It was May 6, 2016, and the Northside Independent School District here in San Antonio had a half-day of school. It also happened to be the Friday of Mother's Day weekend. As it had been a very warm Spring, most neighborhood pools were already opened for the summer season, but were without lifeguards until late May, so the pools were "Swim at your own risk". Several families decided to head to the subdivision pool after getting the kids from school. All the kids from these families ranged in the 3-7-year-old range and were in floaties or puddle jumpers while playing in the pool. They decided to order pizza to be delivered, and once it arrived, the moms got the kids out, took jackets/floaties off, and started preparing the food to eat. One of the little 4-year-old boys decided he wasn't hungry and walked to the midsection of the pool which happened to be the deepest end and jumped in.
Learning to Swim in The Dog Days of summer
My name is Carol Thienpont and I am the General Manager of SafeSplash Swim School locations in San Antonio, Texas. Since I have been a swim instructor for the past 20 years I wanted to make sure my new best friend, my “Bassador”, Ranger, knew how to swim. As I love being in and around the water, I would take Ranger to the lake a lot last summer. He wanted to be everywhere I was, so I wanted to make sure he knew how to doggie paddle. Although as a swim instructor I discourage the doggie paddle with children, I definitely encouraged Ranger to use it.
I have been teaching swim lessons since I was 17 years old. No one needed to tell me the importance of learning how to swim and what an impact it can have in a child’s life. However, having a child changes how you view everything.
Earlier this year, one of my childhood friends suggested that we take a couple’s trip to Mexico, no kids. It was one of those conversations which sounds like a dream, one that you have with your friends and say, “yeah that would be amazing,” but could we really pull it off? The other question that came up for all of us, was could we leave our kids for a week? It turns out this dream conversation turned into reality this July and my husband and I feel it is one of the best vacations we have taken. There are many reasons why it was great for us to take a no kid vacation and many reasons why it was great for my kids to have their parents take a no kid vacation.
When I was in college I started working as a teaching assistant at a local preschool, figuring it would be something easy to do and the hours weaved perfectly between softball practice and my class schedule. I loved going to work because it felt more like fun than an actual job. I felt like a kid again, we did science experiments, played outside and art was a part of the everyday curriculum. What could be better than being a kid every day?