Beach Must-Haves

This summer, I’ll be going to the beach. Many of you, I’m sure, will find yourself traveling to a land of sandy shores and dancing, salty waves. The car will be packed full with luggage, floaties, and your entire family crammed into one small space! There is one question critical to the success of your summer trip: what should I bring to the beach?

I’m glad you asked! 😉

1. Fashionable Swim-Suit

Anyone who has ever gone to the beach, knows that it is absolutely 100% necessary to have a swim-suit. However, there is a clear line between swim-suits you should stay away from – in my own personal opinion of course – and ones you should grab off the rack as fast as you can! There are some awesome choices, and here are a few tips if the swim-suit search has been rough.

For starters, don’t give up! It can be daunting, especially for women, to try on swim-suits and not feel satisfied. Let’s make one thing clear, Hollywood has a SERIOUSLY warped idea of what a normal, realistic girl’s body is like. I mean, c’mon. Size zero? Really? It’s like they’re asking people to have an eating disorder! And that is not, something I admire. So, when the swim-suit season comes, let’s have fun with it! Wear something that makes you feel beautiful (note: this does not mean that I am advertising for anyone to wear swim-suits that make them look like they’re so desperate for attention, that they come across as vulgar. Please don’t take offense at this, I’m not saying that’s what they think, do, or EVEN WANT. All I am saying, is the message certain swimsuits send, is not positive or classy).

Here are some swim-suits I love.

2. Stylish Cover-up

If you have a swim-suit, you’ve got to have a cover-up! There are so many cute, fun options! Recently, I bought myself an army green cover-up at Francesca’s that I love! I also have a pair of crochet/lace black pants that I put over my swim-suit. And though my detail-oriented heart would love it, not every cover-up is going to match your swim-suit. That’s ok! For example, my army green one doesn’t really go with any of my swim-suits – but I’m definitely still going to wear it! Now, my black pants are pretty much going to match anything since black is a neutral color.

3. Flip Flops and Sandals Galore!

Alright. Confession time. I love shoes, well, shopping in general really xD Honestly though, for the beach pretty much the only shoes you’re going to need are flip flops and sandals. You can bring a pair of tennis shoes if you want to, but that’s more of a personal choice than necessity.

Tip: If you’re looking for a really comfortable pair of flip flops, Yellow Box should be your go-to! I have a pair and they’re super comfy, plus, they can get wet (at least in my experience xD).

4. Ocean Toys

What’s the beach without the ocean? I’ve always loved boogie boarding, especially when I was younger. Other fun toys to bring in the ocean are inflatables!

5. Sun Coverage

It never fails. Every time someone goes to the beach, somebody in the family gets sunburned. Bring sun screen, aloe – absolutely a lifesaver for bad sunburns, and use it! Trust me. You don’t want to be miserable when you’re at the beach from a painful burn!

6. Reading Material

The beach is the perfect spot for reading! Even if you’re not the most avid reader, the lulling ocean waves serves as the perfect medication to help you dive into the pages of a story. Some of my favorite books/series are Love Amid The Ashes by Mesu Andrews – a biblical fiction book about Job, absolutely wonderful and very eye-opening; First Date by Krista McGee – an awesome, hilarious tale about a girl who gets caught up in a TV show about a group of young women, all vying to win a date with the president’s son and how she finds God in that; and The Christy Miller series by Robin Jones Gunn, about a girl’s journey through middle and high school, college, marriage, and beyond, through friends, struggles, embarrassing moments, and learning how to live a faith-filled life.

If you really cannot stand reading fictional books, bring a magazine! HGTV and Food Network are great options! Fair warning, you might be hungry and feeling the urge to DIY by the last section 😉

I hope this has been of some help! 🙂 Comment below for any other questions or remarks! Are you going to the beach this summer?

~ Southern Dreamer

The Guardians of the Galaxy Movie Review

Image result for guardians of the galaxy movie posterRecently, I watched The Guardians of the Galaxy for the first time. This was definitely different than any Marvel movie I’ve seen before, with it being set in a much bigger universe than the others. Of course, Thor’s movies have also been set in space, with some Earth scenes; this, however, was different. It gave you a better idea of how wide the scoop of the Marvel universe is in terms of Earth not being the only world concerned.

There were some great fighting scenes, as with any Marvel film, complete with weaponry, space ships, and acrobatic/martial arts. The main character, Peter Quill – or Starlord as he calls himself, reminded me of Marvel’s version of Han Solo. He’s quirky, funny – gets himself into a slew of trouble, and despite everything, at the end of the day, he has a good heart. Like the famed Star Wars character, Peter is high on people’s list to capture, and is definitely not buddies with the majority of the star studded, space neighborhood. And so, when he gets captured after so long, he finds himself stuck in a high-security prison with several other beings that he managed to run into along the way.

You have the intelligent raccoon called Rocket, the living tree that is a mystery to everyone and only speaks three words – “I am Groot,” the green, Black-Widow of space named Gamora, and another guy who tries to kill Gamora early on, Drax. This rag-tag group of people, who really only cares for their own self and interests, comes together in a hilarious and intense way. Throughout most of the movie, conflict arises between one or more parties, and poor Peter Quill continually tries to step in and smooth things over. Or as he said, no one is getting killed on my ship! (Something like that XD)

If you like Marvel movies, or just movies with action and humor in general, then I think you will find The Guardians of the Galaxy very enjoyable! Alright, that was my spoiler free review! If you read on any farther, fair warning, there are going to be some spoilers – though, I will try to steer clear of major ones.

***WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD***

***LAST WARNING***

***TURN BACK NOW IF YOU DON’T WANT SPOILERS***

Ok, with that out of the way, here are some of my favorite things about this film (in no specific order).

1. Introduction of new species/beings Image result for corpsman dey guardians of the galaxy

I thought it was cool how they brought in different species and beings that have not been seen in the Marvel universe before. Some of them looked exactly like humans, except for the color of their skin. Others were not similar to humanity in any way, shape, or form. It would be great if we could ever get some of their specie names and see how they’re all related.

2. Star Wars similarities

I really could not go through this list, without bringing this up. I’ve already mentioned that Peter Quill reminded me a lot of Han Solo, being someone rough-around-the-edges, but at the end of the day, he makes the right choice and helps people. I noticed, additionally, that when Gamora, Peter, Rocket, Groot, and Drax are entering the planet/city/etc – I think it used to be a mining community if I’m remembering correctly? – to sell the orb and get the money, some similarities to the Star Wars planets and more dangerous cantinas.

Image result for yondu's arrow guardians of the galaxy3. That arrow weapon

Yondu’s arrow is freaking awesome XD How does that thing work??? It’s kind of eerie if you think about it. There’s this blue guy whistling some tune, and an arrow floating in the air. Then before you know it, everyone around him is dead! Crazy. I thought that was a really cool weapon addition though.

4. Earth references

It was hilarious how no one understood Peter’s references XD Especially, the one where he makes the cutting-the-head-off-motion and Drax, along with the others, is literally like, “WHAT IS THIS GUY DOING.” So funny. And when he calls Rocket a raccoon, and says there are a ton like him on Earth, Rocket goes off on a, “THERE IS NO ONE LIKE ME,” rant.

5. ThanosImage result for thanos guardians of the galaxy

Wow. Like…WHAT. First of all, the entire idea of Thanos having a family is weird. Galaxy murderers should not have children. Just say’in – life lesson there y’all. I thought both Nebula and Gamora were awesome, creatively done characters. I am curious, however, as to why Nebula is so hateful towards her sister, and why she stayed with Thanos. I mean, he’s not exactly in the running for “Father of the Year” award. And, apparently she can regrow lost body parts. Well, that’s certainly a unique ability.

Furthermore, did anyone else wonder why if Thanos is so powerful, he chooses to live on a rock? It’s not even a nice rock. Literally looks like he dropped a boulder on a boring ‘ol rocky planet and decided that was going to be his throne. Personally, I’m not really getting take-over-the-universe vibes from that. Anyone with me?

Overall, I really enjoyed watching The Guardians of the Galaxy. I appreciated the creative touches that the film’s team added to this, and can’t wait to see how they expand on that in the next one. I thought baby Groot was seriously so adorable, and as a romantic, enjoyed those moments between Gamora and Peter. To those of you who have seen it, what did y’all think of The Guardians of the Galaxy? Favorite moments? Loved it, hated it? Let me know in the comments below!

~ Southern Dreamer