Friday, June 27, 2008

My whole life

I wanted a pool. I got one four years ago when we bought our house. We didn't even realize it was there when we saw the house in December, it was covered in snow and away from the house. It was surrounded with approximately 3 feet of asphalt on all four sides and was fenced, at that time, with chicken wire. The asphalt was filled with pot holes and cracks. It had a diving board and a slide. Our home owners insurance company instructed us to remove the slide and diving board within 7 days of closing. We closed on January 30th. King Daddy, ever the compliant one, removed the diving board and used a sawzall on the slide in freezing temperature 3 days after closing.

We worked hard on the house that winter and soon summer came. I was pregnant with Middle and was very much looking forward to floating in the pool. King Daddy worked a lot that summer and I was often home alone with Oldest. I was too nervous and too pregnant to take her in the pool by myself. We used it a few times that summer, especially KD, he would get home and hit the pool. It is so refreshing when it is unbearably hot.

No picture from summer 2004

The next summer (2005) KD and I installed a new fence, expanded the area around the pool and installed new decking in the form of man made pavers. We rented a jack hammer and our neighbor took all the asphalt away in his back hoe. He provided us with sand. It was great! The deck came out AWESOME! We had a real pool! I landscaped with tall grasses and hanging plants. We bought a table, with an umbrella and chairs.

The next summer (2006) we opened the pool again, by this time I had three children. KD was working more, I had stopped working. Again, I was too nervous to bring all three into the pool by myself. I was so pleased with our pool! The pavers and the plants looked so "professional." I reseeded the grass where we had bald patches.

The next year, last year (2007). It was hot! I was home full time, we had swim lessons at the house, every Friday for the whole summer. Oldest was doing great! Middle would not even put his feet in, so he sat out the lessons. Baby was not a student yet.

The weeds began to overtake the pavers(see below). Some of my grasses began to die and I had long since stopped putting up hanging plants. This was the summer of our first "emergency." Baby slipped and fell right in the pool. KD retrieved him before he could even begin to sputter. I was on the front porch and heard the big splash, that I later learned was KD. We have VERY strict rules about the pool and being inside the pool gate. It seems that is the only time they obey is when we are inside the pool gate.

This pool was installed in the 1970s. It is old. Everything about it is old, including the pump and filter. The "dial" used to change the flow to the lines running in and out of the pool had broken off two summers ago, we were relegated to using pliers. By August of 2007 it was over, the pliers would no longer work. We let the pool turn a horrid green color and closed it up in September. Knowing we would have to spend about a $1,000 in the spring.

KD has repaired the pump and filter and befriended the shop keep at our local pool supply store. He began this odyssey two weeks ago. The weeds are again winning. More of my grasses have died. The filter sand was replaced but the pool remains cloudy. But today, this super hot and humid day, they swam. They swam and had fun. Middle asked KD if he could run and jump into the pool. KD said, "of course you can!" Never in one million years thinking he would do it. Middle got a running start and jumped into the pool. JUMPED INTO THE POOL! Just a month ago he would not even sit on the steps that the hotel pool and now he wants to jump into the pool? By the time I arrived home KD was wearing soaking wet clothes and Middle was huddled on the pool deck. There is no doubt that he will be spending his time on the side of the pool for the rest of the summer.

No picture of pool in 2008, yet.

I began this post wanting to share with you how much I dislike the pool and how funny that is as truly, my whole life I have wanted a pool. But as I write I realized how much fun it is for the kids. In all honestly it only gets better as they get older. We will have a great year with the pool, if only we can get the water cleared up!

p.s. to everyone who offered their advice and words of wisdom on my Mayday post, I thank you. From the bottom of my heart. Every word written has helped me and the kids are doing a little better as are we. Many, many thanks!


Mrs. Parks said...

We bought an above ground pool today to entertain the nieces and nephews.
It's a shame that the work it will take to level the ground to set the pool will end up costing more than the pool itself.
Oh well, we needed something besides sadness to think about.
I'll post a picture of our pool if you post one of yours.

Thank you for your kind words today, I needed them.

The Over-Medicated Housewife said...

Pools come with a lot of heart-ache but fun family in Texas, we would die without one! great blog, love your title.

MissKris said...

I'm a first time visitor coming over from Mrs. Parks' blog and enjoyed my visit very much. I wouldn't mind having a pool but on our 40x150 lot here in the city - Portland, OR - I dunno where we'd put it. In the basement?!? YOURS looks wonderful!

tiff said...

I'm so sorry I have been away for such a long time. Looks like you have had quite a time of it. Hugs. Biggest hugs.

Karen said...

And it's things like that that make me glad that I don't have a pool. We do the inflatable patio version. So much easier to maintain.

Lindsay said...

You're so lucky! I've always wanted a pool, but it'd cost way too much to prepare our property to have one. Weeds or no weeds, yours looks really good! I bet you're going to have a lot of fun this summer :)

KathyLikesPink said...

I, too, have always wanted a pool. I married a guy who says when hell freezes over. He loves to sail but never swims so sees it as nothing but a lot of work.

Since we live on the side of a hill it's probably just as well we don't have one. But I sure envy those who do.

Muffy Willowbrook said...

I say keep the pool.

Use it as a timeline to remember when they feared it, when they challenged themselves and finally when they conquered it.

It's alot of work, I'm sure. But I think your kids will only see it as one of the coolest things they could ever hope to grow up with.

Sue said...

I've always wanted a pool too. In 6th grade, I had to design a house and remember putting an indoor pool in it. Yeah, it was a cool house!

Now, as your kids grow up, your house will be the place to hang out. This is a good thing because at least you will know where your kids are!