The sun was hot and burned brightly on our skin, especially the bottoms of our feet as we went back and forth from our shade tent, to the water. One little boy saw the “water” for the first time, and by watching his older siblings, he knew just what to do, without fear of anything.
Baby Sarah remembered the ocean experience from her first time, back in February, and reminded us once again that she does not LIKE the ocean. She gripped my arms as I held her, with both her arms, each time the wave came up loudly at my feet. Loudly, she protested on and on until her Papa finally got her to drift away to nap-land.
I was happy to see that the older children could still play; jumping waves, laughing, building sand walls, playing football and frisbee, throwing sand at each other…so many smiles, so many, made my heart sing to give them the gift of this day, at the ocean. They didn’t want to leave. They wanted to watch the sunset. Their laid-back friendliness attracted other little children and there is one picture up there…I had taken several of the same shot….before I realized that the little boy in the group that I thought was Caleb, wasn’t, and Caleb was off by himself!
We left the house unaware that Davy had forgotten SHOES, so we had to stop on our way to buy him some sandals. Imagine the feelings we had, when we discovered at the end of the day, that the new sandals had vanished. He was meant to be shoeless (?) So that’s how he ate his dinner at Ruby Tuesdays, journeying back and forth to the salad bar. With bare feet.
As I sat (at brief intervals) in my own beach chair, I was grateful to read through five pages of my magazine that I had chosen for the time at the beach. I truly was honored to look at all the specimens that came my way, as child after child brought me things to see.
Jacob forgot to apply sunscreen. Oh wait. No, he “couldn’t find it.” How he missed all the busy applying amongst the other eight family members, I have no idea. But, he came home with a sunburn. Thankfully, he kept his shirt on all day so it’s not as bad as it could be.
As parents, Rich and I soak up experiences like this, just as we soaked up the hot sun today. It was a great day, watching the children be themselves, the little people we love so much. Our friends. Jacob with the burn, Ethan who is everyone’s friend, Grace who calmly explains things to us, and has long hair, Davy who doesn’t wear shoes, Caleb who wants his birthday to be tomorrow (it’s the 9th), Seth who wasn’t afraid, and Sarah Joy, who was, and found comfort in her father’s arms.