The Sunday Geekery goes to Carlo’s Bakery!

The Sunday Geekery goes to Carlo’s Bakery!

Today marks the last day of summer vacation. Tomorrow we return to school, regular schedules, and a bit more normal! Summer vacation had been so challenging this year shuffling around from this camp to that camp with a few out of town commitments just to make it more complicated. Seemed like to me, we needed a little time away just for the sake of being away. My kid has been completely checked in to all things Cake Boss and has said, “I want to go to NJ” so many times I could hardly stand it anymore. So – we went to Carlo’s Bakery in Hoboken, NJ!


I love these kind of trips. We pick something, usually something small, and travel around it. We’ve done it this way for events in Chicago, Memphis, Atlanta, and NYC. Every single time we end up discovering a city or place we would have never had reason to step foot in otherwise. For this trip, it was Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. Baltimore was a good place for us to stop between NC and NJ. Since the trip fell over the 4th of July, it seemed like a good time to be at the Inner Harbor for fireworks!

We left on Thursday, and it was rough y’all. We started to bring Hurricane Aurthur with us and it rained all the way from the VA border to Baltimore. Add horrendous traffic through DC, crazy road changes, a tractor trailer fire, and all sorts of other road non-sense and our drive went from 5 hours to nearly 8! We tried to meet LeeAnna from Not Afriad of Color and her husband for dinner. Sadly, the road weary caught up with my kid and just about when the table was ready, her body gave out. I swear, it happened so fast I didn’t believe her for a bit! To add insult to injury, we pulled into a Subway on the way back to the hotel – they were out of bread!

There are upsides, I did get to see some of LeeAnna’s work and it is, as expected, lovely. She’s quite a talented and focused artist. If you don’t know her work, you should swing by her blog and check her out! We has a pretty good attitude about the whole Griswald road experience and enjoyed it, even if it was crazy. We woke Friday morning renewed with a kid that was feeling good and headed to the Inner Harbor.


The weather was amazing. No more rain, perfect temperatures, and general awesome. As a matter of fact, other than a few minor traffic snags and STUPID high tolls, the rest of the trip was full of most excellent perfect timings. We went to the National Aquarium where I could finally see a Mantis Shrimp. The little bugger was hiding, but I could see a bit of him back there.


We ate lunch at one of our favorite chains that no longer exists here. (I know – crazy, I dont eat seafood. A bit challenging at the Inner Harbor!)

BaltimoreVaca002I just can’t tell you how much I enjoyed milling around the Inner Harbor when the July 4th celebrations started. There was SO many people to watch with enough room to move around that I never had crowd anxiety. Check out this fella – he even had stars in his beard!


Behind him – The Naval Academy rock back in their Navy whites. Yep, doesn’t get much more Americana than that! Then – the best part – I could watch the fireworks without anxiety because of the most excellent hotel view.

BaltimoreVaca003Saturday we only had one mission – to get to Hoboken. If you don’t know, Hoboken is literally one turn from entering NYC  of I-78. Literally – miss the turn, welcome to the Holland Tunnel. We had fun eyeballing the Statue of Liberty and some of the NYC buildings from the road, but really didn’t want to end up trying to drive our way outta there! We made the turn, finally found a parking place and headed to the bakery.


I had done my internet homework and knew we’d be standing in the Carlo’s Bakery line for at least two hours. As I mentioned – we were very lucky. The weather was excellent, we had a nice shady spot to stand, and caught the line when it was around 1.5 hours.


I really didn’t know what to expect in the bakery itself, but was pleasantly surprised. They have kept it very authentic feeling. They were all super friendly, welcoming, and patient. The lady that helped seemed happy to do it, took the time to make sure we left with exactly what we wanted, and smiled the whole time.


Even better – The baked good were all tasty! I’m not sure why I thought they wouldn’t be, maybe just my general mistrust of all things mainstream, but I was wrong. We tried Lobster tails, Chocolate Chip Cookies, Crumb Cake and Chocolate Butter Cream Yellow Cake.


Now that’s a bag! We went back to Baltimore for dinner and a nice walk. We intended to go to the American Visionary Art Museum before heading home, but decided that it was just time to go home. Good thing we did right? Gives me tell you about it!

I had my eyes out of textures and patterns too. My favorite of the bunch? This star pattern on the Constellation’s medallion.


So it’s a wrap. I’m quite looking forward to a bit of normal. I miss you guys – can’t wait to start to catch up and see what you all are up to. I’ve been instagram stalking too – if you want to add me @theboredzombie, I’ll surely add you back. You may not see much from me, but I’ll see you. 🙂

Here’s the parting shot – I took a picture of my dinner, I might as well have the stupid foot shot too, right?




  1. That sounds like quite an adventure! I’m glad the bakery was worth the wait. Your daughter looks very happy with her bag. School holidays haven’t started yet 🙂

    • It was fun! I’ve lived in this area most of my life and I was even surprised at just how many big cities we were in or near in such a short time. It seems like they should be worlds apart, but really it is just a short trip from one to the next.

  2. You guys know how to have fun!! Those cakes look awesome. i hope they were worth the wait. I can just see you making that star into a quilt. That man with the flag beard is a classic!.

    • We did have fun and yes, the cake was pretty great! It was so simple, just cake and frosting. It was a bit refreshing, sometimes simple is the bomb right? 🙂

  3. You need a vacation after that vacation! I really want to take a vacation and then I remember what vacationing is like with out littles. I may just stay home for the next 5 years haha!

    • ha! You’re not kidding! Other than the traffic and sick kid going up, it really wasn’t too bad. It looks like a lot, but never bit off more than we could chew for the day and never had to be in a hurry. I think we caught lots of unexpected breaks too, which is awesome!

      Maybe something simple with the babes? Doesn’t take much for them to think they have gone on the trip of a lifetime. 🙂

  4. That sounds like a lovely trip! We saw a few fireworks from our front porch, but for the most part they weren’t high enough for us to see. I never realized that the bakery from Cake Boss was in Hoboken. I have a cousin that lives there! I’m glad you enjoyed your trip. Good luck getting back on a regular schedule!

    • Thanks Kristy! It’s already better and we’re just settling back into routine. I’d never been to Hoboken before. It looked like a charming city with lots of fun places to sit and enjoy it. I, of course, imagine it sucks eggs when it gets cold. Ha!

      • I actually grew up in Jersey (though about as far west in Jersey as you can get). Now I live in MN. If I learned anything while I’ve been here (especially this past winter), it’s that Jersey ain’t got nothin’ on cold! 😉

  5. That was a fun read!! So glad to hear you had a great time! You are not alone, I am always doubtful about mainstream things too. Good thing that the baked goods were tasty after that long of a wait. Oh and watching fireworks from the hotel – priceless!!


    • haha! I’ve never claimed to be “right”. I just try to deal with my broken in any way I can. I seriously might have had an actual medical issue if I had to stand as close to the fire as the people on the harbor were. Too loud, too fire-y! 🙂

  6. Glad you had a wonderful time 🙂 hope you get some well deserved rest!

    • It’s kind of crazy right? Going back to work and school is relaxing! We just thrive with more regular schedules and expectations. Already – day 2 – it is much better. Of course, I also find myself wishing for the weekend! hahaha!

  7. That was fun!! I’m sorry your daughter felt so sick and our time was shortened. Next time… The weather was perfect for y’all, and I wanted to call but figured you were having fun. We saw fireworks from our friend’s party, then from the harbor on our way home that night, so we were kinda there with you! Jealous about the pastries!
    LeeAnna Paylor

    • If I had known we were going to skip the museum Sunday, I would have brought you one! 🙂

  8. Hello Susan,
    I am on a countdown to summer break… Just 5 more days of work! After that we are off for 6 weeks and than the whole school thing starts over!
    I loved reading about your trip. We can see the Carlo’s Bakery show too on TLC. It always airs around dinnertime… Not a great idea, ha ha!

    • We were looking forward to it too – until it got here! hahaha! I hope you have a nice and easy five days leading in the break time. 🙂

  9. I think year round school is a great idea. Sounds like you had an adventure.

    Your daughter looks so much like you. Beautiful.

    • Aw, thanks Autumn! She’s a nutbar for sure! I think I’ll keep her around a bit. 🙂

  10. You’re heading back to school already?? We’ve only been out for one week of vacation so far! Looks like it was a fun, but exhausting trip.

    • We are indeed. We’re year round. The track she is on let out five weeks ago. The summer track out is always the most difficult because it is the longest and the camps are more varied and out of the way or everyday life. She’ll start back tomorrow and we’ll get a nice (but shorter and more contained) three week break in September.


What say you?