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Mazel Tov, Emma!

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What a wonderful weekend we had! One of my dear childhood friends’ daughter was having her bat mitzvah. It made me feel very emotional to think that I had been to Perri’s bat mitzvah and now here we were at her daughter’s. Emma did an amazing job with her Torah portion and all of the other parts. Probably way more than I observed when I was 13 and her mother’s, I was much more aware this time of what a momentous occasion this was and how hard Emma worked to get there. So well done, Emma! We are so happy for you and so thrilled we could share this special moment and be there.
IMG_8364Now, because we turn every road trip into an adventure and have ridiculously good spontaneous luck, wait until you hear about the full weekend. The plan was simply to drive to Syracuse Friday afternoon, have dinner up there. next day attend the bat mitzvah, find a couple geocaches, then have dinner with her family, and Sunday morning drive back home. We changed a lot of that. We did leave Friday afternoon, but due to a detour and traffic were only just in the Scranton, PA area at 5:30 when we stopped for a cold drink, gas, and may-as-well-while-we’re-stopped-geocache. Paul went to the University of Scranton, so this was a familiar area to him. We decided to just stay and have dinner there and went to Quaker Steak n’ Lube, a hilariously race themed wings type of place. I took a picture of the funny cutout out front,
posted it to FB, and minutes later one of Paul’s college friends wrote to ask if we were there, and then came to meet us! I’d never met her before and Paul hadn’t seen her in almost 15 years. So the spontaneous reunion was quite wonderful.  Finally back on the road when Tabby had to use the bathroom at 9:30. Ugh-next rest stop 15 miles. But wait! What is that shining light in the night off the highway? A TIM HORTON’S! We adore Tim Horton’s, but it’s a Canadian (or northern U.S.) treat that is rare for us. So then it was hot chocolates and donuts all around and picking up a new container of Tim’s ho-cho to stock in our pantry.
We finally arrived at the hotel after a very exciting journey. The hotel was marvelous!

Bike rack

In the morning we walked to the temple, attended the service, and the following party. It was a lovely lunch and celebration. The kids were enamored of the photo booth. Oh who am I kidding? We were too! All the rage now, but not around yet when we got married.

Photo Booth
After that we had a few afternoon hours open to us and Paul had already found out that a Polish festival was going on downtown, so off we went!
@the Polish Festival
It was pretty small,but we very much enjoyed the dancers and music and checking out the vendors (no Polish food for us as we’d just come from a big lunch party, though we did enjoy a beer.) Special souvenirs were purchased, of course, as we do love that sort of thing.
Dancers at the Polish Festival

Dancers at the Polish Festival

We had taken a shuttle there, but when we were ready to leave it was on break, so we started to walk back. The kids were super mopey and we basically just stopped at this big public art fountain next to a museum and hung out there with all the skaters for a while (until the shuttle came back for us.)
Tabby at a fountain
Then it was off to a nice dinner with Perri’s family, where it was wonderful to just catch up and relax together. Our morning plan was to just join them for bagels and depart but… We decided to grab a couple geocaches in a nearby park first. And it turned out the park was lovely and had a rose garden!! We did find two caches, but also really enjoyed the roses.
Tunnel of roses


in the rose garden

Then a lovely final visit and we were on the road again, this time with plans to meet our friends in Scranton for lunch at this crazy restaurant called Cooper’s Seafood House. There’s tons of crazy vintage memorabilia (I love all the board games), theme areas, a weird blend of Scranton history/vintage toys & television/musical themes (Elvis and Beatles bathrooms)/and nautical (sharks and dioramas.)

Zoltar Tells All
by the bathroom
Here are the kids playing Centipede:
After that Paul and Matt wanted to walk around the campus of the University. It was beautiful and I kept remarking that it was ten times nicer than my college, to which they said it is 10 times nicer than when they went there!


University of Scranton alumni and maybe future classes

Of course we had to find a geocache there
Finding a geocache at the U of S
It was a wonderful afternoon and I’m so glad we were able to make this be a full weekend of fun and friends. And we managed to find 8 geocaches over the course of it!

About Sarah

I'm a librarian living with my lovely family in a gorgeous spot of New Jersey, where we raise chickens and love the outdoors. I try to find enough time to indulge all my hobbies-cooking, photography, gardening, sewing, and I write about it all on my book blog & personal blog.

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