Crowded car parks?
Not for me!
Posted by Jody on December 6, 2013
Crowded car parks?
Not for me!
Posted by Jody on November 11, 2013
Posted by Jody on October 29, 2013
“A cloud does not know why it moves in just such a direction and at such a speed…
It feels an impulsion… this is the place to go now. But the sky knows the reasons and the patterns behind all clouds,
and you will know, too, when you lift yourself high enough to see beyond horizons.”
This week’s WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge theme is “Horizon.”
Posted by Jody on October 20, 2013
“But friendship is precious, not only in the shade, but in the sunshine of life,
and thanks to a benevolent arrangement the greater part of life is sunshine.”
Posted by Jody on September 20, 2013
Many years ago, on our fourth trip to Sanibel Island, Florida, Greg and I stayed in a wonderful beachside condo. The owners of the unit had quite thoughtfully placed a copy of The Sanibel Shell Guide on the living room coffee table. After thumbing through the first few pages, we were hooked!
The Sanibel Shell Guide is written in easy-breezy style, and it’s geared towards the amateur beach treasure seeker. This little gem is loaded with information that we hobbyists can actually understand and use. The author, Margaret H. Greenberg, tells us from the start:
“This book was written by an amateur sheller for other amateur shellers who would like to know something about the specimens they find on Sanibel and Captiva.”
In short: It’s a handy little (117 page) shell guide, written by a beachcomber, about beachcombing, for fellow beachcombers. You can’t get any better than that! “Over 100 shells (and other specimens ) have been identified with the aid of photographs, sketches, and descriptions free of Latin words and technical jargon.”
The Sanibel Shell Guide was originally published in 1982, so some of the information is outdated. You’ll be paying for beach parking these days, and live specimen collecting is now strictly taboo, with good reason. In the chapter “Equipment and Attire,” the author explains: “A sunscreen (as opposed to tanning lotions and oils) is also recommended.” Can you even buy tanning oil anymore? Nevertheless, this chapter has some very practical tips for a safe, comfortable, productive day of beach treasure hunting on Sanibel Island and Captiva (or anywhere else for that matter).
There are tips for where and when to shell on the islands, photos and descriptions to help you identify your beach treasures, and even some simple shell crafting ideas towards the back of the book.
When I was hunting for my copy, The Sanibel Shell Guide was already out of print. I found a used copy, in excellent condition, on my favorite used book site: AbeBooks.com. Even with shipping and handling, it was less than the original cover price of $5.95.
Shells identified using The Sanibel Shell Guide: (Photo, top to bottom) Fighting Conch, Cat’s Eye (I’ve also seen this seashell identified as a Shark Eye), Banded Tulip, Lightning Whelk.
Do you have a favorite seashell guide? Is it specific to your favorite beach? Inquiring minds want to know!
Happy beach treasure hunting!
Posted in Beach Treasures - Beachcombing, Beaches of North America, Gulf of Mexico Beaches, Seashells | Tagged: beach, beachcombing, collecting seashells Sanibel Island Florida, Sanibel Island Florida beachcombing, Sanibel Stoop, The Sanibel Shell Guide | 6 Comments »
Posted by Jody on September 16, 2013
Posted in Beach Treasures - Beachcombing, Gulf of Mexico Beaches, Monday Miscellaneous, Sand and Shoreline, Today's Special | Tagged: beach, beachcombing, beachcombing on Texas Gulf Coast, seashells, Texas Gulf Coast beach | 11 Comments »
Posted by Jody on June 21, 2013
“It is a happy talent to know how to play.”
~Ralph Waldo Emerson
This week’s WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge topic is “The World Through Your Eyes.”
Posted in Gulf of Mexico Beaches, Today's Special | Tagged: beach, beach photography, postaday, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Summer, Texas Gulf Coast beach, The World Through Your Eyes, Weekly Photo Challenge | 17 Comments »
Posted by Jody on June 10, 2013
Take my hand.
We will walk.
We will only walk.
We will enjoy our walk
without thinking of arriving anywhere.
~ Thich Nhat Hanh, Walking Meditation
Posted by Jody on April 29, 2013
My family and I recently enjoyed another lovely day trip to Quintana Beach County Park, one of our absolute favorite Texas coastal recreation areas. This 51-acre natural beachfront playground is the ultimate dog-friendly family choice in the Lone Star State. Located in Freeport, Texas, on the Gulf of Mexico, it’s a wonderfully scenic and a relatively quick (1 ½ hour) drive south of Houston. Quintana Beach County Park is a much more laid back alternative to the city and beaches of Galveston, which have all of the hustle and bustle you would expect from a typical seaside tourist mecca.
You can feel free to bring Spot along for your day at the beach. At Quintana Beach County Park our tail-wagging companions are welcome.
“Pet Safety on the Beach” as posted at Quintana Beach County Park:
~All very good safety tips~ Please remember that pets need to be restrained (at this beach) at all times and, of course, picking up after Spot is a must!
A while back we published a post on the many reasons to visit this lovely beach park: Quintana Beach County Park on the Texas Gulf Coast – So Many Reasons to Visit. The list includes camp sites (tents, RVs, and vacation cabins), picnic tables, modern restrooms and showers, kayaking, surfing, beachcombing, fishing… and the list goes on. Being dog-friendly simply adds one more great reason for families to plan the perfect fun-filled trip to Quintana Beach County Park!
Do you have a favorite dog-friendly beach? Please share it with us. We’d love to know!
Here are a few more helpful links:
Have a great day at the beach!
Posted in Beach Safety Tips, Gulf of Mexico Beaches, Monday Miscellaneous | Tagged: beach, dog beach etiquette, dog friendly beach, Quintana Beach County Park, sun safety, Texas Gulf Coast beach | 6 Comments »
Posted by Jody on April 9, 2013
Surfside Jetty County Park is the perfect day-trip destination on the Texas Gulf Coast! Two of my top reasons for heading to this particular family friendly beach park are 1) the ample paved parking available right up close to the beach and 2) the well maintained permanent restrooms (both are very hard to come by on this part of the upper Texas Gulf Coast). The park offers so much more, though: a grassy lawn for flying kites and a play area for the kids to romp, covered picnic tables, a sandy beach, and a .6 mile long jetty jutting out into the Gulf of Mexico that’s just right for a leisurely stroll.
The Surfside Jetty was packed with folks fishing from its protective riprap on the sunny spring day we visited, but there was always room for us to pass.
The adjacent sandy beach is a wonderful place to beachcomb for seashells. According to the Village of Surfside Beach website, “600 known shell species found among our 27 miles of sandy beaches of Brazoria County.”
It’s also the perfect place for children of all ages to build sand castles, watch the surfers, and swim or splash in the water. *Note: No lifeguards are stationed at Surfside’s beaches.*
Lots of families came much better prepared than we were – with camping tents, shade shelters, furnishings of all sorts, well-stocked coolers, and enough packaged food to stock a couple of small convenience stores… I do believe I’ve heard these super organized, ultra-ready people referred to as “beach contractors.” Next time, and there will definitely be a next time, we’ll come better outfitted (with own big top and plenty of provisions) to sit back, relax, and spend the whole day having fun on the sand and shore.
Here’s a peek at some of the beach treasures we found at Surfside Jetty County Park beach!
~Oysters, Scallops, Cockles, and Ark Shells!
Have a great day at the beach!
Posted in Beach Treasures - Beachcombing, Gulf of Mexico Beaches, Seashells | Tagged: beach, Brazoria County Texas beach, Surfside Beach Texas, Surfside Jetty County Park, Texas Gulf Coast beach | 16 Comments »