Lobster, oysters, and 13 years

My husband and I got married on Sept. 4, 2004. Since the 13th anniversary isn't exactly a milestone one, we didn't plan anything huge, but we did manage to convince G (nanny) to stay overnight with our kids on Sunday night. We took off in the afternoon for Cape May, NJ, for a 24-hour adults-only trip.

Not all went perfectly. For instance, I thought I had booked a hotel room with an ocean view. I opened the window and saw no such thing. So I called the front desk to ask about this. They said they would call me right back. In the mean time, I walked out on the (shared with 4 other rooms) balcony and saw that you could see a small sliver of the ocean peaking out between the roof of the hotel pool and the other rooms. So maybe technically it was an ocean view room, but not exactly. Anyway, the front desk never called me back so we eventually left and figured we'd just spend a lot of time looking at the ocean in other places.

We went for a solid hour-long walk on the beach, which is not something the kids would ever consent to do. Then we went to the Lobster House for dinner. It's one of our favorite places. We sit outside and look at the boats and eat take-out seafood. The place was mobbed, so we were waiting 20 minutes to give our order, and then another 20 minutes for the food, but because we didn't have kids with us the wait was fine. We drank our beers and ordered oysters from the raw bar. And then we enjoyed our lobster, scallops, and shrimp.

After we got back to the hotel, I wound up walking into town by myself to get ice cream. Then there was this adults-only trip treat: sleeping in. Granted, sleeping in means 7:45 a.m. these days, but I'll take it! We went for a run together on the board walk Monday morning, which is another thing we never do anymore (because we generally trade off kid coverage while we run solo). We had breakfast at our hotel, then went walking in the Nature Conservancy preserve, and into the Cape May State Park.

It was really beautiful. The swamp rose-mallows were in full bloom, and the birds -- sand pipers, hawks, seagulls -- swirled overhead. The grand bird migrations will come in another month or so (we might go back!) but it was still good bird watching now. Many trees were covered with this incredibly fragrant vine. I'm posting a photo if anyone knows the name of it. I am not sure if it is supposed to be there or not, but it gave the place a distinctive scent. We hiked for 90 minutes. Then we drove to Cape May Point to see the tip of the Jersey peninsula. Then it was back to the Lobster House for yet another round of broiled lobster, scallops, and shrimp (no beer this time).

We drove home, making it a few minutes before 3. G had asked me to text when we were close. When I opened the door, the kids leaped out with a sign saying Happy Anniversary. And they'd made these cupcakes! Wow! So incredibly sweet.

Photos: Take-out broiled lobster dinner, ocean view (not from our hotel), the fragrant vine, cupcakes for the 13th anniversary

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14 Responses to Lobster, oysters, and 13 years


  1. ARC says:

    Happy Anniversary! Love that they made you cupcakes.

  2. Happy 13th! I love the cupcakes – you have a gem of a babysitter

  3. beth says:

    I got married 2 weeks before you. Our anniversary this year was eclipse day. Which we spent at work doing the same old, same old. Your celebration was a much better way to mark 13 years!

    • @beth – happy anniversary to you too! And hey, the sky put on quite a show for it!

  4. omdg says:

    Our 11th is coming up this year. Last year we went to Townsend for dinner in South Philly and had the tasting menu with wine pairings, which… I think you would like it! 11 is not as important as 10… but, I think we should do something fun anyway. Will probably go out to a nice restaurant again since, you know, time constraints. I do love the Lobster House though, even with a small child in tow.

    • @omdg- congrats on 11! And thanks for the restaurant recommendation – that sounds totally like my kind of place.

  5. angela says:

    Congrats on your anniversary! what a sweet way to celebrate and be celebrated

    : )

    i was wondering if the vine you saw was honeysuckle… but I googled to see if I could find pictures of it similar to your picture, and Clematis Paniculata popped up and it looks similar to your picture here
    https://www.greatgardenplants.com/product/clematis-paniculata-sweet-autumn-clematis/climbing-vines?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIwfSyqYb91QIVSEwNCh192g2EEAQYBCABEgIwtPD_BwE

    • @Angela – I think you are right, that autumn clematis sounds exactly like what I saw. And very vanilla scented!

      • angela says:

        Very cool!

  6. Happy anniversary! We had our 20th this month, and since we’re now pretty far into the parenthood gig, we can just leave our kids overnight without arranging for care.

    (Such an upside of teenagers! My kids are (almost) 18, 16, 13, and 11.)

    We haven’t left them for multiple nights, but we’ve done the one night thing a few times now.

    Jealous of all the seafood you ate!

    • @Kristen – an upside of responsible teenagers! I’m hoping mine will be like that. We shall see!

  7. Cathy says:

    Happy anniversary! We got married on exactly the same date and have nothing planned at all to celebrate it this year – my husband was 40 just over a week ago which we hosted a party for and I think that’s used up all my celebration energy for now. Maybe we’ll get some time together later in the autumn…

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