While shopping the garden department at Wal-mart one day I stumbled on to just the solution I needed. This is called a "Grill Canopy" and is meant for shading your grill. It sells for $88.
Now I never thought about my grill needing shade, honestly, but I was craving some for myself and this looked like it would be a good place to start. I brought it home and Sam assembled it and put it up on the deck for me, with the stipulation that securing it from the wind was going to be critical. Here are a couple of views so you can get an idea of the size of it.
It's tall enough to stand up under and the back slants downward, which makes it perfect for my plan!
I picked up a couple of those cheap roll-up blinds from Lowe's and they were on sale for $9 a piece. Awesome! Using just some zip ties, I fastened them on to the west side of the canopy.
I could have used just one large one, but the sun moves (duh!) and I also wanted to be able to pass through easily as my stairs are right there on the west end.
Check it out!
You can see already how much sun it blocks! Hallelujah! You can also see that I added some very ugly sand bags to the base to help secure it during wind. (I'll have to figure out a great way cute those up a little!) Now just add a few plants...
And maybe a water feature......
Maybe some more plants and an over-sized dragonfly....
And now I have a perfect place to sit and relax, drink a glass of wine and just enjoy the shade! Yay!
Linking up to any or all of these fine parties: