One of the many great things about New Jersey is the variety of places in which you can live. We have mountains, the shore, and everything in between. I've spent my life living all over this state and taking something different from each place, no two of which are alike.

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I was born in Newark, and spent the first 16 years in Union City at a time when some referred to it as “Camelot.” It was an Italian neighborhood that was quickly becoming Hispanic. I once counted 60 kids, all within five years of each other, living in a five-block radius from Summit Avenue to New York Avenue - then 14th street to 19th street. We all pretty much got along and everyone looked out for each other, It was truly a “neighborhood.”

We then moved to Marlboro into a brand new development called “Whittier Oaks” which was a predominantly transplanted Jewish neighborhood mostly from Brooklyn. While there are a lot of similarities between the Italians and Jews, it was still a culture shock, as was the fact that you are now living without everything being so close by.

Later, I lived in Old Bridge in a place called "The Arcade Garden Apartments.” I moved to "The Country Club Apartments" in Eatontown,  and "Twin Rivers" in East Windsor. Now I live in Roosevelt where I love the fact that my children live down the block from their school and most of their friends are within walking distance. I imagine someday, they’ll go out just like I did and be home at 5 p.m. for dinner, then go out again and be home by the curfew.

Have you spent all of your life in New Jersey? If so, how many places have you lived and how did you like each one?