Top 10 Reasons We Loved 2011!


2010 was a new beginning… preparations, marriage and festive occasions…

2011 was the year of vacations… Here are the top 10 reasons we loved 2011:

1- Starting off with the 2010-2011 new year vacation. We went to Philadelphia, had fun in Atlantic City, and spent our new year at Buddha Bar in Washington, DC.

Art Museum - Philly

Atlantic City

Washington, DC

2- In March 2011, I visited my family in Dearborn, MI. We also went on a road trip to Chicago, IL where we spent a few days enjoying what the city got to offer.

Chicago. IL

Chicago. IL

3- In April 2011, my husband and I celebrated our first year anniversary in Punta Cana, the easternmost province of the Dominican Republic.

Punta Cana

Punta Cana

Punta Cana

4- In July 2011, we planned a New York Trip with our friends. We first went to Philadelphia then took the bus and spent a few days in New York city. We went to Broadway and saw “The Addams Family” and got Brook Shields autograph.

NYC

Brook Shields

Broadway

5- In August 2011, my mother came to visit during the month of Ramadan. Her vacation was a breath of fresh air for us. We enjoyed her company.

Rochester, MN

6- In December 2011, we planned a Florida trip to visit my husbands uncle and enjoy what Florida got to offer. We went to St. Augustine,  the oldest city and port in the US. We then headed to Orlando and experienced the magical Magic Kingdom and Epcot.

St. Augustine, FL

Magic Kingdom

7- Aside from vacations, 2011 gave us the opportunity to bond and get to know each other more and more.

 

8- Along with bonding, in 2011 we maintained our health. We tried to eat right and exercise.

9- In 2011 bonding and health were also accompanied by intellectual stimuli. We took care of our mental wellness. We inaugurated www.cognitivedimension.wordpress.com to keep the ideas flowing and discussions happening.

10- In addition to the vacations, bonding, physical and mental health we got each other. And that is the greatest reason to love 2011.

— Rasha Nasser Khalil

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The Season of ‘Tis and ‘Twas


Santa Claus

Santa.

Ever  since I was a kid and like millions if not billions around the world, when we hear the word “Santa” we automatically draw this visual image of an older man, heavy built, a white beard, high rosy cheek bones, and eye glasses on. But most importantly, what really makes him stand out is his uniform. Just like superman or batman or any other superhero, we can easily identify them simply by their uniform. While most of the superheroes prefer to wear tights, we see that Santa Claus has chosen a thicker uniform, and that’s because he lives in a place where no man can survive, “the north pole”. If it’s freezing in the summer time, you can only imagine how cold it gets in the winter time.

While most of the superheroes claim to provide protection to everyone on earth all-year round, we hear of Santa whose only purpose is to deliver toys in one night. That to me, is a lot of work; Not only that, he also has to make sure that only those that deserve a toy would get one, and those that were naughty shouldn’t.  It is really hard for him to come down the chimney to begin with, but now imagine he only has to leave one toy for one of two kids in a household, “the good boy”. I know the second kid will side with the Grinch, that’s what I would do if I were him.

The Grinch

But that’s not the point, the main question I have always had is: What does Santa do when he is delivering toys in places where his “freezing proof” uniform is now acting more like a “Surround Sauna”? Does he have “Santa shorts” uniform with a sleeveless “Santa Jacket” that is not made of fleece? Do kids leave him milk and cookies in those countries or maybe he would rather have a refreshing glass of lemonade instead?

If he is flying over Washington DC, will we see the US Air Force scrambling a couple of jets escorting him away from the White House?

I am not sure what the answers are, but would love to hear some suggestions.

Raghid Khalil