Jul 18, 2020 | Quarantine Diaries, What's going on |
I am over this stupid virus.
I really reached a breaking point with it last week. I so desperately want life to be normal again. I don’t want to worry about visiting family because I might get my grandma sick. I hate going to the store with people who stand a mile away at check out like they think one of the other customers is about to explode. I remember back in March, at the very beginning of quarantine, saying to Christopher that if “they” could promise this would all be over by July 1st I’d stay home and do whatever they asked so life could get back to normal. July seemed so far off and I needed to hold onto the hope that it would be over by then. Young, naive Sarah. When all the protests started, I kept thinking, “If only we could go back to only having the virus to worry about.”
I haven’t had a wedding or graduation canceled, but it hasn’t been a walk in the park either. The beginning of the virus coincided with the beginning of my ectopic pregnancy. I spent weeks going to the doctor every few days for ultrasounds and blood tests. I’d slink out of the house praying that the neighbors weren’t watching and judging for me leaving again. At the time, our town had the third-highest number of cases per capita in the world but I had to go to the hospital for a shot in the midst of it all. The nurse didn’t know where to put me so I sat next to the nurses’ station while the vice president of the hospital and several high ups stood three feet away from me and planned how to turn that wing of the hospital into the new covid-specific emergency room. Two hours later, they started bringing positive cases in, walking them right by me.
Annabelle’s emotions have been up and down. Some days she’s fine but everything in her little world is topsy turvy. She’s desperate to see friends. Every time she asks to play with a new friend it’s a dance of “Are you ok getting together? I am but if you’re not, that’s fine! We can see you in 14 weeks if things have improved!” By now we know who is and who isn’t fine with visits so at least we have that. We can’t go to splash pads or library activities. She put a tiny paper mask on her doll and it made me tear up. I don’t want her growing up in this new world.
I want to go to the store without worrying. Our TJMaxx was open for several weeks before I went in. I didn’t want a visit to my favorite store to be ruined by masks and directional stickers on the floor. Some of the arrows were pointing in opposite directions in one-way aisles so it was impossible to follow. We went to Bath & Body Works but we had to call first to see if they were open because we can’t assume these days. They were, but only allowed 13 people in at a time. Trying to keep us separated seemed pointless when we were all standing next to each other to pick up and smell candles and lotions. The cashier told me to put the items on the counter so she wouldn’t have to touch them, but she touched them anyway when she put them in the bag. At Publix, their new thing is to make the customers stand so far away from the card reader that it can’t physically be reached. Once the bagger is done bagging the customer is ”allowed” to move forward and pay. Meanwhile over in produce, Elmer is chatting with everyone while he restocks peaches and peppers a foot away from shoppers. Kevin is restocking crackers right next to customers. I know everyone is doing the best they can and none of us have gone through this before, but I don’t understand some decisions.
Don’t get me started on having to make educational choices for this year.
On the very tiny bright side, there’s a small part of me that likes that literally everyone in the world is being affected by the same thing. I used to say delivering a baby was the great equalizer and I’m going to add global pandemics to the list. We used to talk about the weather when there was nothing else to say. Now we talk about what has become the new hot commodity at the grocery store. It’s fascinating to read articles and watch videos by people going through the same thing in other countries. High School Musical was ahead of the times when they sang, “We’re all in this together” back in 2006.
I know we’re very fortunate and that millions of people have it much worse, but it’s still hard. It’s like we’re living in a snowglobe that’s been shaken, thrown against the wall, shattered into a hundred pieces then stomped on by a bull. But let me tell you how I really feel! I’m so thankful that Annabelle doesn’t know the full extent of what’s happening. Last night at bedtime she prayed, “Thank you that everything is going so well.” I’m glad she feels that way!
Jun 2, 2020 | In a People House, Quarantine Diaries |
This about sums up 2020 so far, wouldn’t you say?
For all the horrible things that happened last week, I present two bright spots- Americans went into space for the first time in nearly a decade and I doubled my previous Tetris score. They are both of equal importance and value to society. As many people want to interview me for my accomplishments as want to interview the astronauts. I’ll happily offer my advanced
gaming critical thinking and block organizing skilz to Bob and Doug.
Thursdays aren’t the most exciting day of the week to have a birthday but Christopher and Annabelle made it festive for me. Annabelle drew me this picture with the following note which translates (I’ve been told) to “Happy birthday! Yum yum we’re making strawberry shortcake! Snuggle contest!”
Normally I go to the florist and pick out my own birthday bouquet, but this year I sent Christopher a list of flowers I wanted to be included or left out along with the number to the florist and he got them for me. Linus has since eaten half a rose and several hydrangea flowers.
Rumor has it that yesterday was the last Sunday before we can go back to church like normal. “Like normal” is a generous term as we’ll be meeting in cars or chairs in the parking lot like we’re attending a little league game but at least we’ll be with others. If you had asked me when this pandemic started what I thought I’d miss, not going to church wouldn’t have been the top of the list but after 13 weeks away I’ll be so glad to be back.
That being said, I’ve kind of enjoyed the Sunday morning routine we got into these last months. Christopher sleeps late while AB and I play. At 11 we gather at Gray Couch Church and watch the service. I usually cross stitch and Annabelle either colors or does sewing. We have logged in late a few times which is pathetic considering we have to travel exactly zero miles to be at church.
It’s only Monday but this has not been a great week for homeownership. One of the lights and fan in the kitchen went out several weeks ago and we haven’t gotten it fixed. The dishwasher is on its last legs and when I went to unload it, most of the dishes were still dirty so I unloaded it and washed everything by hand. Annabelle washed her hands in the bathroom and says she only touched the light fixture (“I promise I didn’t swing on it!”), but the bathroom light, the remaining kitchen light, washing machine and dryer, as well as the dishwasher all stopped working. I didn’t know the dishwasher had stopped working until I loaded it all with the supper dishes. I had to unload and handwash all the dishes I had just put in. The circuit panel was installed upside down and it’s unclear whether the paper labeling which switches goes with which room is also upside down. The handle on the door to the backyard that we use dozens of times a day fell off in my hand. It wouldn’t open from the inside but would from the outside so it became a oneway door. Christopher got the handle to go back on but it’s hanging on by the metal equivalent of a thread.
|Actual footage of money leaving our bank account to pay for these repairs.
The electrician and I played phone tag all day. I called both their numbers this morning and left two messages but heard nothing back. I went to call them an hour ago and saw that earlier I had dialed the area code wrong and called someone in Ontario. Bob and Doug will not be asking me to head up their communications department.
May 15, 2020 | Quarantine Diaries |
I have two, with a pending third, things in the books for next week so our schedule is about to get full again. What kind of wild life are we living with THREE events in one week? Counting the couch repairman coming as a “wild life” is a bit of a stretch, but such are the times we’re living in.
Annabelle was recently asking for specifics about adoption while we were driving with the windows down. “I was wondering how you pick a child. Is it like a deli? Or is it more like a pizza delivery? Or like a restaurant where you order? And can you turn down the sound of the wind for me?” The answer is no to all those questions.
We were on our morning walk and she was chatting as she usually does. “I can’t wait for spring to finish so summer can start and finish and then fall can start.” “What’s going to happen in the fall?” I asked. “I’ll get to do school and learn lots of new things and it will be so fun.” I think she meant she’ll be excited for the homeschool groups to start back up, but we’re still doing school for this year! She does not seem so excited about doing it every morning.
AB spent a significant amount of time on Tuesday evening crying. She would not tell me what was wrong, but she requested I “leave and shut the door’ when I went to check on her in her room. She lay on her bed, crying and sniffling. All she could get out was the quarantine might have something to do with it. Yesterday I was in the other room and I heard her pause her story multiple to say something. I thought she was talking to me but she said she wasn’t. Later on, she paused the story again and said, “Dear Lord. Please help me not to have a loose tooth.” Then later, “Dear Lord. Please help me not to believe I have a loose tooth.” I had to break it to her that losing teeth is going to happen, regardless of how much she prays for the contrary. We’re in for a long road of it if she gets so upset at the thought of losing teeth when she doesn’t have any loose ones. Hopefully getting money from the Tooth Fairy every time will make it a little easier.
We pay a yard crew to do our lawn. They do the grass and we do the weeding, trimming (when the trimmer works), etc. The other day they were over at the same time as I was out watering the tiny plants in my garden. One of them said something about how he had used bug spray last time he was over and for me to let him know if I didn’t want anything sprayed. He gestured to my flower garden and said, “Did you plant something there?” “Yes, I put flower seeds in a few weeks ago. Is that a problem? Should I have done it somewhere else?” Why would I ask if it was a problem? It’s my garden! I’m too much of a people pleaser. Oh, my garden in my own yard is possibly in your way? Let me dig up the whole thing and move it somewhere more convenient for you. While I’m at it, how about I take down any pictures from my walls that aren’t your style? Lawn Guy stared at me. He only wanted to know if he should spray it or not.
I’m am a very frugal person but this quarantine is turning me into a woman who wants to press buy now
on purchases left and right. I have wanted to purchase many unnecessary items but the latest is a new low. The Jawzersize
promises me a chiseled jaw in 60 days. Reduction of double chins! Free shipping on US orders! SIGN ME UP. I could work on my jawline while Annabelle uses her jaw to tell endless stories about her perspective on the day she was born.
May 9, 2020 | Quarantine Diaries |
Tuesday, May 5th
5:45am- Christopher’s alarm goes off in 15-minute increments until he gets up at 6:30.
6:45- My alarm went off but evidently I turned it off and go back to sleep.
7:43- I was awakened by Annabelle in the doorway asking for breakfast. She must be going through a growth spurt. She used to lay in bed and cuddle and we could start the day slowly but those days are gone. She skips all the morning sentimentality and asks to eat instantly. I sent her in the kitchen to get the cereal while I get dressed and made the bed.
8:02- She tells me we have no milk but I had the foresight to buy an extra gallon and put it in the outside freezer. I go out there but there is no milk to be found. I look in the kitchen refrigerator but it isn’t there. I go back out to the garage in case I missed it, but missing a gallon of milk in a mostly empty refrigerator seemed unlikely. I later learned Christopher threw it out because it went bad.
8:12- We decide to fry quail eggs instead. I had never eaten quails or their eggs, but I bought them on a whim at the grocery store then side-eyed them for several days without trying them. It seemed like the day to try them and they were surprisingly good. AB likes to crack eggs but we didn’t know quail eggs have a thicker shell so she banged it harder and harder until it exploded on her hair and my shirt.
9:00- We went on our daily walk and met a new neighbor and his dog. He gave a lengthy explanation of the meaning behind his dog’s name.
9:45- We started the school day with reading and handwriting. I called the furniture company about a rip in the couch and the woman told me to text her a picture of the rip so she could assess the damage. I do it immediately but she never responded and I didn’t think any more about it.
10:30- The kitchen sink leaked and soaked my new kitchen rug. I took everything out from under the sink and used all our rags drying it up. Linus escaped out the back door and charged around the yard like a wild animal. I got him back in the house and made myself an ice coffee. I seldom drink coffee in the morning but I could see where this day was going and I needed to brace myself.
11:15- We went out on the deck to practice reading Ollie the Goose. Christopher came home early and Annabelle read to him.
11:50- We finished making our tin can telephones. We experimented the day before with paper cups because we only had one empty can, but I emptied another so we could do it the real way. We were unsuccessful and heard nothing through the cans.
12:00- I made lunch while Annabelle listened to Samantha, made paper dolls and requested a pre-lunch snack of crackers. While we eat lunch she kept listening to Samantha so I could read my book.
12:30- The sink leaked again so I took everything out again and dried it down again. I went to put the wet towels in the laundry room and discovered that one of the cats (my money is on Lucy) peed in the laundry basket. Generally, when they have accidents it’s because their litter box is full. I changed the litter but the bag I put it in had a hole so it spilled all over the floor. Meanwhile, AB was in my room cutting out paper snowflakes as one does in May.
|I turned around and these jokers were relaxing on the table
like they’re the ones who had a stressful day.
12:58- I made a second ice coffee.
1:00- I got a text from a random number saying they didn’t need a picture of my couch.That explains
why Sharon never responded hours before.
1:02- I cannot explain why I looked this up, but for the next fifteen minutes I researched artificial eyes.
1:15- I needed to print something for school but Annabelle used the last of the printer paper for her snowflakes. She’s used several small trees worth of paper since January.
1:25 to 5:30- We finished school, played in the living room, reading Ollie, made a phone call, dug out the slipnslide, found the pump, inflated the slipnslide, handed out snacks, did laundry, watered plants, prepped supper and attempted to blog. Tuesday afternoons are supposed to be my afternoon off. I try to keep it free for reading, crafting or whatever I want to do. I try not to do cleaning or house-related things but sometimes it doesn’t work out well. Every time I started to do my own thing I got disrupted by something. I got more frustrated than I should have and raised my voice before deciding to give up on my afternoon off.
6:23- We had roasted brussel sprouts and carrots and chicken marsala for supper. Annabelle asked about America’s allies and Christopher’s deployments.
7:15- I was desperately in need of alone time so I let the others clean up from supper while I planted my flowers and went for a walk. I listened to The Giver of Stars while I walked. It was so good. When I get back, I took a shower then did devotions with Annabelle and put her to bed. We’ve had the Jesus Storybook Bible for years and years but never read it for two reasons. One, it’s extremely popular and I have an issue with getting on some very popular trains. Two, I could never get past the illustrations. I HATE them. I think they’re horrendous and a blindfolded child could do better. If the illustrator ever reads this, I mean no ill-will against you! I’m sure you’re great! The pictures are just not my type of art. My refusal to read it was the very definition of judging a book by its cover. But a few months ago we exhausted all our other Bible storybooks so I started to read it. Low and behold, it’s pretty good. That may be why it’s sold millions of copies and has been translated in 38 languages. A few times a week we do this prayer journal as well.
9:30ish- I do a few things on the computer then we watch two episodes of Community.
May 7, 2020 | Quarantine Diaries |
I tried all day yesterday to blog but every single time I sat down, the cat ran out of the house or the laundry needed to be switched or Miss No Personal Bubble was three inches from my face.
We celebrated our anniversary last week by wearing fancy clothes and eating takeout in the dining room. I hadn’t worn the dress since I was slightly smaller so it didn’t zip all the way in the back but no one else was at Restaurant de Personal Dining Room so it didn’t matter. Annabelle ate in the kitchen while facetiming with Grammy and Elizabeth. It worked out well for all involved. Somehow we’ve been married for nine years but it feels like two. It’s gone by SO fast.
Annabelle wrote us this card. “Der mom and dad. Hop you hav a hape anovrsre.”
Poor Sesame was getting droopy and sad last week from missing her friends and her normal life. I’ve tried to keep as much of a normal schedule as possible while adding in a little extra fun, but I can’t replace her swimming, ballet or playdates. Several times I’d find her laying on the floor in her bedroom or the living room, staring into space. I decided we needed to get out of the house so Monday we had a Mommy Sesame date. We needed to go grocery shopping anyway, so we drove an hour and a half to a town with an Aldis and an open park. There were very few people at the park so we weren’t in anyone’s way. It made me so happy to see her splashing around. She kept telling me, “This is the best quarantine day I’ve ever had.”
Reading for pleasure has finally started to click for AB. She loves the Ollie the gossling books and we’ve read all the stories our library has in the series. She likes to sit in one chair on the deck with I sit in another and she reads to me. It’s still not completely smooth sailing but it’s much better than a few months ago. I don’t particularly enjoy teaching reading but it’s very rewarding that she’s getting into it.
Other than that it’s been “normal” shelter in place life. Our state has eased up some and technically we’re allowed to go out as we please, but the numbers are still rising so no new stores opened up and we’re not going out any more than before. We are now allowed to resume getting tattoos which is not something I ever consider getting, but quarantine Sarah is getting restless so who knows what a wild Wednesday night may bring. I don’t understand how we’re to maintain the preferred 6ft apart when getting a tattoo but I’ll keep you posted if I try it. Maybe I’ll get AB’s anovrsre letter tattooed on my forehead.
Apr 22, 2020 | Quarantine Diaries |
It looks like we’ll have to move again which is a shame because I love our house.
I saw two frogs in my yard.
The first one was on my car. I was going to get Christopher to deal with it but the car windows were open and I was worried the frog would hop into the car while I was finding him. Besides, I am woman hear me roar and all that. I swatted it off with a piece of mail while gagging. A few days later I went out to water the strawberry plants. I aimed the hose into the watering can and came face to face with a frog. I screamed and kicked the watering can. So much for “hear me roar.” More like “hear me scream like a great lady who has seen a mouse.” At the same time, something fell out of the tree above me and landed on my head. It cannot be confirmed, but I assume it was another frog. I blasted the water into the can for a good 30 seconds to get the frog out before realizing that the frog wasn’t even in it. He was sitting on the outside watching me like a lump on a log. I blasted him again and again while he lazily hopped around the yard. Did I blast him for longer than necessary? Yes. Would I have been upset if I drowned him? No.
If anyone knows of a reptile free home please let me know. Until we find a suitable spot, I will be living with my family in sanitized boxes at the end of the driveway.
Speaking of sanitation, I found a random container of Clorox wipes and several small bottles of hand sanitizer in the closet. Being
a semi hoarder prepared with multiple supplies has paid off. I also ended up with four digital thermometers which I will admit is a bit excessive, but I’ll be ready when the first three die!
Our new corona routine is pretty well established. It’s not all that different from our BC (Before Coronavirus) routine but we’ve made a few changes. Going for a walk before we start school has helped us get through the morning more smoothly. I didn’t realize how much I relied on the alone time during AB’s ballet and swimming lessons, but now that I don’t have it I really miss it. I don’t know why but it seems like much more than two hours when we’re trying to fill the time at home. I haven’t been feeling well for most of this pandemic which adds a layer of difficulty but we’re getting by. The mental part has gotten to me so I have to make a real effort to be more patient with Annabelle. I know this upheaval affects her too so I’m trying to find ways for her to get out of the house more. Last Friday we went to the farm to pick strawberries. We were so excited to see somewhere new. We were like prisoners seeing the sun for the first time in eight years. Appropriate distance was maintained by all and while we barely came into contact with anyone, it was nice to see other people across the field.
Annabelle kept saying, “I had so much fun picking strawberries and seeing the goats. This is a good Mama Sesame date.”
We went really wild and ran into the grocery store after berry picking. AB has to either fold her hands or I put a wipe on the cart and she puts her hand on that. Every time I go to the store it looks different. I didn’t know the aisles had been changed to one-way so I kept going the wrong way. There are more tape squares on the floor showing everyone where to stand. A cashier kept yelling, “Social distance! Social distance!” which was unnecessary. No one in the checkout line was doing the ”wrong” thing. Give us the information and trust us all to stand in the right blue square. She made my very small contrary streak come out. It’s interesting/sad to see what the new hot items are. I usually buy two soaps so I have a backup (see above where I discuss my desire to be prepared) but this week the sign said I was only allowed to buy one.
We’ve been getting any craft supplies from Michael’s curbside pickup but I needed to run in for something. The manager was standing at the locked door and only unlocking it to let customers out and counting everyone who wanted to get in. She only let in ten people at a time and we had a 15-minute time limit. It made me really sad.
Lucy is dealing with this new life in the right way. Let’s all take naps until this is over.