Grams of the Week – Aug 14

Here’s a recap of the best instagrams of last week. If you want the day to day follow me here!

beach 91 community garden 2

By now everyone’s garden is in full swing! These are tomatoes from the Beach 91st Street Community Garden (now on instagram) which I’m a member of. What are you going to make with all of your tomatoes this season? Here’s a great canning tutorial we posted a while back. Send me your tomato photos and I’ll post them on twitter.

beach 91 community garden 1

Another beauty from the community garden. Cooking with zucchini flowers is a long-lived Italian tradition. Have you ever done it? Here’s a delicious recipe from Giada.


A less elegant picture than the two above (squeamish be warned) …

cat and mouse rockaway queens

Obama, my cat that lives on our porch is  THUG. This is his fifth victim this summer. While I’m proud of him, my heart still breaks for these little mice. Thus is the circle of life I suppose.



tagged in instagram

tonight at Epsteins

Ye Mighty Wave

Want to see a trapeze artist tonight in Rockaway? Come to the Ye Mighty Wave and Tan Brown rock show tonight at Epsteins. Show starts at – 10:00. $5 at the door.

88-02 Rockaway Beach St

FB Event

tagged in music, rockaway

Manfeet of Rockaway

 Previously Published in The Wave.

Manfeet are neglected, and rightfully so.  But no matter how unseemly they may appear, they are still among God’s creations and merit consideration. Walking on the boardwalk, you’ll see them variously clad, and that’s got me thinking: how do the men of Rockaway feel about summer footwear?

Of course, many Rockaway men are sworn devotees of the traditional flip-flop. Most appropriate, right? Some locals wear flip-flops well into November. Local legend John Sica is one of those men. He explains this preference, “I hate laces. Heat escapes through my head so I wear a hat and keep my feet free. It’s important to avoid puddles in the colder weather.”


The no shoe. I see the surfers and skaters go shoe-less all the time. It’s like they’re cultivating a human shoe out of their own skin. The feet of these men are calloused and brawny from years – possibly decades – of beach life. The heat of the summer sand, stepping on broken glass or the possibility of smooshing into dog shit is not an issue for them. Props. Keith Vittore is one of these guys, “I started going shoeless when I moved to Rockaway in 2013. Once I got here, I don’t know why, it just felt right. I feel like my feet belong directly on the earth.”


Sneakers on the beach. I’ve seen dozens of men wear their sneakers on the beach, some even with socks. Maybe they’re working and just taking a quick break? It’s unclear why the phenomena is occurring this summer. My husband is a big proponent of wearing his sneakers on the beach. He doesn’t even own a pair of flip-flops or sandals of any kind.  “When you wear flip-flops,” he pedantically explains, “You’re broadcasting to the world that you intend to do nothing of importance all day long. No going to work, no sawing, no yard work, no carrying heavy stuff. Additionally, manfeet are disgusting to begin with and flip-flops, over time, make them hideous. I don’t ever want to see them except my own in the shower.”


The croc. I know only one man who strictly wears white crocs all the time. It’s Rob Bryn of The Wild Yaks and it’s his signature look (white crocs and no shirt that is). He wrote lyrics about his crocs in a song for his new blues band Ye Mighty Wave. “I’m gonna get out of bed. Put my white crocs on my feet. I’m gonna cross the street. I’m gonna go to the beach.”  I asked Rob: Why crocs? “Wearing crocs for me, honestly, is part of my total lack of interest in responsibility. If I wear crocs everyday, I never have to think about what I’m going to put on my feet and you don’t have to bend down to tie laces, they just slip on and off. I can wear them on the beach or at work and they’re easy to clean. It’s like Einstein wearing the same clothes every day. If I wear crocs all the time I never have to think of what I’m wearing on my feet ever again. They’re also buy one get one half-off.”

tagged in fashion, summer


A few weeks ago I wrote about how my cat Lefty went missing. I had spoken to my neighbor Jill Lauri about his disappearance. Jill is an animal communicator and her words truly comforted me, easing my anxiety throughout the ordeal. After speaking with Jill, she went home and connected with Lefty. She took the time without being asked, and wrote me these beautiful words… “Lefty says that he is fine and exploring. He is not far away and plans to return home. Lefty says that initially a noise startled him and he took off. He does not want you to worry about him, as he says that he is more resilient than you think. Lefty wants you to know that he Loves you and that there is nothing to feel guilty about  He asks that you create something beautiful/wonderful and know that he will be with you as you do so. Use the time you carve out to connect/feel the Love you share with him. That is what will bring him back to you, when the time is right.”

Jill was right. Lefty did return home unharmed. It was an enlightening experience, and I want to share with you a bit about Jill’s animal healing and communication practice. I also want to tell you about an exciting event Jill is organizing in Rockaway – ANIMAL ROCK 2017.

But first some background. Jill Lauri is a native New Yorker, raised in Canarsie. She lived in Manhattan before deciding in 2008 that Rockaway was the place she was destined to be. She was drawn to Rockaway because of the ocean and its connections to nature and animals. Jill earned her MBA from Columbia Business School and has a MSW from Hunter College. Her social work, spiritual coaching and unique relationship with animals have led to her true calling, healing with animals. On Jill’s website, she writes in detail about specific relationships with animals that have helped cultivate her unique communication skills. Her dog Misty who was diagnosed with cancer, her cat Jessy who was born in her home, a shark rescue here in Rockaway and a mouse that needed healing and love in his last hours, are just a few of the beings Jill has worked with. “Over the years I’ve continually come in contact with animals that needed healing and I’ve learned from each one of them, different lessons.” Jill explains.

I asked Jill how she begins communication with animals. “It’s actually easier when I’m not physically present with the animals because there are less distractions. So, I’m communicating telepathically. Animals are usually more relaxed than we think.  They take things in stride and that’s why they have so much to teach us and to help us heal. They are wise.”

The true turning point came for Jill after the trauma of Hurricane Sandy. “It made me take a step back and evaluate what’s really important and why I’m here. I didn’t want fear to determine my life and I didn’t want fear to determine where I wanted to live. Not everyone gets that I connect with animals and that’s ok! Living through the storm and its aftermath helped me find my voice and I can speak my truth about animal healing and communication.”

Jill’s been working diligently to organize ANIMAL ROCK 2017. The event will be held on Sunday, July 30, 2017 at Beach 94/95 St & Shore Front Pkwy, 10am to 6pm. The gathering is a celebration of our relationship with animals. “I’m hoping people will come out and celebrate and look at our relationship with animals and wildlife in a new light, exposing people to new ideas.”

The event will have information tables, reiki healing, and a memorial service for our animals that have passed over. Cathy Browne, guest speaker will discuss feral cats and TNR (trap, neuter, release). Nicole Valenti from the Riverhead Foundation will speak about what to do if you encounter stranded or injured sea animals. Boarders Surf Shop, Burn Fitness, Cuisine by Claudette, Thai Rock, Uncle Louie G and Zingara Vintage have donated raffle prizes! If you’re looking for a new companion, Animal Care and Control will have a mobile adoption truck on site. Donations are very much welcome and all proceeds will be gifted to the animals at the Animal Care Centers of NYC. Contact Jill at Jill[at]HealingWithAnimals.com212-289-3540 if you’re interested in donating or volunteering at this exciting event. Please visit to learn more about the days schedule and additional information. I will be there, and I hope to see you there too. Please come out and celebrate our relationship with animals!


tagged in animals, events, rockaway