I’m alive and well. I’m bunkering down with my family doing my best to still get some things done, even with all the kids at home all the time.
Here are a few thoughts I have on getting through this.
After the first few days of largely unstructured time, my wife created a schedule for the kids. The intention was to use it as a rough guide for how to get through the day. But our oldest regularly checks it and informs us what is supposed to be happening at any given time.
The schedule has some great benefits.
- It ensures a variety of activities. This gives the kids lots of things to look forward to and provides us some means to encourage them to behave and get chores done. Certain activities are dependent on good behavior.
- It creates a routine. I used to be skeptical of the value of routine for kids. But we have always benefited from routines. They help me to keep on track with all the stuff I’ve got to keep track of. And they set expectations for the kids so they know what’s coming next.
- It makes flexibility easier. Because we know what things must get done, it helps us do that and have time to move things around when necessary.
We’ve had a lot of peace of mind partially because I listened to a “The Daily” episode about coronavirus early in March. The one suggestion to prepare was to have a month’s supply of food and prepare for quarantine. So, a couple days later, I went out and got that. We had some portions of this supply because our church encourages emergency preparedness. The coronavirus gave us the extra incentive to buy the rest. Here’s another resource that may help if you’d like to start working on your own.
I’m not encouraging hoarding. The time to go out and buy a bunch of food at once, like I did, has passed. Fortunately, there is still plenty of food in the grocery stores. Consider buying just a little more than you’ll eat each week and slowly build a cushion into your food supply.
Having this supply has helped us to wait out the worst panic and gives us peace of mind in case we need to stay home completely.
Whenever I see posts about people being bored while social distancing, I think wistfully of the last time I was bored. Pretty sure it was around six years ago when Naomi started walking.
The issue for us isn’t boredom, but maintaining sanity when surrounded by children and having little time to ourselves. So, I’ve been trying to fit some personal time into all the activities on that schedule.
- Writing: it’s been spotty, as evidenced by the lack of blog posts. But I did figure out a structural element for my NaNoWriMo novel that will help me revise it into something more readable. Maybe by this November it will be ready to share.
- Habit: Do yardwork 15 minutes, 5 days a week. Going well! I’ve done most of the drip and mist irrigation for our garden, pulled out some diseased rosebushes, and raked up the spring droppings of the live oaks. Live oaks are really, really messy trees.
- Project: Due to all that food storage we bought, we have reorganized our pantry. We realized a while ago that there is room to extend the pantry shelves 4 inches and we would gain a lot of room by doing so. Buying all that food storage gave me the incentive to actually start working on that. I’ve cut the shelves and now I just need to sand and paint them. Once that’s done, I’ll move on to the desk.
I haven’t given up on January’s habit for daily physical activity. I’ve been running and biking at least 3 times a week. I’m hoping that May’s triathlon will still happen, though I have a feeling it will be postponed. And in between, I do some yoga and stretching. This has helped with my knee, which gave me trouble when I started training in earnest for last year’s triathlon.
With Alisha home all the time, I find it easier to avoid snacking. Plus, she is trying to get down to her pre-pregnancy weight and challenged me to lose the same number of lbs. I figured I didn’t have chance against a nursing mother, but so far I’m holding my own.
What have you been doing to get through social distancing and stay-at-home orders?