There isn’t a lot to say about February. Mostly because it was a blur and I don’t remember half of what happened during the short month. There was a lot of crying, laughing, laughing until crying, inside jokes, random noises, another magazine, bottomless mimosas, yelling, cats, and ice cream. So much ice cream. I wish I took more photos this month or kept up the video I promised myself I was going to do. I wish there was more swiping right on boys instead of my haughty “no!” as I quickly swiped left. There was Drake and seeing different sides to new people. There was Trops and apartment hunting and snuggling to Baloo. There were so many things in between and upside down and loved. More than I can count. There was the fear of March and turning 24 but here we are and now we’re moving forward.
As much as I love the good ol’ STL, it’s nice to pack up a few things and get away for the weekend. Whether you’re wanting to drive to another city for a different kind of nightlife or escape to the countryside for stargazing and quiet, there are many places to travel for a great weekend outside the ‘Lou. This month I bring you the quiet, small town of St. James, Missouri.
Where To Stay
The Painted Lady
Located right off the highway, The Painted Lady is a cute and unique bed and breakfast that accommodates all guests. The house is beautifully decorated with interesting antiques, comfortable beds and deep Jacuzzi tubs (with incredibly strong jets!). Innkeepers Sandy and Wanda Zinn keep the five rooms (Melanie, Little Tara, Scarlett, Prissy and the Guest House) immaculate and you might never want to leave.
Greenstay Hotels and Suites For those of you who want an easy check-in and a quiet night, Greenstay Hotels is the place for you. Not only is the St. James Winery located right across the road, but it’s conveniently located off the highway and close to all major restaurants. This is the perfect stop for that weekend getaway.
Where To Eat
Just a Taste Recently opened and located right in the heart of town, Just a Taste is the wine and coffee bar of our dreams. The building, originally built in 1907 in the spirit of the St. Louis World’s Fair, accommodates the menu’s range of wine, whiskey, beer and cocktails. The owners, Eric Taylor and Casey Stuck, merged their two talents and passions–Taylor’s love for wine and Stuck’s passion for beer–into one fantastic location. Even though they don’t identify as a wine bar, coffee shop or pub, we can confirm their wine, espresso and beer on tap are pretty excellent.
Sybill’s Friendly is an understatement when it comes to describing the staff at Sybill’s Restaurant and Gift Shop. Their fresh, flavorful menu–we recommend the Caprese– and large array of wine make this restaurant an oasis in this small town. One of the best parts about Sybill’s? The restaurant is committed to the environment and is a community leader in waste diversion and recycling efforts.
Country Bob’s You can’t miss Country Bob’s Diner when you pass through St. James. The food is some of the best Southern comfort food you can get your hands on. Get up early for their Saturday and Sunday Breakfast Buffet to try the biscuits, gravy, bacon and pancakes. You won’t regret it.
What To Do
St. James Winery With more than 160 acres of vineyard growing more than a dozen types of grapes, award-winning St. James Winery is a great place to get away to for the weekend. Start early and sample a wide selection of wines, ranging from very sweet to extremely dry. Our favorite thing at the moment is the Cranberry Sweet Wine–perfect for those family gatherings around the holidays.
Public House Brewing Company
This recently opened brewing company has already had a successful run in Rolla and has brought good brews to St. James. Situated next to the winery, this is the perfect spot to grab dinner after spending the day at the winery. And all you have to do is walk on over–no driving needed! Head on over on a Saturday for a night of local (and not-so-local) artists in their taproom and try the award-winning Rod’s Cream Ale. Cheers!
Vacuum Cleaner Museum Definitely an odd stop along the way, but still very interesting. If you’re not intrigued by their billboard on the side of the highway, you’ll be intrigued by their collection. There are more than 600 vacuum cleaners (all in working condition) including novelty cleaners such as the Hoover Constellation–a vacuum that is built to float like a hovercraft. No, really.
Meramec Caverns One of our favorite places for a weekend getaway is Meramec Caverns. Whether your thing is camping and canoeing or delving into the depths of an old cave, Meramec is sure to have something for you. Feeling daring? We recommend taking an adventure along the tree tops on a zip line or embarking on a nightly lantern tour of the caverns.
Originally on my weekend guide on ALIVEMag.com. Check them out.
As long as I can remember, I’ve always had a “passion for fashion.” Sorry, had to get the phrase out of the way. I guess you can say that I’ve been very much a girly-girl from day one, although I don’t feel that girly. I just like hair and make-up and clothes and shoes and jewelry and bags–those aren’t too girly, right? After I quit playing all three sports teams at once, much to my mother’s dismay, I focused more on writing, reading, and discovering my sense of style.
I started playing with fashion in middle school, telling my friends how they should style their clothes, and (sadly) they took my advice. I had friends wearing their belts outside of their belt loops, wearing UGG boots before everyone started to wear them (why are these still a thing?), and taking the “layered” look to the extreme.
My personal style in the middle school to high school freshman year era of my life was low rider Lucky jeans, tops from the Buckle that had too many embellishments on the sleeves, and Hurley hoodies that I had no business wearing. The clothes looked horrendous looking back, but at that time, I thought I looked so good. Especially with my bangs always in my face, blackout eyeliner rimming my full eyeballs, and I remember that I always had to hold the back of my pants when bending down in fear of my butt crack being on display.
It was during this time that I realized my friends were having a major influence over my style. Yeah, I picked out the things that I wanted, but I didn’t wear a lot of things in my closet because I would fear what people at school would say. I remember that I had these pink pointy-toed flats that I wore once to school. As soon as I got to the bus, the neighborhood kid laughed at me, and everyone else that I came into contact that day had the same reaction. My close friends laughed, but understood that it was just me, but other people who I didn’t know laughing? That stung a bit. So, I just started dressing like everyone else
My sophomore year of high school, a girl from California transferred to our school. She was the epitome of fashion at that time. She looked like she came straight out of The O.C. and she probably did. Blonde bob cut, pale white skin, and beautiful fashion pieces. Full neutral skirts with a belt cinching in her waist. Dark mid-rise jeans with loose fitting tops tucked into the top of her jeans. She embraced her style, never giving anyone a second look when they didn’t understand the belts she wore around her waist. Girls at school would be jealous of her style and started to copy some of her signature pieces. There was an epidemic happening at school. Instead of the tacky bedazzled jeans everyone was so fond of wearing, there were girls in classy a-lined skirts, mid-rise jeans, and button ups.
This was when I realized that a) I needed to find a style b) I needed to embrace that style and c) who cares what anyone else thinks?
When I came to this realization, I started my dress obsession and collection (I now have 89 dresses piled in my closet). I wore nice fitting jeans that soon turned into high waisted, that has caused a fair amount of ridicule from a certain boy. I wore patterned tights, colored tights, tights in general which never happened in my very suburban midwestern high school. I stopped dressing for other people and started dressing for myself, which was one of the best decisions I have ever made.
Senior year, I won “Best Dressed,” so I guess people liked my style too.
Now a days, when I talk about style and fashion, I always get the same look from my out-of-state friends, “Wait, St. Louis has fashion? What is it? The clearance bin at Wal-Mart?” Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha.
I get it, too. The midwest isn’t known for its fashion scene. If you go to any high school, you’ll see why. If you go into any grocery store (outside of Wash Ave and Clayton), you’ll see why. But, thanks to ALIVE Magazine and Fashion Week, fashion is being brought to St. Louis in a big way, and I, for one, am so grateful.
Last week was Saint Louis Fashion Week and, because I had to work and then got sick, I only could go to the runway shows. There were many events surrounding the week. A Midwestern Conference discussing fashion in St. Louis with guest panelists Editor-At-Large of Harper’s Bazaar Derek Blasberg, Creator of New York Fashion Week Fern Mallis, Fashion Designers Stan Herman and Timo Weiland, and CEO of Hilldun Corporation Gary Wassner. To say that I was bummed to miss this, is a massive understatement. There was also a pop-up trunk show at Saks Fifth Avenue, a gala, and many many after parties.
If you’d like to read about the events I missed, please check out the lovely bloggers of #STLFW and their wonderful posts about the events.
The runway shows were incredible, although if I’m being honest, Wednesday’s show ran a bit too long for me because of the wait to discover who won the Fashion Fund for the season. But alas, the designs were impeccable and below I have my “must haves” of the upcoming season.