We went back to New Jersey this past weekend. It was our first visit since the official move a month ago. The traffic heading north on Friday evening was very heavy so that part was not fun, but the weekend itself was great. It was a whirlwind, but it was great.
On Saturday morning we, along with the help of CC, did a final cleaning and clearing out of the old apartment. The kids were happy to spend time with him and I was happy that we could all be in the same place, working together with no tension or negative vibes. We shared a late pizza lunch before Shawnie and I left to go see her Grandma and CC and the kids went their own way. Grandma had us laughing and feeling special and Shawnie stole some fruit snacks from her house. Yup, I saw her.
Later on Saturday we attended a 30th birthday party for a friend. I shot her a quick message informing her that we were sorry but we were running late. She replied that it was totally fine, she was just glad that we were going to make it and that she’d make sure to save some food for us.
She did. We ate and then hit the dance floor. She was happy and had a great time so that was awesome.
On Sunday we went to brunch with one of my dearest friends and one of the few people that I miss back in New Jersey. We chose a local diner. By the way, here’s a bit of trivia, New Jerseyans LOVE diners. New Jersey has the most diners of any state. Another bit of food info? There’s a thing there called Pork Roll which isn’t available in any other state (I don’t think) and I’m not sure what it is exactly but it’s awesome on a kaiser roll with eggs, cheese and mustard.
Following brunch we surprised another friend with a visit. I told her that we really wanted to see her and all that but the truth is that I really wanted to see her sweet little 3 month old baby. He was so cute and cuddly and smelled new still. Her and her hubby are from the Philippines but we always joke that they were really meant to be Jamaican and wouldn’t you know it, hubby was wearing a “Jamaica” shirt when we got there – unannounced. Baby was wearing a kimono onesie thing (very Asian 🙂 ) which was cute as ever but I promised to get him his own Jamaican t-shirt soon. As we were leaving she made us some Thai iced tea and then gave us some instant packets so we could make it at home. So good.
Next we made our way to the mall. Another good thing about New Jersey (besides the diners and the pork roll and that attendants pump your gas for you at every gas station and gas is cheaper than most other states) is that there is no sales tax on clothes or shoes. Shawnie had wanted to get a new pair of shoes and we figured it was a good central place to meet up with CC. Shawnie did get new shoes. I also got new shoes. Or maybe I got 2 new pairs. It’s hard to remember. 😉
We met up with CC and his wife Emma around 5:00pm and after a little chit chat and hugs and CC giving me a hard dough bread that I love but don’t have any access to in Virginia but can be found on every street corner in New York, the kids loaded into our vehicle and we hit the turnpike to go home.
The thing is though, we made a last minute decision to pit stop in Philly.
Hey why not? One of my really dearest and longest time friends lives there and I hadn’t seen her in a while and she’d never met Shawnie. We talked and laughed and I raided her pantry while she cooked us dinner and even packed up left overs for lunch the next day.
OK so now we were really headed home. Except we made another stop. This time in Maryland. Since it was now so much later than we had planned to get to that area we didn’t get to hang out with anybody but my friend – You know her; the kids amazing Aunty Juddles – had set aside a box of Jamaican beef patties for us which her sweetheart of a husband delivered right to the car.
The take away from this post is that I am loved and spoiled and I have amazing friends and people in my life and I am now TIRED and was not at all happy with the alarm when it went off at 5:00 am. But my belly and fridge and heart are full!