15 Things I Learned on Our Beach Vacation

We had a fantastic week at the beach last week during which I learned a few things I didn’t know (or learned again) when it comes to beach vacations.

#1 – Sand gets EVERYWHERE!

#2 – I prefer the pool to the beach. (I love the idea of the beach, but when kids are involved prefer the convenience of the pool. I don’t enjoy being a pack mule.)

#3 – My kids yell a lot when they are excited. They yelled a lot on vacation.

#4 – They also light to fight over who gets to push the elevator buttons. We alternated days so they wouldn’t push our buttons.

#5 – And they were excited about the little things. “Mom, MOM! C’mere, QUICK!!!” I go rushing over to my 5-year old who says,  “Look, look!….A palm tree!” They also liked the little lizards that hang out near the pool. We told them to try to catch them which was VERY entertaining for us.

#6 – When your kids are distracted by vacation fun, they won’t tell you they have to go to the bathroom until it’s almost too late.

#7 – Vacation is the only time I will eat a Krispy Kreme donut while wearing that reminder known as a bathing suit.

#8 – Don’t pack two right tennis shoes for your daughter.

#9 –  Don’t play a dice game on the 5th floor deck or you will find yourself down by the pool fishing a di out of pine straw mulch.

#10 – Keep cards and other entertainment in your purse. And of course the Trump Card of Bribery – gum!

#11 – On the drive down, I gave my kids prizes every-so-many hours because I read other people do this and it sounded like a fun thing to do. Maybe there’s a better way to do it, but it totally TOTALLY backfired on us! In addition to “When will we get there?” my youngest repeatedly asked, “When do I get my next prize?” This prompted lectures about how good they have it with a DVD player in the car and my version of a walking-to-school-barefoot-in-the-snow car-trip story which goes more like: as a kid I endured road trips with my mom that included hours and hours of Meatloaf and Neil Diamond – enough to make you foam at the mouth and pass out in the back of an 80s version of a Ford Escort!

#12 – It’s fun to be on vacation when the Olympics are on. It was cool to watch the games at night before bed and then watch them try out different swim techniques and gymnastics moves in the pool.

#13 – You can eat anything you want on vacation. Okay not really, but in my mind you can.

#14 – The older my kids get the fewer restrictions we have and the more activities we can do. I also like that they are into board games and cards (and dice games!).

#15 – Tourist traps can be really fun. We had a ball at one of those go-kart places. And I learned a very important lesson on the bumper boats that I will tell you about tomorrow…

Your turn, what has vacation taught you? And are you a pool bum or a beach bum?

11 Responses to 15 Things I Learned on Our Beach Vacation

  1. Beth @ Free Stylin' August 7, 2012 at 1:39 am #

    Haha! Your vacations sound like ours! My kids fight over the elevator buttons, too, and I realized I enjoy the beach alone and the pool with my kids. Those boys are fearless, and it just freaks me out that they are going to drown in the ocean. So glad y’all had a good trip. :)

    • Heather August 7, 2012 at 9:34 pm #

      I think you might be on to something there, Sister! Beach with grown ups, or alone or with a beverage might be quite nice. Umbrella required. For me and for my drink.

      Hope you are well!

  2. Jennifer August 7, 2012 at 5:10 pm #

    I am a New England lake bum. And our vacation taught me are 1. A 19 hour road trip is waaaayyyy too long 2. don’t pack so much, we lived in swim suits and pj’s! and 3. that family time is so precious and gets easier to pack up and do as they get older.

    Glad you had a great vacation and can’t wait to hear all about it!!
    I was thinking of you today – I can’t wait for our simple and easy park days once the weather cools again!

    • Heather August 7, 2012 at 9:32 pm #

      And how! (Or a glass of wine with the girls). Thought about you today, too! Every time I see a car like yours I wave in case it’s you, but it never is. So, mostly I am just being very friendly. To anyone in town who drives your same car.

  3. Shell August 7, 2012 at 5:15 pm #

    I believe your you can eat anything on vacation one, too!

    I used to like the pool better than the beach with the kids. That changed this summer, though.

    • Heather August 7, 2012 at 9:18 pm #

      That’s interesting. Maybe it will change for us, too!

  4. Brooke August 7, 2012 at 5:16 pm #

    Well, I have only been to the beach with one child (3 years old last summer) & we LOVED the beach! We played paddle ball & frisbee, bulit all sorts of things in the sand and jumped the waves. Mason had a blast & we loved watching him take it all in. The DVD player was definitely our friend in the car! We took our own umbrella, & I was so glad we did. It was our first vacation, & my little man did awesome!

    Now, I say all that knowing from the (almost) 14 weeks that we have had our second son how going from one to two kids changes EVERYTHING. So I will add to these comments next summer when (or IF) I have survived a beach vacation with 2 little ones. :)

    • Heather August 7, 2012 at 9:29 pm #

      14 weeks already – Wow! (I am sure that didn’t feel fast to you.)

      The water was REALLY rough and Charlie got knocked down with water up his nose. So he was out of sorts after that. Molly could have stayed all day. Bert broke the boogie board in half which was super funny to me. I wish I had just stayed in the sand and not gotten in the water which made the sand stick.

      We did have fun playing in the sand. But I think I need to go with a different mindset. I knew I wasn’t going to love it and then (surprise!) I didn’t.

      And after there was sand in the car and we stopped to vacuum it. Didn’t have enough quarters, so we got change and then looked at the vacuum hose which had been cut off with a knife. Next gas station. The hose was fine, but that one required more quarters. Into gas station #2 for change…

      And so after that we just went to the pool.


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