How Are You Doing?

During this pandemic, my local ABC station has been playing a commercial that features this statement. Asked by different news staff, the emphasis changes from person to person. The point being that we can all get through this pandemic, together.

If you read Sunday’s post, then you are aware that my oldest daughter has been diagnosed with Covid-19. We both have Amazon’s Echo Shows, so I was checking in with her to see how she was doing. In doing so, I was reminded of another couple who are friends of ours.

Dale and Ramona are originally from Michigan. In his youth, Dale was a runner. In his working years, he worked for the Post Office. He’s over 6 ft tall and an absolute beanpole in size. In these later years, he’s been afflicted with Parkinson Disease. Ramona is 5+ ft and might weigh 120!

Until the pandemic hit, Dale’s Parkinson’s was being handled nicely. He took exercise classes intended to keep him moving and attended support groups to stay connected with others. All that changed in March of last year. Sadly, the isolation of the pandemic has caused him to get worse, much worse.

In the last few months, Dale started to develop Parkinson Dementia. He’s spoken several times to neighbors about the “critters and homeless people” that they sent to his house. He’s called us wanting to talk to my husband about this. We’ve tried to gently redirect his attention, knowing that there is nothing there. In more recent months, he has started leaving the house and walking away. One such trip landed him on our doorstep. Another led him to the local police station in the middle of the night.

At this point in time, Dale is in a Memory Care Unit and Ramona is struggling with figuring out how to tell him that he’s not coming home. His Dementia has progressed to a point where she can’t control him and he’s become a danger to himself and possibly others. That’s a hard decision to make.

Take a good look around you, at work (if you are working!), at church if you attend, and in your neighborhood. Are there people around you that seem to be sturggling? Take a few minutes of your time to just check in on them, talk to them, pay them some attention. They may not be able to say it, but a kind word and a hug go a long way when you’re isolated and lonely!

Enjoy the Giggle!

Sometimes it takes a little more work to find a good cartoon that isn’t political! Then again, sometimes, you just have need to return to the classics. Enjoy these from “The Lockhorns.”

Cushioning Your Fall After The Pandemic

Earlier this month, MSN ran an article call “5 Money Lessons the Pandemic Has Taught US (so far).” I found it to be a very interesting read. My husband and I are retired and living on Social Security. So we have had to adjust our lifestyle to fit on a fixed income. But number one on this list may just have you coming to a screeching halt.

Putting 6 months of expenses in a savings account actually a good thing. Especially given today’s world. But my question to you is, “How are you going to accomplish that?” I did a quick check of what that would amount to for us, and nearly choked! I would need over $15,000 in the bank!

An obvious way is to start with a budget. I found this article on a Disability Insurance company’s website. And it is a good way to start. However, there is a lot of little things that you can do to boost those savings.

  1. Budget a set amount every month. This is the bare minimum to do. Just do a little math to determine how long it would take to save enough for 6 months.
  2. If you didn’t spend all of a budgeted amount, save the difference. For example, I budget $200 for groceries. If I don’t spend all of it, I need to transfer the money leftover to the savings account.
  3. Reduce bills where you can. For example, you may be paying for unlimited data on your cell phone. Do you really need it? Take a look, you may be able to lower your bill and save more money.
  4. Are you taking advantage of all the discounts you’re eligible for? My husband and I are both Veterans. I switched our car insurance a few years ago to USAA and brought our insurance bill down to just over $100.
  5. If you are leasing/renting your cellphone, check into buying it. We recently bit the bullet, paid off our phones and had a very frank discussion with our provider. By taking advantage of a program for Veterans, what had been a $325 bill became a a $100 bill, and we still have unlimited data.
  6. Take a look at all the items you have subscribed to. You may need to search through your bank statement to find all of them. If you aren’t actually using them, cancel the subscription!
  7. At the end of the month, if you still have money in the bank, transfer it to the savings account!

I have my doubts that any of us are going to be able to quickly save enough. The point is to start somewhere! Doing a little is always better than doing nothing.

Don’t Let Your Guard Down Just Yet! #COVID 19

Just about the time everyone thinks they can return to life as “normal,” the virus resurges and the death count starts rising again.

The CDC has stated time and time again, that “people wear masks in public settings and when around people who don’t live in your household, especially when other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.” CDC Guidance

You would think that it would be obvious to everyone, there’s a right way and a wrong way to wear a mask.

This is a great example of the WRONG way to wear a mask!

Masks are recommended as a simple barrier to help prevent respiratory droplets from traveling into the air and onto other people when the person wearing the mask coughs, sneezes, talks, or raises their voice. This is called source control. This recommendation is based on what we know about the role respiratory droplets play in the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19, paired with emerging evidence from clinical and laboratory studies that shows masks reduce the spray of droplets when worn over the nose and mouth. COVID-19 spreads mainly among people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet), so the use of masks is particularly important in settings where people are close to each other or where social distancing is difficult to maintain.

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/cloth-face-cover-guidance.html

Notice that they included “sneezing” in this list. Now think about what happened when you sneeze. Go ahead, I’ll wait.

That’s right, it ends up involving the nose! So not covering your nose 👃 doesn’t help much.

This is the correct way to wear a mask. And folks? We’re all going to have get on board with this if we’re going to get through this together!