Outdoor living in Phoenix is very popular due to the year round pleasant weather. Homeowners are eager to enjoy swimming pools, lush landscape, well-appointed lounging space and outdoor kitchens. Having the ability to cook and dine outdoors completes the entire outdoor living area and the experience. But some financially minded homeowners are concerned that their return on investment might not be as high as it would be for a project inside their home. However, all of the current data indicates that idea to be false. [Read more…]
As a resident of Phoenix, you appreciate that the weather is pleasant most of the year. We have heat, but that is not something which cages people indoors like snow or bitter cold. And more than 300 days of sun each year makes outdoor activities common for many people. But what is not common knowledge is that there are many scientifically proven benefits to being outdoors.
- Improved short term memory- A study at the University of Michigan found that test subjects scored 20% better on a short term memory test after a short walk among trees. Another similar study found that depressed subjects had increased working memory after a short walk in a natural setting.
- According to the Journal of Environmental Psychology, natural beauty can elicit feeling of awe which boosts mental energy. Studies have found that exposing your mind to a restorative environment such as being outside in nature, will increase your mental energy.
- If you are looking for a way to lower your heart rate and reduce your levels of cortisol, the hormone which is a marker for stress, then you need to spend some time around trees and nature. This information has been reported by multiple sources including the Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research, Environmental Health and Preventative Medicine and Biomedical and Environmental Sciences.
- If you want to protect your children’s vision you should encourage them to play outdoors. An Australian study of 2000 schoolchildren found that the more time the children spent outdoors the lower their chances of developing myopia or nearsightedness. A group in Taiwan conducted a similar study and found that outdoor play reduced the potential for myopia by nearly 10% in just a single year. These amazing benefits were reported in Ophthalmology in both 2012 and 2013.
How to Experience these Health Benefits Yourself
Technology, busy lifestyle and both work and personal commitments can make it very difficult to make time to be outdoors. But there is a very simple solution which can provide much needed outdoor time for your entire family. Contact UNIQUE Landscapes today to speak with a professional designer about creating your outdoor living space. This is not simply a few chairs on a covered patio but a full outdoor area which will include an outdoor kitchen and dining area as well as complete outdoor “rooms” for entertaining, relaxing and enjoying time with your family. Taking time to reconnect as a family at mealtime is very important, so why not include additional health benefits and spend that time outdoors?
As the holiday season comes to a close, there is one celebration left that will set the tone for your entire year. Planning a UNIQUE New Year’s Eve party under the stars is a great way to enjoy the fleeting moments of 2017 and welcome in 2018! And just a few simple tips can make your outdoor living area the perfect venue for a New Year’s Eve party.
Keep the Menu Fun
Your outdoor living space is the spot to promote mingling and casual fun to ring in the New Year. And your outdoor kitchen is the perfect place for a buffet of finger foods and appetizers. Bacon makes everything taste better. A platter of bacon wrapped jalapenos, water chestnuts and potato wedges is easy to prepare ahead of time and heat up on the grill as needed. Warm marinated olives provide a UNIQUE flavor without being too filling. And baked mozzarella sticks are always a favorite. And if you have planned ahead when designing your outdoor kitchen, then you can certainly put your outdoor pizza oven to great use. Not only will your guests enjoy the amazing fresh treat but they will also have fun creating their own custom pizza toppings at a build your own pizza station. [Read more…]