We just celebrated the unofficial start of summer, and you\u2019re probably spending more of your free time outside \u2014 family dinners on the patio, socializing with friends, and playing games in the backyard. Do you find yourself looking around and wishing you could create a backyard oasis that you\u2019d be happy to spend more time in? Consider adding one (or more) of these elements to your backyard living and play space to create your own outdoor oasis.\r\n\r\nPergolas are the Perfect Patio Companion\r\nA pergola is the perfect outdoor structure to take a standard backyard patio to the next level.\u00a0If you\u2019re not familiar, a pergola is similar to a pavilion or arbor. It is built on four posts, but instead of a closed roof, a pergola has an open roof covered with a grid of beams and rafters.\r\n\r\nThis open grid is constructed in a way that helps to filter out the rays of the sun above providing shade to the area below. This makes pergolas a natural companion for an open patio space. Use a pergola to cover your entire patio or just a portion to create a defined space.\r\n\r\nWith a pergola, you can also add elements of whimsy to your outdoor oasis by stringing strands of white lights or by planting climbing vines and plants that will surround your pergola with bright colors and smells.\r\n\u00a0\u00a0\r\nGazebos Will Be the Center of Outdoor Entertaining\r\nAre you looking for a place for friends and family to gather for meals, an early morning cup of coffee, or evening cocktails? Then you might want to consider including a gazebo when you\u2019re creating a backyard oasis.\r\n\r\nGazebos add privacy and protection from the elements for your backyard entertaining and, depending on the size you choose, can create an intimate space for two to four people or a large gathering space for events that include the whole family!\r\n\r\nGazebos are designed to be open-air structures, but they can also be upgraded to include screens for protection against insects or with windows that allow you to use your gazebo into\u00a0the fall, even as the air turns crisp.\r\n\r\nFeel Young Again with A Playset\r\nOutdoor play is important for young children, as it not only builds strong bodies but vivid imaginations as well! Your family will have hours of outdoor fun when you add a new playset to your backyard.\r\n\r\nThese aren\u2019t the playsets of your youth that consisted of an aluminum frame, simple belt swings, and hot metal slides. Today\u2019s swing sets have unlimited add-ons with multiple styles of swings,\u00a0slides, climbers, towers, playhouses, and fun accessories. Build your playset with activities that\u00a0are suitable for the ages and abilities of your children now and make additions as they grow.\r\n\r\nPavilion Villas Can Pretty Up Your Pool\r\nFor some people, an in-ground pool is essential in creating a backyard oasis. But with a pool comes pool supplies, pool toys, and wet towels which can create a bit of a backyard eye-sore. Adding a pavilion to your pool area provides a shady space to take a break from the summer sun or a seating area protected from the rainy weather. Upgraded pavilion villas serve a double purpose as they also provide attached interior rooms that can be used for changing rooms or storage for all your pool maintenance supplies and toys.\r\n\r\nWant more inspiration for your dream backyard? Take a look at all of the outdoor structures that you can use to create a beautiful space all your own.