Saturday Morning Devotional
An Outdoor Sitting Area
Back in the summer of 2020, I had the idea to do a DIY project and build an outdoor sitting area in our backyard. We had the perfect place under the canopy of a couple large trees and a fire pit that a friend had built for us. We found some antique bricks that Jay’s grandparents had stored behind their barn and got busy!
I had no idea how much work this little project would take; it was definitely a labor of love in this hot Texas heat. If it hadn’t have been for the canopy of the trees, we would not have been able to do it.
The fire pit was the focal point, so we added the brick around it. Of course the antique brick was the most challenging part of the outdoor living space. We filled in the gaps with the smallest crushed granite we could find, built a wooden frame around the edges, and added white rock between the brick and frame. After that part was finished, the rest was fun!
The Finishing Touches
I really wanted this outdoor space to be comfortable during summer nights and warmer weather as well as the chilly nights. We wanted to enjoy this perfect space almost all year long, as long as the weather conditions would allow. We ended up adding:
- Adirondack Chairs – Additional Seats Available
- Red, White, and Blue Pillows
- Outdoor Lights
- Outdoor Storage Box
- Potted Plants
- Outdoor End Tables
- A few other Decorations
- Fire Starting Supplies
- A Hammock on a Stand, off to the Side
- The Fresh Air was FREE.
This outdoor living area is one of our favorite places. It is a great place to have a quiet time, read a good book, or just sit and listen to the birds sing. It is a perfect way to unwind after a hard day – a great investment!
The Outdoor Sitting Area the Following Year
The next summer came along, and the outdoor sitting area didn’t look as nice. Over time, the bricks had algae growing on them from the rain and watering the plants. Fallen leaves from the canopy of trees had gotten into the surrounding rocks, and you guessed it, the birds had left their mark on the place.
As much as I did not want to, I got out the power-washer and cleaned it all really well. The problem was that it caused some of the crushed granite between the bricks to go everywhere, including into the surrounding rocks. It didn’t look great, but I left it, and we enjoyed another year.
And Yet Another Year
As this summer approached, I knew I needed to clean it up again, but this time my plan was to add a sealant to the brick, hoping that would help with the algae. Fallen leaves were all in the rocks, and the birds continued to leave their mark on it. As we walked out to assess what needed to be done, Jay asked, “Who’s ideas was it to put it under these trees anyway?” Immediately I thought of a scripture:
“Without oxen, a stable stays clean, but you need a strong ox for a large harvest.” Proverbs 14:4
Blessings in the Mess
A friend of mine used to have a dairy farm, and she had that scripture posted at the gate. Without the mess that the cows made, they wouldn’t have had the milk or the income that they provided. They go hand in hand. Sometimes you have to endure some unpleasant things to enjoy the good things. When you think about it, the benefits usually far outweigh the unpleasantries. I can’t help but think about a few of these things:
- Having to clean house, but having a nice place to live
- Doing dishes, but having food to eat
- Having your carpet shredded (& pillows, rugs, etc.), but getting to enjoy the love of a dog
- Having your clean house messed up, but getting to make memories with family and friends
- Traveling a long distance, but getting to enjoy a vacation
- Paying for gas, but getting to have transportation
- Having to clean up a sitting area, but having a place to sit in the shade, listen to the birds, and enjoy family
I could go on and on with this list. As you can see, they are all well worth the cost! I look forward to hearing some of the things you could add to the list. Please share in the comments.
A Cleaned Outdoor Sitting Area
We did get the outdoor seating area completely cleaned up and sealed. We cleaned out the rock area, refilled it, and added in new pavers’ sand between the bricks. I even bought the cutest pillows to add to it. It looked really great just long enough for me to snap a picture. Leaves have now fallen, and the birds are full of life. I will take it though, because the good far outweighs the bad!
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Until next week…
Have a Grace & Joy-Filled Day!
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“When I am filled with cares, Your comfort brings me joy.” Psalms 94:19