Category Archives: Home and Family

Tropical and beach themed home decor and ideas for the coastal lifestyle.

Dropping a Line

Cat on my home office desk
Blogging / Home Office

Just a quick post to update the blog, which I have been ignoring lately.  Selling a home takes a lot of planning and a lot of work.  I don’t have to tell those of you who have done so!  But that is what I’ve been up do over the past months.

It looks like a done deal, so I am busy packing and trashing unneeded items.  There is nothing like a move from one house to another to clear out the junk that’s been lingering in cabinets and dresser drawers.

Also I am moving back to the south, so a wardrobe adjustment is needed.  It looks like the chance of snow has passed us up here in New Hampshire, so it’s time to donate the winter coats, mittens, hats, etc.  My daughter will get my Bean boots, and she can’t wait for me to hand them over!

Soon I will literally be dropping a line – into the ICW, hoping for a nice redfish to bite.

It’s a big change, but I know what I am in for. Also I will have a lot more hands-on photos and experiences to share on this blog. It’s one thing to write about collecting seashells, when my shells were collected years ago, compared to writing a post about being on the beach and sharing my finds.

Between work, showing my house (which thankfully sold quickly), and planning the move, I’ve been too busy to write at any of my blogs. Once I get to the south I will seriously consider dropping some of them and concentrating on only the best (this one is number one).

I love to be out on the water, but I also love gardening, so I will keep my gardening blog and will add to that whenever I have time.

Please stay tuned to share my new adventures in my old home – the state of Florida, where I hope to add to my seashell collection.

seashells from florida
Seashells from Florida
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Salt Water in Your Backyard Swimming Pool

Screen Shot 2016-02-08 at 9.26.30 AM
Salt Water is Easy on the Eyes

The only way to live well in the sweltering Florida climate is to have cool water to jump into close by.  For most, that means a backyard swimming pool.  These days, many homeowners choose to have a salt-water pool.  If this doesn’t sound appealing, then read on.  I’m about to change your mind.

First, if you have a normal pool with fresh water, you will know that it must be maintained with chlorine.  There are various ways to add chlorine to the water, but if you don’t maintain the pH of the water, it will turn green.  Swimming in it will be unhealthy.  Too much chlorine and it will smell, and getting water in your eyes will sting.

When I lived in Florida we had a typical in-ground pool and we bought big chlorine tablets to add to the water filter.  We tested the water to check the safety and often had a lot of trouble clearing up the green, which happened often after it rained.  Anyone who has such a pool, will be familiar with having to “shock” it occasionally.  Chemicals are added to bring the pH back to normal.

I had already left Florida to live in the northeast by the time salt-water pools were becoming popular.  Since then I have gone back to Florida to visit and had the opportunity to swim in a salt-water pool.  It was lovely.   Continue reading Salt Water in Your Backyard Swimming Pool

The Florida Dream Home Giveaway I Plan to Win

Banana River Merritt Island
This is not a photo of the Dream House, but shows Merritt Island from the Banana River.

(Photo credit: “Merritt Island, Florida (southern tip)” by Leonard J. DeFrancisciOwn work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.)

Have you heard about the HGTV Dream House giveaway?  Well, I am entering the contest over and over because it would be perfect for me.

The house itself is not really my taste, but it’s location is worth everything.  And the winner gets a boat and a lovely dock with pretty lights along the boardwalk.  I would live in a tent to be on that piece of land!

The Dream House is located on Merritt Island, near the Canaveral seashore / space center (Florida’s east coast).  It is on the Intracoastal Waterway / Banana River, which is exactly where I’d love to live.  Our new fishing business needs such a location, but living on the water is a dream that is out of reach for us.  That is why winning this house giveaway is a must! Continue reading The Florida Dream Home Giveaway I Plan to Win

Venice Beach is the Place to Find Shark’s Teeth

sharks teeth mouth skeletonThe shoreline at Venice Beach, on the Gulf coast of Florida, is known as the best place to find shark’s teeth.  I have never visited this beach, which is located about halfway along the west coast, but my kids would have loved to collect sharks teeth there.

Just like beachcombing for good seashells, you will find more sharks teeth after a storm comes through.  The teeth are fossilized remnants of the large creatures that died some time ago.  Eventually the teeth make their way to shore, usually in rough water.  As sharks are abundant in the warm Gulf of Mexico, so are their teeth.  And we all know that sharks can have many rows of teeth, losing them over a lifetime.  This also adds to the large number of teeth deposited on the ocean floor.

Now here is something interesting that I came across.  You can also hunt for shark’s teeth in freshwater rivers in Florida!  I’m going to give you a link to a page that will tell you why, but briefly it is because all of Florida used to be under the ocean.  There are safety factors involved when you do anything in fresh water, one of them being cottonmouth snakes and the other is, of course, alligators.  Florida fresh water areas are not inviting – not to me anyway.  Florida is full of creepy, and deadly, wildlife, but the bodies of fresh water are the worst!  Read more about this challenging way to Hunt for Shark’s Teeth in Rivers (Shark Teeth Store website).  The article link is to a site which also sells shark teeth, in case you are interested in buying.

Personally, I would stick to the beach to find my shark’s teeth, but the more adventurous could find some nice specimens in and around rivers.  Diving and snorkeling could yield some terrific artifacts.  And while you’re looking for teeth, keep your eyes peeled for other fossils.  Because of the nature of the beach, with it’s tides and storms, each day contains the possibility of finding something new.  Once you have that special tooth, wrap it in wire and hang it around your neck proudly.

(Photo credit: PubicDomainPictures @ Pixabay)

Stop by Bealls and Pick Up The Greatest Cup Ever

tervis tumblers seashells
My Seashell Tervis Cups

Bealls department store was one of my favorite southern stores. It was one of the only places I saw loads of the Tervis Tumblers for sale. It was also close to my home so I didn’t have to go to the mall. I really dislike malls.

I got turned on to the Tervis brand cup when my husband was given one as an office Christmas gift. It had an image of palm trees – a typical tropical scene – and it was made of heavy duty plastic, but other than that we looked at each other and shrugged. A cup? Okay, nice enough, but we both thought it was a bit of a strange gift. Continue reading Stop by Bealls and Pick Up The Greatest Cup Ever