Monday, July 20, 2015

28/52: A Weekly Photo Series

The kids and I had one of those picture-perfect summer nights last week when we met up with my friend Sarah and her little ones at the community splash pad in Eden Prairie.

I was a bit of a splash pad skeptic before this, after Tory and I visited one two years ago. There were so many big kids at that park back then and Tory was petrified of the commotion. Differently, this splash pad was nearly empty on Tuesday evening around 4:00pm. The park was nice and clean, and there was also a play ground and beach next to it. Such a neat place!

It took Tory and Aden a few minutes to warm up to the idea of running through the sprinklers at first, but once they did, they had so much fun. Every time a stream of water hit Aden unexpectedly, he'd pucker up his face with a look of distaste and then laugh with delight instead.

Sarah and I packed picnic dinners for each of our kids, and together they alternated between splashing in the water, climbing on the playground equipment and taking a break in the shade to eat their meals. My heart was filled with so much happiness that evening. Warm sunshine; good friends; lots of laughter -- now, this is summer.

Later, Sarah and I walked the kids down to Round Lake beach, about 100 feet away from the splash pad. It was the perfect area for kids with lots of flat sand and a swimming area roped off for safety. There was even a lifeguard on duty.

Tory has been so timid about swimming in the lake at our cabin this summer, but for some reason felt completely comfortable being in the water with her friends. The power of peer pressure! This time, it was a good thing.

This splash pad / beach is about 30 minutes away from our house, so I knew we'd have to scoot off eventually for bedtime. I pried my kids away from the water around 6:15pm, and Tory cried the entire (and I mean entire) drive home because she was so upset about leaving. Life's hard sometimes, kid. I was sad to see the evening end, too. We'll definitely be back to Round Lake Splash Pad again.

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