When Hurricane Sandy ravaged the northeast, specifically our hometown of NYC and our beloved vacation spot, the Jersey Shore, we made it a point to say, “We’re definitely going ‘down the shore’ next year for our summer vacation.”
And this past March, I booked our house down in Lavallette, New Jersey, in the same community that we have rented from the past six years. I’m a Jersey Girl: I went down the shore with my girlfriends when we were in high school; we did the Seaside thing post-prom, and when our oldest daughter was about 3 years old, we started coming back down the shore for our yearly family vacation.
When I booked in March, I thought that there would be a lack of homes, but there were plenty available, eventhough there were a ton that were affected by Hurricane Sandy. I joined the Facebook page of the community where we rent and watched daily how Lavallette was pulling itself back together: the local mini-golf was gearing up for opening day, the amazing bakery with the delicious bread, cookies and pastries, and the donut shop where we buy our morning donuts that completely off-set the calories I burned up during my morning run (when I do go out to run, that is). As of now, per the community’s Facebook page, 52 local shops and restaurants have opened for business since Hurricane Sandy!
I’ve partnered with General Motors for our trip down the shore. GM was gracious to loan our family an Acadian Denali for our week-long trip. I’ll be sharing with you our favorite places to go, eat, shop and play at the Jersey Shore as well as the recovery efforts that have taken place since Hurricane Sandy. If you want to follow along with our trip, follow the hashtag: #TTMattheShore
I dug up some amazing pictures from our trips to Lavallette from the past several years. I love that our girls look forward to our yearly trip: from hanging out at the beach all day; to walking over to the bakery in the morning for some chocolate covered donuts; the daily trip to the donut place for cinnamon-sugar donuts; going to the seafood place to look at all the fish, shrimp and scallops; enjoying a sub for lunch; or heading over to the beach shop for a round of hermit crab racing, we’re always making memories. (We always end up buying a hermit crab just to have it race — we even had a 3rd place win one year, out of over a 100 hermit crab entries!)
Also, every year when we’re at the shore, we get our family portraits taken by my old friend Darwisa and her husband, Matt of S/K Photography from Ocean City, New Jersey. Living down at the beach gives them an advantage of knowing when to take pictures for the best light, and as parents themselves, they know how to work with the girls for the best pictures. You can bet that we’ll be getting our pictures taken next week by Matt and Darwisa!
We are too excited for our trip down the Jersey Shore. Have you been down there lately since Hurricane Sandy? I’d love to know what you and your family did while down there!