A COVID-19 Response

25 March 2020

Hello! It seems every email I open these days begins with that title so why not join? Are you tired of Corona talk? I am growing weary of it but realize it's just part of our life right now. I started a post last week and just didn't know what to say and so I didn't. 

Our schools are online until May 1 now and that seems like a LONG time away!!  And I have older kids who mostly tackle their schoolwork every day by themselves. I have productive days where I am gung-ho about laundry, organization, and projects and then other days that are completely lazy and slow and I'm okay with that. I feel like our world was probably in need of a big pause and a reason to slow down?

I went to our local grocery store for bananas and milk yesterday and I love how they replaced their usual sale signs with ones like this:

And I noticed someone leaving quarters in the little toy machines. I feel like most people are making an effort to reach out and find goodness despite the off the charts range of emotions that I feel like we are all feeling.

My neighbors have taken needed supplies to the homeless shelter and elderly assistance drives and have asked us to leave bags on our porch if we want to contribute. I have loved seeing the bags and waves from the porches. One of my neighbors asked us to hide teddy bears and stuffed animals in windows and it was so fun to see children pointing them out on walks. I'm in amazement at what my kids' teachers have given them for creative and meaningful assignments. My heart hurts for small businesses like florists and dry cleaners and local garden centers trying to make it through these months. Tears for canceled trips, senior class events, a promising track season, missionaries coming home from missions that have become part of them. But I have the hope that things will get better and we'll be better because of experiencing it. ♥ Here is what we've been doing:

Favorite Activity so far: Nightly walks --it's so good to get out and get fresh air and appreciate the beauty. Also flying kites these past few windy days. I can't remember the last time we flew kites! (until we crash landed one on my neighbor's roof -- dang it!)

Listening to: this daddy-daughter duet of The Prayer. So beautiful and encouraging.

 Laughing at: Can we all give praise to the memes that are keeping us afloat right now? A few favorites:

For dinner tonight: It snowed here this morning. *sigh* A good excuse to stay inside though?  
Easy Potato Cheese Soup 
Jamie's Breadsticks 
Favorite Salad 

Reading: I just finished listening to The Nightingale and had a good cry. If you want to feel good about the situation that you are in, this is a perfect story to remind you of what you have during this pandemic and make you think hard about love, loyalty, survival, being a mother, protecting children, standing up, and the ravages of war. 

Making lots of: foolproof bread! We're all about comfort carbs here. I updated this recipe with pictures and video on my Insta-stories.

Shopping: LOFT is having 40% off with free shipping and returns with code SMILE.  I love these $20 cardigans! ♥

Working on: Trying to offset our carb comforts with a family fitness challenge! We are just recording our stats at the beginning of the stay at home and comparing them each week. This is what we track:

- How many situps in 1 minute

- Pushups in 30 seconds 
- How long can you plank (or how far into Bring Sally Up can you go?)
- How fast can you walk/run a mile? 

The goal is just to get better each week. You can do half pushups (on your knees) or do crunches instead of full situps but just keep the method the same each week so you can track your progress.

I hope you are taking good care of yourselves, whatever that looks like right now. ♥ Blessings to each of you. You got this.

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