shilling Glass:

Via Ari Jewellery:

Via Liz Frolich:

Yes, I am the wierd one who visits the garden centers in late October, looking for half-dead plants for their fall and winter colors, shapes and seeds. But they are still very vital. They’re just sleeping and they’ll spring up after a few months’ cool slumber. Like, right now …

Did you like this post? Don't miss out on more:

What topics interest you?