The last few days have been difficult for our nation. We have seen many negative images on our TV screens, and it may be hard for many people to stay positive. But here in Marshall, Illinois, we know what it means to be an American. We are as American as apple pie and the fourth of July. We know that even though we face political turmoil, a vicious virus, and general unrest, this too shall pass. We will come together as a country and do what is needed not just to survive but thrive.
Some positive things to note
The vaccines are being distributed across our fair state. Vaccinations for health care workers are well underway in the Chicago area and across Illinois.
By the last week of December, the state of Illinois had received 108,225 doses of the Pfizer vaccine and 161,400 doses of the Moderna vaccine. That does not include the doses that have been sent to the city of Chicago, and more have been arriving each week. Help is on the way!!
Recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine are working on the entire nation’s rollout. Soon, you and your family will be able to get the vaccine should you choose to do so. In the meantime, health care workers are getting vaccinated in the Chicago area and across the state. Nursing home patients and those over 65 or with chronic health issues are in line to get vaccinated first. These efforts are ramping up slowly but steadily.
Yes, we will still have to stay positive, and stay the course and wear our masks and social distance, but the hope is on the horizon that we will get back to something near to our old normal in due time.
Donate Blood if You Can
COVID19 continues to impact the level of blood products needed at area hospitals for the many patients still suffering from the virus and other illnesses.
Maintaining a safe blood supply is crucial. Hospitals encourage you to donate if you are an eligible donor.
Seek places you can donate blood. Call your local hospital for information on bloodmobiles and donor efforts near you.
Find a Way to Share Kindness
Many people are sick and suffering. The cold weather brings on flues and colds, so many are not plagued by COVID but can still be sick, and many older folks are alone. Many families are suffering from the loss of income and may not be able to put food on the table.
Now is a good time to reach out to someone in your neighborhood who may be older and need a little assistance or provide a meal for folks going hungry.
January is national oatmeal, soup, and hot tea month. What a great way to reach out to someone who may be too sick to make a hot meal. Delivering some hearty soup or homemade oatmeal might be a way to show them some kindness.
Take care of yourselves and stay positive.
If you’re stuck in the house, make a pot of hot tea for you and your loved ones. Tea is soothing and good for both body and soul. So is soup and oatmeal, for that matter.
Look up new soup recipes. Winter soups like cream of potato, tomato basil cream soup, or butternut squash can be a meal in and of itself or great with a grilled cheese sandwich for dipping. Make cooking a fun project for everyone in the house, and it will lift your spirits. Find ways to make oatmeal fun and exciting. Try adding berries or Nutella. Banana-coconut, apple or pumpkin pie and peanut butter oatmeal recipes are easy to follow. There is always good old brown sugar maple.
Even though staying at home is still the best way to stay safe and healthy, you and your family can enjoy a belly-warming feast together. You can check in on those less fortunate and make sure they have a warm meal.
Americans are resilient. We made it through the worst year in the last hundred and our lifetimes. 2021 has started with a tumultuous bang, but we’re still here. We are still Marshall strong, so keep the faith and lift one another as we begin to heal physically and mentally. We’ve got this!