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Tuesday, August 29, 2023

Dinner at the beach (or cheapskate dining out)

our view from the bench

We've skipped this family favorite tradition the past few summers. Prior to the Covid shutdowns, my family has taken dinner to the beach one night during summer. 

In case you missed it, summer is running out of time. When this occurred to all of us, we decided to do a dinner at the beach right away. We had fabulously warm weather over the weekend, with Sunday slightly warmer. My daughters wanted to swim, so we chose high tide in the late afternoon. (High tide allows for less hazardous swimming at our local beach.)

my dinner 

We made burgers at home, washed some of our tree apples, filled a jug with water, and packed supplies like cups, plates, napkins, and a fork and knife for my bunless burger.

Of course, with this beautiful, end of the summer weather, we weren't the only ones who thought to make an excursion to the beach on a Sunday evening. One pass through the packed parking lot told us we'd have to park up the hill in town and walk down. Fortunately, once at the beach we found a nice bench available to eat our dinners and to use as home-base for our seaside activities. Fun swimming, wading and a little sand play as a bonus to our waterside meal.

You already know this about my family, we rarely eat in restaurants. Eating in our own kitchen. dining room or on the patio can feel repetitive and mundane after a while. Taking our dinners someplace else is our way of combatting home-meal fatigue, without spending extra $$ on the meal.

I'm really glad that we restarted this favorite summer tradition, even if it was just in the nick of time. Summers fade quickly in the PNW. 

What are your must-do end of summer plans?


  1. And we have Lake Michigan about 30 minute drive but rarely get there even our son lives 5 minutes from the lake. Mostly because you wait in your car in line to get in and often when you get there they turn you away because they are full.

    We are hoping to take a small trip overnight very soon for our anniversary but may have to cancel as we're dealing with an elderly parent living at her own home but showing signs of dementia/memory issues/alzheimers and staying with us for flight risk reasons until we can get her to a memory care unit. She's not the easy type of dementia but more volatile and upset most of the time. It's been a very difficult week and it's not over yet.

    1. Alice, I know first hand how difficult it can be to care for someone with dementia. I hope you can find a place for her soon. Prayers for you and your family.

    2. Alice, I'm so sorry you have to deal with this. My dad had dementia, and life tends to revolve around keeping your loved one safe--I hope you find a memory care unit that you are satisfied with.

    3. Hi Alice,
      I'm so sorry for what you and your family are going through right now. I will keep you all in my prayers.
      I do hope you and your husband will be able to take an anniversary trip. Happy anniversary, by the way!

    4. Alice, the comment above is me, Lili. I forgot to fill in my name where needed.

  2. Sounds like a lovely outing. Most of our summer has been too hot to do much outside. I'm looking forward to our milder fall weather. Now if we could just get the milder weather to line up with the longer days, how great that would be. I guess that's caledl S. Cal.

    1. Hi Live and Learn,
      I hope you get a mild September with lots of warm and clear days to enjoy the last of summer.

  3. We did a lot of our end-of-summer activities when my son was home. In addition to breakfast on the beach, we also played putt-putt, went out for ice cream, and watched the sunset over Lake Michigan. We are closer to the lake than Alice is and have several points of easy access--I'm sorry that isn't true for Alice, as well. I took my daughter and her best friend for a beach day last week--it was incredibly foggy and I ended up wrapping up in a blanket (the wind off the lake was chilly) but the girls had fun in the water. We are having a gorgeous day today with cooler temps, so I'm hoping we can go hiking this evening. That's probably it for our summer plans.

    So interesting to me, Lili, that high tide is the safer time to swim where you are. We don't get much tide action on Lake Michigan, but rip currents are a common occurrence and we have always been very careful to avoid "red flag" days at the beach. This is a good reminder to me that you need to know the safety concerns of any body of water that you enter.

    1. Hi Kris,
      Your summer activities all sound fun. I haven't played putt-putt golf in years. I'll have to see if we even have any mini golf courses in the area still.

      With the high tide and swimming at this particular beach, a high tide means swimmers are staying within the rock jetty that gives some protection from currents, as well as the Sound's bottom doesn't drop off as suddenly as it does when the tide is low and swimmers are further out. We had rip tides in So. Calif when I was growing up. Those are scary.

  4. Our neighbor's mother is in long term care for the past three years because she has dementia. However, LTC benefits will run out next year and the family will care for her at home. The son said the difficult part of care has been done for them which was the initial transition from memory loss, when a new routine was introduced. I hope your family, Alice, will have this crucial help from the memory care unit at this time.

    We don't have seasons so we don't do anything special at the end of summer. I think we're missing out on the excitement. Glad you had such a wonderful day at the beach.



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