Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Dallas's Birthday Adventure in Volunteer Park

Dallas's birthday this year (December 22nd) fell on a Sunday.  The night before, we met with some friends for dinner and a movie.  It was a great evening and so much fun to spend time with each other.  Dallas has never been one to want a big celebration or have attention drawn to himself, so we (he) decided to keep this year's birthday low key.  After church we hung out as a family, I prepared a yummy meal, and then we all went to the park while it was cooking.  We've been having fun trying out all the different parks in the area.  I am constantly amazed at all the fun places to visit down here.  It makes sense why the local cities have maintained so much land for various parks throughout the county, the weather is amazing year round, which means everyone wants to be outside!

For Dallas's birthday afternoon we decided to check out Volunteer Park, about a couple miles from our house.  We immediately loved it!  There were basketball and tennis courts, soccer field, huge open spaces for picnicking and play, and several different play areas designated by age.  Daxton was in heaven playing on all the equipment.  There was also a gorgeous wetland trail circling a beautiful pond which was connected to the park.

Looking through these pictures, it's amazing to see how quickly our little man is growing.  He's such a toddler now!
Having fun in the tunnels...

There were several rocking toys spread on the outside of the play areas.  It was so funny watching Daxton rock back and forth, especially because he always led with his head.  His chunky cheeks would even start bouncing as he got going!

He loved the alligator most of all and kept chomping his teeth as he rode.

With some help and encouragement from daddy, Daxton finally went down the slide by himself.  He was pretty proud of himself and wanted to slide over and over again.

After we had explored all the different play areas, Daxton finally let us go on a walk around the neighboring pond.  I loved how the trail was often built with wooden boardwalk over the water so you could look down at the lily pads and fish.  Daxton simply loved to run!

It turned out to be such a pretty walk through the wetlands!

It was so weird for Dallas and I, as we were both sweating from running after our little toddler, to think that it was the end of December.  We were so used to being surrounded by cold and snow for Dallas's birthday; instead it was sunny and 85 degrees outside!  Such a fun experience to spend the holidays in shorts and T-shirts.

My loves

After awhile Daxton got tired and wanted to ride in his stroller, but would only sit at the bottom.  It was pretty cute to see him decked out in my sunglasses with his little legs bouncing.

We had so much fun looking for all the different wildlife in the area.  We saw lots of fish, turtles, and all kinds of birds.

Daxton LOVED watching all the turtles interact.

Two peas in a pod!
I absolutely love how close these two are!

Before heading home we decided to play in the playground areas one last time, since Daxton was having so much fun.  He still loves the swings and still giggles with delight.  I loved watching his facial expressions.  Such a happy boy!

It was such a fun day at the park and a great way to celebrate Dallas's birthday.  We both feel so blessed to live in such a beautiful area.  We are loving all of the new adventures we've been able to have as a little family and can't wait for the many more in store.

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