Adventures at the Beach

Last weekend we went to the beach with our daughter and grandchildren. As usual, we spent an hour arguing about my driving ability and being lost for every ten minutes of enjoyment. It was a great time had by all. In fact, We're already talking about going again.

Having not been to the beaches of Florida for some time, I realized we'd forgotten some basic knowledge about beach-going. So, in grand JL Stratton fashion, I must propagate my pedagogy to the world so that you may learn from my mistakes.

First and foremost, if I could give you just one piece of advice, that would be:

Wear sunscreen.

Of course, this is followed my instruction that you should apply the sunscreen in places you would not think the rays of the sun might reach because, at the beach anyway, the sun seems to defy all physics and logical thinking to create sunburns in places one might previously thought of as "covered."


Bring a swim suit.

I know. One would think this is a given but apparently, not for me. Overcoming my lack of prior planning forced me to venture into the sea, holding my grandchildren-one at a time-tightly across the fat folds of my ever-increasing midsection, while sporting my plaid shorts. At least I had the sense to remove my shirt. Although I somehow was not fortuitous enough to gather enough wit to apply sunscreen to my freshly exposed aforementioned midsection while frolicking amongst the fish and waves. Sadly, I succeeded in making myself look like some kind of cross between a striped Easter egg and a fully cooked lobster.


Be willing to part with vast amounts of your money.

Thirsty? Want some water? Sure, it's available ... for a price. Again, a little forethought might have allowed me to avoid this, but that's just not my way.

Fortunately for us, we were traveling with our daughter who's been to the beach more recently and planned for such events. Plus, she's a mommy and has aquired mommy ninja skills. She seemed to have an endless supply of clothing for the children , and was right there with the proper toiletries when the granddaughter had to stop along the highway on the way to the beach for an emergency pee break, which turned into something else entirely.

I guess my wife and I had forgotten just what it took to prepare for a simple day at the beach with young children. It did make me feel better though, when I saw a young man struggling to make his way across the white sands with a stroller. Good thing is that, if this young man had any sense at all, this would be the last time he attempted such a treacherous journey over sand with the miniscule hard rubber wheels of a stroller.

Ah, other people's pain and suffering. Somehow, it always makes me feel better about myself.

Just saying.


  1. Good beach rules. Your tan/burns sounds like it has some interesting though painful designs to it.

  2. LOL; even at 50 now, I'm a prepared mom. I have 5 children, the youngest is 15 years old, but I've been raising kids, and grandkids, for so long that I can't help but be in the mommy mode.

    I work in social services, an I'm amazed at the number of parent who show up for a 3 hour long appointment with all kids in tow, and don't have so much as a crayon to keep the kids occupied. Half way through the interview they tell me an 18 month old needs a diaper change, or a 6 month old needs a bottle, or a 5 year old is too bored to continue.

    I can't do anything to alieve the diaper or formula needs unless Community Action is on site and opens their treasure vault (a closet barely big enough to fit a high chair), but boredom I can relieve as I keep a stock of cars, plastic dolls, crayons and coloring book, and even some adult word games at my desk.

    But, I always wonder why a mom (or dad as now-days there are many single dads applying for welfare) doesn't think to bring food, drink or a stash of toys to any appointment. I mean; I haven't had a little kid in my car in years but I have toys!

    As a grandpa, I'm not surprise you weren't prepared for a day on the beach with the kiddies. But I have to commend your daughter for being prepared. Kids have the same needs no matter where they are - home or out. I like your tips though about the sunscreen, water and swimsuit. Although I'd likely forget the swimsuit for myself also cuz I don't go in the water and if a kid needs saving, I doubt I'd care what I was wearing.

    Ahem; I can blister-burn in about 15 minutes in the sun, less time if in the water, regardless of the SPF I put on so I NEVER plan to go out of the shade.

    "Grandma will you swim with me?"
    "NO! Reach in the cooler and get me another wine cooler on your way to find your mommy please."

    On an unrelated note: Thank you for your support at my blog with my depressing move post. I don't normally post something that personal, and I was surprised the next morning that I'd actually posted that diatribe. I would have deleted it, but too many people had responded. I didn't reply to every comment, just did a general reply, but I wanted to stop by and say Thanks to you personally.

    Yeah, I did recognize your Ellison James alter ego. I was all like "Is that JL?" and in the next comment you confirmed my suspicion. I have purchased 1 or 3 of your novels, but I have not read them. No excuses. They are on my list to read soon.

    Sooner than later, actually. I'm on this mission to read books that I purchased for pure interest, not blogger hype, and your novels top my reading list. If you've read much of my blog, you know I like to have author interviews/guest posts when I review a novel.

    Are you up to a review or guest post in about a month? I sometimes forget to return to post comments and look for a response, and I expect with the stress I'm under I'll be even more inattentive, so please e-mail your response to donnahole (at) gmail (dot) com for your preferences. Or a NO to the post if you're not interested, no offense either way. You may even have a more recent novel publication you'd like me to read/review/post about.

    And if you're wanting to post the interview under your pseudonym, I'm good with that also.

    Let me know Hon, and again, thanks for your support.


  3. Oh Jim your stories are as humorous and enlightening as always. :)

  4. I think checking your floor locks & wheels regularly is important because wheels & locks requires a proper maintenance.

    floor locks & appliance casters


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