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eliza4one's Message:

Water was a very important part of our summers growing up in a small town in KS!

Our small town had a large swimming pool! We were so lucky!

We were required to take swimming lessons from an early age (which we hated because the water was cold in the morning!). However, it was worth it because once we learned how to swim and passed the test that the swimming pool required, my siblings and I were allowed to walk to/from the pool all by ourselves. Every. single. day. was spent at the pool! From about 12:00-4:00! Sometimes later! Loved it!

When we were younger, we would run through the sprinklers! We had a huge yard with sprinklers that sprayed upwards, throughout the entire yard. We would pretend we were in the ocean, as as "swam" through the entire yard of sprinklers!

Wheelbarrows were also filled with water and we would splash around in those, as well.

So many good summer memories!

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Discussion Review (newest messages first)
Kate26 07-21-2017 09:36 PM

Our boat gliding through the water
Up and down in the waves
Making for a fabulous day!
No motor, quiet, no sound
Wind billowing the sails
to the perfect shape.
All of a sudden, a dolphin is found!
Behind the aft, a blow hole I hear,
Soon there are two then three
Off the starboard, a whole pod
Leaps and dives and then they swim off.
Our boat with us sails on
Making more summer memories.

Suzanne 07-18-2017 12:35 PM

Like many other posters, most of my summer fun memories had something to do with lakes, oceans or pools.

One of my most fond memories was when we picnicked at a local state park. During the day my mom and siblings would prepare salads, hamburgers and the rest of the fixings and pack a cooler. Once dad came home from work we would hop in our Dodge Dart and head to the lake and have the very very best dinner, followed by a swim in the lake.

One other favorite memory was traveling to Cape Cod with my family each year. We would rent a cottage by the ocean (I still wonder how my folks could afford it) and just have the very best time. I continue this tradition with my husband, brother and sister-in-law and their kids. In fact, we're leaving tomorrow! Can't wait!


choppie70 07-18-2017 05:56 AM

We live in a "Lakes Region" so we have always been around water. Growing up my dad always had a boat. It was usually a used boat that my parents found pretty cheap. The boats would always break down the third or fourth time we used it. We saved up as a family for over a year (cans/bottle redemption, spare change, dad quit smoking!) to get a brand new boat.

The first time we took the boat onto the lake it wouldn't start. Dad got more and more frustrated as we drifted further and further from the boat launch. Finally in desperation he asked us, "how do you like my $10K fu*king canoe! Grab a paddle" We had to paddle the boat back to the launch.

Dad forgot to add the correct mixture of oil/gas to the motor for first time use. After we got that settled we have a wonderful day on the lake! We were able to make it to the small island on the lake that has black sand.

Editor 07-17-2017 09:33 PM

I really enjoy swimming today, but as a child I didn't like swimming lessons at all. Going to the public pool in the early morning and lining up by the side of the pool, shivering and looking down at my toes. A line of little toes and shivering children. Then, one by one, we were told to jump in the water. I particularly did not like to put my face in the water. Blowing bubbles and counting fingers with eyes open and no swimming goggles was no fun. I remember holding the side of the pool and kicking and blowing bubbles and closing my eyes because the chlorine stung. I was a kid who didn't like putting my face in the water - a tadpole.

Thanks everyone for sharing your fun with water memories! Enjoy reading!

Here is the lucky winner of our drawing. The winner will receive a $25 gift certificate!



winner of the random drawing!
Thanks again to everyone who shared!

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pdxteacher 07-17-2017 07:11 PM

As kids, my sister and I got to spend a week with our grandparents every summer. They lived in a tiny little town where everyone knew us, even though we had no idea who they were. Every afternoon my grandpa would load the inner tubes into the truck and drive us to the river. We'd float down the river and talk about all sorts of things you can only talk about with someone who loves you but is not your parent. It's one of my most treasured memories. Grandma would pick us all up at the end and we'd go to the A&W for root beer floats.

cemsnowy4 07-17-2017 06:12 PM

Summer time was always lots of fun swimming in my pool on hot days. Me and a bunch of friends would soak up the Rays from the sun using baby oil. Boy have times change.

Evrmoi21 07-17-2017 04:43 PM

We started taking our children to the pool very early in their lives. I remember when DS was about a year old he was absolutely fearless in and around the pool -- DH used to enjoy showing him off to other parents in the parent and tot swimming class by having DS jump into the water on his own. But I found out that my fearless boy was afraid of one thing -- male swimming instructors. He loved the ladies, was all smiles and flirty eyes (even at only 12 months old). But one session we had a male instructor -- if he approached DS and I or DH he would cling tightly and begin to cry. As soon as the instructor went to talk to another parent DS was back to being all smiles. After a couple of weeks, his fear lessened and the instructor was able to approach and help.

TheNerdyProf 07-17-2017 04:26 PM

My parents have a pool and of course this makes my daughter very happy. She loves summertime cause she spends more days at my parent's house, meaning more days in the pool. I love to watch her in the pool, especially when she decides to jump in. The best part is she makes up names for the jump she is about to do even though they all pretty much look the same. She is 5 and has a creative and weird imagination (I take full credit for that). My favorite name: chatting squirrel

luvtulearn 07-17-2017 04:05 PM

T hrowing frisbees in the sand,

H iding crabs along the strand

E ating melon that tastes so sweet , and tossing rinds at our sandy feet.

B each balls volleyed into the tide and

E merging at the end of the smooth foam ride

A ccumilating sand to build a castle with pride. . .

C ombing for sand dollars that always seem to hide.

H elp me always remember the beach today, and never let it drift my memories away.

. . .Vacationing in Del Mar, CA was a regular event for my family during the last two weeks in Aug. Memories too many to share but not too many to dwell upon.

happyteachin 07-17-2017 03:50 PM

Tubing with my friends family and cooking hotdogs over the fire. I don't think o ever had one without a sandy gritty bite! Ewww

Eagle 126 07-17-2017 03:33 PM

We use to love running through the sprinklers in the summer. There were a lot of kids in our neighborhood. It seems like someone was always watering their lawn. We would go around the neighborhood in our bathing suits looking for a sprinkler. We thought it was a great adventure!

playpower 07-17-2017 01:30 PM

This isn't "fun" but it is meaningful to me...

hopealope 07-17-2017 12:45 PM

I remember having a swimming pool growing up. My sister and I loved to swim in the pool all the time. I remember that one day we were swimming in the pool and the side of the pool gave way and sent all of the water gushing down the hill into the back yard. My sister and I were hanging on for dear life so we didn't rush away with the water. I remember we stayed in the pool splashing around once the water had gone below the hole in the side of the pool. Sadly that was the end of the pool but my dad then bought a boat and we learned how to ski, kneeboard, and tube every night on a local lake. It was a blast.

broomrider 07-17-2017 12:26 PM

My swimming lessons were mostly in the form of observation when our parents enrolled my brother and I at a swimming pool/child care center for a summer. It was run by an elementary school teacher and was very informally conducted--no organized lessons. There was plenty of fresh air, sunshine, and a pool full of kids. Fun.

A rather less fun swim was when my father decided that since he had learned to swim by being thrown into the water while his father rowed away, I might be likewise successful. I wouldn't go close to him when we were near water for some time after that. Probably why we got signed up for the pool summer camp.

I hasten to add that my father became a very successful swimmer, making the Olympic team for the USA in the l920s. He was on the team with Johnny Weissmuller (Tarzan of the 30s and 40s). Me, not so much. But I did pass the "swim or don't graduate high school" test as the last person in the pool.

fish2 07-17-2017 12:23 PM

Our grandchildren were visiting in April and our granddaughter loves pirates. We found a pirate cruise that sounded like fun, so we had a day for just the three of us. She loved it all - tattoos, sword fighting, and lots of treasure! How much fun can a four year old stand (or a couple of 62 year olds)? A day of great memories.

puzzle1mom 07-17-2017 10:45 AM

My mother took my three siblings and me to swimming lessons every summer until I was about 13. The lessons were at an Olympic sized pool at a local high school. On Fridays, we'd be allowed to jump off the diving boards in the very deep end. I always picked the smaller springboards because I was kind of a chicken. The day I finally braved the big diving board m(I was about 10 years old), I will never forget WHAT a "HIGH" it gave me jumping off! From then on I climbed that ladder over and over again - what a thrill!

kcougar 07-17-2017 10:35 AM

As a kid, I took swimming lessons several summers. I HATED IT!!! I do not like the water, even after all those lessons....and I still don't know how to swim.

As a mom, in spite of my negative feelings, I enrolled my kids in swimming lessons starting when they were toddlers. Some of my fondest memories are from those Mom and Tot lessons. It was precious one-on-one time with my kids.

Savvy 07-17-2017 08:34 AM

During my teenage years I worked at a summer camp. We would have to take the kids to the local swimming pool about a mile away. We would walk to the pool twice per week and the best part was the buying ice cream to eat on the way back.

lv2read 07-17-2017 08:24 AM

In my family, we always enjoyed playing in the water. You name it, sprinklers, bath tubs, lakes, local swimming pool and or water balloons. We were more than likely playing with one or more of these during the summer.

One particular summer I will never forget, my older brothers decided to make a slip and slide in our backyard. They set up large tarps the width of our backyard with sprinkler hoses along the sides. (flat hoses with lots of small holes the length of the hose) We turned on the water, ran and flopped down on our bellies or bottoms and slid down the length of the yard. It was a perfect way to cool off. My sister and I had slathered our bodies with coco butter in hopes of getting a tan (oh the horror) so we discovered that we slid very well down the slide. This came in handy when we decided that the slide just wasn't long enough. Our family had purchased more acreage behind our house and had removed the fence. So we turned the slide towards what used to be the field behind our backyard which sloped down. This made our day all the more fun as we gained some speed going downhill.

Needless to say, we all were sunburned and had pink bellies from the day of rubbing and flopping on our bellies. Gotta love the summer memories!

Go Gators 07-17-2017 05:00 AM

Each summer my family would go to the Land Between the Lakes in Kentucky and go swimming. We brought rafts, toys, and food. It was always a long but fun day.

Cat woman 07-17-2017 04:32 AM

When I was growing up our village built a man made lake. I remember all the excitement as it was being dug. We practically lived there once it was completed. Our babysitter ( a teenager) would take us there one hour after eating lunch and we stayed until my mom got home from work. She used that time to meet up with her friends and flirt with boys--- I seriously doubt if she even knew where my sister and I were it didn't matter to us. We had fun swimming out to the raft, standing on our hands in the water, and seeing how many underwater somersaults we could do.

anonymouse 07-17-2017 04:24 AM

The year before I was born, my dad saw in ad in the paper selling a bungalow that was a 5 minute walk from a beautiful kettledrum lake. He bought the house as a surprise for my mom. He wanted to get my mom and all of the kids out of NYC for the summer. My dad was a police officer in NYC and would drive out on his days off to spend them with us We spent every summer at that lake house. Every day we would walk down to the lake and go swimming. It was heavenly to escape the heat of the city to that small town lake on Long Island.

jjwires 07-17-2017 04:16 AM

Cool in kiddie pool with dogs
Big or small fun for all
Blowing bubbles
Chasing butterflies
Running through sprinkler

all41 07-17-2017 03:53 AM

The best memories of my childhood come from the lake. We did not have a cabin or home on the lake, but each weekend Mom & Dad would load up the boat and all us kids and head to a public beach. We learned to swim, fish, and waterski. I was a very skilled water-skier before I was in 1st grade.

It's been at least 20 years since I've been on water-kids.

Singvogel 07-17-2017 03:50 AM

No- The dinosaur wasn't a person; it was a blow-up, green dinosaur. I remember dragging it around by its long neck and trying to sit on it in the shallows of the water- not so easy! I think it was my favorite water toy of all time.

giver1940 07-17-2017 03:37 AM

in high school. I had several handicapped classes; one of them was a class of deaf children. The pool was a huge round pool. Told the students to swim towards the raft in the center of the pool and turn around when I yelled. When the light in my brain finally turned on, I had to swim like crazy to get ahead of them to wave them back.

lisa53 07-17-2017 02:25 AM

We were members of a pool about 1/2 mile from our home. Mom would take us for a swim every day after her afternoon nap. Then we got old enough for swim lessons. Those were in the morning. All five of us were in lessons, but of course, not at the same time. So we would go in the morning and stay till lunch, go home for lunch and nap, and go back for a free swim after that. All summer long, that was my life!

desert flower 07-16-2017 11:20 PM

I grew up in Illinois. We lived in a small town of about 2,500 people or so. One of the things we did every summer was go to the city pool with my cousins. We'd spend the whole day, almost every day there. My cousins' mom always bought them a summer pass for the pool. My parents couldn't afford it, but we got lucky. All we had to do was walk in and say "season" ( for a season pass) and we could keep right on walking through the building to the pool with our cousins. Really, we were always together so they probably thought we were siblings. The pool sat in a beautiful park with lots of grass and trees. I remember the smell of the chlorine and jumping off the high dive. Sometimes, we had enough change to buy an Astropop or snow cone at the snack shack when we were leaving for the day. This is one of my favorite childhood memories!

Chunkey 07-16-2017 08:36 PM

Every summer we go to Water World to start and end our summer. My children now have children, and we continue this tradition!

Shell 07-16-2017 08:29 PM

I used to chaperone my son and daughter every year to the water park while they were in gymnastics camp. They are too old now to have mommy chaperone but it was fond memories. They'll be going Wednesday with their coaches and teammates but no mommy.

arsabl 07-16-2017 07:48 PM

Two distinct memories of water fun come to mind.

1. We spent entire days at our local salt water pool which was divided into the baby pool, 3 foot, 4 foot, and deep end sections. It had a great dock to dive from with a section on the side for playing Marco Polo. We had old tire tubes to float on. Oh, the lazy days of summer! Each day ended with a trip to the snack bar for an ice cream or Big Hunk.

2. Many summers we spent in Flagstaff, Arizona while my parents went to college. On weekends we often traveled for fun. A favorite place was an area called Slide Rock. It was a smooth rock slide in a river. So much fun! When it got crowded we'd find a quiet place by the river to picnic. My brother and I spent hours catching minnows. We always hoped to catch a bigger river trout, but they were too clever for us.

1956BD 07-16-2017 07:47 PM

When I was a little kid we went to the beach. We did not go often as it is about four hours away from where we lived. Anyway I had fun swimming, building sand castles and collecting shells.

I thought of collecting the shells like collecting rocks. I had no idea they had creatures in them! (I guess my parents didn't either ) Then the shells starting walking around in the car! I was screaming and scared. Dad pulled the car over and got the shell creatures away from me. But the memory stuck with me!

Teach4 07-16-2017 07:33 PM

I remember having lots of fun as a child going to a water park with my family. I was always some combination of exhilarated and fearful. But not really scared exactly. Just that kind of fear you have riding a rollercoaster. Sometimes I was allowed to bring a friend.

tctrojan 07-16-2017 07:07 PM

It was always a treat to go to the next town to go to the swimming pool. It did not happen as often as we wanted.

Marriedin79 07-16-2017 07:06 PM

When I was little, we had a small kiddie pool. It was about 5'x10' and put together with rods and a plastic liner.

It was a really hot scorcher of a day. My dad came home from work and got into the pool ... containing only aboutl 8" of water. He was on his back with his eyes closed. We lived in a friendly, fun neighborhood where everyone joked around a lot. Our neighbor came over with a bucket filled with water and ice and poured it on my dad. He jumped out of that pool and chased her all around the yard. It was a funny sight to see.

girl9987 07-16-2017 06:57 PM

When I was a kid, my family and I would go to a local community pool. I loved swimming with my cousins. Since we were all girls, we would pretend to be mermaids swimming in the ocean. The shallow end of the pool and the ladders going down the sides would be our secret "coves."

WIBadgerFan 07-16-2017 05:39 PM

As a child there was one thing that my cousins, brother, and I still remember. We had one of those cheap plastic swimming pools and an old metal swing set with a slide. We took the slide and out it at the bottom of the swimming pool and had a ton of fun sliding down into it. Recently my SIL did the same thing with my niece's slide and pool and it brought back a lot of memories.

Haley23 07-16-2017 05:25 PM

My better water memory is making a hillbilly slip 'n slide with a giant plastic sheet in our front yard. The yard was naturally set on a hill and we would use our hose and dish detergent. My friends and I would spend hours out there!

SteelerFan 07-16-2017 05:20 PM

My favorite memories would have to be when my own children were young and would swim in the pool. Several times a day, we'd be in the pool playing, splashing, and racing. I think my very favorite days were when the kids were learning to swim and the magical day when they made it across the pool alone & afloat.
Oh, those are some great memories.

Munchkins 07-16-2017 04:53 PM

When my boys were young, we spent a lot of time at my inlaws house, which had a river in the backyard. The kids would swim off the dock, and also fish. One day, my nephew cast a line, felt a hard pull on the line, and reeled in....a seagull!!!! As you can imagine, it was an exciting catch!

Youthcantknow 07-16-2017 04:53 PM

huge furry dog beast
ball thrown, splash, happy on deck
soaking human's towel

VivianCP 07-16-2017 04:48 PM

I love this picture of my DD, taken right as she was jumping into the pool at a nearby water park several years ago.

trasie 07-16-2017 04:40 PM

We had a long drive to King's Island water park. It was decided that to spend as much time as possible at the park enjoying the rides we would spend the night at a nearby hotel and arrive at the park when it opened. All was well, a non eventful drive, quick dinner... Upon opening my suitcase to prepare for bed I discovered that my shampoo had leaked. It wasn't bad so on to get a good night's sleep for the fun day ahead.

We went on so many exciting rides, but it was a hot summer day and getting hotter. We finally decided to cool off on a water ride. I was doused in water and it was so refreshing! Walking away from the ride all of a sudden I realized that my pants were sudsing up! A new family story was born!

maui 07-16-2017 04:26 PM

As a kid I loved my slip and slide. My siblings and I had sooo many hours of sliding down, laughing and having such a great time. Those were amazing Summers!!!

meandmyhouse 07-16-2017 03:18 PM

I loved our slip and slide! What's better than flinging yourself onto a wet strip of plastic and sliding across the yard?

TeacherMeg 07-16-2017 03:14 PM

I grew up in South Georgia and we had very HOT summers. We spent a lot of time in the pool or at the beach. One memory that sticks out is a time that my family was at the beach together on vacation when I was about 8. My dad took me out in the water. I was usually only allowed to go in as deep as my waist, but since my dad was there I went a little deeper than that. We were having a great time swimming and splashing around, until I saw a giant wave coming. It was huge and there was no way to avoid it. I remember the wave hitting me and pulling me under the water. I was terrified and trying desperately to find my way back up to the surface. It felt like I was under the water forever when all of a sudden I felt my dad's hand grab onto my arm and he pulled me up. I remember just feeling completely relieved and also realizing how lucky I was that he was there with me in such a scary situation.

My dad passed away almost 4 years ago. I love that I have these sweet memories of him now.

kahluablast 07-16-2017 02:50 PM

Once when I was about 10ish, my cousin and I were swimming in her town pool. She was a much better swimmer than I was. She wanted to go to the deeper end and convinced me she could carry me on her shoulders. Partway there it got too deep for her and she tried to push me off. No way!

We are both still here, so all's well that end's well. I don't trust her any more!

Gogogo 07-16-2017 02:27 PM

To me, summer starts when the public swimming poolo pens and summer is over when it closes. As a child, I spent as much time as I could at the pool. My biggest summertime memory, however, is the smell of wet concrete that surounds swimming pools. It has a certain scent that you don't smell when it rains on a sidewalk. The summer wet concrete/swmming pool smell is one of my favorite smells in the world!

tia 07-16-2017 01:48 PM

i'm seeing a recurring (embarrassing) theme in my memories...

i was fairly well endowed the summer before 7th grade. we had just moved to idaho, and i was sporting a hot pink swimsuit with multiple colored lines at the v-neck of my one-piece that accentuated "the girls".

i was at "The Nat" (Natatorium), one of the few swimming pools in our city at the time. i was climbing up the diving board when some boys asked me hold old i was. they seemed to be surprised to hear i was only 12 (see note above about boobs).

i very much delighted in this admiration....and promptly slipped and fell on the diving board. what a dork.

read2day 07-16-2017 01:46 PM

In Wisconsin going "up north" is a summertime tradition. While we did not own a summer cottage on a lake, many of our friends and family members did. I spent a lot of sunny, water soaked days swimming, playing, and boating in our beautiful Wisconsin lakes when I was young.

JanetL 07-16-2017 01:42 PM

I have many positive memories of water in the summertime. Riding my bike to the community pool with my little sister on the back of it is one of my favorites. We swam there for many hours. I am also fond of remembering going to a Lake Michigan beach with my grandmother which was a treat since I had never been there before.She cooked the best hamburgers with onions those days. My family did not have a lot of money but sometimes we would go to an inexpensive motel an hour away and just swim all day. We felt so lucky because we got to eat junk hamburgers that we never had at home.<!--burger- To this day I still enjoy going to see lakes and oceans on vacations!

sbslab 07-16-2017 01:28 PM

We were poor growing up but never knew it. My dad worked overnights and overtime Saturday mornings. Sundays were family days. My cousins' family was much the same - long work days for my uncle. We had three kids in our family; my cousins had six.

We used to drive twenty-five miles to go to this one park. It had a lovely lake with three beaches. The "main" beach had a snack stand and a play area with swings and other playground equipment. We NEVER got to go there. We always went to the second beach, no matter which set of cousins joined us.

We played in the water all day long. It was the best! We all got along and still do. The girls would play tea party. We'd take deep breaths and sit on the bottom, under the water pretending to pour/drink tea. In the evenings, the boys would catch crayfish and chase us with them. We often stayed until dusk. We'd change out of our swimsuits into pjs for the ride home.

linda2671 07-16-2017 01:10 PM

When I was a little girl, about 4 years old, we went to the public pool with my cousins. I hadn't learned to swim, but I wasn't really afraid. My cousins were supposed to take care of me. We played in the water for a while, and then everyone wanted to go down the slide in the deep end. My twin sister got on the slide, and inched down very slowly, into the arms of my 12 year old cousin. Then it was my turn. I wanted it to be fun, so I pushed off and flew down the slide, knocking everyone out of my way. I remember going under the water, opening my eyes, and seeing nothing but legs. I don't remember if I floated up, or if my cousins pulled my up, but all was well. That was my last trip down the slide until I learned how to swim, but I remember it as one of my first adventures in swimming.

SusanTeach 07-16-2017 12:50 PM

When our kids were little, we had one summer with many trips - Disney World, Dollywood, and camping.

After all the vacations were finished, we asked the kids which one they preferred and they chose camping at the lake! The cheapest vacation! We rented a cabin, fished in the lake, went swimming in the lake (roped off part), paddle boating, etc... The kids even made a little "Bugland" on the small beach on the side - complete with a "pool" for the bugs. They still talk about that trip and it was almost 20 years ago.

If we had known that before the other trips, we'd never have gone to Disney or Dollywood. Lesson learned.

cbgreente2001 07-16-2017 12:36 PM

One of my favorite childhood summer memories is visiting my paternal grandpa in Ohio.Two cousins, an aunt and uncle lived there also.
My uncle and my dad took the 2 cousins, me and my 2 younger brothers to the river. It was just getting dark when we got there, so the heat was not so intense, but the mosquitos were very hungry.
I don't recall any of us getting into the water, but my dad and uncle showed us how to skip stones across the river water. The water was very still so it was fascinating to watch the ripples that the stones made as they sailed along the surface of the river. So peaceful, good memories.

GiantSubs 07-16-2017 12:18 PM

Our neighborhood had a beautiful pool; double Olympic size with swimming lanes on the far side for the adults and plenty of room to splash and play for the children on the near side. In the middle of the pool was a 20 foot deep section, and we had 4 platform diving boards of various heights. To a 10 year old child, those boards were monumentally high and were held in great esteem as the "someday we'll be old enough to go off those" challenge.

It took me a good part of the summer just to have the courage to jump off the lowest one, which was about 8 feet from the pool surface (we had regular size boards a bit further down, but I'd aced those as a 7 year old). One horrendously hot day, when even the pool water wasn't all that comforting and felt more like bath water, there were several of us having a snack during "adult swim". I was watching my friend's older brother go off the very high dive, which to me was about 100 feet high, but in reality was probably only 25 feet high. He made it look very easy, and I made the mistake of saying that out loud. Somebody remarked that it was easy for me to say that but I'd never have the guts to actually do it - and you all know what happened next.

The climb up those multiple sets of ladders was one of the most terrifying experiences of my young life. I knew better than to look down, as I had a slight fear of heights, so I just kept climbing - willing myself to get to the top, walk to the edge, close my eyes, and just jump. I made it to the platform and froze - unable to move forward to the edge or backward down the ladder. I must have stayed there for what felt like hours but was probably only 5-6 minutes when the lifeguard whistled for me to move, as others were waiting. I didn't know what to do, as I found myself unable to move in any direction. One of the teenagers who was waiting to climb up on the next platform down, asked if she could climb the ladder to me and help me either get down or go off. My angel, Melissa, climbed up and got behind me. She broke my trance and offered to either help me climb down or walk me out to the edge. I'm not sure what I answered, but I must have said to go off because the next thing I knew, she was holding my hand, walking me to the end of the board.

I'm still nauseated just recounting the story 30 years later, but the fear that gripped me as I peered over the edge of that 25 foot platform was paralyzing. My friends were cheering me on, and Melissa, who was still holding my hand, told me to look at her instead of looking down. As I broke my stare at the water so, so far below and looked up to her, she smiled and jumped - with me still holding her hand. She let go about halfway through the fall, and I hit the water a few seconds after she did. I kicked furiously to the surface and emerged to a round of applause from every single person at the pool. Apparently my drama at the top, which I was fairly oblivious to in my sheer panic mode, had engaged all of the pool spectators.

Shaking, I climbed out of the pool where Melissa scooped me up in a big hug. I never made it back to that highest platform that summer, but I totally owned the 8 foot and 12 foot platforms. I was determined to make that high jump as my first jump for the following summer, but we moved over the winter, and I never did get to conquer that fear again. And now that I'm in my late 40s, there's no way I'm ever going to!

Charlotte 07-16-2017 12:03 PM

I took swim lessons at our country club when I was 7. There was a swimming race in which I placed 3rd. I won a trophy and everything, and boy did I brag to my friends and at school. So here's what I didn't tell them - there were only 3 people in my race and I got my arm caught in the ladder when I was swimming because I swim crooked. That was 40 years ago, so no point in telling them now!

tyrex 07-16-2017 12:00 PM

When I was a kid my family would spend almost every day at the pool. We'd bring snacks and we'd get an ice cream before we left. In those days pools still had diving boards and I remember the first time I jumped off the high dive! That was also when colored zinc oxide suntan lotion was a fad and I remember the lifeguards wore it on their noses and we thought that was so cool.

teach1975 07-16-2017 11:57 AM

We had such fun as kids just running around the yard with a sprinkler!!Lots of fun on a hot day! I still love the water-even just to look at it!!

bellringer 07-16-2017 11:52 AM

In 1961, my parents purchased 75 front footage on a lake an hour from home. It was UNDEVELOPED, and was only the second lot sold along several thousand feet of lakeshore. We camped on the property for 8 years before they built a summer cabin.
That lake property has been the center of my summers for almost 60 years. I am the current owner and my son will take over someday. Last weekend my parents (90 and 92 YO) and I spent the night there.
What memories!

gardener5 07-16-2017 11:44 AM

I have so many wonderful memories of sailing with my family as I grew up. Sailing can be peaceful and relaxing or fun and bit scary. I love being out on the water. One year I remember seeing lots of monarchs flying by us as we sailed and realized we were watching them begin to migrate south from Canada.

Claire 07-16-2017 11:27 AM

One of my family's funniest summer water memories is from Schlitterbaun a couple of years ago. I am deathly afraid of swimming in any natural water like a river or lake. I don't know what's in there. Anyway, one of the slides we went on in the water park ended by sending you plunging into the actual river in your float. You then float down the river and have to find a place to exit and climb out.

I pretty much had a full on panic attack when I started paddling and something touched my hand under the water. I probably would have been in that river forever floating if my teenage son hadn't of jumped out of his tube and grabbed mine and hauled me to an exit so that I could get out.

javamomma 07-16-2017 11:11 AM

I have always joked that the stork delivered me to a Navy dad because I was a water baby. I love the water: pools, water parks, boating, and especially the beach. I grew up around lakes in the summer because my dad was an avid fisherman. Ironically I discovered my love for beachers as an adult lol

bookbadger 07-16-2017 10:49 AM

When I was a young, goofy teeneager a bunch of us met at the lake for a summer birthday gathering. We spent the day in the water doing our amateur versions of silly synchronized swimming makes me think of the SNL skit with Martin Short!

dawnmei 07-16-2017 10:27 AM

Growing up, we had a community pool at the entrance to our subdivision. Families joined for a yearly rate and it was money well spent. We went almost daily every summer from the time I was 4 until I was out of high school. I clearly remember the first time my brother and I were allowed to ride out bikes there by ourselves, wonder if that would happen these days.

eliza4one 07-16-2017 10:12 AM

Water was a very important part of our summers growing up in a small town in KS!

Our small town had a large swimming pool! We were so lucky!

We were required to take swimming lessons from an early age (which we hated because the water was cold in the morning!). However, it was worth it because once we learned how to swim and passed the test that the swimming pool required, my siblings and I were allowed to walk to/from the pool all by ourselves. Every. single. day. was spent at the pool! From about 12:00-4:00! Sometimes later! Loved it!

When we were younger, we would run through the sprinklers! We had a huge yard with sprinklers that sprayed upwards, throughout the entire yard. We would pretend we were in the ocean, as as "swam" through the entire yard of sprinklers!

Wheelbarrows were also filled with water and we would splash around in those, as well.

So many good summer memories!

GraceKrispy 07-16-2017 10:06 AM

We went to the pool most days every summer and spent long days there. When our parents bought family swim passes, they were given patches that had to be sewn directly onto our suits (and we had to show them at the gate when we went in). If you bought a new suit, you had to get the patch off and re-sew it onto the new suit. We usually had one suit per summer.

I had swimming lessons that always started early in the morning when it was still chilly. During one swimming lesson, we were learning to go off the high dive. I am scared of heights and I was terrified of the high dive! I got up there, and was crying and really upset and wanted to go down, but my instructor pushed me off. I did what basically amounted to a belly flop! Youch! I have not been on a high dive since. I was about 7 or 8.

We also had to wear swim caps if our hair was longer than shoulder length. I always had very short hair, but I remember watching my sister try to get that cap on and off. Baby powder was used! She rarely went swimming.

That pool is now an adaptive playground, because my hometown built a huge waterpark type of setting instead and tore out both community pools (the other pool became a splash pad).

amiga13 07-16-2017 10:05 AM

I grew up in a wonderful beach town in Southern California. My mother insisted on pool swimming lessons every summer followed by Red Cross tests to assure I could swim well enough to brave the waves of the ocean.

I loved swimming and, except for cold and foggy June gloom, I generally liked the lessons. However, I hit a large brick wall when I got to the Red Cross test item which required staying underwater for 1 minute. I just couldn't hold my breath that long. I still remember staying after class for another try. The instructor, kind and patient and encouraging, and I were the only ones in the pool. Mom stood, fingers crossed, nearby on the deck. 6 attempts. 6 failures. The instructor passed me anyway. Maybe she wanted to go home. I prefer to think she was kind.

mrshointz 07-16-2017 09:57 AM

My favorite picture of my grandfather was taken poolside. It captured his personality perfectly. There he is, in his sixties, wearing swimming trunks, flexing for the camera (he was NOT a fit man, but he had a great sense of humor!). The smile on his face is the smile I see in all my memories of him.

SleepEatTeach 07-16-2017 09:57 AM

We used to get a season pass to the town swimming pool every year. We spent the whole summer there, hours and hours every day. We (my two sisters, my brother, and myself) went without any adult supervision . We all knew how to swim and I was probably a tween, but my brother was only 7 or 8. He was a great swimmer and used to do flips off the high diving board. I'm sure we didn't wear sunscreen either.

When I think back, it's hard to believe we were allowed to be there with no adult. It wasn't like the older siblings were looking after the younger ones either. My little brother used to go by himself if the rest of us didn't go. He would ride his bike to get there. The pool is one of my best memories of summer as a kid.

IA11 07-16-2017 09:52 AM

We never went to the pool as kids -- even though living in Texas it was certainly hot enough -- all the time! I suspect it was a money issue, as back then only the more well-to-do neighborhoods has community pools.

We did make great use of the garden hose, sprinklers, and slip 'n slides on a daily basis!

linderdm 07-16-2017 09:39 AM

We have a wonderful, stress-free week at Lake Gaston in June. The weather was perfect, and many hours were spent reading on the dock, pontooning, and paddle-boarding. In addition, it was a vacation with great friends. Hope to go back next summer!

Editor 07-16-2017 09:14 AM

Summertime Memories: Water Fun

Share a brief summertime memory having something to do with having fun with water (cooling off, swimming, learning to swim- at a pool, lake, etc). This can be from your childhood or something that happened to you more recently. Describe an experience, a place, an object, tell a funny story, write a little poetry, share a photo-- anything that comes to mind on this topic! Be sure to leave out any personally revealing information such as real names or locations.

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