The table top that I'm sharing with you today, sadly isn't mine. Isn't it a feast for the eyes? A blogger's dream? You are looking at what you first see when you open the door to State Street Market in Alton, IL. Do you see those place card holders? Tiny pots with bird nests and they are packaged in cardboard egg cartons...too cute! I walked in the door and I know that owner Kary Lockwood heard my *sigh* as I looked around. When I told her that my blogging friends would love her shop, she gave me permission to take pictures...you all would like her!
This gives you a better idea of just how many pretty things there are in Kary's shop. The feeling is very "French inspired" with table tops of bottles, jars and various home goods and gifts. She also carries artisan breads, organic free-trade coffee, domestic and imported wines, craft beers and gourmet foods. As bj @ sweet nothings would say..."oh honey"!
I just love it when the owner of a shop is willing to actually talk to me. I felt very welcomed as I came in the door.
We came home from Kary's shop with the most delicicous soft Companion Bavarian Pretzels. They are made in St. Louis and Kary has them fresh on weekends. Yum.
Alton, IL is a river city of very old buildings and homes, steep streets and interesting architecture.
This is the ceiling of an empty room in a building that houses various shops. I had to stick the camera through a gate and point up. I'm not sure if you can tell how pink the trim is and how ornate the ceiling is. If only walls could talk. Alton has several antique shops, from the dirty and junky to the elegant and beautiful.
We also enjoyed a fun, crazy lunch at Fast Eddie's Bon Air. We saw Fast Eddie's on the Food Network. It is a huge bar with delicious, cheap food and a huge crowd. You walk in and place your order (shrimp-29 cents each, half pound burgers-99 cents, steak on a stick-2.99, homemade brats-99 cents, basket of fries-99 cents)...it was a very busy place and well worth the stop.
We left Alton and drove on down the river road past the Piasa Bird on the cliff. You can read about the legend of the Piasa Bird here.
We drove through the village of Elsah. It is a darling village of quaint homes, skinny streets and also the home of Principia College, a small Christian Science College.
How cute is this little house?
We ended our drive at Pere Marquette State Park in Grafton, IL.
The lodge is rustic and beautiful, the grounds are obviously pretty
now...and simply breathtaking in the fall.
We did stop at an estate sale in Elsah. It was a couple who were selling a lifetime of things for a move to California. They had beautiful antique furniture, vintage baby clothes, tons of Lenox China, crystal and sterling silver pieces. I was drolling over so many things...but, I restrained myself.