Happy spring break, everyone! So excited to leave dreary, cold Indiana behind for a week in sunny, warm…

Well shit. We weren’t even supposed to go someplace warm, but it is still crappy to remain stuck at home rather than on day two of skiing in Colorado. Who knows, maybe staying home means one of us didn’t break a leg or blow out an ACL on the slopes. Regardless of what is going on here, we are glad the resorts shut down as the Keystone-Vail corridor is apparently a hotspot thanks to at least one person who traveled from Italy to that area in early March.

The past week has been very boring. The stress and excitement of the first week of being stuck at home wore off. The girls got into a routine, but that routine was not ideal. If she didn’t have an early class meeting, M was sleeping until 10 or so before she woke to get started on her assignments for the day. She was generally busy all day, each day. C and L again got most of their work done early in the week and spent the rest of the week on screens large and small. L got outside quite a bit, as the weather was decent most of the week. We played a lot of HORSE and took a few bike rides.

I did have to re-teach myself some fifth grade math – dividing fractions – as L got a little stuck and her online resources weren’t clear in what she was supposed to be doing. I had to break down and call a friend who used to be a math teacher to make sure I was on the right track. Math is my biggest worry for the two younger girls. I hate for them to get behind or I teach them something wrong and it affects how they perform in the future. I imagine teachers all over the country are trying to figure out how to avoid this, and lesson plans next fall will be adjusted to make sure kids aren’t too far behind.

We’ve been pretty hands off with their eLearning, though. We let them know we are available to help, remind them to check in with their teachers if they run into issues, and make sure assignments are being completed. They all seem to be getting everything turned in and getting full credit, so we will continue to let them operate independently when they jump back in next week.

Last Wednesday was an absolutely glorious day. It was in the upper 60s, the skies were clear, the winds were calm. Our street was a constant stream of dog walkers, runners, and bikers. We adjusted our meal plan for the week to throw some burgers on the grill, as it was the perfect grilling day. While we were outside we could smell other people’s grills and hear folks playing music outside. In the evening there were fireworks scattered about. It was an impromptu celebration of the beautiful weather and an opportunity it get outside after just over a week of most of the world staying inside.[1]

In these strange times people are doing strange things. For example, over the weekend the Indy radio station that plays Christmas music between Thanksgiving and Christmas pulled out all those tunes from Friday evening through last night. Even I, the “Christmas Music Must Only Be Played During the Holidays” zealot tuned in for a bit. I felt weird doing it, not because it was out of season, but because I didn’t know how it made me feel. Was this a momentary adjustment to bring some joy to a grim time? Or was it a sign that the end of the world was nigh and we might as well enjoy things we may never get a chance to enjoy again?

It felt especially weird to listen to the station Saturday. We had the windows open to enjoy the near–80 degree weather, there were thunderstorm watches and warnings, and late in the evening we had a torrential downpour that flooded our yard. It didn’t exactly look a lot like Christmas.

I made a grocery run early Sunday. It was designed to be a small, quick trip so I went to the grocery store around the corner. I had been there two weeks earlier and found it was very much picked over. Things seem to have stabilized, though, as I was able to get just about everything on my list plus a number of additions I made on the fly.

It is a sign of the times that you leave a grocery store with an immense feeling of relief if you get 90% of what you needed.

Normally we run our pantry and fridge/freezer pretty tight. I will shop early each week and plan on 3–4 dinner ideas, knowing we’ll squeeze in a leftover night, likely a dinner out, maybe a “cereal for dinner” night, and then figure out a plan for the weekend when Friday rolls around.

Now I keep a very detailed list of how many dinner options we have. Where we are normally good for a few nights, and I often have to run out to grab a few things multiple times during the week, I currently have us set up to get through at least a week, likely closer to two. Our freezer is jam-packed and I’m making plans to have some electrical work done to add a freezer to the basement once this is over. I’m constantly checking the list to assure myself that I don’t need to venture out to a store again for a few days.

It is these little obsessions that give you an anchor in these uncertain times.

  1. Test note  ↩