Friday, June 24, 2011

The party is over

Never be sad for what is over, just be glad that it was once yours. ~ Unknown

When we got up this morning we (I)decided to call the Shell Museum to see if someone could identify Daddy's shell.  I don't think he believed me that it was a Lion's Paw, and I knew if would really, really be rare to find one! They said come on down, so we did.  The receptionist thought it might just be a scallop, but sent us to their 'expert' and he verified what I thought!  It was a baby Lion's Paw!!  The receptionist heard him and immediately asked if she could take a picture, in fact, she took two!!  I talked Daddy into agreeing to go on down to the Island Sun to have it put in the paper, though we know it is small and difficult to see!  I added this as an update yesterday....but it bears repeating!! I took this picture as the reporter took one also! We thought adding his huge Alphabet cone was a bonus!! :)

 We left there and came right back to the condo to get the last few hours of shelling at low tide.  It wasn't really low, but we were gonna try it out anyway!  We did fairly well I think! Better than the last couple of days! (sorry for the quality of the pics, it was nearly dark and I had to get them packed up!)
These are Jimmy and my finds!

Isn't that a beautiful True Tulip Jimmy found??

These are my Dad's finds....

...he also got a True Tulip!!

 We stopped shelling this evening in time to go to Sanibel Grill for our last supper.  It was good food as usual!  We spent the rest of the evening packing up in preparation for the 2 day drive home, for the first time ever, I couldn't get all the shells in 'The Shell Bag'! (It was our first time with 6 people for 2 I guess shelling wasn't as bad as I thought!!

I hope you all enjoyed this trip as much as we did.  Hubby (Jimmy) had to work for a big part of this trip....he's ready for a real vacation now!! :0
Looks like we might have to plan another trip before our scheduled November trip back down here!! :]

I will update you all on our bird eggs in the nest at home as soon as we get there...they should be hatching soon!



The party is winding down!!

We took Jess and Brad to the airport yesterday in Ft. Myers for a noon take-off. It's always so sad to see them go, but they are always headed off to new adventures and another chapter of their life! I have the advantage of being in close contact with her and receive frequent text messages and phone calls so I can enjoy the adventures as they come!! Everyone here misses them like crazy, and it just isn't the same... even in paradise!! One of the family 'traditions' we have while here is to purchase a Florida themed puzzle and we spread it out on the coffee table in the condo and work on it all week....this time, because we stayed 2 weeks, we did 2 puzzles! Jimmy helped her start it out but Jess did the second one mostly herself, we tried to help her, but our old eyes couldn't see the tiny writing as well as she could! :\  I helped her finish it up when it got easier!

After we got back from the airport, my Dad and I went down to a large shell pile we had seen a couple of days ago and decided to dig through it since things were so slow out in the water! This is our combined 2 day finds...very slow for us!

Jess and Brad's finds their last day here!

 I stocked up on the cross-barred venus, because I use them for the ears on my mouse!

Jess found a spiny jewel box with the spine still attached!

I found another piece of Junonia....maybe I will glue them all together to make a whole one!!

I accidentally stepped on this Lace Murex! :)

 Check this out! My Dad found a baby lion's paw!! It is the rarest of all the shells here...even more so than a junonia!! I think we will have to take him down to get his picture in the paper!! He just thought it was a kitten's paw!

One last day of shelling!! Then back home tomorrow :[



Update!! It's confirmed by the shelling museum here on Sanibel....It's a baby lions paw!  There will be pictures in the paper of Daddy with the lions paw and a huge alphabet cone!!  YAY!! 

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Another Day in paradise!!

A vacation is having nothing to do and all day to do it in.  ~Robert Orben

I spent a little time going around the pond near the tennis courts to see what kind of wildlife I would run into, and was not disappointed! 

This guy was on the edge of the pond and was as surprised to see me as I was to see him, he had a small fish in his mouth, swallowed it all at once when I startled him and jumped in the pond.  He swam over to the same logs with the turtles and began to 'show off'!


There is also a poinciana tree that is beautiful and provides a lot of shade...complete with benches under it!!  It has large seed pods that look a lot like lima beans and beautiful orange flowers on the top! Very tropical looking, they look like they may be in the formosa family.

There are also several seagrape trees! Jelly made from these is really good!!

The shelling has been very slow the last couple of days, this is our finds for the last 2!  Of course Jess got another Alphabet cone, and Jimmy also got a beautiful one yesterday!!

Jimmy's alphabet cone!

 My mom is not able to go with us beachcombing because of asthma issues and cannot do without the oxygen, so we each brought her scoops of shells so she could 'join in'! These are leftover from our crab pot digging and we must have given her some good scoops...She had one board just covered with tiny beauties!! She is amazing at finding all the small shells, and her favorite is the wentletrap! Luckily there were several of those in her shells....along with a pear whelk and a baby's ear!! She said it was a lot of fun, though I know she misses going out with us!

My Mom's pear whelk!

I wanted to share some more of the beach with you, I will probably come back to these pics and movies often after I am back home and at work! We will be driving back home beginning Saturday!

I hope you enjoy!

Jess and Brad fly back home tomorrow, then they are off to PA for a family wedding and Jess then takes off to India a week from today for 7 weeks of surgery and veterinarian stuff! She has started a blog to keep us all posted about what she does here ...I guess we have become a blogging family!  I know I have enjoyed it, people I've 'met' who have similar interests! That's how I found out about geocaching, and Capt. Brian!  In fact, check out his blog (Capt. Brians observations on the water)...we're on it...we feel famous!! :)



Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Another field trip!

A large volume of adventures may be grasped within this little span of life, by him who interests his heart in everything. ~Laurence Sterne 

We scheduled a boat trip to Cayo Costa with Capt. Brian for Saturday afternoon from 4:30-8:30. I had been following Capt. Brian on his blog for a long time. A couple of my blogging buddies had gone out with him and highly recommended him so I thought I would too!  My Dad, Jess, Brad and I had a great time, Capt. Brian knew where the shells were and took us to the tip of the island...he even managed to ward off the oncoming thunderstorm so we could take advantage of all the time before the sunset on the island.  Just before the sunset, the waters calmed down and allowed us to do my favorite type of shelling, just like in tidal pools, the water was so clear and calm and you could just slowly walk along in knee deep water and see the bottom and gather your treasures!
Here's a closeup of my shell bag on the trip back in
 Capt. Brian was very easy to talk to and obviously knows his stuff about shells, and shelling, and is very interesting to listen to! He has studied numerous things about Florida and as a result is a very interesting guide!  We had a lot of fun!! I highly recommend him to you all....follow his blog, and the next time you are here, schedule a trip with him!! His contact information is right there!! We had a great time!

Jess finds

Brad's finds

Check out that Lightning Whelk Brad found!

Jess found this tiny perfect Angel Wing

...and 3 babies ears!

....and as usual, just before we left she found this small alphabet cone!  Brad said last night that every time Jess has gone shelling this trip, she has found at least 1 alphabet about that for a record?!!

My finds

I found a tiny false Angel Wing

Daddy's finds

Daddy couldn't believe the size of these Olives...they were huge!
After a nice walk shelling, the sun began to set, so we boarded the boat for the trip back to Captiva, with hopes of seeing a beautiful sunset and maybe some dolphin!

Brian snapped many pictures, and I believe he got a hint of a green flash in his photos!! What a beautiful sunset it was!!

...and we did get to see a mom and baby dolphin...Capt. Brian stopped the boat for some photos, and you could hear the air they took in as they slowly swam away...I managed to get one pretty good pic, though not very close!

 It was a beautiful end to another perfect day in Florida!  Thanks Capt. Brian!