Saturday, August 9, 2014

Your Brain on Naps

One day, while in the U.S this past spring, I had a challenging morning. We met with an accountant to get some advice about how best to to continue our bookkeeping. It went really well, and I loved Dara, but the stress of looking over our records left me exhausted and with a killer backache.

I decided to rest for a little while. Just before I did that though, I wanted to find my iPhone. I looked all over and couldn't find it. I was a little worried. Since it didn't work as a phone while in the States I couldn't call it to find it by the ringing. Like Scarlett, I decided to 'think about that later'.

I lay down with a book and it wasn't long before I began to doze off.

Napping is a wonderful thing. Did you know that Thomas Edison got very little sleep at night, but he kept himself energized by taking power naps? And he wasn't alone. Many famous people used this strategy.

After attending my sister's wedding in Dallas last April, we drove back to Houston the long way so Timmy could see his girlfriend and Tom could meet her for the first time. Tom was exhausted from the wedding so I did the majority of the driving. At one point I was so tired I couldn't see straight any more so I pulled into a gas station, set my timer for 15 minutes and fell asleep. When my timer went off I pulled back onto the road completely refreshed. Power naps are amazing!

Anyway, when I lay down that particular spring day in Houston I read for a few minutes and then fell asleep. When I relaxed enough into the nap that I couldn't hold onto the book anymore it fell from my hand and hit the floor noisily waking me up. In that exact moment I knew where my phone was! The truly amazing thing was, I actually woke up and saw in my mind's eye where my phone was as the book was falling, which upon hiting the floor made the noise which woke me which causes all sorts of confusion about what came first, the chicken or the egg, the noise or the waking, etc. Since I'm not a Time Lord I will leave that one be....

Last month Tom misplaced a bag full of notebooks. He was distressed about it because he'd promised to pass them out to the police officers during the Mutomboko Ceremony. If he couldn't find them he'd be terribly embarrassed. We all pitched in to help find them. However, they were nowhere to be found. I encouraged Tom to stop thinking about it and just go to sleep. We'd check with the kids in the morning to see if they had seen the bag when helping to unload the car. Otherwise, there was really nothing we could do.
A few minutes after Tom fell asleep he woke up again, walked into the office, picked up a flashlight, and walked straight to the top shelf of his clothes closet and pushed aside some shirts to reveal the bag of notebooks.
He still has no memory of placing them there.

It seems that in order for our subconscious mind to work efficiently, we need to get the conscious mind out of the way.

I feel there is a metaphor there someplace…….

Have you had any Amazing Brain episodes? Tell me about them!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Ebola Epidemic News

I'm in Lusaka right now with my main computer, which despite being practically brand new, has chosen to not turn on or boot up at all. While it's being repaired I'm running errands and getting a few Lusaka jobs done. I'm using a mini-computer to try and do some writing as well.

I've received a few anxious inquiries from people who have heard of the Ebola Outbreak and want to know if we are at risk here in Zambia. Since I'm without my good internet connection and big computer I'm going to borrow the image from one of the local organizations that wrote a blog post showing a map of Africa and where the outbreak is in relation to Zambia. Go take a look

As you can see from the map in the post above, we are not at risk at this time

We are in prayer for those who are affected, especially the aid workers who are laying down their lives to help others in West Africa.

In the meantime we are keeping a close eye on the progression of the disease and preparing.

If, God forbid, Ebola should reach Zambia Tom and I have discussed contingency plans. We would close our doors and ask those caring for the children to remain at the orphanage until the danger has passed. Tom and I would take care of gathering food and supplies--taking all necessary precautions. While it is a very deadly virus, it is not airborne and so can be contained using basic safety measures. We have gloves and masks we can use.

Generally we try to keep at least one month's supply of food in the pantry, plus we have goats and ducks to use for meat so we will be able to get along for quite some time. 

Discussing these plans can seem a bit morbid at times, but we believe it is good to be prepared for all possibilities. 

Thank you for your continued prayers as we care for God's children here in Zambia. Also, be in prayer for all who are affected by the Ebola virus. 

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