11 Fun, DIY Backyard Projects that You Can Do This Year!

Do you want to spruce up your yard and/or patio for the nice weather this year? Are you wanting to try out some new DIY projects? Check out this cute and (mostly) easy DIY Backyard projects! I think I might try a couple of these out with my kids.

1. DIY Outdoor Cinder Block Bench

2. DIY Pallet Planter Box

3. Terracotta Pot Table

4. DIY Garden Markers

5. Patio Bench Refinishing Project

6. Fairy Garden

7. Easy, DIY Splash Pad

8. Backyard Obstacle Course

9. DIY Pool Noodle Games

10. DIY Rope Swing

11. DIY Container Garden

How to Preserve Your Zucchini Bounty

The Best Ways to Preserve Zucchini What is the goal of every gardener?  That’s right, a successful bountiful harvest!  The next question is what on earth are you going to do with that harvest?  

Squash and specifically zucchini is often a successful crop, with many gardeners begging people to take it away because there is just too much left over. Zucchini is awesome because it really just grows and grows and if you don’t pick it at just the right time, you are going to have some GIANT zucs on your hands!  If you are like many garden enthusiasts, you have tried out just about every way you can think of to So what can you do?  You don’t want it to go to waste do you?  How about preserving it?

That’s right, you can preserve your zucchini for use later in the year! Here are a few of my favorite ways to preserve zucchini:

Zucchini Bread.  Zucchini bread is hands down one of the yummiest ways to eat zucchini!  I love making lots of zucchini bread and freezing it to eat later!  I make both regular zucchini bread as well as chocolate zucchini bread and it’s always a popular treat!  You can freeze the whole cooked loaf of zucchini bread, or you can freeze just the prepared batter.  Pour them into large freezer bags and store them in your freezer to be baked later!

Pickle it.  If you like pickles, one really good way to preserve your zucchini is to pickle it!  Just use your favorite pickle recipe and use zucchini in place of cucumbers and voila’ you have pickles! 

Dry it.  Did you know that you can put zucchini in your food dehydrator?  Seriously, just slice your zucchini up into thin slices and dry it in your dehydrator.  Use the dried zucchini later in recipes, cook in oil or season then and eat like chips!

Freeze it.  Did you know that you can freeze zucchini?  It may seem impossible due to how watery zucchinis are.  If you were to freeze the zucchini whole, it would not work well.  Likely the water would expand and damage the cells of the fruit.  Luckily, there are ways around this.  

  • Use a shredder.  Break out your favorite cheese shredder and go to town shredding the zucchini!  Use a paper towel to pat  some of the excess moisture and then store flat in freezer bags.  It can be used later for use in zucchini bread recipes, pasta sauces or soups and salads.
  • Blanch then bread.  First slice the zucchini, then blanch it to prevent mushiness.   Coat the slices in your favorite breading recipe then freeze.  You can fry these up later.

Refreshing Blackberry Iced Tea

blackberry iced tea recipe

 

This has been my most-viewed post ever!! Thank you to everyone for visiting my lil old blog! 🙂

Spring will soon arrive, which means Summer is coming soon!!  And because I am so desperate for Summer these days, I feel like anytime is the perfect time to get started on your sweet tea drinking.  If you want to add a new, fruity version of sweet tea to your repertoire, check out our favorite tea recipe!

Do you want to cool down with a refreshing, low calorie summertime drink?

We have an overabundance of blackberries on our property so I am always looking for ways to use them! Here is what I did to make this delicious and refreshing beverage:

  • First combine 2 cups of fresh blackberries and 3/4 cup Sugar.  Combine together and either mash or puree in a food processor.  We prefer to taste the fruit pieces in our drink so I simply mash ours with our fruit masher.
  • Mix with 1 gallon of unsweetened Ice Tea (I used Lipton Tea this time, but I also really like it with the Lipton Green Tea)
  • Serve over ice, garnish if desired and enjoy! 

PRINTABLE RECIPE

When I made these, I used Tall Glass Beer Steins, but I have since switched to this awesome Mason Jar Set!  It is so cute for serving tea to guests! There is just something about Iced Tea in a mason jar that makes me smile and think about my time visiting family in the South. 🙂  We have this tea on hand often during the Summer months, but I ALWAYS serve it during our Summertime BBQs and it’s always a hit!  (If you need some tips on throwing an awesome BBQ, check out this post)

 

blackberryicetea

 

Even my husband loves this tea and he is not a tea drinker!

*45 calories per 8 ounce serving.

Yum

Farm Stand Tuna Salad

farm stand tuna salad

I absolutely love Summer time!  I love all of the farm stands that pop up locally and all of the fresh fruits and vegetables that are available.

I picked up some fresh veggies this morning at my local non-GMO farmstand and made myself some fresh Farm Stand Tuna Salad for lunch!

I sliced some cucumbers and tomatoes, mixed in some tuna and added a little dressing and voila’ – Fresh Delicious and healthy salad!

  • 1 Tomato
  • 1 Cucumber
  • 1 can/pouch Tuna fish w/water
  • 2 tbsp Italian Dressing

Mix ingredients together and serve chilled!

Gardman 4-Tier Mini Greenhouse Just $40, Reg. $60!

Do you like growing your own garden?  I love growing my own vegetables at home!  This Gardman 4-Tier Mini Greenhouse is ideal for the gardener with limited space! These are especially great for starting seedlings that you will later transfer to your garden.

For whatever reason, I struggle growing tomatoes. Everything else I can go with no problems, but tomatoes just don’t like me, so I think a Greenhouse like this might be just what I need! Amazon has it marked down to just $40 from its regular price of $59.99!

  • Small greenhouse with 4 shelves for deck, patio, or balcony
  • Ideal for seed propagation and plant growing and display
  • Sturdy shelves for pots and seed trays; plastic cover with full length roll up zipper
  • Dimensions when built: 62 by 27 by 19 inches (h x l x w); each tier is 12-1/2 inches high

Have you ever had your own greenhouse?  Was it successful?

 

Shipping is free as this item is over the $35 Super Saver Shipping amount, but keep in mind that Amazon prices can change without notice.  The prices I have posted are accurate at time of posting.

Add Some Color To Your Garden with These Seed Deals!

I am so excited for gardening season this year!  I am ready to start planting!  Check out these delicious and very colorful veggie seeds that I found on Amazon!

Purple Dragon Carrot 350 Seeds – Absolutely unique! Just $1.20 shipped!

Black Sea Man Tomato 10 Seeds – Heirloom Just $1.10 shipped!

Organic Rainbow Bell Pepper 40 Seeds, 240mg Just $1.30 shipped!

Purple Cauliflower 40 Seeds -LOW CARB!- Veggie Just $1.20 shipped!

Solar Yellow Carrot 150 Seeds – NEW – Veggie Just $1.20 shipped!

 

I love a colorful salad!

Have any of you tried these veggies?