Wow! The difference a week makes. Last Friday, I was blathering on and on about all of the fun events my blog was going to be a part of and this week they’re all canceled. This reminds me a little bit of when my children were younger and I would stock pile my one babysitter day each week with work meetings and errands, only to have one of them get sick and I’d have to throw all of those plans out the window. But the blessing in those days was that everything was forced to become quieter and more simple because there was nothing else we could do. And that’s exactly where I find myself with all of the changes coming my way with the news of this terrible coronavirus.
The amount of information about this virus and the measures the U.S. is finally taking is overwhelming. My biggest take away is that while we don’t want to panic, we do want to be socially responsible. All of the news reports are asking for our helping in “flattening the curve.” What this means is that by taking the precautions outlined by the CDC and WHO of frequently washing our hands, not touching our faces, drinking lots of water (warm if possible), and practicing social distancing–we can make a difference in slowing down how this disease will spread. This is absolutely critical in how we can help our health care professionals manage what’s happening.
What Is Social Distancing?
I had never heard of “social distancing” until this week. The idea is that people will make a conscious effort to reduce close contact with others, ideally three to six feet between yourself and another person. I thought this article from The Atlantic was helpful in getting my arms around this concept. Canceling large events, school, college classes, and having people work remotely will go along way towards achieving this goal of social distancing. But it does also mean we need to practice caution when we do everyday things like going to the grocery store. Avoiding peek hours is key and staying home if you have any kind of sickness is absolutely crucial. If you can’t do it for yourself, please consider those who are elderly or unwell or caring for someone who is older or whose health is compromised in some way. The ripple effect of our actions is unlimited.
What’s the Best Way to Prepare Our Homes?
If you’re anything like me, the run on disinfectants, toilet paper, and cold medicine is like nothing I’ve ever seen. I think I have these areas covered, but I’ve been wondering about what else I should have on hand. USA Today posted this story yesterday that I thought was helpful. Also, in meal planning for the next week or so, I’ve been trying to think of recipes that could be repurposed a couple of different ways. For example, we’ll chili one night and then use the chili leftovers for taco salad on another. Or make spaghetti one night, and use the leftovers in a lasagna or pasta bake on another. We might not be eating quite as lean as we have in the past, but I’m thinking we’ll need to be a little more resourceful in the coming weeks.
Structuring Our Days With a Full House
Homeschooling and having my husband work from home full-time has never been part of my plan, but here we go, right? I’ve been a little bit nervous about our new home/school/work arrangement, but I saw this post from Abby Moran and thought she had some great insight into this new e-schooling situation.
From Abby Moran:
What I know:
1. Kids thrive on routines. (Simplicity Parenting by Kim John Payne is a great read at any time but might be particularly helpful right now. He has free audio clips on his website, too.)
2. Kids need to know that their grown ups are in charge.
3. This generation of kids is more anxious than previous generations, and we need to be mindful of how our adult anxieties are getting passed on to kids.
4. All people need a balance of social, private, intellectual, academic, physical, spiritual, and creative expression to feel their best.
5. My kids (and I think many others) experience a “screen time hangover” if we start our day with screens: they’re crabbier and lower energy.
What I hope:
My family and my community remain healthy.
My kids emerge from this situation calm, compassionate, and connected.
We learn some things.
We do some good.
We have some fun.
I don’t melt down.
We look back on this time with fondness.
What I’m currently thinking re: a daily schedule:
Family time: movie, game, reading, walk, house project
At this point, I’m not sure. But I will do my best to share anything I find helpful, as well as some fun things along the way.
Hang in there! We’ve got this if we all work together!