Summers in the mid-Atlantic region can be brutally hot and humid. It’s hard to remember what we did before air conditioning. But sometimes in the evening, or when there is a bit of a breeze, or even at the beginning of a thunderstorm, there is nothing better than relaxing on the porch. A ceiling fan on a porch is one of the best things ever, but once that is in place, there are a lot of decisions to be made. Comfy chairs, a hammock, a swing, somewhere to have a meal. Whatever your choice, nothing says summer like sitting on porch, watching the fireflies, hearing kids playing in the neighborhood, and having something cold to drink.
With the spring blooms behind us and the early summer blooms bursting out all over, it’s hard not to be thinking about gardens. And whether you are a real gardener, a wannabe, or merely a spectator, it’s also hard not to be enticed by a charming garden shed. They come in a million shapes and styles. Given their small size and the fact that they can be built with less care than a house (i.e., less expensively), garden sheds can be the perfect laboratory for exploring your design fantasies or expressing your personality.
When I think of garden sheds, I think of sheds that are not just little buildings set in a garden, but sheds that are actually used to support the act/hobby/art of gardening. But there are all kinds of other possible uses, wood shops, art studios, writing retreats, play houses, and the list goes on. I think I will leave those for future posts. Today I present garden sheds used for gardening–although some of these examples may in fact be used for other things.
When given the opportunity to start planning a kitchen from scratch most people opt to have some sort of pantry. Cabinet makers have come up with innovative ways to make it possible to fit pantry features in cabinets of all sizes, but I think the minimum requirement for a Mom Pantry is to have a full height cabinet from the floor all the way up to the top of the soffit or ceiling. But you can’t stop there. It should also have racks on the inside of doors or pull-out shelves, or some other set up that allows users to see easily what is inside without having to dig around.
Cabinet pantries can work really well for most of us to live happy and productive lives, but there is something so attractive about a full-on, walk-in pantry. You can see things easily, kid-friendly foods can be kept on lower shelves, and there is plenty of room for bulk purchases. I’ve even seen some with coffee making stations to keep all of that clutter off kitchen counters. The possibilities are endless.
We’ve been thinking a lot about rainy days recently, and not just because it seems like it may be a bit of a wet Spring. No, the real reason is that we have a few sets of permit drawings that have been passed back to our engineers with comments about meeting storm water runoff regulations. As various levels of government and regulatory agencies throughout the Chesapeake Bay watershed step up their game to protect the Bay, storm water runoff regulations are starting to have a pronounced impact on how homeowners deal with their own runoff. Or at least it is for those homeowners who need a building permit.
We’ll have more to say about this some time in the near future, but for now we thought we’d leave you with one of the prettier ways to deal with storm water on your property: Conservation or Rain Gardens.
Before the pretty pictures, we’ll let this graphic tell the rain garden story.
Welcome to At Home with MK–a blog for those of us love everything about the world of home design. Although we build homes for a living (at MK Development) we can’t get enough of faucets and windows and doorknobs and paint colors and…well, you get the point. And being engineering geeks we even get excited about the technical stuff, from energy-efficient windows and green roofs to footings and foundations.
So stay for a while, look around, let us know what you think, and most importantly, make yourself at home.