You know how it takes something strange to make you feel a certain thing? Like this: I was a “grown up” for many, many years but it wasn’t until I signed my first loan documents for a mortgage that I “officially” felt like a grown up. I was a parent for many, many years, OK, only 5, before I truly felt like we were parents. With kids. And that’s when we decided to get our first grown up family purchase for the kids. A trampoline.
Living down in the Southern Highlands meant that our choice of a “family” investment was fairly limited. It couldn’t be a pool – unless we were planning on an indoor heated job, which we were not, and an outdoor pool is not an option given that it’s too cold to swim 10 months of the year. I scoured Pinterest for amazing tree houses and tried to convince Rob of their merits. My brother and his wife invested in an amazing cubby house with slide and climbing stuff and swings, which was great – but as soon as the kids were past 5 or 6 it just didn’t get used as much. Next in line was a trampoline. Yes, that seemed to fit the bill.
Like any major decision in my life I did what I always do: ask my blog Facebook readers for their opinion. What was the best one to get? What one did most people think would be most suitable for us? We needed something that was safe, and sturdy. That would last at least 10 years of serious jumping. We needed one that could handle the elements down here – ferocious winds, heavy frosts and ice most mornings in the winter, and a reasonably hot summer. The one suggestion that came up over and over again? Springfree Trampoline.
So I did my due diligence. Flinched at the EXORBITANT price. Looked at other, cheaper versions, and tried to convince myself that they would be suitable. Then I would have conversations with someone who told me that there’s had blown away down here, that the net had broken, that their kid had fallen off or out of one and I was back to square one. I pondered some more, tried to discuss with Rob and then eventually bit the bullet putting safety and quality first and ordered the Springfree online (bonus!). I waited until Rob was a few drinks in before telling him that I had just spent $1300 on a trampoline and just how and why this was the best option for us. As a family. The old justify a purchase to make yourself feel better. Yes, that one.
The packages arrived by mail 2 days later and Rob had the job of putting that sucker together. I “suggested” that he get a mate over and they do it together. He “suggested” to me that as the Father, he could do it. We then proceeded to have one of those fights you have when constructing things for your kids. You know the ones right? Like the bike, the night before your kid’s birthday when you have had 3 too many glasses of wine? Or the cot? When you are emotional, and pregnant, and nesting? Yes, those fights. He could do it…DEAR GOD HE WAS GOING TO DO IT BY HIMSELF…and he did. In the rain too for extra misery. I watched through the kitchen window as he miscounted the underneath shock absorber thingy’s not once but twice, which meant he had to start all over again. I kept the girls inside as much as possible so their questions are “is it done yet?” for the 56th time stopped adding to the drama. I went out and begged him to let me, or someone help, but it got done. A number of hours later. And there she was! A vision in all her Springfree glory! She would want to be given her price tag. And I’m still to understand why after all that money you don’t even get a ladder for the price? But there she was! In all her put together by a cranky husband glory!
Pretty much each and every day since October the trampoline has been used. That’s a pretty good amount of use for kids who usually lose interest quickly. I have only JUST stopped myself from using a padlock on the net and locking the buggers in there on a few occasions, and I’m sure broken the “recommended” weight use when all 4 of us hop on there, lie down, and look at the sky. With all our visitors we have down here it’s something fun to do – and as a bonus it’s outside so most of the time I can’t hear the noise. That pre-bed time feralness is jumped out of the girls, the early morning burst of energy is taken out of them. There’s peace of mind knowing that the only injuries that will occur from playtime in the Springfree is from pulling each others hair out and over zealous tumble turns. Standard playtime around here. Almost a year on I’m saying that thing will be close to being paid off in cost per use. Even Rob might be convinced.