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More Shelling!

This week a fellow blogger referenced something we began earlier this year, our quotes journal, and looked on my blog for a link but could not find one.  This is because I have relied more and more on Instagram to share our projects, our travels, and our great finds.  It is very hard to reference an IG picture or search for topic, (if what you are searching for is specific) since you have to match the hashtag.  You cannot search for key words in the comments or caption on Instagram like you can on a blog.  

This revelation reminded me of the importance of blogging.  Yes, it is redundant at times.  It does not have the audience that my Instagram feed does, therefore, I do not get immediate feedback and suggestions.  It is not as creative.  It is not as personal.  However, it is detailed.  It is thorough.  It is reference-able.  It is chronological.  It can be more than what I make of it.

To be honest, I don’t always see the value in a blog post titled More and More Shelling or Another Day, Another Beach.  But someone searching for shelling or places to visit in CT might!  People who are considering homeschooling high school may find value in knowing that my 9th grader left Teaching Textbooks because she was not “getting it” and switched to McGraw Hill’s Key to Algebra and now she “gets it”.  Or that my 7th grader found a sea urchin in Rhode Island and it contained the entire body, unlike the sea urchin we found in Florida and we are not sure what to do with it!

I am a bit behind in my blogging but not so far behind that catching up is impossible.  

Let’s catch up on shelling, shall we?  
The interest is still there and with that interest comes more and more learning.
The girls read from Apologia’s Zoology 2: Swimming Creatures and we tried Apologia's Marine Biology as an audiobook but it does not work well as an audiobook.....

Lilah is working on a shell necklace to enter into the Cape Cod Shell Festival in June:

Grace is taking pictures of her local shells and using the photo cube to print the pictures which she then adds to her journal and is creating her very own Shells of Long Island Sound field guide.  

Lilah is doing the same except she is drawing and watercoloring the individual shells. 

We bought an inexpensive caliper off Amazon (non digital, $7) to take accurate measurements.  We travel with our field microscope and field guides, our laundry bags (which make great shelling bags) and our $10 fish nets from Cabela’s!

Lilah found a great book:  The Seas A Celebration of Nature, in Word and Image by Courage Books at The Book Barn in Niantic.  She read it to us in the car.

We researched the use of Muriatic Acid a.k.a. Hydrochloric Acid to remove mineral deposits from the outer layer of shells and decided to go with a safer alternative, CLR.  I adore how our moon snails look after a 4 second soak and rinse with tap water.  However, we feel this process changes the character of the shells and we won’t do this with our prized shells, but for little drills and moonsnails, it turns them into gorgeous pieces to place in a glass jar on the mantle.

We are on the lookout for the best shelling beaches in the Northeast, New York and New Jersey.  Recently we discovered Rocky Neck State Park in CT and Watch Hill, Rhode Island, but I will save those pictures for the next post!


  1. Love this post! I so wish we had a beach close by to do the type of shelling you guys are able to do. Also I am so glad to be some more posts from you, because quite frankly you are such an inspiration to me. Looking forward to more stuff!!

    1. Diane, thank you for helping me to realize the value in our blogs and why I need to keep blogging these days and weeks and years!

  2. Thank you for posting. You are such a blessing to me and I am sure to many others who haven't commented.

  3. A great week. I agree IG is harder to find things. I have tagged all Keilee's 9th grade post with a unique hashtag. So I can find the things I need. :) I love that you blog and please don't ever quit. I love blogging but it seems like I do it less and less often.


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Shelling in Coastal Connecticut, Rhode Island

It is a wise father that knows his own child. - William Shakespeare

Our family has always embraced each other’s interests.  We almost take them on as our own.  I have attended two weather conferences with Grace.  I have run a baking camp for Lilah.  It is truly wonderful when we discover an interest that we all share. For us, this interest is shelling.  
You can’t shell as home.  After a long and at times difficult week, Greg and I decided to skip our normal Saturday routine of food shopping, running errands and having a nice family dinner at home, in favor of exploring beaches in Connecticut and Rhode Island.  We threw food into a cooler, grabbed water bottles, our microscope, shelling bags (mesh laundry bags), and headed north.
Our first stop was Rocky Neck State Park.  We have mixed feelings about this beach.  We love the soft white sand and the glacier formations to climb on and the contrast of colors created by the water, the sand and the rock, but we disliked the Amtrack trains that…