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Backyard Patio Roundup! Decorating your outdoor living spaces & protecting them from the Sun

Welcome to my backyard! Let me start by saying living in Florida for almost 8 years I have learned that what goes outside must come back inside! The Florida sun destroys everything (but I still love it)!  When we bought our home five years ago my parents House Warming gift to us was our Patio Table and Umbrella.  This set sat out in the sun and literally looked like it was 100 years old after only THREE years.  (The set was a Martha Stewart edition from Home Depot)  The cushions were completely shot between the fading and mildew and just YUCK we tossed them.  The table and chairs were sanded and spray painted to literally make them look brand new again! We learned our lesson and had a sun lanai roof built off the back of the house and now the table stays covered.  I purchased some new cushions and a year later they still look amazing.  You can see our outdoor kitchen in the background of this photo.  Every Sunday night until Friday morning we cover the whole thing with a large tarp.  This has really helped protect the grill, granite and fridge from sun damage. 

We sit out here often for dinner and especially every weekend.  My favorite thing to do is bring out everything on trays.  Whenever I see trays on sale I buy them!  They make carrying everything in and out so much easier. I have had these plastic plates for years now, you won't believe where I got them! The GROCERY store! Every summer the grocery stores pull out some adorable patio stuff!!  I love these plates because they match my favorite summer napkins.  These napkins and rings were my mothers that she so graciously let me have! :)  I finish off setting the outdoor table by using bamboo placemats and a bamboo tiered tray that I purchased from Pier!  Its perfect for holding the extra napkins and rings.

How cute is this galvanized tray?!?! This is a current Marshalls find that I fell in love with!  I've been using this tray to carry out all the plastic plates and silverware each weekend.

In my backyard you need lots of citronella candles! The bugs at night are pure craziness!! We have tiki torches surrounding the whole patio that we use and I try to pick up citronella whenever I see it for a good price.  HomeGoods has all these super cute galvanized citronella candles our right now.   I loved these three because of the pretty colors.

This three tiered tray is new to me this year! It came from SAMS club and only cost $25!! It's huge too! I tested it out this past weekend and LOVED it! You can see I threw straws, cups, drinks, napkins, suntan lotion...just about anything on it! It's very sturdy too which made loading it up and carrying it back inside simple.  Excellent buy!

We wanted an outdoor clock that we could see while in the swimming pool which meant it would be in mostly sun and exposed to all the elements.  We finally found this "slate" outdoor clock at Home Depot for $35.   It's a pretty decent size and I liked the look.

This is some of our actual decor that stays outside and is holding up great since its not in the sun.  The anchor is already a year old  (from Kirklands) and still looks brand new.  The sailboat and fish came from Marshalls.  The outdoor palm tree lamp (with coconut lightbulbs!!) was a garage sale find.  We scored two of them for super cheap!  These decor items are sitting on a teak wood bar form ACE Hardware.  We use it as a console for the outdoor TV since we already have a TIKI Bar (also from ACE.) 

These are my favorite pots EVER!! I literally have 5 of these!  They are HUGE, heavy and hold up outside awesome!  Home Depot carries them every year and they cost $19!!

This dark stained cooler chest is something we get a lot of compliments on.  It came from ACE Hardware.  It stays under the lanai roof protected from the sun and still looks great.  The rest of the patio furniture sits out in the sun and every Sunday evening we bring the cushions under the lanai roof.  This is helping prolong their life but they are still fading. 

You live and you learn.  I have learned that unless I want to buy all new patio decor each year I need to keep things out of the sun! 




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