Ahhhh. A warm, sunny day on a beach with miles of turquoise water AND a few seashells. Heaven on earth!
Our afternoon iLoveShelling boat trip with Captiva Cruises took us to Cayo Costa Island to experience a wonderful adventure with a few “firsts”. Susan from Michigan found her first LETTERED OLIVE!
Ardys (WI), Gene and Susan learned how to use their shell nets and “backhoes” for the first time- that first OLIVE got them going. They are pros now!
Tamela from Georgia found her FIGHTING CONCH conch.
I got to meet some awesome families visiting Cayo Costa for the first time like Ashley, Reese, Sonny and Chandler from Oklahoma.
And like this awesome shelling family Reese, Tamra, Sue and Reilly from New Hampshire. Nope, that wasn’t a typo- we had 2 Reeses that were able to meet each other on the way back to the boat. First time hanging out with 2 cutie sheller girls named Reese.
These were Reilly’s favorite shells she found. That’s an itty bitty teenie weenie little bright orange SCALLOP SHELL. Adorbs!
Her first BABYS EAR! Sue is visiting SW Florida all the way from Plymouth, England to do some shelling and was ticked to collect a BABYS EAR shell.
I’m so thankful to Ellen and Tom (CO) who came on our trip with stories and thoughtful gifts so I’m thrilled they found some beautiful treasures to take back with them from this gorgeous day.
Well I shouldn’t say ALL of their treasures were “beautiful” haha. Yes that GAUDY NATICA, double SUNRAY VENUS, double ALTERNATE TELLIN and most of their shells are fabulous but Shellen Ellen found a SPIDER CRAB shell (at the top) that is a very cool piece of “Beach Bling” but …. beautiful? Naaaaa. haha
So much fun to hang out and talk with shellers because we all have so much more in common than just shelling. Susan and Bill (NC) were no exception- so much fun to hang out and chat with y’all while we look for shells.
Same thing for talking to Julie and Patrick (Chicago) in between scooping for shells along the surf’s edge.
So I found out that Jay and Jo (Indiana) are just about as obsessed with shelling as much as Clark and I are. Fun!
As we were pulling away from the dock on Cayo Costa, a family of MANATEES popped up out of the water to say Hi! That’s a first for me on this back side of the island.
They hung around the boat for a few minutes putting on a show for us. Cool!
Also on the way back to Captiva, I had to take a photo of Kris, Linda, Diane and Dave because I’ve introduced Linda and Diane before on another cruise. They met on another iLoveShelling cruise and this time brought their husbands with them- the story is so cool! CLICK HERE
Don’t you just love, love, love Gwen’s smile? This is exactly how I always feel when I find shells or bling that make me happy.
She even found a huge chunk of JUNONIA.
Of course everybody had big smiles as well after receiving $25 gift certificates to Sealife By Congress
Shelling is beach therapy. I love a long walk along the water’s edge searching for wildlife and picking up a few beautiful shells.
Yesterday at Sanibel’s Bowmans Beach, the crowds disappeared as we walked passed the families set up for their beach day with umbrellas, coolers and beach chairs. The further we walked, the quieter my mind became. Everything else on the planet slipped away other than seeing a big wide open beach with shells, sand, water and sky.
Then the trance began. It’s like I’m being hypnotized each time I’m at the beach when I hear the waves wash up on the sand with jingle of shells rolling back and forth.
When I walk along the shell line from a recent higher tide I’m searching for shapes, textures and colors of the shells I know so well. Aha! A SHARK’S EYE hidden among the ARKS, KITTENS PAWS and VENUS CLAMS.
There are days when the shells are piled high or washing up at your feet in droves but long walks like Clark and I took yesterday are my absolute favorite. It’s what keeps me going back time and time again. It’s my beach therapy.
Amazingly enough when we got back, I got a little surprise in my email inbox. I’m in a short little film about shelling! I was asked in an interview back in February about what I love about shelling. Well…. everything actually! But then it all boiled down to how it makes me feel- I’m just so dang happy when I’m on the beach and shelling takes my mind to another galaxy. It makes me appreciate how beautiful this life is. It’s just that simple. The Beaches Of Fort Myers and Sanibel did an A-MAZING job on this film and I am over the moon shell, humbled and honored that I was asked to participate in it.
I hope you enjoy!
PS- Oh and yes- That’s Elliot Sudal (Shelliot- heehee ) in the film too. See? I told you he isn’t just a fisherman, he’s a sheller! CLICK HERE to read my post about him.