Sunday, April 26, 2009
I wanted to let you all know that my fabulous husband and I have teamed up for some blogging. We have started a new blog: "What's Brewing with JANERIC?" which you can find at
Or by clicking on the blog links I have listed here. I will of course remain "Jano Fabulous" and Eric's blogging handle is "Brewmaster E". I will still blog here now and then, but most updates that concern "us" will likely be posted on the janeric blog. Hopefully now that there are two authors we can keep you better updated.
Monday, April 20, 2009
The ports of call were great. After two and half days at sea our first port was Panama. In Panama we took a bus trip along the canal to the Pacific Ocean, stopping to see several ships travel through the Miraflores Locks. Our guide gave us all sorts of U.S. history about the Canal Zone. We returned to the Atlantic Ocean via a train ride along the canal. The canal was really cool and it was great to see two oceans in just over an hour.
The next day we stopped in Costa Rica. Our excursion to the coffee plantation was cancelled because it didn't fill up, so instead we took another excursion where we stopped at a banana plantation, took a short train ride along the edge of the rain forest, and then a boat ride along the river. The boat ride was awesome... we saw sloths, howler monkeys, iguanas, bats, egrets, a cayman and lots of birds. It was even fun when our boat lost its steering and everyone starting singing "Row Row Row Your Boat" as we waited for another boat to pick us up. After a mini-buffet of fresh local fruits (the best watermelon I have ever had) we headed back to the ship.
The next day we were at sea, and then on Easter Sunday we stopped in Belize. We took another river cruise where we saw a crocodile, manatees, more bats and monkeys and then had lunch and a Belikin beer at a local resort before heading to Altun Ha, which are Mayan ruins. Altun Ha was very interesting and impressive but we mostly admired from a far as it was about 95 and humid and the heat was definitely getting to me.
Thursday, March 19, 2009
Eric and I ordered Happy Joe's pizza for dinner and are hunkered in watching some basketball. Besides being all cute, handsome, caring and my best friend, Eric comes complete with a big TV that makes for much improved March Madness viewing than what I am used to.
A couple of weekends I headed to my parents house/CU for a long weekend. Friday I spent the day doing various wedding errands and then spent the night at my Mom & Dad's house along with my matron of honor Jenn, and her parents. Jenn flew in from Colorado Springs for the weekend just to throw a shower for me, along with Nikki aka Maid of Honor and Jenn's Mom, Bernice. I was very touched that she made the trip just one month before she does again with John and the girls for the wedding.
The shower was awesome. It was at Silver Creek restaurant in the greenhouse and Bernice, Jenn and Nik went above and beyond. The gifts were wonderful, but by far my favorite part was getting caught up with friends and family and also getting my family, Eric's family, and our various friends together to get to know each other before the wedding. It was lots of fun and bodes well for a fun and exciting wedding reception in a few weeks. Here is the only picture that made it to my camera... Jenn took the rest on hers. I am with my Busey buddies Judy and Linda and my former Busey co-worker Lindsey and her twin sister, Meredith.
A few of my favorite presents include a beautiful glass cardinal my Auntie Ann gave me from her own glass collection, knowing how much Eric and I love Cardinals. Also, my Aunt Mona gave me a Cardinals magnet and a deviled egg plate (we just so happen to have a plated ledge in our kitchen)... which were gifts completely inspired by her late son/my late cousin, Bruce who was my special friend/Cardinal buddy and had a deviled egg plate collection of his own.After the shower I spent the afternoon/evening/night shopping, hanging out, and enjoying cocktails with Jenn, Nikki and my friend/former roommate, Jeanne. No crazy bachelorette party antics, just good times with great friends. I am truly blessed to have three such awesome friends who though they are completely different from one another, and really don't have all that much in common as far as their daily lives are concerned they all get along great and we had so much fun together.
That Sunday after breakfast with Jenn & Nik, Nik and I headed to Siegel for a baby shower for our friend, Karen. We had just seen her the day before at my shower but it was fun to get caught up with Karen's friends and family too. Karen is looking great and I think motherhood is really going to agree with her.
Sunday after the shower I stopped in Peoria and picked up Eric who spent the weekend with Scott and the rest of the Barkers.
Since then life has been relatively routine with the exception of trying to finish up various wedding details. I think things are relatively under control, and Eric and I are both getting excited for our bid day, and then our cruise the following week. After two moves, adjusting to working from home, and the wedding rush we are ready for a vacation.
Oh, yesterday was a big day. The sale of my house in Champaign closed. My attorney handled it all for me so I didn't have to make another trip to C-U. It went smoothly and the money is in the bank. Eric and I are both so thankful the house is sold, especially before the wedding. We know the quick and easy sale was truly a gift from God. We prayed and prayed about where we should live and if/when we should look for jobs and look for a new house and list me house. Everything in that arena just seemed to fall into place and we know it has all been a "God Thing".
I am not sure if I will blog again before the wedding or not. We are also toying with the idea of renaming or editing this blog to provide for both of us to post. Oh, speaking of blogs Nikki has started one... "In the Nik of Time" (title was my idea:)) and the link is on the right side of this page. She will be heading to Florida for Spring training soon so be sure to check out updates from Florida.
Okay, time to watch the Illini
Monday, March 2, 2009
Saturday morning we got up early and headed to C-U... the first time I had been back since I moved six weeks ago. We met with our wedding DJ and that went really well... I think we are both getting excited about getting to boogie down with our friends and family in 5 weeks. Next we stopped by my house and packed up the few things we had left behind to helps show the house. It is officially empty and ready for the closing later this month.
Afterwards we had planned to meet Nikki for lunch, but she too was a little under the weather so we picked up a bucket of chicken and hung out at her apartment for the afternoon with her parents. It was nice to just chill and get caught up.
Saturday evening I went to dinner with some of my best girls from my church, Quest United Methodist. It was lots of fun and I shared with them how life in Geneseo is going. I will admit that I am a little sad to being leaving such a wonderful faith community behind... okay a lot sad... but I know God will guide Eric and I in establishing a great faith community here. We don't necessarily have all the details figured out, but are trusting God's plan is far better than anything we could imagine. While I was out with the girls, Eric hung out with a couple of the Quest guys. I think he was a little nervous hanging with guys he didn't know all that well, but they ended up playing "Settlers of Catan" a game that Eric loves so that definitely broke the ice a bit. Eric and I like playing the game but it isn't quite the same with just two people, plus I just don't have quite the competitive spirit that they guys had.
We spent Saturday night at my parents house, and had a nice visit and great breakfast/brunch on Sunday morning. My Mom and I got to chat about some of the wedding details, Eric and both got caught up on some sleep we had missed being sick, and it was just a nice quiet visit. Sunday afternoon we stopped in Peoria on the way home and hung out with Scott, Tara & Kira. We exchanged Christmas presents... who cares that it was March 1st. I got the coolest jigsaw puzzle of all of the baseball stadiums that you can write the date you visited each one on. It will definitely be framed one day and hung on the wall when we have our sports/game room in the basement. Eric got a way cool book on brewing beer... right now it is a coffee table book, but we hope to put it into practice in the not to distant future. It was a fun visit, and we all enjoyed a trip to Flat Top Grill before we headed home. Yummy!!!! They had calamari to add to your stir fry, and personally I could make a meal out of the pita bread!!
We got home just after 9 and unloaded what we was the last truck/car loan of our respective moves. Some folks pointed out that we will have to unload shower/wedding presents... but I don't count that... those are gifts and were packed by someone else and infinitely more fun that the stuff we already own.
So, there you go. That's what is up with me... I can't believe I didn't take a single picture from my Quest Farewell Gathering... duh!!!!
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Earlier in the weed my parents came to visit. My Mom and I went shopping for her dress for the wedding and we had success. My parents are the the market for a new refrigerator so they checked out ours... I think my Mom measured it and pondered inside to re-evaluate the storage capacity about 20 times. We also had the Direct TV moved from Eric's apartment. So between having his furniture here and real TV to watch the house is slowing starting to take shape. It is kind of funny how well the random "left over" furniture actually looks kind of nice together in the family room with our bargain brown leather couch we got at JC Penney's for a steal. Also, we put Eric's single sleeper sofa in the office and it looks great. The room was a little sparse with just the desk and the sofa (which is the size of a small love seat or over sized chair) so the sofa really warms up the place. Not that I really will be logging much sofa time in there while I am working, but it pulls out to a remarkably comfortable twin size bed and will serve as an extra bedroom for guests.
Today Eric and went to church and Sunday school, and the had lunch and did a little shopping afterwards. I realized that in less that in six weeks we will be on a cruise and my wardrobe wasn't really ready. We have had a lazy evening at home since... doing a little unpacking (one day we might be done), laundry, I worked on my Bible Study homework, and watched a little TV.
The wedding RSVP's are starting to arrive... and that is exciting. So far it looks like lots of our family and friends will be able to join us. There are still tons of little details to finish up but we are starting to get excited. With each RSVP I get excited about seeing so and so, although I realize that it isn't like we will have tons of time to visit with everyone for very long. My new game is to try and guess who is replying by the post mark. We are meeting with the DJ next weekend so we are thinking about music, and the whole dancing and party aspect of the reception. Woo Hoo!
Well that's about it, a rather boring blog. Hope all is well, and that spring comes soon!
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Saturday we went over the Travis and Steff's to celebrate Katie's 8th birthday. It was lots of fun with lots of good food, and it was great to only have to drive about 25 minutes after a family celebration as opposed to 3 hours. Here are some pictures of the lovely Miss Kate... sporting a temporary shark tatoo on her forehead, and being ever so lady-like with the worms in her nose. Travis is also striking a pose with one of Katie's gifts. (Okay, so you will have to wait on pics... blogger is not letting me download them... I will try later)
February brought some other family birthdays. Katie shares a birthday with my brother-in-law and fellow beer drinker, Larry. My nephew, Jeremy, celebrates on Valentines day, followed by his mom, Jayne, the next day. I have to brag on Jeremy... he was a great help on move-in day.
Still working on getting settled and making some connections. I am going to my women's bible study again tomorrow and looking forward to it. I also have been going to Curves and enjoy visiting with the women there.
I have been living without TV since I moved. We are having Eric's Direct TV moved next week, and have viewed a few games when we were at his apartment packing. I thought I would just die without it but I don't really miss it all that much. In fact Eric hooked up an antenna to my TV last night so I get the network stations now, but honestly haven't turned it on since last night. I am sure I will watch some tomorrow night when Eric is at a meeting. I am hoping that having gotten used to not having TV I will not watch it as much. It helps having Eric around because we often find something else to do, being it unpacking or we even broke out the Backgammon game the other night. I had not played in many years, but it was lots of fun.
I have been busy trying to work on some wedding stuff too. Invites went out Friday, and RSVP's are starting to arrive. I am glad I have lots of stuff already in place but there will no doubt be several trips to C-U the month before to wrap up some last minute details. It is a great relief to have the invites out.
Well that is all for now. I will probably hit the hay by 10 p.m. Getting up and working by 6:30 these days has moved up my bedtime lately.
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
Thanks to everyone who has been praying for us. It is still "sale pending" subject to buyers home inspection and financing, but so far so good, and Eric and I are so relieved to be this far along in the process so far. Closing should be sometime in March.