Sunday, November 29, 2009

Thanksgiving Weekend - The Mulitpart Saga - Part I - Long Grove

Thanksgiving Break has come and almost gone.  It was a nice time that included my mother and father coming up from the St. Louis region to stay with us.  A fun time was had by all, and we were able to go and do a couple of things I have not done before.

Going to Long Grove is one of those things I had not done before, but turned out to be a very nice thing.  My wife and I went with my mom and dad on Friday to historical Long Grove.  This is a little crossroads of the town that has a nice little shopping area set in historical houses.  It is more of  a boutique type of thing that has several little specialty stores.  On a day I know the malls were full and lots of shopping was being done in a hurried manner, this was much more my speed.  We meandered for a couple of hours through the different shops.  Here are some of them...and my impressions:

The Artistic Gardner - This was the first shop we went to...and quite possibly my favorite of all the ones we saw.  There is a lot of lawn art made of reclaimed metal.  All of it is very well done.  There were a few pieces I liked...but will have to go back when I have saved up some money.  They do sell jewelry, some furniture, and various other things.  We actually ended up buying some very cool placemats there.  (Never thought I would string the words "very cool" and "placemats" together....)  I'm sure the Nature Nerd and Chicago Gardner have already been there...but if they have not - it is a place they should check out.

Paddy's on the Square - This was an Irish-themed shop that I loved, as well.  While there were many nice tweed and wool articles of clothing being sold, the thing I liked the most was the artwork by Wild Goose Studios.  Some were simple sayings, some were intricate Celtic crosses and knots, and some were replicas of different historical carvings.  All were very well done...and there were a lot I could have bought.  There were also some illuminated page artwork pieces being sold there.  The historian in me really liked those.

While those were the two main stores that stick out in my mind, there were several others I liked.  There was the Dakota Designs which sold moccasins and Native American artwork.  There were some nice pieces there (and my wife ended up getting some Minnitaka moccasin slippers there).  There was also a yarn store there.  If you wanted a certain type of yarn...I'm sure they had it.  They even had some alpaca yarn.  It was so soft that it inspired my wife to start to learn how to knit...that way we can go back and get some for her to use.

The one store that was a disappointment to me was the "British Import" store.  Having some Christmas crackers, some Marmamite, and black currant soda does not make you a British Import store...or if it does, not a very good one.

We were going to go to the Mill Pond Cafe...but the wait was a bit too long.  That gives us something to look forward to visiting next time we go.

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