Bigly Bestest Beach Doggie

@thebiglybestestdoggie: Did you know there are beaches especially for doggies?!? It’s true! I got to go to one on our road trip, and it was so much fun! Look at all this soft sand! And that tasty ocean water! Oops, guess I wasn’t supposed to actually drink that…? Oh well. I had the best time ever at the doggie beach!

Ah, so this is what paradise looks like!

Ah, so this is what paradise looks like!

~Happy Tuesday, friends!~

The Chaos of Crafting

Making memories?

Priceless.

Creating memorabilia from memorable moments?

Pricey.

And time-consuming.

But fun.

And also kind of stressful, come to think of it.

Remember my recent adventure in ocean snatching?

Well, guess what?

I finally did something productive with all those seashells, ocean water, and sand.

My masterpieces are finally done!

What can I say?

My creative streaks ebb and flow.

(Just like the tides of an ocean!)

It took me a few weeks to envision exactly what I wanted to create with all my awesome ocean loot.

All I knew was that I wanted to recreate a beach scene.

But how, exactly?

I’ve got my very own tropical island oasis right here at home, with a beachy island-themed office room that I’d designed myself.

Complete with an inflatable palm tree.

Yet, figuring out the best way to recreate the ocean at home with real ocean parts is no small feat.

Don’t get me wrong.

I love crafting.

I love making memories.

And I especially love the beach.

It’s a dangerous combination.

Forget all the money spent on the vacation itself…

If you truly want to preserve your memories, you’d best be prepared to shell out even more money with a trip to Hobby Lobby.

But first, let’s talk about glue.

One year, my brother gave my boys a cool sock puppet kit for Christmas.

But there was an awful lot of sewing involved to assemble and accessorize those puppets, and I am not a big fan of sewing.

Why sew when super glue is so much faster?

As glue oozed like a spewing volcano out of the tube, I discovered the sock puppet had become glued shut.

With my hand still inside.

Glue and I clearly have a complicated history.

And so there were all these little factors I had to take into account for my ocean project.

Like how to glue sand and seashells without having shells permanently attached to my fingertips.

And how to ensure ample air ventilation to avoid passing out from toxic glue fumes.

At any rate…

On a burst of creative energy, I was finally ready to turn my collection of goodies from the ocean into a work of art.

Or four.

One combining most of my prized loot into a display:

(A shadow box with a layer of beach sand as the backdrop for my Atlantic seashells, along with a little heart-shaped jar for the ocean water.)

Another for a more sensory-filled experience:

(My little sandy beach jar, with some of the smaller seashells. If sand beneath my feet isn’t an option, then I’ll settle for sand in my hands. Ooh, that rhymes!)

A stress-relief meditation jar:

(No, the glitter and pink water are not from ocean. And it’s also not technically a “jar”. But the seashells on top are indeed from the beach. Besides, it’s something to shake and throttle. What’s not to love?)

And another heart-shaped vial of ocean water:

(Because it seemed wrong to dump the leftover Atlantic Ocean water after all the trouble we went through to collect it. And drinking it just didn’t seem like a very good idea.)

Trying to capture the magnificence of a real beach is damn near impossible.

But if you’re going to steal from the beach, you might as well do something awesome with your loot, right?

Oh, and as for all the glue I used for my projects?

No matter how many times I scrubbed my hands afterward, they were still stickier than a pot of Winnie the Pooh’s honey.

I had to wear cotton socks to bed that night.

On my hands.

Because I was terrified I’d wake up glued to the sheets.

Or somehow stuck to the wall.

Or worse, with my hands permanently attached to my face, like that kid from Home Alone.

Whenever I use glue, I truly seem to have the whole world in my hands.

In the most literal sense possible.

Anyway…

I finally have something to show for my moment of blissful ocean kleptomania!

And yet, I still have 493 pictures from my trip to sort through, organize, and arrange into a scrapbook.

So much for the stress relief of crafting.

Where’s that !&#$ meditation jar when I need it?

~Happy Saturday, friends! Have a great weekend!~

Ocean Commotion

This is a true tale.

A tale of ocean brawling.

Oh, and also of ocean snatching.

But we’ll get back to that in a moment.

It all started ten years ago, on a family vacation to Legoland California.

No trip to a coastal destination is ever complete without visiting the ocean.

At least, not in my opinion.

My then-2 year old son was thoroughly enjoying his second trip ever to the Pacific Ocean, collecting seashells and enjoying the feel of sand beneath his feet.

Until a temperamental wave crashed and leveled him onto the shore like a beached whale.

A few minutes later, he sat deep in thought on his ocean-themed beach towel with his plastic sand pail and shovel in hand, vengefully crafting his revenge.

Half an hour later, he left the Pacific Ocean with an ominous declaration:

I’ll get you, water!

Fast forward 10 years.

We had the privilege of visiting the Atlantic Ocean on our most recent road trip a few weeks ago.

And it was obviously time for payback.

Come at me!

My revenge-seeking child took a huge step backward, away from the shore, before continuing his tirade.

Come on! Show me what you’ve got!

Ah.

Coast to coast ocean brawling at its finest.

Then he stooped down to admire a cluster of seashells that had washed onto the shore.

Fortunately, he managed to escape the wrath of the Atlantic Ocean…

This time around.

Now, back to that whole ocean snatching incident…

My husband and I had set out with the intention of capturing an incredible sunrise on the beach.

And capture a sunrise we did.

Along with half the Atlantic Ocean.

Armed with our makeshift ocean snatching kit consisting of a freshly guzzled glacier cherry Gatorade bottle that I’d forced upon my husband…

Along with a Ziplock freezer bag that we’d been using as our travel toiletry bag and an R2D2 tote bag that held just the right amount of ocean loot.

Meanwhile, our trusty getaway mobile, a nondescript rental mini van with Oklahoma license plates, sat in the shadows of the parking lot.

It was a chilly 40-something degrees out that morning.

I couldn’t feel my toes.

But it was absolutely worth it.

For witnessing a majestic sunrise on the beach.

And feeling the lush sand beneath my feet.

And taking home the best souvenir money can’t buy.

Determined to make my very own authentic mini beach replica upon returning home, I needed to make the most of the opportunity.

And so we left the beach with bulging pockets full of seashells, a bottle full of Atlantic Ocean water, and a bag of Atlantic Ocean sand.

I absolutely love the ocean.

I love the melodious waves.

I love the paradoxical peaceful calm that dissipates with the intense crash of waves to the shore.

And I especially love majestic sunrises and sunsets.

Sunsets on the Pacific.

Sunrises on the Atlantic.

We had sacrificed precious sleep time to rise early on our vacation, just to witness a sunrise over the ocean.

But it was a sacrifice I was happy to make.

Did I mention I also love dolphins?

Unfortunately, we didn’t encounter any on this trip.

Which was probably just as well.

I might’ve been tempted to capture one and give it new life in my bathtub.

Wow.

I’m not just quirky, I’m apparently full-on crazy too.

Oh well.

I could happily live on the ocean forever.

But for now, I’m still working on creating my mini beach masterpiece.

I could really use my very own at-home oasis.

In the meantime, I’ve evidently become an ocean kleptomaniac.

I’m not sure what this says about my sanity…

But I’m okay with it.

More or less.

Now, I just need to devise a way to snatch a baby palm tree…

~Happy Saturday, friends! Can you tell I love the beach? The ocean is the most therapeutic place on earth, and I would totally live there if I could. One day…~

My prized ocean loot collection...

My prized ocean loot collection…

Jail (For a) Break

Do people ever break in to jail?

No?

Well, I suppose there’s a first time for everything.

Most days, I drive by the local police station.

Some days, I’m tempted to turn myself in.

For a crime I haven’t even committed.

After being imprisoned in a vehicle with two brawling beasts for a matter of mere minutes…

Let’s just say a much-needed break is in order.

A vacation, if you will.

With free room and board.

And courtyards.

And even a complimentary library.

What’s not to like?

Sure, prison food might leave a bit to be desired.

But at least I wouldn’t have to do the cooking.

I’d say that probably qualifies as an acceptable trade-off.

And yes, amenities may be lacking.

But just think:

A break from never-ending heaps of laundry!

And from vacuuming and mopping!

And from stepping on Legos dangerously scattered across every inch of floor!

Oh, and what’s this I hear about free healthcare?

Just give me a couple of books, and a notebook and a pen, and I’ll be good to go.

But first, I need a plausible excuse.

You know…

People do get arrested for not wearing a seat belt.

And sometimes for using profanity in public places.

I even had a teacher in high school who managed to get thrown in jail for jaywalking.

Or what about twerking in public?

Surely, that could land a bit of time away from it all?

Some states have really bizarre laws that could earn some time in the slammer.

Did you know it’s illegal to drive blindfolded in Alabama?

(I don’t know why anyone would, but okay…)

And in Iowa, you simply can’t throw a brick onto a highway.

(Good luck pulling that one off.)

And in Missouri, bear wrestling is banned.

(Now we’re talking!)

And North Carolina heavily frowns upon Drunk Bingo.

(Woo hoo! Sounds like a good time!)

Oh, but there are no beaches in jail.

So maybe that’s not quite the right place for me.

Yeah.

Come to think of it, what I truly need is a relaxing trip to the beach…

~Happy Friday, friends! Hope you enjoy a bit of a break this weekend!~

Ah! Just what the doctor ordered...

Ah! Just what the doctor ordered…