Galena,Illinois, Meeting Jane(aka)Blondie and Al, Getting in the Christmas spirit!

I am joining Beth at Beyond the Garden Gate for Travels Near and Far.
It's her new monthly blog party where you can share your travels!
Meeting Jane and Al, December 2009.
 Dan and I were very lucky this past week-end!  We got to meet some of the nicest, warmest people you would ever hope to know!   Many of you will recognize the pretty lady above as Jane, also known as Blondie!  If you haven't met Jane, head over after this post to Blondie's Journal and tell her Cindy sent you~   Dan and I met Jane, and her husband Alan this past week-end in Beautiful, Galena, Illinois!  Jane and I had been talking for months about meeting and after lot's of planning, we were all headed to Galena.  Galena was a good half way point, about a 3 hour drive for both of us~ Here you see Jane and her husband Alan, shortly after we met at an Italian Restaurant called Vinnie Vanucii's!   But it wasn't just lunch, we had   2 days to spend getting acquainted!

Jane had found this lovely B and B with just the cutest name, Annie Wiggins for us to stay in!  More on that later.....
We were off to shop and visit and eat and enjoy beautiful Galena!

Galena is this beautiful, historic  little town located on the Illinois river.  Ninety percent of the town is on the National Historic Registry.  This is also the hometown of President Grant and I did an earlier post on touring his beautiful home.  This shop owner sure had a brilliant idea!   This was the cutest store window ever! Jane, Al, Dan and I spent a lot of time in this cute little store!  Besides the darling store windows.....

More cuteness!  They had a Guy Cave equipped with a big screen tv and beverages!  Jane and I shopped while the guys hung out in the Man Cave, but of course Jane and I had to crash the party!


We had so much fun just visiting and getting acquainted!  It was like old friends getting back together!  After a fun afternoon of shopping, eating and visiting we head over to the beautiful Annie Wiggins!

Here Santa greets us at the door!

It looks like a picture postcard and I am so excited!  Jane and Al had arrived the night before to celebrate their Wedding Anniversary, Congrats Jane and Al!! so they already know their way around.  Let's take a tour inside~

Our room is located on the 2nd floor and has a private entrance complete with fireplace and our own private balcony.

Our romantic looking bed! 

We had a charming  2nd story porch filled with wicker furniture!  Jane and Al are one floor up, I will let Jane fill you in on that story! After a little R and R we head down to the parlor to meet Al and Jane for cocktails, and dinner out!

As you head into the beautiful parlor, you will see a Victorian home built in the 1830's dressed in all its Christmas Splendor!

Your's truly!

Handsome Hubby!

The gorgeous tree!

The owner, our hostess had decorated many of the rooms with these beautiful gowns!  Very Victorian looking!

The beautiful wallpaper in the foyer.

A view up the lovely staircase!

After some fun parlor games, ( isn't this just the neatest set!)  we have the Union and Confederate soldiers facing off, we're off to dinner.  We had a lovely evening at Fried Green Tomatoes!  This fabulous Eatery, in downtown Galena, served the most awesome food!  I don't have any pics, (too busy eating and visiting) but Jane may have some to share!  If you ever visit Galena, this should go on your Must Do list!

After a lovely evening of visiting we all retired to our rooms.  We will meet in the dining room for breakfast, but first I wanted to share with you the view I woke up to the next morning!  The Belvedere Mansion was right next door and although they are not a B and B, they do have tours!  This was our lovely morning view!  I don't ever recall seeing a more picture perfect postcard view!  The recent snow glistening and the trees lovingly flocked by Mother Nature!

What a gorgeous Mansion! 

Our hostess had the dining room gorgeously set!  Her collection of Johnson Brothers Old British Castles just took my breath away!


A dish lover's paradise!!

Jane and I just loved this tablecloth!  The food was scrumptious! 

Just look at that Apothecary Jar!  It would have been perfect for Marty's Cloche Party!!!

A gorgeous vintage Vignette!  After packing up, Jane, Al, Dan and I head downtown in search of some big screen tv's!  Now what could be more perfect than this!  My hubby, a rabid Green Bay Packer fan and Alan, a loyal Chicago Bears fan are in a border battle today!  Now if you follow football you probably know, that the border states are generally big time rivals!  For us it's the Vikings and the Bears!  Jane and I, have Dan and Al pinky swear to  still like each other no matter what team wins!      LOL!! 

Jane and I spend the next 3 hours visiting, visiting and visiting some more!    Occasionally, we even check on the guys and the progress of the game! 

The guys view!!!  After a very close game, the Packers were able to pull off a win, and it was time for us all to hit the road!  Dan and I  had one of the most magical and fun week-end's ever!   Jane and Alan are just the nicest, most gracious people and a whole lot of fun too!!!!  If you ever get to meet a Blogger friend, don't hesitate!  I have been blessed to have met several and they will be friends for life!!!    I know this post was long so I am adding on to several Blogger Parties!  There are so many and so little time, and I doubt I will do much more posting before Christmas but I will be around to visit you all soon!  ( Pinky Promise!)

Thank-you Jane and Al for a fabulous, fun filled week-end, one we will never forget!!!       Cindy


  1. Love all the photos. I haven't had fried green tomatoes in decades and used to love them as a kid. You are both so beautiful, very photogenic. What a wonderful time for all of you.

  2. One of the neatest posts ever! I have learned that cyber friendships are real .. that we gravitate to people we would enjoy meting face to face ~ as you learned over the weekend. I've been lucky to meet one fellow Oregon blogger, hope to meet more. I travel to Atlanta this winter ... those Atlanta gals are something else. Looking forward to meeting a few!

  3. These pictures bring back great memories, Cindy, and you took so many more than me!! I'd love to stay here again...do you think the same owner is there? December is so up in the air with our 25th anniversary. The kids keep talking "Surprise Party!" That's nice...when? But if we get together, I would love to go to Galena again. How about you?


  4. At first, I was confused by this post with the Christmas pictures and snow...then I went back to the beginning and saw that it was from Dec. 2009. Ohhh, OK! lol

    My hubby and I go to Galena at least once every couple of years. I am familiar with all the places you mentioned. Fried Green Tomatoes has the best Italian food, don't they? Vinny Vanucchi's is pretty darn good, too. Have never stayed at Annie Wiggins - looks beautiful!

  5. Oh wow...what a wonderful couple of days you all had....That B & B looks scrumptious!!! Gorgeous photos - and so appreciate the "rerun" for those of us who weren't blog-savy back then and haven't had a chance to go through everyone's archives....What a fun get away.....Hope you have a wonderful weekend! Smiles & Hugs ~ Robin

  6. Hi Cindy, I can remember when you met Blondie and hubby. You girls looked as though you had known each other forever.. What a beautiful picturesque place to visit.. so magical... hugs ~lynne~

  7. Oh Cindy, I would so love to see this place in person, it wonderful and you did a great job with the pics...oh and BTW you are so cute too girl!
    Thanks for sharing this wonderful armchair tour, it really lifted me up today!!!

  8. I remember this trip, Cindy! I love the way you all have connected! Hope you are having great weekend!...hugs...Debbie

  9. Loved your post,Cindy! I saw you planned to link to Travels Near And Far - perhaps you had difficulty linking? I have opened the link back up if you'd like to join in.
    Hugs, Beth

  10. Hi Girlfriend...

    Ohhh...I'm so glad that you shared your trip to Galena again! I know that ya'll had the best time ever! Ohhh my gosh...the B&B where ya'll stayed in FABULOUS! Of course, I love the rich color palette. And...your bedroom was gorgeous! I was just wondering what Dan thought about the room? Especially with the pretty lacy canape? I love it! Thanks for sharing your trip with us!

    Love ya, sweet friend!

  11. The B & B is beautiful, inside and out! You've put me in the Christmas spirit. I am so glad to meet Blondie and her hsb via your post. Glad you all got to meet in person. Ron and I are headed for a B & B in Missouri wine country this weekend. Thanks for linking up, Cindy.
    Hugs, Beth

  12. Hi Cindy...
    You and Jane looked so cute in those photo's. Snow?? You had snow already?? HOW wonderful!
    I missed this post and was totally confused and wondered if I had somehow gone wrong and ended up in old posts..but no, it's recent. How neat!

    Cindy..you don't have an email address? I hate taking up so much comment space..on things other than your post. I searched all over the place..but didn't see a contact place.
    I guess we just don't have pumpkins here like that. I've given up looking. I thought perhaps you had used scewers of some sort..
    They do look heavy though.
    Hugs to you..and I LOVE seeing photo's of you. I visit Janes blog often. She is a cutie!

  13. What a fun trip! It's nice seeing what the other halves of Blondie and Mrs. Applestone look like, too! It's always fun meeting fellow bloggers in person, isn't it? Hope you'll show us what you bought in the next post! ;o)

  14. I loved seeing these. I know you all just had the best time ever, and it is high on my list to meet BOTH of you.




I would love to hear from you. Come back and visit anytime. Warmest Wishes, Cindy