“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.” – Henry David Thoreau Michigan residents spend half the year shoveling their driveways and sidewalks, sitting in traffic and working in a confined office. With summer here, what better way to enjoy the good weather than in your own backyard? There are several different ways to turn your backyard into a vacation oasis.
- Prepare a gourmet meal in your new outdoor kitchen. Preparing fresh meals for your family not only saves time and money, but did you know cooking and eating outdoors can help increase positive emotions?
- Bask in the sun while watching your children play on your custom-made outdoor play structure. Children should be engaging in 60 minutes (or one hour) or more of physical activity each day. Physical activity can help control weight, reduce blood pressure and improve psychological well-being.
- Entertain friends and family with an in-ground pool with features like a waterfall, slide and lazy river. Not only does swimming help develop your overall general strength and endurance, but it improves your flexibility.
- Practice your putting skills at your personal mini-golf course. Playing a game of putt-putt assists in the development of hand-eye coordination in children and also helps to boost their logic by determining how hard and fast to swing the club.
- Tackle the steep 90° angle of your new outdoor climbing wall. You’ll use muscles you didn’t even know you had on this new landscape feature, and this activity will help improve your cardiovascular health, increase weight loss and increase muscle tone.
- Pick fresh vegetables and fruits from your organically-grown garden. Vegetable gardens can reduce the amount you spend at the grocery store and provide chemical-free veggies anytime you need them.
- Relax your stress away in a hot tub. Do you suffer from stress-related migraines, tight joints and muscles or arthritis? A relaxing soak in your jetted hot tub can help ease away the pain.
- Grill for a neighborhood party on your new expansive outdoor deck. Not only can you soak up sun and vitamin D on your backyard deck, but you’ll increase living space and the value of your home.
- When the cold weather returns, take a steam in your outdoor insulated cedar sauna. Regular use of a 10-20 minute sauna steam can improve the look of your skin, decrease joint pain and improve endurance.
Denise Wheaton has served as a senior vice president with Independent Bank since 1987. In her service at Independent Bank, Wheaton helps manage the bank’s assets and network of full-service banking and loan offices. Regionally, Wheaton offers community banking leadership to 22 markets, and directs branch and retail administration.