Wednesday, October 8, 2014

The Company that Wasn't

Due to an illness on their end, we did not end up having company last weekend. Instead we had my sister and her husband over for dinner Saturday night. They had been invited over that day anyway, so we just ended up with a smaller dinner party. The weather was cool and crisp, and perfect for the chili and honey cornbread I had planned for the meal. It was nice to have some one on one time with them, as it has been awhile since the four of us have been together.

Jim took off on a motorcycle ride Sunday morning, which left me with a day alone. Hmmm...what to do? Rumor on the street was that the second Ameren cake, normally inside and available to employees and company guests only, was outside due to an event on Saturday. Early reports on the Cakeway to the West Facebook page Sunday morning indicated it was still out there. So I traded my workout clothes for jeans and a Cardinals sweatshirt, grabbed my camera and my garden gnome, and took off for Ameren. Sure enough, the cakes were there side by side, as well as a couple of other cakers.
Ameren Cakes
Since I was out anyway, I decided to take some new photos in the downtown area. When I originally went to the Shrine of St. Joseph, I didn't realize that even though the cake was behind a fence up on a stone wall, the gate can be opened to better photograph the cake. I also couldn't go into the church in June as there was a wedding taking place. I am so glad that I went back. What a beautiful church! Located at 11th and Biddle Streets, this parish traces its roots back to 1843. The cornerstone of the church was laid in 1844, and it was dedicated in 1846. And I absolutely love all of the St. Louis icons that appear on the cake.
Shrine of St. Joseph
Shrine of St. Joseph cake
Next I went to Citygarden as that cake had been moved to a new location, and then over to Kiener Plaza where I was certain the fountain would be splashing red for the Cardinals playoff game. I was not disappointed!
Kiener Plaza

I picked up a few shots of the Hilton and Drury Hotels for frame of reference shots for my cake book before walking down to the Old Cathedral. It had been draped in scaffolding when I photographed the cake back in June. It looks very pretty now. I took a peak inside, but Mass was just wrapping up so I didn't take any pictures of the interior.
Old Cathedral
This final photo pretty much sums up how it felt to be exploring downtown St. Louis with my camera on a beautiful fall day. Only one last thing to say - Let's go Cards!
Kiener Plaza

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Fall Cleaning

We are having guests this weekend, so I have been on a cleaning spree. There will be four of them requiring three bedrooms, so that means even the third floor needs to be spruced up. Our workout equipment is up there, as well as my sewing machine and ironing board. As I am in the middle of two quilt projects, to say the area is a mess is an understatement. Hopefully I won't run out of time before I run out of dust. Ahchoo!

September sky
The weather has been so beautiful lately. I know we need the rain, but I certainly would prefer to have weather like this for the weekend. If it isn't too hot or rainy, I would like to take our out of town family members to the botanical garden for the Best of Missouri Market. I know it will be crowded, but if we get there when they open Sunday morning it shouldn't be too bad. Unfortunately the trams won't be running, so we probably won't get too far into the garden itself.

Bonhomme Old Stone Church
Today I was invited to speak at the next meeting of my local chamber of commerce. The topic is the stl250cakes, and I will be on a panel with the former executive director of the stl250 organization. She will talk about the genesis of the Cakeway to the West, and I will talk about the cake hunt itself and the historical aspects of some of the locations. I will also put together a slide show of all of my cakes that I will just have running in the background. Amazingly, there are people who have no idea what the cakes are all about, so the pictures should help them get an idea of the magnitude of this undertaking. The icing on the cake at this meeting, pardon the pun, is the unveiling of a "rebel" cake. (Meaning one that was not sanctioned by the stl250 organization. There are several unofficial cakes throughout the St. Louis area.) It should be fun!

Monday, September 22, 2014

Deer in the Headlights

Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery
A few of my friends on Facebook have been posting photos of deer taken in Jefferson Barracks Park. Saturday was so beautiful that Jim and I drove down there in late afternoon since deer are more likely to feed at that time of the day. We were not prepared for the number of deer that we saw, particularly when we traveled through Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery. There were numerous cars doing the same thing as us, and the deer were not afraid. They are apparently used to the gawkers coming through.

deer in Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery

It was a beautiful and peaceful drive through the cemetery but as the sun set, casting shadows over the graves, it was also a sobering reminder of all the men and women who have laid down their lives so that we remain free to travel along the paths of our choosing.