Emily dances & Anna plays at school assembly

The school had an assembly yesterday to introduce all of the Fall sports teams. Emily danced with the Pacesetters. She’s in the back row, starting out 3 in from the right and ends up 5 in from the right. The video is a bit grainy, but she does an awesome job!

The band also played before and after the assembly. Anna has joined the band this year as a percussionist, playing the marimba and the cymbals. Here’s a quick clip of her playing with mallets on the cymbal.

The building of the new backyard pond & waterfall

Linda and I have been wanting to build a pond in our backyard for several years. We have had small water fountains, but never one that created the sound that we really desired.

We had an area in the back yard that had been pegged for a while as the perfect spot. The only holdback was that it was where the swing set was located. The previous owner built it and it was perfect when we moved in when our girls were 4- and 5-years old. However, they never really used it anymore except a couple times a year when they would sit on the swing for about 45 seconds.

It was decided that the structure would come down and we would put our pond there. I enlisted deconstructing help from one of our neighbors for the price of one sixpack of beer; he owned the power tools.

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We made the decision to leave a portion of the structure to create an arbor that plants could grow up and over.

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We then waited for the company, Swan’s Water Gardens, to have an open date when they could get started. While Linda and I were out riding our bikes one morning, we received a phone call stating that they would be there that afternoon. We were very excited to see them come start pulling up grass and digging a hole. Stephen, Micky, and Eric were a fabulous and efficient 3-man crew!

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Amazingly, this was all done in just about four hours. They said they would be back in the morning to start laying rock. They predicted it would take another 1.5 days.

The next morning arrived and they were efficient getting the liners and barriers installed. Wheelbarrow after wheelbarrow were brought back with rocks and rocks and rocks. Watching all of the rocks hauled reminded me why I was glad I wasn’t the one haling all of those heavy boulders.

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After the liner was laid out, the stones were installed – ONE by ONE!

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The 3 pond water lines were placed within the hole just after the picture above was taken. They were secured and more rocks placed around them. Once the large boulders were laid out, a large gravel mix was used to fill in any gaps. This was not thrown in by the bucketful or shovelful, but laid carefully by hand and shovel. The meticulous work was amazing.

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The rocks were all laid out by about 3pm. It would’ve taken me three weeks of daily work to get to this point. It was time to start washing the dust off all the rocks.

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I was amazed at how beautiful the rocks became once the dust was washed off and their colors started showing through. After washing the rocks off and pumping out the dirty water, it was time to start filling the pond. The hose was cranked to full blast and allowed to fill the hole.

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A full 55 minutes later and the pond was filled.

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The pond was started at 1pm on the first day and finished by 5:45pm the next day.  WOW!

Linda spent the next few days obtaining plants and fish. We started with 10 small gold fish (we’re currently down to 9).

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Here’s a picture of our waterlily that finally bloomed after sitting in the pond for almost 10 days.

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If you’d like to enjoy some video of the pond and backyard, here are Instagram videos posted. Enjoy.

 

Enjoy the sight AND sound of the new pond with waterfall

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The relaxation possibilities are endless – from the hammock, to the dining table, and finally to the patio furniture.

The relaxation possibilities are endless…

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And finally, enjoy the goldfish!

Wanna see the goldfish?

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