Hello! How is everyone today? I am starting this post on July 1! It is the 4th of July weekend and that is a BIG deal, especially here on the Jersey Shore! Nothing says summer has arrived and is in full swing like celebrating the birth of our nation!
I had briefly talked before about family picnics when I was a child, with the hamburgers, hot dogs, BBQ chicken, sausage sandwiches, potato salad, my Grandma’s crab macaroni salad, cole slaw, and most importantly – corn on the cob! If there had been a lot of overtime recently there may have been steaks! Wow – a feast – that is now causing me to salivate as I remember each plate and bowl full of the homemade creations – there wasn’t any store bought anything on the table! Each family member contributed their specialty! Let’s not forget the desserts: ice cream, rice krispy treats, ambrosia salad (my Nana called it “one cup salad” because it was made with one cup of each ingredient!), brownies, etc. Yes – we would eat our way through the day!
And then later – standing on Nana’s back deck – FIREWORKS! We could see several towns from all around the bay – our heads jerking back and forth – ohhh! Ahhh! Look at that one! Did you see THAT?!?
Someone would get us kids sparklers – I LOVED sparklers! I loved how bright they were against the dark sky and the sizzly sound they made! My brother preferred the firecrackers – the ones that were twisted together and when you lit them you threw it on the ground and the whole pack would go off. POP POP POP! When he got older he liked the M80’s – one of the neighborhood boys put an M80 in someone’s mailbox and blew it up one year – that was LOUD! Sent parents running outside to she what had happened! Bill stepped on a sparkler once – OUCH! You may be wondering so I will say – no he wasn’t wearing shoes – no one wore shoes back then – probably between the last day of school and first day back – no shoes! The sparkler stuck to his foot and caused quite the burn!
The campground started filling up on Wednesday before the weekend, and when we went in on Thursday there was a small traffic jam of campers coming to check in for their extended weekend.
By Friday, sites were almost at full capacity. Lynn had opened up the few unoccupied seasonal sites so we turned away fewer people, same as for Memorial Day. Checking AccuWeather, we learned that an awesome weekend, weather wise, was expected. YAY! We spent a bit of time in the pool,
Our work schedule was switched around a bit due to the holiday – as it was for Memorial Day. We didn’t work our usual day shift on Sunday, but instead covered 5pm – 10pm.
Saturday, friends from Reading, Lisa & Matt, stopped by for lunch here at Country Oaks. We were so busy chatting and catching up on news that we forgot a pic! Thanks guys for the subs!
We were invited for ribs by new CG friend, Tina and WOW! they were yummy!
We worked our day shift hours on Monday and looked forward to our days off! Tuesday, on the 4th, we headed to see Batsto Historic Village. Bill had been wanting to see it, as we’ve passed signs for it many times.
According to their website:
“Batsto Village, is a New Jersey historic site located in the South Central Pinelands, which is administered by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s Division of Parks & Forestry. This site is nationally recognized for its historical significance and beauty. The roots of Batsto Village can be traced back to 1766. Two centuries of American history are available to visitors, with the Pinelands environment as a scenic backdrop.”
We had been planning to go to Ocean City to watch fireworks from the boards, but a text from our friends, Tony & Ulrica, squashed that idea. While excited at the prospect of seeing fireworks, we also knew that parking would probably be a nightmare and I was ambivalent at the prospect of standing shoulder to shoulder with strangers. So, after a 30 second chat, we happily took Tony up on his invite to join them for dinner! Since Batsto was already on the way toward their house, we went straight there when we finished up our tour.
Wednesday, Bill loaded the bikes on the back of the car. Since we’ve arrived here in NJ, we’ve been talking about a ride with my brother and today was that day! Another perfect weather day, thankfully! Jay rides it all the time, but I had never rode on the Henry Hudson Trail, which is part of the NJ Rails to Trails system. I added 12 miles on the odometer Bill installed for me and I even got to use my new bell! Boardwalk fries – complete with vinegar – was a delish snack choice when we hopped off the trail on a side-trip stop at Keansburg Boardwalk.
Keansburg doesn’t really have boards, which makes it a unique “boardwalk”. It’s just blacktop. What makes it special is it’s where we visited as kids with our family’s. It was a special treat, back in the day, to go spend a few hours going on the rides and having a Zeppole. Most of the rides are for the younger kids, in fact, when my kids were small we brought them to Keansburg a few times when visiting my family.
So, that about wraps up our 4th of July week. We enjoyed great sunny weather and time spent with family and friends.