Surviving Baby’s First Summer at the Beach

July 25, 2014 at 3:32 pm Leave a comment

baby at beach

Oh What a Day!

By Sara Eberle, The New Mom

(This article was originally printed in July 2005 in the Lincoln Journal Newspaper)

Last summer, I was petrified to go to the beach alone with my 9-month-old baby, Evan. My family made fun of me when I brought along my young cousin, who is also our babysitter, but the thought of going solo gave me the shivers. There was just too much stuff to carry. I needed help schlepping all of the gear new moms feel obsessed to take, in one full swoop. It’s not as though I could leave Evan at the beach while I made a second run to my grandmother’s cottage to get everything. Plus, the idea of making more than one trip back and forth in the scorching sun, baby in arms, was exhausting.

The endless list of things moms need for the beach is quite comical. It goes something like this: Baby suntan lotion; grown up suntan lotion; hat for baby; extra hat for baby; hat for mom; cheap umbrella; tent type thing in case the umbrella blows away; stroller; car seat carrier; Pack `n Play portable crib; lunch for mom; baby food and spoons if your child is no longer breast feeding; a cooler with plenty of water and juicy snacks like grapes; the everyday diaper bag with regular and swim diapers, wipes, cream, bottles and pacifiers; plastic beach toys; change of clothes for the baby; change of clothes for mom; at least three big towels; a blanket to spread on the sand; and a beach chair. Whew!

The toughest part at the beach was Evan’s penchant for eating sand and wandering away. Just when I thought I could dig into a People magazine, which required looking down, he would shove fistfuls of pebbles and pieces of seaweed into his mouth. My days of relaxing in front of the surf had come to a screeching halt. Too young to sit and build sand castles, I was in for hot days of preventing a choking incident and chasing my crawling baby as he bee lined towards other people’s blankets.

I also had a hard time lathering up Evan with sun screen. Do you do the slather before getting to the beach even if the baby is crying or at the beach where you end up rubbing in sand? Since there are so many brands of sun block and babies have different skin types, it’s best to check with your pediatrician as to what product is safest for your child.

If Evan went down for a nap in the stroller, I could unwind for a few lucky minutes. But, usually at that point, my nieces, a little older than Evan, would throw around buckets full of icy cold Atlantic water, all at the encouragement of my mischievous father looking to stir up trouble. My favorite time at the beach with Evan was the end of the day. I would wrap him in his tiny terry cloth bathrobe all squeaking clean after a refreshing outdoor shower and snuggle up with a bottle to watch the sun go down.

This summer, I am looking forward to plenty of sunny, silly moments at the shore, especially since Evan is likely to join his cousins in dumping cold ocean water on mommy’s toes. A full morning of running around in salty sea air is sure to guarantee an early night’s sleep, leaving me to enjoy the evening with family and friends.

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Entry filed under: 95.9 WATD-FM Radio, South Shore. Tags: , .

Summer Excursions on the South Shore MommaJam on 95.9 WATD-FM: 5 Tips for Bringing Baby to the Beach

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