Grandpa showed us around one of his favorite haunts - San Simeon State Beach
This past weekend we decided to make a trip down the California coast with our first stop being in Cambria to visit Grandma and Grandpa. Nieve and Ronan always have a blast in this charming costal hamlet, especially when it involves playing at the beach.
Grandma and Nieve enjoying the perfect beach day
We lucked out with the weather - sunny with just a slight breeze - so we decided to spend our Saturday at San Simeon State Beach. The water was magnificent, the winds mild, and the scenery was stunning. It was a perfect day for a leisurely stroll on the sand.
This is how Ronan feels about spending an afternoon at the beach
Ronan and Nieve (like most children) love all things about the beach. I enjoy watching the two of them flex their creativity in using both the water and sand.
Jubilation. For Ronan, that means running at breakneck speed.
Nieve started by testing out the wetted sand as a medium to write letters in (she did an "N" for Nieve). She also tried out her running legs, clearly enjoying the feeling of beach beneath her feet.
Grandpa, on a photo-walk
Ronan was also thrilled at the opportunity to run. He was a dizzying display of energy, running large, fast circles around the rest of us.
...with Nieve in fast pursuit
At one point he saw a large flock of seagulls standing in the sand and he decided the best thing to do was to simply chase after them, screeching in a loud, high-pitched voice.
Nieve had long since quit but Ronan kept at it
After the gulls scattered, they reformed and landed a hundred yards up the beach. The tireless Ronan simply ran on to their new resting place, screeching and scattering the gulls again.
Ronan took a rest from running to create some winged creatures of his own. Perhaps taking inspiration from his time in the snow, Ronan methodically made a 'family of sand angles'. His process was deliberate and effective; he made six of them (one for each of us at the beach), all easily recognizable as angels.
A little seal and his trail
Once finished with the angels Ronan flipped onto his belly and began to drag himself down the beach. When I asked him what he was doing, he replied, "Dad, I'm a seal. This is how seals move."
Nieve, a little startled by a crashing wave, comes running back to shore
Nieve joined Ronan in the sand play, trying to dig holes near the edge of the lapping waves. Occasionally the waves would get the two of them wet, resulting in a couple of soaked, chilly kids.
At this point we decided that wetsuits were essential to keeping hypothermia at bay for both Ronan and Nieve. Once shod in neoprene the kids resumed their frolicking in the ocean.
Nieve, hang on to that hat!
We stayed for a bit longer but dinnertime was fast approaching and we had to call it a (albeit wonderful) day. San Simeon beach is a fantastic place to visit, and during our next trip I think we'll try renting a kayak and exploring some natural caves on the north side of the cove. Thank you Grandma and Grandpa for a perfect stay!
Nieve at the close of a fantastic day