mama j & the big 50


Oh, this lady.

A couple of years ago, after working harvest in the cellar, she came to work in the tasting room at Erath with us. She was honest, hard-working and somewhere between the jingling of the thousand bangles she wore on her wrist and the exclamation of "Sweet baby Jesus" at most turns, we all fell in love with her.

So flash to a couple weeks ago when her amazing husband Mark got in touch to let us all in on the big plan for Mama Jamma's big 5-0… Oh, but he and her oldest daughter were cooking up something good!

Maris Gras Murder Mystery.

Guys… This was at once the worst and most brilliant idea ever.

Best because I mean hey, no one knows how to throw a party like the Erath crew (at least we entertain ourselves). 

I mean, come on now… We are good at anything involving wine and bourbon and cheese. 

Really good.

But worst idea ever because let's be honest… We all remember last Thanksgiving and what happened when Janna found the bourbon.

Entertainment ensued. 

And she and Scott (I mean Batman… I mean Zorro… I mean, I don't know, he changed his mind - but not the mask - a few times over the course of the evening) basically declared their love for each other.

Friday night was no different really, except we were all in costume.

I mean fine, it was your average Friday night but with cake but whatever… Did I mention there as wine?

But truly, the best part of all of this was getting to celebrate this incredible woman who we all love so much. 

I for one know that my life wouldn't be what it is without her (or Mark for that matter).

This woman has loved me and prayed for me when I really thought I was crumbling. She has a bizarre and insane ability to know when something is wrong and when to swoop in at that last second, just when I think I'm about to lose my sh*t (sorry to be crass, but let's face it, that's the only way to describe it sometimes). 

There are few people who live their lives with as much love and honesty. When Jesus said "Follow me" and told us to love like he does, Janna listened. She is not perfect, and she'll be the first to tell you so (again, let me reference the Thanksgiving Weekend Bourbon Debacle of 2012 - though for the record, that was hilarious and we all may or may not have encouraged it at the time) but one thing she always gets right is loving on the people around her.

Her faith and her love are something there are no words for. She is something entirely special and she has fought hard for where she is right now.

Happy birthday, Janna!

I hope you always know how treasured you are.

(Janna and Patt… Jodi and I are convinced these two are our guardian angels)


  1. SO FUN! Now where are those photos from NC? : )