Friday, July 31, 2009

Frog Park Deux - 6/10

So this is the area where the swings are. Unfortunately they were big kid swings, so Holly had to sit on my lap to swing.This is where the creek ends into a little pond, on Warm days the kids run and play in the water.Isn't this the most beautiful park. It is so intricately carved, it looks like a tree house from Swiss Family Robinson or something.This is a little train, Holly had fun walking around in here back and forth through the door and around the engine.I love this Frog, it is carved into the cement on the pathway between the two FROG Parks. This little raccoon was carved on the underside of the play structure, I love all the hidden details.I can;t wait until Holly is big enough to go down this slide, isn't it amazing, It is so tall and way twisty.Underneath one of the play area's is this climbing spider web. In another secret area there is a tire swing. One of the things amazing about this park is how it is so Kid oriented, little secret passageways and places where adults don't really "fit"This is on the back side of the Play Structure I love this carved tree and all the butterflies and fish and a little whole for the little ones to climb into and have there secret club house.I peeked inside and there is even a carving of the back of the Raccoon and a little baby one too. The attention to detail is so amazing.We spent most of our time playing with the Giant Turtle in the Sand Pit. There were lots of fun left over buckets and shovels for Holly to use and can you believe that amazing mosaic.She enjoyed spinning the wheels on the dump truck, filling the containers with sand, and shoveling in the dirt.Joel climbed up onto the platform, surveying the park, to see what was all around and then took a peek through the train window.Of course I had to get a picture of Holly sitting in the window of the train engine too, she is my little engineer! Choo Choo.This is a wavy slide, Holly couldn't walk up to it on her own, or go down it by herself, but holding onto daddy she loved sliding down and had so much fun!I think Joel had fun too. Overall we had a blast at the park, I had fun seeking out all the little details, Holly had fun exploring and playing in the sand. The park was indeed too old for Holly, but we have been a few times and always had fun because there is room to run and explore even though I have to keep a really close eye on her.Holly goes down the long and wavy slide. Then she ges Up again, she goes down, and then she goes up again . . . Nothings gonna keep me down.....
Double Take - 1/2 - There are a ton of slides, but Holly needs our help to go down them, at least until she is older.

Swings - 0 - There are big kid swings, which Holly know knows how to swing on her belly, but there aren't any baby swings.

Surface - 0 - The ground is mostly dirt, tree bark, sand, but the sand is the dirt sand, and wood, which can cause splinters, concrete, grass, and then there are rocks int he water. So not the safest of "ground" but when she is a big kid it won't matter.

Shade - 1 - There is lots of shade and trees and even though there are sunny areas there are places to play under the structure too.

Climbing - 1/2 - There are lots of places for Holly to climb, although I can follow her everywhere and they aren't all safe.

Parking - 1 - There is street parking in a hidden loop behind the park and on Claremont under the highway, not a lot, but I think a fair amount of street spots.

Bathrooms - 0 - No

Distance - 1 - It is less then 10 minutes from our place in Temescal a cool "hip" neighborhood in Oakland.

Friends - 1 - There are always kids playing at the park, one time we went and met a mom with three little girls who all loved playing with Holly in the San Pit.

Fun - 1- Holly had a lot of fun, even if she couldn't participate in everything. This park was indeed a lot of fun.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Frog Park Part One - 6.5/10

We have been hearing about this great park in Temescal for ages and I never knew where it was or how to find it.Then one day I heard someone call it Frog park. . . This gave me a new search parameter, and Woo Hoo I found it! It seems as of the writing of this, the web page is not working... Upon researching further, I found that there were two Frog Parks in Temescal. It stands for "Friend's of the Greenway" There is a path with a creek that goes for several blocks between the first and the second park. These pictures are from the Mini-tot park. It is actually located just behind banana's and on the weekends they have a Farmer's Market near by at the DMV.You can follow the path and the creek and walk over to the other Frog park, which is designed for bigger kids. (That will be in tomorrow's post)Holly really enjoyed herself on this particular afternoon, especially the slide which she did several times, and having her Daddy to play with.She was able to do a little bit of climbing on the platforms. The park was all made with wooden play structures and reminded Joel of a park in Gainesville that he loves.We found out that it is the same designer as that park, as well as dreamland. There was one draw back of the park, and that is that there are no swings.Holly was able to entertain herself int he sand box. I think she had fun seeing this familiar toy in a new place.What is also so cool about the park is the intricate details every where like this little fish on the front of the play boat.Holly took an opportunity to spin the wheel, but it was like a flash and she was off to the next thing. There were several slides she could go down, but we held her had because they were a little steep in the incline.There was also some cool stuff for imaginary play that the older kids would enjoy like this nifty Saloon and bank combo. there was even a "teller" window.The park was also decorated with these beautiful individually hand made tiles from local kids.There was so much to look at every where you turned. This little mosaic sea horse was on the wall of the sand pit. it was pretty deep to get down in there, but she didn't mind and was very occupied.We had a lot of fun and decided that it was early enough for Daddy to take the stroller and walk over to the other Frog Park with Holly and I would meet them, so we got to try both out which is great.Slides - 1 - There were at least two that she could climb to and climb up and that we could help her go down.

Swings - 0 - No, sadly there were none.

Surface - 0 - I really want to give this a higher rating, but the tree Bark is my least favorite surface type, and even though I love the wooden structure, it isn't too hard for her to get splinters climbing. there was sand, but it was dirt sand rather then gravely sand.

Shade - 1 - There was a lot of trees and shady areas in the park.

Climbing - 1 - There was a lot of interesting things for Holly to climb on. There were many different levels to the structures and even the rocks on the creek when she gets older is something she could climb on.

Parking - 1 - The parking was not a dedicated lot, but some street parking. We had no problem finding a spot, but it was empty the day we went, so on a warm summer day it might be harder.

Bathrooms - 0 - No, there are no bathrooms as part of this park.

Distance - 1 - We are just a few minutes away here. Most likely not more then ten minutes as long as we don't hit a lot of street traffic, but its pretty close.

Friends - 1/2 - I think it would be a good place to meet friends and a lot of fun, but the time we went there were not any other kids playing.

Fun - 1- Holly did indeed have a lot of fun, climbing, sliding, and in the Sand Pit. It was definitely fun.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Tuesday, July 28, 2009


Holly is now known to make herself right at home when we head over to Chloe's. She is so familiar with the toys and the space that she sometimes acts like she owns the place!Here is Tristan "Pan Handling" for snacks. I got that term from the Feeding book I am reading, supposedly you are supposed to begin to set limits for toddlers and have them only eat snacks sitting down at select times. I'm not ready to make that transition yet, I'm happy if holly eats at anytime.I love this cute grumpy face that she is making. The Ball she is carrying vibrates when she shakes it. Holly used to be scared of vibrating toys, but it seems that she liked this one, I think its because she has a new admiration for Balls.Here is little Chloe chewing on her mommy's camera. One of her first words is "see" she says see, see, and wants Katherine to show her pictures of herself on the viewer. It is so very cute. In the background is Magnus whom we usually see at Swimming class so it is fun to see him in a different environment. He can give Holly a run for the money with his activity level, but then again I think he is about 20 months.There's Teagen in the corner having some milk. Her mom is amazing for bringing her, she is due to have a baby mid August and looks like she is about to burst, but we love seeing Rhonda and Teagan at the play dates.Here Joshua is playing with David. When Joshua wanders off, Holly takes his place. We had a rather large group this week and the kids had to climb all over each other to get from one toy to the next.Tristan and Maya are having a great time playing with the bubble gum machine here. This picture makes Tristan look so big. Maya is 18 months to his 12, but boys are usually bigger.
Maya's hair is a lot like Holly's it is strait in the front and has loads of curls in the back. I think her Mum trimmed her "bangs" though to keep them just above her ears, I think its a cute look on maya. But I am sorta fond of how Holly's hair flares out, its just like her Daddy's and she reminds me of a pixie.This is Jake. Last time we saw him he was only ten months old and we were at a park in Fremont, near where his mom lives. She newly joined this group, it was such a coincidence to see them again. He also brought with her a friend and her baby too.The kids had so much fun playing. Here is Gabriel reaching over to check out the activity center Holly is exploring, he is on the verge of waling here.. Just a few more weeks. As usual, our play date with Chloe was loads of fun!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Week 29: I Heart Faces: On The Beach

I decided to go with this photo rather then a more classic look because I love the expression in her eyes and the beautiful orange glow from her sand bucket. This was taken last weekend at Russian Gulch State Park when we were staying in a Beach House near Mendocino.

I had so many wonderful shots to choose from and I can only submit one, so I created a second post with all my "Runner's Up" if you want to see them, let me know if I choose the right one.

Week 29: On The Beach

I Heart Faces is a site where you can share photos and submit them into weekly contests, of faces, one for kids and one for adults.