As the first day of our new normal kicked in I have observed the following – empty shelves in the grocery stores, mass gatherings in parks, crowds a plenty and not much concern for contracting what many call “a mild flu.”
The closing of schools was done to protect the ENTIRE community, it takes the tribe to save the village. So, while we can’t send our kids to school, please don’t swap that out for large gatherings (restaurants, parks, movie theaters, the malls, etc.) We need to trust the doctors and experts, put partisan differences aside and have faith that this plan will work.
Many cities have already closed schools for SIX weeks. I shudder at the thought but if that means that I can see my friends and family who are in one of the hard-hit cities, I’m all for it! I hope our school changes from two to more!
Folks, I believe the ONLY way we can flatten the curve, ease our overcrowded emergency rooms, and keep those we love safe, is to follow the guidelines from the CDC. That includes using soap to wash our hands. Watch Dr. Oz on the Jimmy Fallon show for great tips, and google which songs are perfect for the recommended 20 seconds to soap and scrub. Tell me, what’s your favorite tune you sing while creating all the bubbles, comment below.
I know its disappointing to not hug our parents, shake hands, kiss loved ones goodbye, attend prayer services, and even gather for weekly meals. Instead of looking at the things we are missing, perhaps we can spin this sudden change. Take control of the situation and use the time to focus on our health.
Self-care is often neglected and due to unfortunate circumstances we’ve been given a chance to put ourselves first. Now, before you send me hate mail I understand many of you must work, must interact with people and can’t stay inside your homes. But you CAN control how close you are, follow best hygiene practices and keep to minimal interactions with those in high-risk groups.
So…what do we do with our time at home? There are so many options and here are a few suggestions. Feel free to comment with how you are spending your extra time below!
1. Exercise and/or meditate. Every day give yourself time to go for a run outside, workout at home (on-line videos on YouTube are FREE, Beachbody On Demand for a nominal monthly fee, or even many cable networks have fitness channels) can ease the inconvenience of not going to the gym. If you’re not going to the gym call them and see if they will suspend your monthly membership. The stress relief will help ease your concerns (hopefully) and if not, it will offset the extra calories as you eat through the contents of your pantry ;).
2. Keep your routine. This is true for all ages, don’t change your routine because you are working at home, your kids are home, or you are no longer at work.
A block or time schedule can be helpful. Work with the people in your home to delegate rooms, equipment, tv/gaming systems, and even bathroom time if needed. So many memes floating around about what our days should look like and the reality of how our household will manage. Glad to see people haven’t lost their sense of humor.
Great resources for block schedule can be found on YouTube and Pinterest.
Set a meeting time with the family/members of your house and create a calendar. Close quarters means we are all in this together.
3. Meal Plan. Before panicking that you don’t have enough food to manage these next few weeks take inventory of what you have. This morning I woke up in a panic because I hadn’t bought a few items. Once I had a minute to think and calm down, I realized I had purchased something similar that would substitute just fine.
If you find you are running low or missing something you must have, contact a neighbor or friend and see what you have that you can swap or barter. Even consider sharing a delivery order and safely separating the contents for each other.
4. Educational on-line resources at http://www.amazingeducationalresources.com/ for those with kids pre-school to 12th Grade. I am not paid to post these links and am not responsible for broken links or content. When in doubt … Pinterest always works!
6. Game Night – we love the following
For kids – they can play virtually with a friend who has Battleship. My daughter brilliantly suggested this as we asked what games her friends might have as well. Just set up your board and video chat. Voila. Something to do with a friend and still have fun!
Any board game will work if you each move the friend the appropriate number of spaces. Makes for a fun and unique way to stay connected.
7. Movie Night/ TV Shows. There are on-line libraries or if you’re lucky to have cable, a 24-hour library at your fingertips. Now is the perfect time to re-visit an old favorite or discover a new one.
I’m ready to re-watch The West Wing on Netflix. My DVR is schedule for days and I scored a sweet deal a few weeks ago with the STARZ app so I can stay current with Season 5 of Outlander. If you’re looking for fun family shows … try The Masked Singer and start a pool with who is behind the mask.
8. Take the pets out for a walk. Have an elderly neighbor who can’t? Offer to walk them and be sure to clean the leashes.
9. Discover a new recipe or teach the kids how to cook.This is the perfect time to have kids help prepare, cook and clean. Make it a game show with two main ingredients and they have to discover what to make with items in your pantry.
10. Read. Read. Read. Check out the reviews on my blog for something sweet or spicy. Stalk, I mean follow your favorite , follow authors, browse Overdrive via your local library or favorite bookseller. Many have free reads this week:
11. Check on loved ones and friends often. Everyone will be impacted at some point. Let’s take care of our friends, family and neighbors. Be mindful, respectful and polite. Not all feel necessary to stay at a distance. That is a choice and while I will happily say hello to you at a distance of 6 feet. I still adore you and hope we can shorten the distance soon.
12. Organize and clean up. Cabinets a bit untidy, clothes need to be sorted, bagged for donations or put away? No more excuses.
13. Start that home project. Find an on-line retailer and order what you need. Can’t spend money? Watch a few episodes of Trading Spaces and get creative at home.
14. Crafter/Planner Addict/ Hobby Enthusiast: Are you a crafter? Pull out the yarn, dust off the art supplies, use what you have and get going. I am so excited to see what you create. I’ve got projects still on my knitting needles. Folks, this is going to be so much fun. I can’t wait to start!
Need ideas…check out my Pinterest Board for inspiration.
15. Trust your Covid 19 resources for up-to-date information. Not all information is truthful. Not everyone who is sick has Covid 19, there are still other fun viruses traveling around so please, please, please wash your hands!
16. If you’re sick. Don’t rush to the ER. Call your Doctor and make a plan. We need to keep our health care professionals safe so that when we need them, they are healthy to take care of us.
17. Send a care package to those working on the front-lines. They are exhausted.
18. Buy gift cards from local shops to use once this is contained. Imagine the fun it will be to re-connect and enjoy dining/shopping at our usual places if you choose to stay at home or are unable in your community.
19. If you must go out – be mindful of your distance. Practice spacial distancing. Consider shopping at off times, be patient as lines will be long, be mindful that others need similar products and leave a few.
20. Thank those working the registers, re-stocking the shelves, still cooking and serving at the restaurants, and working in our communities while the rest of us reduce our time out.
I am right her with you and hope that you’ll visit and share your adventures.
I love you all a latte!