Sand with a side of blueberries

Lori Mabardi Connor

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

A few Fridays ago, I had the day off, and decided to be spontaneous and scoop my boys and toys and towels and chairs and snacks and drinks, and diapers and sunscreen and bug spray, and hats and just whimsically jump in the car and head to the beach! After 90 minutes I was ready to go!

 A good friend came with her 3 girls. We had 5 kids under 5 to two of us. I felt vulnerable...

The walk from the car to the beach was epic. Together, she and I looked like we were sherpas to a team of 15 explorers rising to the top of Everest.  We scuttled through a crazy crowded beach, and settled at the water, arms pulsating from carrying our cargo, sweat on our brow.  All our mini travelers arrived safely, walking through the lanes of cars and over the hot sand. Not a tear shed along the way - a miraculous feat!

Some want to swim, some want to sit, some want to eat blueberries that become slightly sandy, some want to eat sand, with a side of blueberries. We spray sunscreen, put on hats, more spray, please keep your hat on....   You need to go potty? But we just did 15 minutes ago, trek to the slightly yucky public bathroom again and again, over hot sand, can I pleeeeease tell my child to pee in the ocean? Don't step on that sand castle, no I didn't pack the blue shovel, I packed the green one and the white one.

I came home in need of a chair, a beer, and a moment of silence. But in the midst of it all were the slivers of sweetness that I had had a hankering for that very morning.

The kids were kind to each other, holding hands here and there to navigate the cars and the crowds. They created, imagined, dug and sculpted. They discovered a love of splashing in the waves and a crab in their bucket (dead maybe, but they didn't let it spoil the magic.)
 My eldest played Frisbee and made a new friend. My little one giggled as we played in the sand.  My eldest and I shared "I love you" winks from afar, and my little one, nestling his head in the crook of my neck, gave me the sweetest, tightest squeeze...

And so it was, my perfect day at the beach.