Our 2020 beach trip

Maggie at the beach

Have you been to the beach yet this summer? Last week we went to the beach for first time this year. It’s funny that it took us until the end of August. But it is 2020 after all.

At first we didn’t want to go because the beaches seemed crowded, then I think beaches near us (or at least the parking lots) were closed. We almost went a few weeks before but we quarantined after finding out someone with visited with tested positive for Covid-19. The person is doing well, in case you’re wondering. Once that quarantine was over we decided to go to Santa Monica beach during the week to avoid any possible traffic or crowds.

It was fun to be back at our old stomping grounds. We drove past our last apartment, two of my past jobs, and one of Paul’s previous jobs, all in a quick minute.

We had such a nice time. It was Maggie’s second time at a beach. She seemed very happy to be there. She had a big smile on her face as she was wading in the water, which she was much too young to do last time.

She was 6 months old when we took her to Laguna Beach last summer. We hauled so much more stuff with us then, which was a bit of a pain to take up and down the stairs to the beach if I’m being honest. I think the main difference is that last time we took a cooler packed with bottles and baby food, as well as folding chairs. I didn’t mind just sitting on my beach towel this time and she doesn’t need milk often like before so we just brought shelf stable snacks that went in the diaper bag.

I thought I would share what I packed for this beach trip with a toddler.

What we packed

We had one reusable shopping bag filled with clothes, towels, and sunscreen. All three of us wore our swim suits there, so I packed a change of clothes for Maggie in the diaper bag and extra clothes for Paul and myself in the reusable bag. We each had our own towels. I also wore running shoes there, but brought sandals in the bag.

The diaper bag had the typical essentials: diapers, wipes, extra clothes, a jacket, bib and snacks. I also brought my purse and we each had a reusable water bottle.

We used most of the things I just mentioned. However Paul and I decided not use the public restrooms, therefore we didn’t change out of our swimsuits until we got home. I think they were closed, but I didn’t check. I’m still glad we brought the clothes just in case we really needed them.

Maggie at Santa Monica beach

What I would bring next time

I brought spray on sunscreen, baby lotion sunscreen, and baby face stick sunscreen. I still wish I would have brought more sunscreen though. The spray on sunscreen meant for us adults ran out with a quick spray on both my arms. Paul thought he would be okay without sunscreen and got really burned.

Baby powder is great for getting sand off skin and it is a beach essential. But I forgot it. Oops!We just tried to brush as much sand off as we could and sort of washed Maggie off with water from a water bottle.

I also wish I would have brought a wider variety of snacks. It didn’t really matter but would have been nice. I think Maggie had 3 or 4 cereal bars for lunch because that’s all I brought. Hey, we were all out of applesauce pouches and I didn’t want to bring any potentially messy fresh fruit.

We didn’t stay at the beach all that long. I didn’t keep track of the time, but it was around an hour. When I was younger, I would have been frustrated by that. But it felt like long enough for all of us. We had fun. There’s only so much to do on the sand and it gets tiring chasing a toddler around.

We left the beach around 12:30, after placing an order for pickup from one of our old favorite spots. (Oh yeah, did I mention we lived in Santa Monica before Maggie was born?) We ate our La Monarcha order in the car while sitting in the parking lot of a park where we used to go to the farmer’s market. Then we headed home and Maggie was asleep shortly after we got on the freeway. It was a short beach trip, but it was lovely.

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