Let’s get social

After enjoying regular luncheons with my dad, it was time to give him a break and find someone else to chat with over lunch.  It didn’t take long before fellow blogger, Ilex of Midwestern Plants, and I were setting up a time and place to meet.  Ilex is anything but shy, but does shy away from posting her photo on the blog.


Ilex and me

So once a time and place were arranged, she graciously sent me a photo of herself letting me know I wasn’t meeting some crazed old guy.  Let’s face it, one crazed old guy in my life is plenty …. hehe!

After a mere three-hours (trust me, we could have talked longer), Ilex and I  parted ways determining it would be a blast to camp together some day.

The next day, I met an old friend for lunch.   St. Charles, Illinois, seemed to be a nice half point for us to meet.  Brenda and I originally met at a postnatal exercise class 28 years ago.


Brenda and me

Shortly after Brenda’s son and my son started kindergarten, Al and I (and our kids) left Illinois and moved west. Somehow Brenda managed to kept track of all my changing addresses.  Over the years, I always looked forward to receiving her Christmas cards with the latest family photo.

We hadn’t seen each other in over twenty-some years and it was wonderful reconnecting and filling each other in on our lives and that of our children.

St. Charles, Illinois, is a quaint little town that sits along the Fox River.  It’s located about 40 miles (64km) west of Chicago.  I noticed the town is cutely decorated with foxes throughout.

Fox River

St. Charles, Illinois, sits along the Fox River

Brenda was running late for our luncheon, which didn’t present a problem for me or my camera.  I wandered around the town a little and slipped into the Hotel Baker, a historic landmark.  After all, I’m always on a quest for blog material.  And with my dear readers in mind, I proceeded to roam around the hotel snapping photos ….. that is until the manager interrupted me.Jenny McCarthy wedding venue

I had just completed taking some photos of this stunning event room when the manager approached me with a quizzical eye and stern comment, “Can I help you?”  Being quick on my feet I responded with, “Why yes.  I’m looking for a wedding venue for my son”.  He didn’t seem to buy it and informed me that I’d need to set up an appointment with the gal at the front desk.  His body language indicated where the exit was.  Now I know how Julia Roberts felt in Pretty Woman.

historic landmark

me in the lobby of the Hotel Baker – just trying to blend in!

A little factoid I did not know until I started putting this post together:  Turns out Jenny McCarthy and Donnie Wahlberg chose this historic hotel to celebrate their wedding weekend with family and friends.  I’m sure we all care and wish them the best 😉 but that might explain the managers concern; perhaps I looked more paparazzi than Julia Roberts hooker.  Reality; more like an RV traveler in a non-RV world.

St. Charles, Illinois

elevator doors at the Hotel Baker

Although the hotel is rather small, some of the historic details were quite interesting and beautiful.  I can see that the Hotel Baker makes for a lovely wedding venue.wedding venues in Illinois

Thanks Ilex and Brenda for your company and taking the time to share lunch with me.  Next up, we move to Al’s sister’s place and ever closer to the Illinois – Wisconsin border.St. Charles, Illinois
Teva Women’s Kayenta Strappy Sandal, Vega Black, 8.5 M US


49 thoughts on “Let’s get social

  1. Formulating an excuse ahead of time is a GREAT plan. I hate it when I come up with the perfect response 15 minutes too late. Such a fun photo of you in the lobby. Did you hand your camera to the manager and ask him to snap that one? 🙂

    • Actually I pulled my girlfriend into the place and had her take the photo and then she asked for wedding venue info for HER son, who is indeed looking!

  2. Very funny post Ingrid. Love that photo of you in Hotel Baker. I can just hear you trying to convince that manager of your intent at the hotel. Great photos!

  3. Ingrid, you are SO funny. You had me laughing regarding the manager and his pompous attitude. We have been watching past seasons of Downton Abbey on our Amazon Firestick. He would SO fit in on that show. And then your pose with that sculpture, OMG. Not Julia Roberts…Bette Midler funny. Although you DO look just like Julia Roberts. 🙂

    • Hardly Julia Roberts, but thank you. We’re almost caught up with Game of Thrones so perhaps we’ll need to check out Downton Abbey. Everyone seems to love it. Glad I could add a little humor to your day 🙂

  4. What beautiful fox sculptures! You definitely know how to blend in, Ingrid.I couldn’t tell the difference. 🙂 Love those elevator doors, but I don’t think I’d like to meet the snooty manager of the hotel.

    • Haha… I think the arch in my back was lacking. Some of the details throughout the hotel were intricate and unique. I would have loved being able to focus on photographing them instead of taking quick snapshots. Perhaps next time, I’ll get a room 🙂

  5. So great meeting up with a fellow blogger – must take a bit of arranging! And an old friend – very special after a gap of 20+ years. What fun you had with the snooty hotel manager and good for you for not getting intimidated!

    • Hard to intimidate this gal 😉 I now have met so many blogging pals, I’ve lost track. It’s actually quite easy since I’m the one traveling around!

  6. I’m late to the party! Doh!
    It was a blast meeting you and we will have to parallel park in some desolate part of the world soon! 🚙
    It’s been forever since I’ve been down there.. didn’t go to the hotel. I will put it on the list 😃

    • Today we’re in Baraboo and we’ll eventually head up into the UP. Won’t head west until after Labor Day at which time we’ll do a fast clip back to CO. We’ve enjoyed our Midwestern adventure thus far but definitely won’t make it a regular thing.

  7. What a fun post! Does your son read your blog? I wonder if he cringed if so! My daughter is pretty private but she allows me to show off her #1 son. With that said, the nursery came out fabulous, but she won’t let me post a picture. The baby’s name, etc., isn’t for public consumption. So maybe after the baby FINALLY gets here I can post it. LOL

  8. I’ve been past the Baker Hotel – it looks like a cool place from a time gone by. It sounds like you are enjoying your trip, but j am sure you miss looking at the mountains. The great prairies of southern Wisconsin are interesting, too. Enjoy!

    • Yes, I am definitely starting to miss the west but still enjoying retracing steps in WI. We have some fun things planned if the weather will hold out. Fingers crossed. The humidity is tough on us.

      • It’s tough on me, too. The school’s AC goes off at 4 – sharp and the humidity pops right up. Right now in basement with tornado warning – stay cool and dry, tomorrow brings better weather.

    • Since this wasn’t my first Rodeo, I planned an excuse the moment I walked in and started snooping around. The check-in gal didn’t know what to make of me when I sat down in the lobby and made myself comfortable all the while snapping photos.

  9. St. Charles is a great place, as is Geneva…pretty pricey to live in but has great restaurants and shops (Little Traveler comes to mind in Geneva). I’ve never had the nerve to walk into the Baker Hotel..Probably because I usually look like I should be in Goodwill Store…I DO love your pose with the statue…Great look!!!

    • Thanks Donna. It was so hot and humid and I’d already strolled around waiting for my friend that I needed a potty break and some cool A/C – the Hotel Baker seemed perfect 😉 Although St. Charles is lovely, I hear the shops are much better in Geneva.

      • I do not mind the weather here. I have been to Mexico and sweated more. There is not the high heat with humidity here plus we get a breeze or an afternoon rain to cool things down a bit. In Nevada you did not sweat when it was 108 to 115 degrees and did not go out in the heat of the day. I go out in the heat of the day in Florida with plenty of water and sunscreen and a big hat though. A bit much in the rain department with flooding here in July and August, but this desert lizard is learning to adapt – ha!

Comments are closed.