living in a coastal town america

15 Things Only Coastal Kids Know For 'Shore'

Sand, Salt, and Sunscreen are all you need in the summer.

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Growing up on the Northeast coast, I definitely took a lot for granted. Going to the beach every weekend in the summer was a family tradition. It was a common one among many coastal families. It wasn't until I left for college in Virginia where the closest beach is about four hours away, that I realized how different living on the coast is. You're surrounded by water and there's nothing better than catching the fresh sea breeze.

Here are 15 things that coastal kids know to be true.

1. Fresh seafood is at your fingertips

Lobster, shrimp, cod, haddock, you name it. You take it for granted and seafood from anywhere else just isn't the same.

2. On a beautiful day, you can head to the beach without having to drive hours

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3. Nautical patterns & vineyard vines become part of your everyday wardrobe

4. You find it funny that people come from all over the place to vacation close to your home

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You can spot the tourists from a mile away.

5. You can choose from a variety of beaches to go to

You definitely have your favorites but you're willing to switch up your beach plans when you have to.

6. You can escape to your summer house on the water any time

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Need some fresh air? You know just where to go.

7. Putting on sunscreen is like second nature

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You've got every degree SPF depending on how strong the UV rays are that day.

8. A cloudy day is still a beach day

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Sun or no sun you're always down for some salty air and sand.

9. You’re a pro tuber

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You've learned a thing or two and you know how to hold on for dear life.

10. You got your boating license before you got your driver’s license

And you think it's totally normal.

11. You can wear your bathing suit to the grocery store

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And it's totally normal.

12. You’re more than used to the offshore breeze and wouldn’t have it any other way

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Voluminous hair is the new trend.

13. You’re a natural at making campfires on the beach

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Your cabinets are always stocked with graham crackers, Hershey's chocolate, and marshmallows.

14. Shoes don’t exist in the summer and your feet are used to it

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No shoes, no problem.

15. Your collection of sea glass is constantly growing

But it's never enough, you need more.

Cover Image Credit:

https://pixabay.com/en/cape-cod-yarmouth-massachusetts-1578506/

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PSA: Keep Your Body-Negative Opinions Away From Little Girls This Summer

But our own baggage shouldn't be shoved on to those we surround ourselves with.

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It's officially swimsuit season, y'all.

The temperature is rising, the sun is bright and shining, and a trip to the beach couldn't look more appealing than it does right now. This is the time of year that many of us have been rather impatiently waiting for. It's also the time of year that a lot of us feel our most self-conscious.

I could take the time to remind you that every body is a bikini body. I could type out how everyone is stunning in their own unique way and that no one should feel the need to conform to a certain standard of beauty to feel beautiful, male or female. I could sit here and tell you that the measurement of your waistline is not a reflection of your worth. I completely believe every single one of these things.

Hell, I've shared these exact thoughts more times than I can count. This time around, however, I'm not going to say all these things. Instead, I'm begging you to push your insecurities to the side and fake some confidence in yourself when you're in front of others.

Why?

Because our negative self-image is toxic and contagious and we're spreading this negative thinking on to others.

We're all guilty of this, we're with family or a friend and we make a nasty comment about some aspect of our appearance, not even giving a single thought to the impact our words have on the person with us. You might think that it shouldn't bother them- after all, we're not saying anything bad about them! We're just expressing our feelings about something we dislike about ourselves. While I agree that having conversations about our insecurities and feelings are important for our mental and emotional health, there is a proper and improper way of doing it. An open conversation can leave room for growth, acceptance, understanding, and healing. Making a rude or disheartening remark about yourself is destructive not only to yourself, but it will make the person you are saying these things around question their own self worth or body image by comparing themselves to you.

My little sister thinks she's "fat." She doesn't like how she looks. To use her own words, she thinks she's "too chubby" and that she "looks bad in everything."

She's 12 years old.

Do you want to know why she has this mindset? As her older sister, I failed in leading her by example. There were plenty of times when I was slightly younger, less sure of myself, and far more self-conscious than I am now, that I would look in the mirror and say that I looked too chubby, that my body didn't look good enough, that I wished I could change the size of my legs or stomach.

My little sister had to see the older sibling she looks up to, the big sis she thinks always looks beautiful, say awful and untrue things about herself because her own sense of body image was warped by media, puberty, and comparing herself to others.

My negativity rubbed off onto her and shaped how she looks at herself. I can just imagine her watching me fret over how I look thinking, "If she thinks she's too big, what does that make me?"

It makes me feel sick.

All of us are dealing with our own insecurities. It takes some of us longer than others to view ourselves in a positive, loving light. We're all working on ourselves every day, whether it be mentally, physically, or emotionally. But our own baggage shouldn't be shoved on to those we surround ourselves with, our struggles and insecurities should not form into their own burdens.

Work on yourself in private. Speak kindly of yourself in front of others. Let your positivity, real or not, spread to others instead of the bad feelings we have a bad habit of letting loose.

The little girls of the world don't need your or my negative self-image this summer. Another kid doesn't need to feel worthless because we couldn't be a little more loving to ourselves and a lot more conscious of what we say out loud.

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Already Missing University Life? Try One Of These 17 Ways To Escape Any Case Of Summer Boredom

And if none of these work, sleeping is always an option.

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I don't know about you, but it's one month into summer and I'm already feeling kind of stagnant. I don't necessarily miss classes and homework, but I kind of miss the freedom of living on/near a college campus and being just a five-minute walk away from friends at any given moment.

If you're starting to feel that summer boredom—or if you're just looking for new ways to capitalize on summer free time—look no further. Here are a few ways to make the most of the summer months.

1. Find a new recipe and master it.

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You can make a personal dessert or dinner for the whole family—it's really up to you. I recommend finding a good smoothie recipe so you can kill two birds with one stone; you're escaping summer boredom and summer heat.

2. Use an online generator to randomly select a new Netflix show to binge.

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Even if it doesn't look like your kind of thing, you may be surprised. New summer, new obsession, amirite?

3. Shoot your shot with a potential summer fling.

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Keep seeing a cutie around town? Maybe you should make a move. There's never a dull moment with the right person.

4. Experiment with some new hairstyles/makeup looks.

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A fun new 'do is sure to help you feel less bored. If nothing else, you can send dramatic, glamorous selfies to your friends to pass the time.

5. Do some summer cleaning.

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If you're miserably bored, you could always start tidying up—maybe even pack up some old childhood things you've been meaning to donate/sell/throw away for a while now. Better yet, why don't you finally unpack your clothes from the school year?

6. Download a new game on your phone.

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This sounds juvenile, but come on. No one has time for games when class is in session, but you might as well enjoy the nostalgia of redownloading Candy Crush now that you're free again.

7. Explore your hometown.

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Don't normally hang out at the park or the local library? Maybe you've been missing out. Worst case scenario, you now have an opportunity to people-watch, which is always interesting.

8. Get a job, you lazy bum.

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Although I guess your summer job might be the primary source of your boredom, huh?

9. Try some form of journaling.

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I did a bullet journal planner for the entire 2018-2019 school year over the preceding summer, and it really kept me busy. You could also try a dream journal or just a thoughts journal—it could be refreshingly introspective to mull over your thoughts and experiences at the end of every day.

10. Do a thorough internship/career search.

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It might not be a very relaxing pastime, but it's definitely a productive one. If you have the mental capacity this summer, you might as well put some effort into planning for the years to come. Future you will be grateful.

11. Aimlessly walk around Target/Wal-Mart/Costco/etc.

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People-watch or take advantage of summer sales. Or literally just look at stuff. IKEA is a great option, too.

12. Spend hours watching videos on TikTok.

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Look, if you follow the right accounts it's literally just Vine 2.0. Do you really have anything better to do?

13. Video chat with school friends.

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Or at least shoot them a text. Maybe they're bored, too.

14. Clean out your closet.

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Whether you sell your clothes or donate them, at least you'll have a refreshed wardrobe. It might be time for you to let go of that shirt you've had since 7th grade, pal.

15. Try your hand at a new creative pursuit.

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Digital art, painting, poetry, novel-writing, songwriting, photography, dancing, singing, playing the clarinet—there are literally so many new things you could try in your free time. Who knows, you may have a hidden talent.

16. Spend some more time outside.

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Some people already do spend tons of time outdoors, but I've been wasting away in my bedroom for about a month now. You could go to the pool or even simply walk around your front yard to get some fresh air—just wear sunscreen either way because that summer sun is brutal. Also, if you can't afford a week-long beach getaway, maybe you could carpool with some friends for a day trip to the coast?

17. Read a new book (or, even better, a whole series).

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College ruins the fun of reading for a lot of students (if high school hadn't done that already), but don't let it destroy your own enjoyment. You could tackle anything from a fun beach read (I'd recommend "Crazy Rich Asians"; the whole series is fantastic) to some high fantasy (I'm reading "Lord of the Rings" myself) to a romance novel (I can't name any, but I'm sure there are really good ones).

Whatever you decide to do, try to make the most of this summer. Soon most of us will be year-round workers with no free time and no souls. Not yet, though!

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