Monday, August 31, 2009


Did some antique shopping in Springfield this past weekend with James and his sister, Ann. We hit up Commercial street in North Springfield where we found some interesting furniture pieces and neat stores. I feel it's necessary to bore you with a little history lesson brought to you by the public library -

The Atlantic and Pacific Railroad, Springfield's first railroad, came to Springfield in 1870. It actually bypassed the town and laid its tracks a mile north of "old" Springfield into the "new" town of North Springfield. A commercial district sprang up around the railroad depot and the street was thus name "Commercial."

blah, blah, blah....picture time!

The fabulous store Red Velvet Art with it's many handmade items suitable for children and trendy adults

The back of Red Velvet Art, which became my photography studio during our brief stay

This Historic Firehouse garden is used for small outdoor weddings

I'm obsessed with sunflowers this year

Okay, I'm sorry, but this is a terrible piece of "art"

Vintage find for only $85!!!! AHHHHHH!!!

This gray chair was only $35! If only we needed another chair...

$200 bones for this baby!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Mass Desctuction

We live rather close to Lindenwood University and when it gets time for us to move we will be using our home as rental property for students. Recently, Lindenwood has been demolishing all their rental property near our house, which is good and bad at the same time. They took out tons of really old shady trees, but the homes were so old and ugly that they really needed to go. We aren't sure what's going up in its place - rumors of a post office, grocery store, Target, new road construction, etc. have been floating around. Our Realtor has sworn it will only increase the value of our home, but we are just a bit nervous. If Lindenwood can keep it looking like its beautiful campus (tree lined with all brick dorms and facility's) it will be amazing.
Aerial view of the campus and our home that I took recently. Double click image for large view, as I've circled our home.

The magnification trees being pulled up

We went a explored many of the homes after they had cleaned them out. Some had really nice hardwood floors and other details that I was surprised they didn't try to salvage.

We really hope they lay down some grass seed

I wish I had more before and after pictures of the homes, but you can see the entrance to the University from this pic.

Lindenwood's campus

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Ugly Smugly

To cover up some unsightly meter and cable cable boxes James and I used the fast growing and hardy English Ivy. After making a simple planter box to fit on the floor we drilled screws into the siding. Wire was then wrapped around each screw in a pattern. We planted some ivy , eased it on the wire and called it a day. We can't wait to see what it will look like when it grows!

Music Man

Man, my hands are still sore from this project, but it was so worth. James had purchased a Baldwin piano last year in need of some repairs. After sanding down the whole piano he spray painted it black, but never got around to sanding and painting the piano bench. The blond wood piano bench stood out like a sore thumb against the black beauty. Something had to be done.

After sanding down the whole item we painted the inside a bright cherry red

The whole project took about 3 cans of black spray paint

Jack inspecting the "new" item

Final Piece

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Evening Cocktails

To my mom's reminder, I've haven't been back to my hometown (Springfield, MO) as much as I should. I thought that moving to a bigger city would create many culinary adventures, but I am still missing a couple of things....

Fedora for their fondue
Mudlounge for their martini's
Ocean Zen for amazing sushi
Springfield Brewery Co. for their red quesadilla

Well....I didn't have any red dye, I can't make sushi, and I wasn't in the mood for fondue - so I made martini's! Plus it gave me an excuse to use my James Bond inspired gold martini shaker. Which pretty much rocks.

1 shot vodka
1 shot buttershot liqueur
2 parts Kahlua
bit of milk
(would also be really good with some added coffee)
shaken, not stirred.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Botanical Garden Wine Tasting

The Missouri Botanical Garden is celebrating their 150th anniversary with Garden Nights! Every Thursday you can sample wine and microbreweries from 5-9pm, as well as stroll the different gardens. We went this Thursday during an unusual 75 degree night. It was probably one of our most favorite date nights. With a microbrewery I.P.A and Spicy Blonde in hand we stayed for 3 hours and took what seems like 500 inspirational photos for our own backyard.

For part of 2006, the Missouri Botanical Garden featured "Glass in the Garden", with glass sculptures by Dale Chihuly placed throughout the garden. Four pieces were purchased to remain at the gardens.

Herb Garden

Japanese Garden

Victorian Garden

Not too bad for a camera phone, right?

A real flower clock

Peppers used around a boarder - AWESOME!

yeah, we are 'that couple'

Dr. Seuss plants

Thursday, August 20, 2009


Okay, so thank you New York Times for letting the world know of our dying city -

"The United States Census of 1950 reported roughly 850,000 people living in St. Louis; today the number is around 350,000."

Now besides that somber news, they did report on a new public art project that just opened up downtown. Citygarden, a 2.9-acre sculpture park features 24 works by artists including Fernand L├ęger, Tony Smith, Jim Dine and Bernar Venetworks. The park was financed by a nonprofit organization, Gateway Foundation. It cost between $25 million and $30 million, which does not include the art collection. Well, with newspaper clipping in hand James, myself, and my grandparents all went for a drive to check it out.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Puttin' on the Ritz

James and I went to WV on Saturday to drop off his boss at their headquarters. Before heading to the lake for some much needed sun, we popped in on James' bosses recent project - The Ritz Theater in Hinton, WV. It seats 280 on the floor and 40 in the balcony. This old theater (coming up on its 80th anniversary) was needing some updates so it will be closed for the past couple of months for renovation. I wish I had some before shots, but all I can say it's really a night and day difference.
Large stage in front of screen that will be used for live concerts
Original light fixtures
Carpet still needing to be chosen and put in

The outside will also be getting a makeover soon

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

New River Gorge

I think James and I were in need of a small vacation so last weekend we had a daycation in West Virginia by hanging out all afternoon in the sun at the New River Gorge. The New River Gorge near Hinton, West Virginia is a white water river, flowing northward through deep canyons. And don't let the name fool you - the New River is among the oldest rivers on the continent. This national rivers park encompasses over 70,000 acres of land.
The New River Gorge Bridge at a height of 876 feet makes it the highest vehicular bridge in the Americas, and the second-highest in the world. Before the 2004 opening of the Millau Viaduct in France, it was the highest in the world.

We got a pontoon boat and a wave runner

James the River Captain

Oh yeah, that's living.