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Wordless Wednesdays: NJ Vacation Highlights

Howdy, folks! I am trying to get back into a Carolina mindset, after spending the past week up in NJ/NY. We headed up north last Monday, to spend a week visiting family and enjoying the area. We stayed with my Uncles Chris and Jim, and my Gram (Alice), stayed with us, as well. With six adults, one child, and four dogs in the same house for one week, you can bet we had a good 'ol time!

We got to see and do a lot of really neat things last week. I thought it would be fun to share some of the highlights of our trip.

It was awesome for B to be reunited with his G. G., my Grandmother, Alice.

We enjoyed treats from Carlo's Bake Shop (yeah- the one from TV- Cake Boss!) for the first time.

I couldn't wait to taste the Carlo's Crumb Bun. Look at the crumb on this thing!

We visited the LEGOLand Discovery Center Westchester, in Yonkers, NY.

B loved the giant DUPLO blocks!

G. G. gifted a new bike to B, and he learned to ride it in Radburn Park.

We loved playing in Radburn Park!

B helped G. G. take Molly for her walks in the park.

We even got to watch the crew set up for the Family Day celebration!

We ate lunch at Bobby's Burger Palace- one of Bobby Flay's burger joints.

We visited with my Great Aunts, Uncles and cousins...

We took the NJ Transit Bus to Port Authority in NYC...

...and went to Toys 'R Us in Times Square! We just so happened to meet a Minion or two!

...and a Jurassic Park dinsosaur!

We got VIP treatment at The Empire State Building. *My Uncle Jim works in this building, and we got to jump ALL of the lines for express entry up to the 86th floor observation deck! That was awesome! It was super crowded, and would have taken us a couple of hours to get up there, if we'd had to wait in those lines! Thanks, Uncle Jim! This was an incredible experience- a first time experience for Sacha, and for B.

Just a partial view of the city from the 86th floor of the Empire State Building.

Can you spot the Statue of Liberty?

The new World Trade Center Tower in the background...

B, looking out on the city. He was totally awestruck.

We then trekked to Becco, one of Lidia Bastianich's NYC restaurants. (Yes- Lidia of Lidia's Italy, which usually airs on PBS.)

We enjoyed the three pasta lunch. Mangia, mangia- Italiano!

Enjoying the Mushroom Ravioli at Becco (my 2nd time dining there). Yum!

Recognize this? It's Macy's in Herald Square.

On Sunday, we worshipped at Hillsong Church in Montclair, NJ. 

We also made another trip to Carlo's! Is your mouth watering?

Cream Puff!

One of the many cakes on display at Carlo's...

Carlo's specialty cakes...

Everyday occasion cakes...

Wedding cakes and more!

Lots of Carlo's goodies and merch...

Front of the bakery in Ridgewood. Note- this is not the original Carlo's, which is in Hoboken.

Enjoying a freshly filled Carlo's Cannoli! It was so delicious!

I had an incredible time with my family. It is always so good to go back to the area where I spent the first decade of my life. We even drove by the house I grew up in... and it looks the same. Sometimes I wonder what my life would be like if we had never left that area, however, I am very thankful that my parents put me and my sister first, made the tough decision to leave our family and move down to North Carolina, where there was a better opportunity for us to thrive as a family. I wish each and every day, that I lived closer to my relatives. Visiting them just makes me want to live near them, but certainly makes me appreciate them more, as well.

I am crossing my fingers that perhaps our next family cruise will include my uncles, and my Gram, or that we'll all take a nice family vacation to the beach for a week. I'd love for all of us to be together- very soon!

Thanks for taking a look at the fun we had last week! Can't wait for another fun adventure, so we can make new memories and share some great photos and stories with you!


  1. Looks like you guys had a lot of fun! Uncle Dan would have loved all of those things....except going up the Empire State Building (I would have loved that!)!!!
    Love you!! Aunt Susan

    1. We did have fun- I was thinking about the time we ALL took that big family trip to Charleston. We had so much fun. I wish we had done more of that... we should have a big 'ol reunion! :) Love you & hope you're having a great visit with your family!!


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