Friday, February 6, 2015

February in Arizona


 This week we went to RiverView Park in Mesa with my mom.   We had a picnic lunch and Paige enjoyed the short picnic tables made just for kids.   I enjoyed not worrying about her falling off the bench.

Claire LOVED the zip line and spent quite a while zipping back and forth.
 
Claire and Joy like the disc swing but Paige will NOT stand for any of it.
 

Paige's favorite thing at this park is the cement slide. 
 Joy likes it too. 
 The whole design of this slide is absurd.  There are no steps of any kind leading to the top so young children have to scale loose rock up a pretty steep slope to get to the top. 
  Tiny rock avalanches cause them to slip and fall and unless they are very determined or have a lot of help they'll never make it.   Then all their hard work is rewarded by a slow, high-friction ride down hot cement.   
Look how fun it is though!

The best part of this park (at least to Claire) is the 50ft climber.  
She was very brave and went as high as she was physically able. The ropes get too far apart for her to reach at the top.   I went to the top and it was quite difficult and unnerving.
 It would have helped if I had both my hands at full strength though.

View from the top
 

There are other, smaller climbers
that are pretty fun.   Joy is just now starting to like these types of things.  
 

 After a while we were all HOT.   We decided to let the girls take off their shirts and play in the splash pad.

They were so excited.   Paige loved it!
 


 Even Joy warmed up to it after awhile.


 Poor Paige was tuckered out after all the excitement. 

 A little more climbing and relaxing in the shade and we called it a day.


Saturday, January 31, 2015

Booster!

We finally got Claire a booster seat! She is so excited. (and Joy is a little jealous)
 
We got her the Britax Parkway as I am still not ready to give up the side impact protection.  The whole back part does come off though so it can be a regular booster seat if we want it to. I guess I never realized how constraining her old, 5-point harness seat was. They whole time we were driving she kept exclaiming

"Look I can look out the window!  I've always wanted to look at the window!"

"I can touch Joy!  I can touch the floor!"

"Oh my goodness I can look behind us!

I just can't believe she is so big!  

Friday, January 30, 2015

Rainy Play Date

Yesterday we got together with my friend Jenni and her 3 girls.  This time we met at Eastmark Park instead of at one of our houses. 

Let's just say I was overly optimistic about the weather.  

The girls had fun playing in the rain but it was cold and soon the wind started picking up and the rain was steady.

Paige and Quincy were little pals!  Usually they just look at each other and coexist but they seemed to have enjoyed each others company this time.  
 

They were the official slide dryers.  Quincy used her legs while Paige scooped up water with her hands and slurped it up. Yum!



 Poor Paige was literally shaking she was so cold (but not complaining - throwing rocks in the lake is too much fun to notice the cold)

After a picnic dinner, we were all wet and freezing so we decided to cut the park trip short and head to Starbucks for some hot chocolates.

It was all of the girls' first time with their own Starbucks drink.  It was a picture worthy event but we have yet to get a picture of these 4 that is "good".


The other customers in Starbucks probably loved us.  Nothing like a nice quiet evening at the coffee shop with your book, laptop and 6 overly excited little girls.

What fun we had!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Park Exploring

I am SO enjoying this warm winter.  I couldn't live in any other state.  Because it's been so beautiful outside lately, we've been going to parks often.
 
 A little while ago my mom discovered a new one
 so we took the girls one day and it was so much fun.  

Not because of the play equipment  - because there were only climbers and a tire swing.
 Which were fun, don't get me wrong.
 But because of the lake with a walkway going across is and the huge cement amphitheater steps to climb on.
View from the bottom.
View from the top.

We had the most enjoyable time there, climbing up and down the steps, trying to skip rocks on the lake and watching turtles pop their heads out of the water.  There was also a dog park on the opposite shore of the lake so the girls got a kick out of watching the dogs jump in the water to retrieve balls for their owners.

It inspired me to try and visit a new park at least once a week and see what kind of fun can be found.  We'll never know unless we go out and look for it.





Sunday, January 18, 2015

Butterfly Wonderland

Last week Josh's mom took us to Butterfly Wonderland up in Scottsdale.   Being butterfly enthusiasts already, we were quite excited.  It was so neat!   First they had us watch a movie.  The theater room was just like a regular movie theater,  just smaller and much cleaner....and without the smell of popcorn.  They gave us glasses since the movie was in 3d.  Wow!  I really liked the movie!  I have never been impressed with 3d stuff before but this 15 minute documentary that followed the life/migration of a monarch butterfly was seriously cool. (mostly because of the 3d)  The girls were literally trying to catch butterflies that appeared to be inches from their faces.  Even Paige wore the glasses and was content watching most of it.  She has a new found wanderlust so I had to take her out. 

After that we went to a room that had hundreds on chrysalides, cocoons, pupae (whatever you prefer to call them)  It was AMAZING. 
 
Being familiar with the process from my mom's butterflies I think I appreciated the variety more than most people.

Then we went to the atrium.  (and a little word of advise - it is very warm and moist in there so if you go, wear shorts and short sleeves,)  The girls were concerned that the butterflies wouldn't land on them but as you can see they had nothing to worry about.











The littler girls got tired and hungry (this picture is evidence of that)
 so we stopped for a snack at the cafe inside
  and then found that there was also a small stingray exhibit
 I love Paige's face,  she was so excited but didn't know why.
 Paige prefers fish over butterflies.

 We went back to the atrium for a little while longer but it was getting late and at 4:30 the butterflies stop flying around and eat so there was not as much action.




We had a wonderful time!  It was definitely a worth while trip that I would recommend.