Brian Brown Nebraska Realty Ad

Support the population-we™ Movement here...

Monday, February 23, 2015

pop-we Dinner Club Reviews Jim and Jennie’s Greek Village

Opa! population-we™ (pop-we) foodie Randy decided we would have Greek this month at Jim and Jennie’s Greek Village located at 3026 N 90th Street in Omaha, NE. Established in 1985, Jim and Jennie’s has been serving up authentic Grecian food in this strip mall. In 2013, Jim and Jennie's was even named one of Best of Omaha by Omaha Magazine.

Jim and Jennie's Chicken Gyro.
When you walk through the doors you are standing in the dining area where you are greeted by one of the waitresses to seat you. Jim and Jennie’s is made up of two small dining areas: the first, when you immediately walk in; and the other, takes you past the kitchen immediately to the left until you arrive in the other small dining area. The restaurant's right wall is filled with mirrors and along the half wall, that separates the two dining areas, are Grecian statues as well as other artifacts. No matter if you're dining in for lunch or dinner, you will always spot Jim and Jennie working at the restaurant too.

Tonight I decided on trying the Lamb Kabob. The lamb was tender and cooked with a little pink in the center, which is perfect for me. The meal is served with rice, Greek potatoes, dinner roll and your choice of soup or salad. The rice cooked to perfection, but had little taste. As for the Greek potatoes, they were delicious, as they were cooked with a little olive oil and herbs. I loved the salad with the Greek olive, feta cheese and homemade dressing. The dinner roll; however, I never saw. Randy ordered the calamari for an appetizer, which is served with pita bread and a garlic lemon butter dipping sauce. Jim and Jennie's calamari is always well-seasoned and cooked to perfection with light breading. In my opinion, this calamari is one of the best in Omaha!

After compiling the surveys from the other foodies the pop-we Dinner Club gives Jim and Jennie’s Greek Village a 3.34 star average on a scale of 1-5.

Atmosphere/Decor – 3.20

Cleanliness – 3.40

Wait Staff – 3.20

Menu – 3.20

Food Presentation – 3.20

Food Portions – 3.7

Food Taste – 3.40

Cost (was the cost worth meal?) – 3.40

Noise Level – 3.30

Overall Experience – 3.40

For more information regarding directions, menu items, visit Jim and Jennie's website.

Fellow population-we™ readers, if you've been to Jim and Jennie’s leave us a comment and tell us what you thought?

Want to do this yourself? To review how to start your own dinner club, visit our January post about doing just that. Remember it is a template; tweak it to fit you and your friends' tastes. pop-we Dinner Club: good food…good friends…good times.

-population-we™ blog post by Brian Brown
© 2015 population-we, LLC 
If you enjoyed this post, make sure to leave a comment, 'Pin' or 'Like' it.

Pin It

Monday, February 16, 2015

pop-we Reviews Richard Jaffe's Inner Peace and Happiness Reflections to Grow Your Soul

I overheard an adult say that what mattered to her at that stage of her life was peace. I visited her home in my late grade school years and shortly after turning 18. At both of those periods, her life seemed to be peaceful to me as her financial situation was comfortable and her home life seemed good. Yet, I know she had been through a lot of pain in prior years. It is not always easy to pinpoint a period time when an event happened in my mind. The way her comment struck me, I think it was the first visit in my later grade school years. I do not think peace was something I thought about in my late grade school years although I can recall feeling like I was almost floating on air after confessing my sins that were pretty minor to the Catholic priest during what I think were my grade school years or possibly my seventh grade year on at least on occasion while attending Holy Name Grade School in Omaha, NE. By the time I was a high school graduate, I knew what it was to long for peace. In the years that followed high school, I have known sweet peace and the absence of peace. Sometimes I have felt peace that surpasses understanding. I thank God for the blessings of peace he has given me.

After reading from, “Inner Peace and Happiness Reflections to Grow Your Soul” by Richard Jaffe, I have reflected further on the role of peace and happiness. I do think that real happiness is often accompanied by peace. I know there are a lot of counterfeits posing as peace and happiness that often have dire consequences.

Jaffe shares his emotions in verse about what has brought him happiness and peace in this life and encourages the reader to connect with their own sources of peace and happiness as they read his poems. While I may appreciate diverse types of poetry, the two types of poems that I seek out the most are uplifting poems and whimsical poems. I am a fan of Helen Steiner Rice who is known as the "Poet Laureate of Inspirational Verse” and feel that Jaffe offers similar positive messages. I believe it is best to fill up on edifying verses. Jaffe’s works have also done good for my heart and soul. I became aware of his work through google+ as he has a group for poets to post their uplifting pieces. From what I have experienced at the group, he is very supportive of poets.

The introduction by Jaffe shares background about his life and breaks down the stages of his life and how this applies to the sections of his book. In my study of Literature, I was taught that it is important to understand an author’s background in order to better understand his work so I am grateful for his insights as they shed so much light on his poetry. Many of the poems would stand alone with a strong message without the additional background.

The majority of the poems speak of love. The poetry attests to the fact that lost love and also the loss of a loved one who passes away can hurt so much at times because love is worth it. It encourages one to take an inward journey and to have appropriate love of self.

In an excerpt of his poem “Tapestry of Life” he shares,

“For once we love our own soul

As much as the one we desperately hope to find,

We build the inner strength and confidence

That leaves empty loneliness behind.”

Jaffe also encourages the romantic love of his life to also love herself in more than one poem. This is an excerpt from his poem titled, “Everlasting Friendship.”

“But if you learn to love yourself

The Way that you love me,

Your soul will find an inner peace

And a best friend for eternity.

I enrolled in a Literature course a couple decades ago expecting a professor who would further open the literary world to my twenty something mind. Instead, I had a cynical professor who scoffed at short stories and poetry, which were both the crux of the course. There was no indication that he was taking this approach to get us to argue the opposite side. Regarding love poems written by men, he said they were only about physical beauty. In Jaffe’s poems, love is paired in poems with trust and friendship. The poems speak of love that is more than just a physical attraction. Emotional bonds are spiritual bonds are found in the love of which he speaks.

Jaffe and his wife came from good homes where they were taught values and themes of passing this on along with their religious traditions to their children are present in some of the poems. He writes of what he cherishes about his wife and each of his children. He refers to in one poem to his wife as his angel as he asks to also be her angel. He relates that his wife is a compassionate woman. He also tells of the special natures of his children including an animal loving daughter. To me, this is what a happy family looks like!

There are reflections on death and loss and on making a difference in the world.

Each poem has been carefully crafted. As a successful businessman, Jaffe may not be a typical poet. He did spend one year working on his poetry and his golf game. Knowing that walking and exercise can help one have inspiration, I thought this was a great combination.

I have contemplated what it would be like to know everything and have no one to share the knowledge. I cannot imagine a state of complete happiness where you are not able to share with others. Jaffe has truly born his heart and shared what he values most with all the readers.

I have found that recalling my happiest memories are a great source of strength. I have gone to that happy place again and again since I began reading, “Inner Peace and Happiness Reflections to Grow Your Soul.”

-population-we™ blog post by Barb Bohan
© 2015 population-we, LLC 
If you enjoyed this post, make sure to leave a comment, 'Pin' or 'Like' it.

Pin It

Monday, February 9, 2015

I Heart Celebrity Causes Highlights Steve King's Heifer International

As a society we like our celebrities and tend to support the causes they endorse with this status. Our celebrities are those that entertain and inspire us such as those that act in the movies, on television and the stage, our favorite musicians, athletes from our favorite teams or provide national pride representing at the Olympics, the authors of our favorite literary works and those that provide contributions in the world of art. Each month in this population-we™ (pop-we) series, I Heart Celebrity Causes, a celebrity will be chosen and the cause that they promote will be looked at.
I Heart Celebrity Causes!

This February is the eighth installment of I Heart Celebrity Causes the focus is on author Stephen King and Heifer International. King is best known for his work in the horror genre but he has also written fantasy, science fiction and suspense. He has 54 novels to his credit including seven he wrote under the pen name Richard Bachman. Starting with his first book "Carrie" more than 350 million copies have been sold. Many have also been adapted into movies and the author admits his favorite three are "Stand by Me," "The Shawshank Redemption" and "The Mist." "The Running Man," was one of his Richard Bachman books, which made it to the big screen.

Heifer International is one of the primary charities that King has lent his celebrity to. Founded nearly 70 years ago by American farmer and aid worker Dan West, the main goal of the organization is to end world hunger and poverty. Working to help refugees of the Spanish Civil War; West quickly realized more help could be provided by giving an actual cow rather than just a ration of milk.

Now Heifer International empowers families and helps communities by providing animals which provide both food and income. Areas that had a long history of poverty are able to sustain agriculture and commerce as products like: milk, eggs, honey and wool can be traded or sold. That income gives the communities the financial base to fund small businesses and build schools.

Animals provide the foundation and those that receive animals agree to pass along the offspring to others in need. On average nine generations of animals can be found; while in some areas 22 generations of animals provided by Heifer International can be traced. This cycle of positive change is paid forward through out the community.

Every Heifer project starts by laying 12 cornerstones or solid principles that lay the framework for change and sustainable development. Those 12 are:

  • Passing on the Gift,
  • Accountability,
  • Sharing and Giving,
  • Sustainability and Self-Reliance,
  • Improved Animal Management,
  • Nutrition and Income,
  • Gender and Family Focus,
  • Genuine Need and Justice,
  • Improving the Environment,
  • Full Participation,
  • Training and Education, and
  • Spirituality.

This helps provide lasting change as more than 22.6 million families in over 30 countries word-wide have been lifted out of hunger and poverty.

The organization has a gift catalog which gives people the option to purchase a share of animal or to donate the full price of a goat, heifer, sheep, water buffalo or other. There are also other options to donate toward assistance to promote women's empowerment, support sustainable farming and provide basic needs. If interested, the gift catalog can be found online at Heifer International.

Most importantly, Bravo to pop-we I Heart Celebrity Causes--Stephen King--for his Heifer International efforts!

-population-we™ blog post by John Bohan
© 2015 population-we, LLC 
If you enjoyed this post, make sure to leave a comment, 'Pin' or 'Like' it.

Pin It

Monday, February 2, 2015

pop-we Dinner Club Reviews Louie's Wine Dive

This month population-we™ (pop-we) foodie Marv decided we would try a dive, Louie’s Wine Dive, located at 1692 Wright Plaza in Omaha, NE. Louie’s Wine Dive is a chain located throughout the Midwest: Des Moines, Omaha, Kansas City, Maukee and Minneapolis. The location in west Omaha, is owned and operated by Jamie Burrow, a former University of Nebraska football player, who spent 12 years in sales before opening Louie’s Wine Dive.
Louie's Wine Dive Teriyaki Turkey Burger.

When you walk in you notice the large bar in the middle of the room with the bookcase liquor shelves going up to the ceiling. Behind the bar you can see into the kitchen, above the kitchen counter L-o-u-i-e-’-s is spelled out in red lights. On the right side of the room there is a small stage for live music on Sunday evenings, a schedule of events can be found at The Dive In Room. Keeping with the dive theme, the dining room is comprised of mix matched chairs. My first thought was this is pretty cool and unique; however, by the time we were done with our meal my thought had changed. After two hours, my chair was very uncomfortable.

The menu at Louie’s Wine Dive has many fun and interesting sounding dishes. I decided on the Pan Roasted Chicken, which is roasted in herb butter and served with crispy potato wedges, seasonal vegetables and pan jus. When the dish comes out the chicken is piled on the potatoes to make it look like a huge serving. A little misleading, but still filling. I enjoyed this comfort food dish; from the flavor of the chicken too the veggies and the potatoes complimented nicely. Louie's menu features many gluten free entrees or entrees that can be made gluten free. As with their name there is an extensive wine menu as well as several bottles that are exclusive to Louie’s Wine Dive. For details, visit Louie's Wine List.

After compiling the surveys from the other foodies the pop-we Dinner Club gives Louie’s Wine Dive a 3.55 star average on a scale of 1-5.

Atmosphere/Decor – 3.92

Cleanliness – 3.83

Wait Staff – 2.92

Menu – 3.33

Food Presentation – 3.92

Food Portions – 3.92

Food Taste – 3.75

Cost (was the cost worth meal?) – 3.17

Noise Level – 3.33

Overall Experience – 3.5

For more information regarding directions, menu items, visit Louie’s Wine Dive website.

Fellow population-we™ readers, if you've been to Louie’s Wine Dive leave us a comment and tell us what you thought?

Want to do this yourself? To review how to start your own dinner club, visit our January post about doing just that. Remember it is a template; tweak it to fit you and your friends' tastes. pop-we Dinner Club: good food…good friends…good times.

-population-we™ blog post by Brian Brown
© 2015 population-we, LLC 
If you enjoyed this post, make sure to leave a comment, 'Pin' or 'Like' it.

Pin It