Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Shells, Shells and More Shells

Actually, pickin's have been slim this year. We usually find a grocery bag full of nice shells, but not this year. Here are some of the treasure we did find. I'll have more shells photo's tomorrow.
Usually, we find some larger ones, but this year, they are fairly small, but a lot are perfect.

Monday, December 27, 2010


It's windy and cold, yes, darn right cold here in FL this morning. This is our last week here before we head home on the weekend. The weather looks good for traveling by then. I caught these pic's this morning of an osprey. He was across the street from our balcony enjoying his breakfast.
We have a pair of osprey that nest close to the house in the summer. I couldn't help wonder if this was one our osprey and if he was thinking the same thing we are - damn, it's warmer in the Poconos!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

St John's Pass

It really isn't too cold here today, but the wind really makes it feel colder.
Another favorite stop while we're here is St John's Pass

Our favorite store here is The Spice and Tea Exchange

And here is a shot of the outside of the shop and the owner Vic inside.
The shop has a great selection of loose teas, a large variety of sea salts. I love the
different flavors, and oh, just all kinds of spices and cooking herbs. The shop smells divine.
They also sell salt and pepper mills, special 'house blends' of various meat rubs, even large
chunks of salts and microplanes to shave it.
And Vic is very personable, he makes everyone feel welcome.

My haul today
Almond Cookie Tea-cinnamon and almond mixed with black tea
Mystic Dragon Tea - a blend of Sencha and Dragonwell
Vanilla Bean Sugar
Hawaiian Red Sea Salt -
LaBaleine French Sea Salt - a freebie!
Pinot Noir Sea Salt
Olive Sea Salt
Florida Sunshine - A sea salt, lemon, pepper blend.
White Muntok Peppercorns
Black Tellicherry Peppercornds
Ancho Pepper Powder
Matanzas Chili Blend

lol - You should have seen the look on his face when I asked for Chili Powder. He said which kind. I said "I want the one you've been shipping to Suzie!" lol - yep, my crazy lady rep is in tact!

St John's Pass is a must see area if you are in the area. Plenty of shops and restaurants. Casino cruises, fishing charters, and we even spotted 4 dolphins in the water this morning.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The Teapots are Multiplying!

Again! Here's a cute miniature set I found in a store done in St Pete's Beach. The little Snowman Set. The biggest piece, the teapot is 2" high and the plate is about 4" wide. Cute.

And then, the white one is a full size pot, decorated with silver (it's more than likely white gold) overlay. It's either bone china or porcelain. The light passes through it. A great find at the flea market this morning.

And the cats in the chair teapot is a just for fun one. The floor lamp is the handle. And the vase on the table is the spout. This teapot is also full size, about 7" handle to spout.

Gary keeps saying he doesn't know how we're going to fit all this in the car for the trip home, but he keeps pointing them out to me - lol

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Hearts on the Beach - Another Walk

Yesterday, we found the beach just full of Pen Shells. I mean THOUSANDS of them! As far as we could see up and down the beach and tumbling in the surf.
Then have a rather rough exterior that looks like feather quills and the insides can be very
iridescent, like a deep blue to purple mother of pearl finish.
We found two that were actually opened flat in the shape of hearts. I don't know how they
survived the tumbling surf. Especially the one with
barnacles inside. That one must have been open for quite some time.

Monday, December 20, 2010

A White Christmas Tree

I think it was Joni at the Hive that posted some pictures of tree ornaments made with glittered sea shells. I knew I needed a white tree then. I want to do it in all pink glittered shells. I've been looking for a small white tree since her post. I've seen green, blue, silver, and even black trees since then. Yesterday, my sister and I went to a Christmas shop in St Pete's Beach. No white tree there either. But in an antique shop around the corner, I found my little white tree. Perfect!
This will be my Florida tree next year. I already have lots of shells that I can glitter. Now, I just need some lights. And I'm thinking pink pearls for garland.

Holiday Boat Parade

There's been 3 Holiday Boat Parades in the area this week. They have a contest for the best boat in the parades with cash prizes. It was pretty chilly last night, but there was a good turn out for the parade. I wish the light showed up brighter in the photos, the displays were so pretty. A few boats were going to fast, the photos were a blur of lights. I found the slower they were traveling, the better the photos were.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Flea Market and Gemstone Finds

Today was a busy day. Off to the Wagon Wheel Flea Market this morning. We covered quite a bit of the market. I've been wanting to find some gemstone pieces and we hit the jackpot. The large geode in the center is for us. A couple of the smaller geodes, I try a little wire wrapping with to make a pendant or two. And a few of these stones will be for an upcoming blog giveaway.
I found Tiger Eye, Red Tiger Eye, Rose Quartz along with the geodes. Hubby bought some rough stones to try out the rock tumbler.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Great Blue Heron

It rained today, but I got a short walk in on the beach. Caught this guy fishing today.

So we have a whole story here from his wading into the surf to actually catching a nice
size fish in the surf. He did get a bit wet. There is nothing wrong with him, just his
feathers are soaked to the skin. I know Blogger won't publish the photos in the order
I want, so I've labeled the shots to tell the story.

Local Bead Store - Sparkle Spot
Sparkle Spot Bead Shop
7901 46th Ave N
St. Petersburg, FL 33709


Tue-Sat: 11am-7pm
Sun: By Appointment
Mon: closed

The Sparkle Spot is a small boutique that shares a store space with a book store. It's jammed packed with great beads. There are lots of finished pieces on display for inspiration and the owner was just a doll. Heck, she 's just about as enthusiastic about beading as me - lol - yep, she's got it bad. Out of the 3 shops that I have visited here so far, she has been the most friendly. We had a great time chatting. She showed me some of here pieces with different designs and some using a fairly new bead from Miyuki, the long magatama. It's like the fringe drop bead but a bit longer and pointier. They looked awesome done up in a Russian spiral, and embellishing a simple herringbone bracelet. Projects to follow. Pictures of the magatama beads below and my booty. I'll definitely make another trip back to the shop before we leave.

Breaking news - Kelly has just joined the Hive so I hope she'll share some photos of her work!

A Few Glass Beads

Yesterday, we drove up to Port Richie, to a flea market. Fleamarket USA is supposed to have
600 booths, but I would say less than half were open for business yesterday. It was very disappointing.
I did find these glass beads at one booth and saw them at several other booths there also.
Have the Chinese entered the lampwork bead making scene too? The price of these beads was indecent! Only $1.50 each - I thought that was pretty cheap. And they look pretty darn nice, especially the Santa beads. They also sold the flowery focal bead packaged with two smaller beads to match, for earrings and they were only $4.00 a set.

Friday, December 17, 2010

A Little Beading

Yes, we'll interrupt this vacation tour with a little beading. But don't worry we'll be back to the beach in no time. It's a wonderful 71 degrees right now and sunny.
Here is my finished Joy ornament. You can find the pattern in a previous post. I made 3 of the triangles and zipped them together. Added a few jingle bells at the corners.
Stitched with Delica's 11/0's. Red is #602 and Green is # 605

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Walk on the Beach

The cold snap and heavy winds have left us. The tides were high and washed ashore a lot of sea grasses, sponges and larger shells. Not too many pretty ones, but I did find a few. The next high tide will take all the sea grass back out and the beaches will be clean again. Tomorrow, temps will be in the 70's and low tide will bring a whole new range of shells. We even found some large shrimp in the tide line.

Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary
This Seabird Sanctuary and Hospital is just down the block from where we are staying.
They have a variety of birds there that are injured and on the mend. After the bird regain their strength, they are released into the wild again. The injured birds are in netted cages, but you will see a lot of herons and egrets and pelicans nesting and roosting in the trees in this small sanctuary.
We see a lot of birds flying towards the sanctuary in the evening too.
Here we have a Little Blue Heron, a White Pelican, and Brown Pelicans and a Great Blue Heron, he's fine, he just stopped by looking for a handout.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Local Bead Store - Dunedin Beads

Dunedin Beads is in Dunedin, of course! 730 Broadway.
This wonderful little shop seemed to be more geared for stringing and wirework. But that's ok!
They do have some delicas, cubes, and other small beads.
They carry strands and strands of Chech glass beads and lots of gemstones. Lots of findings that you just don't see in too many places. A large selection in each of the popular finishes, silver, copper, brass, etc. They also had wire in about any color you'd want.
I thought the prices were very, very reasonable. Especially the cabochons.
Their calender is chock full of different classes too.
I'll definitely be making a second trip to this shop before we leave.
Here's my booty from this shop. The bead caps were $0.20 so I got a little bag of each. They are so delicate.

More Shore Birds

Here are some more birds on the beach. I was trying to get a photo of a heron yesterday morning.
He was on the other side of the Intercoastal, and I was on the balcony zooming in and trying to focus, when a Bald Eagle flew across my view right in front of me! I hope he's a permanent resident around here and I get another chance at a shot at him.

Today, I have photos of a Laughing Gull, so named because their call sounds like a loud laugh.
Their heads are much more slate gray in the summer. They are one of the smallest gulls.
Note the white dots along their tail feathers.

The Brown Pelican - they fly very low along the water and spot fish. Then they fold in their wings and dive. They have wingspans of 79 inches.

And the Black Crowned Night Heron is roosting in a tree here.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Local Bead Store - Celestial Beads

Celestial Beads is in Madeira Beach Fl, just off Gulf Blvd on 150th Ave, 201 150th Ave (aka Tom Stuart Cswy). A brightly light shop with 3 rooms. One for holding classes. One room is mostly delica's and seeds, and findings and some loose metal beads. The other room has strands of gemstone, pearls, glass beads. You'll also find some lamp work beads, novelty shapes, and beading magazines. It's a delightful shop to visit. I made my first visit of this vacation yesterday. I bought this geode slice. What do you see in it? I saw a whole scene.
And then here are some other beads that I bought. Nothing serious in mind for these right now except some ornaments. I will definitely make another visit before going home.