Feb 11, 2010

Big White Farm House

I drove into town to see the building that had burned and took my camera. I ended up driving around getting shots of the countryside.
Here is a big farmhouse.
I'd love to live in a little farmhouse with a big barn and lots of land.
I'd have animals and gardens and feed the birds. I'd even start doing the bird count again.
Maybe one day.

Jan 4, 2010

Beach Wedding Postcard

Treasures Photo Save the Date postcard A new "save-the-date" card available at "Sandpiper Wedding". I use photographs of my own seashell collection to create my cards and other items, which make these cards very unique. Customize the back with wedding information and easily add your engagement photo to the front.

Jun 8, 2009

Please Visit my New England Blog

I have begun a new blog about my area of New England and included lots of photos of the area of New Hampshire where I live. Please check it out...@ New England's Narrow Road It's just getting started but I hope to include links to other area bloggers and show off some of the crafters in my area. New England is and entrepreneurial place. In my little town alone we have sheep farmers who use the fleece to spin their own yarn to sell. One lady that I know of has angora rabbits for this purpose as well. We have sugar shacks where maple syrup is made in the Spring. My neighbor (and many other people in these parts) raise their own chickens for food and eggs. Another neighbor casts pewter sculptures in a little shed next to his house and sells them for a good amount of money. There is even a couple who raises sled dogs for racing. So I think I will always be able to find something interesting to write about, and I'll be taking lots of new pictures too. I have another blog started to sell my seashell photography too. To see what I've got going on there, please visit Seashells by Millhill. Thanks very much to my faithful followers.

May 23, 2009

Seashells and Remembering Florida Beaches

Sanibel Seashell Collection printWhen I make items to sell in my Beachcombers store, I think of the beautiful Florida beaches. They are almost always over crowded and are probably even worse now, but they are gorgeous. I try to envision how nice it must have been to go to the Keys, or Daytona Beach back in the 60's before all the people invaded the state.
I moved there in 1979 and it was pretty nice then, but I didn't have any money to take trips, and I sure wish I had found a way to enjoy the state before it got so full of people. As time went on we did find ways to beat the madness and find quiet times on or near the water. One Thanksgiving we spent the day out on our pontoon boat and saw nobody! It was great traveling up and down the intracoastal - we had it to ourselves while people were at their relatives stuffing themselves with turkey. I had cooked our turkey the day before so we could have sandwiches out on the boat. When I make my seashell posters and mugs and things, I think of the gulf coast and how gorgeous the sunsets are there. I remember taking the kids down to the beach in the morning before everyone else was awake (my kids were always early risers) and watching the stingrays glide along just off shore. There is always plenty to do near the water even if it's just enjoying the view. I'm so glad I kept my shells.

May 20, 2009

Our Trip to Balancing Rock

For years I've been hearing about balancing rock. It was suppose to be "up past the lake" and "out in the woods" and it was this "big rock balancing on top of a small one". All the locals knew about balancing rock and it seemed that most of them had trekked up to see it. My 11 year old son and I tried to find it numerous times, after getting faulty directions and once we came very close, but didn't walk far enough. Then the day came. It was overcast and cool and the neighbor boys were going to take a walk to Balancing Rock and invited us to go. At last I was going to see the famous landmark. We headed out the long dirt road and walked for about 20 minutes. The boys hit stones with sticks and talked about what they would do if they saw a bear. I took pictures.

At last we came to a clearing with two small houses...now this was a 20 minute walk out into the middle of nowhere! The boys told us it was the family camp and these people came out and stayed there to hunt and just hang out.

I guess it was just a place for them to go and get away from it all and grow flowers or vegetables in their bathtub in the front yard and no one would care. Just beyond the first house was this little sign and we up over a hill and down into the area where I got my first look at the famous balancing rock. I said, "This is it?"

It wasn't really what I expected...just a big rock (not an unusual thing in NH) and I didn't really see the thrill, but it was a nice walk.

May 11, 2009

Florida Hurricane Season

Tropical Nightmare postcard Get ready Florida!! Yikes. In June- June 1st- Hurricane season begins and if you live in Florida, the Carolinas, Louisiana or Texas, you most likely pay close attention when one is spotted forming off the coast of Africa. Where will it go? That is the question and there is no answer for a week or so, depending on how fast the storm moves. Along the way weather updates will inform you of the suspected track and strength and the forecasters will try their best to determine what will happen far enough in advance to evacuate and warn residents. I always had a "hurricane box" ready for each season (the season lasts until November) and I had batteries, flashlights, tarp for any holes in the roof, extra water, a medical kit and things like that, so we would be somewhat ready for the damage. After seeing the damage of Hurricane Andrew to south Florida, I knew that if we ever got something like that in the central part of the state it would be a nightmare. In 2004 my area was hit with 3 hurricanes within 6 weeks. Charlie, Frances and Jeanne are names I will not forget soon. This postcard is a photo I took of Jeanne as she came on shore in the south and traveled up through the state and destroyed the eastern beaches on the way. Charlie was the most devastating and hit us first, so after that the wind from Frances and Jeanne was almost nothing. There was lots of damage. Many homes lost part of their roof, but my roof and windows were all fine. The trees were not. My big live Oaks were destroyed and the limbs covered the yard. It was hot (and that is an understatement) and the power was out for 7 days. We had a generator that ran the well so we could get water and run a couple of lights or fans. What I remember the most was the lack of gas, milk and ice. We needed gas to run the generator and got ice at the fire station where my son worked. I live in the northeast now and we never hear about hurricanes that are forming off the coast of Africa and even if we did, we wouldn't care. But my thoughts are with my friends in the south. I hope they all miss you this time.

Space Shuttle Launch

Today the space shuttle Atlantis will blast into space for a dangerous mission. It's always dangerous to fly into space, but this time the astronauts will have to maneuver past obstacles to get to the Hubble telescope to do maintenance. It's one of the things I miss about living in central Florida. Watching a launch from my driveway! Living in Florida has it's advantages and one is the opportunity to see history made with each shuttle launch. It got me thinking about the infamous Challenger explosion and got me praying that this one will go well. At the time of the Challenger launch that was taking our first teacher, Christa McCauliffe, into space, I was living in a little house about 15 miles from the east coast of Florida and me and my family liked to watch the count down on television- just to make sure it went okay- and then run outside to the driveway or road and watch for the Shuttle to appear above the treeline as a bright, glowing ball of fire. We'd watch it go up and up leaving a fat contrail and if the weather was clear, we could see the rocket boosters drop off. How cool!! But the next part was even more fun. Once the shuttle was out of sight, we could hear the rumble approaching. It took a good 5 minutes I'd say until that ground shaking reached my home and rattled my windows, but it was the most exciting part I think! In January 1986, my 3 year old and I kept waiting for word that Challenger was going, but NASA kept announcing delays as I recall, so I had to leave and head to the grocery store. After all, maybe it wouldn't go up that day because of the cold and I had errands to run. After grocery shopping at the local Winn Dixie in Deltona, I remember walking out into the parking lot and people were standing together near their cars listening to the radios and many were trying to look to the sky (there was not a clear view to the East from that parking lot) and someone told me that the Shuttle had exploded. I threw my groceries into the car and turned on my own radio and headed home listening to the horrible news. I'll never forget driving down Doyle Road toward home and seeing the lines of smoke criss-crossing crazily all over the sky and knowing that something had gone horribly wrong. Anyone who regularly watch a lift off would have known that this sight in the sky was not right. It was a very sad day and I felt especially bad for the kids in NH who were eagerly watching their teacher, Christa McCauliffe, head off into space. Now I live in New Hampshire and next week I will accompany my 5th grader on a field trip to the planetarium in Concord, NH which was named for Christa McCauliffe. Years after the explosion, I was able to go to Cape Canaveral and see a launch up close that was so spectacular and breathtaking. Shuttle launches are not advertised and spoken of as much up here in the northeastern US, and I miss the coverage and watching the countdown and of course watching the launches with my kids. Go here for more info and watch the up to the minute countdown: Kennedy Space Center Countdown to Launch