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To say that our weather this winter has been unpredictable is a bit of an understatement. Our weather forecasters, try as they might, get it wrong more often than right. One part of the weekend weather they did get sort of right--the weather Friday night was a mess, thus, as I mentioned in my last post, the crowds were thin.

Then too, I think most folks were plum sick of going out, what with New Year's Eve on Monday night.  One person who was there was Thomas Thorspecken. As my friend Todd Fox and I were chatting, we glanced down the walkway, wondering who was that man sketching away. Well, take a look at his blog, and you'll see who he is. Apparently he goes somewhere most every night, chronicling the arts and culture in our city. Eventually he made his way into my room, and after a little prodding, he showed me the piece he'd just completed. Yup--me and Todd standing by my doorway--it must have been my orange jacket that attracted him. He mentioned that he'd come one other time and was watching the place grow. So are we! I am so disappointed that our far-flung loved ones did not see the place while visiting. Please come in February if you have the time--that's February 1, to be exact. I'm pretty confident you won't be disappointed. Remember all those photos I had on the table? Well, some of them ended up here:
More news on FAVO as the month progresses.

According to the forecasters, the weekend weather was to be, in the words of Angela, "grim." Make that word. Anyway, because that was to be the case, I decided to skip my markets, using the time instead to get a fresh start for the new year. Saturday couldn't have been more beautiful for most of the day. Go figure.

I spent about an hour and a half with Roger, something I used to do with greater frequency, ordering all the canvases for the fast approaching show in New Smryna Beach. He brought up all my statistics, urging me to order the winners, which I did for the MOST part. Some new stuff, unproven, but hopefully they will find a home. While there he told me we were now over 7,000 prints. How about that?

While making pizza dough Saturday evening, I had a visitor. Not the people kind, but one of the cardinals, who I must say, were shy about coming around when the family was here.
He stayed there for the longest time--as in at least 20 minutes--just looking around. I know how long it was because my camera records the time I take a photo. Typically, when I stand by the door, camera in hand, he flies away immediately. The wonders of nature never cease to amaze....

The pizza was pretty good by the way.

It never did rain on Saturday, well, maybe a few sprinkles over night, but nothing to speak of. Then, Sunday morning it was foggy as can be. I went out on my bike and because my sons were just there, they will appreciate this photo of the lake lot.
If not for the ducks you would hardly know there is a lake! Many days I ride down Bliss Street. I'm always intrigued by this house, as most of them, while small, are neatly kept. The foggy morning makes it seem even "grimmer."
I wonder what it is like inside, don't you?

My office was a big fat mess, needing some serious straightening out, but before I did that, I wrote a new, "more like me," artist statement, AND new labels for the baskets. Bruce actually put them together, and this time he had them laminated.
 Never, for a moment, think I could run this little business without Bruce! For years now, I've clumped subjects together under a loose category system I dreamed up. Now, instead of me telling folks, there are flowers and animals in this basket, I'll say look at the label will you? Not really, I'll just point them to "Nature." You might be amazed by the number of people who ask me how much a print costs, despite the clear signage. We are now ready for the next year of selling, or almost anyway. A new and improved tablecloth is next on the agenda. :)

Baxter enjoying the sunshine Sunday afternoon:
Not one drop of rain fell. He is still sitting funny, but otherwise seems to be doing well thanks to Bruce giving him his medicine.

While riding on Sunday I stopped by Eric's house to thank him for the recent tour he gave my family. Graciously he offered oranges, and yesterday morning I squeezed them while chatting with Nancy.
It is so pretty isn't it? Nothing like fresh squeezed orange juice!
Another quintessential Florida image! What's going on here? I couldn't help myself--I love me some palms. Not as much as orange juice, but I can't imagine life without them, for sure.

As I was riding along Bumby Avenue I heard an unfamiliar bird sound. Scanning the trees on the other side of the road I saw a bright patch of red amongst the bare branches.
I was very surprised to see this Pileated Woodpecker eating the seed pods rather than pounding away on a large tree trunk! Stopping her car in the middle of the road, a woman asked what I was photographing. Pointing it out, she claimed I made her day. Nice.

I've found a spot for my darling new bird house, a Christmas gift from my honey:
The weather here may be unpredictable, but I suspect it is a far cry nicer than most places. In the winter we are always grateful to live in Florida--the summer not as much, but one thing I've learned in my 59 years is, that you cannot have it all!

Another state with nice weather, California, the home of my flickr/fb/blog friend, Elena Gerli, who took some fantastic photographs I think you'll enjoy seeing. If you have ever wondered what the Rose Bowl floats look like up close, check them out. Beautiful, beautiful!

More first of the year work on tap for today....

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