Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Xavier Goes To The Beach

     It has been a very long time since we have been able to go to the beach. We actually live by the beach. When I say "we live by the beach" I mean about half an hour away from the beach. Although our favorite beach is about 45 minutes away. We tend to like that beach much better, it has plenty of free parking, not a lot of rules and they let you bring dogs. We have a black Labrador named Vito who we simply must take to the beach with us. I am pretty sure if we went without him and he smelled us when we came back he would be very mad. We did not make it to the beach very often last summer. I was only a few months pregnant and very miserable all the time so I had no desire to go to the beach. This year I have been wanting to go. It has been a very busy summer, not only with the edition of a baby, but Nick has a new job and we are currently taking care of Nick's elderly father when we can. Factor all that in along with the fact that this year we have had tons of heat waves as well as rain and thunderstorms and our schedule and weather were not conducive to a beach day. The last reason was the effort. I knew that taking an infant to the beach would be no easy task. Not to mention I was not really sure if he would really enjoy it. I mean lets face it, as much as I love him and he is my world, he can't sit on his own, and he can just barely grab things. So taking him to the beach so he can nap in a different spot then usual seemed like a lot of work. However, I love the beach very much and I was determined to try it.
     We set our sights on Saturday. Nick even went shopping for grocery provisions for the beach day. We are not morning people. Hm...let me rephrase that, I am not a morning person. No matter how much I try I hate getting up early. Luckily, Nick is and does not mind getting up early with Xavier every day. So we got up at 9am. I looked outside and it was overcast. I was a little concerned as I had checked the news Friday night and it said rain all weekend. So we decided to have breakfast and see what will happen. While eating Nick turned on the tv for the weather. As I was cleaning up from breakfast I saw a big, giant dark cloud rolling in, at the same time Nick said "um..." "What is it?" I replied. "Severe thunderstorms today, 60 % chance". At that moment the weather radio went off, warning of severe thunderstorms. Alright, no, I did not make my family pack up and chance going to the beach with severe thunderstorms. I knew I had one more day so I decided we would go to the beach Sunday. We had not fully packed anyway, so I figured we would pack Saturday to be ready to go Sunday.
       Sunday morning I woke up at 9am to dark clouds. I simply looked out the window, let out a big sigh and went back to bed. I woke up around 11ish and decided to have breakfast. I was debating looking out the window what to do. It was not as dark but overcast. Nick suggested we just go to the beach and walk around it. I said that sounded like a good idea, until I really thought about it and realized there is nothing I hate more then going to the beach and realizing it is nice out enough to stay in bathing suits instead of just walk around. I had had enough waiting. I was ready. "No, we are going!" I said. "Pack the car we are going now!". Nick, the wonderful husband I have jumped and packed and off we went.

    It ended up being the perfect weather. It was overcast, but it was a nice 83 degrees out. Also, the beach was not as crowded and I was not as worried about Xavier overheating. Xavier did really seem to enjoy it. In fact he did not nap at all because he was so excited to see everything. He actually liked wearing his hat and sunglasses, which I was surprised about. I sat with him in the water for a little bit and he liked it. (Luckily the water was really warm). He even had a cute little surprised look on his face when a wave would come and his whole body would shake in excitement. We brought his bumbo seat so we had a place to sit him down when needed. He loved that and sat in it even better then he does at home, I think because he had so much to look at. So it was a great day of riding waves, sitting on the beach and playing ball (with Vito of course). We headed home at about 7pm, then, baths for all. Nick washed the dog and I washed the baby.
     One of the big things I have realized is how much stuff I now take to the beach. There was a time when I was single when I would go to the beach and bring a large purse, with just a towel. Then, when I married Nick he loved to bring a lot, so came the chairs, umbrellas and cooler. When we added Vito, we added a bag for Vito with a long leash, ball and bowl for water. Now with Xavier we also added a diaper bag, extra towels and sunscreen, a bumbo seat, bottles ( I don't like to nurse on the beach ), and a beach wrap. I'm thinking that living as a minimalist is not working out so well now with a baby. Not to mention my small car gets more and more packed. I couldn't help noticed an older couple sitting near us on the beach. They had two chairs and two bags. When they packed up, they each took a chair and bag and off they went. When we packed up, Nick made two trips, while I fed and changed Xavier, put him in the wrap to walk back to the car. We did decide to invest in a baby tent cabana (on its way right now). We also are going to look into getting a cart, but have not found one we like yet. I was incredibly grateful for the water wrap as it helped carry Xavier so I could carry other items and walk the dog, plus it was great to be able to get it wet. Although it may have been challenging, it was worth it. I remember many beach days doing the same things with my parents and loving every second of it. I know one day we go back to being like the older couple with two chairs and two bags, but for now I am content to bring our entire house including the kitchen sink!


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