Archive for the ‘Third Month Cedar Key – March 2012’ Category

ON OUR WAY HOME


Sunrise on Departure Day, Cedar Key Back Bayou

This was the view on the morning of our departure…..sweet, eh?

And This was the view on the evening of our arrival home …. equally sweet!

Flowering Crab Apple Tree over our Patio

And in just a couple days of arriving home, the sweet snow of petals began to fall.  It is an annual tradition we love. And the blossoms on the street are inspiring.

Walking the dog with Bowers of Flowers overhead is a fairytale treat.

SPRING is a ridiculously sumptuous season in Bucks County!

Ferry Street Cherry and Apple Trees in Blossom 2012

But our road trip home was equally fascinating.

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By the time we hit the road on April 9th, we only had about 5 hours to get somewheres to sleep.

So we headed straight up 24, through Gainsville and onto 301 toward Jacksonville, where the traffic got heavier and heavier.  When it came time to join the mad-mad world on the BLUE INTERSTATE HIGHWAYS, we opted to continue on the RED-LINE ROUTE 301 which paralleled the interstate, winding up into Georgia, with the OKFENOKEE Swamp not far off on our left.  We were headed for Statesbooro for our night’s rest. It is north and west of Savannah GA, and almost due west of Beaufort SC.

I didn’t feel much like taking pictures that day and I’m sorry for it  – because the old restaurants and motels lining 301 were 50’s and 60’s relics.  Someone should do a documentary of it. Like Route 66!  Georgia has untouched history lining those RED RIBBON Roads – and aside from slowing down for the occasional, interesting towns….. the road is empty and the speed limit is 60. It was such a great alternative to BLUE SPEEDWAYS that suck your energy and civility.

But on the 10th I began shooting from the truck, when we came upon a JUKE JOINT  – which I think was in South Carolina — but I’m not sure.

Our eyes were pulled by a collection of cement structures - and this arrow!

We were cruising up 301, through Sylvania, GA and into South Carolina, through Allendale and ULMER, where we hung a left onto 321, heading north toward OLAR and DENMARK …. Somewhere in there, we saw a collection of odd cement structures and had to turn around to check it out.

JUKE JOINT in the middle of South Carolina? Ulmer?

THE GUEST HOUSE was the main structure and it sure looked like a Juke Joint to us! Open Thurs-Fri and Sat — out in the middle of nowhere – Can we get a witness?

Wish it were open!

One of several odd cement structures on the property.

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Cruising North on 321 in South Carolina, heading toward Columbia

We stopped for lunch around 2pm, north of Columbia SC….

We’d been traveling through many small towns – some on the down low and others still quite nice. John observed how these towns would be prefect for Baby boomers who can’t retire – but can create businesses in these small towns where life is still kind and nice.  He also prophesied a bike path on these roads — with its beautiful scenery, architecture, a RR track paralleling the road for pack transport – it could be the new Adirondack Trail for the Biking and Running Crowd — and stimulate business and town revivals.

WHY should we let big business dictate our lives and drive us mad in the process?

Back to Lunch:  We stopped in CHESTER SC. This is a very cool town in the middle of 321 between Columbia SC and Charlotte NC.

I love old painted wall signage.

Love Tudor Houses (because I grew up in one!!)

Chester, South Carolina? One of several streets with great building infrastructure.

I mention it because it was a town of strong architecture with many buildings and a  county seat as well. =============

While it looked a little underustilized, the size of it indicated it was THE PLACE TO BE  in its hayday and it still has a cool funkyness, as represented in the restaurant/bar made out of the old Five and Dime.  Chester felt like a place Artists would love to live and revive.  Maybe it’s doing just fine on its own, but it had a great vibe – is all I’m saying. .

Ladies Lounge at the Five and Dime Restaurant

An appropriate sentiment outside a wine shop

Interior area of the Five and Dime Restaurant (one of many spots)

The Card Table in the Bar of the Five and Dime Restaurant

Another Tudor...

Leaving town after lunch - we were snookered by the old gas price sign. (sigh)

Chester County Court

Culture Signpost.

A factory Building Windows

LAST STOP PARTY SHOP! Oh My!

On the windy road into North Carolina

Heading into the Mountains of Virginia

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After a long drive on Tuesday, we arrived in Middlebrook Va, John’s daughter’s home and grandkids Zach and Sarah.  We pretty much ate and went to bed. Nice to see them, briefly, and nice to see the yellow rolling spring hills surrounding their home.

Rolling Hills filled with Yellow Flowers in Middlebrook, VA

Love yellow flowered hills.

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But we were most driven to get home ourselves because Bucks had been exhibiting a steep decline in Florida. We’d even made an appointment for his passing at the end of the week.

But to our surprise and delight, once he got home, he rallied – with more energy than he’d had in a month. Maybe it was the cool spring air  – and the familiar smells of his life -but he has been up and about in all the regular walks.  It’s been grand to see.

Bucks on the walk at Washington Crossing Park

Bucks by the Delaware

The Dog Pack and People at the Park

Bucks Sampling the Canal Water

We brought bucks down to our creekside garden - he enjoyed the sniff and the campfire we had, later in the evening.

View of our crabapple from the patio

Petal Snow on the Patio - a once a year event! Glad we didn't miss it.

=================One last note….

When I arrived home – I walked into a mess of a house – because our hot water heater had blown – and been replaced, thankfully, by a friend – but the house had not been cleaned and was disheveled.  It caused me to say “Half of everything in this house is going” and I promptly set to it, quickly building up a pile on the patio – headed for a sale table at the Lambertville Flea market soon.

This is my now streamlined Dining Room.  I’m happily writing at the same table and salute and thank you for going on this journey with us.

Cleaned up Dining Room. Ahhhh.

The journey will continue…. To VA for a graduation …. To CA for friends and family visits …. and elsewhere undetermined just as yet…. after a small break to get our home in order.

xoxoxo,

Laura

Flowers....for you!

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Painted Bunting


After clearing the backyard concrete slab of the table and chairs,

Bucks took up a respite. Spying him through the kitchen window, I thought he deserved a snap.

Cleared Back Yard -- Cool slab for Bucks to rest

But as I shot, suddenly I noticed the PAINTED BUNTING Bird arrived on the feeder –

Painted Bunting on left side of Feeder

and with a window between us, I could shoot as fast as my camera allowed.

There is a pair of these PAINTED BUNTINGS in our area.

The most colorful male has been with us for a month, slipping into the feeder when the other birds had finished,

But never when I had a camera near.

Gorgeous Creatures. Lucky Shots.

Glad I followed the whisper to shoot Bucks on his cement block repose.

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PAINTED BUNTING:

ROYAL HEAD OF BLUE

WITH REGAL BREAST OF RED

AND LIME GREEN CAPE,

PECKS NERVOUSLY AT THE FEEDER,

ALONE,

WHILE IN THE BRANCHES OVERHEAD

RED-WINGED BLACKBIRDS SING AND CACKLE:

HAIL TO THE KING!

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Departing Moon Shots from our Neighbors Deck.

I must say I love a sunrise view …. because it also includes the moon rise.

WRAPPING UP – PREPPING TO GO


It is our last week in Cedar Key.

Our house is a mess with piles of this and that, collected to be packed.

Will we need to ship things home? We are not yet sure. 

But it didn’t stop us from going FISHING on a PONTOON boat on Tuesday.

Check out my goofy Sunglasses -a gift from John on a Caribbean vacation

Off we go, for our last day of fishing at CK

The pontoon is better for John’s back and it was quite comfortable.  But the fishing – not as auspicious as the day – clear, bright, windless – but the fishing was not HOT!  We brought along our friend Lonna (her hubby, Martin, has to work). We fished around North Key most of the time — some fun action in the first spot – but no keepers….

Trout, catfish, pinfish (good for bait), blowfish, stingray  and Lady Fish – who always seem to flip themselves off before they reach the boat (good thing b/c they are reported to defecate and flip all over the boat, making it a mess. ) John had a little mackerel action (but it got away) and Lonna has some big flash on the hook for a minute but . . . .

Lonna's first catch. All our fish were just UNDER the legal limit - drat!

Pin Fish - good bait, we are told

Blown Up Blow Fish - with TEETH

Lady Fish - but she's no lady!

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Shooing the Stingray back into the sea

Maybe no fish - but he caught some rays

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Back of the Boat fishing Mates

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Cloud Tower over Cedar Key

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Nice Shot Near Shore....

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One thing our guide yesterday said perked our ears — “The best fishermen in the area fish with jigs – not bait.” Those were music to John’s ears. He hates the bobber/live bait sitting on the bottom, waiting for a bite – which really leads to the small, unkeepable fish.  Any bigger fish trolling through is not going to stop at that small shrimp and say “Oh, Hey, What a Surprise!” No, those desired fish are going to grab at an unexpected  flash of a jig – jigging by – and snatch it.  But we haven’t found that guide yet. Next Trip? 

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Who we really want is our fisher friend John Pascoe –

John Pascoe - Fisherman Extra Ordinaire

who has the nose and adventure for finding the fishing holes.  We look forward to seeing him and fishing with him soon in New Hope.

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Over the past weeks we’ve had a few other wonderful adventures and events arise..

From airboating . . .

Brand New Airboat in the Area. A beaut

Laura, Capt Heath, Suzanne

Ready, Set, LET'S GO!

Johnny - With Wind in His Hair!

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"This IS FUN!" Suzanne w/Jeff right behind her

Driving Toward the Sunset

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Captain Heath sharing the story of the Battle at Fort Four

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Sunset over Bridge Four -- which got it's name from the Battle Heath told us about.

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.Then we had a second visit from Laura and Don

Don and Laura under the tent in the Backyard, sharing a meal.

Laura and her Birthday gift - a hand made neck scarf with her Great Aunt Bid's beads sewn to the ends.

and their Sarasota Friends Susan and Faru … who instantly took to the beauty of Cedar Key.

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I cooked a pork shoulder all day on Friday to create pulled pork.  Made a video of the process too but haven’t yet edited it.

Pork cooking in cast iron pot on the cowboy cooker! Last big feast - came out delicious.

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We tried to go boating on Sat. but the weather was awful.

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A brave face on a cold, wet boating attempt

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Capt Pat Bonish - "will someone call this thing off, please?!!"

It crushed our party (PREVIOUS POST: Rain Party).  But we hailed hearty and the night and Sunday worked out great – with a good boat tour with Pat Bonish – a terrific photographer and manager of the very cool LOW KEY MOTEL.

Sunny Day on the Boat with Susan and Faru

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Laura Loves Boats!

Susan got lost in the wilderness beauty

Pontoon Leisure at North Key

Susan is set free!

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Faru checks his GPS to see where he is at (!) as Don enjoys where he is at!

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Later in the week, we spent an afternoon at the WACCASSASA RIVER, where friends are building a home.

A natural wilderness still exists along the Waccassasa River

 

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John got up in the deerstand to snap this picture by the river

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Big Red by the Waccassasa River

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The home of our friends, under construction

Water Reflections

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Then there was a final dinner with Jeff and Suzanne at the ISLAND ROOM where we dined outside.  They have become very good friends – and it has been terrific to share Cedar Key with them and their daughter, Lauren, who lives in Gainsville. ….

John, Suzanne, Laura and Jeff - a final group picture!

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Suzanne and Jeff with Chef and Owner: Peter

They gave us CLAW LIGHTERS - as a going away gift. FUN!

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Day is done but the friendship goes on

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In the past week, we’ve been enjoying the Blooming Oleander trees at our neighbors…. and all over town.

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The Hibiscus has been blooming all winter

Oleander Lane!

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And a last supper with Lonna and Martin on their deck….

View from Martin and Lonna's deck

Wonderful Views....accompanied by Sand Gnats "Ouch" Slap, Rub! But soooo beautiful to look at.

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Me and Maaaatin!

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We had BUCKS Join the party, once it cooled off!

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A lovely table on the Deck

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…But most recently we’ve been consumed by three events.

1. A job that opened with the Cedar Key Arts Center and Festival – which I interviewed for, was offered, but turned down, because I realized, after the interview, I would be consumed with the job and thwart what I came to CK for in the first place: our own creative work.  They understood and have secured a terrific person for their plans.  Good all around.

My Job Interview Outfit --New Dress from the Mad Men Collection at ?? I don't know my stores....but it was in the MALL (yikes) Love the dress - with pockets!!

 

2.  Our dog Bucks, who had a new symptom arise – difficulty to get a breathe.  He has been drawing rough breaths in rapid succession.

Dr. Sammy, who gave Bucks an excellent exam.

Vet said it was the weakening of the muscles in his throat that close when he eats/drinks … and they are not fully opening.

Daisy Paw and Bucks Paw.....on night on the rug.

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..He put Bucks on Prednizone – which has calmed down the inflammation but increased the peeing — in the middle of the night – so not much sleeping going on.

We are  now focused on getting him home –

so he can RIP with his brother in our garden.  There have been a few blubberfests on this matter – and discord between John and I as to what was happening and how to deal with it …. until we found our mutual desire to have Bucks resting in New Hope – not any where else. So, despite the Easter Holiday, we may take off early to get him home. 

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.Last night, Shari (an Artist from NYC who is quite a character)

Shari - our hostess - and artist - I crave her flower stained Glass

cooked us a delicious meal of Shrimp Scampi and her friend Peter (a muscian, writer, activist soul) joined the party. 

The Flower Stained Glass I crave

Shari had been trying to connect Peter and us for a while now and I’m glad she did. He is a most interesting soul – following his heart code through and through – and had so many curious stories about his life,  which leads to a story about a WWII mission and the pilots involved, which leads to the investigation of what happened in the gulf and some chemical substance that was sprayed to sink the oil to the bottom – a substance that is illegal in 19 countries but not in the USA) – and how he was exposed to it heavily b/c he was sleeping out on the islands at that time and began bleeding from the lungs – and how many in CK got a respitory inflammation that hung on for months – and how the people in Louisiana were really doused by it and are dying, quickly.   That’s what he told us. 

Shari's Garden / Art Gallery

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Peter and John Mind Meld

.Along with the assertion that when new Oil Wells were approved recently – BP got the first one.   And how they won’t show the well head – and …the chemical they sprayed has circulated the earth through the currents and…the fish are coming out with lesions … and….every one has been bought off – in the Government … for the benefit of big oil.

It made me wonder: Where can one go?  Is our only option to chose a place or places that please us?….. And have a back up plan for getting off this planet when it gets untenable?  

Kurt Vonnegut wrote in SLAUGHTERHOUSE FIVE: “The secret of life is to forget the bad and concentrate on the good.”  

I agree.  Sometimes that feels like being Pollyanna.  But what other choice do we have?  Be consumed by anger?  Flailing Don Quixote-style at a monolith of corporations who control our lives? Perhaps Ignorance IS Bliss.

I don’t know what the answer is. But maybe the serenity prayer is the only one to go by: Grant me the serenity to change the things I can, accept the things I can’t and the wisdom to know the difference.

My cousin Dee said to me the other day – “You don’t yet know how much this trip has impacted you – and you won’t until you’ve gotten home for a while”   She is so right. And thus, I must now take my leave of this blog until we do return home….”for I have promises to keep and miles to go before I sleep …and miles to go before I sleep” (Robert Frost)

Be well and send me your thoughts on all this. Would really like to hear how YOU think about these issue – either as a comment on the blog or an email: http://www.lauramatsonhahn@gmail.com

Thanks for coming along on this ride.  And, CONVERSATION FARM will continue….as we continue to explore the adventure of our lives.

I leave you with a few, happy, parting shots.

Paddling the Back Bay of Cedar Key

xoxo  Laura

Like the true snowbirds, the White Pelicans have gathered and flown the Coop

Heading to our Bridge in New Hope, PA .... for some more Lovely Days!

RAIN PARTY


Sat Night – we’d planned a feast – our last one for this trip –

Johnny in the kitchen

It began with Laura and Don and Susan and Faru – all from Sarasota (COUNT 6) – and then it kept growing to include Jeff and Suzanne from Indiana (they are leaving Tuesday) and their daughter Lauren and her sweetheart Andrew,  (COUNT 10) and of course we had to invite our neighbors Lonna and Martin (COUNT 12) and Shari from NY and Jean, our other neighbor, and if Linda and Chris got back in time…. (COUNT 16!).

Well, What the Heck!  We certainly had enough food: We were going to serve oysters (Fresh Shucked, Steamed, Roasted) and Pulled Pork (which I cooked all day, outdoors on the cowboy cooker on Thursday) and Spare Ribs (marinated for two days) and Chicken (also marinated and baked)
And everyone was helping with Coleslaw(Lonna) Decorations (Lauren) Dessert (Suzanne) and Wine and Beer (Laura, Don, Jeff, Susan, Faru)

Everything was going nicely – the pork was pulled and seasoned, the garden looked lovely with extra tables and chairs and tablecloths and flowers and stations for shucking and drinks and yacking —

John shopped for candles and rope lighting to illuminate inside the shade tent and it looked lovely — Sure there had been some rain throughout the day but nothing major.  Thunder rumbles and a shower here and there….

And then it hit!  Hurricane Rain – just before 7 – when everyone was to arrive.

Hurricane Rain

Sheets and Sheets of it – obliterating the view, sweeping rivers down the street… and eventually the tent, too  = crumpled by wind and crushed by water.

As the rain began

CRUMPLED TENT

CRUSHED TENT

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It was a long, hard  rain with no break between the drops – just one long strand of unending water. GPS’s were refreshed minute by minute – how long would it last? would there be a break to dash to the car or the house? When was the next cell going to hit?

In the middle of it all, the guest arrived – sprinting across the flooding backyard with trays of tarts in one hand and the umbrella in the other.

Let me in, let me in!

Holy Cow!

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Daisy Greeting Suzanne

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Laughter reigned too, as each person pushed innto the small front porch, shaking off the water and entering the house.

What else was there to do?  Sure the  Coats, Shoes, Shirts were Soaked. But a mop of a towel and a refreshment in hand and some noshes on the table, and we were good to go.

Reconfigured DR Table opened up the room - chairs scattered against the wall

The Living & Dining area had already been re-arranged to accommodate the party indoors.  Not ideal, but doable.

Susan and Faru enjoy a nosh on a clam dip and a salsa dip

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Lauren and Mom Suzanne look Great! Despite the torrents.

Laura Pearson looking for wine "Oh stop wining!" "NO!"

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Lauren and sweetheart Andrew (such a great couple!)

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Then it ended. The curtain – the solid wall of water – moved past and left us cool, fresh air and a mess in the backyard.

Tent Uprighted - no one touch it or blow on it!

Maaaaah-tin - a great friend, neighbor, man

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Martin and I investigated the tent and began bailing water out of it, hoping it would stand erect when we pulled it back up.  It Did!  A bit wobbly and battered but standing!

John bravely plugged the lights in .  Viola!  Illumination.

What about a fire?  Could we get one going? Yes, again, thanks to Faru and Martin, – who went home, got a board and a vice grip, and attached the board over the cowboy cooker in event of future rain….which was forecasted by the GPS — another cell coming our way in about 20 minutes.  We paid no mind to that matter.

It Is FIRE!

Wipe Down and Re-set up! Let's do it!

John got out more towels (thank heavens Tom and Boyd have such a well stocked place) and wiped down the tables and chairs, lit the candles and we were in business!

All we needed were the oysters by the shed – which Don and Faru had to cross a river to get!.

The water sat on the sand like a pond and then – suddenly – disappeared.

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I began shucking oysters(which was supposed to be over and done with an hour previously) as the fire was gathering strength. to steam the oysters open.

Lauren – what a trooper – grabbed another knife and shucks away too. EEE GOD, we have a bushel of oysters!!!

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220 OYSTERS in a BUSHEL (now you know)

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.At a certain point, I suddenly felt pain in my haunches from standing, hunched over the oysters, and had to sit down.

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Laura P heating up the pulled pork! LifeSaver!

That was around 8:30, as John remembers, and Laura Pearson stepped in, pulling together the rest of the meal and getting all hands on deck to get it served – outside – the second rain had skirted us – under the tent – and it was done.

Laura, Don, Faru and Susan (sort of) Finally eating dinner!

We ate, drank, talked, shared, laughed, and appreciated the beautiful night around loaned tables and chairs, in glowing candlelight.

It was good. . . . . .

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Lonna - who made a delicious coleslaw - family recipe

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Mom and Daughter - extraordinary!

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Artist Shari! Delightful conversationalist

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Bucks keep an ear on the party just inside the back door.

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Dessert Time! Key Lime and Cherry Cream Tarts from the Island Girl Cake shop. YUMM!

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TARTS!

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Daisy gets a manicure (or would that be pedicure?)

Saited and Seated

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Lauren and Andrew

Jolly Jeffrey

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.We didn’t eat half the oyster … and I have a large casserole of pulled pork and half as much chicken still … but because everyone pitched in, the kitchen wasn’t a disaster and John and I silently worked to pull it together before we collapsed at midnight.

John always does more on the clean up than me, always. Bless him.

I’m glad we did it but just for the record: I’m never doing it again!  ; >

Ahhh - now to bed!

BEACH BLANKET BINGO!


Seyfert Dock on Rye Key --- loading up the boats.

We were invited to a BEACH PARTY last Saturday. . . .

On NORTH KEY — The Seyfert’s were hosting a party for a friend’s daughter, and nearly all the kids from the cedar key H.S. came – it’s a small HS.

People, Food and Equipment were loaded up on the boat and off we zoomed to a day that felt reminiscent of our own youthful beach days….and the movie BEACH BLANKET BINGO or some other Gidget film.  Just pictures for you to enjoy!  We sure did!

xoxo Laura

Nearly all of Cedar Key HS is present!

Daisy came along for the adventure!

Of course they brought a weber and a gas grill, too!

Varooooom! three or four boats of people and stuff, off to North Key

Some enchanted Island.....

A stretch of soft sand, cool clean sea and....

Supplies for the day's lounge!

Our Hosts - Linda and Chris Seyfert

Girls just want to have fun.....waiting their turn!

The lay of the land

Lamar! Grew up on Cedar Key, married a HS sweetheart, raising kids on Cedar Key. Such a sweet life.

Linda Seyfert and My Honney

John hangs with the boys....after hanging with the girls.

New Girlfriends - Linda and Laura!

Sweet Heidi - who we met the day before up at Fowlers Bluff Treasure cove restaurant! It's a small world in CK

Dog Heaven

Teenage Girls are the same, everywhere

oo-ooo I got a text! Really?

And the beat goes on.....

Remember when we had those bodies???

This is called a Bird Dog boat - used for clamming, where you can throw the clams up on the back of the boat.

This Boat is called a Carolina Skiff

The other side of NORTH KEY is full of driftwood. Looking forward to seeing it someday!

John and Jenice (Ja-neice)

Julie is Lamar's HS sweetheart, wife and mother of his children!

The two little kids are Heidi's twins! What a way to grow up!!

Just another day in paradise

Kathy - the mother of the teenager for whom the party was thrown! A spirited woman!

THANK YOU, LINDA, for the party and the experience and the friendship! We are very lucky to know you.

FASHION SHOW!


Welcome to the Fashion Show!

HI YA’LL! And WELCOME to the Cedar Key Women’s Club Annual Fashion Show!

Each year the group of 50 women come up with a theme for their annual fundraiser and team up with Nancy, the owner of DEJA VU Consignment shop, to create a hootenany of a fashion show.

This years theme: Red White and Blue Patriotic and the Barbie on each table displayed that spirit.

Previous Years Themes were based on songs — ie: “She’s a Brick House”

Deja Vu owner Nancy then selects pieces from the shop and creates ensembles– and writes the detailed descriptions about what they are made of and where they can be worn, right down to the style of buttons!

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But before the show starts there is more…..much, much more.

Cool Program Cover - See the Shoe Woman?

Dessert Table! All Home Made and Delicious

The Luncheon isn’t served until noon – but the doors open at 10:30….giving ample time to shop the vendors, lining the walls of the room…. to meet and greet and salivate over the dessert table.

This year they also celebrated the fact that two of the original founding members (back in the 1960’s) were in attendance – one at our table!  It just warmed my heart – and everyone elses, too.

One of the two original founding members of the CK women's club

My new friend Jean (R)-- we both showed up to everything...(including the opening of an envelope) ... she is such a dear.

Two Local Artists: Sandy Allen (L:Painting) and Ann Kamzel (R-Photography)

My new friend Suzanne Kreible! She brought me to this event.

Suzanne and I cruised the vendors and picked up some wonderful cards (great local pics of area wildlife ) and necklaces – new and vintage!

Hand Made Lighthouse votive candle illuminators

For the most part, we caught up with each other on recent explorations and enjoyed watching every aspect of Cedar Key society unfold before our eyes.

Jackie (from Boulder) and Connie (CK Artist, full time resident). Two more lovely ladies of CK

Ladies at our table catching up on the news and laughs

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Cindy - who was in my jewelry remaking class!

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This is Ginnah - she is a published author of Night Navigation - beautifully written book (on a very challenging subject of a son's drug addiction)

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Then Miss Tacky showed up..

Who is that? Miss Tacky?

Bursting through the doors, blowing her whistle to get our attention, Miss Tacky was dressed in every kind of crazy get up with a mouth to match – she was just the foil an event like this needs, and I was told she does it every year.  Winding around the tables, showing off her different fashions and  bantering with the club President, she  illuminated the good works of the Womens Club.  Miss Tacky was delightfully entertaining and instrumental. I admire people who can do that – be the court clown, jester, entertainer and deliver all the key information to the crowd in a package of fun.

Miss Tacky Tourist Arrives!

Women's Club President (don't know her name but what a lovely, friendly face - and nice hat!)

Yo! Miss Tacky -- Pose for a snap!

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So then Miss Tacky announces the 50-50 game and everyone who wants to play waves a dollar in the air – which she collected.

Iola Russell waving her dollar for the 50-50 drawing

Then all the participants stood up for the quarter toss — you put your hands on your head or your tail before it was tossed – and the losing side sat down and it was repeated again and again until there were only 2 -and finally one – winner – who split the pot with the club (Laura Beckham won and donated it back).

Heads or Tails - Choose One!

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Then there were the raffle drawings …. and the door prizes linked with the hand written number on the back of each program.

Then there was the $500 drawing – which the police chief came to make the draw —

Police Chief: And the $500 Winner is!

Somewhere in there was the luncheon – we walked up to the counter to pick up a nice plate of homemade chicken salad, pasta, greens and a croissant along with some dessert goodies.

Finally – it was time for the fashion show!.

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As the club president described the fashion, every age and style was presented, to the delight of all: Take a look! xo Laura

Sarah actually bought the dress at Deja Vu and altered it - she also found the gorgeous kid gloves there, too!

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Suzanne's daughter had recently dropped off two hampers full of clothes to the shop -and her belt and shoes were used in this ensemble

This woman loves to swim....and it shows!! ooo la la

The young woman who won the Women's Club scholarship the previous year.

Matching with your dog in a donna karan!

All ages attended and inspected the fashions

Red Bermuda Shorts - aplomb!

Snappy Green Savvy

Oh, just a little something for going to the Post Office - where you meet everyone!

A whole family was in the show 4 kids and a mom!

Patriotic March!

Everyone was on their feet and singing and waving their flags! whew, the room was full of emotion!

So here I am at my first CK fashion show, sporting a rocking outfit - and just so ya know: both my silk skirt and bandolino heels were purchased at consignment/thrift shops!

QUILTS-CRABCAKES-HORSESHOES and FRIENDS


As we settle into our third month on Cedar Key, we feel a nice groove.

Life here is not about prestige or status or presumption. It is not about showing off but rather – showing up.  Waving to each other (even those you don’t know), being polite, kind, interested as well as being interesting to others. That does not preclude big personalities but it isn’t for the Donald Trumps of the world, the corporate heads of state who can’t shuck off their own self importance.  No one really cares about the exterior here.  Its the interior that counts – truth, courage, openness, curiosity, creativity, love.

We went out with a Realtor yesterday – to satisfy the gnawing what-if we’ve been carrying around. Caryn was terrific. She showed us the properties we asked to see and a few others…. it really got us thinking as to how we’d design our own space. Turns out, the “take our breath away” large, beautifully constructed house that had everything does not fit the bill.

View of Dock from the Wow House on the Gulf

Not for how we live. I got to laughing when John brought up Daisy’s needs –How she’d cock her ears to ask: “what’s up with this? where am I supposed to run in this house on stilts and a yard full of oysterbeds that cut my paws? Where’s my neighborhood to run around and check things out???” We also talked about what kind of space each of us would want if the other passed on- and again, the big house failed the test.

View of the Dock of the one I believe I would really love.

I think I know which house I want and what I’d do to it to customize it to our needs…..more on that later.

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.As part of getting to knowing Cedar Key, we have been exploring the surrounding towns. Last weekend we visited TRENTON – an old town that still looks like they could film the MUSIC MAN in it.

Picking and a grinning

The Standard Gas Station pumps were still set to 33 cents a gallon!!

33 cents a gallon -- the gas, not the girl!

Stone Church, Trenton FL

The Stone church looks positively Moorish.

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Down Town Trenton FL

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..The Old Train Depot looks ready for a bustling business….absent the train tracks (now isn’t that a shame on us – taking up all the train tracks that used to connect nowhere to everywhere in these United States – we are some boorish people!)

Train Depot Interior

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Paging Mike Malamut - They have a building to go with their old cars!!

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Produce shop - displayed like it would have been in the early 1900's....time out of time.

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Get chur tomatoes and quilts right here!

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So THAT'S what you do with old thimbles!!

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.We were there for a Quilt show and quite a show it was.

John's favorite Colors - orange and blue

I love this one!

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We both loved these fun frogs

One for the menfolk!

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Love this asian branch one

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Beautiful icons of nature and wildlife - $2400!!

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.One woman told us she was quite skeptical about learning how to quilt but after her first lesson, she was hooked.  Maybe there is something in the water.

This is what happens to people in Trenton - quilt fever!

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Browns and blue=greens and circles -- so soothing yet hip!

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There were also displays of stuff – including a room set up for a Tea scheduled for March 17th – and Tractors!  John has fond memories of his grandparent’s farm in Michigan where he learned to drive the tractor – and drink a beer with lunch – very young!

"Here's to the Ladies who Lunch - Everybody Laughs" Soundheim

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Now I just LOVE this image.

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Tractor Boy

The words say it all!

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On Friday, before our Trenton trip, we canoed all day — tried to fish (not the right bait) and caught some nice snaps of birds.

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The taller orange beaked birds are American Oystercatchers and the shorter ones, with half orange beak are Black Skimmers

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"too close - too close - they are getting too close"

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..That night, we we picked up some crabs and made a fire and boiled the crabs outside – so much less cleanup – and had a feast for two.

But there was a lot of left over crab – so I invited Lonna and Martin over for crabcake lunch on Sunday.

Crabcakes, Coleslaw and Fruit - with Bloody Mary First Course!

Lonna and Martin Dickenson - our neighbors and new friends

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..Later that day, we popped over to the beach where we found Suzanne and Jeffrey and their daughter Lauren —

Jeffrey and John and the dogs - Daisy, Bucks and Coal!

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Horseshoe crabs flipped over by the incoming tide

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Bucks standing off Coal (who is only 2 and loves buckaroo)

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Breeding, Beached Horseshoe Crabs

Lauren, Jeff's daughter, was so great with the dogs, especially Bucks

– This is the action video of bucks and coal.

The day was turning from sunny to cloudy and eventually rainy – but we are so glad we went as the Horseshoe crabs had arrived and were mating on the beach.

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awwwww

They told us they had counted 270 on Saturday.  Not that many on Sunday but quite a few.  They mate on the shores every March – laying their eggs and crawling back to sea.  Very cool to see.

TODAY is the FASHION SHOW Benefit for something or other — but the hoot is the fashions are coming from the DEJA VU consignment Shop!!  Hee haw, life is fun here!

xoxo Laura

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