When quarantine first started, there was a new workload to adjust to: the near-constant cooking, the deep spring/quarantine cleaning and overseeing my kids' remote learning. The addition of these chores was not overwhelming because along with it came the subtraction of so much: sports, play dates, my second seasonal job as a school tour guide, sports, being able to go anywhere, school events, work events and, of course, sports.
As a matter of fact, after a few weeks there were a few times that I almost felt bored (and quickly had to remind myself that I always tell the kids that only boring people get bored.) But then about two weeks ago I found myself saying things like, "I'm sorry it's taken me so long to get back in touch. Somehow I've felt busy lately . . . and busy felt sort of nice, like maybe things were normal again."
So what have I been doing that makes me feel busy if it's not rushing my kids through their homework so I can shove some dinner down their throats and get them to track practice on time and figure out what they'll have for second dinner when they come home famished?
1. Virtual Exhibits: The Museum I work for has been closed to the public but I'm still working part time. I've actually been getting a ton done that I never usually have time to get to. Honestly, it's been a great time for the Museum itself even though I haven't been able to have visitors. I still want to stay connected to the public and so have been sharing virtual exhibits. The latest one was a brief history of baking bread using artifacts from the collection.
2. Video Tour: The weather was terrible this spring and I know if I was giving school tours I would have been miserable about how cold and wet it was . . . but I still missed it. The kids always ask amazing questions and there's always the sweetie that wants to be right next to me the whole time.
A friend asked if I'd consider doing a quick virtual tour for her son's class and in exchange she'd make a donation. I jumped at the chance and am pretty pleased with how my Virtual Tour of the Bunker Hill Schoolhouse turned out.
3. Speaking of videos, we've made a few. The first (which seems like such a long time ago now) was a little something I called "Not in Sicily." I had seen a video online of Sicilian neighbors playing music on their balconies. My kids were all practicing their instruments in their rooms so I walked around the house filming them.
Then we filmed a "Quarantine Teen" (parody of Billy Ocean's Caribbean Queen) music video for a good friend's 13th birthday. After I specifically requested it, the kids did follow through (thanks to my oldest daughter) and film a Treat Your Mother Right video for me for Mother's Day. Lastly, we made a collaborative music video with friends in which they all filmed about thirty seconds at home and then I spliced them all together.
|My boys are sort of over my video-making ideas that involve them but in this one all they had to do was pelt me with balls while I was walking by in a nice dress so they were all in.|
4. Gardening, finally! When your nine-year-old is horrified by how dirty your feet are in the evening . . . to me, that's the sign of a great day.
5. Helping others. I have always derived joy out of volunteerism but don't always have the time to do it as much as I'd like to. The current time on my hands along with an increased need has provided ample opportunities to help out both on an individual basis (errands for folks who can't go out right now) or on a larger scale (now organizing my second donation drive for the food pantry).
A friend that I've been assisting said something about me putting on my superhero cape to help her so the next time I was able to, I was sure to do just that: