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Amelia SanJon Gallery
Amelia Island Artists Workshop
Sandra Baker-Hinton
218A Ash Street., Fernandina Beach, FL 32034  904-491-8040,  904-557-1195 cell
http://www.sandrabaker-hinton.com
http://www.ameliasanjongallery.com

 
Time has a way of getting away and the faster it goes the behinder I get.  Two weekends
ago we had a first on the island "a garden show".  It was a wonderfully sunny day although still cool.

Jan Smith had done a great job of organizing and promoting it and people came from near and far.
I wished for more time and a lot of money but since neither of those were a reality I still enjoyed looking
and adopting a few of the plants which needed a new hopefully nurturing home.
 
Of great interest to me was the butterfly garden which I always strive to think about when aquiring new
plants. One of my acquisitions was a Passion Flower Vine which is a host plant for our State Butterfly,
the Zebra Longwing.  As an added bonus it has ediable fruit.  It was fun to have the butterfly girl open
an envelope with two Painted Lady Butterflies and gently dump them onto your palm and watch
them slowly realize they have been released to spread their wings and to feel their dainty touch on
your flesh.  They were reluctant to leave that safe solid perch for the precarious perch the flower
petals, but once there they quickly figured out the advantages of that environment. 
The cup the little boy was holding held caterpillars to watch develop at home.

If you go to the link below you can watch a beautiful Barn Owl like the one on the left as she sits on
her eggs in her nest box in California.  It is a live stream and one of the chicks has already hatched
with more to follow soon.  Her 
name is Mollie and her mate is McGee.  I watched him last night as twice
he hopped into their box
and what looked like a rough attempt to mate, but was actually him
"bonding", the owl equivilent to a "hello,
honey, I'm home" kiss.  On the second trip he bonded and left
a nice mouse for her to have for dinner,
her reward for putting up with him I guess.  He certainly
does not share in the sitting responsibilities.
 

 http://www.ustream.tv/theowlbox

I should not make human judgements on animal behavior.  At least they mate for life whereas
Shelly is left only with babies and no child support.  They each seem preprogramed to behave in
their own species' way.
I did get some time to get back into the painting groove with the finishing of two watercolor pieces
except for signatures.  Placing the signature pretty much locks in whether this side is "up" or "down". 
It's time for the watercolor competitions I like to enter but have to have new work to accomplish that. 
Finishing this one was mostly making a judgement call as to whether it was indeed finished or needed
a few more touches here and there.  Now the hardest part to find a suitable name.
 This the second one which I started from scratch and have deemed "finished" is also waiting for
signature and title.  I used to have a professor who named his pieces "Study 1, Study 2, etc.  He would
say "I express myself visually not verbally". 

 I have not had time to photograph the very beautiful Cedar Wax Wings which
migrate through the area in large flocks devouring any berries they find. This batch
swarmed the palm trees across the street gleaning what was left of a harvest
of the fruit from that tree.  The light was too dim to do justice to their absolutedly flawless
feather surface and color.
 A bird of another sort gave me my own private air show from my front yard this past weekend. 
The Concours de Elegance Car Show had come to town.  I could hear the festivities and my own
lawn was car parking was lined along my front lawn with show attendees who have discovered
 our street is an easy walk to the grounds.  Possibly a money maker for our street is in the works.
 It was a very windy day which I imagine took a very skilled and courageous pilot to brave the
elements in order to entertain those of us below with his scary areoacrobatics.  I even got my own
private flyby.
Taking advantage of all eyes being on the sky for the crowd of Car Show enthusastists
this commericial plane flew through the same sky on the heels of the star performer...
...tailing his truly commercial message.  Everyone soon took the airplane's sound and
message in stride without much ado

 
Lots of things starting to happen as we dig out of our burrows after a long unusually cold
winter.  Even the snowbirds had pulled in the shutters from the outside.  Lots of activities 
on the very busy, busy social scene here on the island.  
 
This week spring will hit full blast with temperatures promised to be in the 70's all week long. 
Buds which are bursting are pushing the Live Oak Leaves off to be raked into piles of mulch
for my plants.  Grass will leave its dormant state with a race to get the Live Oak leaves
just starting to drop, raked before they become too entangled in the grass. 
Every local who drops by the gallery is talking about going home to garden.
 
Much to do with finishing up some bookkeeping chores, art show to enter, and packs
and packs of seed I bought to try another approach to having lots of plants for my yard in
a more affordable way along with edible products like squash, peppers, onions, and tomatoes.
Too much cold has all of us inspired to plant, plant, plant.  I'm going to be doing the Lana Grow
workshop the 29th so much to get ready for that. 
 
YEAH!!!!  WARM SUNSHINE HAS RETURNED!!!!!!!!!!