Johnny and I had the last week of September planned for some time now, anticipating the spring tides that were going to be both exceptionally high and low because of the alignment of the earth, the sun, and the moon.
For us, this meant three days of foraging for clams, just in time for winter storage.
spring tide, the time for
gathering the fleshy clams
to eat through winter
Though the spring tide comes monthly, it’s not always low enough to make a trip to the shore worthwhile and the weather and timing are not always ideal either. It was great this week though and we even went out on Monday evening from half 11 until nearly 1 in the morning. After two days of fun, we decided to keep the children home from school so they could join us. No regrets as we had a great morning together picking blackberries and then we were at the beach from noon on.
The tide chart that our week was planned around.
…spring tides, a common historical term that has nothing to do with the season of spring. Rather, the term is derived from the concept of the tide “springing forth.” Spring tides occur twice each lunar month all year long, without regard to the season.”
The otter clams have to be dug out of the sand but the razor clams are acquired by a different method which I wrote about last February here.
Summer homes are filled with the familiar faces of islanders who, often following work opportunities, have moved their primary residence to the mainland. Many are here with their families, an annual ritual organized around the various children’s camps offered, while others are here for family festivities that are planned around the fishermen’s schedules. Dozens more come just because they still, and always will, consider the island their home, where their youth was spent and their heart still is. Continue reading
I remember as a child going digging for clams with my parents, aunts, uncles, and cousins by the light of the moon or sometimes in the wee hours of the morning. While the adults made the long walk down to the shore, we children skipped, cartwheeled, and zig-zagged in a not so serious race to find the first holes in the sand. They were abundant so we were all ‘winners.’ The holes indicated a clam beneath and the adults would then dig and collect it, some using a shovel, others preferring to dig by hand. Continue reading
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Check out this great post from Woodland Gnome at Forest Garden about their own heart stone that includes a link to another great blogger, Colleen at Silver Threading, who writes about another heart stone in her Swamp Fairy series.
I had a lovely morning walk with Adrien down to the shore. I thought it would be nice to take him and his camera as he often takes pictures around the house–the life of our dog is well documented. 🙂
This is where I found my tiny heart stone. Maybe it wasn’t such a rare find after all because over the course of our walk, we found another dozen heart stones; admittedly we were looking for them this day. They were all about hand sized–none as small and precious as my Haiku heart stone, but all unique just the same. We photographed each of them and left them where they were found. Continue reading
Fyffe playing with the birds at Kilmurvey Beach
Today’s walk with Fyffe was especially wonderful. There was no sunshine, rather it was grey, windy and spitting light rain. But the tide was low, I mean low-low tide, and if you live on the coast you know what that means–more of the beach being exposed than ever is. And with perfect patches of seaweed here and there, the dog was in heaven. The seaweed didn’t interfere with the walk, but was enough to entice many different sizes and types of birds to pick for food. The entire time there he spent racing up and down the beach chasing after them, hopeful to catch one. That’s doubtful to happen with them being so nimble, but he never gives up and they seem to admire his relentless pursuit. These walks are always one of the best parts of my day, and especially so today as a welcome break from the holiday hoo-ha.
Some of my walk on the beach I spent power posing, Amy Cuddy inspired, after watching this engrossing TED Talks–Life Hacks. If you don’t have time for them all, #5 is good for a laugh and #6 will teach you to improve on something you likely already do very well.
- 1 Amy Cuddy: Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are 21:03
- 2 Jane McGonigal: The Game That Can Give You 10 Extra Years of Life 19:31
- 3 Shawn Achor: The Happy Secret to Better Work 12:21
- 4 Joshua Foer: Feats of Memory Anyone Can Do 20:30
- 5 Derek Sivers: How to Start a Movement 5:42
- 6 Terry Moore: How to Tie Your Shoes 3:00
- 7 Sheena Iyengar: How to Make Choosing Easier 16:06
- 8 Andy Puddicombe: All It Takes Is 10 Mindful Minutes 9:25
Much of the rest of my walk was spent thinking about the party Johnny and I host in a few days. Time to get preparing the menu and gifts for guests…
I hope you are all enjoying this holiday season and are finding time for yourselves between the memory making gatherings with friends and family.
I’m delighted to say that I finished my lesson 1 beginner sewing tutorial a few weeks earlier than expected. Needing a gift for a birthday party, I seized an opportunity to make what was the subject of my tutorial, hence, killing two birds with one stone. Although I’m not so fond of the image conjured up by that saying, I like the sentiment that it evokes; any singular effort that accomplishes more than one objective gives double the gratification and often creates available time. My excitement never wanes over feats like this. Continue reading