Scenes from Quarantine {week six}

Well, warmer weather is here. The kids went in the pool for the first time this year...even if it was far too cold for me. I put my feet in and it was freezing. The warmer weather also means more ice cream and other cold treats. And no one is saying no to that.

Connor and Isla started doing twice weekly video calls with their teachers. They love these calls. I feel for the teachers though and having all that chaos coming at them at one time! Connor held up Willa for his class to see. And Isla shared our bearded dragon with her whole class. The kinks with school seem to be getting worked out and all is going much smoother.

I started feeling stir crazy. Like EXTREMELY stir crazy one day. I guess only going to Winco twice in a month plus and nowhere else finally got to me. I just wanted out. To go somewhere. For the most part, I am totally fine being at home. But sometimes, I just want to do something. We did get Connor a new/bigger bike and have gone on several family bike rides. So, that's been nice.

Every time someone comes to my porch and talks to me from a distance feels life-giving. That sounds so cheesy. But the human interaction outside of my children really is nice. I dropped some hand me downs off on a friend's porch and stood at my car talking to her for half an hour...while the kids went crazy in the car, haha. But it was totally worth it and nice to have that face to face (from a distance) adult conversation for a bit. Turns out this introvert really enjoys seeing people in the flesh from time to time!

It's weird though, everyone keeping their distance. People being sort of friendly, sort of standoff-ish. A post man delivered a package for someone else to our house, so when he came back to get in his truck, I ran it out to him. You could tell he really didn't want me getting close. I almost offered to toss the package to him. It was just another reminder of how much things have changed over the past several weeks.

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A Glimpse Into the Life of Willa

This is Willa at 14 months old.

Willa can now climb up onto furniture, so of course it is her favorite place to be. She has also managed to fall off of said furniture she can now climb up on. 

The car she is playing with has buttons that make noise. All the cars that make noise are her current favorites. She loves pressing the buttons over and over and has such an accomplished look on her face each time she does. 

Notice no bow in her hair. She rips them out as soon as I put them in these days. I even try to distract her for a minute after doing so, but she still generally rips them out right away. 

Notice the adorable onesie peeking out that is covered in strawberries. When I bought it, I imagined her wearing it when we went to pick strawberries somewhere. Now I wonder if we will ever leave the house again...slight exaggeration, but you get the point. 

Some of the things you can't see is Willa now walks everywhere. No more crawling for her. She also screams to communicate, which is...loud. The screams sound the same for happy and sad, good and bad, wanting something, etc. 

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Scenes from Quarantine {week five}

I kind of can't believe we are here...five weeks, FIVE WEEKS, of staying home. I think of where the world was, where I was, five weeks ago. I remember having talks with the kids teachers, saying "until next time". Hoping schools would be open again for the oh-so-sweet preschool Mother's Day tea that I have been looking forward to for months. I remember spending my last day I sent the kids to school running to Target and stocking up on snacks and such (that was the last time I was there) and to the library to grab a bunch of books. I wish I had thought to take a last picture of the kids with their teachers. Besides that, I really just wish I drove around and gave my friends really long and awkward hugs.

So distance learning Connor, he can do it all on his own, easily. And it doesn't take him long. Isla, on the other hand, needs help switching among the approximately 35 programs they use about every 60 seconds. So that's going about as smooth as you can imagine. And she has way more work than Connor. Also fun. I did decide to look up Go Noodle on you tube this past week for the kids and that is actually fun. The kids love it. They ask to do several videos at one time and it helps to get their wiggles out.

We actually made it two weeks between grocery trips and I found that oddly satisfying. Sure, every meal is not Pinterest worthy, but they are good...or at least decent, haha! I also discovered we go through way more peanut butter than I would ever think.

You know the friends episode where they talk about how there is no such thing as a selfless good deed? Well, I have decided to do a couple good deeds a week to boost the joy level in myself and others. These aren't big things necessarily. It's things like sending someone a note in the mail or leaving a bottle of wine on their porch. Just a little something-something to boost morale.

Speaking of boosting morale. Instead of making a daily list of things to do (which I normally do and LOVE...nerd, I know) I have switched to a list of things I would like to accomplish over the week. It's a shift in perspective, but allows me to get things done I have been wanting to do, but also not stick to a rigid schedule. I have done things like finish painting the laundry room (I only started in September!), painting the attic door in the girls room, dropping off hand-me-downs to someone, taking a load of stuff to be donated. Just some ways to make me feel productive. Also, all those things did not happen in one week!

In case you care to see more specifics of what we got up to this week - easter (technically the end of week four) and Connor and I baked bread

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Yes, easter looked different this year. But, we were the people that booked a camping trip last year on easter not realizing it was easter. Haha! So it's not like we are so stooped in tradition that it bothers us. It was more of a slow and enjoyable day. 

We all ate breakfast together and the kids got their easter baskets. Then we all watched church on the tv. We played legos while church was going. Then, it was time for the backyard egg hunt. At first, I was going to make each kid get a certain number of eggs, but I decided to just let them go for it and all worked out. Sure, Willa ended up with two eggs. But she was sure proud of those two eggs! And toward the end, I helped Callum find some of the eggs, as the older two had a bunch more than him. After that, we had lunch, then went for a walk in our neighborhood. 

Next, we cruised by Ian's parents house for a social distancing egg hunt in the front yard. His parents watched as the kids hunted for eggs, then we left and headed for home...where we ate a traditional easter meal of orange chicken, haha! 

All it all, it was a really enjoyable, slow paced and drama free day. Quite enjoyable in fact. 

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That Time We Made Bread

I'm not a baker. I'll just level with you. I love to cook, but baking, not so much. But I saw this recipe that my amazing baker friend (and author!!!) posted. It seemed "easy enough". That is, until I started it, haha! It really isn't difficult. I shouldn't say that. I guess I just didn't realize how many steps there are to making bread. And just how much the dough has to be left. But not for too long. We accidentally let ours rise for far too long there at the end. We prepared it, then let it sit while we went to a birthday parade and boy oh boy did it get ginormous. That didn't affect the flavor at all though. And I have to say, I felt rather accomplished with Connor and I for doing this. And I feel like our friend Bonnie would be proud because we weighed out all the ingredients instead of measuring...even if all we had was a salt grinder and had to grind up 20 grams of salt. Connor and I had to take turns with the salt grinder for all that salt! And doing something like this with only one kid that can do most the steps by himself is also pretty dang awesome. 

Just look at that HUGE loaf! I braided it because we don't have any loaf pans. I accidentally let it sit for twice as long as it needed and it certainly got big. 

In case you missed it, here is the link to Alchemy Bread's recipe for kindergarten honey wheat bread.

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Scenes from Quarantine {week four}

The news is an interesting thing to read right now. So many opinions flying about and no one really knows the future. Maybe this will last a few more weeks, maybe months, maybe years...please God, NO, not years!!! My news loving self still isn't reading news like I used to. So much of it seems subjective these days and I am just not into that. 

Two months ago, I was thinking about life after busy season. Then a bomb was dropped in our life, all our lives. I've heard my four year old say "coronavirus" in the most adorable voice, yet also cry about not getting to go to the playground or see his grandparents. My ten year old asked to listen to a podcast on the virus and my eight year old says she misses school and her friends. I really enjoy not having to set an alarm in the morning. Many days hum along easily, while some have siblings fighting all day, leaving me wanting to pull out my hair. 

This season isn't what I expected. It isn't what any of us have expected. But that doesn't mean there isn't good in it. Willa has pretty much perfected walking. The kids actually play together well a lot of the time (but when they don't...oh man!). Ian is working from home and gets to eat dinner with us every night, something that doesn't happen during a normal busy season. I've begun taking more pictures of our daily life and I like that. Of course that doesn't mean there aren't real challenges either. Life certainly isn't normal. Learning to breathe calmly behind a mask while grocery shopping can be counted as one of those not normal things. I literally felt like I was suffocating for the first couple minutes before I calmed down. 

I now know two people personally who have tested positive for the virus and many that suspected to have it. Neither live right by me. Both say it's the most sick they have ever been and that it was very scary for several days. Going out a degree, I know of two people that have been on a ventilator for it and one person that died. But honestly, what scares me the most, is people I know that aren't taking it seriously at all. Even if they don't die from it, they can keep the spread going and that bothers me. 

If you care to see my thoughts and perspectives change over the weeks - my first post about covid-19, week one, week two and week three.

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A Walk in the Rain

We went for a walk in the rain a few days ago for several reasons. One is, I love the rain and I love being out in the rain and I figured the kids would too. Spoiler alert, they did! But I also went out then because I figured no one would be out. And I was correct. We live right by this amazing walking/biking path. But I have had to avoid it because during social distancing, it has been covered in people and that, my friends, is not social distancing. I saw this funny meme the other day saying it's a good thing the virus doesn't travel sideways. Seriously though. People walk right next to each other, not even thinking about six feet. Oh well. Let me get off my soap box.

Rain. I love the rain. Kids love puddles. While walking, it turned into a significant downpour and we decided to turn back toward home. Mostly because I didn't want to get super far from the house in the pouring rain and have a kid meltdown about it. Anyway, the walk home took a long time, as the kids played in the puddles. Isla jumped in every puddle she saw, filling her boots and soaking herself. Callum rode his trike through them. Willa slept in her stroller the whole time, haha! Both Callum and Isla had to be drug home, as they didn't want to stop playing. But, as any good play in the rain sesh goes, it ended with warm showers and comfy clothes.

We haven't got much rain this year and this fun walk in the rain made me sad that we didn't. Rain just bring the best smells, the coziest of the cozys and fun play times...also, it keeps California out of a drought.

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