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Archive for Jamaica Avenue Bargin Shoppers Heaven!

Who is Thomas Crater and the New York Page? In Memories of J. Michael Bloom I discussed Thomas Crater….Another person who inspired me toward my Goals!

thomas-crater.jpg 

Well,  just so you know…. I always aim to give you something interesting to read.  I found Thomas Crater when I was googling and here he is.  So,  yes there was an actual NEW YORK PAGE….AND AND REAL THOMAS CRATER THAT ALLOWED ME TO WRITE AND PRACTICE JOURNALISM. But  I had lost touch of Mr. Crater over the years.  He was a great mentor to me.  Keep well Mr. Crater  and keep up the good fight of faith and making SouthEast Jamaica beautiful!  Thanks!—-RIVEROFLIFELISAJOY!!!—-

Thomas Crater Thomas Crater “People don’t know their history, they should go out and learn about their history.”

“People don’t know their history, they should go out and learn about their history.”

Thomas Crater is the chairperson and sole board member for the Greater Jamaica Development Corporation’s (GJDC) Beautification Committee. He is always speed-walking somewhere, never without his briefcase, and he will turn any topic into a history lesson.
Greatest Achievement

Crater is known for fighting with the Long Island Railroad (LIRR) and government-run organizations about cleaning up the Downtown Jamaica area. He recently confronted the LIRR about the graffiti covering the railroad bridges and station, and according to Crater, they finally admitted it is their responsibility to clean up the defacement.Crater also started a publication called “The New York Page,” a newspaper he said he created to cover issues that everyone else is too scared to deal with. The paper prints when Crater gets around to it. He said he might print one before the November presidential elections if the paper is in high demand.Community Character

Crater has never entered a GJDC Downtown Committee meeting without a problem to discuss, and before anyone can address his concerns, he is on to the next one, without stopping to take a breath.
He avoids sitting down at meetings because he knows he is going to get riled up, so you will catch him pacing up and down the Jamaica Market Harvest Room until the meeting is over.
Crater is also known for his active involvement in the community, especially with the Greater Allen Cathedral of New York, the church he has been a member of since he moved to the area.
Most Outrageous Act

Without a car, Crater finds it hard to be punctual when it comes to getting to meetings, but no matter how late he arrives, Crater ensures that his words will be heard, and when he is on time, no one can take away his microphone.
At the February Downtown Committee meeting, Crater was asked to give an overview of what the Beautification Committee was doing. Crater stood up, moved away from the table and started interrogating board members of the GJDC. “When do you plan on starting construction on the Airport Village? There’s all this talk but no action.”When board members tried to quiet Crater down, he ignored the requests and insisted that the people of Southeast Queens deserve to know what’s going on. Although Crater did not get his questions answered, he said that he never forgets what happens at the meetings, and the subjects will come up again.Work Relationship

Crater works hand in hand with GJDC to develop Downtown Jamaica. Although he is the only member on the Beautification Committee, Crater says he stays in touch with the organization to keep them aware of his progress. The Downtown Committee also sent Crater to meet with the Borough President to discuss ways of demolishing graffiti in the borough.
Although Crater provokes the members of the Downtown Committee about the progress the organization is making with the redevelopment of Southeast Queens, he said he supports them in their efforts to rebuild the community, he just wishes there was a time frame as to when the work would be done.–Raynelle Cerica Bull

“People don’t know their history, they should go out and learn about their history.”

Thomas Crater “People don’t know their history, they should go out and learn about their history.”

“People don’t know their history, they should go out and learn about their history.”

Thomas Crater is the chairperson and sole board member for the Greater Jamaica Development Corporation’s (GJDC) Beautification Committee. He is always speed-walking somewhere, never without his briefcase, and he will turn any topic into a history lesson.
Greatest Achievement

Crater is known for fighting with the Long Island Railroad (LIRR) and government-run organizations about cleaning up the Downtown Jamaica area. He recently confronted the LIRR about the graffiti covering the railroad bridges and station, and according to Crater, they finally admitted it is their responsibility to clean up the defacement.Crater also started a publication called “The New York Page,” a newspaper he said he created to cover issues that everyone else is too scared to deal with. The paper prints when Crater gets around to it. He said he might print one before the November presidential elections if the paper is in high demand.
Community Character

Crater has never entered a GJDC Downtown Committee meeting without a problem to discuss, and before anyone can address his concerns, he is on to the next one, without stopping to take a breath.
He avoids sitting down at meetings because he knows he is going to get riled up, so you will catch him pacing up and down the Jamaica Market Harvest Room until the meeting is over.
Crater is also known for his active involvement in the community, especially with the Greater Allen Cathedral of New York, the church he has been a member of since he moved to the area.
Most Outrageous Act

Without a car, Crater finds it hard to be punctual when it comes to getting to meetings, but no matter how late he arrives, Crater ensures that his words will be heard, and when he is on time, no one can take away his microphone.
At the February Downtown Committee meeting, Crater was asked to give an overview of what the Beautification Committee was doing. Crater stood up, moved away from the table and started interrogating board members of the GJDC. “When do you plan on starting construction on the Airport Village? There’s all this talk but no action.”When board members tried to quiet Crater down, he ignored the requests and insisted that the people of Southeast Queens deserve to know what’s going on. Although Crater did not get his questions answered, he said that he never forgets what happens at the meetings, and the subjects will come up again.Work Relationship

Crater works hand in hand with GJDC to develop Downtown Jamaica. Although he is the only member on the Beautification Committee, Crater says he stays in touch with the organization to keep them aware of his progress. The Downtown Committee also sent Crater to meet with the Borough President to discuss ways of demolishing graffiti in the borough.
Although Crater provokes the members of the Downtown Committee about the progress the organization is making with the redevelopment of Southeast Queens, he said he supports them in their efforts to rebuild the community, he just wishes there was a time frame as to when the work would be done.–Raynelle Cerica Bull

“People don’t know their history, they should go out and learn about their history.”


Thomas Crater is the chairperson and sole board member for the Greater Jamaica Development Corporation’s (GJDC) Beautification Committee. He is always speed-walking somewhere, never without his briefcase, and he will turn any topic into a history lesson.
Greatest Achievement

Crater is known for fighting with the Long Island Railroad (LIRR) and government-run organizations about cleaning up the Downtown Jamaica area. He recently confronted the LIRR about the graffiti covering the railroad bridges and station, and according to Crater, they finally admitted it is their responsibility to clean up the defacement.Crater also started a publication called “The New York Page,” a newspaper he said he created to cover issues that everyone else is too scared to deal with. The paper prints when Crater gets around to it. He said he might print one before the November presidential elections if the paper is in high demand.
Community Character

Crater has never entered a GJDC Downtown Committee meeting without a problem to discuss, and before anyone can address his concerns, he is on to the next one, without stopping to take a breath.
He avoids sitting down at meetings because he knows he is going to get riled up, so you will catch him pacing up and down the Jamaica Market Harvest Room until the meeting is over.
Crater is also known for his active involvement in the community, especially with the Greater Allen Cathedral of New York, the church he has been a member of since he moved to the area.
Most Outrageous Act

Without a car, Crater finds it hard to be punctual when it comes to getting to meetings, but no matter how late he arrives, Crater ensures that his words will be heard, and when he is on time, no one can take away his microphone.
At the February Downtown Committee meeting, Crater was asked to give an overview of what the Beautification Committee was doing. Crater stood up, moved away from the table and started interrogating board members of the GJDC. “When do you plan on starting construction on the Airport Village? There’s all this talk but no action.”When board members tried to quiet Crater down, he ignored the requests and insisted that the people of Southeast Queens deserve to know what’s going on. Although Crater did not get his questions answered, he said that he never forgets what happens at the meetings, and the subjects will come up again.Work Relationship

Crater works hand in hand with GJDC to develop Downtown Jamaica. Although he is the only member on the Beautification Committee, Crater says he stays in touch with the organization to keep them aware of his progress. The Downtown Committee also sent Crater to meet with the Borough President to discuss ways of demolishing graffiti in the borough.
Although Crater provokes the members of the Downtown Committee about the progress the organization is making with the redevelopment of Southeast Queens, he said he supports them in their efforts to rebuild the community, he just wishes there was a time frame as to when the work would be done.–Raynelle Cerica Bull
A word from Riveroflifelisajoy!—-So there you have it!  Still going strong in his own way.  I hope that all continues to go well for Mr. Crater.  He assisted a young college student to understand writing and the power of the ink on paper!  Thank you again.  Mr.  Crater.  Two very powerful people that I had met before the age of  thirty!  Two people who were not afraid to step out from their comfort zone and be the person they felt lead and drawn to be.  Be lead by your dreams and push the limits of what feels safe.  Yes,  J. Michael Bloom  Talent Agent (founder/CEO of the J. Michael Bloom and Associates), who has passed on leaving those of us fortunate to have known him or known of him to remember his great contributions to budding young and talented artists,  and Thomas Crater….News Paper Founder,  and CEO Entreprenauer of the SouthEast Queens Community who has been a mover and a shaker in the community WITHOUT  becoming a politician!  Yes,  I am still aiming to achieve my goals,  and I have two non-related people to which I can say thankfor your being who you are and were.  Thank   you for treating me with respect, and mentoring me.  I truly appreciate it to this very day!

——RiVEROFLIFELISAJOY! 

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HOLIDAY SHOPPING! DO YOU WANT REAL BLING BLING OR THE FAKE DING DING?!!! I CAN TELL YOU WHERE TO GET THE DING! DING!

foliage.jpg December 27 2007 update____I was able to purchase housecoats, and silky rayon nigthies for 3.99 a piece! 

 I got all of this for $67.00! 


I even purchased 5 SETS OF Queen Size Sheet sets on Jamaica Avenue in a HouseWares store next to Modells for $3.99 also! 

 Hurry up and get there.  All different styles and colors.  My mother loved hers!  It was used on the full size bed. 

 I always buy a size up to make up for any type of shrinage! 

 The colors are clear and the designs are crisp! 

 I got my son some great thermal design shirts for $10.00 in Modells too!

  I really saved loads of money on Jamacia Avenue for this holiday Shopping.

  I really buy things that the family needs…never the pricey jewelry!  The house wares also had  3 large bath towels for $10.00.

   I brought five sets of sheets and I am going back for more!!! 

AT  $3.99 how can you go wrong?  I am so excited….I love Valley Stream….but you will never get prices that cheap on houseware items….I know….I am a window shopper for life!  

 Till next up date!  RIVEROFLIFELISAJOY!

I was on Jamaica Avenue the other day( I usually go to Green Acres Mall) but I had some business to take care of regarding my utility bill.  But as I was walking I noticed alot of things on sale that were very cheep. 

 Skirts,  dresses,  jeans,  sweaters,  pajamas,  table  clothes,  housewares,  and suitcases galore!  I love the flea market,  but suddenly Jamaica Avenue was starting to look quite appealing! 

I have various reasons why I did not shop Jamaica Avenue but to be honest,  the area has turned over a new leaf!  It has government buildings,  city buildings,  the Long Island Rail Road,  the Kennedy Airport Tram and a whole host of stores from furniture, baby needs,  and concept stores too. 

 Of course the well known slightly larger than a boutique stores like the “Avenue” for large women,  and a food court for food lovers hides down a quiet side street around the corner for White Castles.  My new Hair Dresser is down a quiet street off of Jamaica Avenue also. 

But my purpose of this rit–is to discuss the “jewlery stores.”  I did see a ZALES Jewlery Store on Jamaica Avenue!  I was shocked! 

 Look,  I do not buy jewlery, because I have never had the desire to spend my rent,  utility bill,  car insurance payment,  or grocery money on a tennis braclet, or even a gold plated  14K gold necklace.

  I believe that such purchases are for those who have it ALL!!  Don’t get me wrong,  I know you can put things on “layaway”–  but for me….something always comes up that interferes with my making payments on that layaway and then I get the phone call or letter that informs me that I am about to lose that $100.00 that I put down on that item.

  Two times that happened to me in Green Acres Mall with  jewlery store.  All I wanted was a GOOD watch….an adult watch for a lady,  for a church going lady,  for a mommy who works hard to care for her family, blah, blah,  blah,—of  course I had to talk myself into this investment—because I always feel guilty if I buy something for myself! 

  –So, anyway,  I purchased this Citizen watch for only $120.00! (It was on sale from $170.00) That was a lot of money for my limited funds.

  But I had convinced myself that I deserved it.  So I put down my deposit and then I fell behind on the payments because of  family and home economic problems. 

 I finally picked up my watch with the positive inspirational statements from the sales clerk, on how pretty it looked on my rather chubby brown arm!  I admired it and stared at it so hard,  ( because no one ever purchased any expensive watch or jewlery for me in my entire life!) 

 I thought that I had finally grown up at my early years of 42!  How sad,  isn’t it? —I  wore my watch with pride at work

  I received the usual compliments and then one day, getting   into my car I noticed that my little friend was missing from its perch on my chubby brown wrist.

  It was fall weather and I had not raked the leaves infront of my house. 

 I kicked, and kicked until the yard looked worse then ever!  I was so very lazy about raking leaves! 

 My son came out of the house and must have thought I was reliving my childhood!  I was swinging my arms and kicking the leaves frantically! 

  I almost fell on the ground because of this non sense!  I grew exhausted from my wasted efforts. 

 I could not find my watch….my beautiful,  gold tone, link watch!  I did notice that the clasp had become loose.  But it was not that severe to me. 

However,  after that final day with my friend,  my dearly departed grown up lady, church going lady,  hard working mommy Citizen Watch,  almost seven years ago….I have not laid another deposit on any jewlery! 

 So I chose to purchase cheap $10.00 funny looking watches that I don’t even take a second glance at once they are on my cubby brown arm!  Just tell me that time is all I care about. 

 No more attempts at Bling Blining it!  So if you want to Ding,  Dinging it with me….go to Jamaica Avenue….there are plenty of shops that offer such items that are not pricey and  will not break your heart if they have an untimely departure from your neck,  wrist, finger, or ankle! 

And for those who can afford the pricey….go to that Zales! 

I also found a great Army color design sweat suit for my son!  It only cost $15.00!  It was great!  My son is tall but skinny! 

 He is athletic in build so he can wear anything!  I found those “mink” blankets for the bed—also those beautiful over the top bed spreads with matching bed skirt, the whole shabang for $25.00 to $30.00. 

 There were “heavy comforters”  for sale for $14.00  in the various stores ( one in particular called ALEXIS) as I walked down Jamaica Avenue! 

I thought to myself  that if I had atleast two to three hundred dollars I could purchase several good gifts for my family and a few friends! 

So I got so excited.  I can’t wait to get back to that street.  I will park car and stop being so lazy to walk.  I will pick up the not so Macy’s,  not so JCPenny,  not so Marshalls items and give my little family something to unwrap under the Christmas Tree.

  I do not have a credit card ….so I cannot afford the big name stores!  I only can buy cash!  I love Macy’s women’s department! 

But do you know that women who wear a size 22 or above cannot buy a coat in Macys for less than $200.00?  I saw a FAKE….FAKE….Lamb Skin Coat for $400.00!!! 

What did they put in that thing?  Did they sew it with Gold thread?  It is fake lamb skin!  Who is wearing size 22 and can afford a $400.00 coat? 

 What makes it worse is that the stupid coat will never be at a price I can afford.  Even if they lower it to $200.00 —I have a car insurance that is $218.00 every month!

 I already told you that I feel guilty to purchase anything pricey for myself.  I will spend good money in Marshalls for my son….but for myself,  unless I am going out to perform (which I will be  singing next week,  to start off this holiday season)  I do not buy beautiful clothes for myself.

  I buy for my son first and myself last!  I feel joy when I see the happy look on my child’s face when I give him something that he truly wanted or enjoyed for Christmas! 

So if you do not have alot of money,  but want to give nice gifts that look good too….try Jamaica Avenue in Queens New York!  Oh, and there is a movie theatre there too.  The buses, and trains are all central to that location. 

Happy Holidays,  and Good Bargin Hunting!!!  And look,  it is the thought that counts!  So pick up some Ding,  Ding if you cannot afford the expensive stores like Macys and JCPenny! 

 Just  get good boxes,  good wrapping paper and pretty bows!  —Okay,  Okay,  for those of you that must have the Bling,  Bling,  run to T.J. Maxx,  Marshalls,  and Fashions for Less in Valley Stream.  Also check those stores for the good clearance items. 

 You might be surpised at what you find!  You might like the sales. 

Another good gift giving  item I like is the fruit baskets!  I used to make them myself.  I liked do that in my mothers old neighborhood! 

 Certain elderly neighbors who were not family,  just community friends for years—I would make up a basket of brownies, and cupcakes, and fruit!  They would love it!  I remember  an elederly lady named Granny that used to babysit me for years. 

I would go to the house with my son when he was six or seven and have him learn the value of “giving to the less fortunate and the lonely during the holidays!  Granny looked forward to my little holiday baskets. 

 I enjoyed the look of happiness on her face, and the look of quiet shock and affection on my sons little face when Granny would reach down and give him a kiss on his forehead and “thank  him” for giving her such a lovely gift for Christmas. 

 She would then invite us inside and we would sit and talk while my son would play with her grandchildren.

  The holidays can be beautiful if you keep the real meaning for the season in your gift giving!  I will write more if I find more bargins!

riveroflifelisajoy!