Here are my 5 beach bag must haves:
Sunscreen. I don't care about being tan... anymore (please don't judge college Shannon with her SPF 4 Banana Boat Tanning Oil). Yes I appreciate a healthy summer glow but for the most part I have fully embraced my Pacific Northwest skin tone. I am basically translucent. I will definitely look like a lobster before day 1 in Hawaii is over if I don't keep myself lathered up. I also have reached an age where I'm aware of my age and want to protect my skin from future wrinkles and lines so I especially don't care to get any color on my face. This is my favorite sunscreen for my face. It's super lightweight, and doesn't look or feel greasy. I prefer a cream sunscreen for my face so I can be extra sure I'm covered and then I use a spray for the rest of my body.
A straw hat. Undoubtedly my freckles will be out in full force after all that glorious sun but to be doubly sure my face is protected I'm gonna be sure to wear a hat as often as possible.
Sunglasses. Duh. My RayBan aviators are my all time favorites but I also love heart shaped sunglasses just for funsies.
Backgammon. I don't know why but I always think of backgammon as a beach game. I guess my parents always brought their board on vacations. So naturally I just had to get a board for T.J. and I to use. I found this adorable travel size one with magnetic pieces. T.J. doesn't know this yet but I plan for us to have an ongoing backgammon tournament and see who wins the most games by the end of our trip.
Books. Books. More Books! One of my favorite parts of any vacation is having all that time to read! There is nothing more relaxing than laying under the beach umbrella and getting sucked into a good book. It's amazing how much more reading I get done when I have nothing else on my to-do list except to take a dip in the ocean and maybe have a nap later in the day. Couple that with several long-ish flights, and unavoidable layovers, and I have to stop myself from packing a small library. It may be optimistic, but here are the books I'm bringing:
(source. save one of those loungers for me!)