Archive for iLS.com In the News
It’s been raining for two days with thunder rumbling and lightning cracking around the island without notice. Any time there is lightning… I stay off the beach and find a project inside my house until the coast is clear (literally!). I ran out when it cleared for a couple of hours to see what the beach looked like… the sea was angry, my friends. The waves were crashing so hard on the beach, it’s starting to erode it again. It’s never ending, is it. But this might just bring in loads of shells for next week AND it’s still warm and beautiful so I hope this might warm some of you up that are in 30 degree weather right now.
I’ve got to admit, our rain and slight erosion (that will come right back) is better than inches and inches of snow that Minnesota and other Midwest states are getting from Winter Storm Achilles right now. It’s May, Mother Nature! What are you thinking?
Anyhoo, speaking of Minnesota and having a rain and snow delay… back in March, I had a little fun giving some shelling advice to some baseball fans at a Minnesota Twins Spring Training game.
Did you know the Minnesota Twins practice their Spring Training games in Fort Myers? It’s always fun to see a few games right here in Lee County…. but this time it was a pretty special game for me. I was interviewed about shelling by Dan Gladden and Kris Atteberry for the Minnesota Twins Radio Network in the radio announcers booth overlooking the field during a rain delay on March 20th. I got to hang out with Twins 2-time World Series champ Dan Gladden!
I had an amazing time talking baseball and seashells with brilliant sports broadcaster Kris Atteberry too…
I was supposed to be interviewed in-between the 4th and 6th innings but since they tarped the field because of the rain, they called me up early. I felt like I was just brought up from the minor leagues for my first pitch for the big leagues. LOL
Thank goodness I didn’t have too much time to think about it since I was a bundle of nerves. They gave me a headset… then they started pitching questions. I just had to bunt. But think about it, there many similarities with baseball and shelling. Both are outdoor sports, people collect both shells and baseballs, you always remember the home runs (finding the rare shells) and both attract really nice folks. I’m sure there are countless similarities!
It was just so much fun. Wanna hear the interview? I just got a clip of it last week so…. Here it is!
Here’s the link to hear what ball players want to know about shelling but I can’t figure out how to make it stay on the page so you can see the photos too. It will also take you to a black page with the play button. Sorry! But come on back, you hear?
Click on… iLoveShelling Minnesota Twins radio
Were you able to listen to it? So much fun to share the shelling love! Oh, before we got called up to the radio booth, Clark and I looked for some shelter to get out of the rain. We ended up being right beside the beautiful young lady, Marcella who was about to sing the National Anthem to kick off the game. Even though it rained, the night at the Hammond Stadium ball park was spectacsheller!
But let’s get back to this angry sea on Sanibel I showed you in the first 2 photos… the shells and bling are getting stirring up with this weather front we are having. In a few days, those treasures will hopefully be washing up on our beaches! Let’s keep our fingers crossed the upcoming west winds are good to us and see what gifts Mother Nature will be willing to let us have. At least it’s not snow.
Sanibel and Captiva are featured on Swedish National Television!
I was very fortunate to have spent a few hours back in March on the beach with SVT reporter Sara and videographer Ava (both from Sweden) to show them why our beaches are so special…. of course my answer would be….shelling! I had so much fun with them!
They also filmed other great ways to enjoy our islands like fishing, biking, wildlife and the great restaurants to paint the gorgeous picture of why we all love it here so much. This excellent film will run this month on Sveriges Television (SVT) which is the Swedish public service television company with the widest range of programming of all TV companies in Sweden.
I thought you’d like to see it too! So here is this piece on our sweet Sanibel made for the popular SVT lifestyle show called “Good Evening”… or in Swedish “Go’kväll“.
The “Island” is Sanibel. “Their Hunters” are Super Sheller Clark (aka Mr Rambo- heehee), me, and YOU in the top National story of the New York Times! Dr. Leal and The Shell Museum were in it too. Wahoo!
How did this happen? Well, first of all, let me introduce you to the talented folks that made this story happen.
The brilliant writer/reporter (17 years with The NY Times) Lizette Alvarez who threaded this beautiful piece together with her gift of words and Angel Valentin top notch photographer from Puerto Rico and South Florida …
I’m still boggled by the whole thing but… Out of the blue we got a call from Lizette to introduce herself and tell us that she would like to do a story about shelling on Sanibel. She said she’d like to come to Sanibel to interview us and she was hoping to get a photographer to cover the story. Heck Yay-ya! Two days later we were hanging out at Lighthouse Beach showing Lizette and Angel the treasures of Sanibel.
It was a gorgeous low tide evening with lots of shells for collecting as well as exposed live mollusks. We couldn’t have placed an order for a more perfect evening to share the wonders of our island. Hunting along side us was my new BFF Isabel (which happens to be Lizette’s daughter) perfecting Sanibel’s signature stance… The Sanibel Stoop.
It turns out that Isabel is an excellent sheller. Within minutes of being on the beach, she found a nice sized unbroken ANGEL WING…
In the article, Lizette wrote about a 13 year old boy that found a STARFISH. This is the BRITTLESTAR STARFISH that Hunter from Mulberry, Florida found…
Hunter and his sister Audrey showed us all of the other STARFISH and CRABS they were finding and learning about too.
Shelling Sistah Denise Kisko from North Carolina made it in the story too!
This next photo is Denise being interviewed by Lizette… meanwhile, “a 13 year old girl” got curious about her abandoned shell pile she had been digging in. Okay, this is funny… Denise was quoted saying “Don’t find anything in my pile” kiddingly to a 13 year old girl. That 13 year old girl was Isabel! LOL Isn’t that so cute?
If you haven’t read the story yet, a black-and-white photo in our house was mentioned (well, Mr. Rambo’s “shell-festooned house” was mentioned- hahaha). We have a wall in our hallway with photos of our families and special memories.
In one of those frames is a photo of Clark’s shell collection on his bed at age 7.
He arranged all of his favorite shells on his cowboy bedspread then asked his mom to take a picture of it. A-dor-a-ble.
After 3 hours of laughing, learning, sharing and seashell hunting, we had to say goodbye. It was an evening that we will never forget especially because we really had a fantastic time. I’m not saying I wasn’t nervous…because I was totally shaking in my flip flops at first. But then after being with such fun down to earth people…
Who genuinely love life…
It was easy to relax and share what we love… Shelling and Sanibel. Thank you Lizette, for contacting us.
To read the New York Times story, click on this next image….
Note to self: remember to get a photo of me too with the gang when something big happens … like being interviewed by one of the biggest publications in the world. ;)
Shelling on Sanibel was featured on CBS Sunday Morning today! And I made the cut along with Leroy!!! Waaahoooo! After you see the segment, I’m sure you will have questions about that crazy woman pictured above. I promise I will explain but first you have to watch CBS correspondent Bill Geist “shell out” this fantastic piece on our beloved island of Sanibel and her seashell treasures. (Click on the video to get it to show up -sorry I’ll try to fix it- but come back here to read the rest of the story.) Still can’t see it? CLICK HERE
Wasn’t that fabulous? Okay, yes, that crazy lady who talked about breaking her husband’s leg was…. ahem….. me. Bill Geist had asked me if I was an extreme sheller. Hmmm. Me? Where do I start? Then the leg-breaking incident popped into my head. Before we lived on Sanibel, Clark and I came for vacation to shell the beaches just like most of y’all. The first morning out on the beach, we had a little fun competition finding shells. At one point when I was doing the Sanibel Stoop, Clark gave me a little push so I lost my balance and fell in the sand. We laughed and laughed at being silly shellers but then I planned my attack. He was wading in the shallow water, when I decided to take my “shell revenge” . I guess I was too obvious since he dug his feet into the sand to keep his balance when he saw me make my move for his shell. Unfortunately, he dug his feet in too deep (See? It wasn’t completely my fault! LOL) and I caught him at the wrong angle to push him out of the way. His body spun side ways but his leg didn’t. His shin bone snapped in a spiral break that sounded like a gun shot. I know… awful, right? I felt so badly! That was probably 17 years ago and as most of you know, he healed just fine and it didn’t slow Super Sheller Clark down when it comes to finding shells. So now you know the rest of the story.
This past weekend we drove 35 minutes from Sanibel to Little Hickory Beach in Bonita Springs, Florida in search of seashells.
Walking north to the pass from the public parking lot (a bargain price of $2 for 2 hours) only took about 15 minutes to find loads of FIGHTING CONCHS.
After a few minutes more, Clark found a SAND DOLLAR…
I couldn’t get over how many MOSSY ARKS were washed up on the beach mixed in with a few pieces of CORAL and my fave of all faves… WORM SHELLS! They were only tips of WORMIES but any piece is a good piece in my book.
I don’t think I have ever seen so many MOSSY ARKS in one place on any beach before so I gathered a few together to show you exactly what they look like.
I know, I know…. not the prettiest of shells but I don’t see them all that often on Sanibel so I was intrigued with them.
Did I read your mind and know that it reminds you of another shell? It looks like the TURKEY WING! The TURKEY WING and the MOSSY are both ARK shells so they are very similar but unfortunately, I think the MOSSY ARK got the short end of the stick when it comes to looks. ;( Here’s a comparison so you can see them side by side. The TURKEY WING is on the left…
Oops! I switched them in this next exterior photo, the MOSSY ARK is now on the left in this photo. You can now see how similar they are!
We had a wonderful day walking the beach and seeing different shells and the beautiful SANDWICH TERNS and BLACK SKIMMERS…
Along with the SAND DOLLAR, sweet Clark gave me a yellow DAISY that he found on the beach…
We weren’t the only ones who enjoyed the beautiful day in Little Hickory…
Okay, while we are on the subject of Bonita Beach, I have to show you an article about iLoveShelling.com that was published in Coastal Life magazine of the News Press. Weehoo! Click on the logo to read it!
This wedding gown embellished with seashells would be any bride’s dream come true.
She painstakingly sewed and glued shells, beads and pearls for an extraordinarily elegant silhouette.
Her artistry in every detail is phenomenal.
I’m in awe of how beautiful she and the dress are in this back drop of Sanibel and Captiva.
Melinda made flower girl dresses embellished with seashells to complete her bridal collection.
Laura and Valya were seashell princesses of the beach.
I was tickled to tag along on a photo shoot at Captiva’s Blind Pass beach with friend and producer Ilene Safron of Main Sail Video Productions as she and her team filmed Melinda for a national television segment. I have no idea what this shoot will be for or when it will air but I’m sure Nancy will let us know when she has details (fingers crossed!).
It was a day to remember with Nancy from Lee County VCB, Melinda, photographer Doug, Tracy (from Main Sail Video as well) and Ilene.
These talented folks have a lot of fun!
It was a beautiful day for Melinda to share with her mom as well.
To see her dress on display on Sanibel, stop by Melinda’s beautiful retail shop inspired by the sea called Surroundings.