Archive for Jingle


Peaceful Retreat To The Beach

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tiny shells collected on Sanibel Island Florida

I have been enjoying the warm sunshine we’ve been having on Sanibel the last few days… not just on the beach but outside in my back yard. I’ve been sorting…and sorting… and sorting shells. Why haven’t I been more organized in the last few days… errrrr… months…. okay, truthfully? Years! I guess thats just how I roll- I would rather spend my time doing something else other than “cleaning” (Oh how I hate that word!) but I guess enough is enough. I told y’all I wanted to do a post about the differences between some of the mini shells like the DRILLS, MUREXES and CANTHARUS like I did in my post Similar Sanibel Shells since I wanted to add more to that list. So I started looking through my Shellaboratory for each of the shells I wanted to photograph. Ack! I wanted the best of each species but I realized how dang unorganized I’ve been. Buckets, boxes and bins of uncategorized shells. Some were washed… some filled with sand. OMG

assortment of collected small Sanibel Florida shells

 So while I sort my shells to find the best GULF OYSTER DRILL, SHARP RIB DRILL, juvie APPLE and LACE MUREXES, I had to escape to the beach for a peaceful retreat at Gulfside City Park to find an absolutely gorgeous calm day.

peaceful retreat and shells on the beach of Sanibel Island

Oh… and more mini shells. I tried to just admire the shells on the beach without picking them up because…. seriously, we have enough. These days I try to only collect the shells I learn from, the ones that I give to others (like the post – Good Feeling About Seashells), the ones I decorate with or use in projects.  So these are the only ones I brought home today… Three BUTTON SHELLS, a shiny OLIVE, one sweet BABYS EAR, a wonderful WENTLETRAP and a little cutie juvie SHARKS EYE. We don’t often see oodles of black JINGLES so I couldn’t resist picking some up … and there were lots of them! I’m trying to fill up a tall vase for my home so I might go back and try to find more tomorrow. When my vase is done, I promise I’ll post it.

some seashells collected from Sanibel

So while I sort, sort, sort our minis I’ll sneak to the beach for peace, shells and sunshine.

calm collecting shells


Another Beautiful Cruise in Paradise

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rachel seashells cayo costa

Our Captiva Cruises boat pulled up to the shore of Cayo Costa at low tide around 1:30 yesterday …

cayo costa cruises shelling iLoveShelling

Within minutes, Rachel (KS) found 4 LETTERED OLIVES, 2 FALSE ANGEL WINGS, and AUGER and the colors of the rainbow in JINGLE SHELLS.

seashells cayo costa iLoveShelling cruise

Leanne (PA) strolled along the shore to find a true ANGEL WING and a few other goodies…

shelling cayo costa iloveshelling cruise gulf

Ahhhhh. It was so good to get back to Cayo Costa!

shelling gulf of mexico lee county seashells

I had the pleasure of meeting so many beautiful shellers while on the boat and walking the beach like sisters Beth and Barb (KY) who found SAND DOLLARS, WHELKS and OLIVES. Barb told me they have been hanging out with since the very beginning… almost 4 years ago! She said she still has it bookmarked on her computer under my first blog name “My Shelling Blog”. Ha! I felt like I knew them already!

beth barb kentucky visti cayo costa florida shelling

Patti and Tim (FL) were delightful! While Patti was shelling her heart out, Tim was photographing and videoing their whole day. What a good team!

patty tim cayo costa shelling

Nancy and “Babe” looked like they were in heaven together all day. She was glowing! Then I found out why. Cameron had surprised her with the cruise for her birthday and she was thrilled. Happy Birthday Nancy! You guys are so stinkin adorable! (heehee his name is Cameron but I just kept hearing Nancy say “Good find, Babe!” …. “Oh! Come here, Babe!” so cute)

cameron nancy cape coral shelling

John (MA) started out his trip to SW Florida as a birder but found that looking for different species of shells was just as much fun as looking for different species of birds. Here’s John picking up his first BABY’S EAR…

John babys ear

Boating was so much fun to0 as we got to see a BALD EAGLE in a nest, OSPREYS catching their fish lunch from the water, DOLPHINS playing…

dolphin watching shelling cruise

And seeing that the WHITE PELICANS are back on the islands…

white pelicans useppa island florida

When we arrived back on Captiva, we had a little Shell ‘N Tell so we could share some of our shells and finds. Sharon was a joy to meet !

sharon with shells captiva

She picked up WHITE CRESTED TELLIN on Cayo Costa. I only see these on Cayo Costa. I dont think Ive ever seen one on Sanibel.

white crested tellin cayo coast florida

I’m so happy I got to meet  Jan (KY) since I think she must be an artist as well. Jan showed me one of her favorite finds which was covered in BARNACLES and other animal growth marks. I love that kind of stuff too!

jan kentucky visit captiva seashells

Jerry found some really nice WHELKS on our trip but he told me also found a really large 10 inch empty WHELK at Blind Pass on Wednesday. He couldnt believe it because he thought he had stepped on a big rock in the water at low tide… then reached down and pulled up that huge LIGHTNING WHELK. WAHOO!

jerry captiva seashells

I was amazed at all the true ANGEL WINGS, FALSE ANGEL WINGS and even FALLEN ANGEL WINGS we found this time. Awesome!

angel wings quahog cayo costa

The MANATEES even came over to send us off with well wishes…

Manatee captiva cruises marina

It was a beautiful shelling cruise in paradise with a beautiful bunch of people.

shells found on Cayo costa

Join us on the next iLoveShelling cruise! CLICK HERE FOR DATES.

seashell shelling adventures pam

Before you go….

We have TWO Winners to announce for the Shelltastic SW FLorida Vacation Giveaway! :) I have to say- I am so grateful for Pointe Estero Beach Resort and Sealife By Congress to have been so generous with this giveaway to the shelling community. You both ROCK!

Drum Roll Please! …..

Our first winner for the Sealife By Congress stunning sterling silver Starfish Reef Pendant is………

Kathie Porter!

The Grand Prize Winner for 4days/3 nights stay at Pointe Estero Beach Resort in Fort Myers Beach is…..

Denise Stahl (AS, FL)!

Congratulations to you both! Sealife By Congress will be contacting you Kathie and Pointe Estero will contact you as well, Denise. So hold tight until you get your info! Thank you all for participating!



Marco Island shells iLS

Since we knew we’d be gone for the entire day, Clark and I packed up a cooler, snacks and a change of clothes to head for Marco Island, Florida for a day trip from Sanibel. Clark’s Rotary Club had an event in south Marco that we wanted to attend (he is still President – so proud of him!) so we figured if we had time on the way home, we’d stop at a beach. We did! We stopped at Tigertail Beach!

tiger tail beach marco map

This is the very first time we’ve been on this beach so we had to get the lay of the land by looking at the map (above). We decided to wade through the little lagoon to get to the gulf side beach on the other side…

wading water tiger tail

On my way over, I saw Jonathan and Rachel carrying handfuls of SAND DOLLARS…

sand dollars marco florida

Wow! They said they found them all along the beach in the surf line…Cool!

sand dollars tiger tail

So wading through the lagoon and down a sweet beach path we went… to find our first treasures from the Gulf Of Mexico.

seashells marco beach

All I started seeing was ROSE PETAL TELLINS! I love them!

rose petal tellins marco


sunray venus shell marco florida

We could not find any SAND DOLLARS but that’s okay because we found so many other goodies like these two FLAT SCALLOPS. Clark’s beautiful orange one is on the left, and I found the larger perfect (heehee) purple one on the right.  I call them “FLATS” but they are really called  ZIGZAG SCALLOPS .

flat scallop marco island

Clark found the prettiest PURPLISH SEMELES!

purple semele marco

We both found CANCELLATE SEMELES as well…

cancellate semele marco florida

I was thrilled with all of the multi colored JINGLE SHELLS and those ROSE PETAL TELLINS!

jingle pink tellin shells

From Tigertail Beach in Marco, Florida traveling back by car to Sanibel Island it took us about 1 and 1/2 hours by way of interstate 75…

map from Sanibel to marco

We didn’t even get there until after 4 pm and we stayed about 3 1/2 hours to have a wonderful evening exploring a new beach.

conch shell marco florida

I am so glad we had the time to stop and take our time to walk down to the north end of the spit. It took us an hour and 1/2 each way so I’m so glad we had plenty of water and thank goodness we always have shelling supplies and sunscreen in the car at all times. This was our loot we brought home… and yes, Super Sheller Clark found that gorgeous ALPHABET CONE I put right smack in the middle of our fabulous collection. Thanks Tigertail!

Marco Island shells iLS

Join us on our next trip tomorrow, Saturday April 12, as we are taking a shelling cruise to explore the island of Cayo Costa! Clark and I will show you where to find the hidden treasures of that beautiful island… CLICK HERE.


jingle shell frame sanibel

Every beach I went to this week (before it starting raining) seemed to shout “JINGLE SHELLS!” to me. I’m not the only one who has seen gobs of JINGLES. Remember, Barb was picking them up too last week

jingle shells hand

So now that it’s been raining for 2 days, I figure this is the perfect time to think about sorting, organizing and displaying some of these treasures I’ve been picking up lately…. JINGLES! Who doesn’t love a JINGLE!

jingle seashells

I’ve now started a “Jingle Jar” that I bought from Home Goods. Yeah, yeah. I know it’s really, really, reeeaaaally tall and I need a oodles of JINGLES to fill it up. But JINGLES are very common to find on Sanibel so I don’t think I’ll have too much trouble filling it all the way to the top by the end of the summer…. Maybe.

jingle jar seashell decor

When I find different ones, I love to sort shells by color so I’m always tickled when I find them sand color, bright orange, charcoal black, snow white and mellow yellow.

jingle shell display

The bright orange ones make great accents to any display in smaller jars everywhere in my house… especially by my fave ANGULAR TRITON find from our January trip to Turks And Caicos

decorate with jingle seashells

The black ones look so handsome together just laying in a dish…

Black jingles display

I am going to make time for shell craft projects the summer (hopefully on rainy days like today) because when I thought about organizing my JINGLE SHELLS, I always get inspired by thinking about Jane’s JINGLE SHELL frame I featured at the top of this post. Here’s a close up of her precious piece with her darling family…

jingle shell frame close

Jane loves to embellish anything and everything with shells! Somebody was going to throw out this old lantern but Jane rescued it and encrusted it with JINGLES and other shells. It’s a gorgeous accent lantern now for her seaside home.

decorate seashell lantern

She even adds shells to the edges of her plain cork coasters to make them adorable cork coasters! She lined one with BUTTON SHELLS, one with KITTENS PAWS, another with different CLAMS and of course one with JINGLE SHELLS. She is the glue gun Craft Queen!

decorate seashell coasters

And other people do fun things with JINGLES too. Remember this “Jingle Cat” I showed you from the 2012 Sanibel Shell Show last year? LOL It still makes me smile!

jingle seashell cat with kitten paws

So okay, what I’m trying to say is this…

If you aren’t finding the larger shells on the beach, don’t get disappointed. It’s the perfect opportunity to look at the other beautiful shells that are right there in front of you on Sanibel that you might not otherwise see. So many people overlook JINGLES. They are precious! And when it’s cold or rainy or you are stuck inside, get that box of shells out of the closet where nobody can see them and get these beautiful treasures displayed! Even if you arent as crafty as Jane, you can easily put them in a jar, dish or vessel to always admire them. Every day you will be brought back to that memorable trip to the beach.shells and water iLS

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ask request to prom

Alyssa, Jacob wants to know if you will go to prom with him! Jacob (from Ohio) is so clever! He is not asking Alyssa to go to prom in plain old pen and ink, he is asking her by writing in PEN SHELLS from the beach on Sanibel Island, Florida.

jacob pen shells

I hope she says yes, Jacob!

seashells on seashore sanibel

There were quite a few of those PEN SHELLS washing in with some other shells on the Sanibel side of Blind Pass this far from the bridge…

shells sanibel lazy flamingo area

Barb from Wisconsin found lots of shells she was looking for… JINGLE SHELLS!

barb wisconson jingle shells

She collects JINGLES for her mom to use them for making shell frames. Pretty!

jingle shells hand

It looks like the bigger shells (other than PEN SHELLS) are still taking their time getting on to shore after our strong north west winds this week but Chris and Lynn from New Jersey were enjoying every minute looking for them. They told me they already have enough shells but always look for something unusual. That’s what keeps me shelling too!

chris lynn new jersey shelling

It was so nice to meet y’all this morning and good luck to you Jacob!

collecting seashells seashore sanibel


Categories : Jingle, Pen Shell
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i Love Shelling Cruise To Cayo Costa

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gail carr pam rambo cruise

Twenty five die hard shellers bundled up for 25 mph winds and 44 degree weather for a boat ride with Captiva Cruises to Cayo Costa for an awesome shelling adventure. Oh Yaya! Gail Carr showed up in the same fave hoodie and tote bag stuffed with shelling gear just like me … ready for whatever the day would bring. We looked like twins! LOL And before we took off, I met another sheller ready for the day. Mariah from Seattle told me she found a JUNONIA at Lover’s Key (in Bonita Springs) just a few days ago.

mariah junonia lovers key WA

It’s a beauty! After she showed it to me, she tucked it safely away in the car before she boarded the boat for our trip. Congratshellations, Mariah!

mariah junonia

We had no problems in the rough water at all thanks to our fearless Captain Skip and his Co-Captain Elliott. Our boat trip was smooth as silk.

captains skip elliott

Our shelling adventure began… only 15 minutes into our boat trip we witnessed an unfortunate site. We saw billowing black smoke on the tip of North Captiva Island that had just started. Captain Skip immediately called 911 but thank goodness fire and rescue were already on the way. A house went up in flames from what firefighters think was from a bad generator. There was nothing we could do to help so we continued to Cayo Costa.

burning house fire cayo costa florida

I think we all had a sick feeling in our stomaches by the site of it but we were reassured there was nothing we could do and there was no reports of anybody inside the house. We got quick insiders information from our friends, retired volunteer Captiva Fire Fighter Ron and retired Captiva Fire Commissioner Phyllis (Ron’s wife and a shelling buddy of mine). They both happen to be on our shelling cruise with their granddaughter Isabelle.

ron isabelle phyllis roots

As soon as we got on the beach, it warmed up a bit and the worries of the day started to melt away. Within 5 minutes, I scanned the high tide wrack line and saw an AMERICAN CARRIER SHELL!

Xenophora conchyliophora florida

Wow! I have shown these several times and I always say the same thing… “I know it’s not pretty…BUT really! This is a cool shell!” This shell is a collector of shells too, just like we collect shells. When the MOLLUSK that made this shell was alive, it came out of the opening and picked up that ARK shell and cemented it to its own shell. I’ve heard it may do this to be camouflaged but it could be for balance or to move more easily. I think they do it for the same reasons shellers collect shells… it’s just in their blood- they can’t help it. I have a video HERE on another post about CARRIER SHELLS if you want to see it. Anyway, if it had been laying on the beach this way in the next photo, I would never had seen it. It looks like a clump of shell bits.

carrier shell cayo costa

We made it around to the south tip of the island to find two OSPREYS building a nest.

osprey nest cayo costa

It was such a show with these two huge birds bringing sticks and fish into their nest, it was hard to leave the entertainment. Donna and I stood watching for a few minutes and when I took this photo, I caught one of the birds in flight and one in the nest. I hope you can you see it.

donna osprey nest

Then we pulled ourselves away to keep shelling…

shellers cayo costa

Merna from Nova Scotia (this weather was warm to her- ha!) told me a little something she heard about JINGLE SHELLS…

mirna nova scotia

She showed me that when you look at the inside of good JINGLES, you should see a baby’s foot print. I’ve never heard that! So she showed me and sure enough.. there it was. The MOLLUSK’s muscle scar looks just like a baby foot print left behind in the sand. Cute! You can see it best in the shell all the way to the right.

baby's foot jingle shells

 Layla and Ron from New Jersey were collecting ATLANTIC GIANT COCKLES. Can you believe she was in shorts?! ha

layla ron huge cockle angel

I was thrilled that Tonya Clayton was on our shelling trip as well. She just published a book about how to “read” beaches called “How To Read A Florida Gulf Coast Beach”.

tonya clayton read a beach

I love to “read beaches” by looking at wrack lines, tidal pools and shifting sand but I didn’t know how to read little holes in the sand. I have read many sand trails like my AUGER ART and OLIVE SHELLING but I assumed these little holes in the sand were from the COQUINAS we saw today but they aren’t! They are just little air pockets that rise from below the sand. She can tell by the shape of them. Cool!

air holes in sand

We all had a fabulous day collecting, learning and enjoying the beauty of the islands (even though it was a little chilly) but I was very impressed by Evan’s ALBINO LIGHTNING WHELK.

Evan albino whelk

He found lots of OLIVES, WHELKS, TULIPS  a NUTMEG as well but his ALBINO was awesome. BTW, he was the second one to hit the beach before anyone else so he almost had first dibs since we were the only ones on the entire beach.

evan seashell bucket cayo

The first guy down the beach was DAVE. Yep! He hit the mother load. Take a look at the monster LIGHTNING WHELK! The other side has lots of BARNACLES but they are going to clean up really nicely with some bleach diluted in water like I showed how to do on another post HERE. Great find Dave!

dave cruise cayo whelk s dakota

Not only that, he found ANGEL WINGS (okay, I have to snicker… it’s not an “angle” wing- heehee), a PAPER FIG and some other goodies too.

dave angel wings

On our boat ride back we saw the fire was contained and put out… but the house burned to the ground in that short time we were on the beach. Again, nobody was hurt but lives will be changed. We all feel for the home owners and the neighbors in this small tight knit community only accessible by boat or small plane.

burnt house cayo costa

I’m so thankful the cold, windy weather didn’t scare off my new shelling friends to go on our island outing so our small community of shellers could get to know each other a little better too. Thanks you guys! And thanks to Super Sheller Clark for going too to show everybody how he uses that shelling backhoe of his in the water. He had a group so far ahead of me on the beach, I didn’t even get to take a picture of them. Shucks! Any way, here are a few more photos from our iLoveShelling Exshellent Adventure!

debbie tree roots cayo

rachael babys ears

katie sarah VA shellers

shelling troopers

tiny doulbe false angel wings

cloudy periwinkles cayo

For more Shelling Adventures, click on the this next image…

iLoveShelling ShellingAdventures