Good heavens, I haven't posted much lately (and I can hear my mother's voice as I write 'good heavens,' something I normally never say, but she did). I've had a hard time commandeering the computer…hence my silence.  Owen tends to have it down in the basement so he can record music, so I am making do with a tired old iPad….which can be iffy. I have so many things to tell you…and yet if I don't write them down right away they fly out of my brain. Ernie and I did a little jaunt to the Starved Rock area. We'd had reservations on the Polar vortex day so delay it until last week. The lodge there was, well, absolutely perfect. We sat in the bar for a bit as an icy storm blew in, then took food upstairs and snuggled in. It was lovely even if it was too icy to walk around the next day. We cautiously crept out and continued to wander.

In the tiny town of Toluca, there are TWO Italian restaurants, both started in the 1930's. They are now owned by the same family. One is open Monday and Tuesday, and the weekend, and the other is open Wednesday and Thursday, and the weekend. Brilliant. There was obviously some competition in the 1950's when these signs went up. Personally, I just have to be Team Mona. They are only open for dinner so we weren't able to stop…but another time.

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The most completely unexpected building of the trip was this perfectly restored little bank, built by Louis Sullivan protégée Parker Noble Berry, in Manlius, Illinois. I stared at it and thought it looked awfully Sullivan-bank-esque, so I trotted over to the little plaques. As it turns out, Berry was a draftsman for Sullivan, and was born in nearby Princeton. Like Frank Lloyd Wright, and George Elmslie, before him, he left Sullivan and started his own practice (although I believe this was done before that point), and sadly, died of influenza at the age of 30, not long after.

The bank (oh, and click here to see the drawing of it at the Art Institute) is just a delightful little gem. It opened in 1915 but failed during the depression, and was used for storage after that; it was restored in 2012. Oh, and evidently he was very involved in working on Sullivan's banks…which only reinforces my plans to visit all of them. And I must say, I do love those old burglar alarms.

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Speaking of architecture, and Princeton, Illinois….does anybody know anything about this building in downtown Princeton?

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Side note….sorry for all the wonky perspective. Ha, there's a phrase for you!

 

 

Thoughts?