Sunday, June 8, 2008

Slimy Castles

What is a slimy castle? It's also known as a drizzle castle, or mud castle. It is made with wet sand that you hold in your hand and let pile up on top of itself as it slips through your fingers. My son calls them slimy castles, because to him, wet beach sand feels slimy.

We built about a thousand sand castles. We dug almost that many holes too. My four year old likes to dig holes in the sand until you hit the water--known as a slimy pit. From said slimy pit, you are to build slimy castles until he has decided you have built enough. We permanently altered the erosion pattern on Litchfield beach this past week. We were actually able to bury our son standing straight up one afternoon we had to dig so far.

Repetition is the spice of life for infants (and four year olds too). OVer and over we made castles and then knocked them down. I kept drizzling sand on the baby's chubby little feet. He was flabbergasted that his feet would disappear. He'd stretch out and go stiff with laughter and his little feet would pop up from under the sand. Then we would sit in the edge of the ocean and let the waves wash over our legs. My younger son thought this was great fun. He kept trying to catch the waves in his hands. My older son liked watching the mussels work their way back into the sand when the water would uncover them.

The beach is my favorite place to visit. Each year I get excited. I make my Walmart run for swim diapers, sunscreen, cheap sun glasses, and extra elastic to sew into the floppy bucket hats to keep them on in the wind. I love to pack for the beach. When we get there, I immediately have to go straight to the ocean to make sure it is still there. I've done this since I could walk. My older son has adopted this tradition too. He went straight for the waves, clothes on and all. It was a precious sight. There is nothing like watching a child run with wild abandon, no fear, and sheer unbridled joy down the beach as fast as their little legs will pump.

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