Exterior of Addison on Amelia

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Jet Ski Tour With FlyingFishFun.com

Shannon and I took a jet ski eco-tour with FlyingFishFun.com yesterday and had the most fun we have had in ages. Neither of us have ever ridden a waverunner before but it was easy to learn and great fun to drive. Tourguide George took us along the Amelia River to Cumberland Island with several stops along the way to watch the wildlife.

First stop was a sunken shrimp boat, one of the last wooden-hulled shrimp boats. Along the way to Cumberland Island we stopped and checked out a sea turtle, a tree full of egrets and a couple pods of dolphins. Then a quick trip up Beach Creek (or Go Really Fast Creek to people on jet skis) to see some wild horses and the ruins of Dungeness Mansion.

Equal parts educational eco-tour and having fun racing jet skis along the river. Definitely a tour worth taking. www.FlyingFishFun.com 904-310-5999

Whole lot of painting going on!

We are on Day 8 of “No Adult Supervision” at the Addison. That is what I call it when Shannon goes to Canada to visit family and I stay behind to run the inn. No adult supervision. Don’t worry, Lee, our Operations Manager, is here keeping me from accidently burning the house down.

So, what do we do when Shannon is gone for three weeks? Lee takes over the creative side of the kitchen and I continue to do what I am told to do. No real change there, the inn runs as usual.

We did close for 5 nights for a maintenance shutdown, typical for August which is one of our slower months. I’ve got our friends from Ace Painting repainting the smaller front building. It is only Wednesday but they are already talking about wrapping up and we should be good to greet our guests on Friday with a ladder-free courtyard.

I’ve taken advantage of the shutdown to refinish decks, paint outside furniture and do some other maintenance tasks that you just can’t do when there are guests in the house. I also get to do all of my own cooking, which I really enjoy. Clams and spaghetti tonight. Onions, garlic, sundried tomatoes, basil out of the garden, white wine and clams. A nice light dinner with leftovers for lunch tomorrow. My favorite kind of meal!

Fresh Fruit Tarts!

These fruit tarts are quickly becoming a guest favorite at the Addison. Lee bakes the pastry shells the day before. In the morning she fills the shells with home made pastry cream and fresh fruit and then tops it all with a fruit glaze. Delicious!

I just love that pastry cream.  Any cream left over quickly gets mixed with fresh fruit and becomes my breakfast.

Amelia Community Theatre 2016/2017 Season

Amelia Community Theatre (ACT) is finishing off their 35th anniversary season and has announced their 2016/2017 season production lineup.

Guests at the Addison attended the play These Two Couples Went To Italy on Friday night. The theatre itself is a great space that was built specifically for the theatre group. Our guests enjoyed the show immensely. This production runs through August 20th.

The 2016/2017 season starts with On Golden Pond in October. Other main productions include Ebenezer, Calendar Girls, Rabbit Hole, The Explorers Club and Avenue Q. A full schedule is on the Addison website’s “Events” page.

Another Happy Hour hit!

Another Happy Hour hit at the Addison!  Today we presented grilled naan bread topped with Lee’s homemade hummus, fresh tomatoes, roasted red peppers, slivered red onions and diced banana peppers.  Sprinkle a little fresh cilantro over the plate and you have a great, nutritious Happy Hour appetizer.

Christmas in July Concert

I had a craving for some nice fresh shrimp for dinner so took a walk down Ash Street towards Atlantic Seafood.  I heard live music down 3rd Street at the Green Turtle and thought I’d check it out.  What a crowd!
Local charity, Joy To The Children, was holding a Christmas in July fundraiser and the band they picked was perfect, full of local heroes and legends.  The man in the middle wearing the purple t-shirt and pSanta 2laying the bass is Ray, the original barefooted tree hugger that owns and operates Kayak Amelia. 
To his left, in the hat, is Hup, another local music legend.  Hup and Ray played together for years here on Amelia Island.  They even played at my son’s wedding festivities.  Hup is retired Navy and moved a few years ago up north somewhere.  He is back in town just for this concert. 
In the back, on the drums, is Dr. Hal London of London Medical Spa, located just a block from the Addison.  When Dr. Hal isn’t banging on his drums he is nipping, tucking, exfoliating, peeling and doing all kinds of other age defying treatments. 

Santa 1
Mr. and Mrs. Claus were there as well along with a team of reindeer clad volunteers accepting donations to the cause.  A big crowd turned out, the music was great and a good time was being had by all.
I eventually picked up the shrimp, nice and fresh from Charlie at Atlantic Seafood.  Shrimp stir fry tonight for dinner!   

Savory Hash Brown Muffins now on the menu!

These Hash Brown Muffins are the latest addition to the Addison’s Clean Plates menu.  These savory muffins are filled with hash browns, bacon, green onions and cheese.  Topped off with more bacon, green onions and whipped cream cheese they become a delightful start to breakfast. 

Lizards Looking For Love!

These little guys are everywhere this time of year.  We love the lizards.  They are not only entertaining but they eat bugs. 
This guy is demonstrating “looking fancy” in his quest to attract a mate.  This display of the inflatable under-chin sac is usually preceded by three pushups.  And that, my friend, is how you attract a mate.  Feats of strength (also one of the four pillars of Festivus) and a display of beauty.  Strong AND good looking. 
Life as a lizard isn’t all just attracting mates.  You have to stay away from those who will eat you, too.  There is a heron that walks the sidewalks of Ash Street hunting lizards for his lunch.  He loves the palm trees in front of the Addison as they are full of lizards that are easy to reach. 

Amelia Tavern Opens!

Tavern 1

We took a short walk yesterday to the newly opened Amelia Tavern and were quite impressed!

This tavern has been years in the making. O’Kanes Irish Pub used to be in this spot. When it closed, the new owners found structural issues that resulted in the entire building, right down to the floor slab, being removed. The only part that they couldn’t remove was the historic wall on the right side as it is a shared wall with the shop next door.

The new building is really nice, bright and airy. A skylight over the bar provides plenty of light and the space is used well. The front 10 feet is a patio open to the sidewalk and then through the front door where you see the central bar. Tables line both sides of the tavern. In the back on the left is the brewery and on the right is the kitchen.

The brewery itself isn’t functioning yet as they wait on government licenses. We had a couple of draft beer (nice selection) and shared a couple of small plates. The bagel bites with dipping sauces were good and the ribs were great, off the bone but not overcooked as you often get.

Another great restaurant in Fernandina Beach!

Keep Those Postcards Coming In!

There is something about postcards that I just love. Anybody can tweet, text, share a photo or e-mail you from somewhere but receiving a postcard means that someone has made an effort to say “Hi!”.

I used to travel internationally a lot. Lots and lots, to places that aren’t on the top of your “bucket list” of places to go. Writing 50 or 60 postcards to friends and family whilst stuck in a hotel room or a labor camp out in the middle of nowhere is a nice way to whittle away an evening. And it wasn’t easy. First you have to find postcards (found a lovely set of 1950 vintage postcards in a book shop in Yuhzno, Russia), find a post office and figure out the postage, often in a country where English is not the first language. Blogging moved in to replace postcards but I still found, wrote, stamped and mailed them. I still do.

I used to wonder what happened to all of the postcards that I had sent. Then I visited my grandmother who, at the age of 103, was living in an assisted living home. There, on the wall above her bed, were pinned all of the cards I had sent her over the years. Maybe not a hundred but close.

I keep all of the postcards that I receive (some in attached photo). The most recent is from Jenny, a previous housekeeper at the Addison. She has moved on and is now an au pair in Basel, France, looking after three small children. To me, it is always nice to hear from friends and family through a postcard. At least it is one piece of mail that isn’t a bill and it is a piece of mail that you can hang on to and keep.

My current address is:

Bob c/o Addison on Amelia
614 Ash Street
Fernandina Beach, FL 32034

Keep those postcards coming in!