Jennifer Lopez & Marc Anthony: Babies Safe at Home

According to Life & Style now: kidnap threats against J.Lo's babies, Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony fortified their 10,000 square-foot Brookville, Long Island estate in preparation for their recently delivered twins: Max and Emme.

J. Lo's million-dollar gates protect babies (RealLI -2.26.08)


Twins for Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony

Long Island's Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony are parents. Jennifer Lopez gave birth to twins -- one girl and one boy -- early Friday, February 22nd. Delievered at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, the baby girl arrived at 12:12 a.m. and the baby boy at 12:23 a.m.

Congratulations to Jennifer and hubby Marc Anthony!


Time to Buy Your Long Island Home?

Homes prices are down and interest rates are low. Is it time to buy that dream home on Long Island? A growing number of home-buyers think so, and here's why.

According to the Multiple Listing Service of Long Island, January data shows a $417,500 closed median home price for Long Island, the lowest since April, 2005 when it was $415,000. This year’s closed median price is 4.6 percent lower than the January 2007 closed median home price which was $437,800.

With lower prices and lower interest rates than a year ago, the same median priced Long Island home costs $2,273 today versus $2,491 last year--assuming a 10% downpayment and 6% 30 year fixed rate.

Hey, that's a nifty savings of over $200 per month!

The median price for Suffolk County homes sold last month was $373,500, a 6 % dip from a year ago; while Nassau's was $440,000.


Moving Out - Moving In

A record eight million Americans -- some 20,000 people every day -- relocated to another state last year.

So where are these families headed and why?

According to the WSJ article States of Opportunity, Americans continued leaving the Northeast and Midwest for the South and the West. Not much new there in terms of general trends. But what this data doesn't capture is the in-migration to Long Island--which is huge.

Clearly, a chunk of the movers are Long Islanders, including young people beginning new careers, retirees looking for warmer weather and financially distressed families looking for a new start.

What's interesting about Long Island, which is not as true for Upstate New York, is that most of those migrating South are being replaced by those migrating East from Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn as well as those arriving from abroad.

For example, Nassau County alone saw its Latino population more than double between 1990 and 2006 (77,386 to 160,405). During that same period Nassau saw its foreign-born population increase more than four-fold (52,106 to 237,293).

Expect these trends to continue and even accelerate as more Long Islanders retire and younger families, spurred by dropping prices and low interest rates, seek the greener pastures of Long Island.

WSJ Article: States of Opportunity


Adelante's Miriam Garcia

Newsday did a very nice piece on Adelante's CEO Miriam Garcia. Here's an excerpt:

Suffolk County's political elite has noticed Garcia's rise.

"Miriam has been phenomenal in networking,'' says lobbyist Steve Moll of Island Public Affairs in Kings Park, who has been working with Garcia to raise money. "She runs an organization with a few staff and volunteers that provide services to some of the neediest people in Suffolk County.''
Full article: Making a difference for Hispanics: Miriam Garcia finds her place.


The "International Express" to Flushing and Beyond

According to Trouble on the "Immigrant Express" (by Larry Tung, Gotham Gazette, February '08), the #7 Train from Times Square to Flushing is known as the Immigrant" or "International Express" because of the diversity of its passengers and neighborhoods its serves.

Running along 19 miles from Times Square to Flushing, Queens, the 7 train serves 24 stations and nearly 400,000 riders a day. It is known as the "immigrant express" or "international express" because it goes through neighborhoods occupied by people representing more than 150 nations.
However, the diversity on the #7 is simply a clearest signal of the demographic transformation that is occuring throughout Long Island. Both Nassau and Suffolk counties have seen an ever expanding flow of immigrants--and anybody riding the LIRR knows that the diversity of passengers is at an all time high.

Historically, it's a quick change of habit from taking the #7 Flushing Local to the LIRR to Flushing and points beyond.


Benefit Concert for Wyandanch's Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal Church

The Bob Morris Irish Band will perform a second benefit concert for Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal Church in Wyandanch on Wednesday, February 27, at the Nag's Head Ale House in Huntington.

A free-will offering will be received to help rebuild the outreach center, which serves 1,000 needy residents each month on a nonsectarian basis in a community which is more than 75% black and nearly 20% Hispanic. Both the outreach center and rectory were devastated by an arson attack a few weeks ago.

The band’s first benefit concert, on January 23, generated more than $10,000 from a standing-room-only crowd of more than 200. Fr. Bill Brisotti, pastor of the Wyandanch parish, has been lead banjoist with the Bob Morris Irish Band for many years.

For further information, contact Bob Walsh at rdw727@hotmail.com or 631-239-5162.

Nag’s Head
396 New York Avenue
Huntington Village, NY 11743
(631) 673-6247

Our Lady of Miraculous Medal
1434 Straight Path
Wyandanch, NY 11798
(631) 643-7568

Small Business Summit 2008

Monday, February 11, 2008

8:00 am - 5:00 pm ET

Crowne Plaza Times Square Manhattan
1605 Broadway
Broadway at 49th Street
New York, New York 10019

Registration Page: http://www.eventbrite.com/event/77143739

Tomorrow is Primary Day - Vote!

We, We Can ! Si, Se Puede!

Tomorrow February 5th is Primary Day in New York. Exercise your right to vote.

Where to vote?

To find your voting booth in NYC click here.
To find your voting booth Suffolk County click here.
To find your voting booth in Nassau County click here.
To find your voting booth elsewhere in New York State click here.

Here are a few details and rules that will help make the voting process run smoothly:

Polls are in Nassau, Suffolk, New York City, Westchester, Rockland, Orange, Putnam, and Erie counties from 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Elsewhere in New York, polls are open from 12:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Anyone in line at the time the polls close is allowed to vote

If you are a first-time voter who registered by mail, bring a valid photo ID or a document that shows your name and address

If your name does not appear on the voter rolls or if you are a first-time voter and can't provide proper identification, you may vote by affidavit ballot
We, We Can ! Si, Se Puede!


Danielle's Graceful Babies

My niece Danielle--like her mother Rafaela, and her mother's mother Antonia--has that Taino ability to easily create beautiful and useful things.

I remember watching my mom, a seamstress by necessity and a sculptress by choice, easily and lovingly craft beautiful garments and art.

My sister has the same knack -- applying her gifts to designing beautiful ceramic dolls and crafts.

And her daughter Danielle, a lovely 20-something SAHM raising two little ones in very rural New York, has that same creative touch.

Danielle is the founder, chief designer, seamtress and web chief of an emerging enterprise called Graceful Babies. Graceful Babies designs durable and fun hand-crafted baby and toddler clothes and accessories at modest prices.

Check out the Graceful Babies collection at these websites: