Today we decided to explore a park close to where we live called Eagle Lake Park. Dan had never seen an alligator in the wild so this was our main goal. Also, just to check out this park and see what it was like! Before we found the main lake, we found a smaller pond or body of water full of lily pads. It had many, many red eared sliders. Also frogs and fish! Dan spotted the best thing: a HUGE Florida Snapping Turtle swimming right under the wooden bridge we were standing on. I think his shell alone was a foot and a half long. I didn't get a pic of him, but that's kind of what he looked like.
When we found the bigger lake, we walked around the perimeter and saw even more turtles- more red eared sliders, a bigger turltle with a beautiful shell, and other small turtles with really black shells. I thought I made a huge discovery when I saw a big Florida Softshell Turtle swimming by... but it turned out the lake was full of them! They were swimming all over, and it was so cute to see all the species swimming around and interacting. I can't count how many of the softshell turtles I saw. I've definitely never seen that many together before; I don't even know if I've seen one in the wild! (Not my pics, but you get the idea!)
Can we take a sec to appreciate the face of a softshell turtle? It is so great! Look at that little nose! Those weird little eyes! I should make a turtle painting haha. They are just too cool!
Anyway, we looked all around the lake, and were starting to get pretty hot so we were going to leave. Then Dan spotted it. The alligator!! He was laying on the side of the lake, in the grass, kind of just sprawled. Not elegant at all. I actually do have pictures of the alligator, but if you can find him yourself, I'll give you a prize. I took them and it took me forever to even see him!
I'm really glad that we went on this walk, and that we got to see the alligator. I have very mixed feelings towards them. I know I use them in my work a lot; probably for this reason. I have nightmares about them all the time- that I'm swimming and all of a sudden I'm swimming in a stream just full of them, they're right under my belly and they're going to eat me. I guess it's a little empowering to make an alligator painting! Putting an alligator in a cute dress or a fancy suit makes it a lot less scary to me. There's a good chance I'm not going to get eaten by an alligator, but you just never know.
Hey guys! I'm super booked with Florida Holiday events this season so I wanted you to know! Basically Tampa Bay stuff. Click the image below to get to a list of the events via facebook!
Ok, here we go... here's some info on the events I will be at!
November 21st- Crafts & Drafts at the St. Pete Shuffleboard Club in St. Petersburg, FL.
Crafts & Drafts is back for its second year, bringing a full day of good old fashioned fun to the St. Petersburg Shuffleboard Club!
This year's event will feature 50 of Tampa Bay's best local artisan vendors; 30 craft beer options; a DIY tie dye station; crafting by makemestudio; complimentary shuffleboard, kids activities, and pet stations; live T-shirt screen printing; a free bike valet provided by Vélo Champ; a pop up shop by Daddy Kool Records; food by Jimmys Slider Food Truck, Jolly Porker, and Riddle on the Griddle; and much, much more!
This is a family- and pet-friendly event! A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Humane Society of Tampa Bay.
Sat., Nov. 21 | 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. | St. Pete Shuffleboard Club
VIP Hour: 10 a.m. - 11 a.m.
The first 500 people in the door get a complimentary tote bag!
VIEW THE COMPLETE ARTISAN VENDOR LIST AT:
CRAFT BEER BY:
Angry Chair Brewing
Green Bench Brewing Co.
Funky Buddha Brewery
Two Henrys Brewing Company
Cigar City Brewing
Brew Bus Brewing
Coppertail Brewing Co.
Big Storm Brewery
Get tickets in advance to guarantee entry!
GA: $5 - Advance & Door
VIP: $25 - Advance | $30 - Door
Children 12 and under are free.
VIP includes a VIP-only hour from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. (peruse and shop vendors' goods before anyone else!), two beer tickets good for full pours, and a commemorative tote bag!
I did this event last year; actually it was my first event in Florida! This was a really good show for me and I met so many nice people. Really good vibe overall, lots of dogs and beer. Very well organized. This year it will be bigger and I will be indoors. Sophie will be coming and also possibly Scout. Yay!
November 28- Shopapalooza at South Straub Park in St. Pete:
Shopapalooza is Tampa Bay's biggest shopping event of the year, packed with free entertainment, free giveaways and plenty of surprises!
The FREE community celebration, now in its sixth year, brings together more than 120 locally owned shops, restaurants, art galleries, service providers, non-profits and community organizations to beautiful South Straub Park in downtown St. Petersburg!
Shopapalooza, now in its sixth year, also features free entertainment, free giveaways, free activities for children and plenty of surprises!
And this year ... we are DOUBLING the fun!
The Shopapalooza Festival takes place 10 am to sunset Saturday Nov 21 and then again Saturday, Nov 28 (aka Small Business Saturday). Comeone or both days! Admission is free.
Shopapalooza is a production of LocalShops1 with the support and sponsorship of the City of St. Petersburg The event helps benefit and spotlight local businesses as well as local nonprofits, including Sunset Rotary Club of St. Petersburg and The Kind Mouse Productions. This year's sponsors include Moorman Photographics, tbo.com, American Stage Theatre Co., Smokin' J's BBQ, Great Exploration Children's Museum and BeachLife magazine.
* Two open-air lots on 2nd Ave North, along the approach to the Pier
* Closest garage is the Sundial St. Pete Garage (entrance: 117 2nd Street North, 33701)
* Metered parking along Beach, Bayshore, Central fills up very fast.
I have not done this event but have heard such great things about it! Plus LocalShops1 is a very cool organization. I will only be there on the second Saturday (Nov 28) so that's the day to come if you want to see me! It's free though anyway, so go both days if you can! There will be different vendors.
December 5th- Tampa Bay Etsy Crew Holiday Market in Tampa:
Get ready for TBEC's annual Holiday Market! This will be a daytime event and will feature a great cross section of all that the TBEC: Tampa Bay Etsy Crew has to offer. Food trucks will be on site. We've got some awesome raffle set up which will include goodies from Red Star Rock Bar and TBEC members. It benefits All Children's Hospital. Be one of the first to arrive and get a Dark Cycle Clothing tote.
Confirmed 2015 TBEC Holiday Market Vendors are:
Evan Gatscher Studios
Pergamo Paper Goods
Art by Sarah Slye
Black Cat Designs
The Occasional Bat
Mermaid Soup Buttons
The Whimsical Studio
Princess and Queen
Works of the Wild
Lotus Leaf Creations
Missy's Hats and MORE
Hannah Beth & Co.
Okay Fine Vintage
Hand bags by Aniko Palko
Maravillosa Jewelry Designs
Thistle & Thyme Photography
Lines & Dashes
Hand Craft Love
Dark Cycle Clothing
Freak Show Follies
Ms. Handmade Soaps
Your Day Bouquets & More
Perthro's Pagan Supplies
I have done one indoor market with TBEC (Tampa Bay Etsy Crew) this year and it was fabulous, so I'm guessing this (outdoor) one will be good too! Plus I almost never am doing anything in Tampa, so that's a cool thing.
December 12th + 13th- Atomic Holiday Bazaar at Sarasota Municipal Auditorium:
Main Room Admission: $5 Adults / 12 & Under Free
Bay Front Room: Free to Enter
Street Fair: Free to Enter
Atomic Holiday Bazaar enters its 10th season on Saturday, December 12 and Sunday, December 13. Going on a decade, Atomic has busted out the seams of the Municipal Auditorium and the Bay Front Room with ever growing talent and a dedicated fan base.
What does one do about this when they refuse to leave their beloved venue, the Sarasota Municipal Auditorium? Expand the show to the great outdoors. Street vendors will be located on Plaza De Santo Domingo, the street between the Municipal Auditorium and the Sarasota Art Center.
The Atomic totebag tradition continues! 100 totes filled with swag and coupons will be handed to the 1st 100 adults thru the door by SRQ's derby darlin's, Rolling Renegades Roller Derby.
Mouthole BBQ has been secured for feeding the masses.
Dj Iche aka Buckroe Skillz will be spinning it in the Main room.
This one is in Sarasota, but I've heard so much good stuff about it and how awesome it is that I'm doing it! I guess it's not that far from my house, only about an hour and a half. Also I'm proud that I got my s*** together and applied in the summer! This is a two day show, which I've never done! AHHHHH! I will be inside in the main auditorium so don't be cheap! This should be a cool show for me because I'm guessing there will be vendors from all over and maybe I'll get to see some new stuff. Definitely time for Christmas shopping at this point, so if I'm not covered for that I'm going trade crazy!
December 19- Pierce St. Market in Clearwater:
There's no facebook event for this yet because it's a little far out. Here's the info from the one I did on Saturday:
Pierce Street Market is back with 80+ vendors! This month we are adding our new Food Truck alley under the bridge with tons of amazing food! We're adding tons of new vendors and bringing back your favorites from our Grand Opening!
Come out and find handmade artists, vintage, artisian food, coffee, clothes, organic produce, body care and more!
Go to www.PierceStreetMarket for all the details and find us 2nd Saturdays Oct-May!
This is the brand new market in Clearwater on the mainland side of the bridge. It is really wonderful especially since there is not a whole lot going on in Clearwater, like this or otherwise. I did the grand opening for it and also Saturday's market. I am doing the December 19th market, not the 12th since I will be at Atomic. This is maybe one of the most beautiful market locations because it's right on the water near the marina. I happen to like that it's near my house so Dan can go home and get me snacks! This is for sure a high quality market like markets I've attended in St. Pete and Tampa- there is nice art, jewelry, food, flowers, etc. I have met several new friends here too! So that's a good thing. Oh and sooooo much parking! Really very convenient. I will post a link to the event when it exists :)
So that's all my Saturdays until Christmas plus one Sunday! I'm hoping to fit into the Tampa Indie Flea for December 20th. I stopped in their Grand Opening yesterday and that was nuts so I want to try that out. The only thing I'm disappointed with was I screwed up my scheduling and have not done a St. Pete Indie Market in forever. This is not me intentionally ignoring them, it's more me being disorganized and doing other things instead. So hopefully I will be doing that during the upcoming months because it is always a good time.
After being in Florida for a little over a year now, my work and I are starting to feel at home. Besides being recognized at art fairs and craft fairs, I've been putting my work into some different establishments in the Tampa Bay Area! This week I brought work to two different establishments, Michele Tuegel Contemporary in St. Petersburg and The Paper Seahorse in SOHO Tampa.
On Tuesday I got to go into St. Petersburg and visit with Michele Tuegel. I had never been there before, but I was not disappointed! Her space is a legit gallery with wonderful work all over the walls and on tables. Everything is quality, i did not have any reservations working with her! The gallery is so bright and beautiful I could have stayed there all day, looking at chatting. They were finishing up reorganizing for the holiday show, which was good timing for me! Michele knew she wanted to get some holiday cards and possibly some prints, but she had never seen the originals before. I'm so glad that Michele decided to hang some of my originals; she has eight of them there, six of which are currently up! I'm going to try to get over there on Saturday when the show opens and there are other gallery events in St. Pete so that I can see everything for myself.
Here is a little about the gallery from her website:
"FINE ART, CRAFT, DESIGN + ADORNMENT
Michele Tuegel Contemporary opened in 2012 as an aspiration of artist and local arts advocate Michele Tuegel, best known for her efforts as founding Executive Director of Florida Craftsmen Gallery in the '80's.
The vision of Michele Tuegel Contemporary is to promote the work of extraordinary artists and to engage the public in a rich visual conversation. A discriminating aesthetic mix is curated throughout the gallery by combining the highest-quality fine art and fine craft objects by 70 recognized artists from throughout the country. Intimate solo and group exhibits are rotated every six weeks.
Please visit and experience this skillfully-designed gallery space and the artists who make it come alive. We celebrate the handmade and hope to leave you enthused and inspired. "
Below is a facebook event for the show on Saturday, November 14th, in case you can make it! I'm really going to try!
Next, The Paper Seahorse! I got to drop off some cards and postcards there yesterday morning before work. The Paper Seahorse is in SOHO Tampa, which is a cute and poppin' area! Besides having an adorable and tempting store full of stationery, papers, notebooks, pens, and more, you can take all kinds of classes at there! I had met the owner Tona during the last year at several different events we were both attending. Maybe I met her husband Randy first, I don't remember! Either way they are both lovely people and I was excited to see Tona and have some cards at her store. When I got there, Tona wasn't in yet but Julie was working. It was fabulous meeting Julie and she was so helpful in scheduling me to teach a class in January and one in February- Suminagashi, Japanese paper marbling which I loveeeee doing!
Here is some more about the Paper Seahorse:
"The Paper Seahorse: Artisinal Paperie and Makerie
We are purveyors of all things writing and the handmade.
We are passionate about paper: from the everyday to the luxury.
Modern, lovely and sometimes naughty. Always fresh and delicious.
Handcrafted in small batches: we feature letterpress, stationery, custom & handmade invitations, paper craft, and classes/workshops that inspire and challenge you.
We dare you to write more letters, get your hands dirty and laugh from the heart!
Let's get crafty..."
Since this is a new thing I literally just decided to do, I probably never wrote about The Disco Dolls, so let's do it! The Disco Dolls is in Seminole Heights, Tampa, and is FABULOUS.
Let's see what they have to say to describe themselves first:
"Our mission at The Disco Dolls is sustainable luxury. We strive to create a culture of quality, sustainability, and careful consumerism. We believe in seeing familiar things in a new way. With a nod to the past, we wish to captivate, fascinate, enchant, and charm the observer. ”
The Disco Dolls Studio is located in the Seminole heights neighborhood of Tampa, FL. We are a full service salon, stocking Keune and Aquage professional products. Our shop offers a unique selection of pieces created in our working studio, including clothing, home accessories, and art. WE STRIVE TO STOCK LOCAL AND NATIONAL, UNIQUE PRODUCTS. currently stocking Rita wall jewelry, john fluevog shoes, tipsy candles, wild rose, and Angel Face Botanicals. "
YES, they are a salon, vintage shop, home accessory shop, handmade clothes shop, art gallery- they are everything and it somehow works. FASHION. HAIR. ART. is what they do, and they do it well. Probably because all of these things are art. I went into The Disco Dolls a few months ago for a Seminole Heights First Friday, and ended up buying a painting made by their resident artist Beth. I love Beth's work, and now I love stopping in and seeing the new stuff she makes every month. The other two ladies who own and run Disco Dolls are sisters Leigh Anne and Kristine. Collectively after meeting them and talking to them for a bit, they decided my cards and stuffed critters would be a good fit for their shop and they are!! Also I love Disco Dolls because it's the best place to stop during First Fridays, it's the most festive and if they don't have a fancy mixed drink at least they have wine!
Owner & Designer