Park Passports

I am not one of those moms who has tons of fun plans for the summer. In fact, I have hardly any. But I knew I needed to get started on some sort of agenda to keep us from going insane at home. I read about an idea in a magazine, and I stole it. It’s called the “Park Passport.” Every Tuesday, we’re going to a different park around town. I’ll take pictures, and as soon as we get home, Carson (with some help from me and Sydney) will review the park and its features, then give it a rating. This was our first venture! The park got 4 out of 5 stars. I took one star away automatically for not having any restrooms.
Carson took the star away because there was no big slide for older kids. Yes, this was definitely not your mother’s play structure.

This park gives me the impression of an architect who was bucking the system.
The boys had fun in this little spinning bucket (And I gave it a try! Somehow no photos of that experiment have survived.) But later our friend Cason got going too fast and was a little worse for wear.

What is this? I do not know. But it provided some fun moments.

After the fact, we learned that this little skateboard thingy can slice your fingers. Good to know!

Then the next day, we had an unplanned park visit when we went north to meet up with the cousins and “cousins.” I noticed that I take more pictures of girls than boys. So much for gender equality. But also? They hold still more often. But not always:

I know I say it a lot, but Sydney is ENAMORED of her younger cousin! This girl will be 16 and Syd will still call her Baby Kaitlyn. The aunties were reminding me that this is good! She’s ready for a little brother or sister!

You have no idea what IDIOTS Steph and I were making of ourselves (OK, especially Steph) to try to get Kaitlyn to smile. We were calling her Stonewall Kaitlyn. This was what we got:

The big boys played Star Wars…

….and ran a lot….

….and ran some more.

I cannot tell you how many pictures I took of my nephew, Jack! This kid NEVER. STOPS. (Moving or talking.) I finally got one of his face, even though it’s shaded by his sweet Nike hat. He is so stinkin’ adorable!

Aaaand, just in time for her birthday next week, a new pic of my photogenic middle child. I remember when we were newlyweds, a slightly older couple befriended us and had us over to dinner a few times. They had an adorable little redhead preschool daughter. Trent said she was so cute–I bet they have a hard time disciplining her. Her dad just smiled and said: “Not really.” Hahaha! Oh, this little angel has some tricks up her sleeve, let me tell you.


  1. We have a weird park like that by our house, too. Henry will not go down the slide b/c it’s like inverted or something and you have to have super-acrobatic balance to go down it. He enjoys the climbing though! Cute pics!

    And seriously, Kaitlyn! Making us work for it! 😉

  2. Love the Park Passports idea, am definitely stealing it from you!

    Can I also suggest chalk painting? Maybe you’ve done it before, but if not, its fun and can kill a morning. Great for days when it might rain later, so the driveway can be washed down. Here’s a link to a recipe:

    I might have to post a question on FB as for fun summer activity ideas, because I think it’ll be needed this summer!

  3. Sweet Jen,
    This takes me back to park time years ago only it was my hubby who had a passion of discovery for as many parks as we could find and go to. One thing we found was the neighborhood parks hidden in the developments that were amazing.The best part was the memories we have. Someday they will say”remember the time” with a big smile on there face about all the parks they got to go to.
    Also… these pictures say it all! They are all such beautiful kids!!!! Great picture taking. Always grateful for your time in sharing. You bless me(:

  4. This is a great idea! I just wish we could do it here. We avoid parks like the plague since our morning lows are in the 85-90. Ugh. But maybe we’ll have to do a ‘pool passport’. Hmmm…good idea. And I can’t believe your kids are wearing HOODIES in the summer. Such different extremes. 🙂

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