Swimming Pool Toys For an activity that combines healthy exercise and fun, swimming can’t be beat. Throw in a few pool toys, and you’ll have an activity the whole family will want to be a part of. Today’s pool toys run the gamut, from tried-and-true standards to new, innovative toys that will add a new dimension to your water sports enjoyment. From rafts and floats to interactive floating games, there’s a wealth of variety from which to choose.

Pool Rafts

Pool rafts come in a variety of shapes and sizes, from the traditional mattress raft to the tire-like round rafts – you can even choose a two-seater raft with headrests at opposite ends, that allows you to face the person you’re relaxing with. Offering supportive, inflatable bases with or without pillows and headrests, no pool in complete without at least one raft. Most rafts are made of plastics or polymers, which makes them one of the least expensive pool toys you can buy. Most rafts are designed to allow the user to sit up or lie down, and some offer built-in cup holders, for the ultimate in swimming pool luxury.

Pool Floats

Of all of the pool toys and accessories, floats may offer the widest selection. A decade or so ago, there was little distinction made between rafts and floats. While pool rafts were generally regarded as inflatable floats, the pool float encompassed a somewhat wider range of pool toys, but these items were usually restricted to lounges and seahorse-shaped kiddy toys. Today, all that has changed. Even a cursory glance at a webpage or store aisle devoted to pool floats will show you just how far this category of pool toys has grown. Sure, you can still choose a lounger or animal-shaped inflatable toy; but you can also find uniquely designed floats that will set your pool apart as a fun and relaxing mecca for swimmers of all ages. Tugboats, school buses – even giant pretzels and huge inflatable rubber ducks – all have found a home in the realm of today’s pool floats. For kids, consider a floating island, pool seesaw, or inflatable floating house or castle. Adults can enjoy single and double upright or reclining floats, and there are even inflatable bars for after-hours pool play.

Pool Toys

For those learning to swim and dive, consider brightly colored dive sticks or streamers. There are loads of water guns on the market, some of which siphon an endless stream of water directly form the pool. Boats, fish, sharks, and other vehicles and creatures with swimming action can add a lot of play value for kids of all ages. And don’t forget the ever-popular pool noodles, ideal for floating or a little good-natured jousting.

Pool Games

Tried-and-true standbys, like pool basketball and volleyball, remain as popular today as they were when they were first introduced. And today, they’re joined by a host of new activities and game-oriented pool toys, including water bombs, water polo sets, and even underwater pogo sticks. Darts and archery are newer additions to the collection of pool toys you’ll find available. For the more cerebral, floating checkers and chess – even floating blackjack games – are all available. Be sure to pick up a deck of waterproof cards, designed specifically for use in the swimming pool.

With or without pool toys, swimming is great exercise. But routine laps can get pretty boring, pretty quickly. With a selection of pool toys at hand, there’s no end to the fun your friends and family will have when they jump in your swimming pool for a few hours of rest, relaxation, and good, clean fun!

For those of us who are lucky enough to have an outdoor area of our very own, properly landscaping this area can create a living environment that can be enjoyed and rewarding for years to come. Whether you have a large yard or even just a small piece of yard off a backyard patio, the options for landscaping are endless. But before you head out to the local home and garden market for shrubbery and lawn enhancements, you should examine exactly what type of landscape idea you wish to implement and the maintenance factor that will come with your new yard.

There are many places to search for  exterior landscaping design ideas. if you are new to this type of development. Local home and garden centers are a great place to start if you prefer to implement it yourself rather than hire a professional landscaping service. The Internet has a huge online resource of information for anyone that is a beginner or for someone who is knowledgeable in landscaping but just needs a few new and creative ideas for their home.

It is important to do a simple sketch with measurements of your back and front landscape area. Note where the doors and windows of your home are. Decide what locations you want to change. Do you want an area for the kids? Would you like a vegetable garden or an outdoor kitchen? How about a small koi pond?

Yes, you can install a water feature in just one weekend and with minimal cost if you are willing to do a little digging and move a few large rocks into place. Have a barbecue and invite a few of your friends over to help. There are pond and waterfall kits available that are easy to install.

Your local climate will have a tremendous impact on the type of landscaping that you should have in place. Flowering plants that require a great deal of humidity will not thrive in a dry climate. While there are some plants that will need direct sunlight, there are others that prefer a shaded area in order to grow. If you are not proficient in the different types of flowers and plants that are best for your area, be sure to utilize local resources in order to check out the best selections for your planning purposes.

Easy care, low maintenance plants and construction materials is what you should look for if you do not want to be chained to your backyard. Most of us want a place to barbecue and entertain but don’t like the raking, weeding, trimming etc.

Don’t be afraid to get rid of your lawn. It is a huge consumer of time, fertilizer and water. Try filling in with a large brick patio area with stepping stones inviting a visitor to explore your yard and gardens. Landscape with river rock meander around the yard to mimic a dry creek.

Just because you are not an expert gardener does not mean you cannot plan out beautiful and easy landscaping ideas for the yard and garden. You will build your confidence, as well as your muscles, when you have completed your backyard project.