Though we were a bit disappointed that there were no beach chairs or umbrellas for rent, we made the best of it. As predicted, there was nobody there and the water was refreshingly cool after our sweaty trek out there! Look at that empty beach! How nice! Christin, however, decided that the beach was not her thing. She was tired, but sweaty and a bit uncomfortable trying to sleep in the stroller, so I ended up holding her most of the morning. Between our trip to Thailand (where she loved the sand and the water) and this trip, something must have changed in her mind. She wanted nothing to do with the sand and seemed scared by the water. I tried just dipping her toes in, but she clung to me with tenacious grip, so I gave up and we had some mommy-daughter cuddle time instead. (That's just what you always want when it's 90 plus degrees and everybody is sticky, sandy, and sweaty, right? :))
However, Christin's crankiness didn't stop John and the girls from making the traditional sand castle! This castle, made without any tools except John's hands, has a center "lake" with a retaining wall which was later broken so that Clara Anne's "princess" (a small bit of driftwood) could find her way down to the sea. Clara Anne would have been happy to stay at the beach all day. She's a beach bum if there ever was one! Chloe vacillates--she's having fun one moment and then she's shrieking the next moment, all because some flying fish landed on her shoulder! Sheesh! (Ok, true confessions--I saw the flying fish in the swimming area and thus did not venture out past a few yards into the water! The water here wasn't clear and so I couldn't see what might be nibbling on my toes! I know. I'm a wimp.)
Here's Clara Anne enjoying the castle after her princess had already been set free and floated down to the ocean.
We realized that we needed to replenish our sunscreen supply and it was time for everybody to get a little lunch, so cleaned up and headed back to the oceanside deck where there were lots of picnic tables. After a delicious Subway lunch (John's favorite!) we headed back down to the beach to check out a kid's carnival that had been setting up all morning while we were playing. It turned out to be really fun! There were all sorts of activities for the kids to do, set up right on the beach, and the kids could play as long as they wanted and do whatever activities they liked! Clara Anne absolutely loved this. She played and played and played with other kids and wasn't shy or scared a bit. Chloe was feeling a bit tired by then and was less enthusiastic, but Christin finally fell asleep in the stroller so we had bought a little time. Fun times at the beach carnival!
A three-inch-deep pool of soapy suds with fun animals to ride on...
Soapy suds for everyone!
Making friends and having fun!
Making friends and having fun!
A bounce house--look how much sun Chloe had already gotten that day! Thankfully the girls escaped with only slight redness on their shoulders. I kept slathering them with spf 50 but I guess with all the water and sun, it wore off quickly.
And here's the only picture I got of Christin looking happy that day! She had finally napped and was feeling better. On the way back to the bus, John's sandal broke a strap and so he had to go hunting for other footwear. He found a pair of cheap flip-flops and then we took a detour to an outlet mall in that area before heading home. We were going to Disneyland the next day and he didn't want to have to wear flip-flops all day! (Too-small flip-flops at that!) Chloe slept in John's arms all the way to the mall, including being transferred in and out of the stroller on and off the bus, and then slept through almost our entire shopping excursion. We finally returned home after 9pm and hadn't had supper yet! Baths, supper, and prayers happened in record time and we all crashed hard that night. Whew! A day at the beach can really tire you out! Play hard, sleep hard--that's the way to do vacation with kids!