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6 Things All Families Should Do At the Beach

Summer is almost here. Can you hear the beach calling? I love taking my kids to the beach on hot summer days, but friends always ask me: what do you do with your kids all day? Don't you get bored? Don't they?!

Beach days aren't just about sitting back on a chaise lounge with a frosty drink (although a mom can dream). There are tons of other things you can do all day to keep the kids occupied. Building sandcastles, tossing around a ball and jumping the ocean waves is fun. But there are more ways to make your day at the beach, um, a day at the beach.

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1. Scavenger hunt

Create a list of objects to find or tasks to complete. Don't know what to put on a scavenger list? Here are a few ideas:

1. Count the number of umbrellas on the beach?

2. How many blue beach towels?

3. Collect six pink shells.

4. What are the names of the kids sitting next to you?

5. How many steps does it take to get from your beach towel to the ocean?

2. Moveable blackboard

Have your kids write their names or draw pictures in the wet sand before the waves come back and erase it.

3. Collect shells to paint later on a rainy day

Not every day will be a beach day this summer. That's why you should collect shells when you're on the beach and save them for the next rainy day. Rainy days are the worst over the summer. But you can make your next one a little better: find shells you collected at the beach, get out the paints and start crafting. Bring the beach inside without all the sand.

There are no TVs at the beach—use this as your time to connect.

4. Handprint memories

You can't go to the beach with kids and not make a sandcastle. It's sort of a rule. So make your usual sandcastle—then go for the upgrade. Use ocean water to make handprints. Bonus points if you can get a handprint on top of a sandcastle tower. Have your camera ready, you'll want to capture pics of those tiny prints.

5. Blow bubbles

Bring a bottle of bubbles and let the beach breeze do the rest. Kids love to pop bubbles. It's also a great way to make friends with the other kids on the beach. Opening a bubble wand always seems to make my family the most popular people on the beach.

6. Board games

You'll need the travel version, of course, otherwise say goodbye to all of those tiny pieces. But nothing's more fun than gathering under a beach umbrella and playing your favorite games as a family. (We love magnetic checkers.) These days with TV and iPads and all of our screens, it's hard to find family time. There are no TVs at the beach—use this as your time to connect.

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Enjoy your day at the beach. And don't forget to pack the sunscreen.

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Image via Twenty20/pim1973

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