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Deer-Vehicle Safety Information

13 Nov

There was much discussion at the office yesterday about the deer incident. There were quite a few who had experienced their own “close encounters” with Bambi’s relatives. Many wondered how – or if – you can avoid something like that.

The majority of deer-vehicle accidents occur in the month of November. Many of you will be hitting the road next week for Thanksgiving and I want to share some tips that I found that may help you should you find yourself in the middle of a staring contest with one of these really, REALLY cute, but dangerous animals.

I knew we had escaped a serious accident, but didn’t realize just how blessed we were until I began to research it. Just last year, seven people in Indiana died when their minivan hit a deer and then either stopped or slowed. The minivan was then rear-ended by a tractor-trailer resulting in the death of seven of the 10 people in the van.

There are 1 million deer-vehicle accidents in the United States each year resulting in 200 deaths and 10,000 personal injuries. Mid-October thru December is mating season for deer. As my co-worker, the hunter, says, “the deer get a little crazy and run all over the place.” Basically, their hormones are going wild and they can’t think straight.

Here are some tips from Geico, State Farm, AAA Travel Club, and the University of North Carolina that I hope will help keep you and your family safe this Fall as you travel the roads:

  • Wear your seatbelt!! The family of seven who died in Indiana were not wearing seatbelts. Many injuries and deaths could be prevented with that one simple act.
  • Pay attention to the deer crossing signs and slow down when you see them – they’re not there for decoration. :) The same is true for areas where you’ve seen deer before – slow down.
  • Deer are most active near roadsides during dawn and dusk hours, so be especially alert then.
  • Deer rarely travel alone. If you see one, assume there are others.
  • Watch for the shine of their white eyes on the roadside – be alert.
  • Use your high beams, when possible, because it will allow you to see further off the side of the road.
  • If you are on a multi-lane highway, driving in the center lane places more distance between you and the shoulder of the road where deer may be grazing or standing.

Once you encounter a deer in the road, these tips may help minimize damage or injury:

  • Contrary to instinct, do not swerve. Swerving may force you into the path of another vehicle resulting in an even greater accident – and is no guarantee you will avoid the deer.
  • When you spot a deer in your path, slow down. Apply steady, solid pressure to your brakes, but do not brake so hard that you lose control of the vehicle. Also, slamming on the brakes may cause the car behind you to run into you.
  • If it looks as if you are going to hit the deer and you can remember to, release brake pressure or even accelerate slightly just before impact. This will raise the front end of your car, hopefully preventing the deer from coming in your windshield.

Once you’ve hit a deer, pull your car off the road as soon as you can safely do so. Call 911 for assistance. If the deer is still in the road, do not approach it as it may be injured and in shock and could attack, kick, or injure you. Once the officer arrives he/she will know how to handle the deer.

And that, my friends, is your public safety announcement for the month of November. :) Please be sure to share this information with any teenagers in your home – their inexperience behind the wheel tends to make for a bad combination when encountering deer on the highway. Here’s to safe travel and deer-free roads for all of us!

Rachel

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A Weekend in Atlanta

7 May

Yesterday was a yucky day.  I woke up with a headache that only got worse as the day progressed.  I ended up taking my migraine medicine and a long nap.  Woke up and still had it, but – thankfully – it eased up around 5:00 pm.  I hate those things and am SO grateful I do not get them as often as I used to.  Headaches are evil.  :)

Barry and I went to the Chick-fil-A Leadercast in Atlanta this weekend.  It’s a one-day conference on leadership and some of the speakers this year were Andy Stanley, John Maxwell, Urban Meyer, Soledad O’Brien, Patrick Lencioni, Marcus Buckingham, and Tim Tebow.  This year’s theme was Choice, specifically how we can “make choices that strengthen our family, impact our workplace, influence our communities, and leave the world a better place.”  Sounds like something we would all like to do, right?

I’m a quotes gal.  I love a good quote.  I have a journal filled with some of my favorite quotes and a page on this site with some of my favs, too.  The speakers at the Leadercast were excellent and gave some great nuggets to think about.  Because my brain is still a little fuzzy from the migraine meds, I thought I would share some of the best quotes from the event:

If we have to know without a doubt that the choices we are making are the perfect ones, we risk never making any choices at all. – Marcus Buckingham (I’m pretty sure he was speaking directly to me when he said this.  Never mind the other 4,999 people in the room.)

If everything is important, then nothing is. – Patrick Lencioni

We all know of people who thought they could do it (whatever “it” is) tomorrow.  We have all procrastinated in such a way, and often to our personal regret… So often that better time either never comes or really isn’t better or more appropriate after all. – Tim Tebow (Procrastination brought on by my want-to-be-perfectionist tendencies is an issue for me so this hit home.)

We don’t grow on accident; we grow on purpose. – John Maxwell

Don’t worry about what you can’t control. We can control our attitude, effort, how we treat others – that’s what we should worry about. – Tim Tebow
Most of us say our family is the most important thing in our life, yet we spend most of our time planning, strategizing, etc. at work and not at home. You need to put the same effort into your family that you give to your job. – Patrick Lencioni (Ouch, right??)

The highlight of the day was when they brought out a girl with a life-threatening illness whose wish has been to meet Tim Tebow and surprised her with his appearance!  She was overjoyed!  Say what you want about Tim, he’s the real deal – he’s not faking it, the guy’s as genuine as they come and such a great role model for kids (and some adults!).

While, I’m thinking about – we stayed at the Courtyard Atlanta Downtown on Carnegie Way.  It was a great hotel, the price was extremely reasonable, the staff was friendly, and room was fabulous.  The room was larger than my first apartment.  :)  I would highly recommend it if you need a room near the Georgia World Congress anytime soon.

Have a great Monday!
♥ Rachel

Review: The Moderne Hotel NYC

3 Feb

We’ll just go ahead and finish out this week with yet another post about NYC, if you can stand it.  :)

For our one night in NYC, we stayed at The Moderne Hotel located at 55th and Broadway in midtown, just four blocks south of Central Park.  It’s not your traditional hotel, but is a small, boutique style property with just 35 rooms.  The decor was, well, modern – as you would expect with a name like The Moderne Hotel, huh?

Photo Source: ModerneHotelNYC.com

Pros

  1. Very affordable for NYC at $159/night.
  2. Super comfortable bed and pillows.
  3. Great location (within walking distance of Central Park, Museum of Modern Art, Carnegie Hall, shops such as Sur la table, Lee’s Art Shop (which is a FANTASTIC store for anyone with a creative/artistic side), Mackenzie-Childs, and restaurants (famous Carnegie Deli) and bakeries on every corner.
  4. Staff was very friendly, helpful, and responsive.  After fighting with the bathroom light switch for a few minutes, I called the front desk to find out how to use the silly thing.  Within minutes, someone came up there to show me.  Before you laugh, Jennifer couldn’t figure it out, either!  :)  It was a very tricky light switch!

Cons

  1. Super tiny room.  Since my sister stayed the night with me, it was a bit crowded.  Probably would have been fine for just one person.  Because the window and air conditioner/heater was behind the bed, the bed sort of sat in the middle of the room making it feel a bit awkward.
  2. Bathroom was not very functional with a wall-mounted sink plus a shower that was not separated from the sink and toilet by a wall, piece of glass or even a curtain – it was all just one open room.  After the shower, everything in the bathroom was either wet or very damp.  There was virtually no surface area for toiletries and such.
  3. Less than ideal lighting conditions with one somewhat dim overhead light, a desk lamp, and a nightstand lamp.  Maybe it’s just a sign of my old age that I need brighter lights!
  4. Loud dripping noise above us that went on all night.  Assuming this had something to do with it being an older building, old pipes, maybe something like that??
Here’s a few pictures I took while there.  All the hallways had this wallpaper.  Some floors had red, some had blue, some had yellow, but they all had the picture frame design.  Very different and pretty cool.

And this was our room with a view of some stairs and a few other buildings.  You can see the AC unit behind the bed which pushed the bed out toward the middle of the room allowing for minimal walkways.

Another angle of the room from the corner where the desk was located.  That was one seriously comfortable bed.  Just the right amount of smooshiness, soft bed linens, and a fluffy bed cover.

And here’s the unique bathroom.  I thought it might have been a handicapped bathroom, but it seems that all of them were this way.

This is the sum total of the surface space we had to place our toiletries.  I had to move all of these items and sit them on top of the AC unit just to make room for our stuff.  You couldn’t sit things on the floor because the floor ended up getting pretty wet during the shower.

A friend asked me if I would stay there again and I said no.  The more I think about it, though, I think I would change my answer to maybe.  I wouldn’t mind paying a little more for something more traditional (I love my Marriotts and Hyatts and Hiltons, etc.!), but for the location and the price, it was a decent place to stay.  Everyone knows NYC lodging is pricey, so I don’t think this was bad for the $$.  Being the connoisseur of fine hotels that I am (ha ha!), I would give them exactly 2.5 stars (out of 5).

It’s Friday, ya’ll!  Have a wonderful weekend!!

♥ Rachel

Isabelle: One Happy Dog

2 Feb

I introduced you to my sister’s dog, Isabelle, on Monday, and since then, I’ve received several requests for more Isabelle photos from all you dog lovers to there.  She is the sweetest dog – so happy to see you (like a lot of dogs) and just wants to be near someone all the time.  As the contractor who is working on Jenn’s kitchen said, “that’s one happy dog.”  He was so right, she is a happy little (big) girl.

She tried to lick me to death (and I can’t stand dogs licking my face – yuck!), so she would follow me around licking the tops of my feet, which tickled like crazy.  She’s just like a big, fluffy, stuffed animal – that moves…and eats…and romps through the house.   :)

So, here’s Isabelle in all her glory.

Dogs are miracles with paws.
– Attributed to Susan Ariel Rainbow Kennedy

Look at those paws! They're huge and adorable all at the same time.

Happiness is a warm puppy.
– Charles M. Schulz

This is Isabelle and Jackson. I just love that face and all that hair!

We long for an affection altogether ignorant of our faults.
Heaven has accorded this to us in the uncritical canine attachment.
– George Eliot

Bailey and Isabelle. They kind of look a like, no?

Scratch a dog and you’ll find a permanent job.
– Franklin P. Jones

Bail and Isabelle again. You would think she wouldn't like this, but she loved every second of it.

You think dogs will not be in heaven?
I tell you, they will be there long before any of us.
– Robert Louis Stevenson

She'll let you hold her like a baby. A very large baby. :)

So that’s the Best of Isabelle – January 2012.  You can’t help but fall in love with her.  And what I love most about her is how happy she makes my sister and her family.

I talk to him when I’m lonesome like; and I’m sure he understands.  When he looks at me so attentively, and gently licks my hands; then he rubs his nose on my tailored clothes, but I never say naught thereat.  For the good Lord knows I can buy more clothes, but never a friend like that. – W. Dayton Wedgefarth

Happy Thursday Folks!
♥ Rachel

Home, Happy and Tired

1 Feb

We had a whirlwind day in NYC  yesterday.  It began at 8:00 (well, actually it began much earlier than that with a dripping something or other above our room that kept waking Jenn and I up throughout the night – ugghhhh) with two meetings in separate locations, two taxi rides (one of which nearly scared the grits out of me), catching a flight to Atlanta at 2:00 and then another to Chattanooga at 6:00.

Got home a little while ago and I am plum worn out.  :)  But in a good way.

I say all of this to say – this is going to be a lame, short, pitiful blog post because my brain is numb and my body is tired.  I’m going to put them both to rest in my own bed and wake up refreshed and alert tomorrow to finish out a great week!

Hope you have a terrific Wednesday!
♥ Rachel

Monday in NYC

31 Jan

Feeling great, but realizing how my energy levels have really sunk since treatment.  All the walking we’ve done the past couple of days is catching up with me.  :)  But it was worth it.  We had a good day!

This is Isabelle.

Isabelle belongs to Jennifer, Bob, Jackson, and Bailey.  Or maybe I should say, they belong to her.  Along with every other person she meets.  We think we adopt pets.  Isabelle seems to adopt humans.  She is quick to make new friends and wasted no time becoming my buddy, which I loved!  She’s just like a big teddy bear.

She is the sweetest wheaton terrior I’ve ever met.  Well, she’s the only wheaton terrior I’ve ever met, but that’s beside the point, right?

I have some other cute pictures with her that I will share with you after I get home, but I wanted you to see what a sweet little thing I’ve been hanging out with.

We headed into the city yesterday and met up with my colleagues.  Then, we had the most wonderful, fantastic, out-of-this-world delicious dinner that I will also tell you about later this week.  I ate things I’ve never eaten before and loved every bite of it.  Well, almost every bite.  I I can’t say that I loved the Barbecue Oysters, but they weren’t bad.  :)

Got to get some rest before meetings and travel tomorrow.  Hope you all have a fantastic Tuesday!
♥ Rachel

Where Am I?

30 Jan

Thanks to a business trip to NYC today and tomorrow, I spent the weekend in this cute little town:

I’m visiting one of my sisters (Jennifer) and her family, visiting the firehall where my nephew Jackson is a volunteer firefighter, watching other my nephew, Bailey, play lacrosse, shopping downtown with my sister, and eating brunch at Meil’s in Stockton, NJ, which was wonderful by the way.  I was so hungry I forgot to take pictures of the delicious potato pancakes and broccoli, bacon and swiss quiche I had.  Trust me when I tell you it was yummy!

Today, we are heading into the NYC to meet up with two awesome people from my office for some meetings with our ad agency, dinner at, what looks like a fantastic restaurant, and a night in cool hotel!  Should be a great day!!

I’m so thankful for this opportunity to visit family while getting some work done, too, and am especially grateful that I feel well enough to be traveling.  It’s the first time I’ve traveled alone since “the cancer” arrived, so I was a little anxious about it, but the flights and everything went well.

This is a short post and not much in the way of inspiration or encouragement for you, but I wanted to touch base with all five of you who read each day {grin} you and let you know why it’s slim pickins’ today.

Just so you don’t go away completely empty-handed, here’s a little motivation for you on this Monday:

Source: Pinterest

Whatever you have going on today, whatever items are crowding your to-do list, just stop for a second, take a deep breath, breathe all the goodness of the day in and love it all out.  Everything will be fine.  :)

♥ Rachel