Patricia’s LiFe…

April 23, 2008

5 Things to Avoid in Las Vegas

Filed under: tips, travel — Tags: , , — patriciaholdenmd @ 2:52 am

I’ve been to Las Vegas quite a few times with my husband. I haven’t had any real trouble so far and have always enjoyed my visits. However, it may not be the same for everyone. Here a few things to avoid while on a vacation in the city.

Driving – Traffic can get really bad in Las Vegas, especially the Strip. Instead of driving, try taking a walk or take a taxi. The monorail is also an alternative.

Losing all your money on gambling – In gambling, sometimes you win, often times you don’t. Don’t go to Las Vegas in the hopes of winning a lot of money in one of the casinos. Many people have tried and many have failed. My husband and I gamble just for fun. I suggest you do the same.

Drinking – Alright, drinking is fine but not too much that you’ll spending the next day in the hotel with a massive hangover. Also, getting drunk in Vegas would be bad in more ways than one – it could quickly lead you to the above situation (gambling).

The Heat – When I say “heat”, I’m not just talking about the scenes in Las Vegas. The city is in the desert and temperatures could easily reach 90 – 100 degrees during the summer. Bring a lot of water to avoid dehydration and avoid the afternoon sun.

The Wrong Crowd – Las Vegas is not called Sin City for nothing. Especially in the casinos, there are a lot of unlikable people that move around. People who smoke without any regard for other people, people who drink in public and often go loud when drunk, and scantily clad women are but a few of them. If you’re going to Las Vegas for a vacation, at least you should know what you’re getting in to.

March 25, 2008

Mysterious Diseases: Are you aware of it?

Filed under: disease — Tags: , , , — patriciaholdenmd @ 1:11 am

There are some diseases that we never really knew where it started or where it came from. It just mysteriously appears. I have made a list of mysterious disease that even medicine sometimes couldn’t explain.

  • Morgellons Disease

A very mysterious skin disorder has cropped up again just recently. It is said to have a creepy-crawly feeling on the skin and has an odd multi-colored fibrous filaments protruding from an open wound. It can sometimes be blamed as psychotic delusions but some medical communities say the symptoms are very real. Canada, Australia, UK, and the Netherlands are said to be affected by the disease. But majority of the reported cases came from Florida, California, and Texas.

  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

The classic MUPS or medically unexplained physical symptoms, it is the feeling of more than just being tired. Most patients often get bed-ridden for days. This disease is debilitating and can’t be resolved by bed rest. It can even persist for years, the cause has never been identified yet and no specific diagnostic procedures are available.

  • Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease

A rare brain disorder, also known as the Mad-Cow Disease, is contracted from eating an infected beef. It can be fatal and quick acting, this disease develops even the doctors couldn’t possibly figure out and prevent. The incidence of death in the United States was said to be higher in patients aging from 55-65 years old.

  • Schizophrenia

A mental disorder which is considered the most puzzling, the patient suffers from inability to distinguish between fantasy and reality. The patients can be delusional, has hallucinations, disorganized speech, and lack of motivation or emotion. The disease has no defining medical tests.

  • Autoimmune Disorders

A disease that treats the normal body function and organs as the enemy such as Lupus and Multiple Sclerosis; they usually are debilitating, chronic, and it usually don’t have a cure and treatment is symptom-based.

  • Pica

Insatiable urge to eat non-food substances like paper, glue, clay, and dirt. This disease has no cause and no cure. Pica in children can be very dangerous, sometimes children eat paints that contain lead and they may suffer from lead poisoning leading to brain damage.

  • Avian Flu

A bird carried powerful flu virus, and mutates into a strain that affects humans. The death rate is actually 50% mostly by humans handling infected birds.

  • Common Cold

Common colds maybe a common disease but still mysteriously can’t be treated by antibiotics but a simple chicken soup and rest can do the trick. The doctors actually know a little about the nose-running, cough-inducing cold, and the root cause.

  • Alzheimer’s Disease

A degenerative brain disorder which manifests differently among different people. The root cause can’t be determined or understood and it can’t be treated effectively. Patients’ disease progresses from a mild cognitive impairment to advanced dementia.

  • AIDS

An acquired immune deficiency syndrome still has no cure. It is the most potent killer most especially in developing countries. We all know it started from monkeys and jumped into humans.

March 11, 2008

How to Get New People into Your Life

Filed under: tips — Tags: , , , , — patriciaholdenmd @ 10:54 am

 

Getting bored with your old buddies? Maybe welcoming new people in to your life is just what you need. Make your life more exciting and interesting by being friendlier than you already are. Here are some ways and places to meet new people.

  • Go to an Art Museumart museum

Try to join an art museum, regular members always gets invited to a lot of special events such as programs, museum openings, workshops, fund raising, and special art exhibits by popular artists. Go by yourself and make yourself available to people. Appreciate the art, so people will start noticing you.

  • Establish your own Book Club

Ask few of your good friends to bring someone they admire and you haven’t met to your book club. This way, you can meet great new people.

 

  • Enlist yourself in a Foreign Language Class

It’s a good investment plus you can have new friends in class. Learning a new language can be an advantage when you on a trip in some country. Who knows, maybe you can “causerie” your way to a hunky French dude on your trip to France someday!

  • Take some dancing lessons

dancing lessonRemember to sign up without any partner, and groove yourself into a bunch of new dancing groups.

 

  • Enroll in a cooking class

Pick something different like Mexican, Thai, or Moroccan cooking class. You’ll be able to meet at least a dozen new peeps. Then throw a buffet graduation party with your new classmates.

  • Take a vacation

Go on tours, you can meet new people by going on tours instead of going with your friends. The tendency of traveling alone is asking other people, talking with others, and hanging out with some people you just knew.

  • Hang out by the magazine racks

Talk to other people hanging out by the magazine rack as well. Try opening a topic about their favorite magazine, in that way the person will be interested in talking to you.

  • Sign up for a fun run

fun run It’s a better way of helping raise money for charities and as well as meeting new people. Everyone will be interested in talking to fellow fund-raisers since you have the same goal, and everyone is united for a single cause.

  • Go Partying!

Make yourself go on parties whenever you get invited. And try not to seat in one corner and put a hole on the sofa. Talk to people, circulate!

  • Be Gutsy

The next time you ride a bus, a plane, or a train be gusty and introduce yourself and be conversational instead of burrowing your face in your book.

  • Attend Sports events

GO alone. Seat beside fellow sports spectators and ask them but not to the point of disturbing and annoying them. Ask a little bit about the game and the team they are rooting for.

  • Chat with people you usually don’t talk to

Chitchat with your pizza delivery boy, pharmacist, mailman, dry cleaning lady, or even the next biker you see. Ask something about what they do, like for bikers, ask them where to purchase a really nice set of wheels.

People who explore new things has better chance of meeting new people, so throw your old habit away and start gaining new ones together with gaining new friends.

February 26, 2008

The Easiest Way to Prevent Traveler’s Diseases

Filed under: disease, travel — Tags: , , , , , — patriciaholdenmd @ 1:51 am

Most of us love to travel a lot without knowing what the consequences might be. We are not very aware of certain diseases that we can pick up from different countries that we travel to. So what are traveler’s diseases anyway? These are diseases that we contract when traveling away from home, most especially when we travel from a highly developed country to a less developed one. These diseases can be acquired by eating or drinking contaminated food or water, from animal droppings, from soil, close encounter with infected animals, and if bitten by vectors like mosquitoes, flies, and ticks. Some can even be derived from walking and swimming on the beach barefooted. Simple things that we ignore can actually be the cause of a dreadful disease.

Let me give you some of the most popular diseases that we can contract while on a travel, and I will be giving pointers on how to prevent from getting these diseases.

  • African Sleeping Sicknessafrican sleeping sickness

As the name implies, this disease can be contracted from the Eastern and Central Africa. It is also called the African trypanosomiasis. It is caused by a parasite and is transmitted by a tsetse fly causing a systemic disease. This is most abundant in Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Ethiopia, Zaire, Zimbabwe, and Botswana. The disease would occur within the period of four weeks, with initial symptoms of fever, rash, skin lesions, swollen lymph nodes, and edema. And this can actually progress to meningoencephalitis, which is a very serious disease. Once meningoencephalitis has occurred, personality changes, progressive confusion, irritability, weight loss, slurred speech, seizures, insomnia, and difficulty in walking and talking will then follow.

There are no drugs or vaccine that can prevent this disease. But here are some tips to prevent insect bites.

1. Wear long-sleeved shirt and pants for protection, and it should be thick because tsetse fly can bite through clothing materials.

2. Tsetse flies are attracted to bright and dark colors, so it is better to wear something khaki or neutral-colored clothes.

3. Bed nets are best recommended while napping.

tsetse fly4. Avoid riding open vehicles like jeeps or pickup trucks. Tsetse flies are fond of dust created by moving vehicles.

5. Tsetse fly usually rest in the bushes during hot days, but they bite once disturbed. So avoid walking thru the bushes.

  • Mad Cow Disease

This is a bovine spongiform encephalopathy that affects the cattle but with the newmad cow variant, the disease was passed to humans. Both diseases cause fatal brain injuries and diseases. Most of the cases are found in Great Britain, the disease resulted from feeding a cattle with scrapie-containing sheep meat and bone. This disease can be passed to humans by eating an infected beef, causing the humans to have mental retardation and dementia. Travelers can reduce the risk of exposure by avoiding beef, or selecting beef products, instead of eating ground beef and sausages, it is better to eat solid pieces of beef.

  • Cholera

It is an infectious, acute disease from consuming contaminated water and food. The bacteria Vibrio cholera is to blame for this disease. It is mostly found in South Asia, Africa, and Latin America like Mexico, Guatemala, Ecuador, Peru, and Columbia. The unsanitary disposal of excrement is the cause of an impure water supply attracting Vibrio cholera.

How can we prevent Cholera? As the center of disease control says “Boil it, cook it, peel it, or forget it”. Here are some preventive measures that we should remember.

1. Use and drink only boiled or chemically disinfected water. Use disinfected cholerawater for brushing teeth, washing your face and hands, washing fruits and vegetables, utensils, bottles, glasses.

2. Refrain from eating food and drinking beverages with unknown sources like unpasteurized milk or milk products, raw meats, shellfish, and any fish from tropical reefs.

Like what I always say, it’s better to be safe than sorry!

February 22, 2008

Like No Other Weekend in Vegas

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , — patriciaholdenmd @ 12:38 am


las vegas

I couldn’t compare this weekend to my other trips to Las Vegas. It was quite different this time. We dropped off the children to my moms, and had the weekend just with my husband. This is our way of relaxing and recharging from a very stressful work.

We went to Las Vegas last weekend and stayed at Green Valley Ranch Resort & Spa in Nevada. I can say it is different there since the Resort is so quite and peaceful unlike thegreen valley resort others that has all the bars and casinos. This time, my husband and I spent the whole weekend without gambling. People always think when you go to Las Vegas; all you can do is gamble, gamble, and gamble. I disagree, because of this new experience I had in Green Valley.

Green Valley has an elegant décor, world-class cuisine, and high-standard accommodations. The rooms are very spacious with combination of modern and old-style amenities. The best thing that I experienced with Green Valley is the Spa. A relaxing spa treatment made my stress go away. I personally availed the beauty treatments and the massage, and attended yoga class. Epicurean adventure, that’s how I can describe dining in Green Valley. They have the variety of restaurants, like Hank’s Fine Steaks and Martinis, Grand café, II Fornaio, Sushi and Sake, and a lot more.

Now you can think of Vegas if you want to enjoy casinos and have a relaxing time as well.

February 19, 2008

Dishes Even Exotic Food Lovers Would Think Twice to Eat

Filed under: travel — Tags: , , , — patriciaholdenmd @ 8:41 pm

exotic foods

I’m a person who loves to venture on new experiences; like trying new cuisines or even exotic foods from different countries around the world. But I do have my limits as well. I may try certain exotic foods but sometimes I would doubt myself if I should put it in my mouth. Some exotic foods are very nasty to look at but once you eat it, it would actually taste good. Like they say, looks can be very deceiving.

When I was in China, I went to a Korean restaurant and ordered bosintang. bosintang Without me asking what’s in it, I ate so much since I heard it is a popular Korean Cuisine. I was at my last bite when the owner approached me and said “I hope you enjoyed our spicy dog stew”. I stopped for a moment, and had a thought, “damn, I just ate a dog. But what the heck, it tastes good anyway”.

Then we strolled around China and found more exotic foods the Chinese prefers to eat. There were seahorse, scorpion, cicada, stinky fish, and star fishes. They say if you eat the seahorse, it will strengthen your sexual ability, and scorpions cure certain diseases by making your blood hotter during a cold climate. But I don’t think I would put any of those near my mouth.

 

Here are some of the exotic foods I have encountered so far.

  • Lemon ants of Ecuador – with vague tangy, lemony taste
lemon ants
  • Bulls testicle in Spain
bulls testicle
  • Grasshopper pizza in Mexico
grasshopper pizza
  • Whitefish ice cream in Alaska
white fish ice cream
  • Fried Bees of Taiwan
fried bees
  • Silk worms in Vietnam
silk worms

 

February 12, 2008

Secrets to Winning an Auction

Filed under: travel — Tags: , , , , — patriciaholdenmd @ 10:12 pm

auctions

I always join online bidding but I never get to win anything at all. So I was wondering maybe there is a technique in doing this. Then I decided to research on how to win an auction. It’s where I learned that there are a lot ways to win one. Let me share the new knowledge I gained so far. So here it goes.

  • First you’ve got to know the auctions

Before you even start bidding, the first thing to do is to attend as many auctions as you can and observe how things go. Check and compare the quoted price to the actual price of the item. And always add at least 10 percent to the quoted price. Most especially if the item is rare and not sold in other markets.

  • Then, get set to buy

Before the bidding or the auctions starts, make sure you organize your finance first. Make sure that your solicitor checks the sale contract. Check the condition of theauction101 item you are about to buy. Make a research on the place or the item that you are willing to spend money on, check if it’s all worth buying.

  • Beware of the dummy bidders

Most of the bidders are dummy bidders; they are used to push the auction prices up. Try to identify who the true bidders are. This is the best tool that auctioneers sometimes use to get more money out of you. The dummy bidders will start bidding and even bid against you so that you will try to bid higher. If they have reached the satisfied amount, they will stop bidding so that you will win the auction, without you knowing that you have been played.

  • Bid only up to your Limit, do not over bid

Right even before the auction starts, you must decide on your maximum bid. Meaning stop biddingset a maximum amount you are willing to spend. Having a bidding limit is the most powerful and strongest tool in auction success. Do not over bid; this is where your knowledge about the item being sold comes in. If you think that it is over the limit of the actual price, then stop bidding. It’s not at all worth winning an over-priced item. Make sure that you bid firmly and confidently so your opponent gets an impression that they will never win the auction. Try to slow down the bidding by bidding in smaller amounts, then later on bid higher. But once you hit your limit, better stop bidding.

  • Lastly, do not forget the 4th rule

Never ever break the 4th rule of bidding. For some buyers, a chance of getting a good item is bidding in a good price. But whatever happens, stick to your bidding limit!

 

That’s the basic knowledge we know about bidding. Now, here are the secrets you’ve all been waiting for.

  • Jump Bidding

In jump bidding, the bidder tries to frighten the opposing bidder. How does this work? It’s done by offering a much higher bid. For example, the original price is at $30, and then the bidding goes up only about $5 each bid. What you can do is to jump from a $5 bid to a much, much higher bid like 40 dollars higher. This can scare off your opponent but it can also backfire at you. It’s either the opponent makes his own jump bid or it may cause a panic to the opponent assuming the item must be worth spending more money on.

  • Holding Back

Holding back intends to hold back his bid at the last minute just when the auctioneer is about to bring the hammer down. The sense behind this technique is to wait for all the bidders to exhaust all their money then jump in at the last second. This can actually work, but of course this can also have a negative effect. Such as causing a last minute bidding craze, making the winner pay more than what is intended.

  • Throw Bidding

In this technique, what the bidder does is to disrupt the flow of bidding. Even the auctioneer will be caught off guard. This can cause a hindrance to the flow of bids, making the other bidders confused. For example, if they are bidding in hundreds then you can bid in other odd amount like $649 which can be off-putting to other bidders.

  • After the Auction Vultures

Basically, this is when the item was not sold either because no one bid on it or no one reached the reserved price. After the auction, a potential buyer can make a lower offer for the item.

You must be wondering where you would apply this knowledge. Like I said before I enjoyvacation joining some online auctions, like EBay, and some travel auctions. Since I love to travel a lot, I started looking for some packages and deal sites where I can spend less money while enjoying a truly beautiful and elegant vacation.

For things that are rare, or if I wanted to get something for a cheaper price, I check eBay for some materials or items that I need. But for traveling, I learned about this auction site where I can start bidding for only $1 for a vacation or luxury trip that I want. They even have a lot of options to choose from. Where in the world would you get a luxurious vacation that may only cost you less money than the actual price of the trip? With the helpful tips that I got now, I hope I’ll be able to win one of the beautiful vacation trips that I’ve been dreaming of.

February 6, 2008

Another Caribbean Trip

Filed under: travel — Tags: , , — patriciaholdenmd @ 10:04 pm

 

british Islands

Let me share another experience I had when I was at the Caribbean. I together with my husband and my kids visited the beautiful British Virgin Islands. It had sugary sand beaches with pastel, turquoise water. The sea breezes as if whispering something relaxing to my ears made me feel so calm and very peaceful during our stay in Peter Island Resort. My husband and my kids enjoyed paddling sea kayak, windsurfing, and even playing beach volleyball was made very enjoyable.

There are lots of places we visited during our stay in the British Islands. We wentparasailing sailing and boating which was a lot of fun, we also availed the sunset cruise they offered us. It was quite nice watching the sunset in the middle of the sea. They also had diving spots, my husband tried the Rhone Reef diving area and he said that it was a once in a lifetime experience. While my husband was out diving, my kids and I went fishing by Tortola Beef Island. The next day we tried out parasailing, we saw the beautiful island and beaches from a top view. The scenery was just superb and breathtaking.

We enjoyed our stay there but I felt like three days was not enough. Maybe we’ll try to go there again and have a week of vacation.

February 5, 2008

Must-Go Places in Barbados

Filed under: travel — Tags: , , , — patriciaholdenmd @ 12:01 am

barbados

Barbados is one of the ruggedly beautiful places with captivating flora and fauna. I specifically enjoyed the white and calm beaches at the south west coast. You’ll have a lot of choices for hotels, restaurants and bars. I’ve been to Barbados three times and I can’t help myself from wanting to go back and have some more fun. But I specially have places that I enjoy visiting. I would like to share some of the places that I think you would enjoy during your stay in Barbados.

  • Golden Sands Beach

It is what they call the Temptation Island. You’ll enjoy the fresh easy breeze while getting yourself tanned. Unwind and relax in the peaceful Caribbean Ocean. Golden Sands Beach is near the Oistins harbor where wind-surfers hang-out. It is also a place where people can dream of going back to Barbados after their departure.

There are hotel accommodations nearby as well, the Sea Gaze Apartment and the Golden Sands Hotel. Sea Gaze Apartment is truly a relaxing place to stay since it is located forty feet from the sea. It is a good spot for wind-surfers and swimmers. While in Golden Sands Hotel you will enjoy the nice and friendly atmosphere from the staff. They have poolside bars where you can sip their specially brewed rum punch under the extravagant tropical gardens.

  • The House

It is the sanctuary of balance and beauty. Simply retreat to the tranquilizing beauty of The House. It has a secluded island just for you; enjoy the white sand beachhoneymooners with its blue-green sea. The House is a romantic place for honeymooners to settle in. You can either enjoy an intimate and relaxing haven of privacy in the luxuriant grounds of the hotel or join activities like water sports or golf in the Royal Westmoreland Country Club, and tours to historic plantations and churches. You can also enjoy complimentary windsurfing, kayaking, boogie boarding, banana boat and Hobie Cat rides, and waterskiing.

Heavenly tastes of Caribbean cuisines together with fine wines are offered in Daphne’s Restaurant. It is located directly adjacent to The House, and it caters an exceptional culinary experience. They offer a variation of Modern Italian menus matched with new trends of cooking.

  • Club Xtremeclub xtreme

Experience the new concept of clubbing with hot DJ’s, and have the wildest party of your life. Club Xtreme is the newest club in Barbados. They have threefun & party zones, The Xtreme Zone, Game Zone, and the Chill Zone. Pumping sounds and flowing drinks will put you into the beat in the Xtreme Zone. Enjoy the coolest games in the arcade rooms of the Game Zone. And loosen up in the Chill Zone; if you want to party but don’t want to be in the middle of the crowd then this is where you can hang out. Pretty cool!

Just thinking and writing about Barbados makes me want to go back and have fun myself. Maybe I’ll meet you there someday. Loosen up and have your wildest parties ever!

January 29, 2008

Travel Pooper

Filed under: travel — Tags: , , — patriciaholdenmd @ 11:31 pm

 

travel tips

I always love to travel, but the problem with me is getting a loose bowel movement. I enjoy trying new things as I travel; trying the cultures of any country I go to. Trying new cuisine is the one thing I enjoy the most. But then I get a loose bowel movement like this one time when I went to China. This is called the “Traveler’s Diarrhea“. Let me give you some overview about this certain disease, so as to avoid getting it.

Traveler’s diarrhea is common to occur in people who travel a lot. About 20-25% ofdiarrhea international travelers gets diarrhea. The usual onset of traveler’s diarrhea is during the first week of travel but may still occur all through out the travel or even after the travel. The easiest way of determining if you got traveler’s diarrhea is the destination of your travel since there is a higher chance of it developing in some countries of Middle East, Latin America, Asia, and Africa. A young adult, immunosuppressed patients, diabetic person, or a person with an inflammatory bowel disease, or even someone who takes H2 blockers or antacid has a higher risk of getting traveler’s diarrhea. But men and women has an equal rate of occurrence. Traveler’s diarrhea is caused by eating or ingesting a fecally contaminated food or water.

Common Symptoms of Traveler’s Diarrhea

  • Abrupt Onset – occurs instantly with out any warning
  • Increased frequency, volume, and weight of stool
  • Altered consistency of stool – it can be soft or watery
  • Frequency usually ranges from four to five loose or watery bowel movement per day
  • Nausea – the feeling of wanting to vomit
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal cramping
  • Bloating
  • Fever
  • Urgency to defecate
  • Body malaise – also related to body weakness

This is a benign disease and disappears in 1 to 2 days without treating it. Usually traveler’srestroom diarrhea resolve in a week but in some resolves in a month. This is caused by a bacterial enteropathogen called the Escherichia coli or the ETEC. ETEC causes a watery diarrhea and is commonly developing with low-grade fever.

There are ways that we can do to avoid traveler’s diarrhea. Preventive measures should be practiced, unlike me who sometimes is too stubborn, do not observe or do this preventive measures. But don’t be like me, because I get what I deserve after eating those nasty foods. Here are some ways we can use to prevent ourselves from getting a traveler’s diarrhea.

  • Do not buy or eat food or drink beverages from unhygienic establishments or from street vendors.
  • Raw or undercooked meat and seafood should be avoided.
  • In eating raw fruits and vegetables, peel them yourselves. Don’t eat or buy peeled fruits or vegetables.
  • Tap water, unpasteurized milk and dairy products are usually fecally contaminated.

Traveler’s diarrhea is a self-limiting disease, it resolves without even treating it. But we can oral rehydrate ourselves to be able to replace the lost fluid and electrolytes from our system. Clear fluids are often recommended for us adults.

So let us practice more of the preventive measures for us to enjoy more of our trip or vacation.

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