25 March 2020

Finding Joy During Covid-19 House Arrest

Hi Friends! I'm reaching out to the universe to say "Hello! We miss you!" to all the planet. We are on day two of "stay at home" lockdown here in New Mexico, but school has already been out for two weeks and we have basically been self-quarantining since then except for a few necessary departures from home. 

First thing this morning I took dear Hubs to an emergency endodontist appointment. Having a tooth die during a pandemic, while on lockdown is not a lot of fun. Like you need more problems. Thank goodness for Tylenol with Codeine or I'm not sure what would be happening here.

As I said, Kiddo has been out of school now for two weeks already and now with our latest state lockdown that has added at least another week, not that anyone is feeling very optimistic that the kids will go back to school this year. Kiddo says she's learned her lesson about leaving things like jackets in her locker. I think I may have mentioned that in warning a few times over the past three years but no one was listening to me on that. Ha. Whatever it takes, a mom's gentle, wise warning or a global pandemic. Insert "hands thrown up in the air" emotion here and then "laughing" emoji -- haha.

We are staying busy completing a list of chores, tasks and odd jobs around the house that have needed attention. Progress is slower than I had hoped but we are crossing things off just about every day. Yesterday I fixed three loose tiles on our master bath tub. We've been weeding and trimming up the yard in 15 minutes stretches that really end up being 30 but no one has rebelled yet. Crossing my fingers there is no uprising about it not really being 15 minutes even though I keep selling it as that.

The Man has replaced some electrical plugs this week, fixed a plastic storage cupboard that was knocked over and cracked in a crazy wind, and sorted through a box of shoes in the garage. Progress.

Kiddo has finally caught on to the philosophy The Man and I have been preaching for years that if you tidy your room up in a few minutes every day you don't have to spend a whole Saturday cleaning up a giant mess. If there is to be any silver lining to this crazy March 2020, I'll take a long-term commitment to keeping her room clean. But I'm going to hold back my celebratory dance a little longer to see if things stick.

The one person who thinks having the entire pack at home 24/7 is the greatest thing ever it is our German Shepherd. Everyone taking breaks to play with him throughout the day, people to snuggle with, no one too busy for him or leaving home for long hours. This IS his best life!

Meanwhile for we humans there are a lot of stresses underlying all this and worries for the future. Just managing the daily anxiety for children and adults requires a lot of attention and effort. But there is an interesting lesson I've learned as I've watched social media over the past two weeks. Those who are positive are positive still, those you are happy are finding ways to stay happy and make the best of life. Those who are generally grumpy, negative and sour still are. Attitude really is everything! Doesn't matter what you are going through. Some people act like this is only happening to them and some people are reaching out in every way possible to bless others and share love EVEN THOUGH this IS happening to them. Such a life lesson!

A friend dropped off a brownie mix, some microwave popcorn and some chocolate in the cutest bag on our doorstep yesterday. I have lots of friends texting to see if we need anything while they are out. 

Perhaps my favorite act of service this week was after we heard Monday afternoon that the governor was going to put the state under "stay at home" rules. So we decided to run out and just see if we could grab a few more groceries. As we were getting ready to leave, The Man got the brilliant idea to grab some food for our dear "senior" neighbors so they would not have to go out and expose themselves to the potential health risks of grocery shopping. At the store we each got a cart and tried to divide and conquer on our list.

When we met up again his cart was filled with stuff for the neighbors. In the end he delivered a giant box with tons of fresh produce because the wife is a vegetarian, juice, bread, toilet paper and other goods to them. It was so sweet! He tried to doorbell ditch the box at the porch but their dog started barking and the wife saw him. But I thought that was one of the sweetest, most generous things I have ever seen him do -- and he has always been very generous.

So I say, keep on watching out for each other, friends. Keep looking to the positive people to buoy you up. This is hard and none of us has ever done it before -- so we have to give ourselves a lot of grace and be gentle with ourselves. This is a "figure it out day by day" situation. We can do this! Brave and strong! Resilient. Loving and caring for each other.

03 May 2019

What's Up Buttercup?

Goodness it's been a while. It seems I stay in touch with so many of you more often on Instagram and Facebook these days but oh how I've missed the blog. I look back at the 2009-2010 era and how much of our world of communication was through blogs and blog comments. How things have changed.

Life has changed a lot since that time. We now have a teenager in the house, who is busy running to sporting, church and social events, doing math we don't understand and writing essays in a class called Language Arts that we used to call English class. I spend a lot of my time driving her to activities and events, spending long hours at track meets and golf tournaments - and working and studying, while waiting to pick her up from activities, in parking lots around town. I try to make that time really productive since there are a lot of small clusters of time spent that way. It's amazing what I can get done with my phone and a notebook.

We now live in a house on a large lot that requires upkeep...no more depending on the apartment manager to take care of issues and tend all the landscaping. Keeping things in good order, watered and clean takes up an amazing amount of time, but it usually is a labor of love when you see how nice the house looks afterwards.

We live in a state I never expected to live in. New Mexico. It's strange to adjust to being closer to states like Texas, Oklahoma and Colorado when I've been so used to being on the left coast most of my adult life. Living closer to "the middle" always throws me. And just like living in any other state, city or town, there are things we love and things we don't always love so much about our new state. But we try to see the best and contribute our best and enjoy every good thing. Sunsets are definitely one of those. This image is from our street. It's dreamy sunsets here just about every night.

Creatively most of my focus has been spent on the house. Reimaging and redecorating, repairing and reorganizing as we go along, trying to learn who we are in the house and how it will best work for us. It's interesting how after three years you can go back and wonder why you ever did things the way you did in the beginning and to see how much some things just haven't worked for the family. I took over our never utilized family room for my office and have absolutely loved having the open space, a big work area/counter and lots of storage for supplies and tools. Plus it has a lot of windows facing out the front of our house, so there is lots of natural light and nature to watch outside.

We have settled into a wonderful social circle here in New Mexico and that is probably the thing I am most grateful for. When you don't have family support nearby, having a strong network of friends who are family is priceless. We have been so blessed and I hope we are blessing others and helping and supporting as well as we are receiving. I'm looking forward to doing more blogging. I have a long list of things to talk about with you.
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