We have a swimming pool….
I love the pool…..
Hubby, not so much….
It was all me that pushed for having a pool. My argument that I used….We live in the middle of nowhere. There is nothing for kids to do. When they have nothing to do, trouble happens. I also want our house to be the place were friends want to come to. I want to make it the hangout spot. Why?…..because I want to know who my kids are friends with and I want to know what they are up to.
I just want to keep them safe. By keeping them close and knowing who their friends are, I might have a better chance.
Right now they are young, but before I know it, I will have teenagers. Our house will be full of children for many years. There is a ten year age difference from oldest to youngest. That leads to many years of parental vigilence on my part.
This will be our third season for the pool. We constructed it in stages. The first year was the fiberglass pool, fencing, equipment (including heater), and concrete apron. The second year was the pavers, fire pit, and tanning ledge/baby pool which waterfalls into the main pool. This year was an upgrade on pump, filter, and safety cover.
Hubby calls it the money pit. I admit that he is right, just this once.
It has not increased the value of our home. It has cost much more than we budgeted for. And it may have made it more difficult to sell our home if we were ever to move.
I think it looks beautiful, its fun to play in, perfect for cooling down, a great gathering area, and my little oasis right at home.
Mr. D hangs out in the baby pool while Ms. A and her friends have the main pool. I just float around on my chair enjoying it all.
One of the best thing I did, was start with some great pool rules.
1. Open pool time for friends is 1-4.
(this means I don’t have to provide lunch or dinner for the whole neighborhood)
2. Kids can only be in the pool or on the pool deck if there is an adult present.
(lucky for me our babysitter is also a certified lifeguard)
3. Bathroom breaks are required every hour.
4. Everything played with must be put up at the end of the day.
(to many kids fall in, when reaching for a toy that is floating in the water)
5. Non swimmers must wear a vest. No discussion!
6. No dogs in the pool.
(I found out there were drownings due to pets climbing on and pushing kids under.)
These rules seem to work and I find that they make living with a pool enjoyable.
Since Hubby always refers to the “money pit” as mine. I am responsible for cleaning and maintaining it. After the first month of ownership, the daily sweeping and skimming got old, so I asked for a robot cleaner for Mother’s Day. Like everything else in our house, our robot has a name…. Skippy. After breakfast, I just throw Skippy in and by lunch he has everything cleaned up. I take his bag out and hose it off and he is all set for the next day. The only tricky part of cleaning is the skimmer box. It’s a box on the side of the pool were all the water goes through to get to the heater, filter, and pump. This box has a basket that needs emptying. Usually you have leaves and a random pool toy. But on some occasions there are surprises…..huge spiders, frogs, field mice…ugh.
No use in calling Hubby….it’s my pool and my problem to deal with. Nala always has her nose inches away, waiting to see what I bring up. I have attached a longer handle to the basket and I try not to squeal/scream to much when one of these surprise occur. Only once did the neighbor’s free range chickens visit the pool. I sent Nala after them and they haven’t been back since.
I can manage, at least I think I can.
Some of the great features that I included in the design of my oasis….the pool is sanitized using a cooper system. It uses minimal chlorine and makes the water soft, scent free, and crystal clear. There are umbrella stands sunk into the concrete apron in various spots to provide shade while you are in the pool. The fire pit is gas, so no smoke or ashes will fly in your face or burn holes into the pool cover. The pool contains a swim up ledge the entire length of the deep end. This makes it very easy to climb out of the deep end. Lastly, the baby pool which is ten inches deep, can be transformed into a water feature with two fountain heads.
I love my pool. We open it very early in the season, usually by the first week of April and we close it for Halloween weekend. We have a heater and a solar cover. We are able to maintain a warm temperature and enjoy it for an extended swim season. The kids have become little fish and have great fun playing all sorts of games with each other and friends.
Yes, it is a money pit.
Yes, there is constant cleaning and maintenance.
Yes, I am aware of the safety issues (we have locking gates and alarms on all the doors).
Yes, there is a constant flow of people at our house……Exactly what I want. I have been able to meet Ms. A’s friends and their parents. I have gotten to know our neighbors quite well.
April is here. The pool is open. The weather is frightfully cold. The heater is cranked up. We are soooo ready to jump in!