From Our Home to Yours

December 22, 2017 Interview, Patio Contractor

Chances are if you are reading this blog right now, you are doing some patio pondering.  So will it be a covered patio or pergola? Outdoor kitchen or dining (or both)?  Maybe a fireplace or perhaps a beautifully lit fire pit?  Stone, granite, paint color … so many things to think about, but your first question should be … why Texas Custom Patios?

Let us help you answer that first!  We are a family-owned and operated business with offices located in Houston and Irving, Texas.  We proudly serve the greater Houston area and parts of Dallas/Fort Worth.  We have completed thousands of outdoor living projects since we opened our patio doors in 2004.

The TCP Difference

We offer personalized service and flexible payment terms, and when you choose to work with us, you’ll work with the same project developer every step of the way.  Start to finish, preliminary design stage all the way to project completion and clean-up.  It’s nice to have one main person that you can really count on each day.

We specialize in providing turnkey design solutions for outdoor living, including patio covers; outdoor kitchens; screened porches; room additions; pergolas and decks; outdoor fire features and so much more!  View our portfolio here to get a better idea of what you would like.

We Stand Behind Our Work

At Texas Custom Patios, we’re confident in our work, and we want you to feel confident, too!  That’s why we offer a two-year warranty for materials and workmanship, and a five-year warranty for structural components of your home improvement project.  We also have one million dollars in liability insurance to protect against accidents and injury.

Exact Quote Promise

When you schedule a consultation with one of our experienced project developers, you’ll receive more than just a ballpark figure.  We’ll tell you exactly how much your outdoor living project will cost – down to the penny!  So many times if you get a bid from multiple builders, they will give you a soft bid to entice you, but the costs add up as the project gets built, leaving you with something much higher than you were promised.   Every estimate of ours includes a detailed drawing with specifications and dimensions, plus rendered views and elevations -so you can see a preview of your completed project!  It’s like your day dreams come to life on paper, making it that much more fun to start building!

The Best of the Best (we always come full circle)

Year after year we are awarded and recognized for being the best in the business.  We constantly receive an A+ from the BBB (read our reviews here), and we are noticed by everyone from the National Association of Home Builders to fans on Houzz.  We love hearing from our customers and sharing the stories of how what we build for them has changed their lives.

We hope you will give us the chance to build a dream for you, but before we do that, let’s get to know us.

 

Meet our Houston team!

 

 Rob Douglass – Partner and Project Developer
Rob is a family man who loves Houston, enjoys the outdoors and watching sports (his superstitions played a big part in the Astros World Series win)!
I was a YMCA Director before starting Texas Custom Patios in 2004.  The thing I enjoy most about TCP is seeing our talented Project Developers take our business in new directions with creative design ideas and problem-solving techniques.  Fun fact… I’m preparing to be a first-time grandfather in 2018!

Katherine Douglass – Managing Partner and Office Manager

Katherine is energetic and loves to laugh!

I love being a part of a company that works with homeowners to create a new and exciting outdoor space at their homes. Fun fact… I have taught dance for more years than I want to admit and have been the Grandmother and Rat King in BalletForte’s Nutcracker for 16 years.
Steven Schell – Partner and Project Developer
Steven has been an expert in outdoor living for most of his adult life.

I love designing unique/functional outdoor spaces and teaching others to do the same! Fun fact… I once broke both arms at the same time.  Ouch!

Ryan Guikema – Project Developer
Ryan has been with TCP for 8 years and helps in the the South/Southeast Houston area.
My background is in Commercial Project Management and Contractor/Retail Sales.  I love the ability we bring to make someone’s backyard dreams a reality.  Fun fact… I’m a musician and am pretty handy in the kitchen… outdoor kitchen that is.
Brian Reed – Project Manager
Brian is a family man and has been married for 17 years and is a proud dad to two sons!
It is great working for TCP because we get to help homeowners bring their backyards from a dream/wish to reality.  Fun fact… I am a huge fan of sports and music.
Chris Clark – Project Developer 
Chris is a retired veteran and has lived in Texas for the last 5 years!
I love being able to create a space that families will enjoy and use to come together.  Fun fact… I love to travel and have been able to visit almost 20 countries and have lived in 6 countries for 6 months or more.
Dean Pyfferoen – Project Developer 
Dean is originally from Wisconsin and is a father of two!
My prior careers were in bridge construction and account management for a construction supply company.  I love seeing a project grow from a drawing to the actual finished product, also I love the people we work with.  Fun fact… I’m a big baseball fan and love hanging by the ocean!
Daniel Vedas – Assistant Project Manager 
Daniel loves to golf, hunt, fish and is a sand volleyball enthusiast.
I come from a project managing background for a low voltage electric company.  I love working with Texas Custom Patios because it gives me the ability to provide people with a quality project, plus I love seeing our projects featured online and in magazines!  Fun fact… I have broken over 10 bones before the age of 30.

Kendall Adams – Office assistant

Kendall is originally from Houston but has also lived on the East & West coasts.  She has four wonderful kids!
I am so thankful for my people, the ones I get to do life with.  I love the great people I get to work with at TCP!  Fun fact… I like to climb mountains, jump hurdles, and enjoy roller coaster rides.
 Brandi Howard – Office Assistant
Brandi is married and has two beautiful daughters.  She grew up in a beach town in Florida, but moved to Texas 25 years ago.
Before working for Texas Custom Patios I was a System Consultant, but joined the TCP family 5 years ago.  It’s fun to be able to talk to clients on the phone to find out their wants and needs of a project and get them set up with a Project Manager.  It’s great to be able to help them get started with that dream project.  Fun fact… My family and I love Disney World.  We generally vacation there once or twice a year.
 If you would like to meet our DFW area team, click here!

Recipes of the Month: Outrageous Eats

December 22, 2017 Outdoor Celebrations, Outdoor Cooking

December’s bad choices bring January’s New Year’s Resolutions.  So before we all decide to jump on the diet/health/workout wagon, what’s one last binge meal(s)?  Below we have collected some of the most insanely calorically crazed recipes.  Some perfect for to bring to your holiday party, others to get cozy on the couch and devour alone!  Don’t just leave Santa boring cookies and milk this year… enjoy and happy eating!

The Donut Burger

Christmas in a Calzone

Grilled Mango and Rum-SoakedPound Cake 

Grilled Doughnuts with Chocolate Glaze

S’more Stuffed French Toast

Nutella and Bacon Stuffed French Toast 

Brie and Blueberry Waffle Grilled Cheese

Loaded Baked Potato Dip and Homemade Chips

Churros Balls with Warm Chocolate Dipping Sauce 

Frozen Snickerdoodle Crunch Cake

Best of 2017: Texas Custom Patios

December 22, 2017 Project of the Month

Each month we feature one of our most gorgeous projects, whether it be a covered patio or an outdoor kitchen with a stunning fire feature, contemporary or traditional … we give you a glimpse of a highlighted completed project!  These projects were built in the greater Houston area and the Dallas/Fort Worth area.  Let’s take a look back at the projects that really stood out for 2017.

 

 

Click the month below for a link to full details re: that particular project.

January

February

March

April

May 

June

July

August

September

October

November 

December

 

Holiday Hacks

November 30, 2017 Outdoor Celebrations

The hustle and bustle of the season can leave you saying, “No NO NO” instead of HO HO HO!  We found some easy tips and tricks to get you through the season with holiday cheer!  

Rule #1 – Take it easy on yourself, you create perfection in your mind.  Don’t spend endless hours on something someone else will not even notice!  That’s the only rule, easy right?  Now we have some tips, tricks and holiday hacks!

Decor

Decorate with LED battery operated lights.  They will last forever, you don’t have to worry about a plug and they look so cool!  You can group them inside empty wine bottles, canisters, or our favorite idea, drape them around fire wood!  You get the look of the light in a fire without the mess or the hazard!

Turn your patio into a winter wonderland with these easy and cheap little lanterns.  Fill a little mason jar  1/4 way up with Epsom salt or rock salt, and add a little candle or tea light on top.  Light them and glow!

You can do a lot with little clear jars, fill them with rock salt at the bottom, top with cranberries and sprigs from your Christmas tree.  It’s such a cute affordable way to be festive!

Decorate your windows with snowflakes with hot glue!  Take your glue gun directly to the window and with thin lines create your snowflake.  The best part is when it’s ready come down, it peels right off!

Get out your glue gun again…

Take your pool noodle right from the pool to our outdoor fireplace.  Simply shape the pool noodle in the a the shape of a wreath and connect it with duct tape.  Hot glue glass ornaments to the frontside if the noodle, wrap a pretty bow around the top and hang!

Food

Create Christmas cubes by freezing cranberries in an ice tray!  It will look fest and gorgeous in a glass of bubbles!

Glue mini candy canes together upside down. Place name tags of food inside them so everyone knows what dish they are enjoying.

Organized

Place all your wrapping paper in a garment bag for easy storage and clutter free gift wrapping!

Avoid a tangled mess with the endless strings lights by simply wrapping them around a plastic hanger.  They will lay flat to be stored instead of a bulky disaster.

Gifts

Use your leftover paint samples from redoing lil’ Johny’s room, to create DIY gift tags!  Cut into little trees, a snowman, wreathes, you name it!

Patio Party

Have a hot cocoa and dessert bar with your neighbors!  Melt the chocolate for your desserts in a mason jar, set in a slow cooker on low.  This will keep everything warm and gooey for your guests all at once!

Who doesn’t love s’mores… Stay roasty, toasty by the fire without all of the mess.  You can still roast the marshmallows in your fire pit, but instead of using hunks of chocolate, simply spread Nutella on the graham cracker as your chocolate.

Happy holiday hacks!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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more!!!!

What’s Our Specialty?

November 28, 2017 Interview, Outdoor Living

After 20 years as a non-profit executive director for the YMCA, with a lot of facility responsibilities, Rob Douglass was ready for a change.  “My wife Katherine and I both grew up in Houston , then went away for college and career building.  A few years later, when we moved back to Fort Bend County in southwest Houston, there were all these new homes springing up in one of the fastest growing areas in the country.

There was one word they thought all those homeowners needed more of… SHADE!  This is where Texas Custom Patios was born.  For the rest of the story and more on our specialty, read here!

 

Easiest Ever Christmas Cookie Recipes

November 28, 2017 Outdoor Cooking

The holidays are meant for giving and spending time with your family and friends.  Tis’ the season for sweets, too!  Put the two together and make some memories in the kitchen with these easy holiday cookie recipes we found on Southern Living.  Your neighbors will love you (even more)!

Bourbon-Pecan-Gingerbread Cookies

Crunchy Frostbite Cookies

Spiced Molasses Drops

No-bake Chocolate Mint Snowballs

Chocolate Peppermint Crackle Cookies

Red Velvet Sandwich Cookies

Chocolate Chunk Mocha Cookies

Crispy Praline Cookies

Cranberry-White Chocolate Chip Cookies

Cranberry-Orange Shortbread Cookies

Almond Snowballs

Are you hungry yet?

Those are just a few, get the recipe for all 25 here… Get to bakin’! 

 

 

 

Festive Fun On The Patio

October 28, 2017 Outdoor Celebrations

Getting in the holiday spirit for any occasion  can be both fun inside and outside!  Get inspiration from this neat video we found by Southern Living.  Click the video below!

And no Halloween party is complete without some spooky snacks! Click the image below for 10 freaky recipes! 

And complete your haunted Halloween with some cool pumpkin carving ideas!

 

 

Recipe of the Month: Grilled… Dinner, Sides & Desserts

October 27, 2017 Outdoor Cooking

Slow Cooker Beef Stew on the Grill

Ingredients

2­3 lb. chuck roast (cut in bite size chunks)

1 large white onion (chopped)

6 whole carrots (chopped)

6 celery stalks (chopped)

3 cups kernel corn

12 large white mushrooms (chopped)

6 medium baking potatoes (chopped)

4 cloves garlic (minced)

1 package brown gravy mix

1 package au jus mix

2 1/2 cups water

3 tbsp. corn starch

Salt Pepper

Slow Cooked Beef Stew

Serves 10 ­12

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours

Here’s hearty and savory blend of beef and vegetables that’s sure to warm you up on a chilly day. If you haven’t used a Dutch oven in the past you’re in for a treat. Leave uncovered for the first 30 minutes to infuse a mild, smoky flavor to the stew. Serve with fresh warm bread and butter.

Directions

Set up the grill for indirect cooking and heat to 300°F (149°C). In the 7 quart Dutch oven, add 2 cups of water, stir in the gravy and au jus mixes. Add all the ingredients (except the corn starch). Salt and pepper to taste. Fold with a large spoon to mix the ingredients. Place the Dutch oven uncovered in the grill and allow to cook for 30 minutes (to add smoky flavor). Cover and allow to simmer for 3­4 hours. Mix the corn starch with 1/2 cup of water and whisk until thoroughly blended. Add to Dutch oven and fold ingredients. Allow stew to simmer for another 30 minutes. Serve immediately with warm bread and butter.

Grilled Rosemary Sweet Potato Fries

Ingredients

2 lbs. medium­ sized yams

3 tbsp. unsalted butter

1/4 cup good­ quality maple syrup

2 tsp. Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, minced

Salt

Pepper

Grilled Rosemary Sweet Potato Fries

Serves 4

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Sweet potatoes have gained popularity as the new french fry. These smoky sweet potato wedges are the perfect complement to any burger or steak dish.

Directions

Place the yams in a pot of cold water; add 1 tbsp. of salt. Cook until the potatoes are just tender when pierced with a knife, about 15 minutes. You can also microwave the yams whole, until just tender. Let cool slightly, and then cut each yam into four or six 1/2­in. thick wedges (depending on the size of the yam). Combine the butter, maple syrup, Dijon mustard and rosemary in a small sauce-pot. Season the mixture with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, then remove from the heat. Heat your Twin Eagles Grill to high heat. Brush the yam wedges with the butter mixture and season with salt and pepper. Grill the wedges until lightly golden brown, turning often, about 5 minutes. Remove to a platter and drizzle with remaining butter mixture.  Serve hot.

Grilled Corn on the Cob with Chipotle Maple Glaze

Ingredients

2 chipotle chilies, from a can of chipotles in adobo sauce

2/3 cup maple syrup

1/2 stick (2 oz.) unsalted butter

1 clove garlic

Salt

Pepper

8 ears of corn, husks pulled back and cleaned

Grilled Corn on The Cob With Maple Chipotle Glaze

Serves 8

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

The smoky heat of chipotles and the sweetness of maple syrup are absolutely delicious when combined with the flavor of grilled corn.

Directions

Finely chop the chilies, using a food processor or by hand. Place the minced chilies in a small saucepan along with the maple syrup, butter and garlic. Season liberally with salt and pepper. Place the pan over medium heat and bring to a boil, stirring often. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes, or until slightly thickened. Remove the glaze from the heat and let rest at room temperature. Preheat your Twin Eagles Grill to medium heat. Rinse the cleaned ears of corn with water and place them directly on the grill. Grill, turning often, until tender and slightly charred in spots, about 10 minutes. Brush the corn with the glaze and continue to grill for about 5 minutes more, turning often.

 

Fire Roasted Cherry Cheesecake

Ingredients

Crust 1/2 cup butter, cubed

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1½ cups gluten free allpurpose flour mix

1/2 cup cocoa powder

pinch of salt

Fire Roasted Cherry Topping

1 lb. fresh black or red cherries, (or 1 bag of frozen cherries)

1 tbsp. melted coconut oil

pinch of sugar

1/4 cup water

2 tbsp. brown sugar or maple syrup

pinch of cinnamon

Cheesecake

2 (8 oz.) packages of cream cheese

(250 g packages or 1 cup each)

Fire Roasted Cherry Cheesecake

Serves 10

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Fire Roasted Cherry Cheesecake is another cheesecake to add to our growing collection of cheesecake recipes.  This cheesecake is completely gluten free, and totally awesome! Try it yourself.

Directions

Preheat your grill to 375°F, preparing for indirect grilling. Line a sheet pan with foil and spread the cherries on it, drizzle with coconut oil and sprinkle with sugar. Grill over indirect heat while the grill is preheating, (and while you make the crust and cheesecake,) between 15 and 25 minutes. Once they’re split, juicing and bubbly, remove the cherries from grill and transfer them to a saucepan. Set aside. Bring the cream cheese to room temperature while you make the crust. Using a stand mixer, or by hand, cream together the butter and sugar for the crust. Add the flour and cocoa powder, using a pastry cutter or two butter knives to cut the sugar mixture in to the flour and cocoa powder until you have a crumbly mixture that will stay together when pressed. Cut the cream cheese into squares. Blend them with the sugar, flour, and vanilla, using a hand or stand mixer. Add the eggs and yogurt, beating on low, until smooth. Warm the cream until steaming. Pour the cream over the chocolate chunks, stirring until melted. If the chocolate doesn’t all melt, use the microwave in short 15­ second bursts until everything is melted.

2/2 1 cup Greek yogurt, plain, vanilla or cherry 1 cup sugar 2 tbsp. gluten free all purpose flour 1 tsp. vanilla 2 eggs 1 cup solid dark chocolate, broken into small chunks 1/4 cup of cream Pour the filling into the crust lined pan. Swirl in about half of the dark chocolate. Bake at 350°F for approximately 45 minutes. You can test the doneness of your cheesecake by carefully jiggling it. If the center‐inch still moves like jello, you’re ready to pull it out. Cool in the pan for about 15 minutes, then remove the sides of the pan and cool another 15 minutes. You can serve still warm, or chill for at least an hour. Do not put it in the freezer. While waiting for the cheesecake to cool, add the water, sugar, and cinnamon to the cherries. Bring them to a simmer. Allow to cool, or keep warm. When you’re ready to serve, top the whole cheesecake with the fire roasted cherry mix

Have a project in mind? We work throughout the Houston and Dallas - Fort Worth areas.

Our Customers Love Us

We worked with Mark, who came to us with plans and fully explained the costs, materials, timeline, and talked about the construction methods. The project was well organized, with a new crew arriving once each stage of construction was completed. I kept a photo record of it, which was fun and friends are wowed by the timeline. I completely recommend Texas Custom Patios.

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