Forgotten Beach Needs-things to pack in your beach bag.
Now that I live near a beach, it's great to go. However, I had to re-think my beach bag when I packed it again. I don't have children, but I still have needs. I work in a children's store and I see kids coming in all the time with beach and sun needs that are not being met.
Common Items all beach goers should have: towels, sunscreen, water, food or drinks of some sort, chairs or something to sit or lay on. Beach tents are good but optional. Toys for the kids again depending on your situation are good so I would add cup/bucket/strainer, and shovel.
Beach items that are not taken but really help when needed are the following.
Hats, especially for children. They may not wear them at first but when they are hot, they might re-consider.Sunglasses as well. We tell parents face them into the sun and then put those sunglasses on. Their eyes usually convince them they need this. Sunscreen in the eyes burns and gets rubbed out leaving painfully red, swollen eyes after day on the beach. Flip flops also,are much cooler than plastic clogs and help when feet are burning on hot sand, or covered in sand and don't want to go back into shoes.
Meat tenderizer. Yes, if you've ever gotten a jelly fish sting; rubbing this into the sting area really does help. It not for a man of war type of jelly fish, but the pesky jelly fish that show up, or leave broken up bits in the water after the waves break them apart.
Baby powder cornstarch. Sprinkle a little bit on hands or feet to instantly remove sand and make skin feel more comfortable. Children who want to eat can enjoy sandwiches without sand in them. Feet and legs feel better without sand all over the beach sheet.
A small spray bottle of water. This is good to cool down instantly, spray off hands or feet too.
A small bottle of bug spray. Occasionally those pesky flies or bugs do show up at the beach and instead of swatting like mad, simply spray yourself and continue on.
A small tube of zinc oxide or sunblock 30-50. If you end up staying at the beach longer than you anticipated, someone doesn't want to leave, your ride is late, you stay to watch dolphins, whatever, it can happen. It's nice to have something stronger to put on to protect those lips and noses in particular; or if a spot is missed with sunscreen and is burning. (A side note here, I always put my sunscreen on completely before I leave the house. There is no messy sand or grit on my fingers, and I don't miss any areas since I can use a mirror. I do it undressed then put on my swimsuit. It soaks into my skin before I get to the beach and has a better chance to protect. Plus others do not want to stop and rub lotion thoroughly on you once at the beach. I can always add more sunscreen later, but I choose the sunblocking level to adjust to how much sun I want, the tan I already have or don't, and how much more sun I want to get). Add a couple of bandaids here in the baggie too.
A small bottle of aloe vera. If I do get sunburned earlier than expected, putting some cooling aloe vera on if others aren't ready to leave will defintely help.
A long sleeved cover-up or larger towel to wrap up in if the wind picks up and one gets cold. My kids were different and unique individuals and one could be cold and the other hot at the same time.
Depending on the beach you go to, a small rack or shovel to rake away seaweed, broken shells,and human trash-(pistachio nut shells is what we found this morning). It can also just soften up hard packed sand before you lay on it.
A small wipe cloth for sunglasses,or regular glasses is also handy if this is needed. And I've even taken a baggie and filled it with a really wet washcloth to wipe eyes, ears faces if needed. Extra water helps here as well.
All of the above items are actually not that large but can make a huge difference if needed at the beach, and most will keep in your bag all summer and won't need to be changed out until they are used up or summer is over.