Monday, May 12, 2014

Summer FUN! (UPDATED)


There are so many FREE fun things to do in DFW this summer!  The free splash parks are opening up, outdoor concerts, fireworks, petting farms, cheap summer movies... you will not be bored this summer!

I realize that I have been neglecting my blog lately.  I have been so very busy!  In fact, I really don't even have time to write this, but I feel I owe it to my blog followers to post a few things that they can do this summer that they may not know about.  So here it is, all slapped together and hurried.

Since I will be on hiatus for a while, I will tell you some of the ways I find these great places and events to go to.  Not all are recurring, and that is usually what I have on my blog.  So, (and I realize some of these are repeats), check the calendars at these sites, like them on Facebook, and subscribe to the newsletters of the following sites.  I highly suggest checking out the calendars.  When I am tired of the places on my blog, I go to these sites, and find out what is going on the next day.  No one site has everything, but I have seriously unlocked a wealth of information for you. I will also continue to add information to this blog post as I find it.

*****UPDATE*****
The Preschool Playtime at the Grapevine CAC is no more.  They have relocated for a short time during construction of a new facility, and I do not know if it will return after.  BUT!  I did find out about another toddler/preschool playtime for ages 2-5 at the Coppell Rec Center for $1 on Tuesdays from 9-10a.m.  So, maybe check that place out. 

**********************************
InTheLoopKids -- I am proud to say that I am a contributor.  


Family E-Guide

Around Town Kids - Says Frisco, McKinney, Allen, but lists events all over the metroplex as well.  

AND - if you haven't already, LIKE my Facebook Page.  I am always posting free and family friendly, low cost events and places to visit.

FREE OUTDOOR CONCERTS!
Plano, DentonDallas, Flower Mound, Coppell, Irving, McKinney, Lewisville, North Richland Hills, Allen, Highland Village,  Fort Worth1 Fort Worth2, Fort Worth3, Fort Worth4,  The Colony, Arlington, Mansfield... And the list goes on.  I have provided links that will take you to the sites, there is one near you!  
Fort Worth3-Kids under 10 are free
Hurst, Bedford, Euless, Watauga, Roanoke, Keller, and Southlake click HERE


FREE SPLASH PARKS!

So I am giving you the link to an article by DFWChild that lists 21 FREE splash parks in the area.  Sundance Square Plaza was not included because this article is from last year, so I included it.  Like I always say... Check websites and social media for closings.  ALWAYS.

Click here for 21 Free Spray Parks

Sundance Square Plaza - Located in the heart of downtown Fort Worth!  We go to Fort Worth often, so my next blog post will probably include a picture of Jacob splashing his little heart out!

**UPDATE** More Splash Parks Found
Belo Garden Downtown Dallas - just found out about this one.

More splash parks around Dallas HERE

Splash Island Euless  - scroll down to see info

Haltom City Spraygrounds

Roanoke- Cannon Parkway Park


More things to do this summer:


This calendar of events from the Dallas Public Library that has a ton of fun things to do for kids of all ages!

Kid Fishing at Bass Pro

Castle Hills monthly event

Fritz Park FREE Petting Farm - June & July only, closed Mondays **Great Place!  Blog post soon to come!

Urban Air Trampoline Park - Indoor trampoline park in Southlake

Burger's Lake - Not free, but cheaper than a lot of water parks.  Cool Place!

Surf N Swim - another inexpensive water park on the other side of the metroplex from Burger's Lake

$2 Kids Movies at Studio Movie Grill
and even more cheap summer movies HERE 

Half-Price Books Storytime! - Of course I would sneak a storytime in here!!  Half Price Books in Arlington does storytimes on Sundays!  Lincoln Square and Four Corners.

Watch the planes take off at DFW Airport from the Founder's Plaza observation area.  Map HERE

Fort Worth Food Truck Parks - Clearfork & Fort Worth Food Park live local bands and food!

The new children's play area, "Studio A", at the Kimbell Art Museum.  FREE.  Also they have a drop-in program on Saturdays and a monthly story time on Tuesdays.

Willow Bend Free Summer Fun Thursday Nights

Free Outdoor Movies, Cheap Screenings and MORE!

Discounted Days at the Dallas Arboretum

Check your local library!!
Many libraries have summer programs and events such as Lego clubs, movies, game days, "science camps", art classes, crafts and more! Links to all libraries in Tarrant, Dallas, Denton and Collin Counties can be found HERE - just click on the name of the library.
----------------------------------------------------

Please use the calendars and visit my facebook page, as there is no one site that has everything.  I just want my readers to have access to the amazing and fun things to do that are right under their noses!!


If you have anything to add-- please do so in the comments!  We love to share our knowledge!  I will also be updating this post periodically.  I am always finding new things, but right now don't have the time to make new pages or posts.


Friday, February 7, 2014

Lots of Fun at The Galleria Play Area!

Galleria Dallas
Children's Play Area


*You can find family friendly events as well at the Galleria -- click here


We made it to yet another stop on our wish list, the Galleria Dallas play area.  The play area lives on the 3rd floor near the bathrooms, and as a plus, there are also little bathrooms with little potties for little fannies. These little potties were perfect for my little rug rat!  The bathrooms are very busy and I didn't want to be a weirdo taking pictures of a toilet so I didn't get one.  There is also a changing station right outside the little mini bathrooms.  Enough about that and on with the play area...

Think of a Cancun inspired theme, with plenty of tunnels and bridges and things to climb on.  The trees and snakes, frogs and parrots, it was very tropical looking, with the Mayan pyramids to make it seem like you are in Cancun.  To me at least. Jacob especially like climbing on the pyramid, and of course going through the "nunnels".  

Jacob's absolute favorite attraction was none other than the JEEP.  Like Collin Creek Mall, there was a soft play Jeep, although this one is not stuck in the mud.  My little dinosaur played all over the place here, but the Jeep was 'where it's at' as far as he was concerned.  

With everything there is to climb on, in, or through here, Jacob didn't lose interest and try to walk around the mall.  In fact, when I tried to take him for a stroll so that I could check it out, he ran back into the play area.  So that is where we stayed until it was time to go.  

We arrived before noon, and Jacob had eaten his lunch on the way there.  I did that on purpose.  I have noticed that, for the most part, play areas are not as busy at lunchtime, (go figure). I feed him before we go or on the way if we are taking transit, and arrive a little before noon.  The Galleria play area is by far the busiest play area I have been to, but when lunch time hit, it was a ghost town.  I am not saying that this is the only time to go, or that it will always be slow at that time, but it is your best bet.  That goes for pretty much any play area.



I will also say that it looks clean, like Collin Creek Mall.  The one at Ridgmar Mall looks like it has seen better days, but it  still remains one of my favorite to visit.  

I would like to see the play area at Valley View Center, I have heard that mall is slow like Ridgmar Mall so the play area doesn't get crazy.  We will see.  For now, I have several other places on our wish list that I would like to knock out first.  Perhaps we can finally hit up the WOW Bus, or the zoo, or even the Train display at Children's Medical Center.  We will see...



Saturday, February 1, 2014

Fort Worth Botanic Gardens

Fort Worth Botanic Gardens          FREE
                                                                      ** General Admission
Yes I know, we went to the Botanic Gardens in the dead of winter.  It's free, (we did not visit the Japanese Gardens or Conservatory), and why not?  The weather decided that it wanted to cooperate with us on a beautiful Saturday, and I wanted to be outside with Jacob.  There were lots of other families there as well, having picnics, playing frisbee, taking pictures, and walking the trails.

It was like going to a giant park where Jacob could just walk and explore everything.  He got himself a stick to hold and we just walked around. We walked in big open fields, along paths, under trellises, (that Jacob thought were tunnels, so he kept walking under them saying, "nunnel, nunnel"), along the nature boardwalk, (sorry no pics of it) and stopped to take in the water features located near the rose garden.

I don't have a whole lot to write about for this outing, it was just a nice peaceful day for my son and I to enjoy each other's company.  We took transit of course.  It was packed since it was opening weekend of the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo, and I felt fortunate to have snagged myself a back corner seat.  I am not a big fan of random strangers' crotches in my face.  

We did not get to hit up the WOW Bus like I wanted to.  I mean, how did I think I was going to accomplish that?  The Botanic Gardens is an entire day in itself.  I will make it there, though. 
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
*I would like to note that I run into people some times that are just planning to ride the train and don't really know what to do once they get to downtown. (We are talking about FW right now).  Here are some things to do:

From ITC STation Take Molly the Trolley to Sundance Square Plaza -- the Trolley stop is actually on Jones St.  Get off the train and walk straight to the street, (pass the busses), and you will see the flag for the Trolley Stop.
*The driver will tell you when you are there, and will point out other major stops

Fort Worth Public Library just a few blocks from Sundance Square
*You may even catch a story time

*A separate trolley goes from ITC Station straight to the Stockyards on Saturday, Or take the 1 bus to N. Main and get off at Ellis and Exchange
*Cattle Drive every day at 11:30am and 4:00pm
*There is live music at Stockyards Station, and on Sundays, the Cowtown Opry Performs at 2:00pm
**Cattlepen Maze $5 per person
**Petting Zoo $2 per person 
**Pony rides (Both petting zoo and pony rides should not be expected on days with yucky weather)
**Rodeo Zone $6 per person
**Other Events -- Check site

Fort Worth Botanic Gardens 
Bus #7 or #57 from ITC Station
*Free for General Admission, Conservatory is $2 per person, Japanese Gardens are $5 per person

Fort Worth Botanical Research Institute
Bus #7 or #57 from ITC Station
*First Saturdays with Storytime and more, also check calendar for other events

Fort Worth Museum of Science and History
Bus #2 or #57 from ITC Station
*NOT free, but worth every penny, check website for details, as prices differ depending on what you want to do there.

*The Trolley will take you right to it

Fort Worth Zoo
Shuttle from ITC on Saturdays
or take the #7 Bus from ITC Station at least 1/2 mile walking involved
*Half price on Wednesdays

Log Cabin Village
#7 Bus from ITC Station
* FREE for 3 & under
$4.50 4-17 and 60+
$5 for 18+
$4 per person for groups over 10

Near Sundance Square


Ridgmar Mall
#2 Bus from ITC Station.  Takes you directly to the mall.
*Play area, coin operated kiddie rides, fountains

The WOW Bus
#4 or #6 Bus from ITC Station
*Words on Wheels -- if you are a book lover







Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Fort Worth Stockyards!

Finally!! The Stockyards Cattle Drive and the Petting Zoo were on my wish list of family things to do, and we finally did it!  I have been to the Stockyards numerous times, but this was the first time I went for family fun.  We had a fantastic day and I have some more terrible pictures to share.

We took the train, because that in itself is part of the fun. You can take the Stockyards Trolley on Saturday only, so we did that on the way back as we missed it when we got to downtown.  We farted around at the Sundance Square Plaza since there is plenty of room for Jacob to release some wiggles before we head to Northside.  Not much to do there though, no events or anything, and we got bored quickly.  The Central Branch of the Fort Worth Library is just a few blocks away so we hoofed it.  What a great children's area they have!  Blaine and Jacob played together for a while, until I started to read to Jacob and Blaine went off to explore more of the library.  As an advocate for early literacy, I was delighted to see that they have early literacy kits and backpacks~
little story books with little puppets and little books and little instruments~ and if I wasn't about to travel across town on a bus/trolley, I would have checked one out.  

It was chow time, so we grabbed a spot and ate our little lunch.  Walking back to the spot where we could catch the trolley, I saw the bus that takes you to the Stockyards and we hopped on it instead.  I was full and ready to sit and relax. I guess the kids weren't so full as they snacked almost the whole way.  My little piggies!


Once we got to the Stockyards I put Jacob in the sling and we made our way towards the petting zoo.  We were almost at our destination when we heard music.  There is an area at the stockyards that is covered, and it runs along the railroad tracks.  This is Stockyards Station.  A band was playing, and of course Jacob was squirming around like crazy because he wanted to get down and dance... so we made a little detour.  He stood right in front and stared for a while, saying 'mum' (drum) and 'gee-tah' (guitar) pointing and laughing.  Then it was time to dance to some Willie Nelson.  He stomped and wiggled and waved his arms and laughed  After a while he wanted to walk around so we roamed for a while until I decided it was safe to leave and head to the petting zoo.

The sign I saw as we walked up said that the petting zoo was $2 per person.  I was instantly perturbed about this, as the website itself and several other sources say that it costs $1 per person.  I mean, I know it is only a dollar, but still, update your website.  Come on.  **It has since been changed**    Anyhow I paid it of course, as we were not going to miss out on this wish list item.  


I certainly think it was still well worth the $2 a person.  Blaine made instant friends with all the animals, they loved him, (they always do).  Jacob on the other hand, spent about 15 minutes running up to them, screaming and running away.  When he finally chilled out, he was able to pet the animals and quit freaking them out.  Blaine got sneezed on by the camel and I just about ralphed.  Yuck!  I think I could gag just remembering it.  Snack time came and it was time to go.  A squirt of hand sanitizer and we were off.  



4:00 finally rolled around and the street was cleared for the cattle drive.  On any given day there is quite a crowd for this event.  These amazing beasts led by cowboys on horseback are quite a sight for the crowd of tourists snapping photos and locals alike.  It doesn't last very long, but it is still worth seeing.  


Well, the cattle drive was over, Jacob was cranky and Blaine looked like he could pass out standing up.  We hit the trolley, the train, and then back to my wonderful home where I put Jacob down to sleep and sat on my butt for as long as possible.  The day was an absolute success and I was exhausted. 


 

Sunday, November 24, 2013

The DMA, The McKinney Avenue Trolley, and Klyde Warren Park Storytime :)

Well, I know my last post was a little CORNY but I love story time sooooo.....  Anyhow, as I am in the process of organizing and adding information to my blog, I have neglected posting about our Journey.  I will share our delights with the DMA, Story Time @ Klyde Warren Park, and the The M-Line Trolley... and I finally got the pictures (the ones that came out) together!!  Yay me.

My sister and niece were able to accompany Jacob and I to Klyde Warren Park and the DMA a few weeks ago.  I hope I remember enough to tell you about it, I have slept since then!  

We met at the train station, lunches packed and babies in tow.  I remember that it was overcast, which was great because Jacob had recently pulverized my sunglasses.  We board the train and got settled.  Jacob had a fit in my lap while I frantically searched for a banana.  I thought to myself, "Of course I can't find this giant banana among sandwiches and apple slices.  If I were searching for something else, the banana would be in the WAY!"  So eventually I found the elusive banana and he ate it and chilled out.  After a while the kids got restless and bounced around and yelled at the window and annoyed every single other passenger on the train and it was great.  Not really, maybe just a few.


Inside the Trolley
We wanted to take the McKinney Avenue Trolley, so once we got to downtown we took light rail to Cityplace.  I really didn't know what to expect, as my other Trolley experience is with Molly the Trolley in Fort Worth which is really more like a shuttle that is made to look like a trolley on the inside.  Still fun though.  I heard a little bell in the distance, and looked up to see a real old-fashioned trolley making its way toward us, on real trolley tracks coming into the turnaround.  Whaaaat?  Awesomes.

Inside is even better.  Everything from the benches to the driver's uniforms makes you feel like you stepped about 100 years back in time.  It is air conditioned and heated so it is a comfortable ride regardless of time of year.  During our trip the windows were open and it was all grey and overcast outside, smelling like it would rain soon.  I love that!  I highly recommend that you make this a part of any trip to the Arts District in Dallas, or anywhere along McKinney Avenue. The McKinney Avenue Trolley is free to ride, but a voluntary donation into the fare box is greatly appreciated.  

Our stop is across the street from the DMA and Klyde Warren, which is really hard to get wrong because the end of the line where the trolley turns around to come back is at the next signal light.  <This has apperantly changed.  Regardless, you can't miss the big park so get off at the next stop. After crossing over to Klyde Warren Park,  I was so glad we decided to make this our location for the outing today.  We skipped over the children's park, there was a private school visiting and there were a lot of bigger kids playing there, so no thanks.  I was on a mission to get to the Imagination Playground anyway.  

Big blue foam blocks and noodles for building, kids and their parents constructing little houses and mazes and obstacle courses, Jacob and Haley running around and having a blast on the lawn, surrounded by tall buildings and the visible highway, what a fantastic time!  

My day could have ended there, with all the fun we had, but we had only just begun.  Story time was next, the main draw for my decision to visit.  I love the idea of story time in a park, but maybe I am partial because I love story time anywhere.  Story time is held right next to Imagination Playground, so you can't miss it.  Soon enough it was 11:00, and we were ready!

Stories, parachutes, scarves, jingle bells, songs and bubbles,  I felt like a kid again.  The little munchkins were really engaged and having a ball.  Being close to Halloween, (has it been that long since we went?), the songs and stories were themed accordingly.  It lasted an hour but felt like 30 minutes, I swear.  The story time is wrapped up with bubbles, bubbles, bubbles.  A bubble machine supplied a never ending rain of bubbles upon the children, and then bubble dishes with wands for making big and little bubbles were set out and it was a bubble-acolypse!  

And then, it was over.  We were hungry like hippos so we grabbed a spot and stuffed our faces .  The day had been a success so far, and we still had one more stop.  Of course there were a number of places to chose from, but the DMA's children's area is on my wish list.  Everybody full? Yes. Diapers changed? Yes. Everything packed up (now a much lighter load!)?  Yes. Off to the DMA.

We did not get to spend as much time here as I would have liked.  We did however get to visit the children's area.  First we went into a little room called Arturo's Nest.  You can touch everything here in this room, and there is no shortage of toys to play with and activities to do.  Puppets and puzzles and lots of sensory objects and toys around the room.  It would be ideal for ages maybe between 2-5, but we had plenty of fun in there.  Then we decided to head around the corner to an area that I think was for older kids, but there wasn't anything that was a danger to Jacob and Haley so they played on.  Everything in here was designed to stimulate the senses as well.  Beads & curtains in doorways, magnet shapes, 'make your own story' boards, I could go on forever.  I realized after a while that it was time to start heading back, time flies when you are having so much fun!  



We hit the trolley just in time, and got to relax and sit.   Our rug rats were completely exhausted, and Jacob almost immediately passed out.  Haley followed shortly after.  They slept on our shoulders and in our laps through the trolley ride, (oh so nice and peaceful ha ha) and woke only briefly while we switched to the light rail.  Back at the train before we knew it, we were able to sit back and hold our still snoozing babes while we waited for departure.  I was really tired and glad I didn't have to drive back from Dallas.  

By the time we arrived at our stop, both babies were awake and in good spirits.  My sister and I were very pleased with how the day had turned out.  We were very tired, but it was well worth it.  Today was considered a 'splurge' day because I spent $10 total.  Definitely worth it.  Since Jacob is so young, there is so much we can do now before money has to get involved.  And even then, it has to be more than worth it.

I will wait until another day to get my Stockyards story out to you, as I want to go back and review the $1 petting zoo.  Expect it early December.  So many things to do, so little time!  Happy outings mamas!



Saturday, October 26, 2013

Northpark Center and Collin Creek Mall-- all in ONE day!!

NorthPark Center 
and Collin Creek Mall 

Story Time, Ducks and Turtles, and a Soft-Play Area
FREE  (My only cost was the $10 train ticket, less than I would have spent in gas)

Of course I had to hit up 2 places when I took my excursion to Plano.  I do not live close to the area, so I take transit and knock out a couple of the places on my 'Jacob and Mommy Playtime Wishlist'.  I decided one lovely day that I was going to hit up a storytime somewhere new.  I love storytimes and we 'chase' them all over the metroplex.  You always have something to do if you have a library near you, and in the metroplex, you do.  At least one.  I love how each and every story time is so unique, and I use many of the techniques that I have learned going to these storytimes at home. 

Jacob and I rode the TRE out to Dallas and then took the light rail and a quick shuttle over to NorthPark Center.  The Storytime would be held in North Court and was at 10:30, we arrived at 10:15.  That gave me a chance to change Jacob, which I needed some time because there were not any close bathrooms, or at least what I consider close.  When I came back down the LOOOONNNGGGG hallway from the bathroom, I was greeted by children's music, little colorful mats spread out on the floor, and mommies and lil munchkins arriving.  There was a table to get your 'jingle bell' rattles, and scarves which were to be used in a song.  We grabbed ours and picked out a nice spot, I was so excited and Jacob was dancing his little heart out to the music that played.

Story time was magical.  It is right out in the middle of North Court.  Rhymes and stories, scarves as kites and songs to shake those bells to... it was fantastic.  Happy children squealing and singing and stomping, passers-by stopping to look at the adorable children and also the mommies singing and reading with their precious babies, 20 awesome minutes of this.  I loved the song selection, and if it was a new song, it was really easy to learn so that after the first verse, you are just singing right along.  

This Storytime is actually part of the Bookmarks storytime, and Bookmarks is a branch of the Dallas Public Library that is located inside NorthPark Mall.  If you happen to miss the morning storytime in the middle of North Court, you can attend the next one at 12:30 IN the library.  The library is small, but really interesting.  Jacob and I spent some time here after we had snacks in the courtyard.  We had yet another storytime, I read 3 books to him while he played with puzzles (you get them from the front desk).  

At this point I am ready to see some turtles and ducks.  I walk for what seems like forever, past fountains and art sculptures that I don't understand and shops I will never shop at, until finally I reach the "pond" area.  It is inside, with shallow water and some pyramid looking fountains, water cascading down the sides and shrubbery around, kinda nice, I liked it.  A little bridge to walk over and a little rock island for a heat lamp, food, and hanging out right there were 3 little ducks and a turtle.  Well Jacob was happy.  "Du-Duck, Du-Duck", he screamed.  We spent at least 20 minutes there. Du-duck, du-duck.  20 minutes.  Ha ha ha I can still hear him!!

It is past lunchtime and nearing Jacob's nap time, so we skedaddled and made our way to the shuttle.  Jacob and I chow down on some bananas  and he got his milkies on the shuttle as we make our way to the light rail.  Onward from the light rail we hit up a bus from Downtown Plano to Collin Creek Mall where Jacob began his 45 minute nap.  I gotta say that writing this, transit sounds like a lot with the trains and light rails and shuttles and buses, but it really isn't.  I find it much more calm and relaxing than driving anyhow.  And it's easy once you get the hang of it..  

We arrive at Downtown Plano Station, to find that there is a park right there next to the station!!  A park with a pond, no less!!  Well, Jacob was still sleeping in my arms, so maybe we can play on our way back.  Jacob slept on the bus ride also, and woke up right before we arrived at the mall.  Perfect timing!!!



We walked into the mall, and Jacob had to check out Lunar Golf.  The lady inside was really nice and let Jacob just walk around for a while.  I finally peel him away from the neon colors and we head towards the play area.  WOW.  That is what I have to say about his awesome play area.  A jeep stuck in the mud and a waterfall are the two places that the kids really hung out at.  Outside this wonderful play area are some coin operated kiddie rides and around the corner is one of those bounce attractions that Jacob is way too young for.  I highly recommend making a visit to this play area if you can.  One of the best so far.

After all this fun, I am ready to go, as is Jacob.  We make the bus right as we walk out the door, and head back to Downtown Plano for about 15 minutes of park fun before it is time to go. Transit arrives, it is time for us to finally sit.  Then, my dear son passed out immediately.  I just stared at my exhausted baby for most of the way back.  Just watched his little chest go up and down, his sweet breath each time making its way up to tickle my nose.  He slept in my arms on the train as well.  OUT.  Completely out.  
My little booger







Monday, October 7, 2013

Even more fun events around DFW!!!



is on Facebook!!
'LIKE' us and stay up-to-date on things to do - mostly FREE cuz that is how I like it!  See for yourself  HERE!!!


PARADISE POND -- APTLY NAMED

Paradise Pond
301 E. Texas Street

Grapevine                                                  $1 per person

Thursdays and Fridays 9am-11am



Paradise Pond is a child's wonderland.  A parent's too.  The second you step foot inside, you feel this childlike glee, you know that you are about to have a ball!  There are rules and a waiver you must sign, then you get your Paradise Pond key chain and off you go to explore the magical world that First Baptist Church of Grapevine has created.

I am amazed at how organized this place is.  There are little "stations" each one with a different theme.  You can go shopping at the little kid 'market' complete with toy fruits and veggies, a child's play kitchen, little shopping carts to gather your 'groceries', and a little table set up for a tea party if you like.  Around the corner you can play with toy cars and all things 'vrooom', my son likes to sit in here for about an hour.  You may enter the Paradise Pond area, which is an enclosed look-alike pond that has little soft play mats for lily pads and toy dinosaurs scattered throughout.  The main 'attractions' in this wonderland are a bounce house, a wood workshop,  little baby roller coasters, a large tube structure to play in, little bikes that are connected and move in a circle kind of like a merry go round, and an area for dress up.  Yup.  The kids can dress up like a princess or Elmo or Superman or a ballerina and go "shopping" or play with toy cars, just not in the bounce house or play structure.  They want to keep the costumes in good shape.  

For $1, you cannot beat this place.  There is far more to this place than I can even mention.  I loved it, my son loved it, his cousin loved it, all the kids there were having a BLAST, I mean, everyone needs to go here at least once.  



You do need to know the following:
*Paradise Pond is just past the First Baptist Church building on the left if taking Texas St. from Main St.  There will be signs pointing you to the right direction.

*Show up at 9.  Paradise Pond is very popular, and once they reach capacity, a sign is placed outside that reads that their pond is overflowing.  Keep on driving and try to come back another day.

*I can't remember if they allow shoes or not, but a good rule to remember is that you always want to bring socks to any play area, as MOST of them have rules about socks only.

*You can rent it out for birthdays, just know that you need to schedule it at least 6 months in advance.  Popular place, and once you visit, you will know why.

Jacob and his cousin Haley could not make it to all the play areas.  There is just so much to do.  I am certain that I will be visiting Paradise Pond again in the very near future!!  2 hours will seem like nothing when you leave here, as there is so much to keep you and your little ones busy.  Jacob passes out before we can even leave the parking lot, so it's a great nap-maker!!!

Bounce Time at Colleyville Public Library

Bounce Time Friday

10am-11am 

FREE

for the 'under 3' crowd, perfect for crawlers!!


Colleyville Public Library

110 Main St  Colleyville



Every Friday morning, (always check the website calendar for closings) you can take your lil chillins to Colleyville Public Library to release some wiggles.  It is fantastic!!  They have a nice sized room room set up with a bunch of soft play toys and mats to climb and tumble around on.  You will find little toys to play with, balls to bounce, tunnels to crawl through, and plenty of area to roam. I love that the mothers are very attentive here and everyone is so friendly!  Background music with children's songs and nursery rhymes so my son danced near the CD player for 15 minutes! And how cute to see the little ones get excited about a nursery rhyme they know come on.  

When playtime is nearing it's end, the 'time to clean up' song is played and everyone helps put away the toys.  It is only open for an hour, but afterward you can head right next door to the children's library area, where there are toys for the little kiddos to play with and books to read to them.  You can read to them while they play, or check out some books to read to them later.  

I love public libraries and what they have to offer, I always say you have something to do and somewhere to go if you have one near you.  Get out of the house and snuggle up in a big over sized chair at the library and read a story or two.

The Tubes at Irving Bible Church

2435 Kinwest PKWY

(North Irving - off Beltline and 635)

OPEN EVERY DAY from 9am-9pm.  

*Closed from 8am-10:30am for cleaning on last Wednesday of the month.  

FREE

I stopped here on a whim because I was in the area, and I had seen The Tubes mentioned in a number of other blog posts and forums.  We didn't have a ton of time, but we did get to experience the fun that is the Tubes, and I see why it is a favorite!!

The tube structure itself is for ages 3+ I would guess, looks like a ton of fun.  Of course, I have a 13 month old and my sister has an 11 month old, so we really appreciated the toddler area, fish tank, and tiny tot area  inside the enclosed tube structure.

We took the kids to the bug themed play area, which is mostly enclosed and great for crawlers, cruisers and walkers.  Jacob wanted to explore further, so we strolled into The Tubes.

I am rather claustrophobic, so we didn't spend too long in there.  It seems really compact, which I am sure kids don't care about, but I don't have a preschooler, I have a toddler that I need to stay next to in a play area like that.  Straight to the back, there is a little structure for the tinier tots, which the little ones enjoyed.  They climbed and crawled through a tunnel enjoyed their loud echoes inside the glass enclosed area.  

It was almost time to go when we ventured out, and noticed that there was an aquarium and a wall next to it with funny shaped and distorted mirrors.  I will say the aquarium was a big hit.  They pointed and babbled at the fish, until we had to peel them away and make a dash for the car.

The staff here is very friendly and yes, you can have birthday parties here!