Good morning. How are you and your family doing? I thought I would share a bit of how we are and thoughts on all that is going on. To be perfectly honest, I find my thoughts are all over the place these days. It’s an unorganized stream of conflicting thoughts. Can anyone else relate? So yesterday I really tried to take a moment of quiet time to reflect and acknowledge all of the feelings. Today’s Monday Morning Wrap-Up may look a bit different but it’s reality right now. And I hope that you will walk away feeling encouraged and hopeful.
Without question, this emotion seems to cloud most things right now. I am fearful. We all are. It’s a scary time and one where we have zero control. What toll will this take on the economy? What will this mean for the businesses my husband and I have built? What about the millions of people who live paycheck to paycheck? What does this mean for children who fear their own homes? Perhaps that is why staying home (we were early adopters) is not hard for me. I need to feel like I am doing my part. In staying home we are praying that less people get sick therefore allowing the amazing scientists and researchers more time to do their jobs. Less pressure on the hospitals while we anxiously await a proper treatment. And the sooner this will see a positive shift.
Of course it’s heightened right now. If you have not felt the anxiety, please tell us all your secret. For me it comes and goes. I do believe it’s rooted in the lack of control and multitude of unknowns. But my job as a parent is to keep a finger on the pulse of the people living in my home. We were on “Spring Break” last week and I absolutely let the kids be on their own schedule. They needed some time to settle into this new normal and find their way. One child is highly disciplined and created an entire training schedule. The other one needs more time to process and just be. I get that. My fear is not coming out of this with children who might be behind in science and history. My fear is children who might lose their spark and love for life. That is my main priority right now. So I want to lean into this time and fill it with love and support.
@kristenanniebell – a letter from her child’s principal
While this is intended for parents of young children, I think there is a beautiful lesson for all of us in here. Tread lightly and remember the big picture.
There is an immense amount of suffering going on. Whether it be parents who have to leave children unattended or meals that are difficult to come by, it’s real and it’s happening. I encourage you to look in to your local resources to see how you might help. We are getting involved with the local food bank. I am keenly aware that some homes are not safe. We have a family in our town who has 8 people sick with the virus. One fighting for his life. This is real and it is difficult. But the fact of the matter is that it’s time for us to lift one another up. Reach out to those you love and care about. Reach out to the neighbor you don’t usually talk to and see if they need you.
So much gratitude. And then guilt for feeling grateful. Such a roller coaster. But I am grateful for this time to disconnect from the external forces that are always yanking on our time. Our family dinners, while always a focus in this house, linger so much longer. We are having movie nights and that has been something we look forward to. We are taking walks and going for hikes. Baking and cooking together. We are fortunate to have nice weather and that is something I am grateful for. When you pass neighbors on a walk their huge smile and enthusiastic, “Good morning!” feels different. It’s a shift. People appreciate the simple things in a way they didn’t before. They appreciate other humans. We are seeing things through a new lens. I love my family and I am grateful to spend this time with them. I am also grateful that my parents are not having to navigate this with mom’s disease. It might have broken me to not be able to visit my mom.
*failed craft but plenty of laughter
I am hopeful and I will not give up on that. Just this morning I heard the beautiful story of a Portland furniture company who is now making masks. The hospital, desperate for more masks, handed out sewing kits. So many people stepped up that they no longer need to hand out the kits. Starbucks announced that they will pay their employees whether they come to work or not for the next 30 days. The CEO did not want workers to choose between their job and their health. Amazing acts of kindness and heroism happening. Like with all terrible events, we have to look for the heroes. The people doing good for the good of the people.
Above all else, I think this time calls for Grace. When one of my children gives us attitude I am trying to remember all of the conflicting emotions we all have right now. It’s time to cut one another some slack. Likewise, give ourselves Grace as we navigate all of these changes. Working from home, distance learning, not leaving the house . . . it’s a lot and it’s time to breathe and know it won’t be perfect. Who cares.
I also ask for Grace when it comes to the blog. I am navigating this all for the first time, too. This is my small business and I am hopeful that I can continue to show up to bring informative and inspirational content. It won’t be perfect and I know that. But I am so grateful for all of you and I want to show up for one another. I want this to be a place of joy and encouragement. Are you in?
Time is something we can never get back. Anytime you experience loss, you are keenly aware of the gift of time. We have it now. In abundance. Feeling so grateful for these hours and days with my people. It’s up to us how we spend it.
So that’s a look into all of the feels, but what is actually working? Many of you have sent me messages asking how we are handling certain things. I am still figuring it out but will share so that you walk away with at least a few more ideas. Please keep in mind that our distance learning begins tomorrow so I have no experience with that yet (you all need to give me advice!)
*waterlogue app – turns photos into art. Fun project for kids
- Loose but consistent schedule with bedtime and wake-up times. We have early risers so not as hard to get them out of bed. Bedtime is around 9:00 PM.
- Begin the day with gratitude – find anything to be grateful for. I do this before my feet hit the floor.
- Family hour. So obviously there is A LOT of family time happening but we have adopted 8:00-9:00 PM as our movie time. The four of us get ready for bed and watch one hour of a movie. We want to end each night with the kids feeling secure and happy and us being together. We finish it up the next evening. It’s a nice way to end the day.
- Three Things – we have always been big on family dinners but now we each say three things we are grateful for from the day. It’s helping us stay positive and appreciate the little things (they are not so little after all)
- Fresh Air – time outside is key. I know many of you have cold weather and it means bundling up. Whether it’s a car ride to a trail or a walk around the neighborhood, this is paramount for us.
- Amazon Music – it’s always on (not during school time) and it keeps the house feeling calm and good.
- Clean up Crew – we are starting to enlist the crew with more and more chores. Goodness knows there is time. After dinner my kids either rinse the dishes and load the dishwasher or vacuum the kitchen and family room. We are getting everyone involved.
- Making beds – we all make our beds in the morning. And trying to keep the house picked up as much as possible. It makes spending all of our hours inside a bit more peaceful.
- Limit News Intake -while we owe it to humanity to stay educated and informed, we owe it to ourselves and our families not to spiral into the negative emotions. We check in twice a day with the news ( morning and late afternoon).
- FaceTime – the kids FaceTime with friends and their grandma. We had a virtual happy hour with Carmel and her hubby (Our Fifth House) the other night. It changed our entire day. And probably something we would not have done without this situation.
- Alone time – don’t under estimate the need for alone time. If you have a partner, maybe they can take the kids for a drive. Just an hour in the house by yourself can do a lot for your state of mind. My husband did this for me this weekend and I will do this for him, too.
art workshop from sarah nightingale
- classcentral.com – Top universities are offering free online courses. This is so cool.
- onepeloton.com – free 90 day app. You don’t nee the bike. So awesome.
- Sarah Nightingale – one of my favorite artists is offering a workshop where she walks you through doing a watercolor piece. Beautiful.
- Obé Fitness – online and on demand fitness classes. Free Trial ($29/month)
I shared on Instagram that I have not exactly hit the ground running with projects or organizing all the things. My friends and neighbors are killing it. they are seriously getting things done. On a normal day, I am crazy efficient and get so much accomplished. I am sure you feel the same way. I know it will come, but for now I have not hit my productive stride. Perhaps it’s the mental exhaustion of trying to keep life looking normal around here. Or the fatigue from all of the conflicting emotions. Many of you asked to see different parts of our home and how we organize them. Hopefully, I will get to that soon.
ONE DAY AT A TIME
One day at at time, my friends. I hope that we can all look back at this time and see that we stepped up. We rose to the challenge. To those fighting the virus right now, take care of yourself. We are all staying home to make sure this ends as quickly as possible.