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Water Features: Dorky Decor Or Awesome Stress-Reducing Hack??

A couple of weeks ago Emily brought up one of her “maybe dorky but actually awesome” ideas that I hadn’t really considered . . . The Outdoor Water Fountain/Feature. Honestly, I have had a love/hate relationship with at-home water fountains. We had a plugin one in the entry of our house growing up and it sounded like someone who had consumed 10 Big Gulps and was finally “relieving themselves” 24/7. Sorry for the visual. BUT, after hearing Emily’s convincing argument for the soothing power of a water feature (she herself has a couple of fountains and a man-made stream), and then coming up to my dad’s house with a new and improved version of the fountain from my youth, I was on board.

Look, water is healing, and the sound of it is soothing. I don’t have the studies handy but it just is. Plus in a time when anxiety is collectively at an all-time high and we are spending (or should be if possible) a lot of time at home, we need to bring the sounds nature in. Well unless, of course, you live on the beach, or next to a river or any other body of water. If you do, please know that I am trying to keep my jealously at bay (pun intended), because man that sounds SO GOOD right now. But for those not living next to nature, I pulled together 36 of our favorite garden fountains so you too can bring a little water ASMR into your life. You won’t be sorry.

Actually, one more thing before we get into all the shoppable fountain options! I wanted to touch on the man-made stream. As I said, Emily has one in her backyard at the mountain house (it was already there when they bought it), and the whole family LOVES it. So I wanted to find a helpful article for those of you who might want to DIY one in your yard. Here is that article, and if you attempt it PLEASE let us know how it went!

But for those not interested in DIYing, let’s shop starting with some small tabletop fountains. These are great outside or inside. That means people without outdoor spaces (me) can benefit too!

1. Geo Glass Fiber Reinforced Concrete Oval | 2. Amelie Bird | 3. Water Fountain Rock | 4. Ternary | 5. Toledo | 6. Cylinia

I really love the simplicity of #1. It’s the kind of fountain that could work in almost any style of home. Plus finding fountains for under $100 isn’t always easy. I also love the whimsy of #2. I mean how sweet are those little birds?! (And that’s coming from someone who has had a decent fear of birds most of her life).

Next up, wall fountains (both ground and hanging)

Bunge Fountain 2.0 (it’s a DIY by my dad)

Let’s say you have outdoor space, but not so much that you can plop a large fountain in the middle of it. Please let me introduce you to the wall fountain. First up, the ground version. It’s great for those who don’t want to hang a fountain up on a wall (and make holes) but want to, like I said before, save on space.

1. Tribus | 2. Barcelona | 3. Marais | 4. Auberge | 5. Colonna | 6. Closerie

This might be my favorite category because all of the fountains are simple but special. But if I had to pick my favorite it would be #5. I mean stop it with that arch!

1. Portico | 2. Mallorca | 3. Royal Lion | 4. Rusty Red | 5. Vintage French White Enamel | 6. Tristin | 7. Vintage French Cast Iron | 8. Dunnell | 9. Fountain in Zellige

Now while a hanging wall fountain does require a bit more labor, they are also SO PRETTY! Look at #1 for a classic European style, or #5 for that perfect vintage charm, or the heavenly masterpiece that is #9. All of them are so good.

Now let’s get off of the wall and into some other options . . .

This is the front of Em’s LA house:)

Yes, this is Emily’s front yard (which we’ve never officially shot, outside of some fashion shoots and some holiday doorway styling). And she loves this fountain. It was one of the high priorities on the front yard list when she was designing it. And listening to the water cascading down really just makes walking into her home (back when we used to do that) so magical. It’s secretly so soothing.

So let’s first talk about pedestal fountains . . .

1. Aurelia| 2. Carrera | 3. Caterina | 4. Jensen | 5. High Sandstone Outdoor Bird Bath | 6. Borghese | 7. Mission | 8. Relic Lava | 9. Europa Plinth

A pedestal fountain is such a classic and elegant type of fountain. As proven by my favorites, I am really into the more traditional styles so #1 and #6 have my heart. Also full disclosure, #9 is a birdbath so you won’t get the running water sounds but look at that shape?! Exactly. So pretty.

Ok last but not least we have our big kid fountains and some non-traditional options…

1. Beauvais | 2. 3-Stacked Tubs Under Faucet | 3. Henrietta | 4. Harpeth | 5. Borghese | 6. Tall Antique Vintage Sink

If you were drooling over Emily’s front yard fountain then you are in luck because #1 is that fountain. If you have the space and budget it’s a showstopper. But if you want something a bit more modest I really love #2. How cute would it look in a garden?! Plus at $84, it’s a total steal.

Well, that’s it for today. Since it’s the weekend I hope that even if you don’t decide on adding a fountain to your home that you enjoy some form of water to cool off (maybe like this??). I am the worst at making sure I take the time to do things like that, but when I do it’s like medicine for my soul. Hmm that got deep quick! So I bid you adieu, maybe fill up my kiddie pool, listen to my dad’s fountain, and wish you a great rest of your Saturday.

Love you, meant it.

The post Water Features: Dorky Decor Or Awesome Stress-Reducing Hack?? appeared first on Emily Henderson.

How to Build an Umbrella Stand Side Table

This Old House DIY Expert and House One Editor Jenn Largesse demonstrates how to make a simple outdoor side table that holds an umbrella and has a hideaway to keep drinks cool.

This project is full of cool features, including a beveled detail that makes the horizontal boards look like one continuous layer, a holder for a removable umbrella, and a hinged top that opens to reveal containers for keeping drinks cool. Read on to learn about the tools and materials needed for this project, as well as the step-by-step directions.

Steps for Building an Umbrella Stand Side Table

Side table that keeps drinks coolJenn Largesse

1. Bevel the Edges

Using a router fitted with a Chamfer Bit, bevel the face edges of four 1 x 6 boards.

2. Cut the Pieces to Length

Using our cut list, size all the parts. Set up a stop block to ensure all the boards are cut evenly.

3. Prep the Front and Back Boards

To prep the longer pieces, clip the corners at 45-degrees so that the miter meets the beveled edges.

4. Prep the Side Boards

To prep the shorter boards, drill two pocket holes in each end of the beveled boards and in the ends of one of the lid pieces.

5. Assemble the “Levels”

Position the side boards between the front and back boards.

Screw pocket hole screws through the pocket holes in the short boards and into the long boards. Repeat to create the four “levels” of the table.

6. Join the Levels

Lay the levels on their side. Place 2×2’s cut to length along their inside corners. Position the 2×2’s flush with the top edge, and then slide them down ¾-inch to allow space for the inset lid. This will create a short “foot” on the bottom of the table to raise the boards off the ground and allow moisture to escape.

Now drive deck screws through the 2×2’s and into each adjoining side until all four 2×2’s are secured.

7. Add the Lid Supports

Add two horizontal 2×2’s ¾-inch below the top edge and along the sides to act as a stop for the hinged top pieces.

8. Prep and Install the Lid

Attach two hinges to the edge of two lid boards. Rest the boards on the 2×2’s inside the table so that the hinged edge of the boards sets along the front and back of the table’s opening.

Rotate the boards “open” and then attach the hinges to the inside edge of the table. Using a drill/driver fitted with a hole saw attachment, create a hole in the center of the remaining lid piece.

Secure the board in place between the hinged pieces using pocket hole screws.

9. Attach the Inside boards

Finish the inside of the table by attaching two shelf pieces, placed at a height that allows for your containers to fit while holding ice and tall drink bottles.

Drill a hole in the center of the remaining board, and then install it centered inside the table and flush with the bottom edge to hold the base of the pipe.

10. Prep the Pipe

To prep the pipe, drill a small hole in the base of the pipe to allow water to escape.

Drill a second hole five inches from the top of the pipe to accept a thumbscrew, which can twist into the hole to hold the umbrella pole.

Insert the pipe into the bottom hole, and then tilt the table to allow it to pass under the lid, and then rise up through the opening.

11. Add the Finishing Touches

Add a small knob or finger hole to each of the hinged lid pieces for easy access to the drink bins.

If you’re working with pressure-treated wood like me, allow the wood to fully dry before applying a finish.

Apply a bead of clear silicone caulk (optional) around the pipe to hold it in position within the opening.


What You Need:

Materials

Cut List

  • 1 x 6 Front and Back boards – 8 @ 19½ inches (Bevel edges and clip corners at 45-degrees)
  • 1 x 6 Side Boards – 8 @ 18 inches (Bevel edges)
  • 1 x 6 Inside Shelf and Base Boards – 3 @ 18 inches (Bevel edges)
  • 1 x 6 Lid Boards – 3 @ 18 inches (Trim two of these a bit short so they open and close more easily)
  • 2 x 2 Uprights – 4 @ 21¾ inches
  • 2 x 2 Lid Supports – 2 @ 15 inches

Tools

NATURAL GAS OR PROPANE? WHAT TO CHOOSE FOR A BETTER BARBEQUE

Summer is coming, and you know what that means–it’s time to bring out the barbeque and get grilling! Whether you are having a quiet backyard barbeque with your family or a big neighbourhood cookout, there is no better way to bring people together than by gathering for a meal outdoors.

The heart of summer entertaining is the barbeque, so it’s important to choose the best equipment and fuel for your lifestyle.

The post NATURAL GAS OR PROPANE? WHAT TO CHOOSE FOR A BETTER BARBEQUE appeared first on RenovationFind Blog.

The 5 Elements You Need To Create Your Very Own “Backyard Beach”

I love summertime and look forward to it every year. I believe this is in part because I am a Gemini so summer is synonymous with my birthday and part has to do with fond childhood memories of going to the beach, camping trips, and sleepover parties. The nostalgia of summer forever has my heart (and yes – it beats Christmas by a thousand miles). So in the spirit of salvaging what is left of summer 2020, I’ve made a goal to make the most of what I have. Namely: my health, my home, and my backyard.

Having a backyard is something I took for granted growing up and the more I age into adulthood the more that fact becomes a tragic loss. Having an outdoor space, in sunny California no less, is a coveted privilege. In fact, a huge reason behind my boyfriend and I’s recent move was the opportunity to have a backyard. The option to simply be outside in my own private space has become essential to my mental health and I don’t think I would have appreciated this fact had I not been forced to spend so much time here these path few months.

So long as beaches are closed and vacation plans are foiled for the foreseeable future, envisioning my own backyard oasis has become a beloved past time of mine. It’s even halted some of my living room plans (for now) because spending any time outdoors is all I want to do nowadays. So, after searching for all the elements to create my dream “backyard beach oasis” I think I’ve come up with a pretty decent formula. But I’ll let you be the judge. Let’s get to it.

Step 1: Get a comfy chair

No vacation can begin without some comfort so let’s start with some great lounge chairs:

1. Wisby Reclining Chaise Lounge with Cushion | 2. Antonetta Chaise with Cushion | 3. Reni Brushed Taupe Lounger | 4. Grid Adjustable Chaise | 5. Sling Stackable Adjustable Chaise Lounge | 6. Terassi Chaise | 7. Astola Teak Single Chaise Lounge Frame | 8. Outdoor Beanbag Chaise Lounge | 9. Alvah Reclining Chaise with Cushion | 10. Cam Sun Lounger | 11. 2 Pack Acacia Wood Chaise Lounge | 12. Metal Lounge Chair | 13. Äpplarö Chaise | 14. Crescent Chaise | 15. 2 Pack Acacia Wood Foldable Chaise Lounge

I love #2. It is affordable and it folds up so it’s easy to stow away when the weather is less desirable. But if you like a chair that could double as a nap spot #7 looks comfy as hell. I am personally debating between either #1 or #2. Which do you like better?

I know not everyone has space for a lounge chair so for a smaller backyard or balcony, a nice outdoor chair can still bring the vacation vibes to you.

1. Paradise Outdoor Lounge Chair & Ottoman Set | 2. Jaxx Ponce Outdoor Bean Bag Patio Chair | 3. Numa Outdoor Chair | 4. Ellipse Rope Chair |5. Abstract Minimal Chair | 6. Bamboo Rattan Chair with Circle Sides | 7. Cabana Chair  | 8. Vernon Outdoor Rocker | 9. Molly Outdoor Wicker Standing Patio Chair with Cushion

Remember when bean bags were the coolest thing ever? My dreams of having one may finally come true as I was showing Rocky these options and he was drawn to #2. I love the striped pattern that is very reminiscent of a 60s beach cabana and I would definitely feel as if I was on vacation sitting on it whilst sipping a margarita.

As previously discussed here, we love a hanging chair. Nothing says “vacation” like it and if you have the space it definitely adds a pinch of whimsy. Here are some that I love:

1. Capistrano Outdoor Hanging Chair & Stand | 2. Boho Hanging Chair Hammock | 3. Boho Hanging Chair with Tassel | 4. Large Hammock Chair with Crocheted Edge | 5. Outdoor Hanging Chair | 6. Cotton Padded Hammock Chair Swing | 7. Black Nylon Hammock Swing Chair | 8. San Blas Hanging Chair | 9. Luna Hanging Chair | 10. Eliott Swing Chair with Stand | 11. 100% Cotton Hammock Chair | 12. Britanna Patio Hanging Egg Chair |

I would like to a have a quick afternoon nap in #2 thank you very much and EHD has on good authority that #12 is really cute and provides the perfect relaxing touch to an outdoor space. We love an egg chair like this and it’s also great because you don’t need to find a place to hang it up.

Step 2: Give yourself some shade

Once you’ve procured the perfect chair for you, you’re going to need some shade.

1. Classic Wood 9 Ft. Round Stripe Umbrella | 2. Eastport Striped Umbrella | 3. 9 Ft. Round Lighted Patio Umbrella | 4. 6 Ft. Round Umbrella with Eucalyptus Pole | 5. 9 Ft. Round Cabana Stripe Patio Umbrella | 6. Double Scallop 9 Ft. Tilting Umbrella | 7. Beach Umbrella | 8. 9 Ft. Replacement Umbrella Canopy with Fringe | 9. Maypex 9 Ft. Patio Umbrella

This lighted patio umbrella would be great in any backyard all year round. My boyfriend and I enjoy eating dinner outside when the weather is nice so an umbrella AND lights would be a great addition for us. But, I also love #7 and #8 for a more beachy ambiance. Which one is your favorite?

Step 3: Don’t Forget A Towel

Even though the sun isn’t my BFF (hello white Irish skin) I do like to “tan” from time to time with the help of a solid SPF 30. This has become a more recent hobby so I’ve been searching for some good beach towels to use instead of using my bath towels.

1. Marina Beach Towel in Blue | 2. Insomnia Beach Towel | 3. Seacliff Towel | 4. Mallorca Beach Towel | 5. Indigo Blue Tie Dye Delight Beach Towel | 6. Mediterranean Organic Towels | 7. Omo Bath Sheet | 8. Duo Striped Warm Beach Towel | 9. Linen Spa Towel | 10. Printed Terry-Cloth Beach Towel | 11. Vintage Linen Towels, Set of 2 | 12. Malibu Organic Beach Towels

Who doesn’t love a classic watermelon towel for summer?? It just feels right. I also think this the dye option is fun and basically screams “summer”.

Step 4: Grab a drink

Of course, a beach day is not complete without ice-cold beverages…

1. Cool Bag in White | 2. 77-Quart Beverage Cooler | 3. Ice Bucket | 4. Igloo Cooler | 5. White Picnic Cooler | 6. 80 Qt. Patio Rolling Cooler | 7. Grapefruit Cooler Tote | 8. Basket Print Insulated Cooler | 9. Royal Blue Retro Drink Cooler

Yes, you are technically at home at your very own backyard beach, so a refrigerator is likely close by. But because this is your beach now, why not have your drinks by your side for the ultimate relaxation experience? Many of these are also portable, so once the world opens up you can once again take your beverages to go.

Now that you have your beverage, the only thing missing is some water activities. Yep, we are talking about kiddie pools again 🙂

Step 5: Cool down and relax

1.Minnidip Pool: That’s Banana Leaves | 2. Luxe Inflatable Pool | 3. Modern Inflatable Swimming Pool | 4. Round Inflatable Outdoor Kids Swimming and Wading Watermelon Pool  | 5.  Splash of Citrus Luxe Inflatable Pool | 6. Inflatable Pool with Bench

Never have I ever contemplated purchasing an inflatable pool and yet here we are. I was pretty much convinced I need one from this post and they’ve been on my mind ever since. The problem is my boyfriend Rocky thinks it won’t get a ton of use so are there any frequent users out there that can convince him?? People must love them because I found out in my research that many are currently sold out. Or is it just kids using them?? Please advise.

Now if your space is a bit too small to fit an inflatable pool might I suggest an outdoor mister?

1. Hydrobreeze HB11345 72 ft. Slip Lok Fittings Misting System | 2. Ultrasonic Dry Misting Fan with Bluetooth Technology | 3. WindChaser Outdoor Misting Fan | 4. Hurricane 29 in. Reservoir Misting Fan in Gray | 5. Elite Handheld Misting Fan | 6. 7″ Personal Fan

Again, if you have a small patio or balcony a mister can be a great alternative. #1 would be a good permanent investment if you are really into the idea and #5 and #6 are affordable handheld options. These are also great investments if you are suffering through LA summers with no AC because no one should have to endure that torture.

Annnnd we made it. Thanks for hanging out with me and indulging my dream of creating my own backyard beach and if I am missing anything please let me know in the comments. Happy Friday sweet friends. xx

Opener Image Credit: Photo by Sara Ligorria-Tramp | From: How To Style Out Your Outdoor Space So You’ll Actually Use It (No Matter How Big Or Small It Is)

The post The 5 Elements You Need To Create Your Very Own “Backyard Beach” appeared first on Emily Henderson.

The Best Pest Control in Birmingham

Adobe Licensed

For the best pest control in Birmingham, consider industry leaders with highly trained specialists and decades of experience—Orkin, Terminix, and Rentokil.

Homeowners across the country have to deal with the unfortunate reality of pests, from ants to mice and more. Sooner or later, homeowners will likely come across a variety of pests, and they may not have the resources, time, or energy to remediate the issue. With Alabama’s warm temperatures, this is a serious problem—one best dealt with by pest control professionals.

Conveniently, some of the best pest control companies in the country service the Birmingham area. The This Old House Reviews Team believes Orkin, Terminix, and Rentokil’s division Presto-X are the top pest control providers in the area, with highly trained specialists, decades of experience, and expertise protecting against a broad variety of pests.

If you’re interested in a free quote from Orkin, call 877-871-4752 or fill out this form. If you’d like to receive a free quote from Terminix, call 866-569-4035 or fill out this form. Rentokil’s division Presto-X services Birmingham, and you can reach them at 844-334-1157.

Why You Should Hire Pest Control in Birmingham

Birmingham homeowners have a lot on their plate, with the responsibility of keeping their home running smoothly—on top of everything else in their busy lives. Pest control is just one extra thing on the to-do list and unfortunately, it’s not always simple. Homeowners can’t just lay out a few roach traps and call it a day. They can benefit instead from hiring a professional pest control company with knowledge and expertise in eradicating many different types of pests.

Pest control specialists can remediate many different pest issues, including the ones most commonly found in Birmingham. They can assess, treat, monitor, and prevent infestations effectively and efficiently, saving homeowners time and effort.

The Most Common Birmingham Pests

The pests in Birmingham range from harmless but irritating nuisances to actually dangerous creatures that can spread disease. Seeing a single pest may not seem like a big deal, but it could just be the the beginning of a full-blown infestation of pests you may not be able to identify on your own. Here are some of the most common pests Birmingham homeowners might encounter.

  • Ants: There are many species of ants in Alabama, and some are actually destructive. Carpenter ants can cause damage to wooden structures. Meanwhile, no one wants to get bitten by fire ants or find their mounds all over their yard.
  • Cockroaches: Cockroaches are not only disgusting to look at. They can contaminate food, stain fabric, and spread diseases like salmonella and typhoid fever.
  • Rodents: Rats and mice are both prevalent in Birmingham, able to sneak through small openings into residences, where they can contaminate food, leave feces, and chew through electrical wiring.
  • Spiders: While most spiders in Birmingham are harmless, they will spend irritating webs and lay eggs in your home. But brown widow spiders are actually venomous and could cause you harm.
  • Bed bugs: This pest can bite you in the night, multiply quickly, and infest your entire room—leaving you with a huge infestation you can’t eradicate on your own.
  • Termites: Termites can cause serious damage to the wood in your home, setting you back thousands of dollars in repairs.

Pest Control Providers in Birmingham

Orkin

Orkin, a company with more than 100 years of experience in the pest control space and 1.7 million residential and commercial customers across the country, is The This Old House Team’s top recommended pest control provider. Its general pest control plan protects against almost 20 common household pests. Orkin takes an Integrated Pest Management approach, highlighting the assessment, monitoring, and prevention aspects of pest control.

The company’s specialists undergo a rigorous, targeted 160-hour training before they can go out in the field. Orkin’s customer focus features a comprehensive selection of online resources designed to introduce customers to common pest problems and the Orkin process. We give Orkin a score of 94 out of 100.

Terminix

Terminix may be best-known for its termite control, but the pest control provider also offers protection against more than a dozen common household pests with its general pest control plan, in addition to specialty control for bed bugs and more. Terminix has nearly 100 years of experience and services 2.8 million residential and commercial customers across the country.

Terminix’s pest control expert team is composed of graduate-level entomologists and members of the Entomological Society of America. The pest control provider offers an online, real-time chat function with Terminix representatives. We give Terminix a score of 92 out of 100.

Rentokil

International company Rentokil provides pest control throughout the U.S. through its regional divisions like Presto-X, J.C. Ehrlich, and Western Exterminator. The company’s pest control specialists bring together Rentokil’s wide-reaching resources and local expertise. Rentokil has been in pest control for nearly a century.

Rentokil offers the most comprehensive general pest control plans of our top recommended companies, using Integrated Pest Management through its annual Pestfree365 program. All of its divisions offer this plan, which protects homes against nearly 40 common household pests. We give Rentokil a score of 85 out of 100.

*N/A signals inconsistent accreditations and ratings

We always recommend getting multiple quotes before making your final decision. To get a free quote from Orkin, call 877-871-4752 or fill out this form. If you’d like a free quote from Terminix, call 866-569-4035 or fill out this form. Rentokil’s division Presto-X services Birmingham and can be reached for a free quote at 844-334-1157.

How to Choose Pest Control in Birmingham

When choosing a pest control company there are several important factors to consider in order to make the best decision. You should look into key pieces of information, like the types of pests the company controls against, whether or not its services are in your budget, and more.

Type of pests

Companies differ in the comprehensiveness of their general pest control plans—some might cover a greater number of pests than others, and some might cover different types of pests than others. Always look into the selection a pest control company offers.

Cost

The exact amount you’ll pay for pest control services will depend on several different factors, including the type of pest, the degree of infestation, the size of your home, and more. Companies vary in price, based on their offerings. But overall price doesn’t dictate value, so you should compare what the company provides to how much it charges. You can request a free quote online by filling out your name, address, and basic contact information on the company’s site.

Reputation

Reading expert reviews and information from real customers can help you learn about whether a company is competent, reliable, and trustworthy.

Guarantees

The top pest control companies guarantee the efficacy of their services by offering free service calls, a refund, or both. Orkin, Terminix, and Rentokil all promise that a specialist will return to re-treat any areas where you see pests return as many times as needed at no extra cost. Orkin and Terminix also offer to refund your most recent treatment if you’re not 100% satisfied.

Plan schedules

The pest control specialist can help you decide the optimal schedule for your needs—monthly, bi-monthly, quarterly, or another schedule, for example. If you have a personal preference, this could be worth exploring.

Birmingham Pest Control FAQs

Are spiders dangerous?

The majority of spiders you’ll come across in Alabama are nuisance pests—they may be annoying, but they are not venomous and cannot harm you. But the brown widow spider is venomous, and its bite may require medical attention.

Can you get rid of bed bugs naturally?

There are several ways you can attempt to eliminate bed bugs without chemicals or professional intervention, but they are less likely to be effective at eradicating an entire infestation. These include vacuuming, steam cleaning, laundering, purchasing mattress and box spring encasements, using sunlight to bake them to death, diatomaceous earth to dehydrate them, and essential oils to repel them.

How do you know if you have termites?

Signs of termites include mud tubes, the sound of termites banging their heads against the wood, peeling paint, shed wings, hollow-sounding wood, and excrement.

How do you get rid of mice humanely?

There are humane mechanical traps that lure mice into a container with bait, then snap shut over them without harming them. You can then release them outside.

Virtual Grand Opening: Cottage on the Cape Idea House

Join us on Thursday, July 16 from 12-1 PM ET, for a Virtual Open House of our Cottage on the Cape! Enjoy an exclusive 3D tour followed by live Q&A.

Experience this shingle-style home in Eastham, MA on scenic Cape Cod, from the comfort of your home!