The weekend in St. Louis was PERFECT!!!! Did you ever have a weekend that was for the most part unplanned, but where everything you did was touched with happiness and the perfect moments? Well, that was this weekend for Jane and I when we traveled down to Missouri. We left the Chicago area around 3 and drove for approximately 4-1/2 hours to reach St. Charles, MO. What a beautiful area! We drove to the historic section of town along the Missouri River. We strolled through the area looking for the perfect place to eat dinner.
We found this charming place and ate outside. It was so relaxing. They had a water fountain going. By then it was dark out, and the restaurant was lit and it was like fairy land.
Jane tried some of the local wine.
Sophisticate that I am, I had diet pop out of a plastic glass!!!
I had to take a picture of my new shoes on the cobblestone street!!! I love to take pictures of cool shoes on vacation! These are the coolest shoes...I first saw them on Lesley Riley's blog and kind of filed them away in my mental lockbox. When on vacation with Noreen in Washington we stumbled on them again, but they did not have my size. These are kind of hard shoes to get as they are from Spain and are in European sizes. After chasing around a bit I found I could order them from Nordstrom's and then did so, even though they were kind of expensive. I just felt that I had to have these shoes for the summer! I have never owned red shoes (well at least I have not since I was a baby) and I just think they are so cool!
St. Charles, MO street light on a hot summer night.
Okay folks, here we are on Saturday morning. First stop was Cracker Barrel for a fantastic breakfast of Eggs in a Basket with Hashbrown Casserole (it is the best!), then off to Starbucks. Being fueled for the morning we were then off to our destination!!!! The place I have been wanting to go to for years!!!
RED LEAD PAPERWORKS!!!!!!!!!!!!
We arrived before the store even opened!!!! I was peering through the windows and it looked like heaven to me!
Hope Sharon and Chris don't mind, but I had to use some of their outdoor decorations as props for this picture!
I did not take any pictures in the store, because I wanted to preserve all of the "state secrets" that lie within. Just picture me looking through the store, hyperventilating, running from this area to that area, Jane asking me if I was alright and me saying that I was just overwhelmed. Repeat this scene x 25!!!!! If you can, you must go to Red Lead it is just so perfect. The samples are so inspiring! The selection of paper is stellar! The Red Lead word stamps and their image stamps are amazing! Go to their website and see!!! You can order some of your own!
After a few minutes of looking around it was time to get busy in class. Magic time!!!! We met THE NICEST ladies in class!!!! Everyone was so warm and welcoming to us. We chatted, laughed, created, and bonded in the friendship that happens when you are all doing something you love.
We decided to all go out to lunch!!!!! Chris and Sharon had to stay behind and mind the store, so we had to go without them. We took a quick lunch break and went to a fabulous local Mexican restaurant with a very clever name, Nacho Mama!!!!
Here we are gathered around the table. There is Maggie, Phyllis, Patty, Linda, and Jane!!! Okay, get this, if you know me, you know I live for Mexican food....well I could barely finish my one steak taco!! I was giddy! I was so excited to talk with everyone!!! Such lovely ladies! I was really wishing I lived down in Missouri! The people there are wonderful and the area is just beautiful.
The thing that really sent me into overdrive was that Maggie and I discovered we both had the same shoes!!!!!! You know, the ones from Spain that are kind of hard to get!!!! We had them in the same size even!! When we discovered that bond we really started getting crazy with excitement. It was hilarious! We could hardly speak we were so excited!!!
Here I am at the end of a most wonderful day at Red Lead with Chris and Sharon!!!! They are sisters, best buddies, and co-owners of the store! They are both talented artists and just the sweetest pair of gals around! They let us hang out in the store all day (except for our lunch break!) and ask questions, shop, laugh, tell stories, and for the last hour and a half of the day Chris gave us a private tutorial about different techniques. In fact, if you go to their blog there is a demo on Tranz-It starring my loud mouth and Jane's fingers!!!! It is totally hilarious!
On Saturday night we had the great good fortune of hanging out with one of our new buddies, Phyllis! She met us for dinner at Fitz's which is a local root beer bottling place and restaurant. Wonderful place!! Then we went over to her house to check out her studio and play. See what I mean about friendly people!!! We had a blast at Phyllis' beautiful home!!!
We were going from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.!! That is rare for me! I was not tired one little bit because every moment was so special! Everytime we turned around something exciting was happening! I cannot even convey in words to you what a special day it was! Thank you to all of our new Missouri friends! You women are the best!!!!
21 hours ago