This year was the first year The Twofer could play in the ocean without me completely spazzing about holding their hand so they didn't wash away. First of all, they are over 50 lbs, and second, the ocean was much calmer.
It got me thinking back to when they were younger and different things we did or could have done to help keep them entertained close by.
1. Inflatable Baby Pool
My friend gave me this trick as she has three girls 7 and under. Pack an inflatable baby pool (I like the Intex Sun Shade Pool which has it's own shade cover) and pump if you need it along with your beach gear. Little ones who are afraid of the ocean will love splashing in the pool and toddlers will stay close by playing with the water and the sand. Even bigger kids can stay occupied and close to camp as they are in charge of refilling the pool with ocean water!
2. Squirt Guns
Squirt guns are another great tool to keep kids close to where you are camped out on the beach. Fill up some buckets with water and they'll keep running back to you for refills. I found this Super Soaker Marvel Water Blasters 3pk on Amazon which is a great deal because you get 3 of them for just $14.99!
3. SPF Tent
When The Twofer was just 3 months old we took them to the beaches of North Carolina. My dad has booked the house before he passed away and we wanted to honor his last vacation wish so we packed up just about every baby item we had (times two) and went with my mom and brother's family in tow.
I invested in a beach tent with SPF 50 so the girls could be with us at the beach and not get fried. I had the Sun Stop'r - Kwik Cabana I and it was great as the girls grew not just for outside, but inside as a play tent!
For a family with older kids or more children I'd invest in an open-air cover like the Deluxe Solar Beach Tent I think. It allows for more air flow and can cover more people.
Kids tend to wander but a kite will help little ones stick around as they want to keep their eye on it, and will help older kids find their way back! Invest in something sturdy that will be easier to launch, and will last. I found this Monkey Kite from Premier Kites that I think would entertain any toddler staring up at it. Oooh ooh, ah ah <-- my monkey impression.
5. Build a sand car
This was my favorite part of our treks to Jones Beach when I was younger. The ocean was rough but the sand could be tamed and we always made sand cars that we'd drive around the world. As they get older, you can dig different rooms for a house and watch them hop from room to room, cleaning, arranging, and carrying on like they NEVER do in your real house!
That's it! Between the baby pool, the tent, and the sand car your toddlers might never want to venture down to the edge of the ocean and they'll certainly be entertained.
What other things have you done?
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