This gift guide is a direct result of peer pressure on Instagram. This wasn’t on the original list; I only had five gift posts planned, but someone suggested this idea and a surprising number of people were like, “yes, please” so here we are. I do have one more gift guide coming tomorrow and then I’m done. These are fun, but also, I’m too lazy for this much blogging anymore. I feel accomplished with 2-3 posts a month, and this is just too much. I have set the bar too high.
Okay, some background on how this gift guide happened and the title: I love a porch. The minute it’s warm-ish outside, I will spend my mornings on the porch drinking coffee wrapped in a blanket. In the evenings after dinner, I will be on the porch if you need me. When we moved here almost five years ago, we had three porches: two small concrete slabs and one stone back patio. Currently, we still have three porches, they are just much bigger and two of them are now covered.
The small slab off our dining room became—through a remodel—the porch off our kitchen. And the slab that was once completely covered by an overgrown bush became a much bigger porch with a grill and table big enough to hold seven of us. It’s surrounded by lush (in the summer) landscaping and lit with string lights. It became an extension of our kitchen, and we eat as many meals as we can out there.
The back patio—our largest outdoor space when we moved in—got a roof, ceiling fan, and new lights last summer. It’s now a place to lounge when it rains or rest from the sun on a hot day. There’s a picnic table there, along with a couch good for napping and some cozy chairs. In the summer, I work out there as much as possible. My work is easiest with a few computer screens in front of me, but if I’m in a meeting or responding to emails, I’m probably doing it from the back porch.
And now we move on to a paragraph about my third porch. This seems excessive, I agree. It’s also why I got so many requests to do a porch mom gift guide. I know porches.
Our newest porch is the front porch. We broke up the small slab from the uncovered front stoop in the spring, had a much larger slab poured, extended the roof to cover the large porch, and then added ceiling fans, new lights, and a porch swing. I promise, I’m done building or remodeling porches now.
I’m almost ready for the list! Just one more thing! About the “mom” title in this list. You don’t have to have kids to be a porch mom. You can be a plant mom, a dog mom, or a friend mom to enjoy this list. The suggestion came about because I literally live on my porches for 5-6 months of the year and my IG followers know this because I’m obnoxious about it. I tried to come up with a better name, but “porch sitter” felt weird and “porch person” felt creepy. You too, no matter sex, relationship status, or family dynamics, can be a porch mom.
Now, let’s get started. (Some of these are affiliate links!)
Outdoor Rug (link)
This will come up a few times, so I just want to set the record straight right now: my preference for outdoor decor is natural colors that blend in instead of stand out. I don’t want a super colorful outdoor space. I want an outdoor space that matches nature. If you feel differently, great! But this is my list and these are the things that are on my porch so that’s why everything has a neutral or natural feel. I love a good indoor/outdoor rug to anchor a sitting area. My front porch has one, my back porch does not. It makes a space feel cozy so I put one on the porch I sit on in the morning.
Rocking Chairs (link)
I stalked Facebook Marketplace for months to find two used black rocking chairs, so I understand how hard they are to find and how quickly they sell. If your budget allows, grab a set like linked here. I like the wider ones that you can add a pillow or pad to. If you’re feeling really fancy, spring for the Cracker Barrel rocking chairs. And possibly a checkers set, just to complete the look.
Porch Swing (link)
Rocking chairs AND a porch swing? I know. I know. But this is who I am. I’m linking to a really nice porch swing that you can stain or paint, but I feel like this list is a little deceiving because half the stuff on my front porch was thrifted or used. I got my porch swing from my mom’s house. She had one she wasn’t using, so I brought it home, cleaned it up, sanded it a little, and painted it a flat black. Again, I like porch furniture that blends in to the surroundings. Also, did you know rocking or swinging literally helps our brains self-regulate? (Trampolines do this too.) So this is a mental health swing, see if you can buy it with your HSA account.
Outdoor String Lights (link)
Oh look, string lights for an outdoor space. An entirely new idea I just came up with.
Umbrella Planter (link)
Okay, so don’t actually buy this one—it’s ridiculously expensive—but something like it. I thrifted a terracotta one and filled it with succulents from a planter that was overflowing. It filled in over the warm summer months and the size/shape make it perfect for adding a plant to your patio table without taking up too much space that ends up being in the way.
Patio Table and Chairs (link)
This is the table and chairs we have on our kitchen patio. I love it because it matches my other patio furniture and is really comfortable. It’s not cheap, but it’s a good patio set that will last many years so I bit the bullet. The table, which looks like wood, is metal so it doesn’t weather or rot like an actual wood table does. The cushions come off and Home Depot sells inexpensive chair covers for the winter. I used to tear down all our outdoor furniture and store it in the shed or garage for the winter, but adding more square feet to each porch made that impossible this year.
Patio Umbrella (link)
I’ve had the same (bright red floral) table umbrella for a decade. This summer, the holes got big enough that it was time to retire. I asked for an off-white/khaki colored umbrella for Christmas to keep up with the theme of blending into nature. If you know someone who loves spending as much time outside as possible, a new patio table umbrella seems like a weird suggestion, but I’m getting one and I’m delighted about it.
Blackstone Grill (link)
Full disclosure: we have the Sam’s Club version of the Blackstone and highly recommend it. You can buy either one your little heart desires, obviously, but Sam’s Club version will save you a few hundred bucks. We love this grill. We do Sunday brunch on it. I make delicious chicken fried rice on it. Plus, all the other typical grill favorites. Chris got this for Father’s Day two years ago, and we’ve never regretted the purchase. (We do still own a charcoal grill too.)
Also, Chris Graham is getting a few grill accessories for Christmas to up the grill game. This set is fun if you already have one.
Tall Planters (link)
Speaking of Chris Graham, he built me some tall planter boxes like these last summer. I fill them with ferns, and they flank my patio doors. He made some for my mom last year, because she loved them so much. If you can’t get someone to make them for you, the ones I have linked are a great substitute.
Outdoor Pillows (link)
A good porch mom has an excessive amount of two things: pillows and blankets. You can never have too many pillows, inside or out. This is a life philosophy my spouse does not understand, but that doesn’t mean it’s wrong.
See: above, similar life philosophy, the more the merrier.
Plant Hangers (link)
Every spring my favorite local grocery chain will stock giant hanging ferns. I fill my car with them, then hang them on hooks everywhere I can. Never enough hooks. Put these in a porch mom’s stocking.
Hummingbird Feeder (link)
Porch moms love hummingbirds. 1 cup sugar + 4 cups water, boil it, let it cool, then fill your hummingbird feeder. Freak out every single time a little hummingbird stops for a drink. This will never get old.
Bird Feeder (link)
Same with birds. How many bird feeders is too many? Don’t answer that. Just don’t hang them too close to your porch—you want to see them from your porch, but not really close up—because poop.
Wind Chimes (link)
When we were in Iowa over fall break, we ended up at an Amish store where I found wind chimes I loved. That’s saying something because, while I like the idea of wind chimes, I mostly think they’re ugly. But this Amish store in the middle-of-nowhere Iowa had some I loved. I bought them and then, once in the car, realized they were made in Indiana, about an hour from my house. Meant to be.
While we were in North Carolina last year, we visited the Biltmore Estate and toured their gardens. I picked up these wind chimes, in a slightly different color then these, for my yet-to-be-built back porch. When I finally got to hang them up this summer, I was giddy. I love them.
Welcome Mat (link)
Funny or cute welcome mats are great, everyone loves them. For texture, add a larger patterned rug underneath. (Random tip: do you have a Five Below near you? I am morally opposed to junk stores like Five Below, but they have these great 3×5 woven rugs for about $5 and they’re perfect for layering under welcome mats.)
Paint-Your-Own Stepping Stone (link)
We ended up with paint-your-own stepping stones as a lockdown activity. The girls loved doing them, and I loved added them to my landscaping. This is not the exact kit I bought, I can’t find it, but this is the brand. They’ve lasted over a year and only faded slightly.
Okay, so this already completely frivolous and excessive gift guide is now going to go completely off the rails. I know this as I’m writing it. You know this as you’re reading it. Now that we’re all on the same page, let’s proceed.
Carhartt Beanie (link)
Porch moms love to go outside when the weather is a little iffy. It might be a little too breezy, a little too wet, or a little too cold, but a porch mom does not care. She just puts on a stocking cap and braves the elements.
Fluffy Bathrobe (link)
Speaking of “does not care,” porch moms will fearlessly wear their most obnoxious bathrobe on the front porch as their children catch the bus. Again, you don’t have to have children to do this. I have two bathrobes and specific jobs for each of them. I have a longer, gray bathrobe to wear when I’m getting ready to bathe or just done bathing. Very normal behavior. But then I have a shorter, very colorful, two sizes too big bathrobe for mornings. I put it on when I get up, wear it while I drink my coffee, and get the day started. Then I proudly wear it on the front porch as we wait for the bus to come. I would describe this bathrobe as “loud.” But it is so so cozy, and I will be buried in it. (The robe I’ve linked is similar to my funeral robe, but plain black. I wanted you to get the idea without drifting into discomfort and embarrassment. Also, my robe has a hood which I totally recommend. I like to put my hood on and pretend my family can’t see me when they’re being annoying.)
Oversized Coffee Mug (link)
While you’re wearing your robe on the front porch, drink coffee. That’s it. Drink coffee.
Bluetooth Speaker (link)
Chris has a slightly larger version of this bluetooth speaker, and we love it. It gets loud, syncs with no issues, and lasts forever. One day, I might have mounted bluetooth speakers on my back porch, but until then, this will do just fine.
Citronella Candles (link)
No one likes bugs while they’re living their best life on the porch. I haven’t actually tried these yet, but the reviews all say that actually work, so they’re saved in my cart for the spring. You could buy them for me right now as a Christmas gift if you’d like.
Okay, that’s it. Do with this information what you like. Also, I’m sorry.
DISCLOSURE: AFFILIATE LINKS USED