My memories of a front porch go back to when I was very young. My grandmother had a large front porch that covered the entire front of the house. The porch had a swing large enough for several people to sit on and plenty of room for children to play. Several houses down from my grandmother, our good friends, the Schisslers, also had a large front porch with a swing. Since the Schissler’s house was our second home, there was always a large porch to play on and a swing to sit and watch the goings on of the neighborhood.
In the late 1960’s and early 1970’s no one had air conditioning. When the temperatures began to rise, often the faint breeze on a shaded porch was cooler than the inside of a house. So when the summer sun began to set, porches across the neighborhood came to life. Ice tea and Kool Aid were sipped. Adults puttered in the garden, children brought out their toys, and watching the goings on of the neighborhood from my vantage point on the swing was a pleasant pastime.
These days I do not have a large front porch with a swing. I have a compact little porch that brings me great joy. From spring until late fall, it is on my porch that I take a few moments to enjoy a cup of coffee first thing in the morning. It is where I go to get some fresh air and quiet my mind. And, just like when I was a kid, it is where I like to take a peek at the goings on in my neighborhood, taking a moment to wave or share a short conversation with neighbors passing by.
Whether it is an old fashioned front porch that would make Norman Rockwell proud, a small space like mine, or a backyard patio, outdoor living spaces,are a simple pleasure to be enjoyed.
If it has been a while since you have enjoyed your outdoor space, here are a few ideas to sit down, wind down, and take a relaxing breath of fresh air:
Start your day outside. Grab your coffee and some breakfast and soak in the first rays of the morning sun .
Watch nature. Birds, dragonflies, and squirrels. They are outside and free entertainment. If you have the space and the interest, I know friends who have created bird habitats. Many of my neighbors have feeders so I am treated to robins, finches, swallows, and even a glimpse of the occasional humming bird. Take a minute to enjoy the life around you.
Create. Outdoor spaces are perfect for enjoying your art, crafts, or writing.
Catch up on your reading. Take out your favorite book or magazine with your favorite beverage. Sip, read, and enjoy.
Get Social. Take a minute and chat with your neighbors. A sense of community makes our neighborhoods stronger, safer, and more pleasant to live in. Of course, if you have the space and are so inclined, invite neighbors over for snacks, drinks, and conversation.
Exercise your green thumb. Plants and gardening can be very therapeutic and a nice way to relax in the evening or start the day. A few container plants on a porch or patio makes a place feel warm, and inviting. If you are not confident of your gardening skills, I can say from experience, Geraniums can make anyone feel like a master gardener.
Relax, meditate, reflect,plan, be grateful. These things are essential for an organized, healthy mind and productive life. What better place to practice mindfulness and gratitude than your porch or patio. Step outside, breathe the fresh air, and get your mind in order.
As always, I would love to hear from you? Do you have any thoughts or memories centering around porches or patios? Do you have any other simple pleasure you would like to share?
Thanks for stopping by the blog.
Until next time,