Tag Archives: pool

Floating Flowers… Fun for Pools, Baths, & Sensory Bins

Floating Flowers for Water PlayWhen we went to pick up a pool noodle for Gracen’s marble run water slide, she originally fell in love with a flower-shaped noodle.  While I knew it wouldn’t be the best fit for our marble run, at $1.25, I knew we would eventually figure out a way to put it to good use.  

IMG 0351It was my first time seeing this sort of pool noodle, and all I knew was that I wanted to slice it up to create tons of little individual flower shapes.  

IMG 0349So that’s just what I did.  Just like when slicing a pool noodle in half vertically, I found that using a sharp, serrated knife and a sawing motion worked best.  I sliced ours about an inch thick, but you could do them any thickness you like – even varying thicknesses would be fun!

IMG 0353As I chopped, Miss G ran the ready flowers over to her blow up pool and tossed them in!  

IMG 0375It’s such a simple thing, but they looked so pretty and inviting dancing around on the water’s surface.  (I’m already picturing them in bath tubs and sensory bins too!)

IMG 0367I think Miss G agreed, because she immediately jumped in {despite the freezing cold water} and started splashing around like mad!

IMG 0361When the splashing had subsided a little bit, Grandma Charlotte showed Grae how the flowers could be used as building blocks.  

IMG 0458It’s definitely easier in still-ish water, but it’s equally fun when in or out of the pool.  Towers can be built…

IMG 0460Pyramids can be built…

IMG 0466And ‘trains’ can be built too!  Of course, the possibilities are really endless when it comes to building structures – even when they’re floating ones. 

IMG 0358Now the only question is how I’m going to convince Brad that heaps of pool noodle flowers are a Kuwait necessity…  I mean with the heat and the amount of time we spend in and around water there, they are, aren’t they? ☺ 

Building Structures With Floating Flowers | Mama Papa Bubba


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Pool Time

IMG 9889IMG 9893IMG 9896Top knots, ruffled bathing suits, backyard pools, and vacation time… These are the things summer is made of.


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Second Beach Outdoor Pool

IMG 9512Gracen has been very anxiously awaiting this day since we first visited the Second Beach playground back in February.  From the opposite side of the park, she immediately spotted the seal-shaped water slide in the outdoor pool enclosure and has asked when we’d be able to visit ever since.  Sadly, when it opened at the end of May, we had a long bout of rainy, dreary weather, so that prolonged our visit even further…  But when we woke up to a gorgeous, sunny day this morning and asked the little lady what she wanted to do, the first thing out of her mouth was “Go to the pool with the seal slide – WOOHOO!”  Her fist shot into the air in celebration and our adventure for the day was set.

IMG 9518IMG 9514IMG 9520IMG 9517

IMG 9523Surprisingly, the much talked about seal slide was not the hit of the day today…  Instead, she was all about this much larger, much faster turtle slide over in the deeper end of the pool. The truth of the matter is that she loved this slide so much that very little swimming actually took place – it was simply slide after slide after slide for pretty much our entire visit, which was totally fine with me.  Watching the anticipation as she climbed the steps and the absolute joy as she sped down and splashed into the water melted my heart and filled me with pride.  I’m so, so glad our little lady loves water as much as she does.

IMG 9542IMG 9543IMG 9528The only slight downside to our morning was that it was chilly.  Very chilly, in fact.  Despite the fact that the pool is heated and it truly was a beautiful day, the wind off of the ocean sucked away the warmth and made you shiver the moment your shoulders left the water. And while Grae didn’t seem bothered in the least by it, at a certain point we knew it was time to get out, dry off, and warm up.

IMG 9530But that won’t stop us from returning very soon – Miss G’s already asking when that’ll be!

Second Beach {Outdoor} Pool is located on the west side of Stanley Park.  For more information, including schedules and rates, click here.


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Pool Party Bath

Pool Party Bath | Mama Papa BubbaThis was an on the fly idea that came about tonight during dinner.  G was wearing her bathing suit (as you do when you’re 2 and a 1/2 and hanging out at home) and asked for a ‘special, special, soooooo special bath’ tonight.  No go-to ideas came to mind, but my little doodle eating dinner in a ruffled polka dot bathing suit gave me one!  … A pool party bath!

IMG 8161I filled the tub up nice and full and added a few drops of aqua gel food colouring to give it a pool feel, then collected a few pool/summer things – beach balls, a watering can, a pail and shovel, some water wings, and a water bottle.  For extra fun, I loaded our little bubble machine up with solution and placed it so that the bubbles would flow down into the tub from up above.   Gracen grabbed her sun glasses and her pool towel, and we were good to go.

IMG 8183Such a simple idea, but Grae just thought it was the best thing ever.  Things did get a little wild when she began trying to pop every single bubble before they hit the water, but it was all good fun.  Part way through, we took out our window crayons and added a ‘party wall’, which was just as much fun to splash off as it was to draw on. ☺

For more of our fun bath ideas, click here.


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iPhoneography // Water Baby

IMG 6142We’ve been back in swim classes now for a few weeks and Miss G is just loving it.  The classes are upbeat, fun, and filled with songs and play, but teach beginning swimming skills at the same time.  So far, we’ve been practicing most of the same skills we learned last session… Front starfish floats, back starfish floats, wall push offs (front and back), jumping into the water from sitting and standing positions, blowing bubbles, and dipping different parts of our faces in the water.  Last time I wrote about swimming lessons, I mentioned that I was feeling pretty unsure about the upcoming ‘submersion lesson’.  Luckily, when it happened, I felt comfortable with the way it was introduced and Gracen was fine about quickly being dunked under when it was done as part of a fun song.  Ever since, we’ve made sure to practice at least once or twice each time we visit the pool, just so she stays okay with it.  

Today, the first submersion day of this set of classes, Grae opted to go to the teacher (which is huge in itself because Gracen is quite shy and sensitive and our instructor is quite loud and direct) and be passed under the water to me.  Not only did she try it, but she came up smiling, did another really long underwater pass, and then continued to ask to do it again and again long after the instructor had exited the pool.  

I’m so proud of our little fishy and I’m thrilled that she loves being in the water.

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iPhoneography // Sunday Fun Day

As I mentioned yesterday, we’ve been bu-sy lately…  So today we put away the paintbrushes and screwdrivers and had a little family fun day.  Here’s our day in iPhone photos…

Sunday Funday


first family seawall ride in stanley park // i spy a water park

brave until close // heat relief

beach stop // picnic lunch

papa and his girl // beach exploring

wild water baby // biking makes a girl tired (oopsies!)

sleeping beauty on the sky train // thirsty

popsicle holder // mmm… peaches!

backyard pool // well-fed belly

double fisting // dessert

All photos edited using Instagram. Find me under ‘jkossowan’.

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Our Afternoon

Our afternoon in photos…

IMG 7546IMG 7548IMG 7549IMG 7557IMG 7558IMG 7560IMG 7564Wild water baby in the wading pool.

IMG 7575IMG 7577IMG 7578Sprinkler fun with Papa.

IMG 7583Preparing a snack.

IMG 7588Straight from Grandma’s garden.

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Soaking Up the Summer

IMG 6697IMG 6700IMG 6701IMG 6705IMG 6707IMG 6709IMG 6713I’m not ashamed to say that we were back at Maple Grove Pool again today… Yes, again. But what’s not to love? Picnics, swimming, splashing, and playing, all while soaking up some vitamin D (doused in all-natural sunscreen and covered by a huge sunhat, of course…)  These are the things that summer is made of.

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Hillcrest’s Outdoor Pool

IMG 6644In an effort to keep cool while enjoying the sunshine, we tried a new outdoor pool today…  The outdoor pool at Hillcrest Centre. It was a beautiful afternoon and we certainly enjoyed ourselves, but I must say, it was no competition for the lovely Maple Grove Pool.  While we love Hillcrest’s indoor pool, the outdoor one was just okay.  The downsides? The wading area is quite small and the non-slip pool bottom is really pokey.  While probably great for safety, it’s hard on your hands, knees, and bottom, not to mention your suit!  The other thing I wasn’t super keen on was the {very powerful} spray apparatus. While a ton of fun for older kids, being sprayed in the face while not expecting it was not a lot of fun for Miss G or I, and because of it’s water pressure, there are not many areas where you’re out of its range.  The perks? It’s really close to us and the admission also allows you to use the indoor pool which is nice if you need a break from the sun.  While it wasn’t our favourite, we’ll probably try visiting again on a morning when there may be fewer older kids and less chance of being the spray apparatus’ target.

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Round Two

IMG 6404IMG 6407This afternoon we set out to visit another wading pool off of the Vancouver wading pools & spray parks list, but weren’t overly successful.  In fact, we down right failed.  I’d decided we’d to go to Balaclava Park in Dunbar, as I love the area and had read good things online. We arrived without issue to find a giant park, busy with an adult soccer tournament, but the problem was that there was no pool in sight… Now we didn’t get out of the car to scour every square inch of the park, but I figured I’d probably see some sign of a pool while circling the park very slowly again and again, no? No such luck.  There was a {very} small concrete enclosure which looked like it might be used by beginning skateboarders, but could that have been it? I have no idea. To me, no water = no pool.  So on we went.  Back to Maple Grove Pool for the second time in the last few days.  And you know what? Miss G didn’t mind a bit.  Plus, she had Bubba there this time to share in all the fun.

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