I’ve not been blogging here for quite some time but these extraordinary times have brought me back and I thought I would try and keep a short diary of how we are managing to get through it all.
As we get to the end of our first week of lockdown here it’s hard to believe how much has changed in such a short time. Schools are shut. Most shops are shut (Food stores and pharmacies are open of course). Bars, restaurants, clubs, sport centres, etc. All shut. So many work places are shut and people have had to switch to home office wherever possible.
I must admit the first week has not been easy but it’s not been the huge shock to the system I though it would be. I knew it was coming so I was somewhat prepared. I didn’t do any panicked shopping or huge stock ups. I made sure that we had the essentials that we always do and I simply restocked anything we were short in the usual quantities that we always buy. The important items on my last-minute shopping lists were potting compost, seeds, printer paper and glue. Why those things? Well spring is here and I want to be able to start gardening again; printer paper is important so I can continue with my EPP projects and so that the boys can print things for their school work or crafting as they need. And glue, well any house with crafters can never have enough glue.
I think we spent the first week finding our feet. We set up a class room area for the boys so that they have a dedicated work space and can divide their school time from the rest of their time. I am not home schooling them, their teachers are. Right from the off their teachers have been amazing. They have sent home school books, distributed workplans, set up WhatsApp groups and bit by bit our new remote schooling routine is falling into place. While I get on with my home office obligations the boys get on with their school work in their new classroom area. They do not need my supervision. My older son will contact his teacher or classmate if he needs to discuss something. My younger son is only in second class. His activities are ones that, again, need no real help from me. He has to read and colour, practice his writing and practice his basic math. He loves arts and crafts so, while his older brother is busy with his more extended timetable, he is happy to work away with all those long unused art and craft supplies that I have wanted for so long to clear out but have not had a chance to tackle.
I’m lucky in a way. I have worked in a 50% position since before I had children. I did mostly home office for the first year or two of both their lives and even now only went to the office three days a week. We are all used to my working at home. They boys are also used to having to work and entertain themselves independently as they are skills that have been encouraged both at home and at school.
After school and work we are managing to fill our days nicely. Good weather days see us out in the garden as we have finally time to do all of the gardening jobs that need doing. We also have no end of indoor jobs that have been on the to do list for far too long. All our rooms need decluttering and reorganising, so we have started to tackle those jobs. We’re are certainly not going to get it all done in a hurry, but we do a little something each day. After that there are games to be played, both online and off, there are meals to be made and enjoyed, books to be read, films to be watched, sewing, knitting, crochet and crafts galore to spend time on and so much more to be done both together and alone. The most important thing is that it is all being done at home.
We stay home. We don’t go to the park or the playground, the forest or the lake. There are no weekends in the mountains. There are no unnecessary journeys. The only really valid reason we have to leave our house at the moment is to go shopping, and even then, we do not leave, I leave. I will go shopping on my own and only once a week. The shops are all well stocked so I’ve simply switched from popping to the shops every second day or so to going once a week. If we don’t have something, we do without for a few days.
The hardest part of it all is probably the isolation. We do not have friends or family over; nor do we visit them. There is no doubting that we miss their company the most, especially as my hubbie is working in Greece and it’s just myself and the boys flying solo here at the moment. But this separation will not be forever and we are not alone in our isolation and so we will get on with it, we will socialise by phone and online. We will be there for our friends and our families when they need us and will look forward to a hopefully not too distant future when we can all be together in person again. In the meantime, we will do our best to stay safe. We will stay home for our sakes and for the sakes of all those we are trying to protect and help in the time of crisis. Our lockdown continues till April 19th at the earliest and I am sure the weeks ahead will be filled with challenges but we will take it one day at a time and do what we can to make the most of these challenging times.
Stay safe, stay home!