How to Have the Perfect Sunday

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Your weekend routine can be pretty predictable. On Friday, you're celebrating the week's end or crashing early to catch up on sleep. By Saturday, you're running errands, cleaning and generally doing everything you didn't have time for during the week. Come Sunday, phew — Sunday is your day. But how do you make it count? Sometimes, it's hard to slow down for one day when the rest of your week never stops. To help you make the most of this 24-hour break, we've compiled a step-by-step guide so you can have the perfect Sunday, every Sunday. From eating warm croissants and lounging in the morning to sipping sangria by a bonfire in the evening, the last day of the week should feel like a calming escape. Let "Sunday Funday" begin.

(Image: eHow)

Start With a Buttery, Sweet Morning

You wake up, you stretch out and you pause to decide if you want to snuggle back into your blankets for that extended sleep time you ache for during the week. But before you decide, you think about freshly baked croissants. Whether you're waking to croissants or making them yourself, they're a golden start to a perfect Sunday.

(Image: Thalia Ho)

Enjoy the Early Hours by Lounging in the Backyard

Once you've gotten your fill of breakfast, it's time to lounge. And on a Sunday, the best place for morning lounging is in the backyard on your comfy-cozy hammock. Making a free-standing hammock stand will bring you hours of quality lounge time before and after lunch. Once it's built, all you need is a book and a wide-open Sunday.

(Image: Julia Fain)

Make Time for Your Playful Side

After a quiet morning to yourself, you might invite some friends over for a fun-filled afternoon. Create a nice balance between relaxing and playing outdoor games by making your own giant wooden dominoes for everyone to enjoy.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

Make a Cool Afternoon Snack

To break up the games a bit, serve an appetizer that's both tasty and refreshing. Ceviche makes for a great al fresco snack: it's light enough to be an appetizer, but filling enough to keep energies high. You can also customize it, depending on preference or dietary restrictions.

(Image: Jackie Dodd)

Bring Soft Light to Your Sunday Evening

We usually think of mood lighting as an indoor trick, but you can use it in the backyard, too. When it starts to get dark, some properly-placed tiki lights can not only help you and your friends keep the games going, but they can also set a calming mood that's perfect for a lazy Sunday.

(Image: Jonathan Fong)

By Now, It's a Steak-Worthy Sunday

Now that you've created such a solid Sunday morning and afternoon, you'll want a dinner that keeps the perfection coming. Take advantage of twilight and stay out back to grill skirt steak topped with spicy chile sauce for a delicious Sunday dinner.

(Image: April Anderson)

Balance Your Steak With a Healthy Side Dish

While you've got the grill going, throw some veggies on for a balanced and tasty meal. To mix up the flavors and textures of dinner, make grilled sweet potatoes that are done whichever way suits your Sunday best.

(Image: Jennifer Farley)

If Your Sunday's Steak-Worthy, It's Probably Sangria-Worthy, Too

If grilled steak is the ultimate Sunday main course, then sangria is the day's favorite beverage. Learn how to make a refreshingly crisp and fruity red wine sangria on Saturday, so you can prep it the night before and leave it in the fridge until dinnertime.

(Image: Jackie Dodd)

Make It Really Easy to Eat Outside

When dinner and drinks are ready and the sun is going down, that's no time to head inside for a meal in the dining room. Enjoy the rest of your Sunday evening outside, and get a serving assist from your own rustic industrial bar cart . Place it by the dinner table for easy-to-reach refreshments.

(Image: Sarah Dorsey)

Create a Gathering Place to End the Night

What's the best way to end your perfect Sunday? Why, around a fire with good friends and delicious food, of course. If you don't have a fire pit in your backyard, you can easily make a fire pit out of bricks as a Saturday project. It'll be ready in time for your perfect Sunday, and every other perfect Sunday to come.

(Image: Machelle Vanderhoeven)

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