We’re new to Arizona, but we already know all about the coveted splash pad. In fact, I found East Valley Moms Blog because of their awesome Splash Pad Guide. Move over pancakes, heading to “the pad” is our new Sunday morning tradition! My two year-old doesn’t say a whole lot yet, but he knows when it’s time to go to the “pa pad”.
And while I would still consider our family new to the entire splash experience, I can say that we’ve picked up on unspoken rules along with things that can make the outing even more fun.
- Bring a cup
No, not to drink the water! Kiddos go crazy for cups and water; I wish I got that excited about anything! Whether it’s filling the cups up and splashing about or watching them dance in the stream of water, this keeps them busy for at least twenty minutes. Sold.
- Have a ball
Some kids may get out of hand with this, but my two year-old loves to watch a ball splash in the water. We prefer the soft Nerf-type balls because they cause less damage. They are perfect for splash pads! I think my kid spent ten minutes alone just squeezing water out. We also have a lightweight ball that floats magically in the fountain of water. The little ones love to watch it dance!
- Don’t forget snacks and water
Water water everywhere but not a drop to drink. Really. Don’t.
The kiddos do put in some serious play though, so come prepared with a drink or your child may grab someone else’s sippy cup by mistake (lesson learned). Same for snacks, though some splash pads have rules about eating in the area. Chances are your little will work up an appetite, though, so come prepared.
- Watch for bees
Almost every splash pad we’ve visited has had a welcoming committee of at least a couple of flying insects. Though I’m firm on my theory these bugs are out to get us, my husband insists they’re attracted to the water, or snacks, or both. Every now and again you’ll see a brave parent take one down for getting too close to their precious one. Have at it, just make sure you remove the insect from the area or it could still sting a little foot!
- Put down your phone
I love Instagram just as much as the next gal, but when I’m watching my kiddo in a public setting, I use my phone only when it’s necessary. That’s right ladies – leave your Candy Crushin’ to the five minutes you sit in your car before going into the grocery store (guilty!). It’s not just a courtesy thing, but rather about safety. Water and kids can be a dangerous mix. It really isn’t too difficult to be present when you watch your minis. It’s one of the rare times you can sit and watch them in all of their adorable childhood glory. Go ahead, take a photo – but wait until you are in the car to Instagram it.
With these tips in your parenting arsenal, your next visit to the splash pad is destined to make for a memorable day.