Thursday, November 29, 2007

The long result of time

"Here about the beach I wander'd nourishing a youth sublime
With the fairy tales of science, and the long result of Time."

Alfred Tennyson (1809 - 1892)

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Island Spirit

Home again, home again, jiggidy-jig, and primed for Christmas events here on the island - especially now that my cold is better and I'm no longer talking like Elmer Fudd.

I'm so excited about all the festivities scheduled! If you are planning a visit to the beach during the month of December -- and especially if you are a local -- you must check out the list of events on page five of the current issue of Island Times.

There will be three opportunities for children to attend a free Gingerbread House Make & Take at Tiki Island, located between the Hampton Inn and Sidelines. All you are requested to bring is a bag of hard candies for decoration. From noon til 2:00 p.m. on either December 2, 9, or 16, don't let your children miss an opportunity to create their own gingerbread house. I'll definitely be there on either December 9 or December 16 - just to help the children decorate with spiced gumdrops and red-hots, of course!

There will be photo-ops with Santa at the Hilton on December 2, from 2-4 p.m. and again at the Boardwalk on December 9, from 2 - 4 p.m. And you know I have to show up for a photo with Santa.

The Pensacola Beach Chamber of Commerce invites you to Season Your Holiday with Island Spirit this year. Businesses and homes on the island will be twinkling with enough lights to put a smile on even a Grinch's face, so please come and enjoy the displays in December.

Part of the fun this year is a Passport to Santa's Island. You may stop by any Pensacola Beach Chamber of Commerce member business or the Visitor's Information Center to pick up an empty passport.

When you 'travel' to a participating business, they will stamp your passport. With ten stamps, your passport will be full. Hmm...I could knock off at least five stamps in one afternoon after perusing the list.

Return your fully-stamped passport to the Visitor's Information Center and be eligible for wonderful prizes at a drawing on January 1 after the Polar Bear Plunge. If you are a visitor, not to worry. You do not have to be present to win.

The Grand Prize includes hotel accommodation, dinners, gift certificates and merchandise worth nearly $1000! And I know for sure that one additional prize will be a 27" x 23" framed print of Evening Saunter by Barrier Island Girl.

As you know, I love this island and the people. This is a great way to support local businesses while enjoying time with your family. I'll keep you up-to-date on my blog of holiday events such as an Open House or parades, just in case you forget. Check for photos of the festivities and, if you should see me there -- I'll be the one with the camera and a big smile -- please say hello!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving to all my blog visitors. I am in Arlington, Texas with family and watching snow fall! It has been a lovely treat to see huge snowflakes, but I still prefer my white sandy beach. Luckily the rain and snow should move out of the area by midnight -- just in time for post-Thanksgiving SHOPPING!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Once upon a time

Once upon a time there was a young island girl happily building sandcastles on the beach. Suddenly, to her complete surprise, a shovel of sand came up with a little something extra -- a large sand crab!

The island girl sat back and looked at him. Mr. Crab clackity-clack-clacked up at her with his pinchers, frowning that she had disturbed his afternoon nap under the warm, white sand. He was definitely unhappy to be stuck in a bucket.

The island girl said, "I'm sorry, Mr. Crab. I didn't mean to disturb you."

"Clackity-clack-clack!" he replied.

When the island girl first released Mr. Crab, he decided to hide out on the beach blanket, noting seagulls hovering close above! Unfortunately that didn't work very well, since he stood out like a cherry on top a sundae, so he skittered across to the white sand.

"Goodbye," said the island girl as Mr. Crab quickly buried himself in the sand to finish his afternoon nap with little visible but his protruding eyes.

"Clackity-clack-clack!" said the crab.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Scarlet Milkweed

Who knew Milkweed could look like this?! Not me. I bought two plants for my new butterfly garden and have been happily surprised to find blooms on them in the middle of November. No doing on my part, of course, but I'll certainly baby them over the winter and next spring so that they will be in prime condition for next year's migration of Monarch butterflies over the area.

Saturday, November 17, 2007


"Well, it's not far down to paradise, at least it's not for me
And if the wind is right you can sail away and find tranquility..."

~~ Christopher Cross, "Sailing"

In paradise

Everyone is welcome!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Wild berries

Can someone identify this berry which was growing wild outside Ft. Pickens? As you can see, it is a smooth berry which turns black when ripe; more leggy shrub than vine. It is mildly sweet to taste and only one or two smallish seeds per berry.

And I'm still alive!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007


This photo is dedicated to "Happy Camper", with smiles from "A".

I'm playing the radio host, Delilah, tonight. Remember her? Only instead of a song, I'm dedicating a photograph for someone who needs a special moment of sun and sand and sea. Don't we all need a friend who dedicates something kind and caring to us when we need it.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Veterans Day 2007

We salute our veterans...

and give thanks...

for their sacrifice and courage.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Veterans Parade on Pensacola Beach

A lovely honor today on Pensacola Beach for our veterans.

Cadets in uniform...

and Cub Scouts. All showed respect.

Love the shoes!

"Don't tread on me!"

Motorcycle brigade.

One of our veterans.

A great float at the end of the parade.

Greek Festival of Pensacola

This weekend is the 48th Annual Greek Festival of Pensacola. What began as a dinner in 1959 has turned into an annual fun-filled, three-day event.

This little dancing doll couldn't resist the music and was first on the dance floor.

Kosta Kastanis and his band performed again this year. He can even play his bouzouki (similar to a mandolin), upside-down and backwards while balancing on a chair!

As for dancing, forget Dancing with the Stars. I'd like to see celebrities try to follow the footwork of these Greek dances.

Kosta had my head spinning as his fingers flew!

All worn out.

Hmmm...this should give us a sugar rush!

Or this...

Oh my! Do I dare?

No wonder they dance so much! They have to dance off calories from these fabulous Greek pastries.

Grilling pita bread.

On the menu...Gyros

And if you can't pronounce it, you can just point.

Time to stock up on your olive oil.

A table of sweet bread and biscotti. Some of the specialty items such as this are made by the parishioners themselves.

You still have this afternoon from noon 'til 6:00 p.m. to dance or eat at the Greek Festival. Church tours will also be conducted at 2:00 and 4:00 p.m.

A portion of the proceeds from the festival will be donated to Covenant Hospice of NW Florida.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Sunset on Pensacola Beach

This photo is for my Missouri friends who wondered if the sun was now setting over the Gulf of Mexico again. This is how it looked half an hour ago, Mimi, so you're good to go for those evening walks on the beach while you're here.

In less than two weeks, Mimi's daughter will be getting married on Pensacola Beach. I hope the weather is perfect. According to the digital read-out in my vehicle this afternoon, it was in the upper 70's with only a light breeze.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Tennessee color

I returned from Tennessee last night. I had driven my mother back home after a two-week stay on Pensacola Beach. I thought you might like a glimpse of fall color in McMinnville, Tennessee, my hometown.

As you can see, the maple trees are spectacular. This came as quite a surprise to most people since the area suffered from a drought like most of the southeast this year.

But what a show they are putting on.

Would it surprise you to know the name of the subdivision is Rolling Hills?

This Japanese Maple barely survived a late frost in the spring, but it looks like it may make it if the winter isn't too harsh this year.

More beautiful maple trees in the neighborhood.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

The Lighthouse

This photo of the Pensacola Lighthouse was taken two weeks ago.
Don't forget that this is the Blue Angels Homecoming weekend. They will be performing today and tomorrow. It would also be a good time to visit Barrancas National Cemetery at the Naval Air Station and swing by the Lighthouse. Unfortunately the lighthouse is open for tours only on Sundays.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Butterfly bush

Did I mention that I've started building my butterfly garden? Probably several times, but I was so happy that I had one tiny bloom of "Guinevere" last week.

If I'm still blogging in a few years (what happens when my blog space fills up!), you'll eventually see a mature butterfly bush covered with butterflies or hummingbirds!

Tuesday, November 06, 2007


When the wind gets a bit nippy or if we have a few days of rain or if you have visitors, a favorite place to go is the National Museum of Naval Aviation in Pensacola. On average, I probably go there four times a year. If you haven't been there for a while, you will definitely find new exhibits. You may click on the link above to get driving directions, see what is playing in the IMAX, or look at some of the new exhibits.

This sign was posted below a bronze piece dedicated to two brothers which went down on the same ship during WWII.

An upstairs section of the museum is a re-creation of Palafox Street in the 1940's. This small mechanics shop sign was posted next to an old Harley-Davidson motorcycle.

Note the old pin-up girl photos.

A club for the battle-weary offered a drink and a smile from pin-up girls.

Too bad they don't enforce this in parking lots nowadays.

A fifteen minute shower? Ouch!