Lesa and Rob Dugas’ dream was to create an oasis to which they could escape without leaving their treasured Peachtree City home. After an extensive backyard renovation, that vision soon became a sweet success, complete with a new swimming pool, grill station, bar, dog walk and several lounging areas. During the transformation, the couple made certain that their favorite gathering spot remained - a circular stone wall fire pit - where many memories were created and celebrated with family and friends over the last six years.
The fire pit is now nestled among lush greenery and natural stone walls, on an elevated platform in the Dugas’ sprawling multi-tiered backyard. On balmy summer evenings, Abelia flowers perfume the air while friendly fire flies lend their light to the fading day. Below, rockers and gliders encircle the hearth while cushions in shades of cream and wheat crown a circular stone bench creating a soothing mix of coziness and comfort. “We wanted to create an escape, a feeling of privacy and warmth,” Lesa smiles as she centers a plush pillow stenciled with the word, “Gather”.
Family and friends gather around a blazing fire during the cooler months to celebrate a birthday or to catch up during an impromptu visit. Rob always takes pride in building the fire, gathering tinder and kindling beneath trees, artfully arranging the natural logs and coaxing the flames into a magical display of red and orange hues. At their grandsons’ request, Lesa and Rob serve up delicious fire-roasted sausages, hot dogs and smoky s'mores, though popping corn at the fire pit has become a new favorite.
On quiet evenings, without guests, the couple of 33 years find themselves irresistibly “called” to the fire pit. Often they’ll assemble a picnic with easy eats - a charcuterie of meats, fruits and cheeses accompanied by a bottle of red vino. “Being around the fire is where we can totally be ourselves and unplug,” Lesa shares, drawing the throw around her shoulders closer. “It’s also a great place to reminisce and dream.” Sometimes, though, the couple sits hand-in-hand in silence, summoned by the hypnotic dance of the flames.