We’ve done it

We’ve become one of those families. One of those “trampoline” families. It was not a planned thing. Since we moved into our house last summer, our yard has sat blissfully empty of any of the typical yard things: playhouse, swings, ride-ons, wading pool. We have a small inflatable pool and the girls have bikes and trikes, but the yard is only adorned by one, small tree:

There really is a small tree in the back there, it’s just very spindly and hard to find. I’d like to take it out (I’m not even sure what kind of tree it is) and put something in more flowery, like magnolia, dogwood or cherry. J is opposed to it. I guess we’ll have to see what “blooms” on this thing this year. It was pretty sad looking last summer.

We’ve talked about getting a shed, installing a clothesline, starting a garden, setting up a compost, buying a playhouse, pouring more concrete patio, and other such yard jargon. But we decided this year to let most of it go (having a baby and all!) and sticking to the essentials (a shed, the patio, and possible a playhouse).

We love to spend time outside when it’s nice – look how beautiful it was this day! Sunshine, birds in the trees behind us, mountains in the distance, hayfields right behind us. We have neighbours on either side whose houses are pretty close, but nobody behind us so it’s a very private and open feeling at the same time.

The problem with putting the girls outside to “go and play” is that they are girls and they need more structure than an open field. Boys would go out there and race and wrestle and find sticks and frogs (yes, frogs!) and things to do. Girls? Not so much. They need things to play with. They have some beach toys, their bikes and trikes, and some mini-sized sports equipment like balls, baseball bat, badminton rackets etc. But they’re only 3 and 5. They can barely throw and catch to each other.

I don’t have any pictures of them, but I have helped them setup tea parties and picnics with their dolls and dishes. That went over pretty well. And when it’s really hot we’ve set up the wading pool or the sprinkler. They are getting a bit more creative, but for awhile there, all they wanted to do was take their beach shovels and dig holes in the dirt.

Not cool for a guy who finally is taking landowner pride in his lawn…

And so, enter the trampoline:

This is the day we set it up. The girls spent literally all day on there. And as you can see, it was cloudy and not very warm. It’s actually been unseasonable cold here for April. But that hasn’t stopped them! J’s brother also came by with his kids. I love this pic because my little nephew is only 1 and clearly doesn’t have the balance of the girls…

The funny thing is, only one of our neighbours had a trampoline, two houses down. But in the last few weeks, two others have gotten them as well. So when you look down the row of backyards, it’s a line of trampolines and bouncing kids, calling to each other, challenging each other to go higher and showing off their. The difference is that our kids are 5 and 3. Some of the others are quite a bit older. Plus two of the other tramps have nets around them and ours doesn’t. Which means people can fall off. Like lil C did the other day – twice.

So now the girls know the rule: if someone falls off, no more for the rest of the day. They are pretty good about staying away from the edge and away from each other. And I’ve been amazed at the exercise they are suddenly getting! Going to bed on tramp days has been great – they are so worn out they fall asleep fast and sleep hard.

I can’t wait for the warmer weather when we can have the hose or sprinkler on it – J remembers that growing up and it sounds like fun!

Fancy a bounce?


5 responses

    • @Rufus: The grass is a hilarious picture because I think it’s the first day we moved in. The yard was like a jungle and my camera was set to “vivid” colour. So it looks amazing and lush and it came up to the kids knees!

  1. Trampolines are great exercise! Our kid’s swimming lessons teachers always commented that they could tell that our kids had a trampoline because their kicks are much stronger. Now our grandkids are using the same trampoline, so it’s really paid for itself.

    • The girls learned a game called “dead girl” from a friend but I’m not sure how they play it. Since they’re only 3 and 5 they mostly just jump and run on it rather than playing games on it. Or they bring toys on it and play that way. Or they go underneath like it’s a fort. Or we put the sprinkler under it when it’s hot.

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