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The beach. What comes to mind? For me it’s wonderful thoughts of relaxation and family fun. I have great memories of beach time with my own children when they were little. I remember how they were simply amazed by what they could see and do at the beach. My kids are older now…we all still enjoy the beach but those young days of wonder and amazement are long gone…

ballerina at beachOur friends recently took their little girl to the beach for her First Beach Day. Not only did they have a great time but they snapped some awesome family pics. These photos capture the awe and wonder their little one was experiencing. From running in the sand, to building sandcastles with daddy, or simply snuggling with mom and dad while the ocean breeze blows through her hair, this little girl had the time of her life!

If you are planning a trip to the beach, here are some ideas to make that day more memorable:

 

1. Sunscreen!! It’s very important for everyone. Get something with an SPF of at least 30 and remember to reapply often. Bring along some lip balm with a good SPF in it as well.

 

2. Take along hats for everyone. Your little one may not want to leave it on all the time but it’s a great addition for extra sun protection, especially between 11 and 3 when the sun is at it’s peak..

 

3. Blankets and towels. I actually read a great idea not too long ago. If you are the teensiest bit crafty and can sew a basic seam do this: Get a plastic/flannel backed tablecloth. Sew a few beach towels to the flannel side of the tablecloth; you may have to stitch a few towels together lengthwise to get the right width. At the beach, lay down the plastic side on the sand and sit on the towel side. When you pick this up at day’s end, the sand will not be sticking like crazy to the bottom of your beach “blanket”. Genius.

 

4. Snacks and drinks. Everyone will get hungry and thirsty. Take along kid-friendly snacks and water bottles and drink bottles that can be re-closed between sips. A cooler with wheels makes it easier to transport all this stuff.

 

sandcastle5. Sand toys and beach games.  Everyone will want to get in on the sand play. Be sure to have enough so even dad can get in on the building and digging and older kids have games to occupy them as well.

 

6. Beach chairs are always handy. Backpack beach chairs are easy to carry to and from the car.

 

7. Baby powder. When you are ready to head for home, sprinkle baby powder on yourself and anyone else- wherever sand is sticking. The powder helps remove the sand and keeps it from re-sticking.

 

8. If you are staying at the beach for the whole day you may want to have a beach umbrella or canopy for shade. Nothing ruins your day quicker than a sunburn. Stay out of the sun for parts of the day.  Re-applying that sunblock should help as well.

 

9.  Take a good book along. There’s nothing like reading at the beach. I love it!

 

the Leek family10. Be sure to take a camera along to capture all the great family moments that will become memories for years to come. I have our beach pics from years past in a frame in my office and love looking at the happiness and joy on my kids faces as they enjoy their day. Those memories are absolutely priceless….

Finally, the most important, ALWAYS WATCH YOUR CHILDREN AROUND WATER. Never assume someone else is watching. Be constantly vigilant and aware. Your children are just too precious…

The beach. I hope it brings happy thoughts to you just like it does for me….

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