Catching Some Rays – Idiom, Origin & Meaning

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Candace Osmond

Candace Osmond studied Advanced Writing & Editing Essentials at MHC. She’s been an International and USA TODAY Bestselling Author for over a decade. And she’s worked as an Editor for several mid-sized publications. Candace has a keen eye for content editing and a high degree of expertise in Fiction.

Let’s take a sunny stroll down the idiom lane and take a look at what the phrase catch some rays really means. It’s a super common saying we use in English, but understanding the origin and proper usage of idioms like this will help you use it correctly. Let’s get to it!

Catching Rays Meaning Explained

Catching Some Rays Idiom Origin Meaning

So, what does it mean to catch some rays? It’s not about chasing after sunlight in a net, I assure you! This idiom is all about lying in the sun to get a sweet tan. It’s what you say when you’re heading to the beach with a towel, a good book and sunscreen (the latter is very important, my friends).

Different Tenses to Use

Grammar alert! Here are different tenses you can use when you plan to absorb some much-needed Vitamin D.

  • Catch (Present): Every weekend, I love to catch some rays at the local beach.
  • Catching (Present Continuous): Look at Tim, catching some rays on the balcony.
  • Caught (Past): Yesterday, we caught some rays at the park and had a nice picnic.

Origin and Etymology Behind Catching Some Rays

Catch Some Rays Ngram
Catch some rays usage trend.

The phrase catch some rays came into the spotlight (pun intended) in the mid-20th century, particularly in the United States and some states like California with a large surfing culture. It mirrors the idea of catching, or rather absorbing, the sun’s rays for that beautiful bronze tan. Just remember to catch responsibly and use sunscreen!

Catch Some Rays Synonyms

In the mood to switch things up a bit? Here are some sunny alternatives that mean the same thing.

  • Sunbathing
  • Basking in the sun
  • Soaking up the sun
  • Getting a tan
  • Bronzing
  • Tanning

Catch Some Rays Examples in a Sentence

Catching Some Rays Idiom Origin Meaning 1

Let’s put this phrase under the sunlight in different tenses! These should give you a deeper understanding of how this saying should be used in conversation or in writing.

  • Every summer, we head to the local beach to catch some rays and swim in the ocean.
  • Mary is in the backyard, catching some rays and reading her book.
  • After a super long Newfoundland winter, I can’t wait to catch some rays by the ocean.
  • “We caught some rays at the park today,” Tom told his girlfriend.
  • It’s such a lovely day; let’s go to the rooftop, catch some rays, and have a few drinks.
  • While vacationing in Hawaii, they spent their days catching some rays on the beautiful beaches.
  • She caught so many rays on her vacation that she returned home with a stunning tan.
  • I caught way too many rays this weekend, and now I’m burnt to a crisp!
  • They were catching rays at the beach when a seagull stole their snacks!

Catching the Sun?

Phew! We’ve basked in the light of catch some rays, understanding its sunny ins and outs. Just always wear sunscreen and protect your skin. Keep learning about fun idioms like this with our plethora of quick but detailed guides!