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SoCS: Making a Difference Being Different

Here’s our prompt: Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “difference.” Whatever the word “difference” conjures first in your mind, write about it. Enjoy!

Even though we’re not supposed to plan, I was tossing some ideas around after reading the prompt. I have a category called, “Making a Difference.” I don’t remember where I was going with that, but when I started to type a working title for this prompt, I thought about Temple Grandin and the article I read from my Good Morning America news email.

Temple Grandin has a PhD, so I should’ve typed Dr. in front of her name. She also has autism and has made a huge difference in our awareness and understanding of autism as well as in the lives of animals on farms. I hope you’ll read more about her fascinating life. Maybe I’ll post a video later.

In reading about Temple Grandin and autism, I wondered if the spectrum is much broader than we realize. Maybe it starts with social anxiety and awkwardness or slowness on one end, in which case I have traits. In school, I was almost always the last one done on tests. I’ve always been a slow reader. And an introvert who can force myself to be social, but then I need time alone. I have learned to think carefully before I speak and have a lot of pauses. Otherwise, I might say something inappropriate. which sometimes I do. But I also process slowly. When someone is talking fast and presenting a lot of information, I get lost. I don’t like frenetic music or any store with bright fluorescent lights and lots of stimuli. It’s only been in the past ten years or so that I’ve learned to honor these preferences in myself.

It’s okay to be different and honor our differences. We can help each other that way with everyone using their particular strengths. I have patience. I can paint and draw. My imagination is beyond imagination which can sometimes be a good thing, but I have to be careful not to imagine the worst. Or if I catch myself imagining the worst, I can stop. STOP! and imagine the best, or something different. Thoughts can make a difference.

Making a difference doesn’t have to be grand. We don’t have to save the world like I imagined when I was 11 and escaped into fantasy. We can make small differences with a smile or a kind word. We can make a difference in our own lives or the life of one person or animal.

When I looked up Temple Grandin on YouTube, this is the first video I saw, “The World Needs All Kinds of Minds,” so this is what I’m going with.

So then I went and looked at clips of the movie about Temple Grandin’s life which I have not seen. I was moved by this clip where she says, “I hate parties!” and she wants to be with cattle, and her mother takes time to tell, and show, Temple how much she loves her… I really want to see this movie! But for now, I’ll watch a couple more clips.

For more streams of consciousness and the rules, visit our host, Linda Hill at:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS April 10, 2021 | (lindaghill.com)


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Good News Tuesday for April 6, 2021: Reparations, Hope for Blindness, Vaccines for UN Peacekeepers, Student Invention, and the Dog Who Loves Unicorns

Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

First US City to Pay Reparations to Black Residents

The city of Evanston, Illinois has pledged to distribute $10 million over 10 years as reparations to black residents or their descendants who “suffered discrimination in housing because of city ordinances, policies or practices” between 1919 and 1969. Each qualifying household will receive $25,000 for home repairs or down payments on property. Here are additional details from NBC News.

Blindness from a Rare Genetic Disorder was Reversed with One Injection

A single injection of RNA therapy, sepofarsen, showed significant improvements for a patient living with a rare form of genetic blindness since infancy. The improvements were evident after one month and “remained when tested over 15 months after the first and only injection.” Here’s more from the Good News Network.

India Donates Vaccines for UN Peacekeepers

India donated 200,000 COVID vaccines to be distributed to UN peacekeepers serving in various mission around the world. The Good News Network has details here.

High School Student Invents Color-Changing Sutures to Detect Infection

Seventeen-year-old Dasia Taylor has invented a way for sutures to change color to show infection. She tested a variety of different sutures using beet juice in her experiments. Dasia is a finalist in the Regeneron Science Talent Search, the oldest and most prestigious science and math competition for high school seniors in the US. You can read more about Dasia’s project in this article from Smithsonian Magazine. Her natural good spirit and intelligence shine in the following video where she talks about her project and a fun fact about herself.

Unicorn Stealing Dog Is Adopted

Did you hear about Sisu, the stray dog who kept stealing a toy unicorn from the Dollar General? The animal control officer bought him the unicorn before taking him to the shelter. Now Sisu has a furever home!

Got good news?

Please share your good news story or link to your GNT post in the comments!


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Good News Tuesday for March 30, 2021: Saving Birds, Bald Eagle Comeback, Better Roads, Recycling Waste, and Teen Saves Friend with new CPR Skills

Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

Village Gives Up Streetlights for 45 Days to Save Bird Family

In the village of Potthakud, in southern India, a robin built her nest in a main lighting switchboard for the 120 homes and 35 streetlights. The nest was discovered by bird lover Karuppu Raja who turns on the streetlights each evening, He convinced the village to observe a blackout for 45 nights until the baby birds were old enough to fly. “I explained that so many bird species have become extinct and we should not let Indian Robin go the same way,” said Raja. Here’s the story from the Good News Network.

Bald Eagle Comeback

US Bald eagle populations have quadrupled in the last decade. In 1963, bald eagles were on the brink of extinction with only 417 known nesting pairs in the lower 48 states. Now, due to focused conservation work and the banning of DDT pesticide in 1972, there are reportedly more than 71,4000 nesting pairs and “an estimated 316,700 individual bald eagles in the contiguous United States.” Here’s more from CBS News.

Roads Built with Plastic Waste Are As Good or Better than Asphalt

12 Countries have built roads containing plastic waste. Studies show these roads “…can last longer, are stronger and more durable in respect to loads and rutting, can tolerate wide temperature swings, and are more resistant to water damage, cracking, and potholes.” We still need to greatly reduce our use of plastic, but recycling and reusing will help keep some plastic waste out of the ocean. Here’s more from the Good News Network on paving with plastic.

Developing Jet Fuel from Food Waste

Researchers in the US have found a way of turning food waste into a paraffin that works in jet engines and could “cut greenhouse gas emissions by 165% compared to fossil energy.” While it is currently more economical to convert these wastes to diesel or methane, researchers report they have developed an alternative method to “turn food waste, animal manure and waste water into a competitive jet hydrocarbon.” Fore details, including the science behind this discovery, here’s an article from BBC News.

Teen Saves Her Friend’s Life One Day After Finishing CPR Course

One day after finishing CPR training, Florida teen Torri’ell Norwood was in a serious car accident with three friends. Two passengers were unhurt, but A’zarria had hit her head and was unconscious. Torri’ell pulled A’zarria from the car and used CPR to save her life. Read details from the Good News Network. You can meet Torri’ell in this short video:

Got Good News?

Please share your own good news story or a link to your GNT post in the comments!


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SoCS: Forest Gump, Bullies, and a Happy Animal Video

Today’s prompt from Linda Hill:

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “run.” Use it as a noun, a verb, use it any way you’d like. Enjoy!

“RUN Forest, RUN!” was the first thing I thought of. I’ve watch Forest Gump how many times? At least 20, but who’s counting? It’s on tonight, and I might watch it again. Okay, I don’t really watch the whole thing every time. I’m also on the computer, or doing laundry….. but I’ll pay attention to my favorite parts, like when Forest and Jenny meet in Washington and everybody cheers when Forest in his army uniform embraces the hippie chick in the cement pond. If you want to just watch the reunion embrace, go to 3 minutes into this video:

Forest Gump is a movie about many things and has great music. In the beginning, Jenny tells Forest to run from the bullies so he doesn’t get beat up. Later, she tells him to run to save his life when he’s about to go to Vietnam, where he does run but also becomes a hero saving his buddies who don’t all make it.

Sometimes it’s good to run or avoid bullies. I admit that avoiding conflict is my default fault. Though why not avoid unnecessary conflict? Still, there are times when we need to face conflict with courage. There are times when we need to stand up for ourselves or someone else whether it’s a helpless animal, a child, or someone being harassed.

I recently read an article my friend shared on FB about what a bystander can do when witnessing harassment. (I had to type that word three times before it came out right.) The following article contains options about what a bystander can do when someone else is being harassed. It has something called the five Ds. (As an aside, there are four Ds for quitting smoking or other addictions: Distract, Delay, Drink Water, Do something else. I know it’s not that simple.)

The five Ds of intervention if we are a bystander go something like this:

Direct Intervention (after assessing for safety)

Distract by engaging the targeted person supportively

Delegate by enlisting help from a third party

Delayed response (this could also be debriefing)

Document

Okay, that’s five Ds. As you might guess, I broke out of the stream of consciousness for a brief period to go the article, but only because this is important. I can imagine being supportive of the person who is targeted easier than I can directly addressing the harasser. But I hope if I’m ever in this situation, I can be courageous and safe at the same time.

Here’s the article: SPLC on Campus: A guide to bystander intervention | Southern Poverty Law Center (splcenter.org)

I guess Jenny’s “Run Forest, Run!” is somewhere between direct intervention and distraction.
Now I wish I’d shared the video of Forest and Jenny here, because I like to end on a happy note. Well, you can always go back and watch the end of the video again. 🙂

Or you can watch this video of happy animals playing, running, and Jumping:

~~~

For more streams of consciousness, rules and guidelines, run on over to Linda’s blog:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS March 27, 2021 | (lindaghill.com)


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One-Liner Wednesday: A Little Bit of Good

“Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.” — The Reverend Desmond Tutu

A smile, a kind word, a silent prayer, picking up a random piece of trash, and even our own self care, are all little bits of good that add up over time.

One-Liner Wednesday is brought to us by our good host, Lind G. Hill. For more information, visit:

One-Liner Wednesday – Gulp! | (lindaghill.com)


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Good News Tuesday for Feb. 2, 2021: Good News from 2020, Protecting China’s Yangtze River, Saving a Life, and Delivering Vaccines to Remote Alaska

Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

Good News from 2020

2020 wasn’t all bad. I found this list on The Good News Group’s Facebook Page:

Protection for China’s Yangtze River

With 96 separate provisions The Yangtze river of China will receive landmark protections to begin on March 1st.

“All proposed chemical projects within one kilometer of the river will be banned, and existing ones are barred from expanding. Other polluting industries will be forced to move, while sand mining on the banks of the Yangtze will be severely restricted.”

Here’s more about this great “mother river” from the Good News Network.

USPS Mail Carrier Helps Save Elderly Woman on her Route

On January 14, USPS mail carrier Shonda Lemon noticed her elderly customer Helen Iwanski had not picked up her mail in three days. Shonda called the police for a well-being check and Ms. Iwanski was found alive, but had fallen and been on the floor for several days. After a few days in the hospital, Ms. Iwanski is now recovering in a rehab facility. You can read more at CNN.

Team of Women Delivers Vaccines to Remote Alaskan Villages

With just a few hours of light each day, an all women team delivers COVID vaccines and other health care to remote villages in Alaska. This video showing some of their journeys.

Got Good News?

Please Share in the Comments!


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JusJoJan: Wishes and Dreams, MLK’s Words: “I have dream…”

Today’s prompt is the word, “Wish.”

What’s the difference between a wish and a dream?

Making a wish seems somewhat passive, whimsical maybe. Nothing wrong with wishing, though my mom used to say her father used to say, “Wish in one hand and spit in the other and see which one gets filled up faster.” (There are other versions.)

A dream seems more long term, deeper, something that calls to be nurtured and nourished.

Martin Luther King had a dream. He worked hard for his dream. He prayed. He envisioned it. He spoke about it. Below is part of his “I Have a Dream” speech:

…Let us not wallow in the valley of despair, I say to you today, my friends.

And so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.”

I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.

I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

I have a dream today!

I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of “interposition” and “nullification” — one day right there in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.

I have a dream today!

I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, and every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight; “and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed and all flesh shall see it together.”

You can read the entire speech here.

Or listen below:

For more on Just Jot January, visit out host, Lind Hill at:

#JusJoJan prompt the 18th – “Wish” | (lindaghill.com)


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Good News Tuesday for Jan. 12, 2021: Democracy Prevailed, Women in the Catholic Church, Rice ATM, A Returned Wallet, and Food from the Heart

Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

Democracy Prevailed

After domestic terrorists attacked the US Capitol building on Wednesday in an attempted coup, members of congress evacuated to safety. The coup failed. Lawmakers returned to their posts that same evening and finished their jobs. Working through the night, they certified the Electoral College votes confirming Joe Biden as the 46th US president. The announcement was made at 3:40 AM on Thursday. Later that day, Donald Trump stated for the first time that “there will be an orderly transition on January 20.” We don’t know what the future holds, but on the morning of Thursday January 7, democracy prevailed. This article from MSN provides details and historical perspectives.

Pope Francis Gives Women More Opportunity to Serve in the Catholic Church

 Pope Francis, “in another step towards greater equality for women in the Roman Catholic Church,” decreed on Monday that women will be allowed to serve as readers at liturgies, altar servers and distributors of communion. These things have been happening in some churches, but the decree formalizes and ensures the opportunity to be allowed even in conservative Catholic parishes.

Rice ATM

In India, Ramu Dosapati has spent close to $61,000 of his own money to create a ‘Rice ATM’, giving out rice and other necessities 24 hours a day, to those in need. Here’s more from the Good News Network.

Girl Donates Birthday Money to Homeless Man who Returned Grandma’s Wallet

Sean Curry, who has been homeless for five years, found a wallet in a dumpster behind a coffee shop. He found no cash, but there were credit, debit, and medical cards in the wallet. Sean arranged to have the wallet returned to the owner, Evelyn Topper. Evelyn’s grand daughter, Mikayla had planned her 12th birthday party to include a drop off for charity donations. She gave the several hundred dollars in birthday money, to Sean. For more details and a video from the Good News Network, click here.

Food from the Heart

The Sakina Grill has served rich and poor alike. When the pandemic threatened the business, the community rallied in support with over 65 donors contributing more than a quarter of a million dollars. You can learn more about the Sakina Grill and be inspired by owner/chef Kazi Mannan here.

Got good news?

Please share in the comments!


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Good News Tuesday for Oct. 27, 2020: Teen’s Research to Fight Covid 19, Conservation Progress, Drones in the Rainforest, and a Teacher Saves Grandma

Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

Middle School Student Wins 25,000 for Research to Help Fight Covid-19

Anika Chebrolu, a 14-year-old from Texas, won the 2020 3M Young Scientist Challenge, which has been described as “the nation’s premier middle school science competition.”  In her research, “….which included analyzing close to 700 million compounds,” Anika discovered a molecule that can bind to the spike protein of COVID-19. You can read more in this article from Good Morning America.

Conservation Efforts Have Made a Difference

Up to 48 species would have become extinct without reintroduction programs, zoo-based conservation, and legal protections enacted since 1993 when the UN Convention on Biological Diversity came into force. Here’s more from The Guardian

Drones Help Indigenous People Spot Illegal Logging in the Amazon Rainforest

With help from the World Wildlife Fund, indigenous Andean tribes are starting to use drones to help protect wildlife and collect evidence on illegal logging in the rainforest. This article from the Good News Network includes an informative video.

Teacher Saves Grandma

On September 22, first grade teacher Julia Koch was teaching her virtual class when she got a call from grandparent Cynthia Phillips about technical difficulties. Ms. Koch noticed Ms. Phillips was having trouble speaking and knew something was wrong. It turns out Ms. Phillips was having a stroke. You can read about how Ms. Koch got help for her student’s grandmother and also sign up for CNN’s Good Stuff here.

Plus, here’s a video!

Thank you to all the teachers on the front lines, virtually and in person!

Got good news?

Please share your good news in the comments or create your own Good News Post and link it back here!


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Good News Tuesday for Oct. 20, 2020: Miracle Baby, River Cleanup, a Stolen Painting Returned, Dementia App Winners, and a Sweet Reunion

Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

One Pound Baby Goes Home After 133 Days

Russell Appold Jr. weighed only one pound when he was born. After fighting for life in neonatal ICU for 133 days, Russel finally went home on October 1st. Here’s more from Good Morning America.

Moving Closer to Sources of Ocean Plastic Pollution

Dutch inventor Boyan Slat is removing plastic from the ten rivers that carry the most pollution to the ocean.

“So if we focus on the worst rivers, we believe we can really have the fastest and most cost-effective way to close the tap and prevent more plastic from reaching the oceans in the first place,” Slat told CNN.

(I’m hoping this initiative will provide information to help decrease plastic pollution at its sources.)

This article from CNN includes an interesting video on the process.

Stolen Painting Returned 87 Years Later

In 1933, the Mosse family had to flee Berlin to escape Nazi rule. Many of their paintings, including “Winter” by American Impressionist Gari Melchers, were stolen by the Nazis. After 87 years, “Winter” was returned to the family heirs at a repatriation ceremony which took place at the FBI office in New York. Here’s the story from CNN.

Teen Girls Win International Award for App to Help Dementia

A team of Nigerian-Irish girls won an international award for the app they developed to help people with dementia. In spite of experiencing racism as mentioned in the video, the girls have kept their spirits high. You can learn more more in this article from the Good News Network.

Married Couple Reunited after 215 Days

Joseph and Eve Loreth have been married 60 years and reside at an assisted living facility in Florida. Since March, they’ve had to be separated for 215 days, with only phone calls and a few window visits, until Joseph made a full recovery from surgery. Here’s the video of their sweet reunion.

Got good news?

Please share in the comments!

Or create your own Good News Tuesday post, and link it back here!