Archive | December 2010

Snow Storm

I don’t think it’s a surprise to anyone that knows me that I absolutely LOVE snow! So you can probably imagine my excitement when suddenly yesterday we were put in a blizzard warning expecting up to 20 inches of snow from this morning through tomorrow.
Mind you, this is after having nothing other than flurries for a few minutes at most all season long so far. This time, the snow started sticking right away too!
Here are a few pictures from today thus far:
This first picture is from earlier this morning soon after the snow started.

I’m sure I’ll update if when I take more pictures!

Updated 7:14 PM (taken from my phone):

Updated 9:17 PM:

14 inches as of 9:15 PM!

Here’s the morning after update with pictures of the snow storm:

behind that fence is our pool; the little bit of red you see is our red brick bench that runs the length of our backyard.

Around 12:30 PM:

We ended up with 22.5+ inches of snow! I’m not sure exactly how much, but 22.5 inches was the number at 1 A.M. and it still snowed after that.


 P.S. Don’t forget to leave me a comment below on your thoughts! As always, I’d love to hear from you.

Levant

Food: 3.5
Staff: 3.5
Atmosphere: 4
Overall: 3.5

I went with a bunch of girls, and so got to ‘sample’ a few different dishes. I can honestly say I only liked what I ordered. I got the Chicken Kabab and it was juicy and delicious. I found a few of the other dishes to be on the dry and bland side (like the chicken shawarma).

Staff — Seemed friendly, but I guess because it’s a new restaurant and they aren’t very busy yet (we were the only ones there)… they pretty much watched us eat. Did.not.appreciate.that.at.ALL.

The place is decorated nicely though, which was a major plus! It’s new so it was clean and welcoming.

A major downer — would not let us split the check in terms of giving them separate credit cards. Who doesn’t do that? We either had to pay cash or put it all on one card… so it would be a hassle for someone to go there with a group of friends. I hope they change that soon.

Chicken Kabab


P.S. Don’t forget to leave me a comment below on your thoughts! As always, I’d love to hear from you.

Bloggerversary

When I started blogging three years ago, I wasn’t sure how much (or how often) I would actually end up blogging, how consistent I would be, or whether it would end up being just another one of those short lived things.

But looking back and seeing the 300 posts I’ve written in 3 years, I am quite happy (and surprised) that I’ve stuck with it.

Writing has always been a way for me to get things out of my system, and it’s been a great way to keep track of what’s going on in my life and around me. From time to time, it’s neat to go back and reflect on what I had written about at any given time… which was a huge part of why I started blogging in the first place.

I wonder what the next three years will bring…

Do you blog? What’s your main reason for blogging?


P.S. Don’t forget to leave me a comment below on your thoughts! As always, I’d love to hear from you.

Observations at a Hospital/Doctor’s Office (Part Two)

This is part two of the post from here on the following questions:
You know what I’ll never understand?
  1. Why patients with heart related symptoms are made to wait an hour (plus) in the waiting room in the emergency room.
  2. Why patients on a “cardiac diet” are fed cheese sandwiches, lasagna, and other such things in hospitals.
  3. Why a cardiologists’ office serves pizza (ESPECIALLY after a stress test).
  4. Why the nurses and technicians in hospitals wake the patients up every 2-4 hours to take their blood pressure, etc.
  5. Why the nurses and technicians are so incredibly loud in the middle of the night.

You can read part one about statements one and two by clicking here.

Statement Three: Why a cardiologists’ office serves pizza (ESPECIALLY after a stress test).
This goes along with my previous statement, statement two, as it also deals with the quality of food (or lack thereof).
After my dad’s heart attack in 2005, he has had regular appointments with the cardiologist of course and has had annual stress tests. Each year after coming back his stress test, he would tell us that they were serving pizza and soda for the patients and their families (fortunately he would choose not to eat that).It’s so absurd that it is almost funny. Here we are at a cardiologists’ office and they are serving oily pizza to a bunch of heart patients.Apparently they have stopped serving food altogether– so I’m not even sure it was because they realized they were serving unhealthy food or if it was just because

Statement Four: Why the nurses and technicians in hospitals wake the patients up every 2-4 hours to take their blood pressure, etc.

Fortunately I’ve never been hospitalized, but I’ve stayed plenty of times with my mom or dad. That said, I probably know my local hospital backwards and forward. But that’s not the point; the point is that I don’t get why they do certain things at hospitals (or the way they do them).

While it’s annoying when they check the patients’ temperature, blood pressure, and pulse rate every couple of hours while you are awake, I understand that they have to do that. I get it. What I don’t get it is WHY they wake up patients to do it when they are sleeping. I don’t think that by not checking for several hours it would be that big of a deal in MOST cases. OF COURSE they are some circumstances where I’m sure it is necessary to check every two hours on the dot– but it’s not all of the time!

Most patients are probably already annoyed and not getting sleep just because they are in the hospital, so a few sound hours of sleep is probably necessary for them. I think my blood pressure would rise every time they woke me up at night ;)… just saying.

Once or twice, I remember, the technician coming into the room and once they acknowledge that the patient (my mom or dad) is sleeping, they just tell me they’ll come back later when the patient is awake. But that rarely happens.

You know what I find the funniest during all of this? When the nurse or technician asks the patient bright and early in the morning how they slept? How do you think they slept? You didn’t let them sleep! 

I’m going to throw in a statement five in here just because I can 🙂

Statement Five:  Why the nurses and technicians are so incredibly loud in the middle of the night.

I’m not sure what the deal is with this one, but it sure is annoying.

I can never sleep in hospitals anyways, so I’m usually up all night… which is probably why I noticed all these little things.

I don’t remember if I’ve noticed this happen before, but this past time – a nurse and technician kept talking really loud (essentially yelling to one another) right outside the rooms. If it was for something related to the patients, that they needed help, or something to the likes – it would be more than understandable. But no, instead they were laughing and joking. IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT!

Several times, my dad woke up from their loud voices. Said nurse and technician even came into our room and continued to do so and I probably gave them the most annoyed look possible because that was when it stopped fortunately.

Have you observed or heard about other similar things happening at hospitals and/or doctors’ offices that you found absurd?

Updated 12.17.2010: I was quite surprised to find this question in a survey online at http://www.hospitalcompare.hhs.gov because that indicates that it is a consistent problem, not something that happens on a rare occasion. For the category, ‘Patients who reported that the area around their room was “Always” quiet at night.’ — only 52% of the people who answered the survey in relation to the hospital we were at. That’s pretty low. Worse, the number was lower for the other hospitals in our area!

P.S. Don’t forget to leave me a comment below on your thoughts! As always, I’d love to hear from you.

Joke

I love (funny) jokes, and the one below is probably one of the funniest I’ve read or heard in a while:

Real Ad: Ad seen in the The New York Times…
FOR SALE BY OWNER
Complete set of Encyclopedia Britannica. 45 volumes. Excellent
condition.
$1,000.00 or best offer. No longer needed. Got married last weekend.
Wife knows everything.

P.S. Don’t forget to leave me a comment below on your thoughts! As always, I’d love to hear from you.

Obama’s Children’s Book

The youngest person in my house is 22 (me!), so I am sure many would be surprised if they heard that we recently bought a children’s book.

Well, it wasn’t just any children’s book – it was Barack Obama’s “Of Thee I Sing: A Letter to My Daughters“:

I gotta admit, the book is pretty good – and I’m not just saying that because I’m a supporter of him.

All politics aside the story line is good, as is the moral of the story. It essentially introduces various famous Americans (13 of them) with various traits/characteristics that they are known for (and each introduction starts in the form of a “Have I told you…?” question). The core of the story is, of course, that America is made up of a diverse group of people from all sorts of backgrounds who all bring something different to the table and each one is as important as the other.

By the way, a 100% of the profits are being donated to a charity.

Have you read it? What did you think of it?

P.S. Don’t forget to leave me a comment below on your thoughts! As always, I’d love to hear from you.

Observations at a Hospital/Doctor’s Office (Part One)

You know what I’ll never understand?

  1. Why patients with heart related symptoms are made to wait an hour (plus) in the waiting room in the emergency room.
  2. Why patients on a “cardiac diet” are fed cheese sandwiches, lasagna, and other such things in hospitals.
  3. Why a cardiologists’ office serves pizza (ESPECIALLY after a stress test).
  4. Why the nurses and technicians in hospitals wake the patients up every 2-4 hours to take their blood pressure, etc.

I’ll expand further on each of the above statements, but don’t you find each of them absolutely ridiculous and hypocritical?

Statement One: Why patients with heart related symptoms are made to wait an hour (plus) in the waiting room in the emergency room.

This past Tuesday my dad went to the emergency room because he felt tightness in his chest (he had a heart attack in 2005 so of course it was a concern for all of us). We sat in the waiting room for atleast an hour and a half (probably even more) before we were finally taken back into the emergency room. Another 30+ minutes later, he was finally seen by a doctor.

A chest x-ray, blood test, and 2 EKG’s later to see if it was indeed heart related we were told that the tests would need to be done several times (one at about each eight hour interval) because just one or two times would be inconclusive. If that’s the case, it brings me back to my original question of WHY they take so long in the first place.

I would assume, and rightfully so I think, that if the symptoms indicate that the problem is heart related, immediate action would be taken. I had always assumed that the emergency room was ordered based on the urgency of the situations, but apparently not based on what I saw.

Not surprisingly, my dad was hospitalized — for two days.

This wasn’t the first time, unfortunately, we had to to wait way too long for something that could have potentially been serious (but thankfully was not) — it happened to my mom in 2008 as well.

Statement Two: Why patients on a “cardiac diet” are fed cheese sandwiches, lasagna, and other such things in hospitals.

I’ve noticed this happen before as well, but at the same as I talk about above — I went to ask the nurse if my dad could have something to eat since he hadn’t had anything to eat for several hours (he had came straight from work to the hospital). The nurse told me he would ask my dad’s doctor and let me know. Can you imagine how surprised I was when the technician came back sometime later and told us that my dad was being put on a cardiac diet for now and asked if a cheese sandwich would be okay when we told him he could eat halal food (kosher-like) or vegetarian.

What part of a sandwich with two cheese slices fits into a cardiac diet? How does that even make sense?

The next day he had vegetarian lasagna (again with lots of cheese) for lunch. Oh, and with each meal came a roll with BUTTER. I can’t recall exactly what else he ate during his hospital stay, but a lot of them sure were questionable. When did a cardiac diet come to mean that only the salt quantity needs to be controlled?

Part Two to come soon.  Update: You can read Part Two by clicking here.

P.S. Don’t forget to leave me a comment below on your thoughts! As always, I’d love to hear from you.

Kabab Paradise

Food: 5
Staff: 4.5
Atmosphere: 3.5
Overall: 4.5

I’ve had several things from here and have enjoyed them all.

My favorite is the Chicken Tikka Sandwich with fries. Their chicken wings are delicious, their hummus is great. I was hesitant yet anxious to try their fried chicken and that was great as well! I love fried chicken, but usually most places don’t made it so great. Oh, and their lamb chops are delicious too — and I’m not even a meat fan usually! Their gyros are great — portion is great for two people to share in my opinion — as are all of their entrees.

This place has become a favorite for my family very fast.

It’s a popular place here and is usually packed, but we can usually find a table. We live nearby though, so taking it to go is not a problem either.

It’s closed on Mondays though! On more than a few occasions we have wanted to go or have actually driven there to then be reminded it is closed. 🙁


P.S. Don’t forget to leave me a comment below on your thoughts! As always, I’d love to hear from you.

Elizabeth Edwards

Elizabeth Edwards, has died at the age of 61 after a six year long battle with breast cancer. Just yesterday, news broke that her doctors had informed her last week that further treatment would be “unproductive” and that she had stopped treatment.

You always pray and hope for the best, but unfortunately in life you need to prepare for the worst.

Throughout everything Elizabeth Edwards has been through (losing her 16 year old son Wade in a car accident, battling cancer [then going into remission, then finding out the cancer is back — and worse that it is spreading], and of course the infamous admission by John Edwards that he had an affair and fathered a child), she always held her own and kept her poise. Elizabeth Edwards never had anything malicious to say, even though she had every right and most people in her position would have.

What an inspirational woman.

I read a quote earlier online from a family friend of hers that said “Elizabeth did not want people to say she lost her battle with cancer. The battle was about living a good life and that she won.” What a great outlook on life – I know most people without a doubt would not be thinking in such a positive manner.

My condolences go out to her family (especially her children) and friends.

P.S. Don’t forget to leave me a comment below on your thoughts! As always, I’d love to hear from you.

Facebook: Cartoon Default Photo

If you are actively using Facebook, by now you have certainly seen some (if not many) of your friends change their default pictures to an image of a cartoon.

If it wasn’t explained why, and you were curious – I’m sure you inquired and found out. But a lot of people still don’t understand why — which is one of the reasons I question it in the first place.

The explanation attached to the profile picture change is something to the likes of “Change your picture to a cartoon from your childhood. The goal? To not see a human face on Facebook until Monday, December 6th. Join the fight against child abuse & copy & paste to your status to invite your friends to do the same.

In the early stages of all of this happening, I would get annoyed each time I saw it — but not really think too much about it. But when I saw my brother Faraz post “If you know a child is being abused, please call 1-800-4-A-CHILD instead of just changing your profile picture to a cartoon” I immediately smiled and thought THIS is something I could go along with and promote. Instead of belittling what is a serious problem in the United States and across the globe, this was good information that should be passed along.

My number one question or problem with the cartoon scenario is: does the problem or at least the severity of the problem that is child abuse suddenly disappear after December 6th?

I’m sure many of the people who changed their Facebook profile photo thought that by doing so, they were promoting a good cause… but most didn’t even bother explaining the reason they were changing their photo in the first place. Instead of passively participating, we should all take an active stance.

Over the last twelve hours or so, I’m pleased to see several of my Facebook “friends” change their statuses to what my brother wrote and I urge you to do the same.

This whole thing reminded me of a little while back when females posted on their Facebook statuses where they “liked it” in order to promote breast cancer. It was supposed to imply where they liked to leave their purses, but it became so racy and provocative and I don’t think it raised any awareness at all. Breast Cancer is the number one cause of death for females, and to undermine its severity just baffles me each time.

What cause will be next?

Instead, why not provide people with information? Or provide links to where people can donate to for further research and prevention. Wouldn’t it be amazing if both of these problems became a thing of the past?

There are many pros and cons to social media. You can use them to promote great causes like child abuse and cancer amongst many others, but there is a way to do it. The growing trend unfortunately is that social media just desensitizes us more and more.

P.S. Don’t forget to leave me a comment below on your thoughts! As always, I’d love to hear from you.