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Creating an Outdoor Oasis #Vancouver & #Calgary #SummerwithSears Plus a $25 Sears #Giveaway US only 07/27

After a long winter, and knowing that our summers are short here, Canadians want to get outside as soon as possible—and enjoy their backyards. Backyards are really an extension of the home for many families. I know that many of my friends growing up spent most of the summer outside in their backyards, and that carried on to when they had their own houses, too.


I have always wanted to put a small bridge going over a pond (perhaps with Koi fish swimming in it) in my backyard. As well, I’ve always wanted a lovely brick pizza oven and tandoor. Really, along with relaxing, I would want to spend my time cooking in my backyard—and I don’t just mean on a barbecue! In terms of styles, I would choose a neutral colour scheme with splashes of red in cushions and decorative items.

(above photos taken by me)

I prefer natural materials over plastic, so we bought a wooden table and chair set and also a wooden bench. These are pieces that would work for a balcony, for sure. My mom’s backyard is undergoing some major changes as it is being re-leveled. Perhaps later in the season we’ll be able to make the backyard more close to the oasis we envision.

Considerations for choosing the perfect elements for a Backyard Oasis:


I’ve lived in 2 Canadian cities in my life— and Vancouver. There are several key differences between the cities in terms of space. One major difference is the amount of space available.

I’ve been able to have a small balcony in most of my Vancouver apartments. Because the space inside is so limited, Vancouverites like to make the most of the extra balcony space by extending their living space. You’ll often find a small table and chairs or a bench with cushions, rather than a barbecue. With a small balcony, which is more common than the spacious backyards which everyone has in Calgary, every piece counts that much more.

There are people who own houses in Vancouver —and you better bet that those who can afford to do so better take care of their yards in order to not have the entire neighbourhood hate them! The benefit of all the rain is that the backyard is luscious and green.


While some of my friends and blog readers in the USA mainly have to worry about their backyard fabrics being able to withstand the heat and direct sunlight (so colour fast materials are absolutely necessary), up here in Canada we have other concerns. We’re at the end of June now, but it has been raining almost daily in Calgary. Rain is also a concern in Vancouver—though not during the summer so much as the other 9 months of the year.

When thinking about storage of outdoor products, the snow and cold in Calgary needs to be considered —so, quality, weather proof products are a must!

This bistro table and chair set would be great for a small space, like a balcony—or, as is the case for my backyard oasis, tucked away, perhaps down a path for privacy.


I’m someone who likes to change up the look of my interiors and exteriors seasonally. The way to do this without having to fully replace everything each year is to choose the major pieces, like furniture in a neutral colour palette with accents in different colours or patterns. Being an outdoor space, one can always change up the look of the backyard space with different plants and flowers, for a completely different look, too.

The Halston series by Ty Pennington is classic and contemporary—perfect for a Vancouver balcony or backyard. I like the cushion accents, which can easily be changed out seasonally.

(above 2 photos from

Now that I have shared with you what I’d love to have in my backyard and discussed what to consider before creating a perfect summer oasis,I want to know what you’ve done to transform your backyard into your oasis.

** One of my lucky readers will win a $25 Sears gift card!**

Need help finding your own pieces for your backyard? Sears is bringing the ease of searching for those perfect pieces with their recently launched iPad digital catalog. On your computer? Don’t worry, we have you covered with Sears’ amazing digital catalog built just for you!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Sears. The opinions and text are all mine. Official Sweepstakes Rules.

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