Suffice it to say that the closest thing I have to a sister is my sweet, sassy friend Freddie, who happens to be one of the most marvelous mothers I know.  Visiting for the weekend from her wonderful West Hollywood home last month, she brought her brood to bask in the desert heat and play at one of our fave resorts, Rancho Las Palmas.

Phalin (14), Farnsworth (5), and Fronkie (4)—hey, don’t blame me, I didn’t name ’em—found the slip-and-slide lifestyle of RLP’s Splashtopia sensational.  This family-friendly water park of pools, falls, slides (and even a sandy beach for the wee ones) allows everyone a safe, sane way to have fun in the sun.  Just don’t forget the SPF.

With the place chockablock with kids of all ages—yes, moms and dads are welcome to dip much more than a toe in—Freddie and I placed our tushes in the bright yellow inner-tubes and lazed away part of the day in the meandering 425-foot long, somewhat circular “river.”  Meanwhile, the kiddles roamed free, taking turns on the two totally fun hundred-foot-long slides.  Farnie and Fronk frolicked for hours under the free-flowing sprinklers and fountains, but the waterfalls were just a bit too much for their tiny taste.  Lots of lifeguards dutifully watched over all, making sure everyone sported safely.

Thankfully, we didn’t need to move too far for tasty treats that included sandwiches, burgers, wraps, etc.  Grilled shrimp tacos—can you say, “OMG!”?  Adult libations were a given.

All afternoon, the kids kicked up their heels, Phalin flirted, and Freddie and I frittered away the hours catching up and loving the fun the family was having.  At least for that little while, all was right with the world.