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Sailors' Valentines

The Basics of Shell Collecting

The Basics of Shell Collecting 500 333 adminvictoria

Sandy beaches and warm weather have attracted people to the ocean for centuries. While many flock to activities like surfing, swimming, snorkeling and scuba diving, just as many are drawn to a favorite pastime of all ages: collecting seashells. Shell collecting is defined as the practice of finding and identifying mollusk shells. It’s a hobby…

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The Fancy Shell Shoppe in Sanibel Island, Florida

The Fancy Shell Shoppe in Sanibel Island, Florida 1024 683 adminvictoria

My Dear Angel, You couldn’t know what’s been hidden for so long in my heart. Nor will you read this sentimental letter or the silly poem that I shall attach. Instead, I will place them in the desk drawer along with many others I have written to you since you first cast a spell over…

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magical realism

The History of Sanibel Island

The History of Sanibel Island 1024 685 adminvictoria

Sanibel Island is a magical place known for its exquisite beaches and an abundance of seashells that wash ashore from the Gulf of Mexico. Located in southwest Florida, it’s an extremely popular tourist destination due to easy causeway access, opportunities for shelling and incredible wildlife refuges. The stunning beauty of Sanibel Island makes the perfect…

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Sailors' Valentine

Tilly Kemble & The Saving Grace of Sailors’ Valentines

Tilly Kemble & The Saving Grace of Sailors’ Valentines 500 334 adminvictoria

I was a wreck when I landed in Key West like one of those sailboats smashed on the shore in a hurricane. Ha! Hurricane Tilly, I’d made a mess of my life back in Edgartown. My people worked the shrimp boats, never owned any, just worked them. Even today the sight of shrimp makes me…

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magical realism books

Nature, Antidote to Stress

Nature, Antidote to Stress 1024 683 adminvictoria

By Victoria Foyt In our shifting times of change with polar political ends, rising economic inequality, alarming climate change and the loss of communities, where can we find solace? You might try a yoga class or mindfulness app or even a gourmet marijuana edible to calm your ever-growing anxiety. At best, the re-entry of our…

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Magical realism

The Magic of Seashells

The Magic of Seashells 500 333 adminvictoria

By Victoria Foyt What is it about the power of shells that moves us to collect them? No doubt the souvenir of a pleasant day at the beach or the sheer beauty that some species present entices. And yet, I wonder if in our bones we suspect a shell may hold the awesome power of…

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Sailors' Valentines

The History of Sailors’ Valentines

The History of Sailors’ Valentines 434 393 adminvictoria

Sailors’ Valentines are magical. Their story of origin evokes images of lonely—sometimes lovestruck—sailors passing the hours during long sea voyages by creating these gifts for their loved ones. These painstakingly handcrafted pieces made the perfect gift for sailors’ loved ones when they returned from their journeys. Sailors’ Valentines are a form of shell art that…

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Sailors' Valentines

My Love Affair With Sailors’ Valentines

My Love Affair With Sailors’ Valentines 500 333 srvvsa

I don’t recall the first time I saw a Sailors’ Valentines, but I do remember the feeling. It was like falling in love. First, let me explain that I love handicrafts. In high school, when time was easy, I often sewed pretty clothes and created hand-built ceramic pots. I come from a long line of women who knitted or tatted or embroidered or sewed beautiful things, many of which I still own.

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A Quiet Moment For A Sunrise Tellin

A Quiet Moment For A Sunrise Tellin 800 600 srvvsa

By Victoria Foyt
Seashells represent many things to different people. Throughout history in different cultures, shells have been used as money or ceremonial objects or ornamentation. If you shore off the tip of a Queen conch, you can even use it as a trumpet. Some island cultures have used the makeshift musical instrument to spread news or send urgent warnings.

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