Sunday, June 29, 2008

Wet Paint Studio Art Exhibit at Osprey's Dominion

Osprey's Dominion is one of our favorite wineries since years before their expansion of their tasting room. We love the casual and fun atmosphere and the combination of more complex, award winning wines you'll want to sip on their own with bargain fruity picnic wines, including the Strawberry Wine, and their inexpensive Chardonnay, Regina Maris, which makes a perfect house white.

Even though I'm pregnant, we still make Osprey's a regular stop because there is always live music and plenty of room to picnic and let our toddler run about.

This weekend we got lucky and happened to catch the Wet Paints Studio Art Exhibit. Their were only a few artists there, and only one really impressed me: Shannon Elkins of Medford. Her work has a lot of energy. Some of Elkins pieces are tighter and others have looser brushwork and a more abstracted feel, but there is a consistent sense of style throughout the work on display. Her figure studies are wonderful and I would have loved to purchase her sunflowers or one of the landscapes she had on display.

She is also the founder of Art From Our Heart, a benefit for people suffering from diabetes.

Wish we were in the market for an original oil painting right now!

Monday, June 2, 2008

SAF-T-SWIM in Coram

Kudos to SAF-T-SWIM in Coram.

I went for my daughter's first private lesson today and I was incredibly impressed with the skill, compassion, and professionalism of the staff.

We signed up because I think swimming is both wonderful exercise and great fun. The sooner kids learn to swim, the more comfortable they are in the water.

Originally, I signed up for "Mommy and Me" class, but after discovering that all the babies were under 7 months' (the class is for up to three years' old, but usually enrolls mostly babies under 12 months'), I asked if I could switch to individual lessons for my 21 month old child. They handled this request for me, although they certainly had no obligation to do so.

I was a bit apprehensive because my daughter is very attached and is one of those children who sometimes holds her breath until passing out when upset.

After handing her to the instructor, I left the pool area and went behind the tinted glass. She did, as expected, scream. However, the instructor held her safely and with remarkable cheer and patience eventually managed to distract her. From what I have observed, all the instructors are similarly calm and upbeat with their pint-sized swimmers.

With our next child, I plan on getting him in the water earlier and, since it will be fall when he's old enough to make the plunge, we'll start with the Mommy and Me Class at SAF-T-SWIM.

SAF-T-Swim has locations in Bohemia, Commack, Coram, Deer Park, East Meadow, Riverhead, and Smithtown.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Greater Port Jefferson Arts Festival Small, But Has Potential

Today we went to the 2008 Juried Arts Festival held by the Greater Port Jefferson & Northern Brookhaven Arts Council.

It was tiny--just about a block. There were a number of fine artists, all of whom were very open to conversation and some of whom had interesting pieces, but no one with whom I absolutely fell in love. There was also one jewelry artist I think is wonderful.

Port Jefferson used to hold this as an annual event and then it disappeared for years. So, despite a small start, the festival has huge potential to grow (assuming everyone can find a place to park).

Overall, the best show I've seen this spring in the Mid-Suffolk North Shore area, in terms of quality of crafts and the number of booths, has been the one at Deepwells Farms from Preferred Promotions. They have it again this July so I will be there.