Sunday, December 5, 2010

northwind roadtrip...part one

This weekend I had a wonderful day with the girls.

We loaded ourselves in my truck, thermoses of hot chocolate in hand, wearing puffy down coats and long underwear with wool socks.

(Did I mention it was a high of 19 degrees here today! Yikes!)

We planned to spend the day driving backroads in rural Wisconsin until we filled the back of the truck with vintage goodness. There is little I love more than a day laughing and shopping with my sister and my best girlfriends!

Our first stop was my favorite. Northwind Perennial Farm in Burlington, WI. They are mainly a nursery of sorts that grows and sells perennial plants in the spring and summer. Their grounds are out of this world gorgeous when they are full bloom. For any of my Chicago area peeps out there....this place is soooo worth the drive!

I LOVE this place. Really, truly LOVE IT.

I visit in the spring when I am ready to do my planting for the year, again in the summer for a farmer's market or two...they have some of the most beautiful locally grown fruits and vegetables I have ever seen! Organic and lovely! But I am always drawn back in December, despite the cold and snow, to soak up a little Christmas ambience in their gorgeous red barn they deck out for the Holidays!

Today, I took so many photos, they asked where I was "from". Like I was big time paparazzi or something. So funny!

So here are my outdoor shots from the day, tomorrow I will show you what was inside that huge, old barn!

As you walk in you are greeted by a warm fire...

And a jar of these...just in case you need to sit a while to warm your toes...and have a little snack...

I have to confess instead of roasting a marshmallow...

I had one of these...

Notice there are not many left in the box.

That was not my fault, I swear.

But I did bring one...or two...of these beautiful treats below home with me...

For my husband, of course.

Yeaaaaah....for my husband...thats it...

...they were for him.

Again, I swear to this.

I got a little distracted by the baked goods there for a moment.

I almost forgot to show you why I went to Northwind in the first place...

it was to shop inside this huge old beauty of a barn...

I can't wait to show you the goodness that was inside in my next post...

but first...a few of the 1,214 photos I took outside of the grounds

I love barn doors. Their are simple and so beautiful all on their own.

Northwind has a kitty at every turn.

Each one sweet and friendly.

It just adds to the ambience.

This little guy followed me around during my visit.

Greenery is for sale around the outside of the barn.

I love how it is displayed...I was so distracted by the old wheelbarrows, galvanized tubs and old rusty urns they were displayed in...that I forgot to buy any!

But I did snag a basket of giant pinecones.

I sat in these chairs when I visited this past spring.

They seem so much more peaceful now...

Throughout the grounds, Northwind has the most beautiful "sculptures" made from salvaged moulding and old chippy painted wood...this gazebo is one of my favorites and has chairs inside it during the summer.

I want the hubs to build one of these for me for the backyard!

Even the goats have a fantastic house, I wonder if they realize how cool their digs are!?

This poor little guy had a limp, so wouldn't venture out of the barn. I had to go in and see him...

And our little visit was going just fine until he took it upon himself to nibble on my favorite scarf.

A word of advice for all of you.

Goats are cute.

But they cannot be trusted around fringe.

Again, my favorite green chairs...

Truer words have never been spoken....

And I leave you will a little hint of what lies inside...

I don't know about you, but when I walk up to a barn...and through an open sliding door see the back of a grand piano, I am only thinking one thing.

Oooohhh.....this is going to be good!!

I can't wait to show you some of the 2,413 photos I took inside!

I had a wonderful weekend...and hope you all did too!

So tell me, did you visit somewhere fun this weekend!?


  1. Beautiful photos of a favorite place...thanks for the reminder that I need to get over there soon. Haven't been there since the antique show this summer.
    Can't wait to see what's in the barn this time of year!


  2. Oh my goodness, that looks just like my kind of place!! The snow just adds to the ambiance, doesn't it? So quaint!! Can't wait to see what you found inside!!

  3. Oh wow, what a charming place! Our family is moving to the Chicago area in 2011, I am going to bookmark this post and make sure to drive up and visit. Can't wait to see what's inside that beautiful barn!!

  4. Got to admit... that last pic gave me goosebumps.

    What a treat.

  5. This looks like a great great place! Love all the pics...looks like a perfect day! Thanks for sharing! Look forward to more pics of the inside!
    Tammy :-)

  6. Oh my stars! That is down right heavenly. Your pictures are gorgeous. I feel like I was there.

  7. WOW!! What a beautiful place, I cannot wait to see the 'inside' photos! We do not have anything like that here...marshmallows and baked goods as well, I am so impressed and am bordering on booking an airline ticket! Beautiful photos, thank you so much for sharing your fabulous weekend. Hugs ~ Tina x

  8. So gorgeous! Those treats would have tempted me as well...Ha!!
    Can't wait to see inside!!!!

  9. But I don't want to wait..... You certainly have me hodling my breath waiting for your next post. I would so love a place like that close to me!

  10. What a beautiful place! I love that you can roast marshmallows AND get baked goods! :) I love all the decorating on the outside, I can't wait to see what is inside and what you picked up!!! :)

  11. What a lovely pace to visit! I wish we had something as spectacular close to me.

    Waiting (not so patiently) to see what magic awaits inside.

  12. Oh my! What a perfect place to bring your camera. Loved the goats. You've got me excited. The last pic with the piano...the curiosity is killing me:)

  13. Marshmallows, kitties and a piano in the barn...sounds likes a wonderful place to visit :)

  14. oh man........that totally tugged at my heart strings Mary!! That barn looks so much like mine.....good gravy...and here I thought I was getting over the fire...I guess not eh?

    that looks like an awesome place...where is it?

  15. I just saw the name I was oogling over the barn and totally didn't see the name of the place....I've heard about it...and now I HAVE to go! thanks for posting these pictures!

  16. Why yes, I did go somewhere exciting. The Kane County Flea. I missed you. I thought of you as I was driving by your exit at about 30 miles per hour on the unplowed tollway. Hope you had a good day. Miss you :)


  17. That gazebo is simply stunning. Let me tell you one thing about goats, they will munch on any and everything! They're big time chewers. lol. A few of them are great little environmentally friendly lawnmowers. Ha! But don't count on having anything else in your yard because they like flowers, bushes, trees, patio furniture too.

    Looks like you had a fabulous time!


  18. That's like the cutest place i've ever seen... Absolutely charming...
    Thanks for sharing the moment


  19. What beautiful images, Mary!
    No one captures the beauty and majesty of a barn like you do, Mary.

    And lawdy, I can't wait to see what's on the other side of the grand piano!!!


  20. I too love NORTHWIND FARM!!! I live a little over an hour from there... YES, the cat also has stole my heart... YOUR Snow pics are beyond FaBuLous - you truly captured a magic moment...
    Jeanine, ChiPPy!-SHaBBy!

  21. It looks like a great place to visit and what great pictures you took! The ones of the barn are my favorite - awesome!

  22. oh...sigh....i think i could live in that beauty!! *dream*

  23. Yes! I went shopping in my own little barn! Heeheee!!!

    Happy December, Mary!

    : )

    Julie M.

  24. wow what a beautiful place!!! and i love your blog!