Tuesday, March 29, 2011

S0cial Unrest

I'm just gonna dump my brain in an effort to 'make you think'...I should warn you that this is not my husbands favorite game that I play with him.

I like to surround myself with different minded people, people that make me think. I find great pleasure in listening to people share thoughts on subjects that I either know very little about or absolutely nothing about. It's stimulating to me. I am not a pessimistic, I am a realist. I hear what they say and then I do my own research.

Recently, I've had a few conversations with my friends and family about the Amer*ca, as we've always known it and the potential collapse of this great country. It's fascinating conversation to me and it has really left my wheels turning and I find myself seeking to read different thoughts across the board. There is no left or right in this post, I am neither blue or red, I am an Amer*can, a Mom, a person who loves life and a person who will protect my family with every being of my existence. So if this is not a topic you've ever thought about, then hopefully it will leave you thinking. We can't evolve if we cease to think, just sayin'...

Let me begin with the questions that were purposed to me that opened a door of action...So let's play the "What If "Game...

I am not talking about the Apocalypse, I am talking about Social Unrest.

*In the event that the Amer*can d0llar does become worthless, are you prepared for what that actually means? The demise of the dollar is a subject you should think about. We are on our way where the Amer*can d0llar will cease to be the w0rld's currency, hyperinflation is imminent, study up on it folks. Have you really thought about what that means to you and your family?

It means the very dollar you buy your food with is now worthless. Worthless to the person excepting it and worthless to the bank. The d0llar has lost 29% of its value in 7 years. They'll be a point in life when you might as well burn the dollar to stay warm.

Most people believe that because it's never happened to them, then it won't. That is called Normalcy Bias. We Amer*cans simply refuse to see the evidence that's right in front of our face, because it is unlike anything we have ever experienced before.

*In the event that gas prices soar and shelves are not as stocked because trucks can't afford the gasoline to stock them, are you prepared to be able to feed your family? Do you have enough water to maintain their needs?

I can relate to this immediately because I know the food shortage that took place before hurricanes, after hurricanes and even the big ice storm this past winter. The way people rush the stores to grab that one loaf of bread is barbaric in nature. It becomes a survival instinct, a panic of sorts. What we witnessed happening in New 0rleans is nothing like we will see if hyperinflation occurs and Amer*ca can no longer afford the interest rate on it's debt.

We have borrowed an impossible amount of money which we will never be able to pay back. The looming currency crisis is inevitable. 42 million Amer*cans are on food stamps. 13% of our entire population. Those numbers are up 17.5% from last year and that number has gone up every month for 19 months. How can a country be in good shape when 13% of the population can't even afford to buy food.?.

The numbers for unemployment are skewed. They haven't risen because many of the benefits have run out and those people are no longer counted as 'unemployed'...however, more people are collecting unemployment and just because the ones that no longer qualify for benefits are no longer counted by the government does not mean they are employed. 43% of Amer*cans families spend more than they earn. The Amer*can consumer is broke.

So let me ask, are we Amer*cans immune to the laws of economics & finance?

With all this "stuff" brewing, I believe each family needs an emergency plan. I have begun working on an emergency plan to get the hell out of dodge to wait out the chaos, if the need arises. Big cities will feel it first and I won't want to be in Hot-lanta when the shit hits the fan. Serious social unrest is on the horizon. Are you prepared? Do you have enough food, water, medical supplies to wait out the chaos for 6-12 months? You will not be able to rely on the government because they will be to busy trying to save themselves. I believe Amer*ca will be restructuring itself and we will lose our place as the super power of the world. Not a far fetched theory at all, study up on it.

Personally, I will make sure we have enough gasoline stored to get my family out of this big city. I will have enough food and water to feed my family. Batteries, because if the Amer*can dollar takes the plunge, then who's paying for eletric? They won't want your money either.

I have friends that have invested in gold, which is smart if you have the extra cash flow. Gold will hold value and you can invest in the new currency of the world.

I know it's crazy stuff to think about, but having some good conversations with other people made me realize that even though I thought I was prepared, I'm really not. I just want to get your thinker going so that in the event of chaos, you are not in denial. Social unrest will be inevitable if people can not feed their families.

I know a lot of you don't believe in guns, but I do. I am prepared to protect my family at all costs. Do you think I'd advertise my preparedness and not be ready to defend it? HA, then you don't know me.

Many of you will read this and think I'm crazy and that's perfectly fine with me because I will be a prepared crazy when events happen that are completely out of my control. But if you think I am crazy, I got ask, why? Is it because it's the first time you've given a thought to this subject? Are you in denial about the world around you? or have you also been thinking about these same things? C'mon, let's talk, I'm open for the conversation.

As far as I see it, if Amer*ca gets it's shit together, then I am ahead of the game by 6-12 months. What's the harm in that?

Monday, March 21, 2011

13.1, because I'm 0nly 1/2 crazy

Well I'm glad that's out of the way....
13.1 in 2:15....that's 10 minute miles with no training. I'll take it.
I've stressed about this run since Feb 8, which happened to be my birthday, when I collapsed from shin splints and haven't ran since.
I've been a runner for quite a while now, but only did 5k's and 10k's.
I knew I was way ready for a 1/2 marath0n and really felt like I should bump up to the marath0n...until I literally collapsed from shin splints while running on Feb 8. I really thought I was done. The pain was so horrible every day that I thought I was dealing with stress fractures at that point. I should have gone to the doctor, but I didn't. I iced them daily and popped motrin for the pain and inflammation and slowly they began to heal.
I also battled my ongoing case of anemia and realized I was seriously suffering from a vitamin D deficiency. I had been diagnosed several years ago as an anemic, but managed it with shots, vitamins and red meat. After I moved to GA, I stopped all my B shots and I've slowly removed meats from my diet. I attempted to run last weekend, for the first time since Feb 8 and struggled for 7 miles...struggled. I couldn't breath, I was dizzy, my hands were numb and I just wanted to be anywhere doing anything other than running. I didn't have it in me and worried how I'd ever deal with 13.1 the very next weekend. I was reminded, because clearly I had forgotten, that I had low red blood count that needed more attention than I was I was giving it. I had seriously forgotten and all of a sudden everything made sense to me as to the symptoms I had been dealing with.
So with all that being said, I ramped up my B vits and added some red meats to my diet and slowly starting feeling like a human again. I'm not quite there, but I definitely feel an improvement.
I just decided that I wouldn't be setting any records in this race, but was just going to run for fun...so I woke up at 4:15 A.M. and made my way to downtown Atlanta where I joined the other 18,000 people out for an early morning run. The weather was perfect and I felt great...until Monday morning came...my muscles are tight. I expected some leg soreness, but hadn't really planned on my back muscles hurting and the big issue with me is I think I've bruised my toenails on the left foot. I'm afraid they will fall off, just in time for flip flop season, oh joy. I just didn't think to cut them ugly short before running, and I won't be making that mistake again.
Below are some pictures from the ATL paper. I obviously didn't have a camera because I wasn't going to carry it the distance. So I have one photo of me and my neighbor that we took with my iphone when we were going to eat afterwards.

Next up:
I can't wait for this one! It will not only be my husband's first race ever, but it will be the first time he runs, cause that's how he rolls.

Friday, March 18, 2011


Ok y'all, I'll do a post on c0uponing soon....but for now, y'all start collecting c0upons. I buy 2 Sunday papers every week and steal the c0upons from my neighbors that don't use them as well. You can go online and print c0upons as well.
C0upons are a cycle.
The ones you collect this week are probably the ones that you will be using in 6 weeks or so.
Food sales cycle.
You hoard c0upons until it's a sale or a B0g0 and then you play your game.
So for now, all y'all start by buying 2 Sunday papers this week.
You don't even have to clip them.
I just pull the inserts out and stick them in a 5 gallon zipl0c, nothing fancy.
Deal everyone???

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

I'm stockpiling, not hoarding...

What started as a quest to learn the coupon game, has enabled me to begin a stockpile of food for very cheap.

This post is not meant to be political at all, so if you feel the need to attack my thoughts, then all I can say is I'm sorry you feel the need.
Watching the news has me worried. Not the kind of worry that keeps me up at night, but the kind of worry that makes me think. I am a mother of 4 and I feel as though I would not be doing my job if I didn't prepare for rough seas ahead....just in case.
By nature, I am very open minded. If I am speaking to a conservative, I like to throw out my liberal way of thinking and vise versa, I just like to make others think. Recently, at the request of my Mother, I Tiv0'd and watched an episode of Glenn B*eck. Not going to lie, he is not my favorite, but my husband took the message from her and just "had to record it to see how crazy it was", his words, not mine.

Since that time, we have watched it twice.
There were 2 very interesting points that helped me shift my thinking into more of a proactive way of thinking. Kind of like my mind frame was with bringing EG home. I planned for the worst, but hoped for the best. Needless to say, all my planning paid off because she was a hot mess.
Things in the world that I have chose to close my eyes to, because I just don't feel like thinking about it and honestly, I just have way to much going on in my life to care. However, the unsettled middle east, Egypt, L*bya, the financial collapse of America, the growing debt of America, the worthless American d0llar and the rising gas prices...The Perfect Storm. America no longer owns America. I decided to not live in fear, but to batten down my family's hatches and know that we are prepared in the event of a storm.
Above is one picture of my family's 'stockpile' of food. I have another pantry going for all cleaning supplies, paper products and other necessities. My kitchen pantry is completely stocked and I have 2 fridges & 3 freezers going. I am not a hoarder. We are a family of 6 and we do go through a lot of food on a normal basis, but in the event of something bigger, I want to be prepared. We can not predict the future, but we can prepare to the best of our abilities.
My point in saying all this is because I have managed to stockpile all this food while cutting my grocery bill completely in half. We eat very well on a normal basis and if you know me, then you know that I still buy a lot of organic and fresh produce. Using coupons is a game and I like a good challenge, so I made a commitment to figure it out this year and I'm so glad that I did. When I began, all my working friends told me they didn't have time. Now that I work full time, have kids in sports and y'all know I love my social schedule, I still manage to coupon every single week. I would never go back to paying full price for anything. I will never pay more than a $1.00 for a box of cereal, not even the Uncle Sam cereal. I bought 6 cartons of organic, lactose free milk this weekend for $2.00 each. Why pay more, when I know I can get it much cheaper buy using coupons?
I encourage you all to try it. It's like getting an extra pay check in the mail every month and that's just to good to just throw away if you ask me. Last month I saved over $700 combining coupons with BOGO's.
Hopefully the storm will not come and America will wake up to the world that is on fire around us, but for now, I hope to be able to continue to batten down the hatches and be able to be a shelter for others if the time ever comes.

Monday, March 7, 2011

& now she's 3!

3 years ago, there was a Mother in China that gave birth to this sweet little girl that would become my daughter.

I find her birthday to be an emotional day for me and the upcoming period of time as her birth mother loved her, nursed her and then made the ultimate sacrifice to abandon her some time later, which would set her on her journey that would ultimately bring her to the other side of the world, where we would become her parents. I'm in awe of the journey. In awe that we, who are so undeserving, would be chosen to love her for the rest of her life. I am humbled by her journey and grateful for exactly the way it played out. Every agonizing second of the wait, was only part of the journey that made it possible for her, Wan Hu Ling, to become my daughter.

Within the past year, my girl has blossomed in indescribable ways.
She is my hero.

So we honored her birthday with simple little gifts and then invited our friends over to sing the "Happy Birthday to Me" song that she so loves to hear and delight in her cake.
It's all about having balloons and cake in her eyes.

As a Mother, I have a pain not knowing what time of day was she born. Was it early or late? Was she born alone or were there adoring eyes that wanted to meet her as she took her first breath. Millions of unanswered questions that will just be chalked up to part of her journey.

Oh how I wish I could give her her full story, the story of who she is and why we have her now. I can't, so we move forward in life and I hope all of her questions are answered one day and her birth mother feels deep within her soul that the child she gave up is so deeply loved.

Every year I add a bead to her growing Pand0ra bracelet that I will give her when she's 13. Or at least that's the age I have in my head for now.
This year I gave her the Guardian Angel bead, mainly because her Auntie A always calls her 'Angel Girl' and when I saw it, I thought of EG.

One of her 16 gifts from China.

Welcome to your 3rd year of life angel girl!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Pic Update

These were taken on EG's 1st day of school.

She was so excited...can you feel it?

Again, I'm totally blown away by how well she has adjusted.
I swear, it's only by the grace of God she has adjusted this well.

We have yet to have 1 bad day, though she has lost 3 bows=0(
She's actually bonded better with Daddy. Suddenly, she cries for Daddy all the time and wants him, especially if Mommy is not giving her the answer she so desires. She is slowly, but steadily becoming a Daddy's girl.
She happily goes to school every morning and comes running when I pick her up. She is learning so much so fast. We started her in the 3 year old room, since I didn't want her to spend 1 month in a room and then switch. So all of the kids are older than her, but EG is very mature in so many ways and completely immature emotionally.
Speaking of 2 and 3's...guess who is turning 3 in 3 days. Hard to believe she is already 3.
Like most adoptive Mom's, I wonder if her birth mother is thinking of her during this time, the time where she carried her inside of her and felt her kick. According to her story, she loved her a while before she made the decision to give her up & if she is, I pray she feels how loved this one little girl will always be.
& finally, a picture of the new snaggletooth in our home....

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