Category Archives: holiday storage

Military Families on the Move

Moving is part of everyday life for military personnel. Soldiers and their families may be asked to relocate every 2 to 4 years. These moves often take place with short notice, requiring quick planning.

Military personnel who are about to deploy have a lot of choices to make regarding what items to take with them, and what to place into storage. A self storage unit can be a great option, not only for furniture, electronics, and appliances, but also storing a vehicle such as cars, trucks, motorcycles, and boats. Your local self storage facility will likely offer military self storage discounts for storage units as well as packing supplies, and possibly even the free use of a moving truck or moving van like we offer at The Storage Inn of Egg Harbor Township, NJ , and The Storage Inn II of Ocean City NJ. Most military bases have self storage facilities located near to them that offer secure gated storage – some even have resident security managers and climate controlled storage units. Many storage facilities also offer your choice of affordable indoor or outdoor space for vehicle storage.

Surface Deployment and Distribution Command are part of relocation departments designed to help military families with their moves. These departments also offer moving check lists like the one below.

Moving Tips for Military Families

Military families are expert movers! Here are some tips for moving with the military that should help make the moving process as smooth as possible!

1. Have a playbook with the moving orders, important dates and other documentation. Create a detailed list of everything that is to be moved.

2. Begin “decluttering” as soon as possible. Sort through items and designate them as sell, donate, or store – having less items to pack and move helps reduce stress on moving day

3. Have family and friends help with cleaning the old home when it is empty. It is also recommended to pre-clean the bathroom and kitchen in your new home.

4. Pack a “Go” bag for the first day at your new home with items such as sheets, towels, shower curtains and soap. Military families may not be able to control what goes where on their moving trucks, making it difficult to find items like laundry soap, brooms, mops, and household cleaners until the truck is completely unpacked. Quick and efficient planning is the key, but then, being quick and efficient is probably second nature to most military family members!

If you’re a member of a military family, The folks at The Storage Inn would love to help. Stop in and see us, and Thank You for your service! Happy Veterans Day!

Remember those you gave their lives for our freedom.

Remembering the Real Meaning of Memorial Day

Memorial Day weekend is finally upon us, and the yard is buzzing here at The Storage Inn in Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey. People are visiting their storage units, retrieving their barbecue grills and beach chairs in preparation for the big weekend. As I watch the busy storage yard activity, it occurs to me that many of our tenants and quite a few of our employees are veterans.

Oftentimes we so get wrapped up in big holiday weekend plans with BBQs and beach time, that we forget the real reason for many holidays, including Memorial Day – A day to honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country. To help put things in perspective, below are casualty statistics from the greatest battles in US history.

Highest Casualty Battles in U.S.History

  1. Battle of Meuse-Argonne World War I: 26,277
  2. Battle of the Bulge (WW2) 19,276
  3. Battle of Okinawa (WW2) 12,513
  4. Battle of Gettysburg (Civil) 7,863
  5. Battle of Guadalcanal (WW2) 7,099
  6. Battle of Iwo Jima (WW2) 6,821
  7. Antietam (Civil) 3,654
  8. Battle of Shiloh (Civil) 3,482
  9. Bull Run II (Civil) 3,000
  10. Battle of Saipan (WW2) 2,949

Some famous battles that do not make the list:

Dec. 7, 1941, Pearl Harbor: 2,403
Tet Offensive Vietnam War: 1536
Invasion of Normandy (WW2) 1,465

So, as you’re biting into that hamburger, and cooling off with a cold one, take a moment to remember those who gave their lives, to preserve our American way of life.  Have a great Memorial Day weekend, and God Bless America!

Happy Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine’s Day From The Storage Inn

Lots of Cards and The Legend of Saint Valentine

It’s a cold February day here at The Storage Inn in Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey. One of our storage space tenants, Mrs Ragnoli, just stopped in to the office for some boxes and bubble wrap, but before she left, she said, “ Don’t forget to buy your wife roses – you know Tuesday is Valentine’s Day!”. “She’s right“ I thought – “ I also need to make a dinner reservation”.

Speaking of Valentine’s Day I recently read that approximately 150 million Valentine’s Day cards are exchanged annually, making Valentine’s Day the second most popular card-sending holiday after Christmas,.This made me think. “ What is this holiday really about other than roses, cards, and chocolates? And what size self storage space would hold 150 million greeting cards?”

The Man, the Myth, the Legend

I checked it out and found that the history of Saint Valentine’s Day is shrouded in mystery. Who was Saint Valentine, and how did he become associated with a holiday that celebrates love? One legend contends that Valentine was a priest who served during the third century in Rome. When Emperor Claudius II decided that single men made better soldiers than those with wives and families, he outlawed marriage for young men. Valentine, realizing the injustice of the decree, defied Claudius and continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret. When Valentine’s actions were discovered, Claudius ordered that he be put to death.  According to one legend, an imprisoned Valentine actually sent the first “valentine” greeting himself after he fell in love with a young girl, possibly his jailer’s daughter, who visited him during his confinement. It’s alleged that he wrote her a letter signed “From your Valentine,” an expression that is still in use today.

At the end of the 5th century, Pope Gelasius declared February 14th  St. Valentine’s Day. It was not until much later, however, that the day became definitively associated with love. During the Middle Ages, it was commonly believed in France and England that February 14th was the beginning of the mating season for birds, which added to the idea that Valentine’s Day should be a day for romance.Valentine greetings were popular as far back as the Middle Ages, though written Valentine’s didn’t begin to appear until after 1400.

Love American Style

Valentine’s Day began to be popularly celebrated around the 17th century. By the middle of the 18th, it was common for friends and lovers of all social classes to exchange small tokens of affection or handwritten notes, and by 1900 printed cards began to replace written letters .

Americans probably began exchanging hand-made valentines in the early 1700s. In the 1840s, Esther A. Howland began selling the first mass-produced valentines in America. Howland, known as the “Mother of the Valentine,” made elaborate creations with real lace, ribbons and colorful pictures. Today, according to the Greeting Card Association,Valentine’s Day is the second largest card-sending holiday and women purchase approximately 85 percent of all valentines.

Storing 150 Million Valentine’s Day Cards

This is certainly an approximation because there is a wide variety of card sizes and shapes, but if a customer wanted to store 150 million cards that were 4 x 6 inches and printed on 100lb cardstock (.011 inches thickness x 2 sides) it would take about 45,833 cubic feet. To put that into perspective, we would need about 46 storage units that were 10 foot tall x 10 foot wide x 10 foot deep. That’s a lot of cards!

So there you have it – Valentine’s day is about buying cards and eating Chocolate! – Just kidding!  It’s actually about Love and Romance and Taking the Time to tell your special somebody that you care. Happy Valentines Day to All from the staff at The Storage Inn!

Happy 2017!

Happy New Years Everyone!

Self Storage and New Years Resolutions

It’s almost New Year’s Day here at the Storage Inn Self Storage in Egg Harbor Township New Jersey, and I’m hearing a lot of our customers talking about their plans for 2017 –  things like being healthier, more financially responsible, and of course, getting organized. Yesterday I met a nice lady, Mrs. Saymon, who not only rented a storage space at our The Storage Inn II  in Ocean City NJ, but also took advantage of our Free Moving Truck Rental.

“Are you moving?” I inquired.

“Nope – Just getting organized – It’s my New Years resolution.” she replied, eyes rolling.

We talked a bit, I wished her luck, and she was on her way to get a head start on her resolutions for 2017.

I’ve made many New Year’s resolutions over the years, (few of which I’ve actually kept!), but this made me wonder where this tradition of making promises to oneself actually originated.

So where did New Year’s Resolutions begin?

Our modern day “New Year” started when Julius Caesar introduced the Gregorian Calendar. He moved the first day of the year to January 1st in honor of Janus the Roman God of beginnings.  However, Caesar’s idea didn’t quite catch on until it was made official in 1582 by Pope Gregory XIII. The Gregorian calendar is the same one that we use today.

But! It Goes Back Even Further Than The Romans!

It turns out the New Years concept actually started about four thousand years ago with the Babylonians. They rang in their New Year with an eleven day festival in March. These folks started it all by making promises to their gods, in hopes they would earn good favor in the New Year. One of their favorite resolutions was to get out of debt – sound familiar? Historians are unclear on whether or not the Babylonians resolved to be healthier. My research suggests however that the ancient Babylonians did not have to deal with the temptations provided by their local McDonald’s or Dairy Queen!

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So there it is folks. We continue to celebrate a tradition passed on from generation to generation even after all these years! And so time marches on, and the New Year will come and it will go. But this year, I’m determined to shed those extra pounds. Granted I weigh just about the same as I did last year when I made this New Year’s goal! 

It’s been so long how do I get to the gym again? – oh, that’s right – you make a right at McDonald’s, and it’s across the street from the Dairy Queen! Good luck, and Happy New Year everyone! 

Where did Santa’s Reindeer come from?

Why Does Santa Use Reindeer?

A few fun holiday facts from The Storage Inn

Where did Santa’s reindeer come from?

Here at The Storage Inn self storage in Egg Harbor Township New Jersey, we are well-known by our iconic, blue and yellow horse carriage that sits right in front of the storage facility, but during the holiday season, we also bring out our big blue and yellow sleigh as part of our holiday decorations.

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As I watched our customers roll in and out through the security gate, for whatever reason it got me wondering about how reindeer became associated with Santa’s sleigh.  I know that in early American life, sleighs were pulled by horses as a means to get around during snowy weather… so where did Santa’s reindeer come from? Well, I did a little research, and here’s what I found out courtesy of KidzWorld.com

Reindeer Fun Facts

Santa’s reindeer made their first official appearance less than 200 years ago in 1823, when Clement C. Moore published the poem “The Night Before Christmas,” where he says that “eight tiny rein-deer” led Santa’s sleigh through the night

In North America, reindeer are also known as caribou.

Reindeer live in the northernmost parts of the world; they’re native to Arctic regions, as well as northern Europe and Siberia. This facts explains why reindeer were ideal for leading Santa’s sleigh – since he needs animals that can survive at the North Pole!

The name “reindeer” comes from the Norse word “hreinn,” meaning deer.

Both male and female reindeer grow antlers; there’s no way to be sure, but that could mean that Santa’s reindeer were in fact female.

Reindeer are uniquely capable of living in harsh and cold environments. Their noses actually warm the air before they breathe it in, so that their lungs don’t freeze.

The original reindeer were Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Dunder, and Blixem (later known as Donner and Blitzen).

The names Donder and Blitzen translate from German as thunder and lightning.

Some people like to leave carrots for Santa’s reindeer as a special treat on Christmas Eve, but think about leaving moss instead – that’s a real reindeer’s favorite food!

Rudolph Fun Facts

As for the most famous reindeer of all, Rudolph, wasn’t an original member of Santa’s reindeer posse. The little red-nosed reindeer didn’t make an appearance in popular culture until 1939, when department store Montgomery Ward hired writer Robert L. May to write a book starring a brand new Christmas character.

Rudolph’s story was adapted into the famous song, still sung today, in 1949.

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The much loved stop-motion movie version of Rudolph’s story first aired on December 6, 1964, and has aired countless times each year since then!

To celebrate his 75th birthday, the United States Postal Service issued a set of Rudolph stamps in November 2014

With all these amazing facts, it’s clear Reindeer have a place of significance in Christmas legend. It’s amazing to think how important Rudolph is to the modern North American concept of Christmas, considering that he’s only 76 years old!

We hope you enjoyed our fun reindeer facts and it won’t be long now. Keep an ear to the air and listen for those familiar hoof steps on your roof top. Happy Holidays from The Storage Inn in Egg Harbor Township, NJ and The Storage Inn II in Ocean City, NJ!!!

Scams Increase During the Holidays

The Twelve Scams of Christmas!

The Twelve Scams of Christmas

Here at The Storage Inn in Egg Harbor Township New Jersey, we get our fair share of suspicious activity including emails asking us to click on questionable links, and scam phone calls trying to get donations. I’ve even had one of our more senior storage space customers tell me about an email that she had received regarding the estate of a distant, unknown relative, who had passed away in another country. The scammer was requesting that she send money in order to get the funds out of Africa. Thank goodness she didn’t fall for it!

It definitely seems like the scammers increase their activity around the holiday season, probably because most people are in more of a giving mood than usual? I checked with the Better Business Bureau, and found out that my suspicions were correct – More scams are reported during the holiday season than any other time of year!

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The Better Business Bureau has some interesting facts about holiday shopping scams. Here are their “Twelve Scams of Christmas”!

1. Mystery Shopper scams: The most common are text messages enticing people to sign up to become a part-time mystery shopper for say $400 or more per gig. It may be tempting to earn some extra cash this time of year, but it’s actually a scam looking for financial and bank information.
2. Social Media Gift Exchanges: Has someone on social media asked you to take part in a Christmas gift exchange that will result in you getting 36 gifts? While it may sound good, promptly decline. It’s a pyramid scam, which is illegal.
3. Pet scams: It’s a popular gift, but be careful about buying a pet online. Puppy mills and fake pedigrees are common. Make sure breeders are reputable or you may end up with a sick animal.
4. Malware Holiday e-cards: Most people are aware of the dangers of clicking on url links to malware in the email they receive, but the scams are still out there, so beware.
5. Stranded grandkids: If a grandchild or other relative, who is ‘stranded’ or in ‘trouble’ in another country, sends an email looking for money, double check with family first, no matter how urgent it seems. This is a scam that has taken unsuspecting relatives for thousands of dollars!
6. Pickpockets: They usually strike when you’re not paying attention. Keep your purse or wallet secure when shopping. Don’t get overburdened or put shopping bags down.

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7. Stolen gift cards: Buy gift cards from reputable dealers or in store, not online or from individuals. Scammers sell the card, then remove the funds before you hand over the gift.
8. Santa scammers: Double check on websites that offer to send your child a letter from Santa. This may be a scam looking for personal information.
9. Fake charities: Charities are active during the Christmas season, but be wary of charities that seem suspect. Do your homework before you give.
10. Online ads for hot toys and gadgets: Scammers prey on parents desperate for the latest toy their child is asking for from Santa and might be tempted to buy them online. Never make a purchases unless you see the https:// in front of the website’s domain name. If there’s no contact information for the seller you may want to avoid the purchase. They may ask for payment by wire or money card which is another red flag. If you’re not sure how reputable the company is, try calling the vendor and speak to customer service to feel them out. Search for reviews of the company online. Try Googling the company name followed by the word “scam” to see if any results show up.
11. Travel scams: Be cautious when booking through online ads for a last-minute getaway. Ask for references and never hand over money to someone you haven’t checked out first.
12. Romance scams: It’s tough to be alone during the holidays, but if your new online love starts asking for money, especially early on, and definitely if you haven’t even met yet… run! They aren’t who they claim to be.
Hopefully these tips will help you to be a smart Santa this holiday season – Happy Holidays from The Storage Inn of Egg Harbor Township NJ and The Storage Inn II in Ocean City New Jersey!

To find out more about scams in your area, or to report a scam visit the BBB’s Scam Tracker.

Mr. Nick in his moving truck

Mr. Nick in his moving truck

Mr. Nick is one busy storage unit renter

So, it’s December here at The Storage Inn in Egg Harbor Township New Jersey – Almost time for my annual visit from one of our biggest customers, Mr. Nick. Mr. Nick’s been a storage unit tenant with us for as long as anyone can remember. He’s an unusual guy – older – the outdoorsy type – from up North somewhere. You know, big bushy beard, wears a lot of red flannel shirts with suspenders. That sort of thing.

Mr. Nick has seven of our extra large storage spaces with the extra high ceilings. He stops in every year around this time to let us know that even though he’ll be emptying out the storage units, he’s not moving out.

 

feature_christmas-elf-featMr. Nick is certainly a bit on the eccentric side and I’m assuming pretty wealthy since he’s mentioned renting storage units like ours all over the world. Each year right around Christmas time, his crew pulls in with a couple of giant, red S.C. Moving and Storage vans, and empties out out all seven of his storage spaces. The funny thing is, beginning in January, I’ll see his helpers back again and on a monthly basis, refilling the storage units with electronics, toys, sporting goods, and all sorts of goodies.

This year I decided to have a little chat with his crew. Nice guys – unusually short, but very well mannered and hard workers too. They all refer to Mr. Nick as “The big guy” which is quite true in height and around the waist line.

While his helpers were in the yard the other day,  I decided to be a little nosey.

“Excuse me guys. Just curious. What type of business is Mr. Nick in if you don’t mind me asking?” I questioned.

“Import/export” replied one of his of helpers.

“Oh, so he buys and then resells things” I asked.

“No, no – He gives it all away!” answered a particularly short man, who appeared to be the leader of the crew.

“Wow, really? That’s great – a wealthy philanthropist!” I gushed.

“I guess you could say that, but the big guy really doesn’t care about money – He just likes to make people happy!” came a high pitched voice from behind a pile of toys.

If that don’t beat all I thought to myself. I tipped my Storage Inn hat and wished Mr. Nick’s crew a good day and Happy Holidays. I walked back to the rental office thinking about my conversation with Mr. Nick’s helpers. Hmmmm, I thought – Puzzling. A guy from up North, with a bushy white beard, dressed in all red, with an import/ export charitable organization?… who collects toys and other goodies throughout the year, only to give them away at Christmas time? If I didn’t know any better I would guess he’s… omg…. I think I know what the “S. C.” in  S. C. Moving and Storage stands for!  Happy Holidays from The Storage Inn!

 

Portrait of the Real Santa Claus gesturing to keep quiet

Portrait of the Real Santa Claus gesturing to keep quiet

 

Santa’s Little Secret

Santa's Secret Hiding Place Revealed

Santa’s Secret Hiding Place Revealed

Well, here it is December, and the holiday season is upon us at The Storage Inn in Egg Harbor Township New Jersey. One of our recent storage customers, Mr. Robertson, came in today for a van rental. “ You just moved into your storage space last month –  you’re not leaving us already, are you?” I asked. “ No, just doing some Christmas shopping”, he replied.  It turns out that Mr. Robertson  has three sons, ages 13 through 18, and he was on his way to shop for a bicycle, a surfboard, and a big screen TV!  “Pretty hard to hide gifts like that around the house” he said. “I would ask a friend to hide them for me, but the only people that I know that would have space, and don’t have kids in the home, are my parents, and they live in the next state.”

So we completed the van rental, and off went Mr. Robertson. What a great idea, I thought to myself. What better place to hide gifts, then under lock and key, in a totally secure, weatherproof storage space, that only you have the passcode to?  “That’s one smart Santa” I thought to myself.

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Mr. Robertson returned late that afternoon, and stopped in the office. “ How did you make out?” I asked.  “Great!” he replied. “I even found some really good sales on TVs and bicycles – My wife will be so happy”. So after purchasing some boxes, tape, and bubble wrap for the additional gifts that he had bought, Mr. Robertson went back to his self storage unit to unload.

So if you’re a secret Santa in need of a great place  to hide your holiday gifts from prying eyes, stop into your local self-storage facility, The Storage Inn for a convenient solution. No matter what the size, or how many gifts you have to hide, I’m sure we can find the perfect storage space for you. Well, I’ve got to go now – just heard about a place that’s having a great sale on big screen TVs! Happy holidays!

Happy Holidays From The Storage Inn

Happy Holidays From The Storage Inn

Thanksgiving & Moving to the New World

Here at The Storage Inn self storage in Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey, we tend to meet a lot of people who are in the process of moving. This made me think about the move that we celebrate every November here in the United States – The move made by the pilgrims, from Great Britain, to the new world! These brave souls, for all intents and purposes, loaded all of their worldly belongings into a floating self storage unit – the Mayflower, and set sail for their new home, not knowing if they would actually find it, or even survive the trip.

Eventually the pilgrims made it across the deep blue sea, and landed in what is now Plymouth Massachusetts, with dreams of beginning a new life. The pilgrims survived their first 10 months including barely surviving their first American winter. They had built seven houses, a small meeting hall, and three store houses. They called these three buildings “New World Self Storage” – Just kidding!  What they did do was to celebrate their first harvest, and having survived the winter, with a week long feast, during which they were joined by the Wampanoag Indian tribe.

Unlike our modern Thanksgiving, There was no Butterball turkey, or mashed potatoes, but instead, fish, duck, goose, venison, and vegetables such as onions, beans, lettuce, spinach, cabbage, and carrots. The feast likely included fruits and berries such as blueberries, plums, grapes, gooseberries, raspberries and, of course cranberries, which Native Americans ate and used as a natural dye. Historians are not certain whether there was a “kids table” at the first Thanksgiving, but if there was, you can rest assured that the words “ Stop throwing gooseberries at your sister!” were heard.

Today we celebrate Thanksgiving by gathering with family, eating until near explosion, and falling asleep as we “watch” football. So in the spirit of Thanksgiving… I must say I’m thankful for the Pilgrims, the Wampanoag Indians, and… Pepto-Bismol –  Hey, I have to get back to helping people find storage space after the holidays!

If you’d be thankful for a little extra space storage to store your stuff, please stop by and see us at The Storage Inn in Egg Harbor Township, NJ or The Storage Inn II in Ocean City, NJ – Happy Holidays!

Remember to thank Veterans all year long

Thank You Mr. Gamble For Your Service to Our Country

Honoring Our Veterans at The Storage Inn

As manager of the Storage Inn self storage in Egg Harbor Township, I get to meet, and speak with a lot of storage customers who are, or have been in the military. And since this past Friday was Veteran’s Day the subject has been on my mind. Yesterday, while I was doing my regular storage facility inspections, I noticed one of our customers, Mr. Gamble, going to his storage space. Knowing that he was a veteran, I went down to his storage unit to shake his hand, and thank him for his service. We had a nice conversation, during which I noticed a box full of VHS tapes and DVDs in the corner of his storage area, all of which were military movies. Turns out Mr.Gamble is quite the expert on war movies, so I asked him for his top 10.  “Way too many great ones to choose just 10” he said. That got me wondering just which military movies are considered to be “the best” so I decided to see what the critics say.

Here are the top 10 American War Movies according to the Internet Movie Database (IMDb)

1.Saving Private Ryan (1998)  Following the Normandy Landings, a group of U.S. soldiers go behind enemy lines to retrieve a paratrooper whose brothers have been killed in action. (169 mins.)

2.The Longest Day (1962) The events of D-Day, told on a grand scale from both the Allied and German points of view. (178 mins.)

3.Midway (1976) A dramatization of the battle that was widely heralded as a turning point of the Pacific Theatre of World War II. (132 mins.)

4.Full Metal Jacket (1987) A pragmatic U.S. Marine observes the dehumanizing effects the Vietnam War has on his fellow recruits from their brutal boot camp training to the bloody street fighting in Hue. (116 mins.)

5.Black Hawk Down (2001) 123 elite U.S. soldiers drop into Somalia to capture two top lieutenants of a renegade warlord and find themselves in a desperate battle with a large force of heavily-armed Somalis. (144 mins.)

6.Inglourious Basterds (2009) In Nazi-occupied France during World War II, a plan to assassinate Nazi leaders by a group of Jewish U.S. soldiers coincides with a theatre owner’s vengeful plans for the same. (153 mins.)

7.Jarhead (2005) A psychological study of operations desert shield and desert storm during the gulf war; through the eyes of a U.S marine sniper who struggles to cope with the possibility his girlfriend may be cheating on him back home. (125 mins.)

8.Kelly’s Heroes (1970) A group of U.S. soldiers sneaks across enemy lines to get their hands on a secret stash of Nazi treasure. (144 mins.)

9.The Hurt Locker (2008) During the Iraq War, a Sergeant recently assigned to an army bomb squad is put at odds with his squad mates due to his maverick way of handling his work. (131 mins.)

10.The Great Escape (1963) Allied prisoners of war plan for several hundred of their number to escape from a German camp during World War II

The exceptional bravery that it takes to put one’s life on the line to protect our country, and beliefs is immeasurable, so when you see a veteran please thank him or her for their service.