playing close to home

Tuesday we had the opportunity to meet some friends for a playdate at Raccoon River Park in West Des Moines.

This park boasts a covered picnic area, sandy/rocky beach and roped-off swimming area, restrooms, play equipment and walking paths.  Even though we have lived in this area of the state for over 10 years, we had never been to this city play area.

Even though the skies were grey and clouds were threatening rain, we packed up our beach bags, some snacky snacks and headed out.

See the stormy sky in the top photo?  It opened up and poured on us for about 20 minutes but we just chose to wait it out and splash in the puddles it left in it's wake.

Because the park was deserted at the time, Maddi got in touch with her inner child.  She swung, ran, flew, and spun on the play equipment.  This act alone made my day . . . . seeing my oldest let loose and fancy free.

Ellie joined in as she does best by trying a little bit of everything.

My little go get 'em Ben was all over the place.  Good thing he had on such a bright shirt or I wouldn't have been able to keep track of him.

Soon the rest of the gang appeared and into the water they went. 

Too soon it was time to get out of the water to eat.  After refueling the kids headed back down to the beach and into the water.  As if on cue, the clouds rolled in and the rain came back to play.  We took this as our cue to pack up our gear and head home.

I love finding near new-to-us places to play.  We need to do it more often.


Joanne said...

I want to play too! Love the pics of the stormy coulds... I could almost feel the cool rain.


Fun pics, yay for new discoveries!

Lora said...

You guys have had one awesome summer. Can you adopt me?

Meri said...

what a lovely day! I agree...I want to be part of your family too!

Denise aka 'Mom of Bean' said...

What an awesome find!
I am a lover of swinging (wow, that sounds WRONG!) and will hop on a swing whenever I can. It's so freeing and fun...glad Maddi let herself 'go'!
That picture of Elli is stunning! She is so beautiful!
And Ben...fun lovin', go for it Ben! You need to find a way to bottle that energy so you can come visit again!! ;)

Mrs. Tuna said...

We have drive pretty far to get to any lakes or rivers to enjoy in Phoenix but it looks like you guys had an amazing time.

Roselady said...

I love putting together lists of local places I hear about and then I try to visit -- I just hate missing something exciting. Glad you had fun.

Football and Fried Rice said...

So sweet to see your Maddi PLAYING!

Let's go soon!

Holly said...

You are such an amazing photographer, Amy! How on EArth do you get Blogger to put all those pictures together? You are good! : ) Glad you guys had so much fun!

guess my word verification? mickyme! I think Mickey is calling me home! : )

Holly said...

hahahahahaha, Denise!! : ) that does sound bad! (I just saw that! )

sky0138 said...

beautiful pictures! So glad that you all had a great time despite the rain!

Leigh said...

Great pictures Amy! Awschumly cute kiddos!! I love stormy clouds, and I love puddles even more! I want to be adopted too! Pool is up and running and ready for a visit from YOU!! How cool would that be!? Don't you have some kind of urgent business you need to attend to in the Northwest Arkansas area? :) But really, I am seriously thinking we need a D fam meet up SOON! I am thinking St. Louis in the fall or winter and we could go cheer on the T1 hockey player that is on the St. Louis Blues. What do you think? And I want to swing with Denise! LOL! Like on a swingset. :)

Reyna said...

That looks like so much fun Amy! A lot of times...our days have one storm and then the rest of the day is wonderful for playing outdoors in. Glad it all worked out and the kids had a wonderful time.

Anonymous said...

I didn't know that place existed either until I signed up to run a 5K last fall and it happened to be around that lake. I loved the area and thought to myself I need to get my kids here. Thanks for the reminder! It will be on my to do list once we get back from vacation