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Photo: 'Spring is Here'

By Howard B. Owens


Sarah Wessel, in Alexander, submitted this photo with a note that said, "Jasmine and Anabelle’s house. Spring is here."

Country Hill Spring Open House

By Lisa Ace

Join us this weekend for our SPRING OPEN HOUSE!

Friday, March 23, 10am-6pm
Saturday, March 23, 10am-4pm

30% OFF Any 1 regular priced items storewide
FREE Lanyard with an $50 purchase!

Country Hill Home
Accessories & Gifts
11119 W. Park Street, Pavilion, NY 14525

Event Date and Time

Spring perennial wildflower talk at Richmond library hosted by Batavia Herb Society

By Lisa Ace

in memory of JEAN SEAMANS
Location: Batavia Richmond Library
Date: April 2, 2019
Time: 7:00 pm

Event Date and Time

Photo: Chilly spring morning

By Billie Owens


Here's a photo taken in Genesee County this chilly spring morning and submitted by reader Jason Smith

Photos: First catch of spring

By Howard B. Owens

Nothing says spring more than baseball.

Today, in Oakfield, I came across Ryan Byrnes and Joe Colon, both originally from Elba, having a first catch of the season.

They said nothing felt better after a long winter than tossing a ball around.


By Maureen Davis

We are ready for spring

By Howard B. Owens

We are ready for spring: Everytime I drive past this sign outside the Ace Hardware on Route 19 in LeRoy, I wonder: Is the store saying,"We've got all the products you'll need this spring -- we're ready for you"? Or, are they saying, "Man, glad winter's over!"? Or both?

First Day of Spring !!

By Mark Wiatrowski

Every year for the last 5 or 6 years, I have a little ritual that I do on the first day of Spring. I heard that on this day, you can take a raw egg and stand it up on end and it will stay. I tried it and every year since it has worked!!! It has something to do with the position of the Earth at this time of year, I really can't remember the details. All I know is with a little bit of patience, you can make an egg stand up on its bottom !!

Try it for yourself !!     Happy First Day of Spring !!

Conversations with Calliope- Artist's Date

By Joseph Langen


(Rock Waiting for Spring- Leroy, NY))
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JOE: Good morning Calliope.
CALLIOPE: Just barely.
JOE: You mean just barely morning or just barely good?
CALLIOPE: Just barely morning.
JOE: Don't pout. I have had a great morning. I was up early to read the paper, write my morning pages and take a walk.
CALLIOPE: Glad you are enjoying it.
JOE: I'm on a roll from yesterday.
JOE: I mentioned that I was reading Julia Cameron's Vein of Gold.
CALLIOPE: You did.
JOE: One of her suggestions was a weekly "Artist's Date."
CALLIOPE: Did you have one?
JOE: Yesterday I set out on a journey with my camera and found quite a few interesting images within a mile of my house. I realized that there were probably many other places within walking distance.
CALLIOPE: Is that where you were this morning?
JOE: Yes. I was scouting new photo sites and walked through a local cemetery where several people I knew are buried. I'm looking forward to more adventures. Talk with you on Monday.

Poll: Predicting winter's end...

By Philip Anselmo

Punxsutawney Phil climbed out of his burrow on Gobbler's Knob yesterday to find his shadow and thus predict for us another six weeks of winter. From the Washington Post:

According to legend, if a hibernating animal wakes up and casts a shadow on Feb. 2, winter will last six more weeks. If there is no shadow, spring will supposedly come early.

Early American farmers relied on groundhogs, though there is no scientific evidence that the animal has any weather-predicting skills.

What do you think?

Another six weeks of winter...?
( polls)

Reflection and Time

By Lori Ann Santini

     There has been alot of discussion this week over issues and incidents. Clearly, opinions have differed. Some in support and some against.  People in this country have the blessing of freedom of speech. Sometimes we take it for granted. When the storm of comments wained, one thing became clear. We need to focus on the important things. Our health, our loves and our life.

     I had time to take a breathe and plan my attack. Instead of wonder how much worse this could get, I changed direction. I went to the local stores and searched for plant seeds. Spring was about to come to my little house. The weather might have different plans but I didn't care. This is a way to focus and plan.  To plot where every plant would go and to wait for the results.

     My kids are an integral part of the planning. First, are there truly kid friendly plants out there? The answer of course is yes. Kid friendly isn't the issue actually. Peas, carrots, corn and the occassional fresh tomato meet with the occassional "Mom can I have another one?" I  have concerns about their welfare however as I imagine  my 17 month old re-inacting Godzilla scenes through the rows of plants.  Things are going to get crushed like the city blocks leveled in the movies.

     For the girls in my life, the pick was flowers. "Mom can we get this one?" or  "OHHHHHHH, thats soooooooo beautiful."  I prefer the sunny disposition of sunflowers myself.(I can't lie, I love johnny jumps ups and crocuses too.) They are rugged and friendly. These guys could survive my son and his antics. For my son, I picked peas and beans. I have never met a kid more crazy about his vegetables. This kid could eat a whole can of green beans at one sitting if given half a chance.

     Just imagine his delight when they are fresh from the garden. Picked as the dew drips from the leaves. Mmmmm. I can taste it now.  The peas will never make it to the kitchen.

     Seeds are a cheap fix to anyones woes. A couple dollars can buy you healthy snacks that will last all summer long. Especially if they happen to be in patio pots filled with Cherry Tomatoes. Yum.

     This year we are going for some larger and more exciting prospects. We have a huge lawn now. My plans for the garden will probably  start small but will end up  taking over an acre or so. Just kidding!! I want to try potatoes, bright lights swiss chard, corn and pumpkins. I have made attempts in the past to try some of these but I never had the right soil or location. This year it will be perfect.

    I can see that the hose will need to be ready and available at all times. Bath time for the babes. I'm not talking plants either. In the past my  daughters have been knee high in the soil and mud. Now I have three that I need to keep  out of trouble. Guess what, the hose will be alot easier.

     I look forward to the joy on their faces as the seedlings emerge from the ground. We will care for them, nurture them, and weed them. ( I have a feeling it will only be me weeding them though.) The kids will rig devices to protect the new plants from the rabbits and other critters. Then we will wait. Wait for the first of the crops. We will share them with friends and neighbors. Ahh. I feel better already.

P.S. Does anyone have a rotor tiller I can borrow? :) This is going to take some help.

At Peace Again

By Patrick D. Burk

My thoughts came to rest the other day....Sunday, the day that the lawn people showed up. I would like to say finally, but that would mean I was sensing some sort of impatience...and I wasn't. It is always a great sign of spring and nice weather when I stop worrying how to get all the winter sludge and branches out of the yard and the lawn raked and the grass seed spread before the neighbors and my wife start to complain. She had already made a foray into the yard to pick up sticks, the proverbial "hidden under the snow garbage" and other messes that winter covers. I did a cursory once around as well....but when the lawn people show up.... I feel a certain sense of ease and comfort. It is then that I know that I am freed from my cares and woes. I never mow or rake...I let the experienced men do that. I let the lawn people do it. Just think, what other profession do we do ourselves that entitles pushing a heavy machine around while giant blades spin inches away from your appendages.

There are none. Why I day dream so much that the neighbors indeed should be frightened if they ever see me pushing a lawn mower.... I would become public enemy number one. Safety of pets and animals would be in jeopardy. Could you imagine if I had the chance to drive one? There could be a whole series of horror movies written about my exploits...I can see it now "Lawnmower Man's Revenge", Lawnmower Man's Revenge II"....just keep going and going...and.... Now to make matters even more difficult are the neighbors who mow thier lawn a certain way so that it looks nice and green and groomed. If I want nice and green and groomed I'll take up that game with pockets and balls played on a table or just continue to play golf badly and more often. I can't compete with green and groomed? I am just lucky it does not look like cow pasture. My lawn people take care of that. We have had the same lawn people for quite some time. They are two local kids....I actually have known them since birth. Now I trust them with powerful machines with whirling razor blades and wheels because they are the professionals....they have the knowledge...they have been doing this thier whole life. It is a family business.... green and groomed is in thier family....cow pastures are in mine. So they showed up and started to work. I made my appearance outside and pointed to a couple of areas of my concern (just so that they don't think I am totally detached and uncaring) and smiled, shook thier hands and thanked them once again for bringing to me that certain peace of mind. Lawn worries can go away. ....Yawn.... Time for a long summer's nap.... AND THEN IT HAPPENS.... "You know Patrick", she says as my eyes are almost to a thin slit of slumber...."We need to paint the house this year!" DANG....More worries....... the mind starts to whirl...paint...I hate to paint...I don't paint.... I sit and read and have fun and....and...... Well who knows. Hey.... Maybe the lawn people paint? There....that is better...Time for a nap....Eyes shut..... Ah peace again.

Batavia.... My own response to our frozen tundra

By Patrick D. Burk

How do most people spend the early spring in Batavia? Why they spruce up thier yards, plant bulbs and make a general, post haste rush to the out of doors and into the reasonably seasonal breath of warmth. This is a result of the more than tedious length of cold, numbing weather with grey skies, dirty snow and piles on delivered but unread Pennysavers that lay on our lawns, long lost by the ever increasing cover of snow and ice. Until a couple of weeks ago that was the description of my yard in Batavia at least. An environment that is more connected to Siberia than most would want to think. It appears our favorite and most prevalent plant, the dandelion, is the one successful thing that stays bright green year round. Before the snow was totally gone, we had bright yellow flowers popping up all over..... and we poison them with weed killers because they dot our ever perfect, blade precisioned lawns. I welcome them. In fact, yellow is my favorite color and it is so good to see them and the other assorted flowers bud away and bloom as soon as the warmer breezes grace our tundra. You know this place, my favorite little city in the whole world, Batavia, is where I call home. My wife and I chose to move here to raise our children and to be in a wonderful safe and caring community. We have great schools, interesting things to do and wonderful neighbors. We could use a few more small specialty stores, maybe a nice department store and oh least one more pizzeria. But this is my home and I love it. Call me wierd, but keep the rest of the world, little old Batavia suits me just fine. Recently on a short trip over the border to Canada, or as my wife and I think of it as, The Mother Land (Both or our mother's were Canadian), I realized once again how wonderful it is to travel so near and see so many wonders. As many times as I have peered at Niagara Falls or watched the birds and the black swans in Stratford, Ontario, I still love to get off the Thruway at our exit that says home...or in our case Batavia. It is with purpose that I write this today. First, it is my first BLOG in the Batavian and it certainly will not be my last, BUT...perhaps my second reason is more succint. My second reason is this....When you find yourself getting blue and grey over the snow and the cold. When you see the mounds and piles of dirt covered hills in our plaza parking lots. Even when the local Pennysavers are piled at the end of your driveway like they conveniently know where they are supposed to end up anyway in that little blue box, I remember one thing. It is the people here that are beautiful... It is the friends and the opportunities and the families. Give me my little predictable slice of the Siberian Tundra of Western New York anyday...Bright Blooming Dandelions and the smiles of my friends and neighbors are all that matters and BATAVIA is bursting with them. So a quick smile to a friend, a nod of the head and a wave to a person jogging and walking make my day. Oh and I lay off the weed killer and let the dandelions get big, yellow and bright.... it is the least I can do...

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