be nice and polite (but firm)
ask questions but don't create drama (hysterical shrieking is the fastest way to send hospital employees scattering from your room like startled rabbits)
be helpful but don't get in the way
a good bribe* never hurts.
Two large boxes (always bring sets of two, label one for the night shift and the other for the day shift), carefully lined with wax paper, filled with homemade cookies, with a little thank you message on top. I'm not saying it's the reason I got internet access in our room, but I'm not saying it isn't either.
Milk Chocolate Cookies from Martha Stewart's CookiesThese are so delicious and chocolate-y. I'm not a huge chocolate person, but these were amazing enough to win me over. I can imagine jazzing them up with nuts or white chocolate chunks, or dried cherries, or coconut, but they are perfectly wonderful as is.
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
8 ounces good quality milk chocolate (half coarsely chopped for melted, half cut into 1/4" chunks)
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
** Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt in a bowl and set aside.
** Melt the coarsely chopped chocolate with the butter and then allow it to cool. (You can either use a double boiler for this, or you can simply use the microwave, if you're lucky enough to have a kitchen large enough to accommodate one, unlike me.)
** Beat the sugar, eggs and vanilla in the mixer. Pour in the melted chocolate, then fold in the flour until just combined. Stir in the chocolate chunks.
** Set the oven to preheat to 325 degrees. Chill the dough for about half an hour (Martha doesn't mention this, but I found it really helpful) and then use a 1 1/2 inch ice cream scoop (or a large spoon) to drop dough onto parchment or Silpat lined baking sheets. Bake 15 minutes. Cookies will still be soft. Makes about 3 dozen.
*Purchased goodies work too - we recommend See's candy or large to go carafes of good coffee paired with donuts.