Friday, August 28, 2009

The Poles - Saturday Sunrise

This shot was taken right before the sun had completely risen for the day. After this moment, the sky became very light, and dawn had passed.

This is my first week participating in SkyWatch Friday. There are lots of other neat skies around the world -- go check them out!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Poles, another shot

Just another shot of the poles. Wait for tomorrow. Tomorrow is the real prize winner ;)

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Poles (part 2)

Here are the poles, the actual poles for which this break is named. They draw the line between Hanna Park and the Mayport Naval Base. A surfer walks out to the ocean with his board.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Poles

The Poles is one of the better surf breaks here in Jax Beach. If a surfer really means business (and they're aggressive enough), they'll fight the crowds for a good wave at The Poles. My husband is an example of one of those guys. Always looking for good waves -- even if it means fighting others for the ride.

This weekend we saw some of the biggest waves we ever see around here due to the enormous swell sent by Hurricane Bill. My husband was checking the surf report and talking about going for days beforehand. So, on Saturday morning at dawn, we drove down to The Poles. Here, you can see him carry our daughter out to the beach as we arrived.

Over the next few days or so, I'll post some photos of that morning at the beach.

Monday, August 24, 2009

And Finally...

With this shot of a greenhouse, our garden tour has come to an end.

I don't know why I like greenhouses so much...maybe it's the idea of a greenhouse. The idea that there's this little enclosed space, and within it are all kinds of growing things, beautiful things. This particular greenhouse was a very simple set-up, but it served it's purpose well, nevertheless.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Yesterday's Sky

I decided to interrupt our little tour of the community garden so that I could give you this. I love it when light hangs out on the edges of the clouds, usually right after it has rained, or right before it's about the begin, as was the case here.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Concrete Flower Box

This caught my eye because I liked the juxtaposition of the hard and heavy concrete box holding these delicate little flowers. I think it makes a nice statement.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Little Flags

Several of the plots in the garden were personalized with figurines or statues or little fences. Most of the decorations were nice, but ordinary -- things you could buy at any hardware store for your garden. I loved this decoration, though. These little flags were obviously handmade, hung with bits of string and sticks poking out of the ground. And each flag had a different message. The only unfortunate thing was that the messages were so faded it was difficult to read what most of them said. The exception was the one that you are now looking at. "Breathe". I like that. Very calming; perfect for a quiet garden on a Saturday afternoon.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Minding His Own Business...

This little guy was perfectly perched atop a bamboo pole that enclosed someone's plot in the garden, practically begging to be photographed. So I complied, and now you too have the pleasure of enjoying his company.

(click on the picture for a better view)

Monday, August 17, 2009

Water in Black and White

I found this neat little drainage ditch in the creek that runs along the edges of Jarboe Park. I wouldn't trust the water enough to drink it, but I did think the ditch was pretty visually appealing.

With this shot, I'm contributing to Monochrome Monday. Lots of cool stuff over there -- go check it out!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Sunflower in the Park

There's a great little park in the heart of the beach called Jarboe Park. It's very family friendly... with playgrounds and tire swings and picnic tables and basketball courts. It's a park that everyone seems to know about, and if you happen by on a Saturday you might see all kinds of things going on. There's one thing that I knew very little about until yesterday. Apparently, the beach has begun a community garden. I'd heard about it, but had never seen it. It's really pretty neat, and I'll be posting photos of my recent trip through the tomato plants and flowers and greenhouses. I found this little patch of flowers at the entrance to the garden. I thought it was beautiful, good enough to share.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Empty Lifeguard Chair

I apologize to everyone for my absence this week. I received some fairly big news last weekend, the shock of which has left me thinking about all kinds of things -- but not taking pictures. And if I have no pictures, I have nothing to give you. Again, I apologize, but I am getting back on track.

Without further ado, I give you this empty lifeguard chair. There's a story here. I'm not sure what it might be, yet, but I know there's a story here. It seems wrong somehow that the lifeguard chair, a symbol of safety and security, stands empty. Perhaps someone is being rescued, and that's why it's empty? Perhaps the lifeguards are not yet on duty, or have taken a break, or are off for the day. Perhaps the said lifeguard got terribly hot, and thought that a quick dip in the ocean wouldn't hurt anyone. Ahh...but then, who's watching all those hapless swimmers, especially the out-of-towners who don't know about the undertow?

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Under the Pier

Jax Beach Pier is often used as a respite from the hot sun during the summer. It's the perfect place to enjoy the ocean without melting in the scorching sun. It's also a great place for some interesting people-watching.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Antique Table

I found this beautiful wood carving on the top of an antique table. Nothing much more to share, except that I loved the richness of the wood and the detail of the carving.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Bali Cargo Company - Corner Mural

So, this is not the most artistic photo I've ever taken. But the point of this picture isn't my amazing skills with a camera -- it's the way cool wall that you're looking at. I love this mural. It's really quite a shame that the new location isn't decorated as nicely as this one is. Eventually, someone will buy or lease this storefront, and will probably paint over it -- a very boring beige or grey or army green. Ahh well. Such is life.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Bali Cargo Company - Wall Decoration

Well, it appears that I was mistaken. Apparently, the owner of this little enterprise realized the same thing I had known all along -- this location would likely kill the store. I've been informed that they have indeed moved to the shopping district in Atlantic Beach. I'll have to go check out the inside now -- and get some photos!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Bali Cargo Company - Front Entrance

This is the front entrance to a little store that lasted for only a few months here at the beach. I was just going to check it out the other day when I realized it had closed shop. I was more than a little seemed like such a cool place. I'll be posting a few photos of the outside in the next couple of days.

Unfortunately, these little boutiques usually don't last very long here at the beach. Most of the time, people set up shop right along the main drag, 3rd street. However, there's little to no foot traffic along 3rd street. Everyone drives. So you really have to have something special -- or incredible marketing -- to make it there. A better location for these kind of stores would be someplace along 1st street in Jax Beach, or in the shopping district of Atlantic Beach. The rent for those locations, though, is (I'm sure) more than a beginning entrepreneur could afford.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Beach Fence

I found this little fence on the beach, next to the dunes. I'm not sure what the original purpose of the fence was -- it was too tiny, being only about 4 feet long, to really fence off or protect anything. My best guess is that it is all that remains of a fence that was once used to protect the dunes from playing children or those that don't know better.

I'm posting this shot for Monochrome Monday. Please do go check out some other great photos!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Hibisucs, As Promised

I couldn't leave you hanging, could I?

I found this hibiscus in the entryway that I posted about on Friday. I love these flowers because they are so tropical. I'm not sure if they are native to north Florida, but they do grow well here -- they're everywhere. There are two benefits that I can see to planting a hibiscus in your yard: 1. They are beautiful. Their gorgeous petals call to you and beg you to simply slow down and enjoy life more. 2. They grow like a weed, so even if you don't have a green thumb (which is the case with me) you can still experience gardening success.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

August Theme Day: Night

Red Gladiolus

I know I said that I'd discuss the hibiscus in this post, but I forgot about the theme day...

My husband brought home these gladioli for me the other night, and I thought they would make a great subject for my night picture. He pointed out that they look a little like romaine lettuce in the candlelight, but I still think it turned out well.

Click here to view thumbnails for all participants

Friday, July 31, 2009


This apartment entrance is located just a couple blocks from Jax Beach Pier. I loved it because it has more of a European flavor, the entrances to the apartments quietly tucked away in the corners of the courtyard. Very different from the run-down beach houses that often line those first few streets along the ocean. There's also an hibiscus bush on the left side of the courtyard...more on that tomorrow.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

This is, Unbelievably...

...someone's backyard. Located in the heart of Jax Beach, this person has mastered the fine art of no maintenance, a sort of wild-state park look. The plant and animal life around here is one of the reasons I love my home so much. Yes, it's a little swampy, and, yes, it's a fairly buggy, but it's also incredibly beautiful.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Interesting Lines

I found this palm tree in a neighbor's yard, and I thought the fronds looked interesting against the cloudy sky.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Ft. Lauderdale

I've returned from my weekend in Ft. Lauderdale, and, as promised, have a few pictures to share. This is what I've been up to the last few days, away from home:

This shot was taken at Dania Beach. I love south Florida because surrounding all the plant life are sea grapes. My husband, who is a native of Ft. Lauderdale, says that sea grapes are south Florida's answer to the palmetto bush, but I think they're lovely.

A cool building located in historic Hollywood, just south of Ft. Lauderdale.

For some reason, I loved this phone booth. Still standing, though it's usefulness is obviously long passed. Now it's just a piece of art, a statement of times gone by.

I can't end this post without a photo of my home town, Jax Beach. So, here you go:

This is a Chinese Fan Palm. I liked the way it created a border between me and the birdbath behind.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Lee's Ice Cream

Lee's Ice Cream is a very cool, vintage ice cream parlor in the entertainment district of Atlantic Beach. Located just a few blocks from the ocean, this is a great place to go get a cool treat and enjoy the amazing weather we've been getting!

For those who have been dropping by, I am going to be down in Ft. Lauderdale the next few days. Unfortunately, I won't be able to post while down there, but I will take some awesome pictures which I will share with you when I return. See you next week!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Shadow of a Palm

This photo, again, was taken in old Atlantic Beach. This is the beach access, and these palms line the brick road up to the sand.

Our rainy days have passed and we've been getting some amazing weather. This is the season when it's not uncommon to see pedestrians and cyclists out in board shorts and bathing suits. It's a very lazy and slow time of year.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Brick Leaf

This is part of the same road in yesterday's post of old Atlantic Beach. I don't know what it is about brick roads that I love so much. It certainly isn't the practicality. But they do have a certain charm that asphalt just can't rival.

I'm posting this in honor of Monochrome Monday. Go check out some other great shots!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Walk of Palms

This is the entertainment district in Atlantic Beach. I love this part of town, the brick sidewalks and roads, the palm trees, and the stores and restaurants. Just beyond this walk is a beach access. It's a great place to ride your bike, and there are plenty of stores and coffee shops to hang out in.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Local Artist

A local artist paints at a coffee shop.

Friday, July 17, 2009


Unfortunately, I'm not terribly sure what kind of palm we're looking at. My best guess is Dwarf Umbrella Palm. Can anyone confirm this?

Happy weekend everyone!

Thursday, July 16, 2009


Jax Beach is definitely located in America's Bible Belt. I'm not sure that you could find a park sign exactly like this one anywhere else (correct me if I'm wrong). As they say in Jacksonville, my beloved metropolis, "Big city, small town feel".

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Lawn Chairs

These lawn chairs are always sitting outside a painted furniture store. I love how colorful they are, even if I, personally, would never buy a lawn chair with a pink flamingo in a bathing suit on it.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

A Curious Additon to a Veterinary Practice

I've always found this statue a bit odd. As far as I can see, it has nothing to do with the veterinary practice inside. If it was a horse, then I could perhaps see the connection. But it's a Pegasus. Nevertheless, the owner must be quite attached to it. Several years ago, the statue was demolished in a car accident, and the practice spent a good deal of time and effort to have it replaced. I suppose they had a good reason -- this Pegasus practically shouts, "Beaches Animal Clinic" to those that live here.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Beach Cruiser Against Fence

In honor of Monochrome Monday, I'm posting this shot.

Beach Cruisers are the most common bike you see around here, and you see them everywhere. First Street, which runs along the ocean, belongs to pedestrians and those on bikes. If you're riding in a car it's sort of an unspoken rule that you defer to those who are not (even if they're in the middle of the street). This particular bike is covered with rust, another fairly common sight here at the beach.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

For Sale

A fairly typical beach house, though a little run down. You run into plenty that look like this, but a lot of the older houses have been or are being renovated, especially those that are just a few blocks from the ocean.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Another Cloudy Day

We've been getting a lot of rain here in Jax Beach this fact, it's been a really wet summer.

This is part of the boardwalk that runs along the beach. Jax Beach is fortunate in that there aren't a lot of oceanfront high rise condos, as in other parts of the state, but we do have some.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Check Point

A surfer walks up Jax Beach pier, probably to check the waves.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Seeing Double

This is the Casa Marina Hotel, one of those landmarks that people are always throwing out there, as in, "I'll meet you at the beach at the Casa Marina". It's a popular place for outdoor weddings with an amazing view of the Atlantic Ocean.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Inaugural Photo

I love my home. It is the quintessential beach town in Florida. Quiet, lazy, not too fast, small. There is a way of thinking here that bands the people of Jax Beach together...there are those who live at the beach, AKA "us," and there are those who live in town, AKA "them". Townies.

I have, at times, been one of "them," living in the greater Jacksonville area. And, admittedly, I like it okay. But I'm really glad to be back at the beach. I suppose I've become spoiled again. Really, there's no need to cross the bridge into town when everything I could possibly need is right here.

I want to share this place with you. So I'm beginning a daily photo blog. The thing about the beach is that it's really three beaches in one: Atlantic, Neptune, and Jacksonville Beach -- in that order, from north to south. So these photos will be documenting the lives of all three beaches.

This photo was taken yesterday, during the calm before the storm. Right after I got this shot, I passed a man on a bike who yelled over, "It's comin' fast, it's comin' fast! Hope you get home ok!" Then he pedaled away, towing all his worldly goods behind him. He was right. About 5 minutes later, the sky opened up in one of those late afternoon downpours that are a staple of Florida summer weather.
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