I know I have said this before but of all the things I love about our house the Courtyard is the one that truly makes my heart pitter patter. I just love this space. I love the old wooden doors with the heavy hardware. I love the way the house frames the courtyard making this enclosed private space. And I adore the old Japanese vine maples coming out over the house.
And now that we've been living in our house for almost a month I can truly say this is one of the spaces we use the most and enjoy the most. When we moved in it was a blank canvas and really it still is. We have some great long term plans for this space. We want to add some outdoor lighting. I think some vintage Japanese lanterns would be awesome! We want to add a lot of potted plants and some more ferns, maybe a rock garden in the large bed. Eventually we will need to either redo or change some of the concrete..
But for now we at least have some furniture, some plants and of course a ball for Margot to play with. I placed a few of my herbs out here along with some potted mums. We also removed the small wheel chair ramp that was leading to the front door and got a woven door mat. Underneath the ramp we found the biggest scariest spiders of my life! Arg, it was awful.
The window above the steps is to the kitchen and doesn't have a screen and the front door next to the steps is a dutch door. When I'm cooking dinner I often send Chris and Margot out to the courtyard to play ball or sidewalk chalk and then I can chat with them through the window and door or Margot can stop to say hi.
In addition to our courtyard we also have a lovely back porch off the main level of the house. The porch is great because it's covered which allows us to keep furniture out all year. I can also imagine some fall mornings before it gets too cold but once the rain starts where it would be lovely to sit out here with a blanket and steaming cup of tea to read on a rainy Sunday afternoon.
The porch has an awesome view of the city, the river and Autzen Stadium. And since it's on the upper floor surrounded by big old trees it almost feels like a tree house. Another great aspect of the porch is that the kitchen window opens out to it. It's an old window without screens. Sometimes when we have company I send everyone out to the porch after dinner then pass dessert out through the kitchen window. Totally charming! I love to open all the doors and windows between house and porch and then Margot and I wander back and forth picking up, watering plants and playing games.
Right now we have our red Adirondack chairs, some little kid chairs and a small table out here. I'd love a bigger table eventually so we could serve dinner outside and maybe some retro furniture. I also think hanging baskets and outdoor lights would be great. Regardless I know this space will be so wonderful when we host our annual Christmas cocktail party.
I'm not sure if it's the place, the age of the house or just the privacy of the neighborhood but I have never seen a house that feels as connected with its outdoor space. The house just seems to fit the environmental surroundings in a really unique way.
I'm sure there will be a point when having bugs wander inside my house is no longer charming but right now I just love coming home and opening every single window and door without a screen. It truly feels like indoor outdoor living.