Sumer thoughts – your thoughts on our questions

With a few weeks of great weather in Belgium, the usual questions on tools and equipment pop up. What are your thoughts?

The pool or pond?

Now that our 2 daughters know how to swim, this might be the right time for a pool or pond. The last few weeks, it has been really good weather. 25°C and up (77°F). Each time that we went to a pool, it felt great to cool down and play with the girls.

What if that joy is available right in my backyard? Would that not be great. And the kids will be more than happy to invite friends – and so will my wife and I.

In case you do not know the weather in Belgium, here is the average maximum temperature.


And a part of the answer might already be given by Mustard Seed: You never feel safe with the combo pool and kids. We had friends over that have the same opinion.

The one point I am not sure about is the maintenance you need to give. Here, I assume a pond is less work than a pool.

Coal or gas BBQ?

The last 2 years, when we have friends over for a BBQ, I feel less and less amused by the fact that it takes time and attention  to get the coals up to temperature. It is time I would rather spend on other things.

  • Sitting with the guests and have a beer or Gin Tonic
  • Play with the kids

This is also the reason that we do not BBQ a lot in the week: Home too late, kids need to go to bed early,…

It could also be my skills off course. We have a barbecook that is supposed to light itself… so far the theory.

I could buy one of these coal chimneys that claim to be hassle free to light up your BBQ. This is quite cheap. Or we could get a new gas BBQ.

How do you light your BBQ?

Enjoy the summer









21 thoughts on “Sumer thoughts – your thoughts on our questions

  1. Plenty of gas BBQ’s here in Australia. Maybe it has to do with our national hobby of ‘making things as easy as possible’. There is nothing like a bit of instant heat for cooking. As for a backyard pool/pond, as a kid I liked the adventure that came with going out to the beach or a neighbours/local pool to swim. Though having one in the backyard would have been cool. We just entered winter and the current temperature is 24C! 🙂


  2. No on the pond and the pool. Just too much hassle for the times you can really enjoy it. Without heating the time you can use a pool in Belgium is really limited (it takes a lot of time to heat such a mass of water) best is to provide heating (solar heating, there are systems than can do it pretty cheap The DIY approach could get you one pretty cheap when using intex like this
    but I love swimming and we have a huge garden and I still refuse to get one! In my mind, it is not worth the hassle of the maintenance. Having friends who have a pool is definitely the way to go. So, euhm yeah forget what I just said and go for it!!;-)
    For the BBQ: definitely coal, gas is cheating! Personally, I am on the look out for something with wood (but then again, I have a small orchard …)


  3. I had an above-ground pool growing up. I LOVED it. But it was a lot of work. My parents made that part of the deal. I would help with upkeep or away it would go. Because it was above ground, when I “outgrew” it (got too busy on weekends, etc.), we passed it along to my cousins. But like others have said, lots of work!
    What good questions to ask and problems to have? Must mean it’s summer!


  4. We have a neighborhood pool that we get a lot of use with the two boys. I’ve thought how it would be convenient to have it right in the backyard but probably not worth the cost and maintenance like you mentioned. A number of people in our neighborhood do still have a backyard pool despite the good access to a neighborhood pool.
    As for the BBQ we’ve always used gas light up for the convenience and quick heat up. I have thought about getting a smoker though which would take a really long time to cook but would be great on weekends. But now we’ve decided to go vegan so that won’t be happening… 🙂


  5. I would also say no to the pool or pond. With that many alternatives, it might not proof to be necessary. Also the weather wouldn’t be ‘enough’ in my opinion to be an argument to own a pool in BE or NL.
    As for the BBQ, we work with coal ourselves. But do have the same feelings about heating up. Instead we’re thinking to by a table bbq on the side for 2 – 5 people, which is very easy to use. For larger parties you can still use a BBQ starter like Meneer en Mevrouw mentioned.


  6. Unfortunately it appears that a pool is not in either one of ours futures even though it would definitely be wonderful 🙂 Plus for me I would only get to use it maybe 3 months out of the year. The rest of the time it would just be a hole in the ground.


  7. One of my friends has a gas BBQ, they like it a lot. It gets used almost every day that the weather permits it as they enjoy cooking outside. We also have one of those Barbecooks, sometimes it lights easily but other times it’s a pain in the ass.

    Pools are wonderful for some time but are expensive in terms of installation cost as well as upkeep. Everyone I know with a pool, a jacuzzi or a sauna barely uses it once the novelty wears off.


  8. Gas BBQ for sure. Saves so much time and effort. And we know, time is money. The results are basically the same. It’s all about spending time with guests or family. That will provide more time with them and less time for maintenance to get things going.


  9. We have a pool…it came with the house we bought on the cheap during the housing crisis. Pro: It is great, especially during the hot days. When we have a party in the summer, we can entertain people at home and we don’t need to go any further than the fridge in the pool house for a nice cool beer. 🙂 The first couple of years living here, we didn’t feel the need to go abroad. We have the same during hot weekends: we just stay at home and chill by the pool, often with friends. In a way, it has made us very lazy. Last but not least, it is great after a run of bike ride, or in the morning when the sun is coming up. It is true that we use it only about 4 to 5 months a year (May to October if it ‘s warm enough). CON: it is a lot of work and the filter has to be on a lot (hello energy bill!), and the pool needs cleaning (vacuuming) at least once a day, plus you need to monitor the pH value and chlorine level. I would never have bought a pool myself, but now that we have it, it is a lot of fun, especially for the kids.
    we don’t heat it but we have a black pool cover with some sort of bubble wrap on the inside. This can get the temperature up easily and it protects against the cold at night.


  10. I also live in Belgium. As I said, depending on the weather, we can still use the pool at the end of September or beginning of October. We’ve had some long-lasting summers the last couple of years! (And with May already being so hot, I wonder what’s in store for the rest of the summer…).


  11. I’d lean towards no on the pool. I think it makes sense if you live in a year round pool use climate but it’s too much hassle otherwise.

    Gas for the BBQ – easier to use means you’ll actually use it more often.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s