Stood Up

I get kind of jittery when the phone rings lately. You never know when it could be a call from Publishers Clearinghouse that will wipe away all my worries with a big check or even an all-expense paid vacation. Or you never know when it might be a call from my new friend, Jen at Weichert Realty, looking to set up an appointment for a showing.

So I am always on high alert, ready to jump to attention, to sparkle-shine the floors, vacuum the carpets, de-clutter the kitchen counter that is a magnet for useless papers and kid junk and leash up the dogs for a quick evacuation.

More often than not, however, the call is from my mother, wanting to chitchat about last night’s dinner or the status of our home sale, which she does not support. (But more on that later.) This Tuesday morning, when my Spidey senses tingled, the call was in fact from Jen. A Realtor wanted to bring someone by at 1 p.m., she said. Was I available? Continue reading

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Movin’ Blues


It’s been a while….but it seems like much longer.

When I first began “Here and There,” I envisioned an offbeat chronicle of Jersey Shore happenings, family fun and an occasional trip beyond Cape May County’s borders. But a lot has changed.

For starters, my husband Troy’s moved out. Though not permanently. He took a new job with better prospects at PJM in Audubon, PA., near Valley Forge. His new (temporary) home is a two-room apartment in a Homewood Suites, generously provided by his new employer. It’s not a bad deal — morning breakfast, weekday cocktail hours and (unlike at home) daily maid service. So for him, it’s a major lifestyle upgrade even though he’s tried to convince me he’d rather be here in North Wildwood with me.

We’ve undergone a “lifestyle upgrade” down here at the shore as well. I’ve begun an exciting new life as a stressed-out, often-single mom and housewife. Plus, I am trying to sell our house, which as many of you know, we bought as a fixer-upper about five years ago and renovated ourselves (with the help of family). So the emotional ties are strong here…and it’s a good house with strong bones and a sense of fun. We love it, but we can’t afford to keep it. So day by day I am learning to say good-by. Continue reading

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And Now Back to Our Regularly Scheduled Program….

Troy had off on Monday, and it was a beautiful day, so I convinced him to take me exploring.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve been fascinated by the remnants of the old North Wildwood railroad line that ran through Grassy Sound back in the day.
Supposedly it was called the Mud Hen since the tracks sometimes shifted at high tide, stranding the train and its vacationing passengers until the rails could be set right.

Broken Bridge in Grassy Sound


Still, it was more or less the only way to get across the muck and onto the island until roads were built to accommodate those fancy, new-fangled automobiles. Trains held on for a while though…my dad remembers day trips from Philly that stopped at the High Steps (now the Anglesea Pub). Today, however, there is little proof that they existed at all, just the line of trees in the marsh along North Wildwood Boulevard and two collapsed railroad bridges. Continue reading

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Halloween Ham

Anna as a zombie. Emma as the BP Oil Spill.

Holiday traditions are funny things if you think about it. Imagine what aliens from another planet might think if they honed their high-tech scopes in on a typical American household at Christmas. Dead trees, brought indoors, adorned with twinkling lights that make us curse as they are applied to the boughs. Piles of boxes, painstakingly wrapped to be torn open in an elaborate game of peek-a-boo.

“These Earthlings are a primitive and irrational people, Zork. Perhaps we should go.” Continue reading

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It’s not easy being green.

For a while now, my 14-year-old son Emmett has been talking about dyeing his hair…green. Why green?

Well, apparently, if it’s cool enough for Tré Cool, (You know, of Green Day…duh.) it’s cool enough for my drummer boy.

Every time he’s brought it up, I’ve just kind of blankly smiled and nodded. (“No way!” I thought.)

But last week, Continue reading

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You are here.

“It is not down in any map; true places never are.” Herman Melville, Moby Dick

East Point Light

Lighthouses, by definition, should be easy to find, no? That’s what I thought when my trusty sidekick, Katie, and I decided to chart a course to a few local beacons during the Lighthouse Challenge this past weekend. The annual event draws thousands of lighthouse lovers from all over to New Jersey’s coast to visit the State’s 11 accessible lighthouses–all in one weekend. Continue reading

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Where are the elephants?

We’re going to see the elephants, the elephants, the eleph……

Hey! Where are they?

Not at the Philadelphia Zoo, anymore apparently. My nieces, Riley and Olive found that out the hard way on Monday.

At National Zoo from http://www.life.com/image/56120258

I’ve been out of the “Philly with Kids” loop for a while. We live at the shore, after all, and my kiddos are getting big. But when we lived there, the elephants were always a favorite zoo pit stop, especially at this time of year, when they crushed pumpkins under their huge feet for entertainment. Continue reading

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Lookout!

Did you ever feel like someone’s watching you?

I took this picture from a lookout near the top of the Cape May Lighthouse today.The view out the window looked something like this, but from inside the tiny circle of sunlight took on a more sinister aura. I used Picassa photo editor to tint it red for extra creepiness. Continue reading

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Chubby Checker Slept Here


Wildwood celebrated its heyday this weekend with its Fabulous Fifties weekend. It’s a chance for old-timers to remember the days when Wildwood was a rock and roll hot spot, and big entertainers came here to sharpened their chops.

Today, we love to name drop. Continue reading

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Think Pink – For Breast Cancer Research

The Susan G. Komen 3-Day Walk for the Cure kicked off early this morning in Philadelphia. Over the next three days hundreds of participants will be walking 60 miles to raise money to fight breast cancer. I wish I was walking with them. As time goes by, I am struck by how many people who I know and love are affected by this disease.

Continue reading

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