Better than planned…

Welcome to the big time.  Now if you Google search or type you will come right to this blog!  I’m excited. Ok, I’m over it.

Today I went down to the park in Wall to eat my lunch and play some wall ball. Now, as a constant (occasional) reader of this blog I have talked about and described what wall ball is.  It is a eye-hand coordination drill where you throw the lacrosse ball against a wall and catch it (hopefully) It was cold today. Another day in the mid forties and windy. I decided to try to shoot some video of me doing this wall ball thing.

I was of course alone, so I set the phone on the ground pointing towards the wall and turned on the video camera function. As you will see in this video, it turned out better (funnier) than I could have planned.


Pretty funny? I was surprised by the outcome.  I hope you enjoyed!




Flying on my own tonight..

The last two nights I’ve had DS2 as my wingman writing this blog. He poked me one night and sent me pictures the next night. With just a little inspiration, I can make up the rest.  I have been thinking or wondering, if it is correct to blog about the blogs you follow?  Hmmm. I decided that I would share a few of the blogs that I follow just in case you were looking for some variety.  So, in no particular order are the blogs that I follow:

My DW just walked by and asked “What are you doing?” I said “Working on my blog, making a list a few of my favorite things!” There could be a song in there. I would have to ask my oldest sister about that.

I worked in the office again today. I was  able to have a mostly peaceful day since the resident “not sure what word should go here” was not in the office.  At lunch time I went down to the Wind Mill for hotdogs. Afterwards I shot two videos. One video, seen here, is of the trash pile at the Belmar Marina. This trash pile was created when some of the debris from Hurricane Sandy was collected from the streets of Belmar and the surrounding area.  The second video, seen here, was shot on Ocean Ave in Belmar. You still can not drive on Ocean Ave and if you linger too long, the rent – a – cop will chase you away.  It was chilly here today and the camera in my phone did not focus as well as it should. Maybe when I dropped in it in Scranton two weeks ago I did some damage.

One picture to go with the two videos. This is a picture of my lunch. Oh, Wednesday is buy one, get one for senior citizens.  I had a BOGO coupon from the internet. The restaurant looked like the senior bus had stopped by. That is not a bad thing, just really busy. Maybe next time I will visit on Thursday. It is less crowded on Thursdays.



Two dogs, chili and cheese

Judgemental Tuesday..

Yesterday was Non – Judgemental Monday in my life. What a struggle. I decided when I woke up that I would not judge anyone for an entire day. Did I really think of this first thing when I was getting out of bed? Yea, actually, I did.  We all judge others by whatever criteria that we feel that we have mastered. At least that is how it works for me.  I did not judge the other people driving to and from work (help me!), nor did I judge my co-workers (struggle) or even the telemarketer that called during dinner.

Today, being Judgmental Tuesday, I was released from my vows of non-judgement. And, if I say so myself, I made up for yesterday!  It’s a good thing that I drive to work alone and have my own office.  I will leave it at that.  Yesterday was also a red-letter day in my coffee world. I took a coffee bath first thing in the morning at work when I dumped my 20 oz latte (home-made) on my desk, lap, chair and floor.  My office smelled like coffee for the rest of the day.  We also received our monthly shipment of fresh roasted coffee from the Orleans Coffee Exchange.  I had some of the new coffee this morning. I like to try the various Central American coffees that they offer.

It snowed in Scranton, PA today. DS2 sent a picture (down below) of the campus with snow on the ground. Here in New Jersey it only rained. DS2 also sent pictures of the new Marywood Wind Ensemble shirts that were delivered today as well. Those pictures are below.  DS3 has not yet forwarded me the pictures he took at Thanksgiving, they are NOT below (hint, hint).

Work for me was busy, somewhat stressful.  My DW worked a full day. There is some silliness going on in her department and she is trying her best to stay out of the conflict. Yea, mom!  DS1 was home early today. He walked in from the gym as I was getting home from work.  I watched the current episode of The Walking Dead at lunch time. It was a disturbing episode. Kind of like watching NASCAR for the wrecks. 

My DW and I went to adult school yoga tonight and are “re-centered” once again. I really enjoy that class.

So, the pictures are already described, so here they are without captions. Enjoy!


Poked or maybe prodded…

It is Monday night here in NJ. Monday night means lacrosse for boys and yoga for girls. I played with the usual Monday night crowd at the Robbinsville Field House. The owners have finally fixed all the lights. All of them. When we started playing there about four years ago, all the lights worked. Then gradually, one by one, the lights would burn out and not get replaced. Then Sandy happened and the owners had to fix the lights. There is the silver lining from the storm. I had a few shots, caught a few passes. I did not score nor did I get hurt.  I had a good night.  My DW went to yoga at the Ocean Club. She said there were six students this week. One of them was a pregnant lady who, did not go into labor during yoga.  Good deal.

I spoke with DS2 this evening, second night in a row that he called to chat. Apparently he is unhappy with the lapse in my blog writing. He poked and prodded me.  Tonight’s blog is dedicated to him. He said that tonight was the fall Jazz concert. Note to the Marywood music department: How are the parents of the musicians supposed to attend a concert on a Monday night? We would have gone if the show was a Friday night, anytime Saturday or on a Sunday.  I don’t get it. He said the show went well. He also spoke of dodging a car in the cross walk in front of the music building. It’s good thing he is nimble on his toes.

Sunday he drove back to school from Lowville, NY. He said that the there was some snow on the highway north of Syracuse. He has very little prior experience driving in the snow. We live near the ocean in southern New Jersey, Sandy country. This is not an area known for snow fall in the winter. And while he has lived in Scranton now for the some part of three years of college, he will not usually venture out in his car if the roads are snow-covered.

Saturday, November 24 was spent doing the usual Saturday chores. We actually succumbed to the Black Friday sales (planned purchase waiting for a deal) and bought a 55 inch Samsung LED tv. This set replaced the tv in the cellar which was an old tube style tv.  Our other HD tv upstairs is 11 years old and still working. The picture on the new set is unbelievable. We have lived with a HD tv for 11 years and are blown away by the improvements that have been made to HD sets during that time. We spent Saturday night and some of Sunday watching college and professional football.

Sunday, DS3 drove back to school. He was home for the Thanksgiving break. He spent most of his vacation evenings with his girlfriend.  He will be camping this coming weekend with the ROTC boys and girls at Fort Dix, here in New Jersey. Fort Dix is about 25 minutes from our home. I have not looked at the weather yet, but I hope it will be nice.

Note to DS3: You took a few pictures at Thanksgiving and were supposed to put them in my Drop Box? Did you or could you? Thanks!

There you go DS2. I will try to be more faithful to my blog writing. Here are a few pictures from the last couple of days. The captions will tell the story. Enjoy!


I like exciting, but..

Here we are, Friday evening, November 23, 2012. The end of the Mayan calendar is rapidly approaching. I’m undecided about either purchasing Christmas presents or paying my December bills.  Depending on which way things go, I could be brilliant or not so much.  Yesterday was Thanksgiving here in the United States. This is a day where we (hopefully) gather with family and maybe friends and are thankful for what we have. Then the North American winter sets in and we set our sights on May Day.

Each year we celebrate Thanksgiving with my MIL.  This year she turned 80 and her husband is 90 ish. They are slowing down. Really, you ask? Yep, slowing down. Grandma made her homemade manicotti again this year. From scratch. This is the highlight of the holiday feast. She also made the turkey. Last year I fried the Thanksgiving turkey. She want to cook the turkey this year. As a side note, the turkey was not as dry this year as other years. Since she does not have a computer or access to the internet, my critique should go unnoticed.

DS2 spent Thanksgiving in upstate NY with his girlfriend. This is the first Thanksgiving that any of our children have not been home. I’m guessing that it probably won’t be the last. I told DS2 that he will be home for Christmas.  Please.  He sent several pictures from his travels and called on Thanksgiving to chat.

Friday was/is Black Friday here in the US.  The day is called Black Friday since this is the beginning of the Christmas shopping season and the day that many retailers go into the black (make money) for the year. Crazy sales, crazy store hours, lines and the usual story about people be trampled somewhere when the store opens. Me, I skipped the nonsense all together. I bought no gifts today. I looked around later in the day but I certainly was not up at 5 am to go get that particular gift.

Dinner tonight was lobster. The local grocery store has them on sale for 4.99 today and tomorrow. DS1, my DW and I had lobster. DS3 and his GF had steak. Go figure. I would have enjoyed both!

Exciting.. Ok.  We (my DW and I) are LSU football fans. Why? I’m not really sure. Maybe because we wish we lived in New Orleans. Maybe our adoption of some of the regional cooking styles and flavors. I’m not sure exactly why. We watched the game this afternoon vs Arkansas.  This was another “exciting” game that they won. Most people like a football game that is evenly matched and the outcome is not known until the very end. I’m getting tired of the last 6 seconds being “hold your breath” and pray. If they win, does that matter in the big picture? Not really. I did cheer!  Geaux Tigers!

Pictures, here are a few with captions.  Enjoy!




You’ve seen the devastation now..

That would be on the sign that I would paint next to my painfully empty restaurant in Point Pleasant Beach. The entire sign would read:

You’ve see the devastation –

Taken your pictures –

Now spend some money

before you leave!

Thank You!

That was me today, gawking at the devastation and spending some money.  I work about ten minutes from Point Pleasant Beach. The boardwalk here was (is) dominated by Jenkinsons and  Martel’s Tiki Bar. It looks like a lot of the Jenkinsons property (from the road) is fairly ok. I did not go up to the boardwalk. Most of the ocean side of Ocean Ave was blocked off.

I ate lunch at Perk’s Cafe on Ocean Ave. When I walked into the restaurant at 1:20 pm, I made a total of two customers in the business. I know it’s the off-season and there was a hurricane, but how can a business survive like that?  While I was eating a group of construction workers came in and ate lunch. I think that is a hopeful sign.

After I left the business I shot this video driving north on Ocean Ave up to the Manasquan Inlet.   Enough said.

Three weeks down, the rest of eternity to rebuild.


Thanksgiving Adopt a Family..

Saturday started early. I was up at 4 am and out of the house by 4:40 am. My destination was Scranton, PA. Yesterday was the Annual Thanksgiving Adopt-A-Family at Marywood University.  DS2 and I have been involved for the last three years. I stopped on my way into the city to take some sunrise over Scranton pictures at 7:20 am. It was 25 degrees out, and actually sunny. While I was taking pictures a car stopped and asked me for directions. I told them I lived in NJ, but would help if I could. They were trying to go back the way I had just come, so I could provide directions.

I stopped at Krispy Kreme and then drove to the university. DS2, 25 or 30 of his classmates and a few parents helped carry the ingredients for the thanksgiving bags in from the delivery vehicles. We assembled Bag One and Bag Two. Each family got one of each and a frozen turkey. After the bags were assembled, DS2 and I went to the Bucktown Diner for breakfast.

After breakfast we went back to school and collected the information about our six families, six of each bag and six turkeys and headed down I 81 to deliver. The nice thing about this year’s deliveries were that all the families lived in the same row of buildings. We just walked from door to door delivering. Eight residences, six deliveries.  As we did our deliveries we saw four other teams from Marywood delivering on other streets in the same area.

Our second delivery run was more interesting in that the two residences were nowhere near each other. No problem, I have a GPS in my car, right? I do. The first house was exactly where the GPS led us. The second house, not exactly. It appears that the road the GPS wanted us to drive on was a driveway in an industrial park. The road on the map went through, the reality is that the industrial park and the trailer park (where the house was), are not connected. Maybe that is why when you boot up the GPS there is a disclaimer that you have to click OK to.

After our delivers DS2 and I went downtown to Coney Island Hot Lunch for hot dogs and conversation. DS3 met us there since his school is a short five-minute walk uphill. They went for food, I went for conversation. We enjoyed our visit. DS1 got his hot dogs care package that he will enjoy for lunch this week.  I took the boys shopping at Giant for HBA stuff and said good-bye to DS2 at his dorm. Then DS3 and I went over to the turf field on the Marywood campus and shot around on the lacrosse net for about an hour and a half. I took him back his school (across town), grabbed a cup of coffee and drove home.

The ride home featured listening to the LSU vs. Ol Miss game on Sirius. What pitched battle! In the end LSU won!  Geaux Tigers!

I really enjoyed the day I spent with my “Scranton boys”.  Here are a few pictures from the day. Enjoy!


I want what that table is having..

“Words that you might say to your waiter” for $100.00, Alex.  Friday night my DW and I were eating dinner at our favorite restaurant and I said those words. My DW looked at me with a quizzical look on her face. “Umm, what do you mean?”, she asked me. I said, “Your eyes were closed and you were moaning while eating that Stone Crab Claw”. She blushed and smiled, “But it was just that good!”

Dinner Friday night was in out kitchen.  The fresh seafood from the Florida Keys was purchased from Keys Fisheries Fish Market and Marina. Just my kind of place, fresh fish and boats. How can you go wrong? They can be found at . This was our second order of stone crabs from them this season. Yes, it is expensive, but we had a little “fun money” to play with, so we splurged. We ordered Jumbo Stone Crabs, Yellow Tail Snapper Fillets, Smoked Fish Dip, Crab and Spinach Dip and Stone Crab Soup.

The stone crabs were in the top three stone crab meals that I have ever eaten. We have purchased them up and down both coasts of Florida over the years. Working in the Philadelphia Fish Market for 13 years also afford many opportunities to sample stone crabs.  The red snapper fillet was excellent. Again, as a fish person from a previous life, outstanding! We finished the snapper fillets last night. I cooked them real simple, butter and seasoning in a frying pan. No sauces, no breading. Just the fish. YUM!  The dips were good. The soup, that is waiting for an opportunity to enjoy. I have had a very busy weekend so far.  Fish from the keys? Shop on-line with Keys Fisheries.  We hope to visit them in January when We are down for the lacrosse tournament.

Here are few pictures from the Keys Fisheries website. Enjoy!


Kicked out of church, again..

I got kicked out of church again today at lunch time. Some people, me included, consider the “Great Outdoors” to the Church of the Open Sky. Ok, maybe it is only me that has that belief. No matter, I went down to the beach on Belmar to shoot some pictures and see what happened during and after the storm. While I was walking around, minding my own business, a local, summer cop, rousted me and told me that I could not walk on the street.  In his defense, he is probably tired of chasing disaster tourists.  In my defense, the sign on the  jersey barrier said that the road was closed, like to cars.  There was no mention about people. And, any of the work being done was far down the street from where I was standing.  He gets the Yertle the Turtle Award for the day. King of all the he can see. Google it..

Pictures – before and after. I’m sure you will be able to figure out which is which.  Here is a link to all 28 pictures that I shot today.



Moving towards normal..

If ever there was a normal. Maybe that should have been the title.  We are fortunate to have had very little damage (some tree branches) and the inconvenience of the power being out for two days.  Here are  a few signs that things in my neck of the words are on there way back:

  • I was in the bagel store this morning waiting my turn behind two young men (mid to late 20’s). Big burley men with beards and pickup trucks. Manly men. They were discussing the pro vs. cons of color, cut and clarity. I guess one or both are getting engaged this year.If you don’t understand the reference, just wait until you shop for an engagement ring.
  • Last night was Monday night lacrosse. The building we play in is still suffering from poor lighting this week. The main set of lights in the middle is still out. I took the initiative to check if the breakers were tripped during the storm and just needed to be reset. I reset them and took out the power for the entire building.  Ooopss.. I reset the main and the power came back on. Note to self: Don’t do that again. I did have a few shots and one assist. An assist on a goal, not an electrician’s assist.
  • The gasoline rationing north of Exit 91 on the GSP is over. That’s good. It never really affected us down in Ocean County.
  • The snow plow piles in the parking lot at work are almost gone. It snowed last week Wednesday into Thursday.
  • The NJ National Guard that I wrote about has broken camp and gone elsewhere. The parking lot is empty. Somebody needs to stop by and collect the porta potties next to the building.
  • LBI has been reopened. Now the real work begins.
  • Tuesday night Adult School Yoga resumed tonight. Ahhh.

I hope to get down to the beach at lunch time tomorrow. The plan is to take some pictures from my usual lunch time spot. They should make for some interesting before and after comparisons.

Here are a few pictures from the high school football game on Saturday afternoon. Enjoy!


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