Gulf Coast Snow

While living along the Gulf Coast I often heard towns brag about their “sugar white” beaches or their “powder white” beaches.  Never did I hear anyone brag about their “snow white” beaches.  But this week, the weather, which produced snow as far south as those “sugar white” beaches, has given towns the right brag about their fine “snow white” beaches.  I do not think it will cause an increase of tourism since these are the beaches the Snow Birds frequent this time of year to get away from the snow and cold.

Snow at Gulf State Park Alabama (c) Roger Reetz used with permission

Snow white beaches at Gulf State Park Alabama    (c) Roger Reetz used with permission

Sea shells and snow at Gulf State Park Alabama (c) Roger Reetz used with permission

Sea shells and snow at Gulf State Park Alabama     (c) Roger Reetz used with permission

So what’s going on with our crazy weather?  Why is it so cold, so far south?  Who knows and at this point who cares.  It’s happening and if you can find a silver lining, here it is: kids who never get to play in snow, never get to throw a snowball, never get to sled down their front yard or driveway finally got an opportunity and it was fun.

I’ve seen great photos from friends along the Gulf Coast and so glad their kids enjoyed the weather.  I also saw lots of photos of trampolines.  Seems they are a great place to measure ice and snow.

A friend's daughter ice sledding down Hwy 59 (c) Everyday IsHomeschool used with permission

A friend’s daughter ice sledding down Hwy 59        (c) Everyday IsHomeschool used with permission

Snow on Mobile Bay beach, Daphne AL. (c) Maria Conger used with permission

Snow on Mobile Bay beach, Daphne AL. (c) Maria Conger used with permission

Currently land-locked in Oxford, MS, we enjoyed a dusting on Tuesday that got everyone in town excited. One friend did a “Snoopy dance.” And, I enjoyed the photos of friends’ children dressed up as if they lived in a Iceland winterland playing with the flakes drifting around them.

Snow drift at at parking lot in Oxford, MS (c) Eileen Saunders

Snow drift at at parking lot in Oxford, MS (c) Eileen Saunders

My boys have been lucky to see snow although not too much of it. Their first was during a short-lived move to Ft. Worth, TX.  It snowed deep that year in December and we played in it.  We lived through a snowy dusting in Myrtle Beach, SC one year.  The snow only stuck to the cars so the boys scraped together what they could from our vehicles and made a few snowballs.  The real snow came around Valentines day for a few years in a row when we lived in Hernando, MS.  The first year this happened we drove in the snow storm to Walmart to buy some boots, gloves and hats so the boys could play in the snow.  We had snow again the following year and after we moved, our friends enjoyed yet another Valentines snow. Since we’re currently living in the area, we’re anticipating it again this Valentines day, although I am NOT wishing for it.

It wasn’t until 4 years ago that the boys saw some more snow and that was along the Gulf Coast. Northern parts of Mobile and Baldwin Counties, in Alabama, got snow while the southern parts got ice and rain. We had snow showers … 2 days before Valentines day.

So what do kids in the south do when it snows?  They make snowmen, snowballs, shovel driveways and sled.  And, they go to the beach to see what a snow-white beach looks like.

Roger Reetz photography can be found on Gulf State Park Alabama facebook page.

The Crafty Beachcomber

I’m combining forces with this blog and my new Facebook page, “Crafty Beachcomber“.

For the past few years you’ve been reading of my adventures along the Gulf Coast and other beachy places I’ve visited and lived. I have written about hurricanes, salt water fish tanks, “Beggar” the Dolphin from Sarasota, sea glass hunting in Hawaii, giant Lego washing ashore on Siesta Key and more.  Now I want you to enjoy the projects I’m constructing with my beach finds. I will post them through this blog as well as keep up the usual coastal stories. Hopefully you’ll learn how to make a few things with your beach finds or maybe you can send me a note to share with my readers about what you make.

crafty beachcomber banner2

If you aren’t already a subscriber to this blog, please sign up to follow it.  Find Crafty Beachcomber on Facebook and LIKE the page.  I also have an Etsy store, The Crafty Beachcomber, that I hope you visit.

Thanks for joining me and I look forward to entertaining you with my coastal addiction.

10 Things That Have Shells

As a beach comber I love to search beaches for fun finds. Most of what I find are shells: shells from gastropods, bi-valves, and mollusks. Crabs have shells (exoskeleton) they shed in order to grow a new, larger one. Sand dollars and sea urchins leave behind their test (endoskeleton).

shells (c) eileensaundersShell is both a noun and a verb. As a noun it is a protective cover, coating or housing. It could be the hull of a boat, the water-proof coating on a jacket or part of an atom, for example. As a verb it means the act of finding shells on the beach, removing shells from food or bombarding something. With Mardi Gras season approaching I can’t resist this example: “The parade goers were shelled with doubloons and moon pies.”

As I am currently sitting land-locked this bitter cold winter thinking of shells and looking forward to the warm weather, I started thinking of other things that have shells. Here’s what I came up with:

1. Turtle
2. Armadillo
3. Ammunition
4. Eggs
5. Candy (like M&Ms)
6. Nuts
7. Peas have pods but when we remove them, we call them shells
8. Coconuts
9. A really shy person
10. A chrysalis

Can you come up with more?