Toms River NJ – family, friends fun…

We arrived at Surf and Stream in Toms River, NJ on Wednesday, Aug 5.  It was a short drive day, about 114 miles and took us about 2 1/2 hours, with only one quick potty break.

After arriving, Jo wasn’t feeling very well, but the rest of us were ready to head to the boardwalk.  Away we went – neither Craig, nor Alberto had been to a boardwalk before.

crossing the causeway from Toms River to Seaside Heights
crossing the causeway from Toms River to Seaside Heights
Bill and the peg-leg pirate
Bill and the peg-leg pirate
Craig enjoying a Jersey tradition - roasted corn on the cob!
Craig enjoying a Jersey tradition – roasted corn on the cob!
this used to be one of my fav rides, don't think I could ride it anymore, unless I want to be dizzy
this used to be one of my fav rides, don’t think I could ride it anymore, unless I want to be dizzy
Craig wanted to treat us to the sky-ride - its a great way to see the sunset
Craig wanted to treat us to the sky-ride – its a great view!
beautiful sunset
beautiful sunset
for those who are unaware, Seaside Heights is where the roller coaster went into the ocean during Hurricane Sandy
for those who are unaware, Seaside Heights is where the roller coaster went into the ocean during Hurricane Sandy
another view from the sky ride
another view from the sky ride
Alberto playing skee ball for the first time - I know - it doesn't say skee ball, but it's a version of it
Alberto playing skee ball for the first time
this is an OLD carousel
this is an OLD carousel
here is some info about it
here is some info about it
Alberto playing in front of the silly mirrors
Alberto playing in front of the silly mirrors
Craig too!
Craig too!
we didn't know there was going to be fireworks - how cool was that?
we didn’t know there was going to be fireworks – how cool was that?

image

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We have been pretty much go, go, go since arriving here.  Jo and Craig left for TX with Alberto on Thursday, and later that afternoon Billy and Renee arrived.  Then, still later, Shannon got here with Boo.  FULL HOUSE!

While waiting for Shannon to arrive, the 4 of us headed down to Seaside Boardwalk to “walk the boards”.  Walking the boards is a fav summer past-time when you live on the Jersey Shore.  At least to Bill and I it is, and we always took the kids when we lived here and also when we visited.  Our fav boardwalk is further south, Ocean City, NJ boardwalk, but we will be there later this month.

the SawMill is a Seaside Heights tradition, we used to get hot dogs there years ago.
the SawMill is a Seaside Heights tradition, we used to get hot dogs there years ago.
this area is new since Hurricane Sandy
this area is new since Hurricane Sandy
Billy might have met his match in air-hockey
Billy might have met his match in air-hockey
they both play to win!
they both play to win!
there just happened to be a beer fest going on - guess who wanted to attend?
there just happened to be a beer fest going on – guess who wanted to attend?
since it was all about the beer, which neither Renee nor I drink, we paid only the designated driver fee and we got
since it was all about the beer, which neither Renee nor I drink, we paid only the designated driver fee and we got “x”ed. No drinking for us!
the guys discussing the finer points of beer - they both take it very serioulsy
the guys discussing the finer points of beer – they both take it very serioulsy
the band they had playing was actually pretty good
the band they had playing was actually pretty good
I asked the guy wearing this where he got it - would love to get one for hubby!
I asked the guy wearing this where he got it – would love to get one for hubby!
Billy decided to try out guitar hero
Billy decided to try out guitar hero – to Gun’s and Roses “Welcome to the Jungle”
Billy - getting silly - and adorable all at the same time!
Billy – getting silly – and adorable all at the same time!

After leaving the boardwalk with the 2 drunk guys, we met Shannon and went home.  What a full-house we had!  Billy was supposed to bring a tent, but he saw in pics that it was all gravel and decided against it, and/or forgot it, we aren’t sure which.  Anyway, Billy and Renee put the airbed on the floor and Shannon slept on the couch – very cozy!  But, we managed.

The next day, Shannon went to see some people in Keansburg while the rest of us went to the beach at Island Beach State Park.  It was a completely perfect beach day!

amazing! LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the Jersey shore!
amazing! LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the Jersey shore!
Billy and Renee going in!
Billy and Renee going in!
No where I'd rather be!
No where I’d rather be!

My brother, Jay and his new bride, Caroline, came down to see us, and the rig for the first time.

chilling by the campfire!
chilling by the campfire!  Making marshmallows!
Jay and Caroline - and the photobomber - Shannon!
Jay and Caroline – and the photobomber – Shannon!

We also got to spend some time with our niece (and Goddaughter) Jaime, who is Jay’s daugher, and her BF Matt.  We went to see their apartment and then took off, originally we were going to walk around Keansburg, where we used to take the kids sometimes in the summers.

Jaime and one of her kitties, Holley.
Jaime and one of her kitties, Holley.
turns out, Keansburg wasn't open it, so we needed a Plan B!
turns out, Keansburg wasn’t open it, so we needed a Plan B!
a little further down RT 36 and we saw this! Plan B - here we come!
a little further down RT 36 and we saw this! Plan B – here we come!
This became our Plan B - a visit to my FAV lighthouse, Sandy Hook! It is the oldest continuous use lighthouse in the USA!
Sandy Hook -It is the oldest continuous use lighthouse in the USA!
these are my two fav's, Sandy Hook and also Twin Lights
these are my two fav’s, Sandy Hook and also Twin Lights
all the Jersey lighthouses
all the Jersey Shore lighthouses
our tour guide for the climb! I haven't climbed it in YEARS!
our tour guide for the climb! I haven’t climbed it in YEARS!
a peek out the window
a peek out the window – those houses are part of Fort Hancock
up and up we go! Jaime and Matt
up and up we go! Jaime and Matt
the lens
the lens
view from the top - see the hook? This is the only NJ beach that is actually getting larger b/c of the way the sand deposits during normal tides and also in storms
view from the top – see the hook? This is the only NJ beach that is actually getting larger b/c of the way the sand deposits during normal tides and also in storms

After climbing back down, we decided to go tour an officers home.

Fort Hancock
Fort Hancock
kitchen
kitchen
parlor
parlor
dining room
dining room
master bedroom
master bedroom
Jaime standing on the front porch
Jaime standing on the front porch

After all that touring, we were HUNGRY!

I was able to snap this quick before heading over the bridge! My second fav lighthouse, Twin Lights!
I was able to snap this quick before heading over the bridge! My second fav lighthouse, Twin Lights!

We headed back to Keyport and somehow we learned that my brother was actually not working that day, he had switched his day off with someone else.  We had already decided on Mike’s Subs, a local Keyport institution.

this place has looked exactly the same as it has for forever - even after Hurricane Sandy devastated it and they had to rebuild from scratch - same owners since it opened! They still make their subs the exact same way as they always have - delish!
this place has looked exactly the same as it has for forever – even after Hurricane Sandy devastated it and they had to rebuild from scratch – same owners since it opened! They still make their subs the exact same way as they always have – delish!
I really need to try and remember to take pics of food before I start eating it!
I really need to try and remember to take pics of food before I start eating it!  Turkey, rare roast beef, tomato, onion, shredded lettuce, mayo, light oil & vinegar, secret spices, salt/pepper.  YUMMY!
Jay rode his bike down and met us at the bulkhead
Jay rode his bike down and met us at the bulkhead
Jaime and I
Jaime and I – she looks like me, don’t you think?

I mentioned before about my brother and his new bride.  Jay and Caroline have been together for a LONG time, probably 20 years, but just recently got married.  They had a small private ceremony and celebration with just them and their kids.  I told Jay when we were in the area, we wanted to take them out to a nice dinner to celebrate their new marriage.  They picked a great place, Scarborough Fair in Sea Girt.

very pretty place!
very pretty place!
Bill and I
Bill and I
my brother and
my brother and “officially” new sister in law, Caroline
the four of us
the four of us

Congrat’s to the newlyweds!  It was a great evening of celebrating!

Another night, Gene and Eileen, who are part of our RV family, were passing by and boondocking at the Borgota in Atlantic City for the night.  We aren’t very far from there, so we drove down to have dinner with them.

almost there - Atlantic City!
almost there – Atlantic City!
after picking them up at the Borgota, we headed closer to the boardwalk to park - ended up at Trump Taj Mahal
after picking them up at the Borgota, we headed closer to the boardwalk to park – ended up at Trump Taj Mahal, which is right on the boardwalk
sun getting ready to set
sun getting ready to set
we decided to eat at LandShark, right on the water, very cool place!
we decided to eat at LandShark, right on the water, very cool place!
they had this awesome fire pit
they had this awesome fire pit
great view of the rides
great view of the rides
Gene and Bill - discussing something important - no idea what
Gene and Bill – discussing something important – no idea what
Eileen and I - 2 Jersey Girls!
Eileen and I – 2 Jersey Girls!
great backdrop
great background – Atlantic Ocean!
walking on the boardwalk
walking on the boardwalk
a boardwalk isn't complete without a Margaritaville!
a boardwalk isn’t complete without a Margaritaville!
we finished off the evening with a couple games of skee ball - I think Gene had the high score!
we finished off the evening with a couple games of skee ball – I think Gene had the high score!  We gave a small boy all the tickets we won – he was so excited!

One of our favorite days, it really is hard to pick just one, was the day my brother-in-law had a big picnic.  He doesn’t like his pic taken or posted publicly, but I have a few I don’t think he will mind.

this is John and Susan's turkey, Jerky. They used to have 3, but one got lose and the other was killed, I think by a fox
this is John and Susan’s turkey, Jerky. They used to have 3, but one got lose and the other was killed, I think by a fox.  They used to have chickens also, but they met the same fate as the unfortunate turkey.
This is Bella - their cat. Could be my son's cat's twin
This is Bella – their cat. Could be my son’s cat’s twin
me with a old dear friend, Gina, who was visiting from SC
me with a old dear friend, Gina, who was visiting from SC
Bill and I sitting in our comfy chairs
Bill and I sitting in our comfy chairs
the pool was a great relief from the heat of the day
the pool was a great relief from the heat of the day
my friends kids, Olivia and Juliette
my friends kids, Olivia and Juliette
Michael, Juliette and Johanna
Michael, Juliette and Johanna
Bill - he says it was comfy, I'm not so sure
Bill – he says it was comfy, I’m not so sure
L to R - Gina, me, Bill, John, Susan, Jimmy, Johanna, Michael. In the front, the 2 young girls are Olivia and Juliette
L to R – Gina, me, Bill, John, Susan, Jimmy, Johanna, Michael. In the front, the 2 young girls are Olivia and Juliette

After filling ourselves with yummy burgers, hot dogs, potato salad, orzo salad, cookies and brownies, we didn’t want the day to end, so we decided to all head to the boardwalk.

another one of my former fav rides, the swings
another one of my former fav rides, the swings
its still one of Olivia's fav rides
its still one of Olivia’s fav rides
I would NEVER go on this one!
I would NEVER go on this one!
Michael and I, we grew up together, Bill and I lived with him for a while back in the day, he is like my brother from another mother
Michael and I, we grew up together, Bill and I lived with him for a while back in the day, he is like my brother from another mother
Michael is a bit addicted to the Wizard of Oz game, but to his credit, he got all the needed cards for 30,000 point bonus!
Michael is a bit addicted to the Wizard of Oz game, but to his credit, he got all the needed cards for 30,000 point bonus!
If I had a house I might have bought this
If I had a house I might have bought this, but now I am happy just having a pic of it!
Michael just couldn't leave without a sausage sandwich from Midway!
Michael just couldn’t leave without a sausage sandwich from Midway!

One of our last nights in town, we FINALLY got together with friends, Glenn and MariLou.  Last time we saw them (together – Glenn came to see us in FL), we took a sunset sail, and since we had such a great time, we decided to do that again!  What an awesome evening for a sail!  Glenn and MariLou have been our friends since we lived in Toms River many years ago.  We attended the same church and spent a lot of time together with our kids,  they have 4 children and their younger 2 are the same ages as Michelle and Billy.  Their older 2 are several years older and their daughter, Shana (who is now married with 2 kids of her own) used to babysit for us sometimes.  We have kept in touch all these years (we left Toms River in 1996) and it is always great to see them!  There was a slight chance of a thunderstorm, but it never happened!  There was wind though, plenty of it!  Most of the time when the sun is getting ready to set, the wind dies and you have to motor back in, but not that night – we sailed almost all the way to the dock!  Thanks again Cap’t Eric and to his wife as well, she took some great pics and shared them with us!

My happy guy!
My happy guy!
Glenn - checking the
Glenn – checking the “tells” – which way is the wind going?
me - and my fav purple cup filled with my fav run & coke!
me – and my fav purple cup filled with my fav run & coke!
I know it's of the back of her head, but I love this one of MariLou - she is just relaxing and enjoying the peace and calm
I know it’s of the back of her head, but I love this one of MariLou – she is just relaxing and enjoying the peace and calm – although notice the threatening clouds?
the four of us plus Cap't Eric
the four of us plus Cap’t Eric
LOVE the Toms River!
LOVE the Toms River!
Riverboat tours of the river and Barnegat Bay
River Lady tours of the river and Barnegat Bay
this isn't a real lighthouse, just part of the Marina
this isn’t a real lighthouse, just part of the Marina

The last thing I want to talk about is Bill going out on his motorcycle.  He keeps it at John’s and was looking forward to taking it out.  He also has a small day-sailer he needed to work on and hopefully get out on the water.

All geared up!
All geared up!
his bike is a Kawasaki KLR 650 - its street legal but also able to be taken off road.
his bike is a Kawasaki KLR 650 – its street legal but also able to be taken off road.
his little sail boat, a Gloucester 16
his little sail boat, a Gloucester 16

I do believe that is all for now – Jo and Craig are back from TX with Alberto and we are heading over there for dinner.  Tomorrow we leave for Ocean City, NJ, a short drive day – might take 1 1/2 hours.  We are hoping to get in a lot more beach time!  You will have to check back to see how we make out with that!

Ok – one more small thing – the featured pic was taken near my brother-in-laws house, it has been like this for a long time,  I believe it is painted by a veteran’s group, but I’m not sure.  It’s been like this for years!