Yes, you read that right. I live in San Diego and I hate going to the beach.
To clarify, I don’t hate the actual beach. I actually really love it and would never want to live somewhere that doesn’t have a beach nearby. The salty air and the sand between your toes can you give your body a recharge equivalent to a day at the spa. I used to spend every day of summer break at the beach with friends and a couple of $5 pizzas. Those days I was only responsible for myself, throw a towel and some sunblock in a bag and head out the door.
The beach trips that aren’t my favorite happened after I had kids. The whole thing is this huge production that just stresses me out. The amount of things you need to pack: strollers, sunblock, towels, snacks, water, sand toys, bubbles, extra clothes, hats and big umbrellas. Ugh. All of those items times 5 since we have a big family. Traveling anywhere is tough, but the beach adds a different element.
The crowds at the beach make me nervous with 3 little ones. The older two love the water, so they’re constantly wanting to jump over the waves and sit at the shoreline. Which can be hard to keep an eye on when there’s a lot of people doing the same. The little one isn’t walking yet, so she’s mostly content hanging with me on a blanket, but she needs to be watched to make sure she’s not eating the sand or getting sand around her g-tube site. (Girl #3 has a gastrointestinal tube for feeding)
Then there’s the sand. It. Gets. Everywhere. In the food, in the sunblock and all these other places. No matter how well we rinse off in the outdoor showers, we always seem to bring half the beach home with us. It’s in the car, the showers and the laundry room for days after the trip! The worst for me is the sand that gets stuck to the kids’ scalps. It seems like it’s cemented on there! Even when we’re home, the real work of cleanup is in full effect. Scrubbing scalps and vacuuming sand. It just never ends.
At the end of the day, the joy of going to the beach brings my kids and the memories that we make are worth all of the stress and sand. I am all for outdoor experiences and less screen time, so we do what we have to do and grin and bear it. I do enjoy days at the beach, just preparing for it and clean up after is exhausting and messy. But that’s motherhood, right?
Are there any activities that your kids love, but you absolutely dread? Comment below and let me know about it!