WE walked to the beach singing, “Oh I do like to be beside the seaside.” The baby was smiling in her pram as the toddler skipped along beside her. She spotted the sea, grabbed her bucket and ran down to the shore laughing…
I ran after my daughter in a designer tankini that had absolutely no nipple leak stains on it whatsoever (you could practically hear the Baywatch music) and joined her for a paddle.
The baby giggled as daddy dipped her tiny toes in the water. We looked just like a family out of a holiday brochure, we were that bloody happy….Oh no.. my mistake, that wasn’t us…
That was that other family. You know the one I mean. The one with tans and matching surf wear, carrying their giggling babies effortlessly along the beach in those backpack kid carrier things. They have a cool box packed full of delicious sandwiches, homemade hummus, carrot sticks and organic ginger beer (definitely NOT a carrier bag containing sausage rolls from Greggs, half a packet of rice cakes, a banana leftover from the car journey and a jar of baby food). The family who knew that, of course, you can’t push a buggy across sand. The family who were fully aware that it is best to apply sun cream to the children before you get to the beach to avoid a whole load of sandy, sticky mess. The family whose kids love doing childreny things like paddling and sandcastles. The Super Organised Beach Family Robinson having the time of their lives…
Definitely not us.
We were convinced that our two under two would love the beach. Kids love the seaside don’t they?Turns out that our kids, well… they hated the sea, and the side, and everything else in between.
Here, they explain why (they are very advanced for their age obvs).
1.The Sea (aka Massive Water Monster). Can you believe my Daddy actually dangled me over this Crashing Pool of Danger. And, as if that wasn’t terrifying enough, he then proceeded to put my feet in it. I am seriously considering calling Childline (just as soon as I have learnt to use the phone).
2. The Sand. WARNING. This delicious looking crumbly stuff does not taste like biscuit. I repeat it does not taste like biscuit. It took me at least ten mouthfuls to work this out but I can now confirm, without a doubt, that sand is definitely not biscuit-flavoured.
3.The Sun. It is hot and it gets in your eyes – what’s to like? The slightest glimpse of the sun and mummy makes us ‘go outside and get some sunshine’. The strange thing is once we are outside she tries her hardest to ‘keep us out of the sun.’ Parents are seriously weird.
4. Sun cream. You want me to stand STILL while you smother me in horrible white sticky stuff from head to foot? I don’t think so. Mummy says, “let me put this on or we can’t go outside in the sunshine.” Suits me fine.
5. The facilities. You want to wee in your pants, they secretly want you to wee in your pants (to save them another trek across the beach to the loo). But no one gets to wee in their pants. Instead, I am taken to a very smelly, dirty locked box containing a toilet. Then once in the box my mummy shouts ‘don’t touch the toilet’ every five minutes while she attempts to hold me over the toilet so I can go for a wee. Now, call me strange, but I cannot go in those kind of conditions. So, I don’t. Then as soon as we are back on the beach, I need to wee again. After the fifth try my daddy suggested I could do it in the sea? WTF! Have you seen the sea – big giant splashy loud water monster thing? If I can’t manage to go in a toilet box I am not going to be able to go in the sea. Parents are idiots.
6. The Food. This was a let down from start to finish. The cuisine included: Baby food with a sprinkling of sand, ice-cream dipped in sand, sand scraped off and put back in a cone, breast milk with a dash of lady sweat, pebbles, crap found on the sand and just sand.
7. Sun hats. To be honest I don’t actually hate sun hats. In fact, some days I refuse to take mine off all day long – which mummy doesn’t seem to like, especially at bath time. What I do hate is being told I MUST wear the sun hat and having it tied, yes TIED, to my tiny baby head.
Of course, our next trip to the beach will be different. We will be organised and well equipped. We will have the family day at the coast we have always dreamed of. Besides, now the girls are a bit older they’ll enjoy it. Pre-schoolers love the seaside, right?
Are you planning on taking your little ones to the seaside this bank holiday? Here are a few ‘hot tips’.. Feel free to join me for a chat on Facebook or Twitter.
13 thoughts on “7 Reasons The Beach is Rubbish (According To My Babies)”
We are the disorganised family too! And always forget about the flipping buggy (which is a total pain to lift across the sand with a big, tubby baby in). I think my son actually likes the taste of sand… Little weirdo. We tell him ‘no’ and he then quickly shovels more in when he thinks we’re not looking!
He does love the beach though so I SUPPOSE all the faffing is worth it here. Good luck next time!
Yes my babies seemed to go through this ‘I hate everything fun’ phase! They seemed to bloody cry at every thing we were so sure they would love. Do not even get me started on the day we took them to the FUN that is the soft play centre!!
Oh don’t get me wrong, he has his fair share of miserable git moments! Swimming is a prime example – one week it’s great, the next I am literally torturing him apparently.
I can empathise with your babies and and soft play angst… I’ve had a few stressful moments there myself!!
Thankfully, they are not too bad these days.. But it can be hit and miss with some things!
I have been both families – the perfect ‘packed for all eventualities’ and the spur of the moment ‘we are so lame at this day out malarkey’ scenario……..
Beach days are fun as long as there are lots of shells for the toddler to collect (kept mine entertained for four whole hours!!!!), that the sea shore is not a 5 mile walk over pebbles and sea weed and that there is a beach cafe within a 30 second walk. Oh and teach them that doing a wee in the sea is ‘traditional’ and that everyone does it (even mummy – but that’s just cos she can’t be arsed to go to the scary, smelly beach toilet where she could quite possibly contract hepatitis just from looking at the loo seat)….
And last but not least take at least one bottle of adult refreshment (aka wine) as it really helps numb the pain and I really don’t care how many funny looks the other perfect families throw me – they are just jealous because they spent all morning packing Tarquin and Penelope’s beach shit and forgot to pack their Sauvignon Blanc!!!!
Ha ha thanks for the tips! Especially about the wine..this is definitely where we went wrong. I guess this patenting business is all a learning curve.. We will crack it this year… Maybe. But if not it won’t matter because we will have wine!!
We live by the seaside ( we can see the sea from most rooms in our house) and go to the beach most days for dog walks, kid trips or a combination of both. We love it and couldn’t live without it. I don’t know what you do with kids all Summer if you don’t live by the sea to be honest! My two and five year old still screech with delight as they approach the waves ( even in Winter).
You do need to be organised but once you have organised yourself successfully once you will do it easily time and time again. We take ham sandwiches, crisps, bananna’s biscuits and cartons of drink . Always save at least one item for when you are getting them dressed at the end of the trip. Take one full warm change if clothes per child. We take a blanket to sit on, towels for each child then hats and sun cream etc if needed. Buckets and spades optional. All packed into a back pack if possible. Then relax and enjoy. Simples!
You are that family!! The awesome beach family I want to be. We are miles from the sea so in my defence we have not had much practise! I would love to live by the coast. I will take heed of this advice..thank you!
I am sitting here reading this and laughing out loud with my husband asking me every 3 seconds why I’m laughing. That is mainly what I want to say, and that I have no tips to make things better at the beach. I have tips that can actually make things worse.
. I have actually taken my kids to the beach without having packed their swim suits.
. I have had embarrassing arguments with my 4.5 yr old, having to point out to him that when we go to the beach and then decide to swim, we’re going to get wet and we can’t let that surprise us every single time! After he refused to listen to me and insisted I take off his “wet yucky clothes” because they’re wet and yucky 5 minutes after we got to the beach (and 2 hours of getting ready to go to the beach), I catch him with a complete stranger helping him with his clothes and giving me a what-kind-of-mother-are-you look.
. Today my toddler came up to me with sand in his mouth, apparently wanting me to help him with that situation. I wiped out his tongue with a tissue. He gave me a what-kind-of-mother-are-you look and walked away.
Ha thanks for making me laugh out loud right back!! I am so glad we are not the only useless beach trip family out there..
You took your toddler to a beach with sand that does not taste like biscuits? What kind of mother care you?!!
Oh Leila! Hilarious. The bit about being surprised and the bit about refusing your help and then strangers do it and look at you.
People should stop peddling the myth that all kids like the beach. Some kids love the beach. Some could eat it all up! Literally! And probably shouldn’t be taken even if they do love it. Others will start liking it around five years old and no sooner. And no doubt there are some who will never, ever see the point. But we have this myth that the beach is the best place for young families, so, I don’t know, obviously we need a public psychologist to unpack that one.
Ha the thing is even if they love it one day; there is no guarantee they will like it another day.. Babies are fickle creatures!
True! See, that, too. We’re just inventing these ideas to try and bring the illusion of certainty into an uncertain world, but we’ve taken it too far on this count.