North Fork

Experience Gifts are the Answer (in case you were wondering)

IMG_1401It’s three days before Christmas and I haven’t gotten my parents a thing. Nope, nothing. What kind of nonsense is this? Well, to be fair, it’s a group gift from all of us, and while there isn’t actually any dissent, there isn’t a lot of decision making going on either. Am I at the mall? Decidedly no (even though I hear from Annmarie Weir Seldon of Trendy Mommies that there are good deals for the taking).

Are you thinking what I’m thinking? That nothing says ‘Happy Holidays’ like a gift card? Well, it can be true and while I long resisted the gift card, I’ve come to see it in a new way. Those hard to buy for folks (like my parents) would love a gift certificate to a long-standing favorite restaurant or as-yet-untried place – thus the experience gift.


What to get? Well, you can guess but it’s nice if you have a little working knowledge of your gift-ee. Country music or classical? Show tunes or not so much? Are they into kitchen or tech gadgets? Are they bookish? Museum or movie buffs? Are they foodies? If so the world is definitely your oyster.

Do they like day-trips or weekends away? Explore or stay close to home? All of the above? Then you have it made.

Not that I would be unhappy with a gift card to Starbucks, but it is nice if the gift is a bit more personal. So, if you know if your gift-ee likes day-trips or overnights, spa treatments or dIMG_1150ays lounging by the pool, you have a good start. Hotel gift stays are a great group idea for parents and grandparents, a mother-daughter(s) spa weekend or a weekend away for your family – upgrade that Staycation!

Recently I visited the John Carver Inn in Plymouth as part of a Blogger Day of Fun and Beauty (okay, I made the title up but I call it like I see it). First, we had a tour of this lovely inn and then gathered in the Beach Plum Spa. The well-named Relaxation Room was now our home base, with super comfortable seats, soft lighting and fresh fruit flavored water, and snacks (really nice snacks). The attention to detail is outstanding, from the constellation ceiling (sorry – no pics) to the fully appointed beautiful locker rooms, and the comfortable and calming treatment rooms.  And there is a fun pool is a perfect place to take the kids, and while (ahem) someone is hanging out poolside or in the hot tub, someone else can go get a terrific spa treatment at the award-winning Beach Plum Spa.



The staff is wonderful, professional and attentive, extremely well-trained, and all personally vetted by the owner of the hotel, the lovely and welcoming Deb Catania. My technician and I chatted about skin care during the treatment, because I am super curious and have sensitive skin, and she not only described each step and product in great detail but she also gave me some great make-at-home skin care treatments.

Instagram Image from Leah’s Life: Pearls and Oysters Beach Plum Spa




From Masshole Mommy’s Post: The Beach Plum Spa and WaterFire Tavern at The John Carver Inn in Plymouth are a Winning Combo! Photo Credit
From Masshole Mommy’s Post: The Beach Plum Spa and WaterFire Tavern at The John Carver Inn in Plymouth are a Winning Combo!




The fantastic Beach Plum Spa is open to the public (no need to be a guest of the hotel to book an appointment), and is open seven days a week, year round. And there are two other locations of this spa in the John Carver Inn’s sister hotels, the Dan’l Webster Inn in Sandwich and the Cape Codder Resort in Hyannis. Check out this local gem, and, if you’re a sweetheart, get your parents a gift certificate.

Disclaimer: I received a spa facial in order to be able to review the spa services. All opinions are, and ever will be, my own.





In a New York State of Mind

In a New York State of Mind

I have been traveling a bit of late – mostly to New York – both the city and Long Island. Both trips were fun and I have so much to share about each of them but for now (mostly because it’s late and it’s all I can manage), I’ll share some pics. Posts to follow.

Yes, I did all of that, and more, in one day! Sponsored by The Cross Sound Ferry. Fantastic day trip, can’t wait to go back to explore this lovely area. Wonderful food and wine, friendly and kind people, gorgeous surroundings and so many interesting things to do and see – I know they have cute shops – I saved them for my next visit! This is just my photo post – I promise I’ll fill you in the full story soon. A huge thank you to all of the wonderful places we visited!

For information on the above – here are the links to their sites:

Cross Sound Ferry

Vintage Tours with Jo-Ann Perry

Kontokosta Winery

Jamesport Vineyard

NoFo Lunchbox

Harbes Family Farm & Vineyard

The Candyman

Catapano Dairy Farm

LI Weekends

East End Seaport Museum and Marine Foundation

Greenport Carousel

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