Pages

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

A 94th in NJ

We took our first extended road ๐Ÿš— trip last week. We've been on road trips the past several months, but all of these have been within New England. This trip was to our native NJ for a long overdue (18 months) visit with family and friends.

But, the main purpose besides visits, was to celebrate a very special  94th birthday of our friend, Margaret. She and her late husband, Edward, were the nicest neighbors who lived across the street from my parent's and my childhood home. Margaret still lives there, alone now since Edward passed. She's quite self-sufficient and even still driving locally. A niece living nearby often takes her out as well. We so admire and love this remarkable lady, and were thankful and happy to have been able to spend time with and celebrate with her.
Our NJ friend, Margaret, was 94 years young last week
The last time we visited NJ and visited with her was December 2019, and despite the months passing, we've kept in contact through weekly phone chats and snail-mail. Now, that w
e've all been vaccinated, it was wonderful to give hugs. We went to dinner with my brother (Tony) and sister-in-law (Anita). We pre-celebrated Anita's July birthday as we won't be back in NJ then.

This extended trip took 5 days including the 6-hour travel time from NH to NJ and vice versa. We were happy to see family and friends. It entailed a bit of drive time as none of them live near one another, and we visited with several couples as time allowed. And, there were other celebrations as well. My oldest childhood friend and husband (Phyllis and Jack) told us their 51st wedding anniversary was the day we went out for breakfast together ๐Ÿฅ‚.
Great niece Autumn Rose at 20 months
Yes, the youngest family members are growing up, as shown in these photos of our great niece, Autumn Rose, who is nearly 20 months old. She and her parents were at my brother's home  when we visited over the weekend.
Autumn Rose with mom Julie and "Pop-Pop" Tony
It was game time with mom Julie and my brother, Tony, also known as "pop-pop." 
Great niece Savannah Marie, 20 months & great nephew Nicholas James, 1 month
This is her cousin, our other great niece, Savannah Marie with baby brother and great nephew Nicholas James. These youngsters live in FL and the updated photos were sent by their mom (niece Jamie) during our visit. The last time we saw both these great nieces they were 3 months old. One day, we hope to see them together and also meet Nicholas.
Granddaughter Lilliana, 4-1/2, and parents Paulo & Coleen
While we didn't visit her in person, we did get new photos of youngest granddaughter Lilliana and her parents (Paulo and Coleen). They live in PA and we'll see them in mid-July when we all will gather in RI. Another family get together is happening and we'll also visit the older grands (Bobby and Ellie) and mom (Shannon). This trip will involve a bit of home remodeling, so it's a family work trip as well.
Grenville at White Castle, a favorite NJ fast food eatery
For Grenville, no NJ trip would be complete without a stop at White Castle, his favorite fast food eatery. Unfortunately, there are none in New England, so he had a fix at one near our South Plainfield, NJ hotel. Maybe that's why we always stays at that Hampton Inn ๐Ÿ˜‹

White Castle celebrates its 100 birthday this year. The family-owned business (no franchises) was founded in 1921 by Walt Anderson and Billy Ingram in Wichita, KS. White Castle still sells its steamed beef patty with onions and a pickle, cheeseburgers also available. These small, square hamburgers are so easy to eat, that they were dubbed Sliders and sold by the sack. In 1921, White Castle was the first fast food hamburger establishment. By 1927, co-founder Ingram came up with the idea of carry-out and inaugurated the now familiar ad of Selling ‘em by the sack, which is how they are still sold today. Throughout the company's existence, the Ingram family's decision not to franchise or take on debt has kept this chain relatively small compared to similar restaurants.

The Polar Cub, Whitehouse, NJ, no road trip is complete without ice cream
Of course, for us no road trip would be complete without one of our favorites๐Ÿฆand not just at any roadside stand. Its official beginnings are unknown, however, the Polar Cub in Whitehouse, NJ, has been a very popular highway creamery since the 1950s. While, the pandemic shuttered the stand last year, it reopened for the 2021 season in mid-May, luckily just before our visit. 
Yes, we were happy to be in the area after a late breakfast with friends. This was a lunch stop. Doesn't everyone believe in dessert first or last?

Thanks for your comments on last week's post about The Dumb Guy Museum in Portsmouth, NH. We agree it was the most unique museum we've visited on our travels to date. While, it might be hard to beat this find on future road trips, we'll definitely keep looking ๐Ÿ‘€.

32 comments:

David M. Gascoigne, said...

Great to be free to travel again and visit with family. Margaret looks like a salt-of-the-earth kind of lady. Please pass on the best regards of an unknown Canadian admirer.

Kathy said...

So happy to have you in my neck of the woods. Can you believe I have never been to a White Castle? I have heard wonderful and awful things about them. Someday I have to go see for myself. Have a safe trip and enjoy seeing (and hugging) all those relatives.

Linda G. said...

I love the last picture of the two of you with your ice cream. You both look so happy. I am glad you were able to travel to see family and friends.

Marcia said...

What a great reconnection trip you had.

As to ice cream, we had maple creamees for lunch one day. After all it's wholesome milk, right?

mamasmercantile said...

I am thrilled for you that you are able to travel and get together with family and friends. Such wonderful celebrations, a great trip for you.

Anvilcloud said...

There was a White Castle across the river in Port Huron, MI when we lived in Sarnia. I think we ate there once. Back in the 70s, we'd cross the border for BK Whoppers. They used to be good then. We'd also drop in at London Dairy where this idiot enjoyed the Idiots Delight dish. We eventually go our own BK in Sarnia, but it wasn't quite the same by then. But we never got a rival for London Dairy, which did not delight this idiot. It was so easy to cross the border in those days, and if we purchased a book of tickets, the crossing only cost 15 cents.

MadSnapper said...

i love white castle but have only had the frozen ones they sell in the grocery store. they are much like Krystals which are sold in the south. i would love to have one fresh. you kramed a lot of family/frined visiting into a few days. your family is growing UP, can't belineve Liliana is so big.

Edna B said...

Whenever hubby and I would travel to NJ to visit friends, we always stopped at White Castle. The little ones are beautiful, and they are growing so fast! I'm glad you have another wonderful family gathering coming up. Enjoy your day, hugs, Edna B.

Bijoux said...

That’s great that you caught up with so many family members and friends. Margaret is a very young looking 94 year old! I’m also happy to see the ice cream. Yum!

David said...

Beatrice, Isn't it great to be able to get back together in person with family and friends!! We're in the same mode ourselves and it's been great seeing people we missed for the last year. Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

Jon said...

I'm so glad that you were able to visit New Jersey again and finally see your lovely relatives and friends. 94-year-old Margaret is truly an inspiration. I had an uncle in New Jersey who lived to be 96 and he did everything entirely on his own until the day he died.

My parents loved White Castle hamburgers and had them often. It's nice to know W.C. is still in existence.

robin andrea said...

Sounds like such a lovely journey, filled with family and friends and so much love. It is wonderful that you could visit a friend that you've known for so very long. Sweet in every way. Love the photos!

My name is Erika. said...

So many fabulous faces and stories in this post Dorothy. I'm glad you got to see these people. It was tough with covid. And as for the food, I am really curious about White Castle burgers. I have heard of them but never had them. And that is sure one huge ice cream. It's so hot today I had one for lunch myself, but not even close to that size. Glad you were able to take such a good trip. If you're not back in NH, safe travels. hugs-Erika

jp@A Green Ridge said...

Oh my goodness Dorothy, Autumn Rose is simply PERFECT! She is the epitome of cuteness and adorableness rolled tucked under those little curls of hers. It was so nice to you to celebrate with your former neighbor and family. The ice cream and the White Castle burger look yummy!!...jp

Coastal Ripples said...

How lovely to see everyone at last. Your 94 year old friend looks amazing and looks like she will easily make 100! I bet you feel that life is finally getting back to normal. B x

L. D. said...

That was a successful road trip for sure. You got to visit so many different people. Friends and family was so great for you to see. Ice Cream is a great reward too.

bill burke said...

What a fun trip to get reconnected with family. The kids are so adorable and Margaret looks fantastic for 94. I hope she had a wonderful birthday. I bet you two had no problem enjoying the huge ice cream cone. :)
The ice cream place in my photo today just opened so we haven't tried it yet but it seems to be an instant hit. Have a great day!

acorn hollow said...

How wonderful you got to see family and friends! and some pretty cute kids. I have never eaten at a white castle. But I do like ice cream.
Cathy

William Kendall said...

Good to be able to get together with friends and family.

Bindu said...

What a wonderful thing to see friends and family after a long time!
Nice to see all those happy faces!

Rita said...

Fantastic to see your dear friend and all your family you could see--even if it was just current pictures for some that are still far away. Looks like a wonderful time! And then add ice cream and White Castles--LOL! Fitting end to a great trip. :)

Margaret D said...

How good you can travel within.
Lovely lady she has such a sweet face, the children are lovely too.
Take care.

John "By Stargoose And Hanglands" said...

Great to be able to all get back together again after such a time. Some fine-looking people of all generations!

DeniseinVA said...

Margaret is a lovely lady and how kind of you two to take her out. It’s lovely that you have these nice memories of Margaret and her husband as friends and neighbors. Your granddaughters are very cute and I enjoyed all your photos Very special get-together with family and friends, and looks like a great trip in many ways.

DUTA said...

94? Well done. May the lady happily get to 124 (the oldest female person nowadays)!
The kids in your family look adorable, and are a real joy to all!

TARYTERRE said...

What a heartwarming visit. You got to cover all the bases with everybody. So glad you were able to make the trek. Wonderful memories were made after being apart for so long.

Emma Springfield said...

What a nice trip. Those kids are getting so big! I know you said that but my goodness... they really are. I knew you'd stop for ice cream. Looks so good.

nick said...

It must have been great to have a proper get-together after so many months of restrictions. Quite a road trip!

Christina said...

I am so happy for you, being able to visit with family and friends. It sounds truly wonderful.

baili said...

this is amazing sharing dear friend :)))

i enjoyed it from the bottom of my heart ,how great to be able to visit your family and friends after such long time ,thank goodness this is possible now !

you family babies are growing fast ,look at Autumn Rose i could not believe she is almost two now wow !

meeting old neighboring lady who lived with your parents sounds emotional and touching !

how nice you could go and eat in you favorite white palace :)
i loved the photo of both of you ,it is always so nice to see you both full of life and active ,i love such energy !
more health ,peace and joy to both of you and loved ones!

LL Cool Joe said...

Margaret looks amazing for 94! She has a very knowing smile, but I suppose at that age you probably do have life pretty sussed!

Rob K said...


I love these photos--what beautiful children! And God bless your neighbor Margaret!

There used to be a White Castle in my neighborhood of Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, which was featured in "Saturday Night Fever" with John Travolta.