My Christmas List

Well, it’s that time of year. I’ll be honest, there’s not much on my list. I’m fortunate to have the love and support of family and good friends, my health, and a cozy place to call home (bonus that it’s in a tropical locale).

Oh wait, I do have one wish, that all of you have a wonderful holiday season filled with love!

“All I want for Christmas is a real good tan
Take me to the Islands, put my feet in the sand
Rockin’ to and fro with the rhythm of the ocean
Singin’ Silent Night with the palm trees ablowin’Ooh, don’t you think it’s a pretty good plan?
All I want for Christmas is a real good tan”

And yes, I do have a pretty good tan. 😉

Sandhenge

I took these photos almost a month ago on the Treasure Island beach. These are just a few of the amazing creations completed as part of the Sanding Ovations Sand Sculpture competition.

The artists certainly had fun with the Sandhenge theme as most of the pieces were quite humorous.

Though I didn’t capture it in the third photo, there was even a robed researcher ready to diligently record the results as the first crash test dummy took a ride on the wheel.

“There Goes Peatcasso, Showing Off in Art Class Again” was the title for the piece in the last photo.

The sand sculptures had held up remarkably well over the past month but I suspect that this afternoon’s thunderstorm will have disintegrated them back into beach.

Kitchen, Part 1

As usual, my straightforward remodeling project took a myriad of twists and turns. To begin with, the boxes of cabinets that the old owner had left behind, were not, as I had hoped, the set of uppers for the south side of the kitchen (the north ones were previously installed and look quite nice). Instead, they were a mismatched jumble of doors and a few shelves.

A trip to IKEA (the purveyor of said cabinets) proved entirely pointless because they no longer carry that style. Not only that, they don’t make anything even remarkably similar. Grrr!

Back to the drawing board. As luck would have it, there were four shelves (and the remainder from when I cut the linen closet shelves was just the right size for the top display piece). Good thing open shelves are popular nowadays!

Of course, before I could install my latest inspiration I had to patch the wall and cover up the weird paint job. Annoyingly, three coats of paint weren’t enough. Frustrated, I took a break and worked on an electrical repair in hopes of being electrocuted so I wouldn’t have to do anymore painting. No such luck!

After yet another trip to the hardware store I was finally able to install the shelves. I think they turned out pretty well, considering.

Now all I have left to replace are the bottom cabinets, the sink, and the countertop. Piece of cake, right? 🙄

Old Cabinets
Removed Cabinets Have Been Repurposed to My Tool Shed
Walls Patched and Painted, Shelves Installed

Trading Shots

My friend Robert is a fellow jetty bum who also loves to take photos (he actually does it for a living while I merely dabble in the field). We met a few months back when he shared this photo he snapped.

That’s me in the background, perched on my favorite sunset-watching spot. As someone who is usually behind the camera I appreciated the picture.

So, I was happy to be able to reciprocate a couple weeks ago. Robert was standing on a nearby bench, angling for the perfect image of a fishing boat returning from a day out at sea. The sun even decided to add a little pizzazz. As you can imagine, he was pleased to have the snap!

Such a Deal!

For the past couple months, I’ve been scouring Facebook Marketplace to find some things for my house. After all, why pay full price for something new when a lightly used item will work just as well?

There’s an awful lot of stuff listed each day so I’ve become pretty good at skimming through quickly. This post made me do a double take this morning:

It’s a bit out of my price range but man, what a good looking piece of mulch! In case you were wondering, yes, it is still available. Let me know if you want the contact info…

Two Birds, One Stone

Anyone who knows me will know why I really dislike that banal expression. However, in this case, the intent of the phrase actually fits.

The previous owners left behind quite a few random objects: assorted bricks, two used, dual-pane, vinyl windows, chainlink sections of a large dog run, and five pieces of chopped up telephone pole.

The bricks I have yet to decide upon but I’ve sold the windows and am in the process of selling the dog run. Disposal of the pole sections had me stymied until I saw this ad in my neighborhood online media.

Light bulb moment! Not only could I repurpose my poles but I could use them to prop up my mailbox, which has a Tower of Pisa complex. Over the past few weeks I snapped up brightly colored “oops” paint whenever I found it (and considering I’m at the home improvement store roughly every other day, I had a lot of opportunities).

This week I hauled my poles out of the backyard, washed them off, drenched them in two coats of paint, and this afternoon, installed them. I think they turned out pretty well, if I do say so myself.

Beach Hair, Don’t Care

This Snowy Egret (Egretta thula) wasn’t the least bit perturbed by the breeze. I placed these two photos next to each other so you could note the wind-revealed ear hole and the clear nictating membrane (halfway across the eye) in the second photo. The “third eyelid” was helping protect the eyeball during the gusts.

Usually so reserved and well-groomed, it was humorous to see this one a bit ruffled. But no, I wasn’t making fun, I promise!

Are You Mocking Me?!

Dolphin Tax

I was pleasantly rewarded with a lively cetacean show during a jaunt down to Fort De Soto Park earlier this week. It was a beautiful, sunny morning and conditions for fishing were supposedly excellent (according to the helpful and informative tides4fishing.com).

As a result, the pier was lined with hopeful anglers. I watched schools of bait fish glinting in the shallows but the show was stolen by a pod of speedy dolphins. Dashing, spinning, and even jumping out of the water as they searched for food.

I was excited when one man’s reel started spinning, I felt certain that I’d get to see him haul in big one. However, his line quickly went slack and as he brought up his empty hook I heard him mutter, “Damn dolphin!”

Apparently, the ever intelligent creatures have figured out how to successfully remove bait from a hook without getting caught. Admittedly, it is much easier than chasing down a fish in the open water!

When I asked him what he’s trying to catch, he replied, “Whatever the dolphins let me.” He was not a happy camper! Come on down, the fishing is free, after you pay the dolphin…