After this Reddit user’s dog passed away, he dealt with his grief by working outside. He decided to build a concrete koi pond, but soon enough that spiraled into something way bigger.
He has some experience building koi ponds in other people’s backyards, but what he was about to start would be his biggest outdoor project yet. Keep reading to see how he turned this unsightly backyard ditch into an outdoor oasis.
This is what he planned from the beginning. Soon after he started planning, his wife gave birth to their first child.
The plans were going to have to be put on hold. It was a lovely plan though. Babies just make everything way more complicated.
The Hole Grew Over
This hole was originally supposed to be a koi pond, but after the baby was born and the project was temporarily abandoned, the hole grew over.
One of this guy’s buddies suggested that he should make the hole bigger and turn it into a swimming pool.
The Project Begins
This guy thought a swimming pool would be a fantastic present for his new baby son. He didn’t grow up with a pool, and he always wanted one when he was a kid. This picture was taken in June 2010.
Looks like there’s a long way to go before this thing is completely built.
The Hole Is All Grown Up
Soon enough, that baby hole turned into an adult hole. It looks way bigger now! First, he dug the hole deeper to support the new foundation and to match the designs that he came up with.
They worked out where to place the drainage for the pool so that the base of the pool would be strong enough to support the water.
Pump It Up
Securing the pool’s pump to a concrete pad was the next step. This ensured that it would stay in position while they attached all the necessary piping.
You can’t have a pool without a pump, right? This project already looks way too hard for me.
Is It Deep Enough?
How deep is your pit, how deep is your pit, I really mean to learn, ’cause we’re living in a world of pools, breaking us down… Excuse my musical interlude; you know I had to do it to ’em.
Anyway, check out this hole! It must have been so hard to scoop all that dirt out.
Keep That Water In
He had to build a retention wall to keep the walls of the pool from collapsing. That’s what all of those sandbags are for.
I bet the next time you look at a swimming pool, you’re going to appreciate all the hard work that went into building it.
It’s All Coming Together
You have to build a skimmer tank into a pool so that dirt and debris can easily be cleaned out. All the proper equipment had to be put in place so the pool could be usable and clean all year long.
Approximately 350 sandbags were used in the making of this swimming pool.
Yup, There Are All Those Sandbags
Wow, exciting. I love sandbags. Now he’s adding a thing called rebar. It’s basically a bunch of steel rods that’s used to reinforce concrete from the inside.
Yes, he did cut and place all of that rebar himself (with the help of a few good friends).
If you have a pool in your backyard, it’s probably made with a fiberglass insert. If you want a shape that’s different from a standard pool shape, you need to do some things yourself.
This project required rebar and concrete to be sprayed directly into the hole to get the perfect shape.
Can You See The Rock Formation?
You have to make sure all the pool mechanics are in working order before you go pouring concrete or adding water. You need a water discharge tank, for example. I didn’t even know that water discharge tanks existed.
It’s a good thing someone with experience is building this swimming pool.
He’s Ready To Swim
This little guy is ready to swim in his brand new swimming pool. It’s going to take a little while longer though.
A project of this magnitude can take months to complete, especially when you’re mostly doing it on your own. He’s just going to have to be patient.
Spraying The Concrete
Now it’s time to actually make the base of the pool. If you don’t spray concrete properly, the walls of the pool can crack and become damaged.
It was time to call in the professionals. You need people who know what they’re doing to operate the machinery and make sure the concrete is the right temperature.
A Backyard In Chaos
This is what the backyard looked like from the outside while the pool was being built. It doesn’t look pretty— there are sandbags all over the place and the grass isn’t looking too hot.
Don’t worry though, this place is going to be an oasis in no time (ok, a lot of time).
Make It Pretty
After the biggest part of the concrete was sprayed, the workers added smaller features like rocks and stones to give the pool a natural look.
Synthetic pools that look synthetic are nice, but pools that look like rock formations are way more peaceful to look at.
It’s Shaping Up Nicely
After the concrete was poured, it needed some time to set and firm up. Even though the team worked to make the concrete look like real rock, actual rocks were also brought in to give the pool an even more authentic look.
Why make fake rocks when you can use real rocks?
Time To Add Water
The exterior of the pool is finally coming together. It looks fabulous and rocky and all of the necessary pool equipment is in place.
The only thing left to do now is clean up the surrounding grass and fill the pool up with water. It’s almost time to swim!
He’s Loving It
Well, I told you it was going to be an oasis. Look at this gorgeous pool! That little boy is loving his new backyard.
I wish I knew someone handy enough to build me a pool like this. Hard work and dedication really does pay off.
Dad Joins In The Fun
Even though he made this pool for his son and in memory of his dog, he’d be lying if he said he didn’t make it for himself too.
It’s time for him to enjoy the fruits of his labor. He’s definitely earned at least that much.
The Calm After The Storm
This backyard was so chaotic just a few months ago.
Now it’s totally calm and serene. It just goes to show that even when hope seems lost and your beautiful backyard is full of rubble, you can still pull yourself together and make everything turn out perfectly.