Too Many Pictures of Family Games

"Josh, what do you want to do for yor birthday?"

I don't know.

"Well that's not helpful. Surely there's something you want to do."

No, not really.

"Okay, then. Mammoth Park it is."

This place is da bomb for all day free entertainment. And we didn't even know half of what was there. Had we known, we would have taken our basketball, our bocce set, a frisbee, some horseshoes... That's just what we didn't do. They've got a gazillion playgrounds scattered here and there, which is genius because it's never crowded. Come to think of it, there never IS a crowd there. Odd, considering it's the best free entertainment there is. I mean, even teens love a good playground. Slide races rock.

Ready? Set.... Go!

Josh is in the lead. His slightly heavier frame is a clear advantage.

Right up until the turn, and then Becky's impossibly tiny hips  zip her through the shift while Josh has to manually remove himself.

He manages to free himself and gains the upper hand again!

It's nearly a dead-on tie! WHAT A SEAT GRIPPER THIS IS, FOLKS.

He sets down first. The birthday boy is a winner all around.

People, in case you're not already aware of this, teens are like toddlers all over again. What was fun then is fun now. For different reasons, perhaps, but still.

Mammoth also is home of the giant slide. And by "giant" I mean really, really long, with a few bumps in it for good measure. This is the bottom half of it.

It comes with it's own set of rules, too. You know, things like "don't use wax paper to help yourself go faster" and "don't go down in pairs."

And if you're there on a lucky day (which happens to be almost every time we're there, because there are some really stupid people out there) you'll inevitably see someone demonstrate exactly why wax paper should not be used. We do it right. We get our wax paper out of the trash can at the bottom of the slide. It's already been used, so while it gives a bit of an edge to your sliding experience, you don't get the sensation that you're going to lose your life somewhere between the top and the bottom of the hill. Our personal favorite family of the day was the one who yelled to the dad (who was using a fresh piece of wax paper) "pick your feet up!" So he did. The man caught air. It was impressive. He promptly tossed his paper and they went in search of something else to do. I felt his pain as he hit the slide coming back down and going Way Too Fast. That, too, was impressive.

I always love taking family photos at this place, because it's so well groomed and picturesque. Between half charged batteries and mama's blurred eyes (my eye appointment is this week, people. I know they're in need of help) they did not turn out like I expected. Or even like one would hope if one had bad eyes and a half charged battery.

So we played Duck, Duck, Goose instead. I know we can play that anywhere, but Micah insisted. He also insisted that Woody get a turn.

We later realized it was so that Micah could help Woody, enabling himself to get more turns than anyone else. The boy ain't stupid.

So that's what turning 15 looks like around these parts. Josh seemed to have a grand old time, but we'll see if he decided to come up with some actual plans of his own next year for 16.

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