Pandemic Holidays

Even though we did just experience a very unusual Christmas holiday due to COVID-19, I hope you were able to enjoy the holiday and remain safe! I have found Christmas different for a while now because growing up in the north, I always had a white Christmas. I have lived in the south for over 20 years now and since then, I have only had one white Christmas. You would think I would have adjusted to this change given it has been SO many years, but it still does not feel like Christmas without the snow covering the ground. In a sense, it is a good thing we do not get snow in the south often because there is not the necessary equipment to handle the snow, which makes basically everything shut down.

This Christmas was abnormal for people for various reasons, but mainly because of the safety issues due to COVID-19. It was recommended from the experts with the CDC to ONLY celebrate with those in your household. This made it so families were not able to have their “normal” Christmas celebrations. We all were forced to miss family members that do not live within our same four walls, which if you think about it is incredibly sad. Even with that said, many others had to get through the holidays either sick with COVID in an empty hospital room alone or after losing someone they care about who had been with them for years around the holidays.

Now that the Christmas of 2020 is in the past, how was your Christmas? I did work on Christmas Eve until 2:00 PM, which was not too bad. My husband works nights and did have to work Christmas Eve as well. The good thing is, we both work from home and even though I work during the day, I was able to spend most of Christmas Eve awake and with my husband! In previous years we spent Christmas Eve with my mother and stepfather, but that was not going to happen this year for other reasons besides COVID.

For the past 16 years, my husband and I would spend Christmas day with his side of the family. I know and understand how hard this Christmas was for my husband because he had spent all holidays for the last 42 years with his family and sadly was not able to see anyone this year. Despite having worked 10 long hours on Christmas Eve, I know without a doubt that my husband would have loved to spend even a few hours with his family, but unfortunately, COVID really put a damper on this as it did for so many others.

I am not trying to be negative, but with the number of cases and deaths that are continuing to escalate in every state and county, this year we needed to make some adjustments for the holidays. I do believe that if everyone followed the sensible and logical advice from the experts, there would be a much better chance the numbers would not increase due to a holiday, as they did after Thanksgiving. In all honesty, I do fear that after Christmas and New Year’s we are going to see a massive increase in both new cases and deaths. We have a few friends that are planning to bring in the New Year in the mountain where we all go snowboarding. This is something we have wanted to do for many years but have not been able to yet and this year we do not think it is safe. Unfortunately, my husband’s birthday is in early January and of course, he wanted to be in the mountains for his birthday.

Regrettably, due to COVID-19, we were not able to do the things we normally do in 2020. We did not get to celebrate my birthday and our anniversary at the beach as we have done for the past 9 years. We were not able to celebrate Thanksgiving with our family. We did not see either of our families at Christmas. We have not ever really gone anywhere for New Year’s because of how unsafe it is with the mass amounts of people driving intoxicated. My husband will not be able to do what he loves on his birthday, which is snowboarding. Y’all know how much I have urged masks and social distancing, but for reasons beyond my understanding, people in the United States will not do what they need to. My initial guess is people are listening to the misinformation they are hearing from the government and ignoring what the CDC is saying about this awful and very deadly virus. I cannot even strictly blame the government for this but can blame the sheer ignorance of many American people.

What country or state do you live in? How is your country or state handling this virus? I do know some countries that have been on lockdown and or have rules in place to keep their citizens safe. Even though the number of new cases and deaths is among the highest in the United States, the government has not and does not seem like they are going to do anything with regards to lockdowns OR mask mandates. Many people want to say that requiring masks is taking away their freedom, but I do not think that is the case at all. In fact, I think that either implementing a mask mandate or a lockdown for a few weeks would save many lives but doing nothing is NOT an option anymore! We need leadership in the United States so this virus will stop killing innocent people!

Thank you for stopping by my site today! I appreciate the time you have taken to read and hopefully leave a common with your thoughts. I always value what you have to say and will respond as quickly as I can! I know some of this post ended up being a little of a rant, but there is a lot of heart, and emotions in the mix as well. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Inspirational Wednesday

We have made it halfway through the week!

Happy Wednesday y’all! We are more than halfway through this short week, but it almost feels longer. I don’t know if it is just me, but I always think the short weeks feel like a couple weeks combined into one. I guess it is because in the mortgage world we are trying to get everything purchased in fewer days. Even though the past few days have been busy, I am happy that I will be out of work at 2:00 on Thursday and off on Friday!

The holidays this year are mildly stressful, actually they are extremely stressful. I guess my reason for being a little more nervous than others is because my immune system is not good at all. I worry that if I were to stop being terrified and I get COVID-19, my survival is not good. I know what would be best for my health and stress, but I also do not want to disappoint anyone. Do y’all have holiday plans?

With it being our halfway point in the week, I feel we could all use a little inspiration to keep us going. Times are difficult, challenging, and upsetting, but we need to try our best to keep pushing forward. I hope the quote I am sharing today will provide you some inspiration and some additional happiness!

Thank you for visiting my site today! I hope you have a great and safe day! I do look forward to reading your thoughts on the quote I shared and your holiday plans. I promise to respond to all comments as quickly as I possibly can. Whatever you have planned for the upcoming holidays, please be sure to follow the advise of the health professionals. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Holidays will be different this year

2020 has been a year that has been full of increased stress and uncertainty for our safety due to COVID-19. Many people have been deeply troubled by this issue and for good reason. Since the pandemic invaded the United States there have been warnings and advisement from experts, but then there has been a ridiculous amount of misinformation as well. The truth is, politicians and people in general lie, but this is not a political situation and numbers, nor science lies. We can all hear with our ears and see with our own eyes the monumental amounts of deaths each day. This profoundly serious matter should have never become this out of control but should have been addressed in a more logical, and efficient way from the start

We have already made it through one holiday, where family and friends congregate in the home. During the next two weeks, we have two more holidays to find a way to enjoy and remain as safe as possible. Next week is Christmas. This used to be a holiday we all look forward to because we can see the joy in a child’s eyes when they wait for Santa and his reindeer to come! There was always so much joy in the air getting together with family and enjoying the Christmas feast created by mothers and grandmothers.

Christmas of 2020 is OR at least should be a lot different this year. COVID-19 has already taken the lives of 319,000 people in the United States where I live, and this number increases steadily daily. This virus has no boundaries and will effortlessly take the life of anyone it encounters. Of course, there are some that are at higher risk, but unfortunately, COVID-19 has even taken the lives of young and healthy people. Sadly, even those that were always careful, wore a mask when out of their home, disinfected everything, washed their hands numerous times a day, and hardly left the house in the first place, were infected with his virus and did not survive it.

Even though everyone around the world knows about this deadly virus, Christmas and New Year’s is still going to happen. There are ways to be able to enjoy the holidays safely. The ways to enjoy the holidays during a pandemic, some will not be happy with because they want to do as they have done every year before now, which really is not an option this year. If we want to be able to enjoy the holidays next year, we need to make some adjustments to our holiday celebrations. Although I do understand how isolating and stressful the pandemic has been, I am going to list a few ways to enjoy Christmas and New Year with the possibility to enjoy them next year the way we want to and reduce the spread of the virus.

Virtual celebration OR celebrating with those in your household is the safest way to enjoy the holidays this year. When I say your household, this means anyone you share common space with. This can be roommates, family, and people unrelated to you and they live under the same roof as you do. Anyone that does share the common spaces of your four walls should be considered as a different household, even if they are family members, but this will increase the risk of spreading COVID-19.

I am not completely naïve, and I do understand that people are going to do what they want to during the holidays because there are things we are just used to doing, especially this time of year. It will not matter what I say about the risks, but I will do is remind and explain what we should be mindful of during the next few weeks.

**Consider the increase in the cases of COVID-19 in the community you live in and the increase in cases where you would be going to celebrate the holidays. The information on the numbers of cases can be found on the local health department website OR on the CDC’s COVID tracker at https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#county-view.

**Exposure to the virus while traveling can increase drastically. The airports, train stations, bus stations, public transport, gas stations, and rest stop areas are all places you might encounter the virus. The exposure to COVID-19 may be in the air and or on surfaces.

**Indoor gatherings create more of a risk to the virus than outdoor gatherings. It is currently winter in many areas in the United States, which means colder temperatures. Bottom line is that most gatherings are going to be indoors, which can spread COVID-19 even more.

**Holiday gatherings, especially those that are indoors, might last longer periods of time and create further risks of spreading COVID-19.

**Anyone that is at the holiday celebration you attend that has NOT consistently followed social distancing (staying 6 feet apart), wearing a mask, hand washing, and other behaviors preventing the spread of the virus cause more risk to those who had been consistently practicing safety precautions.

People that should NOT attend in-person holiday gatherings are as follows:

*Recently diagnosed with COVID-19 and not met the criteria for being safe to be around others

*Currently has symptoms of COVID-19

*Waiting for COVID-19 viral test results

*May have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 in the last 14 days

**Is at risk for the severe risk of illness due to underlying medical conditions or an older adult

In the event you do go to an indoor holiday gathering, PLEASE be sure to wear a mask, wash your hands for at least 20 seconds several times a day, avoid getting too close to others, and just do everything you can to keep yourself as safe as possible! I do know that people want to enjoy the holidays, but we must do what is necessary so we can enjoy the holidays in the years to come!

Thank you for visiting my site today! I hope you enjoyed this post and it will help you during the holidays. I was not able to do my “Motivational Monday” post because I was dealing with a nasty headache that started on Sunday morning and carried over today. I am looking forward to reading your thoughts on this post and promise to respond as quickly as I can. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Inspirational Wednesday!

~Be Inspired, Stay Inspired & Inspire Others~

Happy Wednesday y’all! The good news about today is, we are halfway through the week and so much closer to the weekend! How is your week going so far? I think it is safe to say that every day has been pretty similar to Monday, which is not really a bad thing. I am still VERY ready for the weekend because I am tired of getting up early and dealing with the stresses of work. Even saying that, if overtime is offered this weekend, I will more than likely do it. Crazy, right?

It is easy to just go along with how things are in the world, but where is the inspiration in our world today? Exactly, it is missing. With this said, we must find our inspiration and try to always inspire those we are around. My hope is you are going to find some kind of inspiration in the quote I am sharing with y’all today. For most days, if we think about the great opportunities tomorrow offers us, instead of all the stresses and issues from yesterday, we are going to be much more successful and happy! But, what do you think? I would love to know and promise to respond to your comments as quickly as I can!

Our week is getting closer to the end and I know we all typically look forward to a carefree weekend but do you have any plans? As Christmas is getting closer and I know we all probably have Christmas wish lists we want to fulfill, but please do so in the safest way your possibly can. This is a time that online shopping is ideal because it is safe. Something on all our Christmas wish lists is probably that COVID will go away, but unfortunately, that wish might not happen this year. So what I am begging y’all to do, if you must leave the safety of your home, please do so in the safest way possible which means follow the guidelines we have been told by experts. Wear a mask, social distance, wash your hands, and even wear gloves!

Thank you for visiting my site today. I hope you have a great and safe day! Remember, I do not constantly remind y’all about being safe because I want to be a nag, I save the nagging for my husband, I am telling y’all this because I do not want anything awful to happen to you. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

~Motivational Monday~

~A New Week, Gives Us A Fresh Start~

Happy Monday y’all! Did y’all have a nice, safe, and relaxing weekend? Weekends are a great day to recuperate from our long work week. This was the first weekend in a while that I didn’t work overtime, and it was great! Don’t get me wrong, I love the overtime pay, but I was also a little worn out from the long hours I have been working. I have learned that working seven days a week is not the best plan, especially when dealing with a chronic illness. We all need to learn to put our health above things like work!

Now that we are beginning a new week and leaving the restful weekend behind, I think we all need a little motivation to get us started! Weeks are long, and weekends are short which can be exhausting, and a little frustrating. During these difficult and challenging times of COVID, it is important to find at least one positive thing each day. This isn’t always easy, but we must believe there is something great in everyday of our life! This is my goal for the week in front of us and hope you will do that same!

The holidays are coming up on us so fast and I don’t know about you, but I am not ready for them. I guess this is partially due to my intense fears of COVID and the fact that I do not have an immune system, but they are coming whether we are ready or not. I am planning to do a post soon about the safest way to be able to celebrate the holidays and not put ourselves in any harm. There must be a way, right? Of course, there is, but these ways might not keep everyone in our family happy. I do think Christmas and New Year’s will be a lot different than all previous years, but that is where we are all at right now in life and we need to make the most of it.

Thank you for visiting my site today! I always appreciate the time you take to read what I have shared and love reading your comments, which I promise to respond to as quickly as I can. I am also planning to do my typical posts all week and not allow work to intrude on what brings me happiness! Please just remember to stay as safe as you possibly can this week! I hope y’all never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Pandemic Crisis

~The Never Ending Crisis~

I know I have talked about COVID-19 numerous times since the pandemic started, but sadly things are only getting worse every day. The state that I live in surely isn’t the only one, but it has had a HUGE surge in new COVID-19 cases and deaths. I know it isn’t a good thing to live in fear because life is too short to live that way, but I am terrified of this virus and I think for good reason.

Currently, I basically do not even have an immune system and that is due to the medication I take for Multiple Sclerosis. So, I am dealing with a medication that is supposed to be slowing the progression of the MS but also weakens my immune system to a dangerous level with this virus being as uncontrollable as it is. Let me put it like this, from Monday to Friday in a city with about 68, 560 people living in it, there were 1,187 new cases. That is only the reported cases and who knows how many others are a systematic and have no idea they are sick and spreading a deadly virus.

If you pay attention to the news, you will see that thousands of people are dying daily from this virus. I am not able to watch the news without crying and maybe it’s because I am overly sensitive, but I can’t understand how this wouldn’t tug on everyone’s heartstrings. Some of these innocent people that have died with COVID never leave their homes and others were extra careful, and still ended up with the virus that took their life. How sad is it when someone loses someone they love and can’t even have a normal funeral because of a deadly virus? For me this is heart wrenching and unimaginable.

Of course, I do not for even a second believe we were informed in a proper time frame or manner. If only we received the warnings when those in charge knew there was a deadly virus spreading, maybe we would be in a safer and better place today, and maybe those that lost their life would still be with the ones they love. I do not see how it is possible for a President, Prime Minister, Chancellor, or whatever the name of the leader is would not be made aware of something like a deadly virus and not act accordingly for the safety of the citizens, but this did happen this year because our President cared more about reelection and lost anyway.

This year’s holidays are very challenging and unique. Thanksgiving has come and gone, and I feared going anywhere because of COVID. Christmas is only a few weeks away and I honestly do not feel safe leaving my house. There are so many what-ifs and no clear answers. My husband and I always went to my mother and stepfather’s house for Christmas Eve, but that isn’t happening this year for a few reasons and of course, COVID is one of those reasons. We would then go to my in-law’s house on Christmas day and I am not sure that is happening this year, only because of COVID.

Then there is New Year’s Eve. It is definitely a time to celebrate 2020 ending and 2021 starting, but what do you do on New Year’s Eve? That is right, people hug and or kiss. How can you even celebrate the New Year when you have to (or at least should) social distance? I can tell you that my husband and I will do what we have done for the past few years, which is to stay home just the two of us with our two sweet fur babies. Even before COVID, staying home was a safer way to bring in the New Year, or at least I feel like I am too older to celebrate at a bar with way too many people too close together. I have not ever enjoyed crowds because it makes me uncomfortable and nervous.

This is the first time I started writing without overthinking it. I knew what I wanted to write about, but I didn’t know the way it would come together. I typically write my posts out by hand because I feel more connected to what I am writing when it is written by hand. I am trying to change the way I think because I don’t think it make sense to write it out and then type it because it is kind of like doing double the work. Y’all have probably heard this saying before, “Work smarter not harder!” I am going to start doing this.

Thank you so much for visiting my site today. I hope your weekend has started off great and you are safely enjoying your time away from work. I think this is the first weekend in a while that I am not working overtime and it is rather nice. I might have been getting a little burnt out, which does not help the pain I deal with daily. I do look forward to reading your comments and I promise to respond as quickly as I can. Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

~Pick Me Up Thursday~

~Thankfulness Week: Day 4~

Happy Friday Eve and Thanksgiving y’all! I hope your week has gone well and you are ready for the weekend! Holidays this year are much different than what we are used to, but unfortunately, this is where most of us are now. COVID-19 has caused so much heartache and stress for so many of us. Now is a time we all need to be a little more understanding, patient, supportive, and thankful for our lives and our loved ones. The struggles we might be facing right now in our lives, we need to remember that someone else could be going through something much worse than we are.

In the beginning of this week, I told you I would share with y’all two things I am thankful for each day and why, so will continue doing this today! On Thanksgiving, I think about the families out there that are in shambles because they lost someone they love to COVID-19 and I am truly thankful that everyone I know, and love is safe from this evil virus. We hear the stories told on the news from the front-line workers that are in the hospitals taking care of COVID-19 patients and the families that have gone through tragic loses. Each story breaks my heart a little more and I wish there was something I could do for these heartbroken people. All I know to do is anytime I leave my house to wear a mask, gloves, and social distance, and continue hoping others will do the same.

Another thing I am thankful for is the love and support I feel each day from my family. I was raised by a young and single mother, who didn’t have a good role model she could follow the example of to be a mother, but she did the best she could. She raised me to be kind, loving, understanding, tolerant, and compassionate. She and I do not agree on everything and know the topics we have different opinions on which are often avoidable. Overall, leaving hot topics out of the equation, I am thankful for the person she raised me to be. Between the guidance and love from my mother and grandfather, I am a strong, kind, loving, understanding, some-what tolerant person, and I never judge others on anything but the way they treat others.

Whatever you are doing today for Thanksgiving, I hope you are staying safe and enjoying the day. As crazy as this is going to sound, I will be home like always and working for a few hours. I think I might be a little too dedicated to my job or I am a bit of a work alcoholic, but I guess that is easy to do when you work from home. No matter if I am actually working or not, I am home where my home office is and tend to feel like I am always at work, I guess that is because I am.

Thank you for visiting my site today. I hope you and your family have a nice, relaxing, and safe day! As always, I look forward to reading your comments and will respond as quickly as I can. Please never forget that I am ALWAYS sending you LOVE, compassion, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Thankfulness Week

~Day One For Thankfulness Week~

Happy Monday y’all! I hope you had a nice, relaxing, and safe weekend! I am going to do things a little different this week in honor of Thanksgiving. I do strongly believe we should all acknowledge what we are thankful for every day and not just the week of Thanksgiving, which I am sure we already do, but I am going to share with y’all each day of this week two things I am thankful for and hope you will join me in doing this. What my plan is to share two things I am thankful for and why, but would like to know what you are thankful for as well!

I am very thankful for the loving family that I have. Each member of my family is special in their own way and I love them for it! My family is supportive of what I do and how I live my life, which is a great feeling. Everyone knows and understands that I basically have NO immune system, so they understand the reasons why I am as terrified as I am about COVID. Lord knows, my husband is extremely protective of me and does everything he can to keep me safe!

I am also thankful for my job that allows for me to work from the safety of my home! The online training was challenging, but over the past few months I have learned so much and have become pretty darn good at this job. With the uncertainty of COVID in the entire country, I know I would not be able to earn a decent living and be safe if it were not for this job.

Now like I said, I would love to be able to read what you are thankful for! I am not pressuring you to participate, but will encourage you to play along with me this week! I think it would be interesting to read the different things you are thankful for and see what we might have in common!

Thank you for visiting my site today! I hope your week begins great and continues to get better throughout the week! It will be a short week, but the short weeks always feel so much longer! Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and MANY positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Motivational Monday

I hope y’all are having a great long weekend and that you are feeling great and staying safe! Do you have anything planned for today? I do hope no matter what you are planning to do, you will stay safe and listen to what expects are telling us. Unfortunately, even though many of us are off today for Labor Day, but COVID-19 does not take days off. In fact, I know many people are completely forgetting about this virus and doing what they would normally do to celebrate a holiday.

On Friday, my thoughts for the weekend were finish a few posts that I had started, organize a few things, and clean, which may sound pretty boring but sounded great to me. Unfortunately, something I never planned for invaded my long weekend and I ended up dealing with yet again another nasty headache. Things are a lot better today, but I still have a manageable headache and will do the best I can to finish those two posts that I had started. I swear there is never any planning or expecting a terrible headache, but it is something I should never dismiss because they happen.

I might be a little behind because of my horrible and evil headache/migraine, but I do want to share a great quote to help motivate us all at the beginning of this short week. I do hope you will find meaning within this quote and it will motivate you to keep pushing forward no matter what happens. Life is difficult and living with an incurable chronic illness does not help, but we are all powerful and can handle just about anything. I do look forward to reading your thoughts on this quote.

I do not want to make any promises that I might not be able to keep, but I do want to finish a few posts I have started. One of these will not be pushed until Wednesday because it is all about what the date means to me. I hope the rest of your day goes well and you stay safe! Please never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, support, and many positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa

Pick Me Up Thursday

Happy Friday Eve!

How has your week been? With Friday just around the corner and it being a long weekend, do you have any plans? I think many places have cancelled the fireworks for the Forth of July this year because of the virus, which is a really for the best. I am sure there are still some places that aren’t taking the virus as serious as they should and there will be many people out wanting to do something fun, but I am perfectly happy staying home with my husband and two loving cats. I plan to prepare myself for my new job that I start Monday!

Now that we have almost made it through the week and need just a little encouragement and a pick me up to get through another day! I hope you will find the quote I am sharing will offer you the Pick Me Up needed! Personally, I found the quote inspiring and uplifting, but would love to know what you think!

I hope the last part of your week goes well and you are feeling well. Please whatever you have planned for the weekend, stay as safe as you possibly can. I know all wearing a mask everywhere you go and not being able to do the normal things you would do over a long weekend isn’t great, but it is the state we are all in at the moment. I hope someday soon the virus will be under control, but until that day we have to practice all the safety protocols necessary!

Thank you for visiting my site today. I hope you never forget that I am always sending y’all LOTS of love, comfort, and many positive vibes!

Always, Alyssa