My RI Life: Meet Massage Therapist Jeanne Batting

I've lived in Rhode Island since I was 5 years old. Prior to that I lived in Foxboro, MA, having been born in Norwood, MA. I spent most of my adolescent and adult life working at my father's real estate appraisal business, both in the office and in the field, once I'd attained my appraiser's license. When the economy collapsed, I held on for a few years, but knew it was time to reconsider my professional ambitions. For reasons I can't even clearly articulate myself, it occurred to me that massage therapy was a path I wanted to follow. Call it empathy, call it intuition, soon I was enrolled in classes at the Lincoln Technical Institute to become a licensed LMT.

Soon after graduating (and making the Dean's List 3 times!), I was hired at Massage Envy at their new franchise location in Lincoln, RI. In less than a year, I was building up a regular clientele. I had found something I was really good at! Not wanting to limit myself, I teamed up with Deb Manera Cunha, proprietor of Essence Yoga, who envisioned the concept of offering massage as an enhancement to her yoga studio. The business is located in historic Pawtuxet Village in a building that was once a theater; my massage studio is actually the old dressing room area. I focus on deep tissue, reflexology, Swedish massage but customize my approach to each person's needs. The studio has a cozy, welcoming atmosphere which I feel is integral to a positive massage experience. At times it might hurt a bit, but at least you'll be cozy!

I have been married to my husband for 19 years with two beautiful daughters to show for our sins. We met at the Rocket, a night club in Providence, which then became Club Babyhead, then Club Hell. At the time I was singing in a band called Spindle Shanks while my husband was a vocalist for the punk/metal outfit Strange Flesh. After a few false starts, we've been going strong ever since.

We presently reside in Scituate and don't get out like we used to, but when a sitter can be procured, we like to hit either the Scurvy Dog or Nolan's Pub, both in Providence, for the casual atmosphere yet expansive drink options. Closer to home, the Village Tavern on Danielson Pike is unrivaled for pub-fare and pints. Their Bentley Burger is as good a burger as you will get anywhere in our solar system. But our favorite night out is a couple of steamed lobsters and a budget bottle of shiraz picnic at Beavertail State Park to catch a sunset, watch some bunnies, and maybe spy a deer or two...or three.


Photo Credits: All pics courtesy of Jeanne Batting, except for the Pawtuxet Village exteriors.

Behind The Seams With A Designer Handbag Collector

Recently, I got an invite to The Newport Antiques Show that included a tip about a new addition to their lineup - a collector/dealer who specializes in vintage designer handbags. Now, antiques are nice and all, but say something (anything really) about designer handbags and I am so there. With bells on!

Flash forward to yesterday, when we set our Maps App (Been meaning to add Waze to my phone btw. I hear it's legit life changing.) to St. Georges' School in Middletown where The Antiques Show, in its 10th year, was being held. First, before I get to the bags and the related deets, let me give a shout out to Russell Morin Catering, the peeps running The Show's Cafe. Truly, madly, deeply loved the ice coffee they had to offer and that's saying a whole lot because I usually drink my coffee hot regardless of the temps or the time of year. Now, back to those bags...It didn't take us long before we found the booth with Only Authentics, owner/proprietor Virgil Rogers, and one of the most exquisite and envy inducing displays of Chanel and Hermes outside of Worth, Michigan or 5th Ave. I mean, seriously. 

Mr. Rogers and his associate were kind enough to share a few of their fav pieces with us, including several Chanel bags made in extremely limited numbers strictly for the runway, a coveted croc Hermes Birkin, and another Hermes bag that doubles as a jewelry box. (Photos above.) It was like shopping your best friend's closet - if your BFF has spent the last 30 years collecting chic statement bags from the world's premiere luxury brands. Also, there was a standout Hermes black leather belt with an engraved H buckle that caught my eye. (I spy with my little eye HERMES dammit!) Maybe you know about the waiting list to purchase a Birkin (Many thanks to the Sex & The City writers in Season 4 for chronicling Samantha's quest for a Birkin.), but did you also know that there's one for their belts and buckles? YUP. (Not sure if I saw that in Vogue or Vanity Fair, but it has stayed with me.)

The final 411? Even though The Newport Antiques Show has wrapped, you can still buy a bag from Mr. Rogers because he'll be in the Ocean State a few more days. Click on over to his site to contact him directly or maybe just to peruse the selection of gorgeous handbags and accessories and create a wish list or just daydream about luxe life - Hey, you're entitled! 

Ciao for Now,

Patty J


Photo Credits: All photos by 


5 Ways To Stress Less & Make Your Next Big Move A Success

At twenty, I moved halfway across the country and a thousand miles away from almost everyone I knew. Having lived exclusively in the west up until that point, coming here was a culture shock. Highways are thinner, states are closer together, and apartments are uniquely different.

Culture shock wore off pretty quickly for me, but there are still things I’m learning about moving within the Ocean State. Recently I moved from a two bedroom with a thousand square feet in a split family home. My former landlord allowed the apartment to go into foreclosure, but hey, I needed to downgrade anyway, right? Now I'm in a more modern, industrial style loft. Here are a few things I have learned over the years and with this most current move.

Right For You. Here’s some sound advice - never make anything final! If you get caught up looking for your white picket fence. Where you think you will find the love of your life, get married, have 2.5 kids, a dog, a cat, a hamster, pick the curtains that will define you as a human, sofas that will be the most comfortable ever, rugs that are un-stainable, a fireplace, a yard with grass that shimmers, a farmer’s market across the street, high ranking schools around every corner… Okay, you get the point. Look, renting, or even owning, is not building your dream house. If you pigeonhole yourself into something perfect, you’ll miss something right. Look at renting apartments/houses backwards, shop for what there is, not what you want. Because if you don’t, you may end up disappointed

The Search. Zillow,, and Craigslist are all fine resources when moving. Although it seems like CL is slowly fading away from daily use. And while all of these sites/apps can help you find a new place to live, I have found that around here your best bet is the old fashion way. Finding a “For Rent” sign stabbed into someone’s lawn. Landlord’s do not exactly have a hard time renting apartments in Providence. Maybe the story is different in more rural areas. But I have found several apartments that were never even listed on Craigslist and even more that didn’t make it onto Zillow or one of the bigger sites. Because they don’t have to, space is growing more and more scarce in the cities (and Rhode Island is not that big to begin with). Here’s a tip - use the other sites to research the areas you’re interested in and then, take a drive or walk around and see what you can find. This will also give you a better understanding of the neighborhood.

Rhode Island. If you were born and raised in Little Rhody, you know what’s what. But if you’re moving from out of state, you’re going to hear and read things about certain areas of RI. It’s not that they are all wrong, but most of what you’ll read describing the “bad areas” is misleading. I saw more break-ins on the East Side during the two years I lived there than in the seven years I’ve lived in Pawtucket. Also, if you’re from out of town, there are areas that have more to do within walking distance than others. But look, don’t listen solely to comments on Yelp crying about how they had to drive five minutes into Providence to enjoy life. Get on Google Maps and search for what you like to do. Theatre, dancing, dining, whatever. Check it out and see how far you are okay with walking/driving to get there. Also, consider the price point. The exact same apartment in Providence is between $200 and $500 cheaper two streets over in Pawtucket for example. So, if you’re okay with saving money but having to Uber down for Waterfire, that’s important info to have.

Details. Typically I play it pretty fast and loose. I don’t take a ton of notes in my personal life and I’m *somewhat* disorganized. DON’T BE LIKE ME! If you’re truly shopping the market and plan on seeing more than two apartments, grab a spiral bound notebook. Seriously, it doesn’t matter how good you think you are, if you are looking at multiple places, write out as many questions as you can and ask each landlord or property manager you talk to. Ask about trivial things because once you move in, they won’t seem so trivial. Pets, are they allowed and is there a specific area to let them do their business? Fees, ask for any and all fees because while most landlords are decent humans, occasionally you’ll find the opposite. Laundry, where is it and how many machines are there, are they coin op or is there a money card? Utilities, do you know roughly how much the usage and bill is? Leaks, ask if there have been any recent roof or pipe leaks. Break-ins, this falls into knowing your neighborhood. Here’s the deal, the landlord has to disclose whatever you ask, otherwise they’re signing you onto a lease under false pretenses. At the very least, if anything does happen down the line, you can use this as fodder in any kind of legal situation.

You’re in! So you’re finally in, nice job adulting. Now before you move ANYTHING in, walk through and take a pictures of any damages you see. Every. Little. Thing. If you can date stamp it, all the better. (Nowadays most digital pictures have that information in their file anyway.) Send a polite email to your landlord saying you did a walk through and found “x”, here are the pictures. This way you won't get blamed for the previous tenant’s destructive habits. This could also help you get your security deposit back when you move out.

Moving to a slightly smaller space was one of the best things I’ve ever done. (It) Saves money and makes you really look at your life and decide what matters most to you. Good luck if you’re reading this and embarking upon your next big move.




More About Colin Carlton

Colin is the author of the “Grayfellow” series. For more info about his books and other projects, check out Find him also on Facebook @colincarltonofficial and Twitter/Instagram @colincarlton.

Photo Credits: All photos courtesy of Colin Carlton