Wednesday, March 31, 2010

29 South Eats

Restaurants with patios, decks and porches are quite popular these days with our sunny 75 degree days, and 29 South Eats is a good choice among them.  With a fresh, eclectic menu, a chef's garden out back, local farm suppliers and options to dine inside or out, owner/ chef Scotty Schwarz has a good thing going.  Menu choices like Sweet Tea Brined Pork Chops, Lobster Corn Dogs and Coffee and Doughnuts Sundaes have kept our guests happy and looking for more.  The Kobe Burgers and Fried Green Tomato Short Stack make for a good meal, as well.  We are so darn lucky to have so many great choices in this town.  It's no wonder that restaurants on Amelia Island routinely show up on Jacksonville's top 25 restaurant lists.

Fairbanks House

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Amelia Island is Pure Heaven

At least at sunset in late March on a perfect 74 degree day.  May it come to your neck of the woods very soon.  You so deserve it... and we're willing to share.  And if it doesn't come to your neck of the woods soon, come share ours.  April flowers smell fabulous here. And the wine on the porch was mighty tasty tonight.

Fairbanks House

Sunday, March 28, 2010

A Different Kind of Easter Bunny

He doesn't quite have the happy going on but he is festive.  I think that I had a dream about him one night after I had a hot enchilada salad and martgueritas for dinner.  He was coming to get me.  And now I'm found.  Yo-boy... But I still think that he's colorful.

Fairbanks House

Saturday, March 27, 2010

More Bunnies at the Easter Egg Cottage

I'd better start keeping tabs.  It'll be bigger than the invasion of the pirates...  At least they look friendly.

Fairbanks House

Friday, March 26, 2010

Travelling Carillon

The travelling Carillon came to Fernandina tonight and put on a show for hundreds of spectators seated by the river on a fabulous spring night at sunset.  The Carillon is a set of VERY large brass bells played like an organ without the keys, featuring foot pedals in the foot and hand locations.  Follow the gaze of the spectators to the large train car - looking thing and you've got yourself a carillon.  Many came for the music, some came for the spectacle, but all came for the fabulous evening.  Thanks go to the Historic Downtown Business Association for bringing this fine event to us this evening.  Those are the same folks who bring us the Frist Friday Sounds on Centre concerts... with another one coming up a week from tonight.  See you there?

Fairbanks House

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Camelia Dust

The camelias in town look better than I've seen them in years:  deep green healthy leaves, abundant longer lasting flowers and a carpet of long-lasting faerie dust-like mulch left behind.  Earlier in the season the signs of disease that had been on them for the last couple of seasons were prevalent but they seem to have enjoyed the extended cooler temperatures and revived enough to put on a great show and keep it going onto overtime.  Who'd've thunk it?

Fairbanks House

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Artistic Expression

Artistic expression is always on display in Fernandina but never so much as outside of one of our many artists' studios/ galleries.  Colorful fun everywhere you look.  Amelia Island is quite the artist haven - from fine arts and crafts to music and writing - artists of every persuasion and level of ability find a home here.  Visiting artists are always welcome and a treat for the locals.  The Second Saturday of each month provides an opportunity to stroll amidst the fine works of resident and visiting artists, alike, in the Artrageous Artwalk in the downtown galleries.  This coming weekend will provide two unique opportunities for visiting musical artists:  Friday evening will feature a travelling Carillon of bells for a free concert on Centre Street, and Saturday brings us a record launch and concert by Nashville artists, Queen of Hearts, at St. Peter's Episcopal church. Sounds like a good weekend for artistic expression.

Fairbanks House

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Spring Fever

Is busting out all over.  What a great day to be riding around on a trike.  Or on anything else for that matter.  Another sunny and 71 degree day.  Poyfect.

Fairbanks House

Monday, March 22, 2010

Alex, the Dog

At least I think that's his name.  I met him on Saturday down by the river and wanted to post him here that night but I couldn't remember his name.  But he's so darn cool that I'm going to risk the mistake and give him his due.  Does anyone know _____, the Dog?  Is Alex correct?  I'm willing to be corrected and he went to such trouble to look spiffy that I'd like to get it right.  Anyone?  Anyone? Bueller?

Fairbanks House

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Almost Easter

And the Easter Egg Cottage is going to be ready.  Bunnies, eggs, flowers and tea parties sprouting everywhere.  Always glad that they've got Amelia Island covered in terms of preparations for the disbursement of the candy.  The Easter Bunny will know that we've got spirit.

Fairbanks House

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Shiny Happy People

All enjoying the first day of Spring.  And, as you would expect, they're all headed to the ice cream shop.  And why not?  It was an incredible 73 degree blue sky day.  With many more promised.  Have we made it yet?  Fingers crossed...

Fairbanks House

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Spring Spring Spring Spring

We're almost there guys.  Hang on just a little bit longer.  This is coming to a tree near you very soon.  And if it doesn't, come see ours.

Fairbanks House

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Another Amelia Island Garden Show Customer

Looks like someone else went to the Amelia Island Garden Show last weekend and picked up some pretty annuals.  The difference between these ones and mine is that these ones made it into pots...

Fairbanks House

P.S. I've missed a couple of days because I've been adding things to our Facebook page. I'm now finding that I have too many social media mouths to feed, so if you don't find an entry here, be sure to check out our Facebook page and become a fan. The entries will then feed right to your page. But - don't worry - I'm not abandoning the blog, some people only look at Facebook or Twitter (sigh) so I update all of them.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Across the Universe

As far as the space/ time continuum goes anyway.   We've got us a horse and carriage between an 1800's house and a horseless carriage in the form of a brand spankin' new Incredimobile here for Concours.  The vehicle in the back is our favorite combo of Cyndi and Boomer picking up another fun girls' group, while the vehicle in front was driven here by its owner for the benefit of one of our guests who is negotiating to buy it. (I don't know what it is but it truly is incredible.)  The people on the porch are all of the other male guests who are waiting to be invited out to the curb to take a look at the car.  Girls and their horse and carriage, boys and their horseless carriage; it's all the same across the universe.

Fairbanks House

Friday, March 12, 2010

Patty Cake's

Through the window.  That's all I dare do.  Yummy yum yum yum.

Fairbanks House

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Last Night's Sunset

Finally got it to work.  Enjoy.  I know I did.

Fairbanks House

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Ginger Cream

I've been trying for about 20 minutes to upload a photo of tonight's beautiful sunset and - no matter what I do - can't seem to get any combo to work.  So.... how about a recipe?  As all of our guests know, we serve a fruit course first at breakfast and I work fairly diligently at never serving the same thing to a guest twice during their stay.  Our longer stays can sometimes challenge my creativity, or at least my list of current recipes, so I sometimes have to fly by the seat of my pants.  On one such occasion I needed a new way to serve bananas so I came up with a cream topping that became one of the most requested breakfast items around here ever after.  And, as many of you know, I don't really work with recipes - I just throw stuff in a bowl and then name it - so the measurements will be approximate but it's a pretty forgiving sauce.

1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
2 cups heavy whipping cream (or half and half or milk or vanilla yogurt)

Put dry ingredients into a deep bowl and whisk until blended.  Continue whisking while adding heavy cream (or other liquid).  Whisk until thoroughly blended and to desired thickness.  Warning: if using heavy cream the mixture will continue to thicken as it sits so make it just before use.  Pour over sliced bananas, strawberries, blueberries and slurp it up.  Can also be added to a food processor with any kind of pureed melon or strawberries for a great chilled breakfast soup.  Or if you only need a little bit of ginger cream for your fruit, pour the rest into custard cups for ginger ice cream.  Just put the custard cups on a sheet pan or cutting board, slide into the freezer and repeat the slurping step several hours later.  Enjoy!

I'll hope that the photo issue clears itself up overnight.  Grrrrrr....

Fairbanks House

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


Jane and Keith had a beautiful elopement ceremony with us last night and I was going to load their photo then, but the batteries died on their camera so I loaned them mine to use so that they could capture their champagne toast, cake cutting and the downing of the chocolate covered strawberries.  Now that I have the camera back, their friends back home can see that they did, in fact, tie the knot.  Just for you guys, I'll load a few more photos of them onto our Facebook page.  Just click on the Facebook link to the left to get to them.  And why not sign up to be fans while you're there?  You never know what last-minute special will show up there...  Congratulations Jane and Keith.  We're honored that you selected us for your elopement.

Fairbanks House

Monday, March 8, 2010

Garden Show Mother

I forgot to include this photo of Jan yesterday and she's too important to leave out.  Not only is she the mother of the inaugural Amelia Island Garden Show, but she's the mother of the Saturday Farmers Market that goes on every week of the year except Shrimp Festival weekend.  She has done unbelievable things for the community and we're all grateful.  And she sure can wear a lei.  Thanks Jan.  Another job well done.  FYI, she's standing in front of the Reflections of Nature booth where I purchased my butterfly plants.

Fairbanks House

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Amelia Island Garden Show At Last

Ahhhhhh... finally.... the garden show.  Lots and lots of color, options, pretty and available.  The show was successful beyond anyone's wildest imagination - just what our economy, psyche and yards needed right now.  I focused on eco-friendly drought tolerant plants native to our area and ended up with some tropical sage and a locally produced form of goldenrod.  I'll be putting them in our butterfly garden out back.  I love that most drought-tolerant plants attract butterflies.  Almost like there's some sort of plan...

Handily I ran into my neighbor Monty and his mother, my friend, Marcia and he gallantly guarded some of my purchases while I contemplated spending more money or entering the butterfly exhibit that they'd just attended.  Happily for everyone, I chose to spend more money so that we can have our own butterflies.  Thanks. neighbor.

Fairbanks House

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Spring Flowers Found

I found some more color.  I actually found hanging baskets yesterday for the front porch.  But I'll be loading up this weekend at the garden show.  Can't wait.  Can you tell?

Fairbanks House

Wednesday, March 3, 2010


I stopped the new restaurant on Eighth Street, Merge, to pick up a menu and loved every bit of what I was smelling from the kitchen.  They were preparing the chicken for the evening dinner crowd and I was tempted to grab a fork and muscle my way back there for a sample but my better angels prevailed and I just took the menu and promised to tell everyone about them.  Their name was inspired by their fusion approach to cooking:  a merger of various cultures to create a unique blend of their own.  If the chicken is any indication, the merge(r) will be a success.  We thank them for their investment in the community and wish them much success - and a website.

Fairbanks House

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Spring Color

Well maybe the garden centers don't have anything for me to plant right now but I found my neighbor, Peg, walking up Sixth Street sporting some mighty fine spring color of her own.  Thanks Peg.  You got me one day closer to the Amelia Island Garden Show.  By the way, it wasn't raining when I saw you so I know that the show of color was just for me.

Fairbanks House

Monday, March 1, 2010

Amelia Island Garden Show

On a beautiful sunny, blue-skied, 60 degree day today, all that I wanted to do was plant pretty things.  So I went to garden center after garden center and couldn't find any to buy.  They've all gotten completely spooked by the winter from who-knows-where and have refused to stock anything that might die yet.  So I'm really looking forward to the Amelia Island Garden Show this weekend because they'll be loaded with all kinds of things to fulfill that fantasy of mine.  Sadly, I have time to plant this week, not so much next week.  So I guess that hanging baskets will have to suffice - or lots of plants that I keep watering util I have time to get them in the ground.  Reeeeally looking forward to some more color in the yard.  The pansies and camelias are ready for some reinforcements.  See you this weekend at the show.

Fairbanks House