outdoor garden with fire pit
Photo: Linda Oyama Bryan
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4. Add Warmth with the Right Light

George wanted a fire pit that he could see from all over the backyard, so rather than opt for a flat-faced fireplace, he took a cue from the basic campfire. In a corner just off the upper patio, he created a grade-level river-rock-over-gravel "pit" ringed with granite boulders and furnished with a firewood grate for logs. The simple setup gets used year-round; grilling marshmallows has become a traditional Christmas treat. During a daytime event in the summer, Susan might switch out the iron grate for a container of flowers.
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