Thursday, December 29, 2011

Fire and Ice (Poem)

Fire Parent
protective of their mind and body
anger at what can't be fixed or controlled
battling for every step forward
pushing for every right, every privilege

Ice Parent
mourns what can never be
wishes quietly on the star for what could be
hides tears and fakes laughter
sometimes quits for just a moment

Fire Child
Fights the noise and lights and pain
knows the different but desires the same
Anger at what they just don't understand
pushing for a norm that can handle them

Ice Child
hurts but can't tell anyone
is alone in a crowd but crowded out even alone
wishes to know how to laugh and cry
sometimes quits for just a moment

Fire Family
Marches against the odds
stomps on the preconceived notions
together overcoming the moments that make each day
pushes for and sometimes reaching a balance

Ice Family
treasures the quiet victories
makes smiles from moments others don't understand
deals and learns to make it work
knows the value of together, family, little moments

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Faces Of The Updated American Revolution

"People shouldn't be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people." ~ V
I occupy Detroit everyday. I am part of the 99%, the 53% and even part of the 100%. I am the 100% American person who is scared of where our nation is heading, the direction the world is turning, and the future my children face. I am an Updated American Revolutionist.

I love to listen to people bicker about things that come down to the same fix point or to the same outcome. I laugh, cry and shake my head at how we all seem to want the same thing but can't figure out how to get along long enough to see it come through.

The funniest thing (not ha-ha funny but gee you people are nuts funny) about our country right now is that most of us see that there is something VERY wrong with it but we are spending so much time arguing about methods that the people with power are continuing to do the damage they want so they can have more power.... AND YOU ALL ARE LETTING THEM.

WHY? Because I am different than you, he went to a local college and you went to Harvard, their need for disability must mean they are too lazy to be aware of the world. Stupid. We may not agree with how the other people are doing things to get their message out but if we were to look a little closer we may find common desires. And if we could stop pointing fingers and work on common ground and proven solutions, we may find that we hold the answers to getting things done. BUT if we don't do something and soon, we will only see more and more freedoms lost, government control of our thoughts, and world we wouldn't want cockroaches let alone children living in.


Have you seen the pictures of people holding up a paper with their story and ending with "I am the 99%" or something like it? I have read many of them and can honestly say that I understand them, have been there, and have had friends who have been there. I have also had friends pick apart these stories and say that the people on the other side of the paper are solely responsible for their lives. 

I think that while we are responsible for our own choices and how we deal with life, there are many things beyond our control. Would the auto workers have chosen to out source their jobs to a foreign country? Should they have to work for a wage that is less then what is livable in our modern country to keep those jobs here? Is it only their wages that made it to costly for their employers to stay here? I mean is it really that hard to see that that there is no simple cause and effect scenario? Take Detroit teachers. Unions screwed them, the city stomped on them and the kids try to shoot them. They had no real voice in the end and they are still blamed for the outcome. 

Then there are the 53% folks who have their own stories. They talk about being down but working to get back up. They tend to be above the 99%-ers but really tell similar tales. They call the other folks names and say how they are just lazy hippy types. But some of them went to school beside these same people, have the same bills to pay and the same struggles. They just lay the blame more on a political party than on the wealthy class. They are often the class we used to call the middle class. We are seeing them become more and more like the poor-working class everyday. Soon enough they will have that one emergency that makes them more of the 99% then they will like.

Both Percents complain about the freedoms, the jobs, the cost of things, the way American is changing and the over all state of politics. The main differences between the two is their ideas on who's to blame and how to fix it. The main problem between them is that they are too busy finger pointing and complaining that they aren't making the changes that need to be made. And the methods they use when they do try to make changes only adds to the unrest without making a dent in the way things are going.

Then there are those who aren't worried about anything. They have more than enough. They just want to see things continue to go their way. BUT they might be behind the politician that can further what they think is a good for them idea but that the others are against. They might agree with the others that something the government is passing may be harmful. So there is common ground in every area.

"No group is as good as the best example or as bad as the worst."

We need to come together on the primary point: That things can not go on this way! We are losing our rights a day at a time. They hide them in fluff so we won't notice until it is too late. We are losing our way of life, the chance to reach for and achieve the American Dream. We are becoming nothing more than a living example of a scary futuristic novel. While none of the sides can be totally wrong, they can also not be totally right. We need to figure out the common ground and build there. Compromise where we can. Here is an easy one: You can carry a legal gun and I can choose to not carry a life. See, it really isn't that hard.

We also need to figure out the common enemy. I know that is a bit harder but even Charles Dickens knew that poverty and ignorance were bad things. We can agree that things aren't going as we need them to so who is keeping it that way? 

Corporations are both good and bad so they can't all be our enemy. Find the bad and keep them from repeating those same mess ups. Keep the good and reward them for their good actions so they repeat them. Simple really, as long as you look to find out what the real issue is. Checks and balances. 

Unions and Governments have their own issues and the statement I made about the corporations can apply to them. They need to me put in their places and brought back to the good they were intended to be. We the people need to remember that we hired them and we should be able to fire them.

And about that... You really need to watch your local governing folks carefully because they are sneaking things in while you are looking at DC and Wall Street. Here is one little example. The Governor of MI reworded the law that says he can can take over a city that is in financial trouble and hand it over to a city Emergency Manager that used to be a Emergency Financial Manager.

"If you don’t feel like sugar-coating it, the emergency manager—Pontiac is one of three Michigan cities currently run by one—is an admission that democracy occasionally doesn’t work. Michigan introduced an emergency “financial” manager law in 1990, as a way to straitjacket cities that were failing. Schimmel made his reputation running turnarounds in the small, benighted cities limning Detroit. He succeeded, largely, but he was frustrated by limits."

Be Aware of what they are doing because on all level of governments and all areas of your life, they are trying to limit your freedoms. If they have their way they will even limit this medium of communication.

I am getting by day to day so things can be tough for us around here. My tip jar doesn't get much so I don't give it much thought. (It's up there on the right if you feel the need to take a look) but recently Santa stopped by and left me a few gifts that blew my mind. 
Thank You goes to my dear sister who drove over 10 hours to give me a 97 Voyager, as well as to make sure my kids each had at least one gift from their Santa list. (she did far more)

Thank You goes to a dear friend who made a special gift for my girls and sent me some words that made my heart sing.

And a Special Thank You to a loyal and supportive reader who made sure I could feed my family this week and next. He doesn't know how much his tip jar gift meant to me and to the kids.

Thanks to everyone who supports me in any way they can. When you read my posts, send me words of support, and are just part of my world... you make it better.

Know Peace but fight for what's right!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Special Manners 101: Not Rude, Just Life

Before I get into the meat of this article, I want to share a link to a story that a friend sent my way: Check out Zilla's Blog Here, and then go read an article about how SEIU is taking money out of the medicaid monies that people receive if they care for their adult special needs children at home. This could be my future. I would fight this to no end.... or at least to a pay check and state pension. 

Now mind you, the most a person gets for being on SSI is $674 here in Michigan. That doesn't go really far when there are medications to buy, diapers to change and wheelchairs to push. There isn't much that you can live on when you only have that much to make it through. Think rent, medicines, food, health needs, transportation... ect....

Special Manners 101: Not Rude, Just Life

Holiday get togethers, birthday parties, and field trips to crowded places are wonderful times for people to share. Well, most people anyway. Special needs people and their families love that you think enough of them to invite them. Some of those trips and settings are appropriate for them, and others are not. Please understand when we politely say "No, Thank you."

A wheel bound child might not like to go to the park that isn't set up to be inclusive for their disability. A formal sit down Thanksgiving meal may not be the greatest place for two Autistic children. A concert with limited handicap access may not be what Billy had in mind for his birthday gift.

It isn't that we don't like your home, it is that we respect the other people that will be there as well as our children enough to know that we should stay home. Everyone will have a better time if they aren't forced to deal with people who just don't understand the way their world works. My kids don't get your world and you don't get theirs. Sitting in your nice home that has never known children with tons of adults being adults would be hard for any child but even more so for one with disabilities. It isn't us being rude it is just our life.

When we plan a party for our kids it is in a time and place that we know they can deal with. It is geared to keep them safe, balanced, and content. We don't want anything less for your child so we will think of them and wish them the happiest of time but not subject each other to the chaos that could come from taking my sensory sensitive child into a crowded pizza play house. It isn't us being rude, it is just our life.

Special Manner #106: Accept that we are doing what is best for everyone. We are not thinking of just us, but you as well. It is a matter of respect, safety, ease, common sense and common courtesy. And before you think it or worse, say it... no I will not force my children to conform any more then they need to. Yes, they have to learn manners and such but they don't need to be forced into extreme, inescapable situations that we KNOW they can't handle. It isn't them being bad, spoiled, or rude, it is just their life.

If I choose to stay home because of my children, then I take responsibility for staying home. My life my choice. If you want to talk about, fine, but to give me cheap shots because you disagree with my handling of something only makes YOU look small and rude. If you truly care about me and mine than you find away to include us with out question or ridicule. Bring us a plate of left overs, save us a piece of cake, or simply accept us as we are, because we are.

Enjoy the Holiday Season. Know Love, Peace, and Hope.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Bad Apples Spoils The Basket

No Group Is As Good As Its Best Example,
Or As Bad As Its Worst.

The problem with anyone grouping people, races, religion, movements, parties, and classes together is that it makes assumptions that everyone with in that group is the same. That is simple crap.

People may have the same general thought or characteristic (such as a bank account) in common but be very different with how they got to that thought, what it means to them, and what they do with it. If you take any group as a whole for their individual action or motto, then you aren't really getting to the truth of the issues. You are doing a disservice to yourself as well as to them.

~~ And do not trust any one media source to tell you the truth. ~~

Let's just think this out for a minute. If you take the label out of any statement it loses its fire. People won't pay it the same kind of attention. If you want people to get their britches in a bunch, tell them how the people they are upset at did something they won't like. Don't tell them anything that may show the undesirables in a better light. 

Labels and the bad news is how people (MSM, politicians, and your in-laws) TRY to control you and your support. Think about what you hear: the Tea Party is against your race, the OWS movement is costing you jobs, the Republicans want to control your body, and the Democrats are giving all your cash to the lazy poor. They get you to hate a group, a label, a cause that is against theirs. 

Go ahead and tell me that it doesn't work.

If you spend your life hearing from respected people that: the Blacks will steal you blind, the Whites still make slaves of other cultures, Pagans all worship the devil, American Indians are all drunks, and the Christians are really using their faith to cover a sex ring - then you will believe what you were taught until you apply your own logic and knowledge.

It is a flawed way to control people who really can think about their own lives and know that they have seen the truth for what it is. And American's are starting to waken up and look at their lives and how they got where they are. People are slowly learning to look at the smaller details with-in the whole picture.

Don't you ever get lumped in with a group that you may share some trait with  but then feel put out because really they are the whole of you or your thoughts? 

Learn to look deeper then the group to see what the people are made up as before you judge. One jerk slicing an officer shouldn't say that all Occupiers as violent. One photo shopped picture doesn't make all Tea Party members fakes. One dumb racist prick shouldn't mark all of that race as evil. Know a faith before you paint horns on the one trying to save the Earth. 
How hard is this???? .... um.... never mind.... Don't answer that.
Even in the special needs community we are careful how we word our labels. If your child is labeled well then there are service to help them. If they are under labeled then you have more to carry on your own. If they have the wrong label or are correctly labeled but it is a label insurance company doesn't like then we are in all kinds of trouble. And then there are the people who think our child's label is what makes or breaks them. It is all they are. Never are my children the sum of their labels.
Tolerance, Understanding, Information, and simply letting people be people will go a long way to solving the issues that Labels create.

OK So My Point: 

If you hear of 3 people in a crowd of 100 doing something out of the norm of the group, then you should have a good idea of the true nature of the group by looking at the whole.

If you don't understand what the group stands for believes in, wants out of life.... try talking to them, reading about them (and not using MSM alone), LEARN before you judge.

Check and re-check what you think you know with what you can prove from your own life experiences. If you have know 50 cops in your life and only one was kicked off the force for bad behavior then you have a good indication that most cops want to do their job as best they can so the media may be full of garbage if it says that most cops are dirty. 

Don't judge. And if you feel you have to take a side, learn the good and bad of both sides before you do. Don't just go with the one you always have because you always have.


Saturday, November 5, 2011

The Updated American Revolution

The Updated American Revolution

"There are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpation." - Founding Father James Madison


Why do people revolt against anything? They revolt against perceived injustices. They fight back against people causing harm to the ones they love. They take up arms when people steal from them or when they feel there is no choice. They fight for their rights to live like humans.

Lobsters are a strange lot. They don’t know that they are being boiled alive until it is too late. Sometimes though, one will revolt and head for the top of the pot hoping to change his fate. Too many Americans don’t realize that the fire is on and turned way up. The water is starting to get really hot. Now is the time to change the pot we are in because it’s not just hot, it is boiling over.

You may not agree with the methods behind the Occupy Movement. You may not agree with all they have to say or what you have heard that they want to have happen. You may think they are not an organization and lack an over all structure. You may have seen clips of one protester using a police vehicle as a toilet and other clips showing unruly cops.

Set aside those thoughts long enough to understand that it is made up of people just like you. They are everyday people who have found that they can not make it as things are. They are poor, middle class, and even some rich. They are students and parents. They are young and old. They are just everyday people who have their own reason for standing up. It is everyday people that will make or break the future of America. Click here for a great look at what the press hasn’t shown you.

There is the bottom line that we should all take from the Movement no matter what political affiliation we hold, no matter what our bank account looks like, or what we think of their methods. That bottom line is that something has to be done and only ‘We The People’ can make it happen.

If not a revolution then a civil war!

Polls are showing that 80 percent of Americans are unhappy with how the country is being governed. The two major political parties seem unable to work together to fix what is broken. There has been a growing support for an alternative to those politicians. The smaller parties aren’t powerful enough to breach the divide. It is time to find a better system, and maybe a better political party.

As Americans, we need to band together to create a system, a party that can replace those already in power. We need to forget what is different and use what we view as the same. We need to organize. We, as a nation, need to get it together and stand united against the threat to our way of life because if we don’t things will be forever changed in the worst possible way. If you are a hard working American who wants to see this country get back to being the greatest in the free world than it is time for you to stand up for it.


There are not enough jobs to meet the needs of the American people. Ignore the unemployment numbers that you see posted by the financial or government institutes for a moment because they do not include the people who took jobs that are not enough to maintain their life style or even their downsized life. It doesn’t include the folks who gave up finding something, the ones who tried going back to school, or the ones who just disappeared off the radar because they are now part of the nameless, faceless homeless.

There are families that have to choose between dinner and medicine. Having to spend money on high priced gas just to get to their low paying job is sometimes impossible. They are trying to find ways to make do on less while the government slowly takes away their rights.

You have to pay the electric company because if you go off grid and don’t “have electric” you can lose your children. But that same electric company makes it a habit to cut off families every early fall before the November cut off date that makes it illegal to do so. That is the corrupt big business standards that people need to stand up against.

The government from the town level on up are full of corruption and greed that only leaves ‘We The People’ cleaning up their mess while trying to feed our families. They are putting laws into place that they have no right passing because they are about our basic freedoms.  The highest levels are full of back stabbing, ankle biting bull that makes it impossible to get things done.

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”
~ The Declaration Of Independence ~

We are losing our place in the world. We are losing our soldiers to pointless actions of aggression that lead us no where. Children are not being educated to their full potential. The rights and freedoms we hold dear are being stripped away a hidden law at time.

The rich are getting richer. The middle class is getting poorer. The poor are getting crushed under the weight of it all. People are starving for the first time in decades. It can and will happen to you if things continue along this untenable path.

What has to be done:

“Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable."- JFK

The people of The United States Of American need to band together to become more than any movement or any party. Together the common needs can be met, the common goals reached, and the common ground returned back to the American people. It needs to be “by the people, for the people,” a grass roots organization of caring concerned people who aren’t there to feather their nests at anyone’s expense.

YOU need to let go of the old party lines because they don’t work anymore. They are getting us into deeper and deeper trouble. We need to take the best common threads of all of our political ideologies  and weave them together to repair the fabric of our nation. 

Libertarian’s, The Tea Party, The Green Party…. They all have good ideas that are simply lost in all the noise. Band them together. Take the heart of the Occupy Movement, the people, and use it to create a better political party.

There are likely thousands of intelligent caring hard working respected Americans who would answer the call to serve not as soldiers in a battle but as politicians ready to right the listing ship that is America. There needs to be a great leader to take the voice of the people. We need this generation’s Martin Luther King. We need the greatness that helped the original revolution over come impossible odds. It’s to remember what this land stood for from the time the first settler found freedom from oppression. 

In 1776 the people of the USA wanted their own country, in 2011 its time to take it back!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Lazy Lazy Lazy (Special Manners 101 or A View)

Wake up at 6 am Monday through Friday to go scrapping. That is what the man does to bring in a living. He has a license unlike a lot of the scab scrappers that he must compete against. He drives through certain neighborhoods, takes any visible metals, and leaves the stuff as neat as when he came by. It drives him nuts to see the people who dig stuff out of trash bags or leave a mess or break glass all over lawns. He hates the way the scabs break into houses or steals the fencing from the roadsides. This is his job since he lost his to a medical condition he doesn't have insurance to treat.

He comes home after a couple of hours and helps with morning chores. He feeds the dogs and checks the property. He helps medicate the special needs child. He gets to work breaking down the scrap. The more you break it down into it's different metals the more you can earn. Now that winter is near there is wood to be split and a fire to tend over the course of the day.

The wife is homeschooling three kids. Two of them are special needs. She is trying to get all of the medical needs of the family met.She fills out that form, calls those people,pays that bill, puts off another and writes to these other folks. She juggles those chores with trying to earn a bit using the family computer, helping break down the scrap, and her own medical issues.

The family then loads up into the car to go to therapy 3 times a week totaling over 15 hours. Hubby has to drive because the wife has seizures. Wife handles the kid in therapy and the hubby watches over the other two kids. Then the other days of the week is the "other" appointments. There are doctors to see, tests to be run, groceries to fetch and scrap to turn in for gas and grocery money.

They get home just in time for Hubby to head out (Sunday through Thursday evenings) to do his scrap run. Wife and kids do the afternoon chores and play time. Play around their house is like therapy time. They do crafts for fine motor skills, play parachute or biking for gross motor, tell stories for social skills, and speech is practiced as often as possible. Wife makes dinner and hubby will do the dishes.

Nights are spent breaking down scrap and working in what ever way is needed. The kids are doing what ever they feel up to until story time. The chores every family has is worked into their day - showers and baths, diaper changes, and room cleaning. The same everyday stresses are there with the added stresses of medically fragile members of the family, bad moods, and bad physical days. There are money worries and days when parents don't eat so the kids can.

And it really gets rough when there is a need that needs to be met and no where to turn to get it. A breathing machine (nebulizer) breaks and the youngest can't breathe. A problem with the truck and there is no way to get money to feed the family. An extra bill or trip to the ER can turn the whole world upside down and side ways.

This is the reality being faced and balanced by many people (families) these days. Both of these parents had jobs 7 years ago. They made 75% more then they bring home now. Both are facing medical issues that aren't being addressed. Neither has a criminal record or cheat the system. The kids are relatively happy and are taken care of. This is their life.

People who say that the poor are just lazy have no idea what it's like. People who say there are plenty of jobs are clueless to the realities of today's world. People who don't understand where the "poor" (as a class) are coming from have simply never been there, done that. They must be made to see that they are not too far away from being here themselves. 

The reason the OWS/ 99% movement has caught on is because too many folks are falling without a net. They looked for work and couldn't find any. They have lost a house, a car, and all the stuff they once took for granted. No matter what political or OWS view you hold, you have to understand that things can't keep going on as they have if we are going to "recover" our nation as a nation, our world as a world.

I have not seen any answers I would call THE ONE, but I am at least seeing people trying to come up with solutions. That is progress. Instead of stamping down on the efforts of those trying to make a difference, or those folks just trying to make it through the day, why not BE the change the world needs? I am personally sick of the hate and fighting when we should all be doing what we can for each other.

The sooner we get together and work together on practical, down to Earth solutions that work for everyone, the sooner we will once again be everything we claim to be as a people. There will always be rich and poor but the poor doesn't have to be THAT poor, the poor that wipes out hope and happiness.  

BALANCE IN ALL THINGS. The family I talked about would be happy with enough. Not fancy, or even modern... just enough. Enough food, enough warmth, enough care. Why is that such a  problem for people to wrap their minds around? What is enough? Enough food is when everyone goes to be having eaten dinner every night of the month. Enough is when we don't worry about leaving our children as orphans because we can't get the treatments to cure our illness. Enough is not a 6 month wait for a 3 year old's leg braces. 

This came out as more of a rant then I intended but I guess if more of us spoke of what we know, what we see, then we wouldn't have fallen so far behind. Stand up and fight or you will fall.... and soon.

Know peace. Know love, Know how to share.

Monday, October 17, 2011

The Look Of Parenthood

Do you remember me telling you about the sounds of parenthood? It can be found Here. Some of those sounds are wonderful, some horrible, a lot can be recalled with ease in memories. There are pictures in our mind that we parents carry with us long after the drama of the moment has faded.

Before I go into that, please go to a great article about Dragon Parents Here. It talks about parenting a terminally ill child. It is a very touching, heart felt article that is well worth the read.

In that article the author says: 
"We are dragon parents: fierce and loyal and loving as hell. Our experiences have taught us how to parent for the here and now, for the sake of parenting, for the humanity implicit in the act itself, though this runs counter to traditional wisdom and advice."
This is my addition to that thought:
This applies not just to the parents of the terminally ill but also those of us parents who are aware that we have no idea how our children will grow or if they will. Rowan has no syndrome to tell us what the future holds, what questions are the right ones, and if we are doing it right. We face each day as if it is his first and his last, just in case it is. And we do that for the family, as a whole.
We take pictures with our phones, our digital cameras, and of course a bit of video. None of them have the impact of the ones we carry in our mind and some get imprinted on our souls. 
Parents hold onto the ultrasound of the little alien creature just coming into life. They take five million shots of the sleeping newborn and twice that of the first steps. There are 12 plus years of school head shots and the graduation pictures. There are Holidays and family get together pictures. 
Sometimes we take pictures to document things like a fender bender, a fallen tree and the expensive bike. We will send a photo of something we want to sell or give away.
Some pictures are harder to deal with. They are the true "Look" at ourselves, our family, our lives. We carry them with in ourselves even if there is no photo to hang on a wall.
This is a picture of my 4 year old taken yesterday. It is a shot of him 3 hours after a daytime seizure. This is a look he tried to give me in response to a  question I asked him. This is the type of picture I don't need a photo to carry with me. 
How many parents carry pictures of the bruises a bully inflicted on their child? How many have the video of their baby screaming as they get the treatments to fight the cancer that is slowly draining them of the energy to even whimper? How many have lost a child and see them in their casket?
There is somethings that we can not change or protect the children from. But if we are wise we will hold tight to those pictures of good moments, of happy times, of smiles.... no matter what tries to fade them away.
Make the memories your children carry with them the best that you can. And treasure them yourself. You would be amazed how much you will find comfort in them when there are tears falling.

The many looks of parent hood are based on the looks of our family. We carry the good, the bad, the ugly. We wear them in the lines around our mouth and at the corners of our eyes. We show them off in our attitudes toward others. 
**Know love, peace, and respect by giving it to others.**

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Occupy This

Now, I want to talk to you about life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. 

I know that there are many different things happening in the world right now. Some of you worry, some of you don't, and some of us watch, take notes, worry a bit, but choose to live life as it flows. I'm from that last group. Things for the next year or so (I think say November 2012 will be an interesting time) are going to be rocky at best. So hang on to your hat, buckle up, and know what you need to know in order to let most of it flow past you harmlessly. 

Politics are going to be dicey. 

There is going to be either a return of the current president, which will upset folks, or a new Republican in office, which will be bad to other folk's way of thinking. Because there are sooooooo many extremes in both camps it is necessary to watch for fall out.

Before the election, there is going to be the usual pony play, the normal dances, and the over done game play that is really not helping our country in the least. AND ALL sides are doing it, not just the side you don't like. You know I'm right.

The problem with the parties playing the game in the usual fashion is that we as a nation and as a world, are not in our usual comfortable place that allows us to just play along.

Economic Woes

If you follow my blog, then you know that the poor are fighting to just keep their heads above water and it's only getting worse. There has been major changes in some states, like Michigan, that are making it even harder on some folks.

The middle class has been downgraded to the upper poor and the poor are now the below poverty level, and anyone below that is the forgotten class. There are those who are comfortable with life such as it is, but many more who are looking to blame someone.

In the past it was all the politician's fault but now people are looking to spread that blame out to the banks, the businesses, the people with money. If jobs are still being lost, kids being sent to foster care because they get the lights shut off, if people have to choose food over medicine they are going to keep getting mad.

The Basic Rights of America

People have lived in America thinking that this is the land of the free, that we have the right to be who and what we are, and that we can have our voices heard and put into place.

No one should have the right to limit what I feed my kids, how I practice my religion, or how I make ends meet as long as I do all of the above with in the laws that I helped vote in and am not causing unjust harm. But the latest trend is for one set of folks to tell another set of folks how to live, what to eat, and how they should care for themselves and those around them.

With those freedoms come the right to choose, to have a job, and to let other folks live out their lives according to our laws and their faith. BUT it also means that I have the responsibility to vote, to look out for others because if we fail in part - America fails in whole, and to take care of my own house (life).

The World

The world is full of issues. They are fighting for space, faith, human rights, economic uprisings, and food. Their issues affect our issues. We need to be aware and help when we can but we need to stop butting in where we don't belong and need to take care of our own home first. 

Even as you share what you have with your neighbor, you first feed your own children.

My Point

I know there is more I could and should say but my chest hurts and since there is still no medical I think I'll rap it up and try some rest. 

We are all in this together no matter what race we are, who we love, how much money we earned last year, or who our God is or isn't. When some of us fail in reality it really does touch all of us. So if we are to get through the global and national uprising that is sure to "trickle" down to our everyday lives we need to be there for each other.

Vote, and stand up for what is right not just what is popular. Share what you can because you may need someone to share with you at some point. Be there for each other. Stock up on the important stuff be cause even mother nature is in a bitchy mood. Stop taking other people's inventory. The government needs to keep our country running and let folks run their own lives. And giving a little to those who need help is not a bad thing. 

Occupy the Earth knowing that you aren't the only one here. You can't have it all your way and neither can "they" - no one should even want it all.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

How Hard Working Poor Make Their Pennies

"Simple facts as I see them: No group is as great as the best member or as bad as the worst. My home should be run by me, not the government or extended family and strangers as long as I maintain the health and well being of my family. My children will always come before anyone else. No extreme is a good extreme - Balance is key. Love is a must. Friendship is the flower of life's garden. Learning is life long. Smiles are the best kind of gift you can share with another. Peace - in mind, in home, in the world is a great goal. Contentment is a good thing. ♥ I wish you happiness ♥"

So what are we doing to make it through these tough times? How are those of us that are unemployed, going to school, and/or too unhealthy to work normal jobs making ends kind of meet?
We are writing books, blogging, making crafts, doing odd jobs, begging, borrowing, and doing what ever we can find to earn a penny or two. Below I'm going to share a bit of that with you in case you need some pennies. I'm also going to suggest a few folks you can look up, help out, start your christmas shopping with or just drop a few coins in their tip jars (like mine up there at the top right of this page) Good luck and Thank you!
Tip #1: Avoid any job that ask you for money. None of them are real (and if they are, please tell me about them) You can make a bit of money from "party" selling companies like Avon, but you have start up costs and they do take a bit of work to keep in the black.
If you like Avon and want a reliable dealer, check out my friend Rachel. Tell her Tammy sent you. Click here, too.
Tip #2: If you are a writer or even a commenter there are plenty of places to sell your thoughts for a part of a penny. I met many wonderful folks at MyLot though it has changed a lot since I started and even more since it started. Triond is a good place to post your poems, articles, and pictures. You will not make it rich on any site like these but you will find friends, some extra income, and you will be out there for others to see.
Tip #3: Sign up for legitimate work from home blogs and newsletters. You will know they are good because they won't sell you anything without clearly saying this is an ad, we are selling this, and it is what allows us to give you the free stuff.
Tip #4: If you good at research, transcript work, surveys and other such things try micro-working. It is not a lot of money but it's better then say tip #2 for me anyway. I work at M-Turk mostly and earn upwards of $50 a week on a great week. Be careful of scammers that sneak in. 
There are your starter tips. Now for some ways to help out the cause:
#1. When you want to shop anyway, click an ad or shop a store from a blogger's site or find a "at home" company. You are most likely helping out someone who really needs it. And if you have a business you can always place an ad with one of these bloggers. (I have great rates...)
A great example of this can be found at my right wing friends blog. Zilla not only has the ads, and tip jar but a store as well. She is one of the working class poor that still can't make it a full month on the paycheck her family works hard to bring in. Her family blog can be found here

#2. Many folks with blogs or causes sell their wares at to earn a few extra pennies.
To see an example of that, here is the site of a liberal who is very much for a return of our current president. He set this site up originally to help a friend get surgery and at the time was out of work. He has recently been hired back into the work place. 
#3. Buy Books from Independent Authors:
Here is a great Christian book that is done in a wonderfully simple yet deep way. The author is a man that has known the good and the bad of our politics, economy, faith, and family. Check out the FaceBook page to find Cuppa Christ: Coffee Break Devotions.
Politics and reality more your cuppa tea? Then check out Steve Knies. His books are a rare treat. I admire the author who went back to school recently to start over and has come out fighting. He still needs our support and his books make for great gifts.
How about some dark, bloody, horror type reading? The author of  Kickshaw Candies is R.K. Finnell. She is the mother of a special needs child who knows what it's like to struggle to get the necessary items to make life more manageable for her child. 
#4. Do you want to support some good causes, learn more about a cause, or just help out some good people who do good work?
Check out the Recycling Occupational Therapist and her great book.  
Heartfelt Inspiration's makes useable crafts from clothing to stress balls and feeding tube covers. I have bought many things from this reliable seller and one christmas she helped my children have gifts. She too s a special needs mom.
Buttons and More makes Autism Awareness products because children with Autism grow into adults with Autism. People forget sometimes.
#5: Others I want to shout out to just because:
Go Green on your next building project with Urban Aesthetics, LLC
Extraordinary Tails  works hard to save pets, as do their many friends. They are a great group of folks. So if you are an animal lover, show them some love. 
Some great wood working items done by a great guy can be found at The Art Of Infinite Thread.
There are more of my pals that I would like to tell you about but there is time for that in another blog. Remember everyone, that we are in this together and none of us will make it without helping each other out. You can help each other simply by spreading the word. It's better if you can spend your time and money helping those in need by giving them work. Order their product, read or watch what they produce, and share their talents.
For myself, I must ask that you remember that I get paid through the tip jar at the top of the page, and that the money you give goes to help feed my family. With out my friends, Family, and readers we would not have made it this far. For all of those that have helped in the past, Thank You.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Dying To Be Poor

There is a difference between starving in America and starving in some other country. It is simply that those in America aren't supposed to be hungry, cold, or unduly tired because we are in America. We are the place where people went to get away from overlords and oppressors. We had religious freedom, basic opportunities and all the sunshine people could handle.  Ok, so maybe it hasn't all been rainbows and unicorn farts but we still thought we were better then that. We had hope that we could be better and grow and catch that golden ring. How many really hold out that hope anymore?

There are two articles that ask if poverty is a death sentence, both written by folks we allowed into office. 

They both have points and reasons. They both have comments (that you know you should read) that show what their readers think. And they both lack a real honest clue to the real honest way of life that the poor deal with.

Sen. Rand Paul's article says that being poor is not a death sentence because the "poor" home in America may have things like a television, a microwave, and a car. He says that the poor doesn't die of malaria like they do in Africa, so it is all good. The poor are living twice as long as they did 100 years ago and those that die can be tied to poor eating habits, smoking, and other poor people. He also seems to think that you are only poor for a minute (or 15 years) unless you are of course too lazy to overcome the government funded dependency on the handouts of real taxpayers.

Sen. Bernie Sanders has a different take. He says we are all dying because there is over 49 million American's without medical insurance or the real means to get it. He says the higher and political class doesn't care because the lower class tends not to vote (watch me) and there aren't major lobbyists fighting for the poor. He doesn't think of the poor as having this or that, but as not having the basics like a reliable car, meals everyday, and healthcare. He thinks about the fact that we have so many children living below the poverty line in our so called "rich" country. If you are poor you are going to live 6.5 years less then if you were upper or middle class. He thinks it's going to get worse because what was the middle class is now becoming the poor and the poor are becoming the dregs of our well off country. 

Now go read the comments on both articles. Did you start shaking your head and sighing deeply as you read? Did you see the extremes in our nation? Did you see the total lack of understanding between the haves and the have-nots? Now I'm going to give you a third view based on someone who was a child that lived below the poverty line, lives there now, and for the record doesn't receive anything from the tax payers but medical for my kids and the amount a few of you drop into the tip jar up at the top of this page. (which I am ever grateful for)

What is a "poor" life defined as? 

Depends on who you ask but we'll go with my definition because it is after all my blog. 

A "Poor Life" is a life that is known for a daily struggle to get basic needs met. This means the family or person worries about food, shelter, warmth, fuel, education, and health care (and so on) almost daily. Does it mean that they have no comforts or happiness? No, and why do so many wish that on them? They live pay check to pay check and  are one car repair, trip to the ER, or extra bill away from drowning. But many still see the gifts in family and country. They have hope and faith that things will get easier, better, and saner.

Can someone with those worries have a television, a car, or even a *gasp* video game? Yes. You don't know how they got them, who paid for them, or when they were bought. You have to have a car to get to and from doctors and work. You should be able to give children something that other kids have without people looking down their nose at you. And for those of you who seem to think people should sell these things if they are really that hungry, here's some reality for you: not everything has a resale value, people shouldn't have to give up their children's toys for food, and you NEED a car and home.

Jobs are not so easily found. In Michigan the unemployment rate is at over 11% and rising. Pay rates are not going up even though the cost of living is.

Food costs are rising. It is projected that the cost of eating will increase by 4.5% in 2011. Housing costs are high, taking about 30% of a person's income. Gas prices are unstable at best and painful for most.

There is a great article that speaks of the realities in numbers most folks can understand Here. Here is another on the class differences.

So how is "Poor" killing folks? 

Lack of affordable healthcare and insurance is one way. If you can't afford the basics then somethings have to go. Insurance is one of the front runners. It is expensive, it is usually not enough to cover everything anyway, and it doesn't feed the kids.

Lack of dental care can be fatal. Did you know that? Yep, it's the truth. If you can't afford the doctor you sure aren't going to rush out to the dentists. Oh, and due to so many folks not paying their bills there is few doctors and dentists willing to take payments anymore.

Living in a tent, a car, or unheated home causes all sorts of possible ways to die. I know of an elderly couple that was using candles and kerosine to heat and light their home. He had worked years, she had raised a family. They weren't trash, the bills just got to be too much so their electric was shut off.

Read the paper, look online and you will find one major, scary, heart ripping fact that they are saying is on the rise since the fall of the economy has started. Children are dying of starvation, abuse, and neglect. Yes, here in America.

Even the heat (and cold) singles out the poor and elderly. They can't control the weather can they?

What does the "poor" give up, cut back on, choose between?

Here is an example that most of my women readers will understand completely. There are somethings that we just shouldn't have to take the crappy brand of and when we have to it slams home just what place we are at. A woman's monthly supplies should not have to be the cheap or homemade kind. They don't cut it. They suck big time. Add a medical problem that makes that time of month even worse and it makes them almost useless. 

So the guys understand: think about toilet paper quality and using the wrong kind for the job at hand or not having any at all. Which is not at all a rare thing in the world of the poor.

It is cheaper to buy easy crap food then to buy all the different fixings for a standard meal. And for those of you who are going to jump in with the "grow and can your own" line, please allow me to point out that that isn't always an option. Not all of us live in an area that makes that possible, have the know how, or the supplies to make it work. And it's hard to dig out the extra cash for anything when you are in the hole 3 paychecks down the line as it is.

Gas in the car must come in at the top of the list because you have to get to work, the doctors or what ever. You are really careful not to use it on nothing but the musts. It's like gold to the poor working man.

Food for the kids or the mom's medicines is a no-contest contest. Most parents put their kids first. Not all of us but a lot of us. Forget extras like school pictures, hair cuts, and Christmas. No new dresses, no parties at the bar, and no ice cream from the truck that makes that annoying noise. 

Some poor deaden their pain in any way they can.... drugs and drinking are the normal self medication, but most of us just argue with our spouses or hold them that much closer. We write a blog, work our piece of the American pie, or volunteer at the local shelter. We find our way to deal, to find happy and be a family. It doesn't mean we like it, deserve it, or don't wish for at least comfortable.

The Poor Voters Count:

The following are real people, real families, real voters:

A family of 4 in NY has a working adult, a disabled adult, and 2 children. There is one car. They live in a house that is paid for with the help of family. There is the normal gas, electric and water bills to pay. A cheap cable/ phone/ internet bundle to help bring in extra pennies from some on-line work. There are dollar store birthdays, no trips to fast food, and no vacations to Disney. This nice Republican family follows the "right" path. No drugs, no drinking, none of that trashy stuff folks have come to mind when they think of the poor. They VOTE. Yet they face hunger monthly. They have to pick diapers or medicine, food or gas to get hubby to his job, birthday cake or the internet that earns those pennies.

A family of 5, in another state, has a recently disabled adult that had worked most of his life, a disabled full time mother who has done her job for over 19 years, 2 disabled children and one tenacious almost teen. They live in a paid for house that may be taken for back taxes, their car belongs to someone else, and they too have the normal household bills. They have gotten family help to get the basic help for their kids. Therapy is sometimes cheaper when done at home but there is a cost in that as well. They spend over 15 hours a week getting the kid's needs met. Then there is doctors visits and trips to get the help they need to get dad back to work. He has been off work for months and still they are struggling to get the help he should be entitled to since he put in the money in from his paycheck for the over 25 years he worked. They are Democrats that follow the "right" path. They don't do drugs, smoke, or steal from others even if they live in the 'hood. They have to pick medicine or food, struggle to have gas to get to therapy, and put of medical care because there is no money for it. And they VOTE.

Too many people judge others without understanding. Too many don't understand that while the poor may be rich in love and tenderness, they still know hunger. 

I, myself, have laid curled up from the pain of no food for days. I was young at the time. A child - when I had no say. And as an adult I have made the choice to know that hunger again so my children wouldn't. No one understands how that feels if they have never known that kind of hunger or that choice.

I am watching this country with both hope and fear. There is no one size all fix but I would hope that people will be more open minded about the needs of the lower class and understand that a hand up isn't the same as a hand out but that both are sometimes needed and interchangeable. But I fear there is too much of a MY MONEY attitude to allow for the proper changes and adjustments to be made so that there is a balance between it all.

Be nice to each other please.

(Please ignore formatting issues: blogger is not acting like a good boy today)