Two years ago when we moved to Syracuse we were pretty excited that Syracuse had public pools that you could swim in for free but when I got on the website to check hours I realized that there could only be 3 kids under a certain height limit per adult. I had 4 kids under that limit and Glenn was taking anatomy therefore we couldn't go swimming that summer.
Last summer we signed the kids up to take swimming lessons at Thorndon Park. They all made quite a bit of progress in their swimming ability and getting over fears in the water. Lessons through the city program are cheap ($10 for 2 weeks - 10 half hour sessions) for city residents so how could we resist.
We've had a busy summer this summer but I really wanted the kids to take lessons again. I signed them up when we got home from camping but since it was so late they had to put them in a bunch of different sessions. They started lessons last Monday. Caleb is in Blue Whales at 9:30, Hannah is in Blue Whales at 10 then we have an hour break before Lydia and Abigail's Goldfish lessons at 11:30. It has been fun but tiring to spend our mornings at Thorndon Park. During our break we play in the spray park or play on the playground and have a snack. We have made some new friends and played with some old friends as well.
We had a busy week last week with something every afternoon but we stopped by the pool entrance as we were leaving one day last week and found out that Caleb is tall enough to not need an adult for free swim. It has been a hot week this week and so yesterday we decided to stick around after Lydia and Abigail's lesson for free swim (which starts at noon). We stayed for a little over an hour. It was nice to cool off after hanging around the pool watching the kids swim all morning. We enjoyed it so much that we decided to do it again today. With temps going to be around 100 tomorrow I think that it is likely that we will do free swim again tomorrow.
At first I was annoyed two years ago when I couldn't go to free swim with my kids but after swimming at the pool yesterday I realized that I am thankful. Because of the swim lessons that the kids have taken last year and this year Caleb and Hannah were able to pass swim tests that enabled them to go into the deeper section of the pool without me and I didn't have to worry about them. Lydia and Abigail have confidence in the water so that they can swim around without clinging to me. Had I been able to take my kids to the pool 2 years ago I would have been worried about their ability and I would have had 2-3 little girls clinging to me, afraid of the water. They may have enjoyed it but it would have been very stressful for me. Now we can just go and have fun. It's another thing I love about this stage of parenting. My kids are learning so much independence. It is great. So now I am thankful that we couldn't swim in Thorndon Pool 2 years ago. I am also very thankful that we can swim in it now.