Finding joy in late summer homemaking with a fun small porch makeover that is long overdue and some homemade bruschetta made with tomatoes fresh from the garden.
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It is hard to believe that we are in the latter part of summer. It feels like it just began. Here the days have been sweet and relaxing but fruitful in their own way. Summer homemaking differs from all other seasons in the sense that there is a relaxed feeling in the air.
A time to relish in abundance and appreciate the ability to take in the slow moments. There are no school alarms or calendars to speak of. Additionally, you can forget about any missing assignments and google classroom feels like a distant memory. At least for a little while that is.
Homemaking this time of year oddly lends itself to the creation of summer fun and any sort of summer adventures we can conjure up. Sometimes this looks like a last-minute backyard picnic; other times its a fun drive to the next town over for lunch. It’s the opportunity of spending quality time with our loved ones mid-day that has suddenly opened up and who could resist?
Cooking simple meals and simplifying homemaking tasks over the typical routine and cleaning schedule we work so hard to maintain in other seasons suddenly seems reasonable.
Perhaps this leisurely season is why summer homemaking joy is such a refreshing topic to discuss and one that most of us can find value in. I must say, that with each new season, I find a new appreciation for the joy of homemaking itself.
The Summer Garden
I can’t speak of summer homemaking joy without the mention of the garden. For me, that just does not compute. Currently, the tomatoes are going crazy and the plants are completely packed. Some even over-ripened as the lazy gardener in me made yet another appearance and put it off for another day.
Nevertheless, a large bowl of harvested tomatoes lay fresh on my countertop as we speak. Some are reserved for fresh dishes while the over-ripe fruit is destined for a baking sheet. This year, the garden is not as plentiful as I had hoped. Every year I tell myself that I will be my best gardener. What does that mean, exactly? Well, it would be pulling weeds and watering regularly. That much I know. And even then, unexpected issues arise.
Several of the plants were eaten early on and others have dried out from the heat. I try to come out early morning to water before the brutal rays of the sun are at their worst. Most of my flowers didn’t make it and I am on my third try at having flowers for the summer with a few barrels holding the remains of last year’s seed saving.
We do, however, have plenty of tomatoes. So I decided to make bruschetta for lunch, my favorite summer recipe. For dessert, I made a new recipe for caramelized peaches that is an absolute must this time of year.
Awe summer, even through all the heat and toil, I can finally appreciate you. Surely, in the smallest of things. Like our tiny porch. It isn’t much in size but it has its charming qualities.
Our Small Front Porch
Since moving here, I like decorating our small front porch as the seasons change, and this year, I am considerably late for the summer season. You might think, it hardly seems worth it at this point. But who doesn’t want to sip iced tea and watch the sprinkler from a cozy curated space? It’s what a lazy afternoon is all about. After all, isn’t this the quintessential American summer pass time?
Mind you, instead of buying all new stuff for the porch, I went around the house to find different pieces to help decorate it. Although, I did invest in a new rug and some greenery. Both of which can be worked into all seasons for the porch decor.
I decided to go with faux ferns instead of real ones this year as my porch faces the sun most of the day. So any plants I put out here dry out quickly if I am not watering every morning. Honestly, who wants that kind of added responsibility? Certainly, not me. I must say, these do just the trick nicely and the neighbors are none the wiser.
Fabrics and textiles can complicate things but if you can find ones that match in some kind of way, it will work. I just so happened to find a green tablecloth not currently in use to go along with these green patterned pillows. Also not in use and I must say, it looks planned they fit so well together.
Getting it Just Right
Decorating a small porch can be tricky with the layout being so tight. I try to make it feel cozy and inviting by making the seating area accessible and having some sort of color palette to bring it all together. I like to add things like little throws, drink holders, and magazines or books to look at so that way it’s not only cute but a usable space.
A narrow porch can be difficult to work with. I first have to get the seating right and then I can bring in those touches of cozy. After fumbling around with this bulky bench I quickly realized there really is only only two ways to set it up. I went with option two, placing it width-wise to allow for more room or at least the illusion of it.
A good sweep and wipe down and it was time for me to place the finishing touches. Hanging plants, good books to thumb through, and a place to store pillows. It is all simple enough and the result is a sweet outdoor living space that is inviting to guests and comforting to us.
These little touches around the home help create a fondness for the season and even help me find a positive attitude even on the hottest of days. So while we soak up these last few weeks of summer homemaking joy, my money is on the beautiful moments over the endless daily tasks. On a joyful home over careful meal planning.
Because summer is to be savored and I finally know it.
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