Thursday, January 17, 2013

Sea Shell Memories: Orange Beach, Alabama

During a recent trip to the Gulf of Mexico we were exposed to the most beautiful white sand beaches and an abundance of sea shells!  There was no way my kiddos were not coming home with tons of memories from the beach!

We turned this vacation into a long road trip.  The ultimate goal was to visit a family member that stays her winters on the beach in Orange Beach, Alabama.

How exciting!!!  This was at the visitors center
(border of Kentucky & Tennessee).
It really is all about the beach!!!  Look at how clean everything is!  It was like no other beach that I have been to!

So many shells!!!  Each day there was a fresh supply to dig through!

My kiddos got perfect presents from their grandma :-)

Lots of exploring and exposure to things my kids have never seen in person!

My son - the crab ;-)

Great day to fly a kite!

We even found a few jelly fish!

So much space to get creative!!
Gotta love my kiddos!

Okay, it wasn't great swimming weather (visited over New Years) but I had to let them get wet ;-)

We had to stop at this tourist shop!

I'm not sure why this is hidden but there is a
cool pirate ship in the back parking lot of the shark store....
You can't get on it or in it but it was still cool to check out.
And now for the shells.  First, you must clean these things so they don't stink like salt water and seaweed!  Just put them in a bucket with equal parts of water and bleach (enough to cover the shells).  I let mine soak overnight.  

I swear the sea was teasing me with all the large sand dollar chunks!!!
I didn't find a complete sand dollar but they are common there.
We were only at the beach for two days and never first thing in the morning
(before everything was picked over by others).

Some of our favorites.

Natural holes!!!
So many shells had these so we are going to make some jewelry!
I brought some sand home so I could make these:

The rest went into this:

I will add some pictures of the jewelry once we have had time to work on it.

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