Most of the year the beach is a serene and peaceful place. But when summer hits and its time to take the kids for a beach time holiday it becomes a full-blown, all day, Olympic event in stamina, patience, and figuring out how chase the kids in sand (hot sand).
To make sure you have a good time, prepare yourself.
Depending how log the drive, and whether you are going for a day or a week here are some important tips to consider in preparation.
Bring an iPad for each child in your vehicle. And make sure each iPad has the EXACT SAME GAMES as the other one.
Snacks. Snacks for the car, snacks for the beach, snacks for the hotel room, snacks for the pool … just … snacks.
It might seem an irrational fear, but clumps of seaweed in the ocean might as well be Great White Sharks to kids – you should probably try to avoid the stuff.
Want to know the secret to getting 20 minutes to yourself in the beach chair? Bring a ton of beach toys. Let other peoples kids play with them too – the more kids that are building sand castles around you, the more likely your kids will be occupied by someone else.
Stuff – sunscreen, water for drinking, water for washing salt water out of the kids eyes, water for washing sand off before you all pile back in the car (in case there isn’t a tap), zinc, some shade (umbrella/tent), chairs/blankets to sit on, floaties, towels, extra towels (and leave them in the car), sun hats and sunnies, toys, bathers and a change of clothes, and a camera to capture the madness!
Swimming, playing, and general holiday activities are tiring. Make your kids take naps. For beach trips lasting longer then a day, kids need their rest. Close them in their room and tell them there won’t be anymore beach or pool until they sleep. Then take a late afternoon nap yourself.
A special note: remember, if you find live snails, crabs, fish, starfish or other underwater lifeforms, observe them, then put them back. Only take home empty shells and rocks if you must. A photo can go a long way.
And finally, take it in your stride. Kids will eat sand, they will get salt water in their eyes, they might get car sick on the way there. Take a deep breath, it will be fine.
Enjoy the beach with your family this summer!