On any given weekend if you ask my two preschoolers what they would like to do they always say “lets go to the beach!”
I love that they love the beach but since having a baby a few weeks ago the beach hasn’t been an option for us, especially on the extremely hot days.
Then last week we had a day where it was sunny but not overly hot and there was a nice breeze so we decided it was time to take my newborn daughter Vienna to the beach for the very first time at three weeks old.
As excited as I was, I knew I had to be very careful with a newborn and sun exposure.
I couldn’t just put some sunscreen on her because it is not recommended to put sunscreen on a baby before six months old.
Once we got to Currumbin Beach my nerves kicked in, we had so much stuff to set up before we could all sit down and relax, for a moment there I thought it might just be easier to jump back in the car and drive home.
We had just reached the point with the older two kids where all we had to take to the beach was sunscreen and towels and now with a new baby we were back to loading up the entire car again.
With all the stuff we had it took about 20 minutes to set up. Lucky for me my older two kids had run off to play and let us do what we had to do.
We had taken a sun tent with great UV protection that we put up for the very first time so as you can imagine there was a lot of “no that pole goes here not over there” and “is there meant to be spare parts?”
We had brought along a huge beach umbrella for the older two kids so they wouldn’t be running in and out of the sun tent all wet and sandy.
I had a fold out beach chair for myself so I could comfortably breastfeed, along with a large breastfeeding cover. We took extra beach towels to lay on the floor in the sun tent in case the sand was too hot, Vienna is a hot baby and can’t regulate her body temperature just yet.
The towels were also good to lay out around the sun tent to minimise the sand getting into everything, there is nothing worse than having to change a nappy with sand all over the place.
I took my stroller onto beach along with a baby sling for Vienna in case she became unsettled and I needed to take her for a walk.
I had packed a sun hat for Vienna and made sure she was wearing loose cotton clothing so she wouldn’t overheat.
When she gets a bit older I will take some water for her but for now if I find she needs fluids I’ll just give her a quick breastfeed.
We had headed off to the beach quite early, before it got too crowded and too hot.
If you had walked past us that morning I am sure you would have thought ‘what on earth is going on here, all they need now is the kitchen sink!’ but you do have to be extra careful when dealing with a newborn baby’s delicate skin.
Despite all the preparation and setting up time we had such a great morning, made some great memories and little Vienna had a quick feed and slept the entire time!
Words Amardy Baucke
Originally published in Coast Kids