VA Beach Sandsculpting 2018

I was shocked to realize it had been four years since I had been to the sandsculpting championship in Virginia Beach. Directly following my trip to Asheville, I drove to VA Beach! I could not have asked for better weather. It was in the high 70s, no clouds in sight, and no humidity. It was a wonderful beach vacation!

I purposefully picked a hotel right next to the sandsculpting tent.

As much as I enjoy sleeping in, I HAVE to wake up and see the sun rise when I am at the beach. Glad I did.

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Dolphins!

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Please visit the site for more on the sculptors and the results.

“Chiseled” – Male figure struggling to break free from stone slabs but running out of time.DSCN5345

“Time Frame” – Looking back through time, a memory fills your senses. Happiness, joy and laughter, playing near the fences. A lifetime of memories, some stop you on a dime. Shape your heart and soul, a single frame of time.

“Atlantis – City of Love” – I believe that long long time ago a community had love for each other. This community was called: “Atlantis.” We are all different humans but we need to love and respect each other. Because from good things come good things. A good deed is more than one nice word.

“Re-Entrance” – That unexpected moment in time a love of the past steps back into your life. Just at the moment the memories of those days started to fade and dry up like an old painting. The beauty of that person energizes your life once again…

“Church Key” – While Ben Franklin may not have said “Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy,” he did inspire the sentiment, and Dennis Denuto couldn’t help but approve, for, as he says, “It’s the vibe of the thing, your Honour.”

“Worshippers of Points” – Point: from old French word meaning “dot, point, period (the punctuation mark),” from Latin punctus, past participle of pungere “to prick, to puncture.” The Indo-European root is peug – “to prick.” Related borrowings from Latin include pugilist and pugnacious. When you puncture something, you use a sharp object to make a tiny hole in it. That tiny hole, especially from a distance, looks like a point, but if you zoom in there is a large hold. The HOLE by definition is hollowed place in something solid. A place or position, that needs to be filled, because someone or something is no longer there. But don’t do that, because you will lose point!

“When Loved Ones Become Treasured Memories” – My sculpture depicts a photo of a grandfather and grandmother (who have passed) in a warm embrace. The framed portrait reminds the onlooker of the “treasured memories” of times spent together. The back shows gifts given from them long ago as another reminder of happy childhood memories.

“Beauty Fool” – The Quest of Beauty, we are told/For to reach happiness, we should behold/Era’s fashion and perfection change/Slaves of Looks, we are shamed/Following the Age’s new standards and tools/Forever unsatisfied, we are Beauty Fools

“Flight of Love” – The main thing in life is love.

“Essence” – The final reduction of our memories, our quintessential spirit.

“Bait and Switch” – This example of Bait and Switch illustrates the practice of gaining your interest with something alluring and beautiful, something that ignites warm feelings of fun and fantasy, but in ‘reality’ delivering something that is distasteful and disturbing. The line between fantasy and reality is sometimes very thin and vague, then other times it is as wide as an ocean. This piece of art will hopefully get you to think. Think about what you can do to help save our natural resources by drastically reducing our use of plastics.

“Strange Love” – Sometimes love can be strange and powerful. Even nature gives up when true love comes.

“Lucid Dreams” – A boy finds a way to explore the world by connecting with birds in his dreams.

“What Goes Around Comes Around” – Literally, it means that the status eventually returns to its original value after completing some sort of cycle. In its figurative sense: a person’s actions (whether good or bad) will often have consequences for that person.

“Meditation” – Joy, anger, fear, happiness, sadness. As the clouds run through the blue sky emotions arise in our minds. And as the clouds bring rain and salvation from the scorching heat our emotions have a reaction to the outside world. They help us to understand what we want (as it seems to us). But what do we find if we try to look beyond. Sometimes in order to find something we need to get rid of something.

“Moses” – It was God’s hand and perfect plan to save Moses’ life as an infant. God spoke to Moses and used him to lead his people out of Egypt. We read of the plagues and the Passover, the parting of the Red Sea, Mount Sinai and the journey to the Promise Land. Moses was a foreshadowing of Jesus. Through God’s grace, he sent his son to rescue people from sin and death. The familiar verse John 3:16, is God’s rescue plan. For God so love the world, that he gave his only son, that whosoever believes in him shall not perish, but have eternal life. To get a deeper sense of his plan, I encourage you to read the book of John.

“Embrace” – Our heart is wide enough to embrace the world and hands are long enough to encompass the world.

“Emerge” – I am you, I am me…I am everything you see. I am strong and the most powerful thing. You may surely see me sometimes as being rough and cruel but I’m also capable of bringing the sweetest things to your eyes. I am fragile…delicate and elegant. I am made of pure life itself…Life is intimately connected to me, it cannot exist without me. I am Nature. And I am wounded. I need your help quickly for future generations to emerge…

“Colors of Feelings” – “We use colors, but we paint with our feelings. The brush, hand and palette are necessary to draw, but the picture is created not by them.” (Jean-Simeon Chardin)

“Carousel” – “We can’t return. We can only look behind from where we came and go round and round and round and round in the circle game.” — Joni Mitchell 1967 / Our life is composed of circles and cycles. Daily, yearly, a life time. The choices you make throughout your life build the person you are. That accumulation of choices has brought you to this spot, right here, right now, reading these words. Change one choice in your past and you could be living a different life. We can’t see into the future, we can only learn from our past. Your next choice will be the first step into your future. Which path will you choose? Choose wisely. And, oh yes…Enjoy the Ride!

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“150% Organic” – 0% fertilizer

“Blackberry Blossom” – Music is the language of the soul. A simple song can transport you back to a moment in time or conjure feelings that bubble from deep within. A rhythm, a beat, or a tune that tugs at your heart strings can trigger a tidal wave of emotion of lull you softly into tranquil calm. We are frequencies, vibrating through the space time continuum. Our breath and our heart beat looking for another with whom we may harmonize and synchronize. Not only us, but the world around us. We thirst to create music and live out the vibrant humming of life that resonates from our heart and our soul.

The next morning, I had planned on just watching the sun rise from my balcony, but as soon as I saw it was going to be a cloudless sunrise, I quickly brushed my teeth and headed outside.

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Another beautiful beach vacation! I really need to plan one every year. I feel like Superman when he is re-energized by the sun. I get the same feeling by the ocean.

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Getting to know Virginia – Staunton (Charlottesville)

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On a day off from work, I decided to drive to Charlottesville for fun. It has an outdoor shopping area closed off to cars and I wanted to find it. I found it, but you have to pay for parking and it was hot and I decided to keep driving. I ended up driving through part of UVA then headed back to the 64. I decided to keep driving west toward Staunton.

Historic Staunton has some beautiful old homes. I would love to go back again and take more pictures (but will need a driver for that!).

Not sure what this is, but I saw it down the street and had to snap a picture.

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Staunton also has a ton of old churches.

Just another lovely little town in Virginia to visit :)

Getting to know Virginia – VCU

So, I started a wonderful new job at VCU – Virginia Commonwealth University. It is a huge, sprawling, urban campus, actually, two campuses, and I walked around very briefly last week on my lunch break and took a few pictures.

This is the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart on the Monroe Campus. I wanted to walk around the whole thing, but the bus was coming and I was already running out of time. I’ll go back when the weather gets cooler.

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Courts Building across from the MCV Campus.

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Bird bathing in front of the Governor’s Mansion.

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Not sure what these buildings are, but they are across from the Capitol.

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A little bit of the Richmond skyline.

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I think I took a tour of the Capitol building when I first moved here, guess I’ll need to go again.

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I thought these shots were interesting, blending the old with the new.

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There is a very quaint courtyard not too far from my office where a lot of people go to eat their lunch. It has a fountain, some statues, cute bistro tables and chairs, and a HUGE tree that offers shade.

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You don’t have to look too far to see peaceful tranquility woven into the industrial chaos.

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KDH (Kill Devil Hills), OBX NC September 2010

Thought I had put all of my beach vacations up, but I was wrong! Here are some pictures of the first time I went to the OBX.

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Stayed at the Days Inn Mariner, right on the sand.

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These are called Devil Purses, but they are really just egg casings.

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Jelly fish pod thingys

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Where did I get that nail polish? I love that color!!

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Beautiful sunrise!

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I ate at Mulligan’s one night. I STILL have memories of the surf and turf hamburger. It was just a regular hamburger but it had a crab-cake on top. YUM!!!

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I didn’t drive thru it (I have since), but I thought the Brew Thru was an ingenious concept!

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Took a few shots of some of the more colorful beach houses.

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Visited the Roanoke Island NC Aquarium in Manteo. It was small, but a nice diversion.

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These were shot with my old camera and I must say I can see a major improvement from that one to my current one.

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Yes, that is my face. Not only has my technology improved, my technique has too.

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I ate at the Sugar Shack Market, lots of fried goodness, and I enjoyed the gorgeous sunset.

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Have I mentioned how much I love the beach? ;-)