Summer is nearly half over. How are your kids holding up? Are they bored? Fighting? Are they driving you crazy? I have a prescription for that! What you need is a day at the beach!
Closer Than You Think
Most Americans live within two hours of the ocean. I happen to fall into that demographic, just barely. It takes us just under two hours to get to our favorite beach, but it just doesn’t seem that far. On the way there, the kids are excited with anticipation and don’t seem to argue much. On the way back, More Love Mama and I, pretty much have the car to ourselves as the kids are sleeping off their big day.
Most beaches are free, and the ones that charge for parking are pretty inexpensive. You will probably spend more money on gas than anything else, which is true for us since we live two hours from our favorite beach. Between gas and food, we spend well under $100 for a trip to the beach, which is cheaper than taking our eight kids to the movies.
A Few Quick Tips
Of course, the better prepared you are for a trip to the beach, the more fun you will have. Here are seven things that should help your trip to the beach to be successful.
- Go Early – Unless you like to hike great distances through a crowd, looking for someplace to set up, try to be one of the first groups at the beach.
- Bring Shade – There may be a cool breeze at the beach, but you will still need shade. You can purchase shade canopies on the cheap. This one from Academy is the one we use. The kids probably won’t use it, but you will. Don’t forget plenty of sunscreen, and remember to reapply it frequently.
- Keep Them Hydrated – Your kids most likely won’t think they are thirsty, but they can get dehydrated without even realizing it.
- Toys – Bring plenty of toys for the kids to play with both in the water and on the beach, however, put the kids in charge of hauling them to the beach. If they want it, they have to carry it.
- Extra Towels – Bring two towels for everyone and don’t let anyone use their second towel until they have rinsed off at the showers. That way, the kids don’t complain about being sandy, and neither does your car.
- Invest in a Beach Wagon – Lugging an ice chest across the sand is a real drag (literally), and shade canopies can get heavy if you have to carry them very far. If you go to the beach at least once per year, a wagon like this one is a great investment.
- Pack Light – The beach is not a great place to get extravagant with the food. Sandwiches tend to inexplicably get sand in them, no matter how careful you are. Several times, I have literally brought home more than 50% of the food that we packed because the kids were simply too busy to eat. My suggestion to you is to pack some water and chips and avoid lugging a bunch of food both ways.
Let me know
If you do go to the beach this summer, let me know how your trip went. You can even send pictures to me and I will post them to my Facebook page.
Here’s to a great summer and many fun days at the beach.
Brian at Daddy Go To Timeout
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