Imagine this: you’re at the beach, toes in the sand, about to read a magazine or soak into a good book. HALT! Ok, maybe that is not so easy when heading to the beach with kids in tow. But that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the day with your little ones! With a bit of planning and a dabble of patience, you can turn a beach day with your kids into a lasting memory for BOTH of you 😄.
Step 1: Pack Right
Packing for the beach can be really overwhelming. That’s why we love this simple list from Babble™. They break it right down for you, so you’ll be prepared whether you have a baby, toddler, or big kid!
Step 2: Beach Cart
So now that you’ve packed everything you need, how are you going to get it ALL onto the beach, with kids lagging behind you? The sun hat, sunscreen, extra swim diapers, spare kid swimsuits you can throw in a bag for sure! But what about the beach toys, beach tent, chairs, etc.? Since you can’t buy a second set of arms, it’s totally worth investing in a beach cart. You can pile in all your stuff and let the tough, sand-ready wheels help you navigate to that perfect beach spot (see below!). On the way back to your car, the wet and sandy beach toys can drain through the mesh compartment, and then you just fold up the cart and pop in the trunk!
Step 3: Arrive Early and Plan your Spot Wisely
Beaches can get crowded fast! Pack your car the night before so you can be ready to get right out the door in the morning (ha ha we know that’s not truly possible with kids, but it will help move the process along!). Getting to the beach early is key to getting a good spot. Pick a location close to the lifeguard, but not too far from the bathroom, so when your kids need to go, you can get them there fast! And make sure your bathing suits for girls are FASTEN® swimsuits!
Step 4: Sun Protection
We know this is on the packing list, but it’s important to reiterate! The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends covering up as the best line of defense against the sun’s harmful UVA and UVB rays. This includes minimizing sun exposure between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m, using a sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or greater (and reapply every two hours after swimming or sweating), and wear sun protective clothing. Check out FASTEN’s UPF 50+ sun hats, cover ups, and swimsuits for girls.
Step 5: Get Creative!
Beach toys will only last for so long. Try a sandy treasure hunt (bury colorful items like big shells, mini shovels, balls, etc. in the sand and have your kiddos hunt for the hidden items), a water bucket relay, make a sand angel and decorate with shells, feathers and seaweed, or good old-fashioned limbo! For more ideas check out this article by Parents.
Step 6: Sit back and, um, Smile.
Okay, so maybe it’s a long shot that you’ll actually RELAX at the beach with your kids. But you can still enjoy and treasure this time with them. Sometimes that means planting your butt in the sand right next to them and helping build that sand castle; sometimes it means sitting in your chair and just watching them play, noting how fast they grow and trying to hit pause for just a moment. Don’t stress too much, sand can always be washed away, but how often can you watch your healthy babies swimming, frolicking, living life carefree and in the sunshine? Enjoy it!
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