Thursday, December 13, 2012

Rocky Road

Sarasota FL      High:  77      Low:  66

We ain't talkin' about ice cream here...Although Eldo wishes we were! Nope, we're talkin' rocks. Sparky tried to learn how to grind, smooth, and polish rocks today.....It's not as easy as it looks! You can easily grind a rock away to nothing! The lapidary shop has everything you need to make a piece of jewelry from machines of all grinding and smoothing specifications to polishing machines AND saws to saw big rocks into more manageable sizes. You don't even have to have your own rocks! But you do have to make a small donation of 1.00 to work in the shop and chump change for a rock to work on.

A trained volunteer teaches you to use the machines....Sparky picked out a rock for a quarter and off she went... The instructor started to show Sparky how to round the edges, but Sparky decided to make angular edges out of the rock instead of rounded ones. (Sparky following directions is not usually the norm, explains E.)

The one thing about rock and lapidary, you have to have PATIENCE! Something which Sparky is in short supply of...But this would be a good exercise/craft/hobby in developing that. It takes LONG periods of time sitting and carefully "sanding" the rock, checking, rechecking, more sanding...Sparky could have used some tunes to pass the time!

She was ready to use the next step up in the grinding and polishing process before the stone was ready. She kept checking with the volunteer to see if she could hurry up and finish her stone. It's a "hurry up and wait" process. But it looked good to her!  After an hour and a half, it was starting to look pretty.

You really have to have an eye for very fine detail to get the stone where it needs to be ready for polishing. The instructor kept telling Sparky there were still imperfections that might be able to be ground out, but Sparky had trouble seeing them. Hopefully, you get better at spotting them the more you work with stones....Finally, the stone was where Sparky wanted it to be and the instructor agreed.....In two weeks, Sparky will be wire wrapping the stone...

Off to check out the woodshop...Eldy was impressed! Is he going to take up woodworking? Probably not! But it was still a great place for wood hobbyist!  A lot of cool projects were going on---bowls, cutting boards, and more......
Sun 'n' Fun sure has a lot going for it! Every time we have a conversation with someone, they always tell us that the first time they came, it was for a week, the next visit for a month, and most of the time they are now here for the season--season after season. Everybody here just loves it! We do too, but we're not quite ready to spend four or five months just yet. It's still a lot more expensive than say, out in Arizona, at Palm Creek, a similar resort, for example...


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. Looks like you having way too much fun at that fancy expensive resort, enjoy!

  3. grinding rocks, as you explained it. . .seems a little like watching paint dry. . .hmmmm? Your rock looks good though. . .you certainly seem to be having a good time. . .enjoy!

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  4. I wasn't thinking ice cream - I was thinking fudge. I would not have the patience for rock grinding. Big resorts are not my thing. But a lot of people love all those classes and things. Good thing we all don't like the same stuff.

  5. Ha! And I was thinking you had gone down some road with a lot of rocks out there in the boonies of Sarasota.