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Archive for New Year’s Resolution–2008

Good Food Receipes for our Hearts! Taken from “46 Healthy SOUL FOOD RECIPES” BY The Stroke Association .org

I was at a job related function the other day,  and two very nice ladies came out to give a talk about health  and black Americans.  The asked us all to be ambassadors for health with them and pass out this information about Black American’s and their heart health.  So here goes……

The Booklet called 46 Healthy SoulFood Recipes was edited by Sandra K. Nissenberg,   the CEO  is Louis Weber,  President of the Magazine Division is Jerry l.Croft,  and the Editor -in – Chief is James M. O’Connor.  

ACCORDING TO AMERICAN HEART/AMERICAN STROKE ASSOCIATION —LEARN AND FACTS AND LIVE!

STROKE TARGETS BY COLOR!!!!

ACCORDING TO AMERICAN HEART ASSOCIATION/AMERICAN STROKE:

KNOW WHERE YOU STAND.  THE ODDS ARE AFRICAN AMERICANS ARE TWICE AS LIKELY TO SUFFER A STROKE AS WHITE AMERICANS.

BEATING THE ODDS ISN’T ABOUT WINNING.  IT’S ABOUT LIVING!!!

YOU HAVE THE POWER TO END STROKE. CALL:  1-888-4-STROKE/

STROKEASSOCIATION.ORG

(((THESE AND MOST OF THE FACTS IN THIS BLOG ARE TAKEN DIRECTLY FROM THE  BOOKLET ON HEALTHY EATING OF SOUL FOOD.  I (RIVEROFLIFELISAJOY) HAD PROMISED TO  GET THIS INFORMATION OUT TO EVERYBODY.  –EVEN AT CHURCH OR MY SON’S TENNIS ACADEMY!  SO I MUST ALSO SHARE WITH YOU MY FELLOW BLOGERS AND READERS OF POSTS.  I HAVE HIGHBLOOD PRESSURE, AND I HAVE TO MONITOR MY BLOOD PRESSURE JUST AS MANY OF US DO.  SO PLEASE TAKE ME SERIOUSLY AND PLEASE ENJOY THE RECEIPES I WILL BE POSTING UNDER THE SAME HEADING THE ONLY DIFFERENCE WILL BE THAT I GIVE A DATE AND STATE THAT IS IS RECEIPE  NUMBER ONE ETC.)))

 The book on healthy soul food has bright happy pictures and color appetizing food.  I will be cooking a meal from this booklet.  “Soul Food”  has everything from  soups, salads,  seafood, meats, poultry, vegetarian entrees, vegetables and sides,  breads, breakfasts, and of course my favorite….desserts!

I will give you a sample of the food after this quick discussion taken from the Soul Food Receipe book:

FOLLOW THE THREE “R”s TO HELP PROTECT YOURSELF AGAINST STROKE.

  • REDUCE your chances of having a stroke by learning the risk factors and working with your doctor.
  • RECOGNIZE THE WARNING SIGNS OF STROKE.  STROKE IS A MEDICAL EMERGENCY—EVERY SECOND COUNTS!
  • RESPOND BY CALLING 911 IMMEDIATELY IF YOU OR SOMEONE NEARBY IS EXPERIENCING THE WARNING SIGNS OF STROKE. THEN CHECK THE TIME THAT THE FIRST SYMPTOMS STARTED.  YOU’LL NEED THIS INFORMATION LATER.

FOLLOW THESE TIPS ACCORDING TO THE SOULFOOD BOOKLET:

“How to use these receipes:

To help you with meal planning, each recipe includes a nutrition analysis.  The following guidelines give some details about how the analyses are claculated.  Use the analyses to help determine how well a certain dish will fit into your overall eating plan.

Eat a variety of nutritious foods from all food groups.

Eat a diet rich in vegetables and fruits.

Choose whole-grain, high-fiber foods.

Eat fish, preferably oily fish, at least twice a week.

Limit foods that are high in calories but low in nutrients,

Limit how much saturated fat, trans fat, and cholestrol you eat.

Cut back on beverages and foods with added sugars.

Choose and prepare foods with little or not salt.

If you drinkalcohol, drink in moderation.

Read nutrition facts labels and ingredients list when you shop.

((According to the booklet on HEALTHY SOULFOOD RECEIPES  —–

FOR more information on the updated American Heart Association Dietary and Lifestyle Recommendations, visit americanheart.org.

oKAY….LETS GET TO ATLEAST one RECEIPE TODAY….SHALL WE?

RECIPE #1~~~BLACK-EYED PEA SOUP

1 14.5-ounce can fat-free, low-sodium chicken broth

2  smoked ham hocks (about 1 pound)

16 ounces frozen black-eyed peas

1 14.5-ounce can no-salt-added diced tomatoes

1/4  teaspoon dried thyme, crumbled

1/8  teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

1/4  teaspoon salt

In a large sauce pan, bring the broth to a boil over high heat.  Stir in the remaining ingredients except the salt.  Return to a boil.  Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 30 minutes, or until the peas are very tender. Remove from the heat.

Stir in the salt.  Let stand for 10 minutes so the flavors blend; the standing time is very important in this receipe. Discard the ham hocks before lading the soup into soup bowls.

Per serving:  calories 183, Total Fat 1.0 g. Saturated Fat0.0 g. Polyunsaturated Fat 0.5 g. Monounsaturated Fat 0.0g g. Cholesterol 0 mg. Sodium 218 mg. Cabohydrates 34 g. Dietary Fiber 7 g. Sugars 3 g. Protein 12 g.

Dietary Exchanges:  2 starch, 1 vegetable, 1 very lean meat

This is one of many installments of receipes from the “46 Healthy Soul Food Receipes”  Booklet from the American Heart Association /American Stroke Association.

Try this receipe and let me know how you liked it!  Or better yet, if you have ideas of your own for healthy SOULFOOD cooking…blog it and share it so we can all live heart healthy!

Till next blog,

riveoflifelisajoy!

 

 

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SOMEBODY PLEASE TAKE THE TEMPERATURE OF AMERICA! It looks like the United States has caught OBAMA FEVER!!! HE IS A WINNER!!!!

big-summer-sky-at-dusk.jpgLook,  I am not a politics buff….but one thing I do know…..I heard 1010Wins  RADIO ROAD TO THE WHITE HOUSE,  state  that Hillary  Clinton is considering conceding defeat?!!!!

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 Whaaaaaattt?????!!!!  Impossible says I!  NOt to be believed says I!  Hillary Clinton could not possibly give in so easily? 

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 I was at a job related function yesterday and I heard  a several teachers, and a principal of a school discussing the issue.

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  Some were thinking over the experience issues between Hillary and Obama.  It was interesting to hear.  One person who was black did not seem so impressed with Obama’s experience. 

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 While another person who was also black,  was apparently happy about Obama’s  too close to the White House success in the primaries nationally! 

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 They then compared how Jessie Jackson had made a bid for the White House.  However, they then  considered that Jessie Jackson did not appeal to middle America in his stance on issues or his way of speech or both. 

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 They thought about it and bantered the topic,  but is was obvious who had Obama political fever and who did not. 

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 I sat there for a minute, since I was not directly in the conversation, and I did start to get a little bit in awe of the history taking place before our eyes, and ears! 

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My father was a World War II Veteran….my father cared for his wife and children.  My father brought a house in SpringfieldGardens that had a acre lot and a large bongalo house. 

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My dreams have been realized through the fact that my father dared to dream and dared to step out from his comfort zone!  So  dreamers can be success stories!  Ya know?

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 Mr. Obama,  I will definitely keep you, and Hillary Clinton in my prayers.  This is a momentous moment in time….savor it,  inhale it,  taste it! 

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 It tastes like a green meadow at sunrise, wet with the dew of promise after a  midnight of malstrom storms and thunderous clamor. 

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 Let that clamor and noise be the change of the century!

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  Let Obama and Hillary bring fourth a New Begining for the future of mankind and the world!

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Till next Hillary and Obama blog—

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—-RIVEROFLIFELISAJOY! 

BEING THANKFUL FOR THE BAD TIMES

LIFE STARTS HERE.jpgI sometimes grow tired

I wonder when will the hard times end.

I gather myself, and look around

I find the strength within

A face, a glance a smile and there

I get myself back on the road again.

Why do I complain when I look up into

the sky down comes the rain

The rain that feeds the crops for food,

and gives water for drink and

prevents forest fires

Shall I complain when I have a job

just because someone there does not

like me?

Should I complain because someone in

the family is sick

atleast I have a doctor and health insurance

So as well meaning friends and family have

repeated to me so many times

Learn to be thankful for the bad times

For those times might be better than times to come

Issues in the future from which you would like to

gather yourself and run

Don’t look down at the road and mumble that it is

bumpy—atleast the road is there

Do not despair for life is for those who grasp it

and hold tight…

never to give up the fight.

If I had a dream for a castle and and prince

that never came to save me –no worry

for I must go forth unsaved by the knight in

shining armor….I will reach for and save myself

gather myself, and go forward and handle the future come what

may….

And be very, very thankful for the bad times….even for today.

prose and thoughts by

RIVEROFLIFELISAJOY–TILL NEXT BLOG—

HAPPY NEW YEAR! 

My Weight Problem and How it will Affect the Year 2008 Resolution!!

LIFE STARTS HERE.jpgLet me start this off right!  I am about 265 pounds.  I go up and I go down.  I stay within the range of 250 to 265 at all times.  Right now my stomach is my worse attribute.  I gave birth over 14 years ago—ONE Time!  I had only one pregnancy in my entire life.  (I laugh at that because my huge gut….people always say…”You have a couple of kids…Right?”  I always tell them no!  But would you believe that there is always someone who will persist and continue to tell me that I have more than one child?  I look at them like he/or she is crazy!  I mean, really,  could I have been knocked out at some point,  and given birth and do not remember it?  And where is the child with the social security number to go along with it?  —Any way lets get back to my weight problem)   I was a “full figured” nine year old when I developed my  “period”. 

 I was an active semi-tom boy as a young lady.  I loved sports….I was not the best,  but I participated as much as possible.

  I was on a softball team while in junior high school.  I did gymnastics—which I loved to a certain extent. 

 I could not do the uneven bars because of an inner ear problem.  I could not swing myself up onto the bars without losing my perspective and balance. 

 I would swing throw my legs up and then I would subsequentcially fall because I would have the horrifying giddy sensation in the pit of my stomach and my head  would feel light, and my brain would release such powerful shots of “seemingly electrical volts down my spine.” 

I would loosen my grip on the uneven bar and find myself recuperating on the floor mat.  

  That would happen to me atleast 5 times out of 10 tries on the uneven bars in gymnastics class.  I stuck more to the balance beam, and the floor routines. 

I had the same problem of inner ear confusion but I would be able to prolong that reaction by doing other parts to the gymnastic routine by skipping etc.  Once I did a walkover (head over heel and vice versa) and I fell and banged the side bone of my left big toe.  I had to go to the doctor. 

Nothing was broken —but again that came from that “stupid”–weakness in my inner ear that affects balance.  I also loved Karate!  I had fallen in love with Bruce Lee and the Martial Arts movies he made.  So my parents enrolled me into the Jerome Mackey School of Martial Arts!  I took judo until I received another injury from  my inner ear issue.  My sparing partner had tossed me over her head in a move that I was not familiar with. 

 I lost my balance and slid across the canvas mat and busted my lower lip.  My head throbbed for days and I felt dizzy.  I stopped judo.  I took up karate and I liked it better than judo. 

 Only exception was I did not like to spar!  I am such a baby!  I rode my bike, and played with the neighborhood kids.  I had a pretty good weight. 

 Remember,  I am 47 years old and I am not of the video game generation.  I played with my Barbie dolls and entertained myself by watching the BRADY BUNCH,  I LOVE LUCY, HERE’S LUCY, LOST IN SPACE,  THE BEGINNING EPISODES OF STAR TREK, MISSION IMPOSSIBLE, FLINTSTONES,  HONEY MOONERS etc. 

So basically I was an active kid when my favorite television programs were not on.

So how did I go from a size 13/14 to a WHOPPING  size 22/24? 

 Where did everything go wrong?  I grew up with a 1/2 acre of back yard,  I played hard with my cats and dogs, and ran up and down the peaceful neighborhood street with my neighborhood friends. 

We played games on the stoop,  and played hopscotch,  hide-and- go-seek etc.  I was not fat at all.  As I got older,  men and young boys would ogle over my tiny waist and full hips and body.  So why do I look like a  big ole’ sack o’ potatoes right now? 

Genetic Predisposition Maybe?  But my mother never looked as bad as I do right now!  I know, I know….don’t put myself down right?  Well, it just gets me a bit frustrated and hurts my feelings abit. 

 I want to where cute outfits and bright cheery colors.  Yes, I am aware of the Avenue,  Ashley Steward,  Lane Bryant Stores and Plus size areas in Macy’s etc.,  But it does not matter.  Big is still big.  They  do not  match the designs that I could see myself wearing! 

 For example,  look at Victoria Secret Stores.  I cannot buy anything in that store unless it is perfume.

  They do not make bras for sale at the UGLY over grown size of 42DD! 

 They make things in the 38CC  or D category….but my size seems over the top for them! 

 That is why I only venture in and make a BEE LINE for the lotions and perfumes only.

  I make my purchase and then walk hastily out of the store….so that the skinny ladies who can fit into those great designer bras and panties don’t give me that “ARE YOU KIDDING–ONCE OVER WITH THEIR JUDGEMENTAL EYES”! 

So getting back to my weight.  I am tired of being sick and tired.  I do not care what Monique from the “PARKERS” AND PHAT Girls (famed plus sized commedian)says about being plus sized!  

  FAT,  OR PHAT IS NOT CUTE! —What I am referring to is myself.  I have met and still do know personally some very phsically beautiful people who happend to be plus sized. 

I just want people to realize that I am aware that plus size body does not make a plus size heart.

  So when you feel stressed at work….does your heart beat in that “fight or flight mode because you may not agree with your co-worker over a given topic. 

 So for  the entertainment reason…yes plus size is good….but for those of us who run a household it is not easy to pick up babies,  and cook and clean daily….it becomes a hardship when weight turns simple tasks difficult.

 My jellyroll of a stomach,  and thick stubby legs that make me trip over side walk cracks–is not appealing.  —Honestly,  I fit my clothes better when I was size 13/14!  I had a flat….a real flat stomach back then.  I could do sit ups and push ups and even stretch. 

 I did  Yoga every night back then.  So what has happened you ask?  Well when I met my husband at age 27 I was still in good shape.  Great shape from what he had told me back then.  We met at Queens College while we both attended. 

He was assisting the teacher in swimming class.  I was a student.  I was very shy, I kept my towel rapped around my  waist until it was time to get into the water of the olympic sized pool. 

 I was so embarressed naturally.  Ugh….my husband told me that my body was great….that he would wait for me to take my towel off.  Well any way the rest is history.  We got married,  and issues arose, ensued and he became castastrophically sick and all I have to show of my love for him is my beautiful ONE child who is currently 14 years old. 

I have heard and have read that STRESS can make you fat!  Have you heard that one yet?!  Well, after what I went through in loosing my husband….I should weigh in at about 700 pounds I figure! 

 But really I do not eat as much as what people think about fat people.  I actually have stomach pain most of the time. 

I do not eat breakfast, because I get this bad reaction where I have pain with the first food that hits my stomach….then in a 1/2 hour I feel extremely sleepy….my arms feel heavy and I have to keep putting water on my face, and sometimes I have to even just go sit in a restroom stall at work to keep from passing out!  So I do not eat breakfast…it creates a problem. 

 I checked with my doctors who have no explanation for this syndrome.  So I continue not to eat breakfast.  I see everybody else around me —you know the healthy weight people eating breakfast, sharing food and having a good time about it. 

I eat lunch between 11:00 and 1:30.  I then have dinner at home.  I do not buy junk food.  I do my cooking…but I do not fry anything excep hamburger and some fish.

  I make broiled salmon, and some other fish broiled.  I tend to eat late at night…which is a BIG NO, NO!  I am usually working over time. 

Sometimes, I work 12 to 14 hours a day! When I get home I am too tired to cook.  I get up very early *4 AM and I may leave work at 1pm. 

 I am so tired that I cook and go to bed immediately.  So yes I know what you are thinking….I must get a better schedule right?

However, I need my job.  My kid has medical problems and I cannot quit my job–it has decent health coverage.  

With all my issues to the side for a minute ….I have contemplated the surgery.  I am afraid of that type of hard action.  Although I might sound like a good candidate. 

 I do have high blood pressure….which may not be a good reaction to stomach stapling or placing the “ring” on my stomach either.  I believer I will go out and purchase the sweat pants and shirt and just start walking again. 

I MUST START WALKING TO BEGIN TO LOOSE WEIGHT! 

 I will use that as a option because I started to loose weight over the summer when I was walking ten blocks to catch the bus to work when my car was in the shop for an entire month. 

After I got over the actual 2 weeks of pain in my calves etc.  I began to notice a difference.  Not a big difference….but a difference nonetheless! 

So that is my NEW YEARS RESOLUTION!!!!!******I RIVEROFLIFELISAJOY—WILL COMMITT AS MUCH THOUGHT AND TIME TO ((((((WALKING)))))))  AS I DO TO THIS BLOG.  I will attempt to walk atleast 1 hour everyday….or better yet I will start walking 15 minutes, for a week, and then increase it the next week.  I have to start slow….I have a heart to consider today.

 So what about you?  Are you going to take and make a difference in your own life for the  coming year?  Do you need to loose weight like …or  do you need to accomplish some other goal?  “ROME WAS NOT BUILT IN A DAY!”  (UNKNOWN AUTHOR)

 Sit  down and truly think about your goals for the year 2008!  Plan it , structure it, and tell your family and friends so that they will help you get your act to gether. 

I have told my 14 year old to help Mommy to loose weight.  I asked him to walk with me for the first week of my walk and lose weight campaign!

As you can see, by this blog you who need to loose some weight—start slow….You did not gain weight over night….and you will not lose weight over night….atleast healthy weight loss  saves lives!

Take your time,  TALK TO YOUR DOCTOR AND TELL HIM YOUR GOALS FOR YOURSELF FOR 2008!!! Take it slow  and follow doctors orders.  Becareful with the weight loss surgery. 

Till next blog…in which  I will talk about two people I know who had the two mentioned  medical techniques I described earlier.

Riveroflifelisajoy!

My New Year’s Resolution–It’s Gonna Be Great In 2008!!!

LIFE STARTS HERE.jpgNo matter what…I will resolve

to improve my status in life!

I  want to go in the direction of

Peace with my fellow man

I want to develop a clear and

concise plan

I will  move in the direction of harmony with

all.  But will not give up my self-respect

Because if I do,  I have wasted this long,  long up hill

trek.

Will you take my hand,

My fellow man?

Can we together rise,

up toward the heavenly skies to

bring down the fighting across the

globe?

Can we bring down the pain and suffering

in the lives of men,  women, and children?

Can we find ways to stay the course, and

not have to live out our lives full of

remorse?  From good deeds left undone,

from victories left not won?

Can you search deep within,  and see the one true love

of mankind that will give us the answer

and the goal that is about to unfold in the

coming year?

Does every year new have to begin with

Tears?

Can we shout in victory together, all man kind

of  every race, creed and religion? 

All of mankind of all lifestyles, and traditions

Can we this year….of 2008  be ready,  be real,

and prepared to be GREAT?

What say you, my fellowman kind and womankind–Are we up for the challenge to participate in the year 2008!

Come forward, and do not fear,  the end of the 2007 is drawing to an end. 

I hope you will take the challenge and  assist this beautiful world on which we reside to come to a mend and heal from deep inside.

You do not have to believe in the same God as I do. 

Just place your foot, within your shoe and take just

one step forward.

Take another step forward toward your destiny.

There is a purpose for all of us on this globe called earth!

Do not be afraid to see your value,  see your worth!

I will pray for you.  I will pray for myself…

I will pray that the Almighty God above reveal his love to one and all!  That you,  your friends, and family  and I will

receive joy, peace and prosperity in the coming year 2008!

Just do not forget to open the gate for the poor,  the down trodden,  the sick,  and the weak.—

For those who have received much….much is required back to assist those who are yet on the road as pilgrims seeking salvation and peace.

May the God of all—The Alpha and Omega

the Beginning and the End —give you all that you need to succeed in 2008! 

I resolve to be a help and not a hinderance on that road  toward our goals of man-kinds success!

Till next blog

RIVEROFLIFELISAJOY! 

We are Cold and We are Hungry!!!

HUNGER AND DOUBT.jpgI am Cold and I am Hungry!!!!  I can’t take it any more!!!  Last week after I paid my rent of $1600.00 my child said what are we going to eat?  

 I looked around the house and he did too….Ole  Mama in da Hood’s Cupboard was bare chile!!!  What to do?  What to do?  —Suddenly it hit me. 

 The “free food” places my mother used to frequent before she had her stroke.  I used to get angry at her for getting the canned food,  and bags of rice, and spagetti (uncooked) and also bags of dry beans.  I thought and even told her—You do not need that stuff —you have a good job at the Post Office.  

 I am not the best cook so I had No idea of what to do with a bag of dried beans.  You see, my husband  had been a Corrections Officer before his castastrophic illness that took him away from my son and I.  So when my husband had been with us,  we would shop for food and spend atleast $300.00 per food shopping session. 

 But now—for nine years…it is catch as catch can—Meaning do the best you can, pray for the Lord to increase a $50.00 food purchase to equal a $300.00 and stretch it as far as two weeks or more!   As my earlier blog on hunger discussed…”I am not eligible because the Welfare deparment only helps people who have more than one child and make less than $38,00.00 per year.  They do not care about your debt to income ratio. 

 They do not care about your net income—they do not care that you pay $1600.00 per month for a three bedroom for your mother, yourself, and your child.  They do not care about the life insurance policy that you have to maintain since your husband has left nothin for his son, and there is no child suuport.  —So what do you do when you have barely any heat in the house becuase you cannot afford to pay the heating bill and cannot afford to pay the food bill after it is all said and done?!

Mother’s are always right!!!  Get to the Free Food places—it is in your community—ask around at the churches….Don’t despair—I just had forgotten during the summer so we really suffered until a loan from my nearly empty pension  came in.  We did not got to any amusement parks, or any type of recreation.  All I did was create paintings to keep myself positive. 

 I would tell my son” Ca mon’ John lets do some art work!!!  Maybe it will make us rich one day!!!  My son is 14 and does not believe in Santa Claus any more—so he just patted me on my head and said yes Mommy,  I love you—I will just draw one picture—but I do not like to paint!   My mother said,  I don’t want to paint I don’t feel like doing that, if you do not mind. ”

I love my family—they have suffered and cried with me for the loss of my husband and  suffered with each other when we take ill,  and during the summer during my vacation we suffered together without food—until it hit me that I could go back to the free food places—no matter how humiliating it can  be. 

 But guess what—-when you have food like the beans I have come to learn how to cook…on the table with some white rice—IT IS BETTER THAN NOTHING ON THE STOVE OR PLATE AT ALL!!!  —So get up off of that computer and check your local churches for the Food Pantry—those who are hungry—God Bless and let me know if you get good results!—Meanwhile we still need an answer about the heat crisis in America!!! 

I think we should all blog, or write or call our local and Washington elected officals about the Oil and Gas Heat crisis!   What type of Christmas and Chanuka is this for our kids?  Hunger and Cold?  The rules of Heap are too strick,  and the prices are too high.  How do you expect me to even afford to purchas holiday gifts from the retailers—-I AM GOING BACK TO THE FLEA MARKET—GOOD BYE MARSHALLS,  GOOD BYE MACY’S,  GOOD BYE WALMART,  AND GOOD BYE COSTCOS!!!  How can I buy jewelry,  coats,  jackets,  shoes,  boots,  cameras,  etc., etc., when I cannot even put food on the table. 

If something is not done not there will empty stores and empty stores means the down fall of the Gross National Product and the loss of business as we know it in America.  I AM MS.  JOHN Q PUBLIC—-I CAN NOT SHOP RETAIL ANY MORE—I DO NOT OWN A CREDIT CARD EITHER—-

Give me some ideas on how to save our economy please—or better yet how to feed,  clothe and put heat on in my abode for my family.

Thanks!  riveroflifelisajoy