Giving Thanks For Nature’s Beauty and Our Loved Ones

shutterstock_223597519The harvest is in. Across the land, we are giving thanks for the bounties of the season, for the stunning beauty of nature in its glorious colors and the warmth and love of our families and friends. Whether we indulge in a drive through our area’s most scenic locations, or enjoy a quiet thoughtful walk in our own yard, the tranquil beauty can bring joy to our souls.

Thanksgiving is most often celebrated as a big (and often loud) gathering around a festive table. However, Thanksgiving can also encompass small, personal moments. There’s no reason we can’t enjoy both — perhaps even on the same day.

A spirit of giving thanks can be lifted any day of the year, along with a cup of morning coffee or tea, while enjoying the view from a favorite window. As the birds and other wildlife awaken, so too can our pleasure in the beauty created in our landscaping. Aren’t we grateful our homes can bring such graciousness into our lives and the lives of the creatures who share our world?

During the celebration, some of us might desire to escape the clamor of the joyous holiday with a quiet walk around the grounds. That bench tucked into a far, shady corner or a gazebo on a hilltop is the perfect place to pause and count our blessings, to express our gratitude for the many gifts in our lives. Our favorite spot for reflection might be beside a small pond or waterfall as we appreciate the lulling relaxation. No matter what the setting, giving thanks and being grateful for family and friends can enhance an already terrific day.

There’s no reason that part of Thanksgiving Day (or even the later winter holidays) can’t be spent in our favorite outdoor room before a roaring fire. The sounds and smells are augmented by the scents and flavors of a cup of hot cocoa or favorite grind of coffee. Snuggling in blankets with our favorite people to watch the sunset and glimmer of the first stars can become a beloved holiday tradition.

We can extend Thanksgiving on in to the other winter holidays as we enjoy our home’s landscaping that makes the most of our habitat through every season.

We at Hidden Creek Landscaping hope your holidays will be warm and beautiful — this year and all your years to come.

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How To Use Your Patio For Thanksgiving Entertaining

Screen Shot 2015-11-24 at 4.09.33 PMHomeowners that will be hosting their loved ones this Thanksgiving don’t have to be limited to the indoors. Give your guests more room to spread out by utilizing your outdoor living area, even if there is a chill in the air. Put your patio to good use over the holidays with these helpful entertaining tips:

Create a Comfortable Atmosphere. It may be too cold to dine outdoors on Thanksgiving, but that doesn’t mean that guests can’t enjoy sitting out on the patio throughout the day. Don’t store the furniture away until after the holiday. By providing comfortable seating, your guests will be able to relax with a drink and get some fresh air. You can also set up a drink station outside with cold beverages. Depending on the temperature, you may not even need a cooler.

Warm it Up. Even if it isn’t cold enough to require heavy coats, there’s still going to be a chill in the air in November. Make sure that your patio is warm and toasty by providing a good heating source. It could be from an outdoor heat lamp, a cozy fire pit, or a built in fireplace. Make sure that you have extra wood on hand for the fire pit or fireplace, and check on the fire from time to time to ensure that it stays lit. Guests will be able to come and go from the indoors and enjoy some fresh air outside when there’s a working heat source that keeps the patio comfortable.

Don’t Forget Decor. When preparing your patio for holiday entertaining, don’t forget to add festive decorations. For Thanksgiving, you can keep things simple with a carefully arranged display of pumpkins and gourds. Follow a color scheme that matches the harvest season, bringing together warm tones and shades like oranges, reds, yellows, and browns.

These patio tips will help ensure that your outdoor living space can be practical and useful in every season. Enjoy the beauty of the outdoors this Thanksgiving and give your guests more space to relax and socialize by turning your patio into a comfortable entertaining area.

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How To Combine Lighting And Warmth In Your Backyard Design

Screen Shot 2015-11-18 at 10.49.06 AMCreating a warm, welcoming look to compliment your backyard design doesn’t have to be a challenge. Homeowners can make their outdoor living space functional and inviting all year long by combining lighting and warmth. Here are some tips on how to achieve a well-lit and cozy outdoor area:

Lighting from Above. If you want to make your outdoor living area feel like an extension of your home’s interior, you will want to add bright lighting from above. This can be achieved with just a single light source, or multiple lights. They can be wall mounted exterior light fixtures, and also light fixtures that are attached to outdoor ceiling fans. This is ideal for a patio with a dining table. The bright lighting will add enough illumination to make the area feel like another room, and it will also warm up the space on cooler evenings.

Heat Sources and Ambiance. When the weather turns cooler, you need lighting options that will also serve as a source of heat. You can create a cozy, intimate environment with a fire pit or outdoor fire place, and you will also want to place some additional light sources around to add to the ambiance. Strings of white LED lights are a great option, since they can really bring a charming look to your deck or patio. Consider a hanging lantern for above a dining table.

Landscaping Lights. Another way to add brightness to the outdoor space is with landscaping lights. No only are they important for safety, highlighting walkways and gardens, but they can also provide an elegant look. There are many styles and types to choose from, including solar powered options. While landscaping lights won’t add warmth to a seating area, they do help to create an inviting and intimate look.

An outdoor living space needs light for practical reasons, but also to create the right ambiance and make a warm and cozy area that can be enjoyed throughout the year. Homeowners can combine different light sources to enhance their outdoor space in every season. By warming up your patio or deck, you will stay comfortable outside no matter what the temperature or time of day it is.

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Patio Designs For The Cooler Season

Screen Shot 2015-11-13 at 10.41.27 AMThe weather has turned colder so it’s time to cocoon inside the house around the fire. That’s not necessarily true for many Ohio homeowners who are increasingly using their backyard entertainment areas during three out of four seasons. As long as there isn’t a foot of snow on the ground, there’s no reason that you can’t have a cookout and enjoy your gorgeous outdoor space in the colder months. All it takes are some creative patio design tips to keep you and your guests warm and toasty.

Create a Windbreak. One of the most useful backyard tips for creating a usable patio design in colder months is to make sure that you have a windbreak to prevent cold winds from chasing everyone indoors. Work with your landscaping architect to determine from which direction prevalent winds blow during colder months and set up a berm or a decorative wall in that area to block breezes. Another option is to place your patio in a naturally sheltered area of your yard.

Add an Outdoor Fireplace or Firepit. A source of heat is essential for outdoor entertaining during colder weather. From small portable firepits for informal spaces to gorgeous masonry fireplaces, the addition of heat to your outdoor entertaining area is a must. These features not only add atmosphere to your parties, but will also add value to your property.

Patio Heaters. Even with an outdoor fireplace or firepit, it’s a good idea to add patio heaters, particularly if your entertainment area is large. The further away you go from the heat source, the colder it will get. Patio heaters are available in electric or propane types and come in stand-alone, tabletop or wall-mounted models. If possible, make sure you place heaters under overhangs or awnings to trap as much heat as possible as warm air rises.

Outdoor Kitchen. This is a feature that you will use all year, but make sure you have plenty of storage space as well as a food preparation area. After all, who wants to go walking back and forth to the house in cold weather?

Outdoor Seating. Use furniture that retains warmth, but not moisture. Pick furniture with insulated padding and a water-proof protective surface that will retain body heat during cooler weather.

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