Comes way too soon!
We are on our way home from our little girls getaway and so sad to be leaving the palms, warm weather and wonderful people! However it is also a great feeling to be HOME ❤ There is NO place like it 🙂
On Friday, we took advantage of the PERFECT weather and set out on the dolphin and shrimping cruise from calabash NC . Did I mention the weather was perfect? 🙂
We set out at 1:30 pm. Since we had such a large group, we had a bit of a discount, our cruise tickets cost us $19 each. The ride was calm and relaxing. I LOVE BEING ON THE OCEAN. You could bring your own cooler (small) if you would like, also drinks and snacks (crackers, chips, beer, soda, etc)were able in the cabin. Many people sported their koozies and drinks in hand and had a blast. I drank my coconut water and was able to see some dolphins super close! They are beautiful! It was the closest I have ever seen them. Mom even saw a mother and her baby ❤
The captain talked about and showed us all the marine life that inhabits the oceans of NC and SC. Most are the same as our fish in NJ. Blowfish, starfish, sand sharks, rays… We also had a sand dollar and some conch.
Later the specimens were auctioned off and jarred with water and alcohol….I was tempted to bring something home to show my kiddos BUT opted out of it recalling my infamous squid incident last year…..(my students were so terrified of the squid they were hiding under desks) ….so I opted OUT of squishing a sea creature into a mason jar…
The crew was fabulous. Kind and informative. I learned that the two most common sharks in the NC and SC waters are the bull shark and tiger shark. Yikes!
Also found out about the strict and almost unrealistic RULES and specifications between SC and NC fishing laws. Apparently they are very tough and will fine you and will even extradite you back from NJ to go to court! Be careful(((dad)))). Ha!
It was really a beautiful, peaceful and relaxing few hours on the ocean
After our day at sea, we were ready to get our sea legs back, SO we drove over to World Market to check it out! It was like a toned down, less expensive Pier One. I loved the gourmet foods section, you could pretty much find all the neat products from Germany, Asia, Poland, etc…They had some great jewelry. My mom surprised me with a pair I loved as well as a pair for herself!
I also picked up this table runner …
some mineral water
and this BBQ spice packet
Some other things I had my eye on but did not get….
How cute for a picnic or outdoor bbq?
After a day on the water AND in the stores, we decided to freshen up a bit then head over to The Shack before it closed at 8 pm. We LOVE the Shack for breakfast, so we figured we would give dinner a shot!
The place was mobbed BUT we did not have to wait, we also we seated at our usual seat 🙂
We started out with hushpuppies. To me they did not look appealing, mom tried them and said they were good, BUT I think she was just hungry!
Next I had a salad (It was SUPER fresh and had some incredible cucumbers!) BUT it was stacked so high in a bowl I had a hard time eating it. It was awkward!
Mama C had the New England Clam Chowder (White). She said it was really delicious and the clams were perfectly cooked. She assured me I would enjoy them, I am not so sure. I feel like clams are……boogers?! Yuck
For our meals we were BOTH feeling seafood, SOMEHOW and SOMEWAY even after a day on the boat with smelly sea creatures as well as a bout of sea sickness….
I had the Flounder and Sweet potato. My Flounder was delicious , just how I like it, but very plain. Nothing to “write home about”. It could have used some lemon or something, it was a bit bland, even for my liking. The sweet potato was perfectly cooked, YUM YUM
Mama C had the Flounder and Shrimp combo ALSO with a sweet potato. She agreed with me about the Flounder and said her shrimp were small and nothing special.
We both ended with coffee. This was probably their best feature. The Shacks coffee is fabulous!! Morning, noon OR night 🙂
So although our dinner was enjoyable, it was nothing special, nor worth trying and ordering again HOWEVER, the Shack will remain forever in my heart as the BEST place for breakfast (especially those paper thin omelettes!)
Not so beautiful was our drive HOME 😦
Ugh, 95 and the traffic! From Virginia all the way to Baltimore, we were pretty much in stop and go traffic. I was pretty sure I was going to scream quite a few times, I am actually proud of myself for remaining mostly calm, my mom was even encouraging me to SCREAM….thanks! 🙂
Did you know that you can PAY EXTRA now and take advantage of 95’s express lanes?! Read about it here……unreal!
Fast Facts about Using the Express Lanes
- The Express Lanes operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Drivers can use the lanes anytime and tolling is always in effect
- All drivers need an E-ZPass and carpoolers need an E-ZPass Flex
- With three or more people and an E-ZPass Flex, HOV-3 travel toll-free 24 hours a day, seven days a week
- The 95 Express Lanes end and the HOV lanes begin on I-395 just north of Edsall Road. The rules on the I-395 HOV lanes will not change. Read more about this transition area
- You will see pricing and regulatory signage in advance of all Express Lanes entrances. These signs guide you to the lanes, explain the rules of the road and provide you with information on current toll pricing. Read more about Express Lanes signage
- The Express Lanes use dynamic pricing to keep you moving. Read more about Express Lanes pricing
- The 95 Express Lanes are reversible. The entry and exit points open and close depending on which direction traffic is flowing
Driving Reversible Lanes
The 95 Express Lanes are reversible. Gate transition time on the I-395 HOV and 95 Express Lanes facilities will temporarily increase during the nighttime hours due to remaining construction activity. Ultimately, the gate transition period will return to standard times.
Please note the schedule is approximate and will vary based on real-time traffic conditions. Some entry points close or open before others. Here’s what you need to know:
- No matter when you travel, remember to pay close attention to on-road signage and gates. If an access point is open to traffic, you’re able to enter the Express Lanes
- Never attempt to enter or exit the Express Lanes via an access point that is closed or is in the process of closing
|CLOSED**||OPEN Southbound||OPEN Northbound|
|Midnight to 2:30 a.m.||Midnight to 2 p.m.||Midnight to midnight|
|2:30 a.m. to 11 a.m.||2 p.m. to 4 p.m.|
|11 a.m. to 1 p.m.||4 p.m. to midnight|
|1 p.m. to midnight||*Subject to change
**Except on Monday
Holiday Exceptions: On Christmas, New Year’s Day and Thanksgiving the 95 Express Lanes will head southbound. On the Fourth of July, the Lanes will head northbound until 7 p.m.