Today was a very special day in our family. It was the day we went to Target and picked out the big, inflatable pool that will create hours of fun and endless play opportunities for our children throughout the rest of the summer. Or at least that’s how I thought it should go.

I realize and admit that purchasing a new inflatable pool every year is a complete waste of money, especially since we buy the exact same Swim Center Family Pool each June. The manufacturer clearly states that the user should not use an air compressor to inflate the pool because it could rupture the seams. And that is exactly what happens to ours every year by the end of the summer.

But sometimes, it’s just worth $29.99 to make life simpler. I mean, seriously, how long would it take to blow up a 120-inch pool? And I think it gives my husband great joy to roll up the pool that he has been avoiding with the lawnmower and the object that has been killing his grass all summer and place it by the curb at the end of August.

So, the kids and I bought the pool today and we reviewed our plan to keep the pool clean and fun all summer long. “Wipe the grass off your feet before you get in. Don’t throw rocks in the pool. And absolutely no sand. None. Got it?”

The afternoon started off with cries of laughter from the backyard. But not long into it, I was inside for a few minutes and as I walked by the family room window, I distinctly saw the hands of my middle son wrapped around a red bucket and pouring sand into the pool.

No. This can’t be. All of those long winter days trapped inside, we have been dreaming of this pool. When we were so cold from the ice and snow we couldn’t stand it anymore, we would fantasize about New Pool Day. And now reality had set in.

They were actually carrying buckets of sand from the sandbox and pouring them into the bright green pool with it’s crystal clean water. And I had to be the mom.

“SHE MADE me do it!” Middle M insisted, pointing to his 2-year-old sister. “It’s all her fault!”

So, the children were sent to their rooms. The pool was emptied. The sand toys returned to their sandbox. Until tomorrow.

Post script: After we all recovered from the failed attempt at fun on New Pool Day, the kids asked if they could pick the cherries from our tree. “Cherries? Really?” The previous owners of this house planted quite a variety of fruit trees on our little postage stamp lot in the middle of suburbia. I knew we had a cherry tree, but we had been on vacation for the past week, so I hadn’t been paying attention to its progress. I looked up to see the tree bursting with bright, red cherries! With New Pool Day a distant memory, we all laughed and filled our tummies full on our new holiday, First Cherry Picking Day!

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