Jul 13, 2007

Meet My New Neighbors!

Welcome to my new neighborhood!
Well, I am almost moved - not quite complete, but getting there. As I shuffle my inventory, office equipment, workshop, design studio, photo studio and personal living items to six different locations, I am determined to find time to get out and meet my new neighbors!

Okay, first, I must tell you about a little shop called Francesca's located in South City St. Louis. The address is 5400 Nottingham. Actually, we are really on Macklind Ave - a very up and coming district. I have a small presence in this little co-op which is ran by eight dealers. We are open only Friday and Saturdays from 10-4pm. My local customers may stop by and get the usual Elizabeth House items such as baby clothes, soaps, lavender and candles. These items will be available on line as well once my online store is up and running. The other dealers carry a variety of items from retro to painted furniture, to fun flea-market finds....please stop by!

I just want to share a few photos of my new space...

Signage! I get to hang up my sign and no one is taking me to court! :-)

Yes, I am still custom designing baby crib bedding. This set, which is made of silk and chenille is $575. It includes a ruffled bumper pad, dust ruffle, diaper bag, and blanket. If interested, or you would like your own custom set, please just email me at Elizabeth House.
I would like you to meet some of my neighbors just a block away on Macklind Ave. If you haven't been in this area of town in a while, you really need to see all that is going on! First, one of my favorite new spots is a fabulous coffee house called Murdoch Perk. The owner, Stephanie Seemiller, is just about the hardest working business owner you will find. I am all for supporting women business owners. And it is easy to do when the business is top notch.

I LOVE her crepes! And, she has the best gooey butter cookies in town - I promise! Oh, yes, the coffee is wonderful too. The interior is nicely designed with stained cement floors, fireplace and free wireless Internet! She also has a wonderful deck on which to eat her scrumptious Belgian waffles or Chipolte Turkey sandwich or Asian Chicken Crepe....okay, I need to stop now and call in an order - I just made myself hungry. What do I really love to get on the run? A naked crepe - yup, just a hot crepe she cooks up for me and and I roll it up and munch on it while driving to my next appointment.

Another little gem on Macklind Ave is yet another, woman-owned business. It is St. Louis' first and only Green General Store called, Home Eco. Its owner, Terry Winkelmann, along with Phil Judd, have created a store that is so environmentally friendly, you will find yourself looking for the nearest tree to hug after you leave. Do you ever feel that recycling your paper, glass and plastic is just not enough sometimes? Well, visit Home Eco and your guilty conscious will be set free! The store carries alternative fiber clothing, locally made and Fair Trade gifts, Beeswax and Soy Candles, natural flooring, renewable energy products and zero VOC paints and stains.

After you are done saving the environment at Home Eco, go ahead and treat yourself and cross the street to Manzo Importing Company, owned by the Manzo family since 1956 but has been in this location off Macklind since 1967! This wonderful grocer imports food products from Italy, Greece, and the Middle East. Pete, one of the owners and brothers of the business, is very friendly and loves to share what he knows about his merchandise - which is a lot! If you are looking for authentic Greek olives, or 15 varieties of Italian olive oil, speciality meats, cheeses or just want a deli sandwich, you must stop in! I live only a block or so away which is both good and bad, if you know what I mean....I think Pete and I will become fast friends very soon. :-)

Below are photos of other neighbors....local sandwich shops, bar and grille and a wonderful retail space that is under construction - just wanted to show you what was going on in this part of town:

Well, I hope you enjoyed the little tour of my new neighborhood. There is always something exciting about "starting again" in a new location. Yes, my house is a wreck, boxes still need to be unpacked, and I couldn't find a stamp or envelope in my office to save my life right now...but even with all the packing chaos, there comes the fun side of having new adventures, new friends to be made, new sandwiches to be tried, new running paths to learn and oh yeah, find new places to park - I live in the city after all...and finding parking near your home is an art.

I hope you find new adventures where you live too. Maybe a new store just opened not far from you? Or a new deli? There is something so wonderfully energizing about patronizing a new business. Believe me, the owners appreciate it very much. They just may be too pooped to tell you. So, set out and find a new business and welcome them to the neighborhood - and take a friend. After all, selling two sandwiches is always better than selling just one!

Thank you for allowing me to share my adventures,


Jul 2, 2007

If only I could buy an hour or two...

Is it just me, or do you also believe that you get more than 24 hours in a day, unlike the like the rest of the world? I am so pooped you can't imagine....wait....yes...I am sure you can. Like I am the only person who ever moved? Of course you know that lovely fact of life - moving. This photo is of me and my new best friend - the broom. I call her Helga. It is a sturdy name. And I lean on Helga a lot lately - mainly because my feet are tired. And dirty. And stinky, if you really want to know - I know, I know. TMI. (Too much information.)

But moving should be a snap for me, of all people because in the last 24 years, I have had 16 addresses! Some are from one country to another and some are from state to state and some are from one side of town to the other. After 16 moves, you'd think I would have it figured out. But then again, I use electricity 365 days a year for 43 years, and I still don't have that figured out either.

But, just a short update for now - as I am up to my eyeballs in boxes, files, paint brushes, bolts of fabric and deadlines. Yes, I am alive! And thank you so very much to all of you who have emailed me with your concerns and worries about me be "absent" for so long. How heartwarming to know that so many care.

I apologize for the long silence, but my technical world has been out of sorts for a bit. New office, hooking up phones, faxes, computers, Internet, wireless at that, and then a brand new cell phone and service carrier. My phone numbers can't be transferred and I have to do it all by hand - but my charger is packed somewhere in this place of mine, and I have no access to any of my numbers just yet. I've also been out of town quite a bit and in short - I just refuse to accept that I get 24 hours like the rest of the population.

But in short:

I am still living in St. Louis. I will have an online store - but that has been temporary delayed as my online store is still being "put together" and I promise, you will be the first to know when it is up and running. I have a small presence in a store called Francesca's located in St. Louis on the corner of Nottingham and Mackland (South Hampton Neighborhood). This is a wonderful little street with wonderfully new coffee house, stores, and grocers. I will post photos of the street for you. If in the area, you need to check this little section of town out. It is a co-op and is opened ONLY Fridays and Saturdays. It is brand new, and I am still in the process of stocking my space. So, my local customers can still get soaps and candles, lavender and baby items. These items will be available on line as well. I will get the actual address and photos of the space in my next blog. (It is 11PM, and I can only guess where my address book is at this time and I am too pooped to hunt it down right now....but I promise to get you information soon.)

I still paint, design bedding, drapes, and do design projects. I will still do photography as well. But it takes time to set up my office, my workshop with all my tools and equipment, my design studio, my Internet business space and of course, my living space.

Future postings to this blog will include updates on my new neighborhood, projects, before and after pictures, and yes, the after pictures of that bedroom that I posted the before photos for you. Oh, and I will post some photos of my bathroom in my old apartment. I have had that request several times now, and I finally took some time to shoot it before I took it all apart.

Well, back to work again. Helga awaits. The photo above is me in my bare studio. Moving out of this apartment is bittersweet in many ways. So many hours spent painting and designing it. So many memories. But as I stood in my empty apartment, all alone, and walked through it one more time, I felt contentment. Content that I did my best. Content that I will continue to grow. Content that my time spent in this apartment, was time well spent. As I walked down my favorite tree-lined hallway towards my apartment door, I ran my fingers across the beautiful trees that my friend, Sherrie painted for me so long ago. Along the branches I wrote in tiny, tiny letters my favorite quotes all along the limbs. My fingers stopped on a particular quote that has carried me well:

"It is never too late to become what you might have been." by George Eliot.

I thought about that for a moment and decided that whatever it is that I am meant to be, I will be it with all my heart and soul. And with that last thought, I left my apartment and trotted down the steps to the street (I never walk down stairs, always trotting). And as I pulled out of the parking lot, I glanced over to the paper-covered windows of my empty store front, and my bare balcony of my apartment and thought "it was good, really good. I am now ready for better. Much better."

Thank you for helping me to be better. Without you, being better wouldn't matter much to me.

Have a very safe and happy 4th of July. We are so fortunate to have our freedoms and our safe home. And I hope you join me in finding a way to thank a military member for their service. Without them, our way of life would be so very different. And frankly, I love my life.

from my (new) house to your house,
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