We have been discussing whether to get a trampoline or a swingset for a while now. We finally decided on a trampoline because:

a) Ali really seems to love all things gymnastics.
b) We can play with swingsets at any park.
c) It was surprisingly much cheaper that a swingset.
d) Chris had one growing up and loved it.
e) I always wanted one growing up because I wasn’t allowed to play on them.

Which brings me to an interesting aside. I find parental safety rules quite hilarious, because all parents have different (and quite contradicting) ideas of safety.

For instance, Chris had a trampoline. I wasn’t allowed to even jump on them because my Dad deemed them unsafe.

HOWEVER, Chris would have NEVER been allowed to ride on a motorcycle with anyone, yet my Dad would take us flying, airborne, and WAY faster than the speed limit on his motorcycle.

Granted, he also taught motorcycle safety courses and had ridden as a policeman on a motorcycle. I don’t know if that makes it safer, or if it just makes it more ironic.

Anyway, you get my point. Parents are funny. And I can’t wait until we’re old enough to have opposing safety regulations with Ali’s friend’s parents. I can hear it now: “But Mooooommmmm, AJ is allowed to ride HER skateboard in the road!!!”

Oh, the joy.

So. Back to the trampoline. We finally bought one on Friday night, in the box, and decided that we would put it together Saturday morning.

Of course, Ali woke up Saturday morning, and the first thing she said was, “I would like to jump on my trampoline now, please.”

So to help pass the time for her and hopefully keep her entertained, we got out her pool and a ton of pool toys, and set her up to play:

Which was, I’m pretty sure, the most brilliant move we could have made. She can play in her pool, by herself, for hours.

Or, in a more mathematical equation, she can play in her pool for the exact amount of time that it takes two people to assemble a trampoline, minus 15 minutes. And those last 15 minutes will be sure to be filled with exclamatory statements of exactly HOW VERY DONE she is with her pool.

The trampoline came like this:IMG_0712

And included a very intimidating 96 springs:


Chris and I got all of the base pieces laid out:


While Ali was quite happily and uncaringly playing in her pool. IMG_0720

Then we began assembly.



IMG_0725 IMG_0726 IMG_0727

We worked great together as a team. We did the springs together, the legs together –everything. We were feeling really proud of our teamwork, until we realized that we made one tiny little mistake. . .

We put the netted enclosure on inside out.


To fix it, we would have to undo almost the entirety of our last two and a half hours of work. Undo every spring, every eyelet hook-in. . . all of it.

Luckily, I’m married to an engineer. And if there’s one thing engineers know how to do, it’s how to engineer AROUND a screw-up. So he figured out a workaround, and we went with that.

So don’t come over and sue us because our enclosure is inside out. You WON’T be invited back.

We got it all put together, and, like a good Daddy, Chris gave it the first test jump:IMG_0730

And when it was deemed safe, Ali and I gave it a try:


As much as she is obsessed with jumping in her bed, she got a bit spooked.

Of course.

That always happens after we expend amazing amounts of energy to make something special. So we sat, and laid on it, and took our time. . .


AND we didn’t let her off when she begged to get out.

And sure enough, in about 10 minutes, she was having a perfectly glorious time:

IMG_0741 IMG_0743 IMG_0759 IMG_0764IMG_0776

But there’s one thing that can always make a new toy more fun:IMG_0785

A best friend.

AJ came over Saturday night, and they jumped, and ran, and played rosies, and crawled until they had both sweated out 99% of their body weight.



Yes, this is going to be a fun, fun family activity.

Until, of course, my Dad is proven right, and someone gets hurt.

But, for the record, Trampolines are made MUCH safer than when we were the kids – there is no way to fall out, or to get tangled in the springs.

So there. We made a logical decision and this in no way is me living out my rebellious Junior High desires.

And with that, I’m going to stay out past curfew tonight.

15 thoughts on “Jumping Into The Future

  1. Awesome! I too was not allowed to have a trampoline, but I snuck into the neighbor's backyard one day when they were gone, jumped on their trampoline, and broke my arm. Hey, that's what I get for trespassing. DOn't worry though it was a freak accident and I am the most clumsy person on earth. I know you will all love jumping on your trampoline, and I plan on getting one soon despite my history with them.

  2. I know a mom of three boys and she puts soap and a water hose on there to add a jump in the element of danger. her boys soap it all up and then slip and slide as they jump.. yeah.. waiting for a broken limb for sure.. but i want to do it too! ha! have fun!

  3. I wasn't allowed to jump on trampolines either. They scared my parents to death and now I am probably too cautious with them with my kids. But, they haven't had many chances to jump on one so its been pretty good. That one looks very safe though and your pictures are great. That is going to be great to get her really tired before bedtime!

  4. I love trampolines! I think they are perfectly safe with the netting that you can get now…yours looks really safe. I would not recommend jumping on the trampoline with a milk jug full of water…I don't even remember why/how that scenario happened but I was part of such an experiment in high school and ended up tearing the ligiments away from my ankle bone…horribly painful and even now (almost ten years later) it occasionally twinges. Happy jumping!

  5. We never had a trampoline when I was growing up either. I'd like to get one for the girls. They would have a blast! Enjoy your new toy!

  6. I'm very impressed that y'all were able to put that thing together, especially when it was 100 degrees outside this weekend. It looks like so much fun, I'm glad Ali likes it! Can't wait to try it out!

  7. Thank you for the story, it made my day. I never understood how Chris had a trampoline in the first place but that is a whole different story. She will have many happy hours on it and I agree with the theory you can go to the park and swing. LYB

  8. great post as we are trying to decide which to get and assemble too! I am a first time visitor to your blog, but a follower on twitter :)

  9. As dare-devillish as your brother is, he also inhereted the "trampolines aren't safe" mentality from your dad. He's not so worried about kids getting thrown off as much as how easy it would be for them to sprain an ankle. I don't think he feels so strongly about it that he would forbid our children to get on one, but I doubt we'll have one in our backyard anytime soon. And yet, I have a sneaking suspicion that he'll try to get the kids on a motorcycle within the next few years (that is, if he can navigate around my cold, lifeless body lying across the driveway :)).

  10. we didn't get a trampoline either. We did, however, spend hours jumping around adn playing in the hayloft of the barn (with snakes) and riding horses all over rural Arkansas. BTW, I use the line, "but I'm not _____'s mom–I'm YOUR mom, and I said NO."

  11. Please be careful with the trampoline (of course you are). Our pediatrician does not like them at all. He says he would not let his children use one, even with a net. He has had patients fall through a net that broke/malfunctioned. He said the only way he would even consider letting a child use it is one at a time, with a net, with adult spotters. We trust our pediatrician, and will definitely heed his advice.

  12. I had a trampoline as a kid and LOVED it. It was so much fun. We didn't have the enclosure though so mine wasn't as safe. I think we fell off a few times, but no one got majorly hurt. :) :) I'm glad you guys liked the trampoline. I think you made a good safe choice. :) :)

  13. I grew up with a trampoline. We had no net, no pads, nothing! Just pure metal rods and springs all the way around. I have a younger brother and sister and none of us ever got hurt surprisingly. I love them! Have fun!
    April S.

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