Playgrounds, Parks, and Drugs, Oh My!

Our town doesn't have a lot, but they do have a lot of parks. School playgrounds as well as community parks in every neighborhood, filled with kids and moms enjoying the summer sun.

Well there are a couple of downfalls of these potentially local fun-lands. Like one park used to feature a cool water area. The Whale still exists at the park, but he's been washed ashore and is dry as a bone.
















The water fountain may or may not work depending on the direction of the centripital force bestowed upon the Earth and it's gravitational pull. Or the ozone. Or something.

Not that I'd let my kids use it anyway..."Do NOT put your mouth on the nozzle!" had flown out of my mouth a few hundred times. *shudder* We will bring our own drinks, thank you.

There are no bathrooms at most parks, but if there are, they're probably locked or utterly digusting. Score one for the non-potty-trained child.

Oh and then there's the graffitti. Super classy.























But overall if we're desperate, and the kids need some energy released, we can count on a few of the parks, for a little while at least. Here's a unique structure you don't see too often.






















The baby swings are still fun for K. When there isn't dog poop surrounding them and we have to stand on one foot while pushing. But then the smell overcomes us and then we leave.





















And the big kids still enjoy it too! If DQ gets to drive.



















And what she can't see won't hurt her.





















And how can you deny this face?



















Or this one??

56 supporters in group:

  1. HRH said...

    Great pictures the one of "what she doesn't know" is CLASSIC. OMG. That is so funny.

    I have never seen a contraption like that spider web thing. Seems like the kids would just hang themselves in there!

    I have given up on the not drinking public water fountain thingys. I am out of energy to yell.

  2. Chris said...

    I think this looks like an awesome park..my girls would love this. My eldest would love climbing the web structure that your son was on!

  3. Kate said...

    Love seeing those sweet cherub faces....you are so blessed! Thanks for sharing....kinda sorta cracking up about the park...merciful. But sounds like y'all make lemonade out of those lemons. :D Glad to see your fun summer adventures!! :)

    You are too sweet....

  4. schwartz said...

    That is seriously a play structure like no other! I wish we had one in my town...

    Adorable pictures! And great blog too!

  5. Christina said...

    Eeek, that is just too freaky. We're lucky to have a lot of great parks around here - including sprinkler parks that look just like the one here, except they actually have WATER! And no glass/graffiti/dog poop. Anyway, the photos are great, especially the last one!

  6. Amy said...

    Great pics!!!! That little one of yours is too dang cute - GEEZ!! I agree with the whole park situation. We went to our favorite park the other day and the graffiti made me sick to my stomach. There were graphic pictures and words like "I love crack" all over the place. Who are these kid's mothers? Will our kids do this stuff behind our back?? It scares me. Why do they have to express themselves this way? I just want my innocent kids to enjoy a carefree day at the park. Now, I have to explain to them why there is a picture of a penis drawn near the slide. SADNESS!!

  7. Gettysburg Mom said...

    I sometimes fear I will lose my voice from repeating, "Ewwww. Please don't play in the sandbox." When your best hope is that cats were the only one using it...

  8. Ramblin' Red said...

    heheehe...oh the parks dilemma. I totally agree with the score for the non-PT'd kiddo - I hate parks bathrooms. And ours are always steel toilets with concrete walls, so flushing is a sensory nightmare with LMNOB. I make them go RIGHTBEFORE we leave at home, so as to avoid them as much as possible.

    Pictures? Brilliant as always :)

  9. The Hammond Family said...

    I think we have 2 pretty good parks in our town, and BOTH have bathrooms! I still remember M peeing against the fence at one of those parks!

  10. smiles4u said...

    Great pictures of the kiddo's having fun...and how could you deny that face...simply sweet!

  11. Mel said...

    We have some playgrounds around here and they are actually well taken care of which is nice. There isn't anything better than hanging out at the park on nice days. You always have such beautiful pictures! Do you use a Mac? I always wanted to add the watermark on my pix, but can't figure out how to do it. One of my friends uses watercolors like yours, but she has a Mac and I don't which was why I asked.

  12. Sue said...

    #1st- OMG "Twilight Zone!"

    2nd- how cute are your kids. Mine always whine that's it's too HOT to go to the playground. (it usually is).

  13. Jenny said...

    Great pics (as usual), and compared to the playgrounds strewn around Dover, DE...that one wins a prize! Hence the pimped-out mucho money playground from Sam's in our backyard...we don't even have to leave home, and I am CERTAIN we will not come across used rubbers or syringes. Peace of mind, I tell you.

  14. Tenakim said...

    There's no way you can deny that face! I can't stand when playgrounds reek of dog poop- we used to live in a "yuppy" town where there were "dog parks"- that worked better- too bad about the graffiti... well, at least you have a contact now- jk!

  15. Jill said...

    Beautiful photos... always love them!

    The parks there are very similar to the ones we had in Israel. The closest park to our house had way too much graffiti and broken beer bottles in the sand... clearly not a place I was taking 2 little girlies.

    No bathrooms either... but then again, peeing in public is no big deal. It took me almost 3 years before I let the girls "go" outside and in a relatively inconspicuous place. Once we started letting them go at the park, they "always" had to go when we got there.

    The problem now that we're back in the States is reminding them that they can now use a toilet.

  16. Tasha said...

    I just had to comment to tell ya I am totally diggin your new music...I'm bouncing to the train song right now. And Forever Young was my senior class song! Makes me feel old, but in a good way. :P XOXO Your blog looks fab, btw.

  17. Sarah McBride said...

    Hey I need drugs. Why did you blur out that phone numbner???

  18. Kelly said...

    We have a few ghetto parks near by that we frequent when we are deseperate. In my complex I manage, anyone can walk through and come out the other side on a different street. Just the other day the kids were riding there scooters and such while I was watering the plants. Lily came over and said "Mom, you know when sometimes you give me medicine you use that little tube thingy? Well there is a bunch over there by the laundry room" WTF. I went over there, and scattered all over the ground were used hypodermic needles and weird little baggies. God I wish we had security gates so not just anyone can walk through my place. Its frightening. Its not like I live in a crappy part of town either..I guess this kinda stuff can happen anywhere, but its awful when little kids see that. Thank god she had the sense not to pick it up and bring it to me.

  19. Amy-Happy Momma said...

    Beautiful children and beautiful photography!

    Happy WW!

  20. ali said...

    Ooooo, I love your daughter's tote!

    Great pictures--looks like they had fun!

  21. Mom Taxi Julie said...

    Ah don't you love the park! It's been too hot to go to the park here, although we do have one of those water fountain park places not too far away. My favorite at the park is when you get teenagers making out inside the play structures. Oh and when you get out of the car and see a used condom on the grass. BLECH.

  22. Staci said...

    seriously could we be anymore alike??? Missy Elliot?? YOU ROCK!!!! Or YOU POP AND LOCK!!!! Or "shawty yous the shizzle" hahaha okay ill stop being a nerd....

    Hey I came up with a fun and exciteing way to fogive, and wanted to invite you to check it out and participate!!! Heres the link:

    "real raggin wednesdays" http://theloalbos.blogspot.com/2008/06/real-raggin-wed-first-rag.html

    and rag on sista!!

  23. ciara said...

    in the town i live in, each 'village' has it's own park and school...well, the first two do anyways. the third village won't have their school until next year (k-8). we just had our 'master community' large park open and it has a water feature (the water just shoots up out of the ground from different spouts), and some of the similar playground equipment in your pictures. i'm very worried that it will get trashed so quickly either by the older kids here or the neighboring city. they have little dog poop stations where you can get the bags and then dispose of the poop, but some people don't use it. there's also plaques in the cement that say, regarding the water feature, the water is chemically treated..DO NOT DRINK. no dogs allowed in water feature. so far i haven't seen anyone drink it, but people do take their dogs through it and some older kids skateboard/bike through it (no respect, i tell ya). the biggest thing that younger kids do, mostly boys i might add, is sit on the one major spout or have it shooting up their shorts. i don't get the thrill of that. we also have a bathroom at that park...hate to see what that will be like in a few months. *shudder*

    anyways, your photos are 'brill' as usual :)

  24. LiteralDan said...

    That whale looks pretty cool. We have a couple parks that have abandoned concepts, too, including what looks like it was a cool water play station that is now filled with sand out of protest by the neighborhood kids (or maybe that's why they shut it down in the first place).

  25. Heather at A Boy, A Girl, & A Pug said...

    That park would sort of freak me out. But they seem to be having fun despite no water and dog poop!

  26. THE Stephanie said...

    Too cute... love your blog!

  27. Clare said...

    Jen, I love your commentary...so funny! Luckily there are just one or two parks that are a little shady, but most are pretty nice. I think they have been re-doing them over the past couple of years. The pictures are still adorable. I love the one in the tunnel. Love, Clare

  28. Angie said...

    The pics are super adorable. Well, the drug graffiti isn't so cute, but your kids are!!!! After reading your water paragraph...you totally need to have your blog checked for its reading level. I think you have earned genius status, my friend.

  29. Brittany said...

    Gosh your kids are gorgeous, and thanks for blurring out the drug phone number, we could have crank called them a bit to teach them a lesson:)

  30. Not Just Any Jen said...

    Great pics! I love the parks around here. My older two do great now, but it is still tough with the toddler. No relaxation for Mommy.

  31. Lisa said...

    Our park that's within walking distance is one of our favorite energy release spots too!

    Cute pictures!!!

  32. momto2boys said...

    Gotta tell ya...one of my biggest issues with our city is the way they let any looser ruin our parks. At Gabilan Hills the dog people come on the weekends and the dogs poop everywhere. I've even gotten verbal with some of these people and you know I love and have dogs. Frustrating! Fun pix of the kids.

  33. Ali Blogger said...

    My fave is the 2nd to last one! What a doll! You are an AWESOME AWESOME photographer!

  34. Darcie said...

    Ah, the joys of public parks.

    The tunnel slide picture is adorable as is the shirt your little one is wearing. I'd take that in my size!

  35. Ruth said...

    I am jealous of your camera! Awesome pics!

  36. *Becky* said...

    Hey, why did you blur that number out I was going to call it?

    ROFLMAO

  37. Shannon said...

    OMG, those pigtails are the CUTEST thing ever - how sweet is she? Those are great pics, although I'm sorry about the non-water whale and drug advertising graffiti . . .

  38. Sogeshirtsguy said...

    Looks like your little ones had a great time. Adorable pics.

  39. tollesons4him said...

    You have the most beautiful children besides mine of course. I love the pigtails...

  40. Rebecca a.k.a. Mum said...

    Thankfully we have ALOT of pretty darn good parks on base here, and they tend to keep them clean and in good shape....now the ones out in town - that is a whole other story ::Shudder::

    Looks like you had a fun time at the park, love the pics of the ever adorable Mizz K, what an adorable top she is wearing!!

    Great photos in general, I like that you always change them up a bit (b&w etc).

  41. Mrs. S said...

    Found you through Insane Mama. Absolutely love the blog...your kiddos are too cute and your pictures are really beautiful.

  42. Wendi said...

    Sorry about the park.
    Atleast it provided you lots of blog fodder.
    And fabulous photos.
    Could your kids be any cuter?

  43. Kristen Andrews said...

    that park is way nicer than any parks we have! My kiddo dropped out of mom and tot swim since their heater broker! spoiled huh!

  44. Cheryl Lage said...

    Omigosh! Just popped over from Tonya's bestowment of love your way, and I LOVE your blog too!
    (and ALSO frequently select wines based on the artistic merit of their labels)

    Man, this whole graffiti in the park scenario REALLY stinks...when I chaperoned a field trip for one of my twins' kindergarten class the last week of school the graffiti in the bathroom indicated that if one was interested in having sex with the writer and her boyfriend to please call.

    The kid I escorted to the bathroom asked me what it said, and I back-pedalled to a "A girl is hoping to meet friends" but all I could imagine was one of my kids (who are reading) coming home and asking me what that meant.

    eek.

    Long diatribe for a first comment, sorry! But I do love your blog! Will be back often!

  45. Jen said...

    I'm glad to know that we aren't the only ones with yucky parks. Still looks like you had a great time! That's all that matters, right?

    Hey, why'd you blur the number for the drugs? I could have used some after the day I had with my kids.

  46. Marla said...

    this is one of the scary things for me about raising kids today... freaks me out...
    OK... your kids are so adorable... I can see they get their cuteness from you... but I'm sure hubby is HOT... ever posted about him?

  47. Smart A$$ Mom said...

    ah, dangers at the park. Your kids are too cute!

  48. Jen said...

    Awesome Blog! You take GREAT pictures Visiting by way of SITS.

  49. Meg said...

    I think I want to play in that park--and have some Ben & Jerry's afterwards.

    Great pics!

  50. Beth said...

    Your kids are beautiful, I love that DQ is carrying her bag around the park. That's great!

  51. Vicki said...

    Jen, I'm so sorry I haven't been around much - life has just been crazy!!! But I still do a drive by on your blog everyday and still am loving it!! :)
    LOVIN the pictures you post. You take beautiful shots!! The one of K in the slide - OMG - I could just EAT HER UP!!!! :)
    Just wanted you to know I'm still here, even if you don't "hear" me!!
    ~ hugs

  52. Rob said...

    I work for a company that makes web climbers, similar to the one shown as well as many other designs. Someone commented they thought the kids would hang themselves, but of course we design the games to be safe and fun. Kids love them!!
    Write to your city Parks Department and request cable climbers, they are gaining in popularity but some cities are still stuck in the old ways.

  53. Maggie said...

    Your pictures are beautiful!

  54. Janel said...

    Oh, I couldn't deny it one bit!

  55. Corey~living and loving said...

    Lots of great shots here. My fav by a mile is the swing shot....love the empty swings swinging. soooooooooooooo cool!

  56. Rochelle said...

    FIFTY FIVE COMMENTS???? You are the QUEEN OF THE BLOG! :+)

    I have a bet with my hubby regarding the whale fountain. I am about to LOSE big time. Ugh.

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