Holiday · Reviews · travel

Top 5 Las Vegas Hotels To Enjoy

As you all know – I work in the customer service industry. Have done for 8 years now, well my husband and I love to travel. We frequent Las Vegas quite a bit. For this reason I’ve compiled a list of the More popular Hotels that we have stayed at and what we thought of them. These hotels include: The Cosmopolitan, Bellagio, Caesar’s Palace, Aria, and the Wynn. I’ve listed the hotels in the order of the ones we liked the most to the ones we weren’t overwhelmed with.

**as a note to my readers – I do not get any affiliate payout for these reviews. Meaning they are strictly based on my experience and unbiased or “bought”**

1. The Cosmopolitan- (9/10)

We had a great experience here. We were able to check in early and the front desk staff was super friendly and attentive. We were offered the option of an upgraded room that had a view of the Bellagio fountains and a Japanese bathtub. Let me just say that it was worth every penny! We had a beautiful balcony. The tub had a huge window facing the fountains which was a great perk for me – I was able to relax in the tub and watch the show! They also were able to accommodate our request for a later checkout – super pleased about that. The pool was a great experience. They have these nice wave chairs where you can drag it into the shallows and lounge in the water for no extra charge. The pools are wading pools – meaning there are no stairs they come out via a ramp. While the lower pool was very popular due to the bar – the upper pool was more relaxing, it also had umbrellas to provide shaded areas in the pool.

2. The Aria- (8/10)

To begin the check in area was very clean. Details matter and their area was clean and decorated appropriately. The minimalistic flower arrangements did a lot.

The room was spacey- not as large as the room in the Cosmopolitan or the Wynn, but equally as nice. It was a fully automated room. Everything was controlled by and iPad, including the curtains. They gave us and early check in but were unable to give us a late checkout – little bit of a let down. However, their online checkout system was very user friendly and you could access it from multiple devices. Their pool systems were more traditional. The pool side attendants really were lacking however. They seemed to not care and lack gumption- all except one. Carly saved our pool side experience. Her 4 seasons of working as a pool side server shone through and her guest service game was on par! She was able to explain all of the menu to us and had a great attitude – super approachable. She was someone we searched out which pool she was serving before we sat down. While the Aria has many great things to offer – due to our pool experience and the size of the room it really just fell flat and cane second on our list.

3.Caesar’s Palace- (7/10)

Caesar’s palace has many great things to offer. While we did end up getting married in their chapel and I would highly recommend shu as a wedding coordinator because she saved my sanity multiple times. Caesar’s really only ranks 3rd for us. Their wedding chapels are gorgeous and worth using. The wedding suit was huge. About the size of a medium sized studio apartment. The rooms here are definitely older, but they are clean and the staff is always friendly. Caesar’s also many options of things that their visitors can do (the shops, restaurants, and endless games). The room had many windows which for me is a huge deal – I always want more light in my room (comes from living in a winterized state for so long). We have not experienced the pools in Caesar’s except the winter and it was too cold to do much swimming. But in the summer they have a secluded European pool system and American pools. Everything is influenced by Roman architecture and is gorgeous. Due to it simply being an older hotel – this ranks as 3rd on our list.

4. The Wynn- (7/10)

The Wynn was the first hotel I stayed at on the strip and so because of the memories there it holds my heart but as a rated hotel it falls to the fourth on our list. The room we received was clean and spotless. It was a suit. The view lacked but that was ok. We didn’t get in early and it took longer for us to check in than it has anywhere else. The bed was perfectly fluffy and yet still firm enough. The entry area was stunning. They change the flowers regularly.

The next day they were different. It’s still one of my favorite hotels to walk through due to the flowers alone. The pool side service was excellent. Our attendant was very attentive and gracious. There was plenty of entertainment within this casino. While there are great memories the customer service was simply sub par to other service we received.

5. The Bellagio- (6/10)

The Bellagio is known around the world. Due to being featured in movies like the Oceans movies – it has built up a reputation for itself. I was disappointed. We had a decent check in and they gave a later checkout. However, the room was tiny and in completely dark tones. It only had a few windows and felt like a prison on some level. The decor was nice but very dated. They are known for their fountains – which I didn’t get a view of. It was very clear that The Bellagio really only provides rooms for crashing purposes because the casino part is huge. There’s plenty of games and it is evident they want you to only stay if you are gaming. This only disappointed me and I was very underwhelmed by my experience there. We did not experience the poolside service, perhaps that would have been our saving grace.

Overall, we have had some great experiences but I would highly recommend the newer casinos to stay in. They have more accommodation perks and were not disappointing at all. I’m sure the older casinos could be amazing but they need to be renovated and up dated.

Books · Reviews · School tips

The Art of Thinking: Truths Found from Poetry

Below I have encluded an explication of a passage that I wrote some time ago. I didn’t have long to write a post this week but I wanted to share something that I’m proud of and something that maybe another student will have to do. Hopefully it will be helpful and if not enlightening. I would recommend you all read the book – it’s extremely good.

 

An explication of a passage in Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates

“I was learning the craft of poetry, which really was an intensive version of what my mother had taught me all those years ago – the craft of writing as the art of thinking. Poetry aims for an economy of truth – loose and useless words must be discarded, and I found that these loose and useless words were not separate from loose and useless thoughts. Poetry was not simply the transcription of notions – beautiful writing rarely is. I wanted to learn to write, which was ultimately, still, as my mother had taught me, a confrontation with my own innocence, my own rationalizations. Poetry was the processing of my thoughts until the slag of justification fell away and I was left with the cold steel truths of life.” (pg.51-52)

Throughout his book, Between the World and Me, Ta-Nehisi Coates informs his son about his internal battle with his social position in the world as a young man. This passage correlates directly to his struggle with finding the truth. While he explains, earlier in his book, that he took time to study in the library for any answers he might need from outside sources, this passage informs the audience that he also looked intrinsically for the answers to the inner turmoil he experienced. Within the first sentence he informs his son that he learned poetry, which he says is an intensive rendition of what his mother taught him as a child. Earlier in the book he states that his mother always had him write down his questions and intrinsically search out reasons why he thought and acted the way he did. On page 51, Coates states that poetry forced him to do the same: to learn the art of thinking. He learned this art by confronting his own innocence and rationalizations, by forming poetry that helped him see the “cold steel truths of life”.

Many believe that poetry is something that is romantic. Something that can be read quickly, quietly, and without thought. Coates states that poetry is something different. He says it “aims for an economy of truth…” meaning that poetry is meant to utilize the truth, to be a stage on which truth is set. The word “economy” in this sentence means “the way in which something is managed” according to the Oxford English Dictionary. What Coates preposes is that poetry, even in its simplest form, is the essence of truth. He says that it discards “loose and useless words” even though they “…are not separate from loose and useless thoughts.” I believe that when he wrote this, the easiest way to understand what he meant is thus: poetry, while fluid and rythmic, is not filled with unnecessary words; even though, sometimes it may be filled by loose and sometimes useless thoughts and ideas. That is to say, on occasion, poetry is simply meant for the beauty it provides and not always to provoke deep thoughts. Coates concludes by saying that “Poetry was not simply the transcription of notions – beautiful writing rarely is.” This statement infers the idea that Coates believed that most poetry was founded on great ideas, profound thoughts, and the cornerstone of the writers beliefs, ideals, or morals. The way in which Coates expresses his understanding of poetry is that of a direct, flowing, and rhythmic way to understand one’s own innocence and rationalizations. 

He expresses his desire to learn to write in a way which he was taught – to confront his own innocence and rationalizations. As he stated in the beginning of the passage “…the craft of writing as the art of thinking…” Coates understands, as most great poets and writers do, that the craft of writing is to think. Anyone can obtain the ability to write, but few can obtain the art of thinking. A craft is something that is learned – a trade that is taught by someone. The arts are something that is a passion, a process by which someone works until they have perfected what they do to make it beautiful and alluring to others. What is to be understood from this particular part of the passage is that, in order to write well and influence others, one must think critically and be willing to challenge everything known to them. Coates states that he wanted to confront his own innocence and rationalizations, he understood that in order to understand the world, and to better understand the way in which he was to function within it, he needed to challenge what he knew. Coates understood that innocence and rationalizations will pass away and he seeks to do it himself through his own intrinsic searching, through the art of thinking, and the craft of writing. 

In the last sentence of his passage, Coates states that “Poetry was the processing of my thoughts until the slag of justification fell away and I was left with the cold steel truths of life.” The implication that stems from this particular sentence is that by leaving behind the “loose” and “useless” words, Coates was able to better direct his thoughts. He talks of the “… slag of justification..” this could be a reference back to his rationalizations that he spoke of earlier and wanted to confront. When he mentions the “slag of justification” falling away, it is easy to understand that he means all his rationalizations came to nothing and from that he was able to move forward to what was left. Slag refers to the substance. This means that all the basis of his justifications fell away. Coates was able to, without his rationalization or justifications, understand these “cold steel truths of life”.

Coates talks about the “cold steel truths of life” that he was left with after his justifications, rationalizations, and innocence fell away in the last part of this passage. While there are many truths to life, due to the context of this book, it could be argued that he understood these truths to be the way in which life would continue for him. He could also be referring to the manner in which society treated African Americans and how he believed it was unlikely to change. Whatever these truths are, he describes them as being cold as steel. A visualization to the reader that these truths are unforgiving and unbending, like steel bars on an iron cage. These are the answers he has been searching for, but it is clear from his description of them – they are not the ones he wants. 

Through his passage Coates brings to life what poetry can be for a writer. It can be a way to weedle out the unnecessary words and ideas, and simply come to the truth. It helps the writer to wrestle with questions they may not otherwise think of asking themselves. And it gives direction to the answers and, potentially, to the truth. Poetry is the best form of writing; the best available way to learn the art of thinking, a way to find the truth.

 

Works Cited

 

Coates, Ta-Nehisi. Between the World and Me. First edition. New York: Spiegel & Grau, 2015.

 

“economy, n.” OED Online. Oxford University Press, June 2018. Web. 18 July 2018.

 

Oxford English Dictionary

“Islamophobia, n.” OED Online. Oxford University Press, July 2018. Web. 22 October 2018.

New York Times – “Arabian Knights” song; July 14, 1993

https://www.nytimes.com/1993/07/14/opinion/it-s-racist-but-hey-it-s-disney.html

Daily Life · Family · Relationships

5 Of The Best Relationship Tips

Everybody has trouble with relationships. Most of the best movies or books revolve around this fact – interpersonal relationships.

I would be lying if I didn’t say that I haven’t had my share. I’m not perfect, I’ve failed miserably at times. I won’t lie to you – I’ve been divorced, in failed relationships, fights, remarried and still have battles.

Many people would say that this makes me inqualified to speak on relationships – why listen to someone who couldn’t do it right the first time? I’ll tell you something – something everyone knows but no one says aloud. The ones who failed the first times are the ones we listen to on a daily basis – they know what mistakes not to make.

Think about this – Humanity learned from people who made mistakes: 

Benjamin Franklin found electricity due to a failed attempt of putting a key to a kite.

Thomas Eddison – He had over 1000 unsuccessful tries at making a light bulb. He finally found one.

Amelia Earhart gave her life trying to fly across the atlantic and failed – other people learned, followed, and succeeded.

My point is – I may seem unqualified because of 1 unsuccessful attempt but learning and growing is part of my nature. It’s made me who I am. All this to say – I’ve learned what I’m about to share with you. 5 basic relationship tips to help you succeed.

  1. Not Every Battle is Worth Fighting –

Fighting takes a lot of energy. It drains you dry. I’ve learned that peace is better in my household. There are some battles that I will fight out right but most of them, if I sit quietly long enough, my husband will fight in his own mind. Sometimes it’s more worth it if I simply allow him to figure out he is wrong than blatently saying he is, please don’t misunderstand me – when he asks – I will honestly tell him what I think. This doesn’t mean that I need to vocalize it at every moment though. Save your energy – ask questions that prompt introspection from them and they will figure it out on their own.

2. Basic Respect – 

Everyone wants to be respected. Basic respect comes in several forms – some I’m still learning. Listening instead of talking over, not correcting in public, and following someone elses lead are great ways to show respect. Even when my husband is wrong and I know it – I try to listen and not talk over him. I try not to correct him in public – even in front of his own family, and when he directs me to something – I try to follow his lead (as long as it’s in a decent and correct direction). When he asks for my opinion in public I try to word it as politely as possible so that he can understand where I’m coming from and that I don’t agree with him.

3. Compromise – 

Life is compromise. Give and Take. Yin and Yang. Everything is about balance. When it comes to relationships – it’s important to compromise. Sometimes it’s about housework, sometimes it’s going out. For us it’s about purchases, items that we can enjoy outside of work. My husband encourages my good habits – blogging (I got my own domain last night!!!), I encourage his gaming or collecting of figurines. Everyone has their own hobbies and it’s important to find balance and make compromises so that each person gets to keep theirs.

4. They Only Get One Family-

This may seem strange but I’ve had two mother-in-laws in my life. The first, while I tried to be nice and respectful was a real trial for me. The second (My current mother-in-law) is a fair woman. She is my back up. Many times I don’t need to correct my husband because my MIL (Mother-in-law) does it for me. He listens to her far more avidly than he listens to me (not in a bad way) but she is his mother. Many times I can go to her with the problem I’m having with him and she will interceed and help him understand when I can’t. I try to encourage him to spend time with her and also with all his family. You only get one and then it’s over. Family is important and it’s important to keep those relationships up evern when you are married.

5. Stop Expecting…… – 

This is probably the best advice I can give to you – stop having expectations. Life isn’t built on them and you will only be disappointed. I had a revelation the other day when I was irritated with my hubby. I was mad but I was mad because he wasn’t acting the way I expected him to, he was acting the way he had always acted. At some point – you need to stop being irritated because the person is acting the way they always have and not conforming to what you want. It’s kind of freeing – they might grow and change but it won’t be through your expectations and when you stop expecting than you can start forgiving. Forgiving brings healing and healing brings you closer together.

Conclusion: 

I’m no expert. I have, however, found that these tips make all the difference. I have a happier, simpler marriage than some of the others I see. Following these steps and find a simpler form of living. Enjoy the relationships again and hey – if after practicing all these it still isn’t working – maybe it’s time to think about other things…. But that’s another post.

Have tips and tricks? Drop me a Note:

Daily Life · Family · Work

4 of The Best Housekeeping Products

I don’t know about the rest of the world but I barely have time for housekeeping. I work a job that demands the better part of 60 hours a week and I attend school for nursing. That being said, I am a busy woman. Besides having little time and energy for cleaning, I have little desire. I despise cleaning. Laundry, bathrooms, floors – I only clean when I’m irritated. That’s when my house is the cleanest.

Here are a few products that I have found that make it easier.

  1. Windex – Windex is a miracle cleaner. It’s something that will disinfect and make the house smell nice. It works on bathroom counter tops and is great for cleaning sink fixtures. This is a great way to make silver items, windows, mirrors, and the exterior of toilets shine. It also makes a great surface dusting agent but you have to be sure to spray it on a
  2. Toilet Bowl Cleaner – This is an obvious must have for a multitude of reasons. The first being because every toilet needs to be cleaned on the inside regularly. The second which is a trick I picked up for my mother, is that it cleans tubs fabulously! I severely dislike products like Scrubbing Bubbles – I find that they leave a ring around my tub. Toilet bowl cleaner however – Always removes stains and all sorts of rings. It also removes the grime and gritty feeling of the tub. I’ve never had to use anything more than a brush and the toilet cleaner.
  3. Lysol– Lysol really is the amazing. I use it to mop my floors and to white wash my cabinets. It always leaves my house smelling wonderful and removes all the stains. It also is great to use in the tub to leave it smelling fresh and clean.
  4. Dish Soap– This stuff is great. Not only is multipurpose but it’s also a great degreaser. I have used it for the traditional purpose of cleaning my dishes but I have also used it to clean my floors, degrease my stove top, and clean my fridge.

I have found that these products with a brush or cloth and some hot water have gone a long way. If used properly these products can increase the span that your house stays clean. Of course dusting is a regular issue due to weather but other than that – this will help you. If you have any product reviews – I would love to hear them, please fill out the form below.

*I have also found that there are some simple tips to using them. Tune in next time to hear those. *

Children

3 Websites to help you prepare for finals

College level courses are rough. It doesn’t matter if you are fresh out of highschool or if you are headed back to college as an adult. Personally for me, the hardest classes for pass are the ones that are science and math based. Over several years of studying I have found 3 separate websites that have really helped me prepare for exams and finals, which I want to share with my readers because everyone deserves to pass their classes.

  1. Quizlet.com – Quizlet has been great for a multitude of reasons. This website allows you to do a multitude of things. Firstly – it allows you to create any amount of flashcards needed for any chapter or class. Secondly – not only will it drill you on these flashcards but it will do it in a variety of ways. Thirdly – Not only are you able to make your own flash card set but the website also allows you to access other people’s flashcards sets regarding the same topic or any topic that you would like to learn about.
  2. Chegg.com – While it has similar aspects to quizlet in the way of flashcards, chegg also allows you to rent any textbook you may need and that they have available along with other books that might help you to learn about the topic of your choice.
  3. Kahnacademy.com –  This one is probably my favorite to be honest. This website has just about every subject at every level you might need. Not only do they have multiple videos that explain every problem you need to know but they also have multiple practice problems with videos on how to do them and hints. All of these are extremely helpful.

All of these websites have been helpful in passing classes that I have struggled with in the past. I would highly recommend these websites for college students and possibly for even for children who are having a hard time understanding concepts. Being homeschooled myself, I have found these to be incredibly helpful and useful in the learning of new concepts. Have any tips? Feel free to share them below.

Daily Life · School tips · Work

5 Things To Do Before The School Semester Starts

As this semester rises up to greet us it brings to my mind how much needs to be done before I begin school again. So, having sat down and come up with my own list of what needs to be done – I thought I would share it with my readers in a hope that it would help those around me.

  1. Deep Clean Your House – This sounds a bit intensive, and it is, but deep cleaning the house is a great way to start the semester. Not only will it be easier to maintain after you have deep cleaned it but it will also make you feel better and less stressed as you start the semester.
  2. Compile A List Of Items Needed For Classes – It seems easier to wait until you have to get things but honestly – pre-order your books. If you don’t know what they are – email your professors. This is a simple step in getting everything ready for that first day so that you don’t need to think the morning of.
  3. Pre-make Meals – Now I’m the kind of person that will eat based on mood but when it comes to the school year – getting meals pre-done makes things so much easier. Pre-make your breakfast oatmeal or dinner – stick them in the freezer – You might spend a whole day doing this but it will make it easier for you when it’s the school year.
  4. Build That Habit – Go ahead and start building that habit you want to have during the school year. It might be working-out or waking up early, either way if you start now it will make the first few days of school easier to keep up with and maintain the habit.
  5. Set Your Goals – Set your goals for the semester. It might be good grades or maintaining work and school, whatever it is that makes your list – write it down. Keep them short and obtainable. Don’t reach for the stars yet but start simple. You want to be able to succeed.

These are just some simple tips and tricks that I have picked up and found makes my school year easier to adjust to. These things are items that I do before every semester. It makes success easier and also helps prioritize and organize my life.

Have any tips and tricks? Comment below!

Daily Life · Family · Reviews

7 of the Best Clean Shows (UK)

You know what I love about UK (BBC) television? It’s always clean. Think about it – it might have adventure, it might be scary but it’s always clean. It’s refreshing to be able to watch a show that I love and not have to worry about nudity or adult graphics when kids are around. Even kids can watch them. That being said, I’ve compiled a list of the TV shows that I enjoy watching the most from BBC/PBS and that are available on Netflix or Amazon Prime.

  1. Downton Abbey
    • We have all seen it. It’s a great show. This one encompasses life during the early 1900’s in England. It shows us what it would have been like to live during that era. It really does a great job showing us the triumphs and pitfalls of what would have been available to each social class and being able to watch them navigate it is always interesting. This particular show is dramatic, family friendly, and intriguing.
  2. Land Girls
    • Placed in a slightly later timeframe than Downton Abbey – Land Girls does a great job showing how women contributed to the English economy during WWII. It follows 4 girls and their triumphs and failures throughout a year. While some go on to find love, others are faced with moral dilemmas, and some are filled it with anguish. I would classify this show as family friendly, historical, and dramatic.
  3. Call The Midwife – 
    • This show is easily one of my favorites. While the main character disappears after the first season or two – the show continues and it really gives a great insight into what nursing was like in the 1950’s. Surprisingly my grandmother was actually a nurse during that time frame in the US and when I ask her – she tells me the show is very accurate. This show upholds the ideals of the 1950’s house wife, morals, and conscience of England. Therefore, this show is classified as historically accurate, clean, and while pieces might be not child friendly, it is over all family friendly.
  4. Sherlock – 
    • I think we can all agree that Benedict Cumberbatch is an excellent actor. He and Martin Freeman have paired off in this riveting show to give us a great duo known as “Sherlock” and “Watson”. This show is not only interesting and excellent at holding a short attention span but is exciting and a family friendly detective show. Over all, the show does a great spin on a well-known classic book.
  5. Dr.Who- 
    • Firstly if you haven’t seen this show, put down your computer or phone and go watch it. This show happens to be one of my favorites. The beauty is that the main character is always changing (every season or two) and so does his companion. It’s a bit like James Bond – the constant change brings something new to the show and everyone has their own favorite. This is a great Sci-fi show that is clean, adventurous, and has a occassional twist in history. At times it’s just thrilling enough and each ending is different. It is a must watch.
  6. Great British Baking Show –
    • Who doesn’t love food? I’m a bit of a foodie, but baking is really my outlet. I enjoy watching this show because I always get new flavor ideas, learn more about baking, and it’s a comforting show for me. Unlike American competitions where each person is very mindful of their own interests, the contestants on The GBBS are very aware that everyone needs to finish. They show great sportsmanship and each person is helped to finish before presenting. It is an educational, clean, family friendly show that highlights what competition could be.
  7. Planet Earth- 
    • I love David Attenborough. The day he stops doing nature documentaries will be the saddest day of my life. His voice is soothing and he does a great job showing emotion when necessary. Not only are these shows clean and wholesome but they are educational and also informative. It is something every child could watch and every adult enjoy.

Over all – UK television has been producing clean and wholesome shows for a long time. I’ve been hard pressed to find anything coarse or inappropriate within their shows. I’m always looking for more so if you have a recommendation please leave a comment.

Work

9 Tips to Increase Your Performance as a Server

Previously I have discussed a few tips to increase server performance. While these still hold true – I’m going to expound on them. I work as a manager in the restaurant industry, these are based on things that I see my own staff doing or things I have discussed with them. Not only will these tips impress your manager but they are sure to impress your guests as well.

  1. Pay attention to the details –
    • Details are everything when you are serving a guest. They make the difference between having someone send something back to the kitchen or them loving the dish.
    • Attention to details encompasses knowing:
    • what ingredients the kitchen uses
    • checking your section for wobbling tables
    • making sure your station is filled and ready to go
    • doing your side-work properly so you set the next shift up for success
    • clearing the table when ready (this is not just the busser’s job)
  2. A great server Introduces themselves –
    • I had one of my servers recently tell me that they didn’t want to introduce themselves because it felt a bit much like working at Chili’s. I told them – You should introduce yourself because it gives a warm and welcoming feeling to your guests. This is the basis of starting a connection to up-selling.
    • When someone is standing overtop of you – you are already feeling a bit prickled ( you are uncomfortable because you are placed in a vulnerable position), the introduction makes you feel a bit more at ease.
  3. Smile –
    • Smiling does a lot. I’m not talking about looking like the Cheshire Cat from Alice in Wonderland but you do need to smile when you take care of people. It makes them feel important and that you are there to help them.
  4. Preferences, Sensitivities, and Allergies –
    • It seems like everyone has an allergy of some sort. I tell my servers when they introduce themselves always start with “Welcome to ____________, my name is Hannah. I’ll be taking care of you tonight. Are there any preferences, sensitivities, or allergies I need to be aware of?” This immediately sets the tone for guests. They know you, they can trust you, and you have attention to detail. I have seen an increase in my servers tips when they use this on tables vs when they don’t. To be clear – a preference is like a diet – the customer is adhering to it but will not have an allergic reaction, a sensitivity – they may have a minor reaction but it won’t be bad – they can handle cross-contaimination, an allergy – they cannot have any cross-contaimination – it will result in a severe allergic reaction. This needs to be stated on the ticket to the kitchen as well and the manager should be made aware.
  5. Know your menu –
    • Make sure that you as the server know the menu. You know what is going into the dishes, what the kitchen can change. Be aware of the time frame – if it’s a rush – the kitchen may not want to change it. Make sure you know the bar menu. If you are still learning that’s fine, always say “I’m not sure but let me check for you.” It tells them that you don’t know but you are willing to go the extra mile to find out.
  6. Mis en place –
    • I know I have mentioned it before but it bears mentioning again. ALWAYS make sure your table is prepped. This means dropping dessert spoons as soon as they order, dropping a bowl for those seafood shells, or getting a chiller set up for white wine. The bussers/runners don’t have time for it and it is your job as a server. These little things are again – attention to details that make the difference between you and other servers.
  7. Good Wine Service –
    • This is more important to me because I live and work in California. This means that almost everyone out here knows about wine and how it should be served. That being said – good wine service starts from the beginning. You should always show the label and the bottle (cupping the bottom with your hand) to the person who ordered. When they say it’s alright hold the bottom and cut below the lip. Place the trash in your apron (never on the table) – do not twist the bottle when you cut it and never hold it by the neck (even when you are removing the cork). Pour a taste for the person who ordered. When they give the nod – you can pour clockwise, ending with that same person. Place the bottle and the cork on the table (or in the chiller if it’s a white). If you are nervous about the whole process and they are quite – ask them questions that force long answers “Where are you from?” “How do you like the area?” etc. It forces them to talk and takes the pressure off you.
  8. Know How to Up-sell –
    • You don’t need to pressure anyone to buy anything, but you should know how to up-sell. If they buy two glasses of the same wine, say “I noticed you want two glasses of the same wine, would you be interested in a bottle?” When it comes to dessert – always drop the menu with a recommendation. “The Churros are my favorite – they are like eating a baby angel.” I know it sounds weird but it sticks with people. When you describe the food – describe it in such a way that it makes their mouth water. Use words like:
      • decadent
      • moist
      • full of spice
      • hints of _______
    • basically you need to act like you are a Food Network star describing the food. That’s how you sell it. People want to know what’s the best. The items that I eat all the time I say are “_______________ soul food” (Insert whatever cultural restaurant you work for – example “Mexican Soul Food”) People know terms like that and they love hearing it.
    • You eat first with your ears, then your eyes, finally you eat with your mouth.
  9. Check the Food-
    • Make sure when the food comes out it is up to their liking. As soon as it’s dropped “Everything looks ok?” and after two bites “How is it tasting?” These prevent a guest from sitting there waiting like an idiot for the server to come back, just to say it was bad.
    • If they order a steak always – ALWAYS – ask them to cut into it to make sure the temperature is correct. Wait until they have done so and it is good before you walk away.

The reality is small things like these, which might seem large at the moment, make all the difference to your guests. They are bread and butter of a servers life. These will make your guests happier – they are more likely to return to you and that restaurant, they will increase your tips, and they will increase your standing with your manager.

Remember Good service isn’t an accident – Good service is on purpose.

Have tips or tricks? Please Share! 

 

Children · Daily Life

Childhood Consequences

I don’t have children. Don’t let that stop you from reading thought.

I’ve heard many people say that those who don’t have children shouldn’t have an opinion about parenting and the techniques utilized. They say that those who have no children know nothing. Let me be clear why I’m qualified for this post. I have 7 nieces and nephews, I have nannied for several years, I have grown up watching other peoples children and their parenting styles and I choose not to have children at this point in my life. I also believe that I’m qualified to speak on this topic because I choose not to have children.

I choose not to have children not because I dislike children but it’s a huge investment of time and money. It’s an investment that I’m not ready to make. People always say that someone who didn’t do what they did or the way the did it shouldn’t speak on an issue but there are many ways to do one thing. And just because someone failed at something the first time shouldn’t disqualify them. No one is perfect.

Many parents no longer teach their child to behave. There is no discipline. The issue with this is that then the child becomes an unreasonable little monster. You know what’s super funny to me, everytime I am around a child who won’t listen to their parents (provided I know the child) I will set a boundary for them. They never cross it with me. I have looked at children and told them “You will not get Ice Cream whine one more time.” It’s incredible – they clam right up and pause before they say anything more. I’m not saying that parents need to use force or they need to start spanking. What I’m talking about is basic discipline – there are consequences and rewards for every action.

Here are some ideas to get them started:

  • Every action needs a CONSISTENT consequence.
  • Every consequence must be reachable no matter where you are located.
  • Every good deed needs to be noticed and praised or rewarded.
  • Every reward must be tangible no matter where you are located.

It’s really very simple when you think about it. It’s similar to when you have to work, you show up late – there is a consequence. You work hard and do your job properly – you have a reward (maybe not right away but you still have a job and that is a reward).

The consequences can be something as simple as standing in the corner, or be as much as taking away something. But you have to do it every time. Without consistency, you cannot have respect, from either your child or other people.

Here’s the basic memo – the lack of parenting in the world has lead to an increase in entitled little monsters. Don’t add to the burdens of the world, take time to be a parent and actually invest in something that will stay with your children forever. Teach them to have manners and discipline.