The Ultimate Beachcomber’s Journal

Are you a beachcomber?

Do you like to keep track of things, like …

  • the shells  you found on a certain day
  • who you spent the day beachcombing with
  • the other cool things you found on the beach, like a sea bean or a toy
  • your favorite beaches and favorite beaches to comb
  • your bucket list of beaches you want to visit

The Ultimate Beachcomber’s Journal is a fantastic new journal created by me, Eileen Saunders aka the Crafty Beachcomber, just for you.  2-the-ultimate-beachcombers-journal-cover-1

This journal is a 6″x9″ paperback. It fits easily into …

  • your beach bag
  • a zip-top plastic bag to keep it dry and sand free at the beach
  • a standard tablet cover for safe keeping

This comprehensive journal has dedicated space for …

  • beachcombing diary
  • sketch pages
  • a coloring page
  • an info section on things that can wash up on the beach
  • a place to log in your non-shell finds
  • sea glass log
  • sea pottery log
  • a shell life list consisting of common N. American sea shells from coast to coast
  • a beach life list and a beach bucket list, and
  • there’s a section to record what you do with your booty

If you can find a better Beachcomber’s Journal, buy it. If not, buy this one.

The Ultimate Beachcomber’s Journal makes a great gift for your beach-loving friends who love to keep track of their stuff.

Now, if you are like me, you take photos of what you find and send the pictures to friends, family or your online social media of choice.  What I think would really round out this Ultimate Beachcomber’s Journal is to make a photo book each year to compliment your dairy.  While I do not have a coupon offer for any of these photo books here today, follow me on Facebook at the CraftyBeachcomber for some special money-saving coupons to make your own photo book.

With Christmas and Hanukkah just around the corner, head over to Amazon right now to order your copy of my new book: The Ultimate Beachcomber’s Journal. Thanks!

Turtle Nesting on Singer Island

I awoke a few days ago to find that turtles had visited the beach on Singer Island FL to lay some eggs.  These areas had already been posted by turtle volunteers by the time I saw them.  This spotting was just too cool for words.

Tracks going up the dunes.  These were posted/staked in two different areas: one at the top of the track on the dune, there is another post midway.  A third post was there a few days prior.  The diagonal tracks crossing the wider path was from someones pet. What an awesome sight.

Tracks going up the dunes. These were posted/staked in two different areas: one at the top of the track on the dune, there is another post midway. A third post was there a few days prior. The diagonal tracks crossing the wider path was from someones pet. What an awesome sight.

Turtle tracks to nesting area on the dune, left of center.  The dark spot in the center of the beach that looks like 3 triangles together, is a nest that was posted/staked the previous day.  There is another directly straight to the water from the dark spot.

Turtle tracks to nesting area on the dune, left of center. The dark spot in the center of the beach that looks like 3 triangles together, is a nest that was posted/staked the previous day. There is another directly straight to the water from the dark spot.

Azaleas in Bloom

It’s approaching four years that I’ve been living in Fairhope across the Bay from Azalea City…Mobile, AL. I’ve heard from time to time that I should see the azaleas in bloom at the Botanic Gardens so this year I went.

The website claimed “peak” for the azaleas and other flowering plants so the boys and I took the day off from school and went over for a visit. The sky was clear, the air was crisp and in the 60s. Quite a pleasant day.

There is a major plant sale event this weekend and we saw the operation setting up but scooted past in search of the “peak” azaleas.
Although there were plenty of flowers, I was wondering if we had been a bit early for some varieties or a bit late. The first group of azaleas had a ton of buds on them. Passing those, we spotted a large walkway lined with blooms, followed by plants that were obviously past peak with dried out, brown flowers stuck to the leaves. I guess we missed peak.

But there’s a silver lining…I got to see the azaleas at the Mobile Botanic Garden.

The boys and I walked throughout the whole garden, visiting the camellias and the fern garden as well. We spotted birds, and bees. We saw two metal sculptures and had a great time discussing the environment around us. We had a good time.

bug sculpture 1

bug sculpture 1

Bug sculpture 2

Bug sculpture 2

Camellia

Camellia

Fern Garden

Fern Garden

After we left the grounds I spotted white pelicans in the lake across the street. They were in a feeding frenzy in the center of the lake. Poor fish!

Insect art sculpture at the art museum near the Botanic Gardens

Insect art sculpture at the art museum near the Botanic Gardens

I’m glad I got to the Botanic Gardens but have to note that I saw more blooms and brilliant colors and variety in my neighborhood and the ones we drove through in Mobile, on our way home. This area loves its flowering plants and right now the azaleas are in bloom.

Coastal Ideas on Pinterest

I live along the  Gulf Coast and love all things coastal.  So I’ve been collecting things on my Pinterest page that are Coastal Inspirations.

Some people pin an enormous amount of items and I wonder if they’re really pinning for themselves or just randomly what they like that day.  I prefer to pin what I like and what represents what I’d realistically like to have, make, do or visit.  So, my pin board is not a large collection; only about 100 pins but it reflects what inspires me.

I also love Starfish so I have a separate board for everything Sea StarHope it inspires you.

Red Tide in South Florida

Red Tide has affected the beaches from Manatee to Collier Counties in SW Florida since December. Highest concentrations this month are in Sarasota and Lee Counties.

According to myfwc.com, Red Tide is “a higher-than-normal concentration of a microscopic alga (plant-like organism).”  Karenia brevis  It can occur anywhere around the Gulf of Mexico; other algae species can cause red tide in other parts of the world. Red tide can be reddish, green, purple or brown.

This organism produces a toxin that kills marine animals so you’ll see potentially large fill kills washing up on the beach.  Shellfish (oysters and clams) can become infected and pass the toxins onto humans that consume them.   Scientists monitor the ocean for this algae to provide shellfish warnings. Red tide also causes respiratory irritation; most people are affected because the toxin becomes air born on wind currents after a wave crash scatters an algae bloom.

Be careful if you have respiratory issues and you’re visiting or residing in the affected areas.  I didn’t encounter a red tide bloom when I lived in Sarasota.  One had occurred before I moved there; now this one.  I have heard stories from my friends who have allergies and asthma.  Most people have watery eyes, nasal issues, and coughing.  Red tide can come and go quickly or last a long while.  I’m praying for my friends that it goes quickly.

I’d love to hear from you about how it’s going there.  Please write.

Coastal Cemetaries

I read an article this morning about Louisiana coastal cemetaries and how they are becoming water logged due to erosion from the Gulf and surrounding wetlands. Some are under water; some are a barren wasteland of what it used to be due to salt water encroachment during storms. You can read it here.

Cemetaries are supposed to last forever.  They’re a place to lay to rest our relatives and place where we can feel their presence when we visit.  I view cemetaries as historical landmarks.  I’ve enjoyed visiting old ones, searching for clues as to the history of the area, taking rubbings from headstones, searched for the oldest headstone, the youngest person buried there, the largest family plot, etc.  You can find, by dates of the majority of the buried, what they may have died from: civil war injuries and deaths, yellow fever, and other maladies that swept through areas at specific times that historians have recorded. 

My husband and I (with the kids tagging along) have taken road trips to visit historic cemetaries or the pay homage to famous southern baseball players, musicians or other historical figures (since we live in the South). 

My family is buried in Baltimore, MD, on a hillside far from water.  I don’t know how I’d feel about their cemetary being washed away like the ones on the Louisiana coast.  Sad, perhaps.  I don’t know that I’d do anything to move the deceased but I’d have to be put in that situation to really find my feelings. Nothing in the article I’ve referenced says the families are moving their relatives. 

Life comes and goes, as do the waves of the Gulf or the many oceans.  The dead will remain at rest where ever they’re placed. Maybe they should just be left alone. 

What do you think?