Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Beach Babies

This year was Jack's third year vacationing in Ocean City. His first trip was when he was only two months old. Then last year, he was just over a year and was adorable. He was covered in sand head to toe and ate a lot of it. He loved to knock over with his whole body any sand castle anyone built. We put him on the rides at the boardwalk and took his picture. He started tickling people last year. He would walk up to you, tickle you and giggle. He was just sooo cute!

This year he is older and more adventurous yet still cautious. He would stand at the edge of the water waiting for the next wave to crash. He was a little unsure; it might be really big and scary. But when it was just the right height of water that got him all wet but didn't knock him over he would run back away giggling and laughing at the pure joy of it.

This was Sarah's first trip to the beach and she seemed to like it alright. Each day we would lather her up with sunscreen because I was afraid her little fair skin would get burned. I even insisted on sunscreening her head to protect her little scalp. I do think she got some sun. Despite my best efforts, her little arms were pink for a day or two. I think she just has my fair, easily burned skin.

At this age she is changing so much so quickly. During our beach trip she had her first meal of rice cereal and loved it. She opened her mouth like a baby bird and dove her head into the spoon.
We are getting ready to go back to the beach for a second trip this year and I am looking forward to relaxing and soaking in some more of the salty air. There is something about babies at the beach. It's like I can see them changing and growing right before my eyes. It's one of those yearly traditions that I look back on and marvel at what the babies did or said or how they had grown. It's kind of like Christmas. We take a lot of pictures and look back at them throughout the year. It's a yearly milestone that preserves their childhood in this one week in this one place at this one time. These are the pictures that make my heart ache because next year at the beach they won't look like this. Jack will be doing three-year-old things and Sarah will be doing one-year-old things. They will be different people in a year. I am excited to see who they will become, but I will be sad for the babies they were. Tears sting my eyes when I look back at their pictures. I tell my husband that when they go off to college he will find me melted into a puddle on the floor of each of their bedrooms looking at these pictures.

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