We spent the beautiful afternoon today at the beach, in part due to Anna’s recent obsession with the movie Nim’s Island (she wanted to run and play in the water like Nim does). It was nearly perfect… not too hot, not too crowded, nice little breeze, perfect blue sky, shells to be gathered, sand to play in, birds to chase, and even some dolphins passing by. I love the beach like that!
What I don’t love is the part of going to the beach immediately preceding, and following, the good stuff. Preceding, there was fussing between siblings and whining about toys we forgot to bring along (where’s the gratitude, guys?), along with the obligatory and time-consuming Application of Sunscreen. Following, there was grumbling that it was time to leave, changing of minds – and clothes – in the van, not to mention sand everywhere!
I don’t know… maybe we’re just not enough of a “beach” family to do it easily. Maybe if we went more often, the whole experience would flow more naturally and evolve into something holistically enjoyable. But I know some people with kids just love going to the beach all the time… do they have secrets or tricks they employ to make the entire process more pleasant? Or do they simply have easier-going personalities that can overlook the little annoyances? Maybe once our kids are bigger and can do more for themselves, it will be more fun overall. In the meantime, we will not go frequently, but I will always love the middle part of going to the beach!