|Calcite replaced gastropod|
One of my very favorite past times is collecting fossils. Nothing gets me more energized than finding an amazing fossil or mineral specimen. I can search for hour upon hour, spending an entire day on my hands and knees scouring the ground for "just one more". I don't really recall the day when my interest in fossils began. I have always simply loved rocks.
|Calcite replaced clam shell|
I remember going on several outings with my family, traveling Utah in search of areas where we could rock hound. My parents enthusiasm for collecting was addicting and it is an obsession that has plagued me into adulthood as well, much to my husband's dismay. I plan fossil hunting expeditions the same as another would plan a Disney Land vacation. I look forward to these outings like a child awaiting Christmas morning, and I love to teach my children about all I know. I've carried my babies on my back while I've tramped across Utah, searching for another amazing discovery, and my kids love to search with me. One of my favorite things to see is my children dressed in their dusty jeans and floppy hats scouring the ground near by.
|Rare fossil mud crab 45-55 Million years old|
We have rocks and fossils hiding in nearly every nook and cranny of our home. They fill my curios, adorn my shelves, and decorate my children's rooms. So, when I realized I had the chance to interview my amazing sister, Candace, who also shares my avid interest in rocks, minerals, and fossils, I jumped at the chance. She collects amazing specimens that I only dream of owning and has even started her very own business where she sells and trades fossils, minerals and other rare gems. I love her Online Store and visiting is like touring a virtual museum. You'll love the fossils and gems she has on display! I hope you enjoy the interview......
|Very rare fossilized coral and sea|
1) When did you first develop an interest in fossils and minerals?
My parents took my sister and me out collecting ever since we were children and the love of fossils has stuck with me ever since. I thank my parent’s everyday for instilling in me the great appreciation I have for this world we live in. The earth is such an amazing and beautiful place. Life is beautiful and we should treasure every moment we have here and actually LIVE it.
2) What prompted you to start a business selling unique fossils and jewelry?
I have always had a great love for fossils and jewelry, so, I figured why not? I started a small business, selling the fossils and minerals that I love. It’s a great way to show my collection off and get them out there to share with everyone. I love to share my knowledge of fossils, rocks, and minerals, and I love to see others get excited about the same things I do. I try to make my items affordable so everyone can enjoy a piece of natural history. I sell fossils in their raw state or set in jewelry.
3) What is your favorite thing to collect?
|Fossilized Amber with Mayfly|
4) Tell us about your favorite fossil specimen?
My favorite fossil specimen is baltic amber. I love the way that amber preserves bugs, plants, and other inclusions. The preservation is astounding. The insects are millions of years old, but the amber has created such an air tight tomb that every detail is still intact. The wings are perfect, the eyes are perfect, etc… My favorite piece would be a small piece I have with a spider in it, and next to the spider is the spider’s web. It’s amazing that even the web would survive.
|Dinosaur bone pendant|
5) What is your favorite mineral and why?
I love stilbite. It is such a beautiful mineral. It forms in wonderful shapes such as bow like shapes, flowers, etc… I have pink, orange, and even red colored stilbite. I have seen it form on chalcedony and apophyllite. What a stunning combination! The English word stilbite comes from the Greek word stilbein which means to shine because of its pearly luster.
6) Will you share your best collecting experience?
My favorite collecting experience was just this past year when my husband had to go out of town for a few months to work. I had plenty of time on my hands to roam the desert in search of new treasures! I had been out in Utah, visiting my parents and on my way home I decided to stop out in the desert for a hike and to search for some neat rocks. I set out on my adventure and stumbled upon some strange petrified wood knots in the Morrison Formation. I also found a claw shaped piece that really had me stumped. They were very detailed pieces and were like nothing I had ever seen before. That next weekend I took my parents and my sister back to look around again and we found more of the claw shaped wood, more knots, and we found some really neat seed pods. We also found a really strange piece that looked almost like a flower bud. (???)— A very puzzling piece. We later took our find to a Paleo-botanist who told us he had never seen anything like it. He informed us that our claw like pieces were thorns. He had no idea what the flower bud piece could be. In the entirety of his career he had never seen one like it. He said he could date it back to the Jurassic Era. He was really excited about what we had found and said it was most likely a new species of plant and he could not wait to research the wood further! It was such a fun experience for our entire family! I will treasure that trip forever!
|Fossilized sand dollar|
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