Ayden "The Beach Bum"

Summer is finally in session! The sun is out, and the waves are calling. If this is your baby’s first beach adventure, please keep a camera near; because I can assure you that this experience will be epic. Watching your baby squish the sand in between their toes is surely enough to make you laugh throughout the day, and if they’re anything like my Ayden a trip to the beach can be challenging if you’re not prepared. As someone who has learned this lesson the hard way, I can grantee you that a little preparation will make your beach date a happy one.

Golden Tip #1

I literally woke up one morning while visiting my Aunt in Jacksonville and said, “I’m going to take Ayden to the beach”. The problem’s I encountered definitely could have been avoided by making a checklist. Making a checklist will ensure that you don’t forget anything while trying to rush out of the door.

Golden Tip #2

Don’t underestimate your baby’s ability to appreciate the different sights, smells, sounds, and tastes. Ayden LOVED the sand in between his toes, and I lost count of how many times he tried to eat both the sand and the water. If the water is cool, sit in the water and place your baby on your lap. This will allow them to splash and pat the water without getting too cold.

Golden Tip #3

Collect as many seashells you can find. Ayden actually discovered a few himself and I politely repoed them before they landed in his mouth. We brought a few shells home that night and they will soon be added to his memory board.

My List:

A WATERPROOF Beach Bag: I’m not sure why I believed that the plastic lining in my bag was waterproof but I did, and boy was I wrong. As the tide drew near, the water seeped through our bag. So not only did I have to tote a 20-pound baby, but I also had to carry a 50-pound bag filled with soaked diapers, towels, and clothes.

Sunscreen for Both You and Your Baby: I read some really good reviews on the AVEENO Baby sunscreen and after consulting with his pediatrician, that’s the band I chose to buy. My son also has eczema, and AVEENO has a great reputation for creating products especially for those with sensitive skin.

Beach Blanket or Sand Sheet: I probably looked crazy at the beach, but I grabbed the biggest sheet I could find. Ayden is in this rolling around phase, so this gave him plenty of room to move around. It was also really easy to shake the sand off of the sheet and it transferred less sand into my car than It normally would with a towel.

Dry Off Towel: It’s probably best to go with a hooded towel for your munchkin, it allows you to dry both their hair and body off at the same time. Ultimately, this towel saves you some time when trying to wrap up your long day beach day.

Cover-Ups: If you're anything like me, you’re still working to re-obtain your pre-pregnancy body. Cover-ups are literally gods greatest gifts to new moms.

Diapers and Wipes: Bring both swim diapers and regular diapers. I was safe because I brought about 4 of each. Also, don’t forget the wipes! Not only will you need them while changing, but wipes came in handy when I needed to wipe off Ayden's hands that were full of sand.

Baby Sunglasses: I know its pretty comical to even think about a baby wearing sunglasses, but I was able to find some that were both cheap and pliable at Carter's for only $9.00.

Umbrella/Sun tent: There are so many options available, from mini sun blockers to giant tents. At the end of the day we all need a break from the beaming sun rays. Be sure to pack something that gives you a source of shade, or your first beach trip with your baby will be over before it can even begin.

Baby Carrier: I think it goes without saying, but strollers and beaches do not get along! Due to my spur of the moment actions I was not prepared for this part of the trip. Bringing a baby carrier can make your trip a lot easier. With two free hands you’ll be able to carry your bag and your baby with no problems at all.

Water and Food: Don’t forget to keep your baby hydrated while enjoying the sun. Bring bottles with formula ready to go, so all you have to do is pour the water in and shake. For those moms that are still breast feeding, I salute you. Luckily, you have all the tools you need to your cranky baby happy. Bringing snacks can also keep your little one busy as you enjoy the sound of the waves while reading a book.