I have to admit that there are some places that the kids love that I could take or leave. Today we went to Chutes & Ladders playground, which is part of the Hyland Lake Park Reserve in Bloomington. It is essentially a great big habitrail for kids that they run, climb, and slide through like a bunch of screaming little hamsters. I understand why they love it and appreciate the ability for them to get out and move their bodies. Some things you just do for the people you love and it helps to remember that with young kids a little bit of time spent doing something fun goes a long way. The sun was hot and Charlie was apprehensive about the water sprayers so about an hour and a half was good enough for us.
The thing I do like about this area of the metro is the park itself, which includes a swimming lake, some marsh area and a good walking and biking trail through prairie reserve. For most of the drive you are definitely in the city with all its incumbent traffic and concrete and then all of a sudden you turn off the highway and you are in nature. The Twin Cities have many areas like this where there is clear space reserved for a natural landscape within the urban area. It's one of my favorite things about the place I live because I have a hard time deciding whether I love the city or the country more. I feel as if I can easily have the best of both worlds.