The Outdoor Living Guy – Thriving in Nature

Did you know that people who make the effort to spend time in Nature are happier, healthier and less stressed? This pretty much sums up how, ‘The Outdoor Living Guy,’ Micah Dennis feels about it too. The ‘Outdoors’ is his friend, an equalizer that asks for Nothing and gives Everything in return. It took him awhile to realize he thrived in nature. And that’s what this blog is about…  how Micah Dennis found his nature-groove.

And so this story begins, about a boy, his mower and his love for the outdoors.


Micah didn’t have a childhood filled with camping trips, a big lawn with tree fort, or a hiking heritage. He, like so many, grew up in a concrete jungle where there might have been a few cabin & beach trips along the way . . . but overall, Micah’s exposure to the elements was limited to his urban environment.

That is until he began ‘walking in nature’ behind a mower and felt a connection. He began to appreciate all of it, from the trees and grass and flowers to the prevailing peace in the midst of life’s chaos.

Have you ever mowed a lawn? It’s one of those things people do by themselves but never talk about much. As you go back and forth, striping the lawn with a crisp cut, you feel good. You smell the fresh green grass. You daydream.

Along the way and many daydreams later, Micah developed the impetus to grow a simple lawn maintenance route into an “all inclusive” landscape design company . . . Premier Backyard Living Landscaping & Exterior Design. At this stories telling, Micah & Team Paradise recently signed off on this incredible ‘Tropical Paradise’ landscape.

This is what mowing lawns can achieve . . . Who, knew?

Whoops, I jumped ahead a bit, eh?  Like a good book, you don’t start by reading the ending . . .


As the law of attraction would have it, Micah’s magnetic personality became drawn to another intense magnetic field, his future wife’s!  Desiree. Who would have thought they’d both have green thumbs? But they did. She a plant & flower genius whose beds are brimming first sign of spring; him, an artistic eye for space and flow in landscape Design.

Micah was heard to say recently how he’d never realized how in-tune-with-nature they both were when they transformed the yard of their first little rental home. Or was it a yard? More like overgrown weeds & brush. Working together they restored their first landscape paradise. Not long thereafter, they bought a home where Micah connected with his artist roots to create another backyard paradise. Seems as if a seed had been planted. When clients began to ask how they could improve their outdoor space, Micah shared his knowledge & ideas. And so, seeds took root and began to grow.

Oops, let’s not forget an important part of the family tree, their two children, Alyvia and Xander. Shown below, this family enjoys outdoor living. But wait, a revision to their outdoor kitchen & living area is in the works? Do these two ever stop improving their outdoor living space? Nope. Take a quick look-see into Lance Ct. This was their first design for this property and they loved it for a couple of years. Then the family went pool-crazy and decided to add an amazing poolscape – shown under Nicole Ct & Pool Party.  We’ve never seen a family who lived in a space more than these guys! Maybe that’s why people call Micah, “The Outdoor Living Guy.” (Notice Xander sitting in the empty pool under construction)


Micah became an expert in outdoor living not only because he likes being outdoors, he can see it in his mind’s eye, visualizing the best outdoor space it can be. Many might wonder why he’s updating his landscape again. Easy, when he’s home, he heads outdoors. His family joins him. After work or on weekends, why not head outside and enjoy the sounds of nature? What an incredible reverie if we take the time to bask in the ambiance. Remember some of these nature sounds? This video is a short 3 minutes or you can enjoy some of these sounds in your own backyard.


Funny, if you ask Micah about why he loves nature, he’ll say his memories of those simple outside activities like hide-&-seek, building forts, hot-tubs, saunas, and his dog, Cody. Those memories made a solid connection. Micah also loves traveling to different lands. Visiting in & around different countrysides is one of his favorite things to do. (Huh, whose isn’t?) Tropical environments, ancient ruins, wine country. . . a plethora of naturescapes to be inspired by.

Once more, Micah realizes, the best times of his life have been outdoors.


It’s crucial to Micah to drive home the importance of spending time outdoors. How many countless articles have been written about it? Everyone is walking around with heads down, staring at cell phones. In restaurants, couples enjoy their phones instead of each other. At family dinnertime, parent-neglect via cell phone abuse is dominating dining rooms. From sunup to sundown, people are failing to connect to one another, to their lives, and to themselves. Simple solution: Go Outside! Swim, spa soak, stare into a fire under a starlit night . . . let nature saturate every pore with it’s healing properties. Engage with your friends and loved ones. Get those knots out of your shoulders as you relax. Do it now . . . break the pattern. The article below is from June 5, 2018 and does some good scolding on this very subject.

Stressed Out? Go Outside, and Go Alone

Spending time by yourself in nature is good for mental health, and can make you a better leader. 

Naturally occurring periods of solitude and silence that were once commonplace have been squeezed out of our lives. Some equate solitude with loneliness, and yet, there is a big difference between being lonely and being alone.

Studies show that people benefit both from the outdoor settings and from the experience of being alone. . . . demonstrating the value of spending time in nature.

Solitary reflection enhances recognition and appreciation of key personal relationships, encourages reorganization of life priorities, and increases appreciation for alone time and silence.



Micah Dennis, ‘The Outdoor Living Guy’ thrives on Nature – his constant companion. He is on the move, driving ’round Portland, giving his two cents worth to homeowners about Outdoor Living spaces. Yep, that’s him, the one with a Drone as a side-kick. See him on U-tube this summer.

When Micah arrives home, he’s hightails it to the backyard for relaxation with his family. Okay, well maybe he plays one or two sweet games of cribbage with some buddies who drop in. (pools are friend-magnets)

Follow Micah in “Tales from a Landscape Truck,” “Before & After Landscape Design,” “How To, Should Do – Design Build,” . . . his new vlogging series as  The Outdoor Living Guy on U-Tube. You’ll be right with him as he vlogs in properties around Portland. You’ll see start to finish projects, client feedback, crews in action and useful info for your own Backyard Living.

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Until next time . . . Get Outside Portland!

Kim Thibodeau, Exterior Design Services

Landscape Blogger


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