My favorite. People say not to pick a favorite. It’s impossible not to. The sound of the beach waves, smell of the salty air, the sand, endless possibilities of activities, fishing, surfing, sand castles, collecting shells, capturing critters, exploring. The sunshine; its enveloping warmth. Being lazy or being active. From bringing only a towel and a good book to schlepping almost everything we own. The beach is restorative. You bring whatever it is you feel you need to bring with you to the beach. But, really, all you need is the beach. It’ll take care of you.

Now, how the beach takes care of you varies. If you are solo at the beach, it’s very peaceful and regenerative. Whereas, if you are in schlep everything you own mode with you and your family, its beauty and the beach paired with a little beauty and the beast. With all of the day’s activities and fun comes whining, tantrums and falling apart for the kids, and tired parents.