We just got home from our first vacation as a family of three to the beaches of North Carolina and Florida. Vacationing with a little one made our trip even more memorable this year. Babies at the beach may be the cutest thing ever! Below are some of the tips we learned that helped us enjoy our time in the sun and sand with Brody in tow.
There is no such thing as too much sun protection
Fair skin and strong sun rays are typically a recipe for trouble. Brody's soft baby skin getting burned on the beach was one of the many new mom fears I had while preparing for our trip. I learned that there is no such thing as too much sun protection. We bought a three sided sun shelter tent and set it up on the beach every day. We slathered Brody in Babyganics sunscreen and kept his skin covered with clothes. His one-piece striped rash guard has been one of my favorite purchases. The long sleeves and high neck cover most of his little body and it's lightweight to wear (for girls, this rashguard is equally adorable). We also made sure Brody wore a hat every day. The fedora style hats seemed to work best for us, as it didn't cover his eyes as much as the floppy white beach hat did. Don't forget to pack baby sunglasses! If Brody was facing the sun without his sunglasses on, he was not a happy camper.
Be Prepared for Feedings
When we go to the beach, we stay there all day. This meant being prepared to keep Brody fed and content. Plan your swimsuit accordingly. My one-piece suit was easy to feed on demand without taking off my swimsuit or having to untie anything. I used a damp beach towel as a cover (this colorful striped towel is so fun!). The damp towel helped keep Brody cool underneath while he ate.
Make A Comfy Nap Spot
The sound of the crashing waves and the warm heat of the sun are the ultimate combo for a great nap. Brody slept the majority of the time we were at the beach. We bought a big Mexican blanket and put it under the tent to make a comfy nap spot, but more often than not, I took advantage of having a sleepy baby snooze away on my chest.
Have a Few Toys Handy
The sand, the cool water, and a little bucket were all we needed for entertainment. Brody loved sitting by the wate'rs edge grabbing handfuls of sand (occasionally trying to eat it) and wiggling his toes in the new texture. Before he got used to the ocean, we filled the beach bucket with ocean water and let him splash his feet in the bucket. It also came in handy to rinse off those sandy hands and feet!
Don't Forget the Basics
With feedings, comes dirty diapers. We experimented with both reusable water diapers and disposables. The disposables won. We used Pampers Splashers all week and they worked great. They don't bulge when they get wet and they have sides you can tear off for easily for changes. We brought a couple of extras with us each day in our giant beach bag. Also, toss in a pacifier. We quickly learned that if Brody had his pacifier to suck on, he was less likely to eat sand or try to stick his sandy hands in his mouth.
Here's All The Gear That Helped Us Enjoy Our Time At The Beach
Have you been to the beach with your little ones? How did you keep them from getting too much sun?
Update: A Momma Society mom sent over a link to Gimme The Good Stuff, which has a helpful guide for picking safe sunscreens. We may be rethinking the sunscreen brand we use in the future.