Scenes from Irene

It\’s been all Irene all the time the last couple of days in New Jersey.  We buckled down for the storm on Saturday.  We prepared our emergency box with flash lights, candles, etc and then got to work juicing some fresh veggies for Bloody Mary\’s.

They tasted better than it looks.  We decided to burn some almost 4-year old energy before being stuck in the house for the rest of the day so we put on our rain coats and headed outside.

We had a light drizzle most of the day on Saturday.  The full force of the storm hit overnight and was pretty much over by the time we woke up Sunday morning.  Here\’s a scene in our back yard.

And the same look down the street.  We were really fortunate to not have any downed trees or large branches in our yard or street.

Quinn needed a nap so we decided to go for a drive.   The hurricane really did some damage.  There were alot of streets closed due to downed power lines and trees in the road.  We saw homes were water was being pumped out of the basement.

At one point we got on the Garden State Parkway to head home and we noticed people driving in REVERSE in the right hand lane and the shoulder.  What?!?!  We quickly realized that the GSP was shut down so we pulled on to the shoulder and started backing up.  Along with hundreds of other cars, we backed up a good mile or so to get to the previous exit to get off the GSP.  It was hysterical and bizarre!  

Once we got off the GSP, we had a really hard time navigating home with all the street closures.  There was a river running through the roads between us and our home.  At one point we came face to face with it.  This is what was standing between us and home.

 We eventually found our way home.   I have a friend that was told she would be without power until September 4.  I have another that has 2 feet of water in her basement and no power.  We feel very fortunate to have escaped the wrath of Irene.

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Down at the Farm

On Tuesday Quinn and I met some of my holistic mom friends at Terhune Orchards for a kids story time and pear picking.  Terhune Orchards is south of us near Princeton and about an hours drive away.  We\’ve been there a handful of times, including  August 2009 and July 2009.

We started with a short story time and then went off to the orchards to pick some pears.  Each kiddo was given a bag and got to pick one asian pear and 5 regular pears.   The trees and the ground were full of pears.

After pear picking, we went off to feed the goats and climb on the tractors.  Terhune has so many activities for the kids that we were there for 3 – 4 hours just having fun.  And the weather couldn\’t have been nicer.   Quinn and his pal Fraser had lots of fun together.  

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Quinn and I had a great day today.  We started off with a trip to Trader Joe\’s where Quinn got some fun stickers from the cashier.   From there we went to Mindawoskin Park where we ran in to Alison, Fraser, and Jasmine.  It was such a beautiful sunny day with a cool breeze.  After a couple of hours of fun with Fraser, we headed home to get ready for a playdate.  A couple of girl friends from Sundance came over to play.  It was so much fun to see them playing together.  The three kids played quietly in the upstairs playroom while the ladies and I got caught up on all our summer happenings.   Then it was dinner and time to make some rollerskates.  Quinn made these himself.

Before falling asleep, Quinn and I talked about our wonderful day and how we needed a really good night\’s sleep so that we can make the most of our day tomorrow.  We are squeezing all the little juicy bits out of summer before it\’s gone.

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Mom Quinn Pam

Mom and Pam drove up to NJ for a quick visit.  We only had a couple of days so we hit some local parks and ice cream shops!  Quinn was so excited to see his Grams and Aunt Pammie and had such a good time playing with them.    And I just love this moment captured.

Grams and Aunt Pam, we miss you already!

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Portland Food Carts

Don and I were really looking forward to visiting Portland and their Food Carts.  I first heard about them when my mom got a card from the husband of a dearly departed friend that mentioned he sold reuben\’s at his daughter\’s food cart in Portland.  Very interesting.   I knew that Portland was very veggie friendly so the food carts were very promising.

We did a little research and downloaded a Portland food cart app to our iphones.  Our first morning we routed our path to hit all the major points of interest, including as many food carts as our stomachs could handle.  The food carts are generally set up in \”pods\” in parking lots so when you find one cart, you will find anywhere from 5 – 25 carts.    Each cart has it\’s own theme with a pretty small menu.  Not surprising considering the size of the carts.   Almost all of the carts had some sort of veggie or vegan option.

Here\’s our first set of carts set up by Portland State University.   We were there early-ish so only a handful were open.  You can see that each one has a different feel to it.

I knew that mom\’s friend\’s husband sold reubens and with a little research I was able to figure out which cart was his.  Pastrami on Rye.  There were a handful of reuben carts in the city but when one reviewer mentioned \”the old gentleman that reminded me of my grandpa\” I knew I had found the right one.  
Unfortunately they were closed when we arrived.  
After we ate breakfast I noticed that they were starting to open up so we stopped by for a visit and had a nice chat with Bill.  I loved that they had a veggie reuben but unfortunately we had just eaten and it was time to move on.  

We hit a couple more food carts before the day was through.  A great way to see and taste Portland.

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A Peak at Last Week

We are home from our week in Oregon for Don\’s family reunion.  It was a wonderful week in so many ways and we had a really great time.  I need to sort through my loads of pictures but thought I would post a small handful of my favorites to get started.  I was really in love with the reflections, textures, and silhouettes at the beach so I took lots and lots of beach pictures.  And of course Quinn is always happy with his hands in the sand.

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It\’s Cool at the Beach

It\’s so peaceful and cool on the Oregon Coast. I took a walk this morning and watched the fog roll off the beach.

A look in the other direction.

Quinn and I went out a little later while Don was golfing with the guys.

How I love the reflections.

And the textures. I\’m in mamarazzi heaven 😉

We are having loads of fun with the White/Toll gang with 2 more days still to go.

{{Posted on the road using my mini pc}}