Monday, November 22, 2021

Godly Boundaries vs Man's Idea of Healthy Boundaries


Healthy Boundaries ... it's gotten to be a "catch phrase" of mental health.
People have read some books that are "supposed to be" Christian.

I was handed a book by "Henry Cloud and Jeff Townsend" about boundaries.
On the surface, it sounds good - and it is full of scripture - out of context.

That was the problem, when my "group" and I started going to the BIBLE and reading those verses in context, they didn't quite line up with the book.

Ok, book by men vs book by God.

Which one would you follow?

I'm no theologian ... but I've done something most people, Americans, have not done.

I have read the Bible from cover to cover.

Most people read devotionals, watch Bible story videos and books, and only listen to sermons.
Or they read a watered down paraphrase of the Bible.

And I learned how to dig into the Greek and Hebrew.

Let's look at these.

1.  God never asked us to "fix" anyone else.   He asks us to pray for them and live a Godly Life before them.   And it gives instructions about being available for God to work through you and how to approach others.   Our job is to pray, point, and provide directions to God.

2.  We are not responsible for others, or their reactions - not their happiness, sadness, nor anger.  (Although as parents, we are responsible to teach our children how to react in a Godly Way).   God looks on their hearts, not us.  Nor are we to jump to conclusions.  We are to pray for them and forgive them.  Leave the rest to God.   If the BASIS of any counseling does not begin with forgiveness ... it might not be from God.   If counseling BEGINS WITH, "I know it really is impossible to forgive this, so you have to get revenge or throw them out" ... then RUN .. that counseling is NOT from God.

3.  Pray first.  Who is asking?  If it is from God, then say "Yes".   If it is from man, "then you should weigh it against scripture."    Too often we say "no" to God and "yes" to man, because the "man" part is more fun and instantly rewarding.  God asks hard things of us.  Look at the story of Jonah.  I mean the REAL one.   Jonah said No.   Wasn't that his right!

4. /  5.   These kind of go together.  Being responsible for others and anticipating their needs.  Ever read the story of Joseph?   God orchestrated so many parts of his life.   Joseph was proud and spoiled.  God could not use him until he had learned submission and obedience.  Then when he was ready, God put him in a position to be "responsible" and "anticipate needs".  The "whole world" came to Egypt for food, because of Joseph.    As parents, it IS our job to be responsible and anticipate the needs of our children.   God is always responsible for us and anticipates our needs.  

However, we are NOT responsible for their actions nor their walk with God.  We are not responsible to remove the curse that goes with the actions.   But God does tell us to pray for them and let HIM use us or others to meet their needs.   We should always be looking for ways  to "Pay God Forward".

We should look for ways to show God's Love (impossible without God!) every single day and in every situation.    That choice to "not be responsible" may be that persons LAST CHANCE to choose God.   And you said "No, I'm not responsible for them God."

No, we are ONLY responsible TO GOD if we are his child.   That whole "obey your parents in all things" ....   "Honor your Father (God) and Father (dad on earth)."   God kind of MENT that.

6.  It is NOT our job to make ourselves happy.  That is really kind of shocking that Christians bought into that so easily.  God said to be filled with JOY.   Joy comes from God and only from God.  Happiness is fleeting and conditional - if my cat makes me happy, do I lose my happiness if the cat dies?  Actually, Yes.   But Joy?  Joy sets itself in God First.   Really, is happiness a fruit of the spirit?  "Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, self-control?
Do you really think Paul was "happy" about being in jail?  Or Joseph? Or Corrie Ten Boom?
Was Daniel happy about being a eunuch?   But they found JOY in spite of their circumstances because they believed and trusted God first.

7.   Nobody has to agree with you?   Ok.  So, if God doesn't agree?  How about that?  What if your choice doesn't agree with what God says?
As a child of God, we should always seek to agree with God.  No matter what man says.  
Man doesn't have to agree with us, because the world will never agree with God.
God never said that it was "ok to do our own thing".
He said, "the World will not agree when you do MY THING."

8.  I have a right to my own feelings.  Well, how can THAT be a problem?
Often, the Bible says "heart" for our feelings.
The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked, who can know it?
Dig into the Greek ... God is saying our feelings are deceitful.
Feelings come and go.  And some of us are heavy feelers.

God has feelings.  God made feelings.
BUT God says to not trust our feelings.
Pray, seek reconciliation, if you have anything against your brother - Go to them and TALK - don't even offer your burnt offering to God until you have done so.
See, God isn't about emotions.
He is about building relationships and forgiveness.

9.  I am enough.
YOU are never enough.
GOD is enough.
JESUS BLOOD is enough.
Without God, you are nothing, everything you do is nothing, everything of your life is nothing.
When you stand before God at the final judgement ... 
He will ask
WHY?  What do you bring?
Your only hope is for Jesus to step into your place and say, "Father, I claim this one.  This one is mine and my blood bought and paid for their entry to heaven."
You honestly can bring nothing.

2 Timothy 3

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.

2For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,

3Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,

4Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;

5Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

6For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,

7Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.

8Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith.

9But they shall proceed no further: for their folly shall be manifest unto all men, as theirs also was.

10But thou hast fully known my doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, longsuffering, charity, patience,

11Persecutions, afflictions, which came unto me at Antioch, at Iconium, at Lystra; what persecutions I endured: but out of them all the Lord delivered me.

12Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.

13But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.

14But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them;

15And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.

16All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:

17That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

Friday, April 30, 2021

Being Rich in Poverty

These thoughts have been weighing on my heart and mind lately.  I want God to use this blog to minister to others, and this is one of many topics that I feel God's leading to address.  It is with much prayer that I'll type this out, and I pray God will use it to his glory.

I wrote this almost 6 years ago ... and never felt led to hit "publish".   Over the last 3 years, a great deal has changed in our life and home, most notably is that I now work with VIPkid and we live in an apartment.  God has blessed us beyond what we asked.


According to the American poverty statistics, my family is poor.

This video is fairly accurate ....

BUT ... 

I found this "How Rich Are You?" tool ... and while I'm not 100% sure how accurate it is, I'm pretty sure it is close.  And according to that - we are in the top 15% of the world.  At least 84% of the world makes less than we do ...
I did notice that this does not take into consideration how many people live in your family.
 BUT  ...  even if we only brought in $4000 a year - we would STILL be in the top 15%.

Now, while in America, family sizes tend to be 2 or 3 children - in 3rd world countries  families are often 5 or more children.  I think this widens the gap even farther.

But I'm not here to complain about being poor ...  because on most days - we don't notice it much.

Most day's I'm really thankful for how rich we are.

Just look at all of these BLESSINGS!

1.  We have a house - it's a trailer house, and it's really drafty and the walls are thin.  BUT it has nearly 1000 sq. ft, 3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths, a (usually) working kitchen, and too much furniture.  The roof doesn't leak (even though a few windows do).  It sits on my parents property - so we don't pay rent nor a house payment.   How many people can say they have that much space, locking doors, running water, adequate sewage removal, warm beds ... and other benefits of having your own walls and your own land?  Not only that, but we also have cooling and heating!

2.  We have plenty of clothes and shoes and bedding - we have lots of friends and relatives - there always seems to be somebody available to give us clothes.  We carefully store our bedding each Spring, so we have plenty of blankets - and we stay warm, even when a storm knocks out the electricity.  Sometimes shoes are a bit of a challenge - but usually if I let it be known that we've moved to a new shoe size - somebody meets that need.  When Scholar suddenly grew out of his summer sandals, a friend found a pair at a garage sale, and a cousin sent some down that her son could no longer wear along with a bonus pair of shoes for church, which was a huge blessing!   Sunshine got so many clothes given to her at 12 months, that I donated half of them - even after 3 other friends and relatives pulled items out for their daughters.  Who cares if they are second hand - they all still looked great!

3.  We eat.  Not just one meal a day, we eat 3 times a day, and the young ones get a snack.  Some meals are bland and quite repetitive, but we are nowhere close to doing without completely.  When our cupboards were getting very low this summer, and we were down to mostly beans (of all types) and rice, when we had no cereal or peanut butter .....  A friend brought us 5 or 6 large boxes of food - a friend of hers was cleaning out her pantry ... could we use the food?  Inside were 10 boxes of cereal, 2 jars of peanut butter, and lots of seasoning and veggies and lots more.  It didn't matter to us if the exp date was getting close - this was manna from heaven!  And even had we not gotten those boxes - we would not have starved - because we still are pulling out and fixing "mystery packages" from our freezer.  I really need to label our left overs better.

4.  We have cell phones.  Both of us.  Nothing fancy and nothing new.

5.  We have a paid for van.  It is ours and it is pretty faithful.  Cars don't last forever though - so we are wondering how God will provide that need when we get there.  We've been down the road of "car repairs exceed the cost of a car payment every month" at least twice before, so we've been blessed that over the last 3 years, this car has not needed a lot of expensive repairs.  We live out in the country - walking on a high traffic highway is not an option, and we don't have public transportation out here - or even many friends nearby to carpool.  So a car that transports 8 is a HUGE blessing - the kids can bring friends home on Sunday from church!

6.  I have 4 amazing kids that I am able to homeschool.  And even though I was not able to afford any new curriculum this year - we've been able to adapt or borrow anything that we really needed.  Because I've homeschooled for 15 years, I have a ton of resources at my fingertips.  I consider my children my absolute most prized "possessions".  They are priceless.

7.  We have internet - it's not the fastest connection - but it is faster than dial-up.  And with 5 computers using it for school and job searches, it has paid for itself a dozen times over.   Yes, we have a lot of OLD computers.  They also take up a lot of space - which is why I am so grateful that my Dad allows us to use part of his house to school in every day.  With the internet, I have access to ideas, information, and friends and family all day and all night.

8.  We can freely attend church.  Every one of my kids has their own Bible.  I have a ton of Bible resources and tools that we own - some belonged to our parents - but they are easily available.  We don't sneak to church, or huddle with flashlights with a forbidden copy of the Bible.  My kids can sing their church songs and practice their memory verses outside as much as they want to ... and it's OK.   I must also mention all of the friends and relatives that pray for us daily.

9.  My kids have toys ... tons of toys.  Between hand me downs and pass it arounds and a couple of generous relatives at Christmas - we have dolls, blocks, trains, Little People, tinker toys, legos, videos to watch, computer games (for PC), books to read, cars, bikes, and more.  Some days it can get rather overwhelming.
They don't have the latest gadgets or the latest toys - we don't know the latest fads, music, movies, or TV shows ... and we really don't miss them much.  It is tons of fun to play with a cousin's Wii ... or watch movies on their iphones and ipads ... but when we come home at night, we are not moping about what we don't have.  They still read with the old Leap Pads, work puzzles by hand, and dig for treasure in real dirt.   I actually am quite amused at what my kids do wish for at birthday's and Christmas - sometimes is it quite unusual.

10.  The "Stuff" of life.  We have dishes, pots and pans, freezers, gizmos, knick nacks, cameras, canisters, VCRs, and so much STUFF.  It is amazing how much you can acquire without even trying.  I'm not a shopper - and yet my house steadily fills up.  Some stuff is hand me downs or "family heirlooms", some we've had forever, most of it was given to us through the years.  This summer, I've been going through my mom's things (you know, she didn't take it with her when she died - and she only wore one set of clothes and a bit of jewelry when they buried her) and over and over I've wondered how we all manage to accumulate so much of so little real value.  And with so many people purging their homes of clutter ... it is very easy to come by more stuff!

Bonus:  The one thing that makes me the richest though ... my salvation.   No matter how poor I consider myself, no matter how rich I could ever become ... it is all worthless if I have turned my back on Christ's offer of salvation.  Most of my family feels the same way, as do most of my friends.   It will be a wonderful and joyful occasion as we each check out our mansions in heaven, and giggle and smile and hug and sing our way through eternity.

Yeah - I'm RICH.

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Sunday, January 10, 2021

Covid 19 and why we've been Snookered

I was going to polish this up ... I won't .... I'll never get this published if I do that.

A storm is coming. We have been lied to ....

Watch Revelation unfold....


Early Summer 2020
Another point of view .... the more data that becomes available, the more I'm convinced that we don't know the real numbers at all. So who is telling the truth. And it still puzzles me why that there are so few cases in the equator zone. I just don't have all of the facts.
In fact, if you look at the data, most high deaths are among those of European decent. I find that odd.

So much of what we should do is common sense. Wash your hands (DUH, they begin teaching that in preschool.. but if you ever watch people leaving a restroom in any public place, less than half stop to wash) .... Stay home if you are sick (Again, shouldn't we be doing this anyway?) ...... Keep things clean. (What, wasn't anybody actually cleaning BEFORE? ) ..... I'm all for slowing down the rate of the virus going through the population, but things are overboard here. I cannot for the life of me figure out why they closed down all outdoors activities. Won't preventing exercise cause more harm!

Yes, I think this is the beginning of end. America has been flirting with socialism and communism now for years. I was disappointed in some of the actions that have taken place. But the power hungry rich (plenty of rich will be destroyed by those who don't want to share the power or the wealth) will come out ahead in all of this. They get tons of new laws passed that eradicate or weaken freedoms given in the constitution.

Someone is behind the curtain in OZ, and this time he's not the friendly sort.

On the positive side, for those willing to work, there are tons of delivery and selection services available. Families are seeing what their kids are like and what they are learning. Families are spending time together and finishing projects on the back burner. People are solving problems and getting to know their neighborhoods. I am seeing a LOT of good things.
Staying shut down is only helping those able to stay home ... people who have a house/yard/jobs that can be done at home/ etc. (I work for an online company teaching English, while it fluctuates, it is an income. Nothing is open, I have no reason to go out.) ..... I homeschool anyway, but my kids have now lost their outside activities (nobody has asked me lately about the importance of socialization) and yes, sometimes I get frustrated and yell at them (QUIT RUNNING!!! The neighbors downstairs don't like hearing you pound on their heads) (Then I send them outside to run) .

. My husband is "essential" selling hamburgers at McDonald's. Every day, he is exposed to hundreds (closer to 1000) people a day taking money through drive through. There is no social distancing in a store that small. They do wash hands and clean. So the "richer" stay home while the poor who HAVE to work do all of the touching and exposing themselves. Nobody is going to pay their bills. Who is watching their kids. They are stressed, no money to buy food, pay rent or house payments (if you think that stimulus check helps ... for most families, that will keep them going maybe a month. What do they do next month? And that money will NOT be given to them next year when they do taxes (read the law they passed)

One daughter has to figure out how to get to town so she can work at McDonald's, she still walks to work when she stays with us. Another daughter feels isolated because she is a CNA at a nursing home. ....... I've got a dozen or more friends in danger of loosing businesses and homes because there is no income. Some of them are high risk, but they don't have a choice, they need to find work.

Farms are loosing money and destroying crops (just not harvesting it) and livestock because the companies that purchase and slaughter are shutting down or downsizing. If they usually slaughter 5000 animals a day and now can only do 1000 a day, what do you do with the other 4000? We can't all drive over to the farm, pick up a live animal, and take it home and process it. It is easier to sell off milk and eggs every day to the local population, and even easier to do produce, but again, how far will people drive with social distancing in place? It is a matter of months before the effects trickle to the average American in soaring meat and produce prices and for the poor, they will go hungry first. What will they eat? There won't even be processed foods and prices will go up!

What happens when foreign companies swoop in and buy up businesses and farms? It's already happening. ........ I live in a small apartment, I've not left it to go anywhere (much) in 6 weeks. There is nowhere to go. This has NOT been healthy for me. It is difficult to exercise at home. Fresh air and sunshine and activity are huge help to staying healthy to fight the virus, but we are getting sicker by the day hiding in our homes. Relatively few poor have the space or means to exercise enough in their homes.

Do the lives of these millions not matter? I'm all for protecting those who are vulnerable. I'm old enough and have medical concerns that puts me in a higher risk group, but I don't want to see the economy collapse or children going hungry because I need to be protected. There are not easy answers. I am all for letting those who need to send their kids to school, people who need to work or want to work ... let them go back. Open the gyms for those who need to stay healthy. If you want to stay in your bubble and you are able to financially do it, I'll applaud your staying home. But don't ask thousands to lose everything to keep you safe either. We need a solutions that allows more winners in the equations. More support of the truckers, more factory workers, ease regulations so farmers can sell directly to the public without penalty ... and so on. It will only work if everyone is willing to suffer (and I don't mean make your lobster at home in your gourmet kitchen instead of a restaurant suffer), I mean, buy groceries and have them delivered to homes that are running out of food. People who know how to process meats and foods, should be allowed to do so, restaurants should open up, be allowed and encouraged to sell their food as take out and as dine in for those who must work. People who need surgery should be allowed to have it. Open up the outdoors so people can exercise.


And here we are.... late Fall .... in most of the middle America, where food is grown, the folks in charge tossed caution to the wind and let farmers farm and sell ... it has saved us for now. But the truth is, there is less stored food now than there was this time last year. Normally, warehouses are brimming with stored and processed foodstuff that will be sold off during the entire winter and into the spring.

Monday, April 6, 2020

Corona Virus 19 .. and Why you SHOULD care!

NOTE:   Newer studies indicate that not a single traceable case has been linked back to any child under 10.   .....   this was written via the information that I had available in March 2020.    Now two months later, as more and more numbers are becoming available ....  I've wondered if I should remove it ... but no .... it serves as a mark in time.  Caution was advised.  Caution was wise .. but some used the cry of caution to grab power, rewrite laws, and make themselves secure and rich at the expense of many.  Time will tell.  Time will tell.

why the virus information is deceptive and why you should care ...

Coronavirus: What it does to the body - BBC News

It is true that the recovery rate is high.  It is true that most children show few if any symptoms.  Most healthy people will show few symptoms, and feel like they have a cold, allergies, or a touch of the flu.  Most people will never know that they even had it.  In fact, in large populations, it appears as if around 10% will catch it and of those 10% will need extreme hospital care.  Overall, there have been deadlier viruses in the past.

The thing is ... nobody in the world had ever had this .... nobody.  We've not seen this level of "nobody" since the bubonic plague came to Europe from ship rats that carried fleas that carried a microbe that until then .. supposedly only lived in one mountain area in China.  Totally harmless to that population.

But you see ....

... if you are the first person infected, you potentially could infect up to 90% of those you come in direct contact with (if you are the first person to spread it) unless they are already infected ... which is why the "infection rate" appears low.  In the law of averages though, the infection rate is quite high.  Each of those people have a 50% chance of being "benign" cases ..about 30% chance of being very sick, but don't need major medical care, and a 20% chance of needed medical intervention of some degree - many cases attack the lungs to create a severe pneumonia symptom that breaks down lung tissue into (according to the article I read) a honeycomb of burst cells. ....... ALL of them will become carriers infecting many of those they come in contact with.  Since *nobody* (there is a theory that this virus has been around for much longer) had this virus before Jan 1, 2020*estimate, it is unlikely that it will pass you by.   Although there have been a few families that one member never tested positive.

Children are the worst carriers.  around 75% of the kids have mild or no symptoms.  They touch everything, they don't cover their mouths when the cough or sneeze, and they tend to stick fingers in noses, mouths, and eyes.  So a child can just "feel off" and infect dozens of others on an outing.   Surfaces touched can share the virus for up to 4 days (plastics).
Still, MOST of these figures are smushed together from the extremes of articles that I've read, some translated from the Chinese articles that my "moms" post on WeChat.   These figures could be high .. or low.  Even if only 5% of the cases are problematic, could the 2 local  hospitals in my town handle even 1% of the population needing to be on the big ventilators at the same time?  Most nursing  homes don't have this kind of equipment for intensive care. 

You can be contagious for up to 5 days before you show any symptoms.  Like most viruses, once you touch it, you can spread it until you wash very well, then there is an incubation period and at some point you become contagious before you realize that you are spreading a serious illness.   You can be contagious and never run a fever.  Of course, hygiene has improved so much since the last pandemic.  We have it available .. we just have to actually use it!

Let's look at just ONE theoretical case.

So here is 5 year old Johnny.  Mom doesn't want to be cooped up with her little bundle of energy.  Mom doesn't know it, but he has picked up the virus from a park water fountain last week and is a carrier, she shrugs his cough off as normal spring allergies and gives him an allergy tablet.  First, they head to the indoor playground and play for an hour.  Twenty other kids are there.  The play area is mostly plastics, and small, they line up to slide down the slide, climb the blocks, and play the giant board games along the walls.  Johnny touches everything, including many hugs to the other kids, as he is a friendly boy.  They are all exposed by the time they leave because these kids are touching eyes and putting hands in their mouths after climbing the same slide and climbing wall a dozen times.    (A few diligent moms will have been watching and cleaning, the cleaning will prevent actual infection - but most will wait until they arrive home, feeding kids snacks in the cars with the unwashed hands.)      Next Johnny's Mom heads to the store to buy groceries.  He doesn't want to stay in the cart and manages to touch enough surfaces that he will pass on the germs to another 20 people when they touch these same surfaces over the next 36 hours. 

One child, 40 new potential cases, more than half of those are other kids.   He was the first one in this little town to pick up the virus.  His mom had no idea that a homeless man from an infected area many states away had stopped at their park and had a drink and a cough hours before she had taken Johnny to the park one cold but sunny day the week before.  One contact.

Several moms were careful and cleaned or put sanitizer on the kids hands which does slow the spread of the virus, but it isn't long before most of those kids have exposed siblings, parents, and other friends and family in random moments that they let down their guard, after all, they are sure they haven't been around anyone who had the virus  - a baby puts fingers in a siblings mouth, sneezes during supper, and wants picked up a dozen times a day.

Because the infection transference is so high, by the end of the week, Johnny has managed to expose 100 people as Mom takes him to stores and parks and play dates to "burn energy".  Johnny never really feels sick.  Mom eventually thinks she has a severe cold but is never tested for the virus.  She will be uncounted and so will Johnny.  Most of those exposed will catch the virus and begin spreading it.

More problematic will be the weekend to Grandma and Grandpa's house.  Both grandparents will become severely ill and wonder where they managed to catch it.

Of those 100, half will be spreading the virus because they are showing few if any symptoms.  (We know that the chicken pox is only contagious just before the spots and during the spots eruptions. .....  One of the questions is ... how long is a person contagious and when can they start spreading it? .....   The answer is, "day of" until the hands, clothing, and exposed body parts are washed with soap.  Then for a few days they are ok, some doctors are saying a person can spread this for a whole week before showing any symptom at all, while others say, they are not contagious until there is a fever.  They are still learning - we are all guinea pigs.  14 days ... maybe 21.)  So back to those 100.  There will be at least 20 that get pretty sick.  They probably will go see a doctor and even get a test run (5 days to get a result in the USA because the tests have to be mailed to a lab and then mailed back).  So half will never know they had it or were spreading it. ....  Of 30 that were sick, about 20 will be able to weather the virus with normal "drinking, sleeping, isolation" regime.  At least 10 will end up in the hospital, and at least 5 of those will fight for their lives.  Those who survive will probably have permanent lung damage.

Those are simple numbers.  But this virus is on an "e" curve and is not linear.   By the end of week 2, Johnny will have exposed an additional 20 people, and exposed most of those he has contact with in a week several additional times.  But now those he infected are beginning to spread the virus as well.  By the end of week 3, Johnny's trips into the still active public will have spread to over 500 from those he exposed and infected, he is no longer spreading it, but those he infected are.  That 500 will continue to infect others.  By week 5, over 2,000 people could have contracted the disease from Johnny's trips out, including many who have now taken it to other cities and neighborhoods.   The thing with "e" curves, for everyone that remains out of the equation, fewer people are affected and the less extreme the slope.  

This is why the virus appears to be controlled and not a problem for the first 2 weeks.  Laugh, joke, "yeah right, I've got a vaccine for that in my fridge, give it to my cows" ... but it's a completely different corona virus.  Week 3 will see a jump in cases and people will begin shifting from foot to foot with unease, laughing and secretly worried.  Week 4.  Hospitals become increasingly unable to keep up.  Week 5, they could be choosing who dies here.  You can be sure, they did in Wuhan and Italy as well, and every other affected area.  

What about the uncounted?  The very poor, unable to get to medical help, places where there are no fancy equipment to assist breathing?  That could mean up to 25% of the population could die.  Take Africa .. poor health and poor living conditions already, or the homeless population. 

Remember when smallpox hit the Indian nations?  Whole tribes were decimated within weeks.  We keep comparing this to the flu because it acts like a flu.  Try comparing it to something that was as easily spread when introduced to a new population ... like the smallpox or medieval plagues.

Wuhan/China waited weeks before admitting they had a problem.  By shutting down the entire nation, even during a critical vacation and revenue time of the year, here they are 5 weeks later and most of the cities and population has been spared (or that is what they are reporting), even in Wuhan.   Numbers are probably much higher than reported, as China has a sub culture of "non-citizens" that are born illegally... those will not be counted and are at the highest risk of death.  They would not have been tested and they will not be given medical care.  They simply do not exist. 

Let's bring this home ...  how many people do you know that is high risk?  What will you be willing to do to keep them safe?  Song has asthma, anyone with breathing issues like asthma and allergies.  My dad is taking cancer treatments, anyone in any form of cancer treatments.  Anyone over 60.  Anyone in the medical field.  Anyone who tends to "catch everything".   People with sensory issues.  Anyone with gut health issues.  Anyone who just had surgery.  New babies. ... and so many others.   Overweight, heart problems, diabetic... in general, if you are in poor health, the outcomes are worse.

My students and their parents say this to me.

1.  Stay home.  Do not be tempted to go out at all.

2.  Drink warm water (they boil all of their water) and wash your hands a lot.

3.  Exercise and eat healthy foods.

4.  If you have a cough or sneeze, use a facemask.  Do  not go anywhere.  Stay alone in the house.

5.  Only one person leaves the house.  Only to buy food and things you need.  Cover yourself and wash well when you come home.  Do not touch anyone or anything.  Come home quickly.

6.  Teacher?  Where is your facemask?  You MUST wear one!

Several teachers have students mailing them "good" facemasks to keep their teacher safe.  Most are "stuck" in the mail.

Isolation seems to be a critical factor in controlling the virus spread (isn't this ALWAYS TRUE!)  (My kids always get sick right after they go to SS or other group events).   Frequent and thorough hand washing helps a LOT (SHOULDN'T WE BE DOING THIS ANYWAY?).

Many people who work medical or vital services have not been allowed to return home in China.  They have beds with plastic sheeting between.  No two beds can be occupied at the same time.  What you need, the government will bring to you.

There are very few restrictions in the country.  Many of the children were sent, or left in the country at the beginning of the outbreak. 

I'm heading to bed.
It is sobering.  But God is in control.
Don't fear it ... but do as the Bible says ... Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.  Be part of the solution, not part of the problem.  Just stay home unless you have no other choice.  Set up video networks to talk to friends, attend get togethers, etc.  When people begin to have family and friends -  people they love - with this ... THEN they will care.

Sunday, December 8, 2019

The VIPkid Train Gains Momentum!

So as Christmas rolled around ... this gig called "VIPkid" was taking off.  Christmas was not bleak, but I gave more to the two small ones hoping the big ones would understand, they were both adults now and had had many big Christmases in their past.  I even managed to sneak in some Black Friday shopping.

I was SO exhausted.  Waking up at 4:30 every single morning for over 40 days and still trying to run a full schedule ...  ....  but the shocking thing was the "involuntary naps".   I found that I had no control over these naps that I would suddenly find myself waking up and a whole hour was gone out of my day.   Never in my life had I had this much problem staying awake ... and I chalked it up to one more thing in my brain that the stroke had affected.   In my attempts to stay awake for the 2 hours required (5am - 7am) that could be booked as a short notice, I started watching the "Highlander" series on Amazon Prime.  A show that had been on my "rewatch" status for a long time.  (Side Note:  my husband says I don't watch TV like you are supposed to - I fast forward and skip whole sections)  anyway, I managed to cover the entire series in a little over 2 months of these early morning times.

I homeschooled 2 extra kids 3 days a week, and those days, I just opened the door at 7am and kept going with my day.  Otherwise, I went back to bed or turned off the light and fell asleep in my chair.   Nights remained chaotic as the ref was .. reffing ... and he was seldom home nights between McDonald's and reffing.  At this time also, our car seemed to be IN the shop for repairs almost as often as it was OUT.   From late August on, with growing frequency, we had one electrical repair after another from needing to replace a "newish" battery to a starter and so on.  This meant that getting anywhere was difficult and we relied heavily on friends and family to get us places.

Finally my "big break" arrived!  December 23, wee house of the morning, I managed a booking that didn't disappear!   And I taught my first class to a kid named "Hamburger" I think, or was it "Minecraft".   We laughed and enjoyed ourselves and managed to only go over a few minutes.  Another class the next day, and 4 in a row Christmas morning.  And a few rebooked and left 5 apples.  I was so excited.

As we rolled through January, I was becoming more desperate for sleep.  I did not  want to sleep through the school day, and being a light sleeper, the refs very different schedule and only 3 beds in the house, meant I was falling asleep at odd times, forcing those 2 hours awake, and often taking advantage of any reprieve (kids in church or on an outing) just to be able to sleep in quiet bliss for a few hours.   Without it, my blood pressure shot up.  Also, I'm a sleepy snacker.  If I'm tired, I eat to stay awake.   And the negative side effect is ... pounds.  I began to notice my hard won weight loss beginning to reverse.

Being desperate, I began dragging blankets and pillows into the hallway or Sunshine's room, just to sleep for a few hours before teaching.

As January rolled to the end, I found myself very close to my goal of 50 classes per month, but just shy of the 45 class bonus.  I sent in a ticket, and to my delight, a few more classes booked, bringing me to 46 for the month.  I was OVER THE MOON.  For the first time, there was a deposit to my bank for VIPkid.   It wasn't much, but it would relieve the tight budget.  ... Or help pay for the car bills.

At any rate ....  I was making a bit of cash and for the first time in 20 years, we didn't wonder if the paycheck would stretch to cover the bills.

February did see us hitting a major glitch.  We had a 1TB data plan ... imagine our shock when we were notified 20 days into the month that we were over our plan!  HOW did we use up a whole TB of data?   We traced the source back to my computer ... and then to my teaching Chrome Account. ....  It took us about 2 weeks, but most of the data was being eaten by my using Google Slides group accounts.  Once I copied the files into my own account, changed to Firefox, and put a choker program to close the tabs that I was not using, the data usage dropped to normal.

Just if you are wondering ... Teaching 4-5 classes with Google Slides runs about a GB of data is all.   Which means that if I have to use our hot spot (and I have) then I do not have to worry about using the entire data plan for our cell phones.   I use Google Slides on 2 devices.  I have a borrowed iphone that I use for reward slides, and my personal phone is for the teaching slides.

Currently my hours are from 4:30 - 7:00 AM every morning, and Friday and Saturday nights from 6:30 to 11PM ... whatever books.  I try to not book more than 5 either night and give myself a break every 2 or 3 classes. 

I have a bedtime goal of 10-11 pm, though I'm good if I get in bed by midnight.  I have taught as early as 3:30am, but found it too exhausting to power through to 7am.   I tried teaching just week mornings for 3 hours.  But that was harder than 7 days a week.  I didn't book classes past 9:30 until recently. 

China passed new laws and now I have lost my 7am - 8am teaching slots (everybody did).  So, I moved that class to 4am/4:30am ... and discovered 5 classes is my upper limit without a break.  I have to take off the headphones and walk around!  5 x 7 is 35, so I make up those last 5 classes on the weekend nights.  I may try to push to 50 a week if I can establish a routine for the family.

After my last class, I do feedback until my eyes start closing, then drop into a bed and sleep until my body lets me wake up again between 9 and 11 am.  THEN we get going on the day.  In total, I require 6 hours of sleep to function, and if I am woken after that 6 hours, I can't go back to sleep.

I also started my own YouTube Channel!  ENJOY!

If you want to learn more?... Use my referral link.  I do help answer questions and point you in the direction of more help if you need it.

Sorry, this opportunity is no longer available in California.

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