Corona Diaries 2020

The Corona Diaries Week 10 - Still Here I Guess


Remember when I started this series on a daily basis? Oh those were sweet naive days of yore. This past week was all about "finishing strong" for Harper for school. Starting last week it was four more weeks of school and I had gotten a bit lax about her school work. Giving up too easily. It was a reminder that it could be so easy to be a shitty parent. Sure, you can play minecraft any time. Sure, you can watch tv all you want. But that's not me. So I worked harder last week (and will for three more weeks) to help Harper get her work done throughout the day with plenty of breaks and fun time.

On Monday it rained. It was heaven. I feel like that will be the last rain I see for another eight months. I don't love LA for this.

Kurt brought home lovely peonies from Trader Joe's this week. My favorite flowers!

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The rain soothed my soul and also rinsed off the old sidewalk chalk course. Time for a new one! I need new chalk the next time I do this as I prefer not to scrape my knuckles on the rough sidewalk again. Actually creating the thing is tiring! Also I'm out of shape for sidewalk chalk art.



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I love hearing random people do the course, laughing and playing. It makes me happy.

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One afternoon Harper was running around with this butterfly cage, using it as a net, chashing butterflies. AND SHE CAUGHT ONE! She kept it inside for a few hours, then took it back outside and let it go. She did "play" with it a few times so I hope it wasn't dead...

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My lovely thank you gift from Jenny was a tiny ceramic dish, soil and strawberry seeds. I planted it, dubious about growing strawberry plants in such a tiny spot but lo and behold! Wee little strawberry shoots! I'm going to transplant them later into a planter. Fingers crossed.
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On a walk in the neighborhood I found these lovelies growing along someone's hellstrip. I believe they will let them bloom, which is so cool.
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Also on that walk I saw this back entry way to a house (in an alley) and am keeping it handy for our garage conversion ideas.
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Then one afternoon I was relaxing on the front patio and this...um...person? Alien? Lizard Man? walked by.
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Not quite so much baking this week. Had to slow my roll on that action.

Harper had a very fancy lunch one day. She likes her dogs naked.

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I baked focaccia and it came out yummy. Then I learned that Kurt doesn't particularly like focaccia and Harper seems meh on it too. FINE.
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I tried my hand at soda bread and made 2 errors - not cutting the top deep enough to open up all the way and baking it just a little too long. It was delicious though, with butter and jammmmmmm...mmmmmm. So easy to make, I will make it again.
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For absolutely no reason I bought a shortbread pan. No good can come of it.

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Mr. Biscuit continues to grow. He's suddenly taken a liking to my desk chair when I stand up. And he's starting to get some outside time in Kurt's arms. We are prepping to have him try and be outside soon. Willoughby goes out and mostly sticks to the backyard, so we are hoping Biscuit does the same. But he still has his teenage boy cat brain so it's kind of a crap shoot.

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I got some new sunglasses.

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We started a new puzzle. Of the cats. Kurt did 99.9% of this puzzle.
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Harper a lot of art this week. She and Kurt logged onto the Mo Willems Lunch Doodles channel. Two of my all time favorites are these:
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Harper also helped me do a birthday card for Uncle Peter.

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And one morning I asked her to write a letter to someone before playing minecraft. She wrote to Kurt and made this GENIUS picture of them playing their favorite game "throw and catch". They play in Harper's room with a big soft ball but manage to destroy the room. Apparently Kurt's glasses get knocked off some times and Harper laughs and laughs. (click for bigger image.)

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She also painted this. And used up aaaaalllllll the glitter paint in the process. Hmmm.

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We had an in-real-life visit with our friend Betty, a nice long chat and then she read "Horton Hears A Who" to Harper.
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It was a week. I have a lot of shit to work through about myself.

 

 


The Corona Diaries Week 9 - Mother's Day And Another Week

Another week in the books. Another week of uncertainty and confusion. Another week of constantly having to remind myself that this feeling of calm is always just the eye of the hurricane. And the storm is close by on all sides. And the storm isn't going to end for a long long time. Hard to balance. Hard to not feel seasick. Thankfully we have each other and friends and family nearby on the phone/text/video chat. Not the same as "real life" but this is real life.

There was some good news for a couple of friends who - in the middle of a pandemic! - found really great jobs. I am so so so pleased for them. They had both been looking for a while and this week it happened for them. A ray of shining light.

Last Sunday was Mother's Day and I was well taken care of. Harper wrote me this darling card. I asked Kurt if he helped her with it at all and he said no, 100% her. The phonetic spellings just slay me. Harper got me a box of chocolate and Kurt got me a box of nice goodies - tea and a candle and some sweet plants to grow. Then there was a big cookbook of things to BAKE! I lounged around in bed, reading the cookbook, drinking coffee, looking out the window. Later I watched Belgravia because who doesn't want a soapy British tv show on Mother's Day? It was a lovely day and to have Harper as a daughter, how could I get any luckier? She's a star.

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There was more baking and more cooking this week. I tried a recipe from the big new book: Lemon Poppyseed Raspberry Muffins.

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And you know what? They were kinda meh. Not enough lemon. Not enough poppyseed and why didn't I remember that raspberries have no flavor and are just a bit of mush in a muffin? Oh well. I gave half to our elderly neighbors. I hope they liked them.

I baked two more loaves of bread. One for us and one for friends (plus a dozen donut muffins). Our friends had a cat that suddenly died one morning last week. Only five years old, no health problems. Poor thing.

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Harper and I dropped off some groceries to a friend in West Hollywood and then picked up an essential lunch.
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I discovered love is everywhere if you just look. My coffee and mayonnaise reminded me I'm loved.
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I whipped up what I thought might be an alfredo-y sauce for pasta one night - starting with a basic bechemel. I put some garlic and salt in it plus lots of parmesan, but man oh man it was the blandest, whitest pasta ever created. Looks nice on the plate. But looks aren't everything.
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Yesterday I harvested more beans from the garden and made a carbonara which was VERY tasty. Everyone cleaned their plates. The beans grow like WEEDS so there will be plenty more where that came from.
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The cats are very busy. Willoughby would like more chicken please. NOW.

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Biscuit is such a boy kitten.
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I love the death glare Willoughby gives in the background up there.

Biscuit loves supermarket day.
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Biscuit and his tail.
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The outdoors are nice. I discovered this mini field of basil dreams on a walk. Clearly I'd not been down this block before and was startled at the amazing smell and vivid colors.

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Then to my favorite gardenia bush which seems to bloom all year long.

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Friday night we had a get together in real life with Brian. So nice to visit IRL! We all kept our distance and had a really nice time.
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Had to try some wacky hair color fun. Luckily it was just a test for a one time deal.

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Harper likes to write letters from time to time.
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I like to catch her in every day things. Egg sammich and TinTin for lunch. (God I hate TinTin.)

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She really got into trimming the wisteria bush. Like she CLEANED IT OFF. I hope it recovers.
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My hair is long enough for braids now. Something else to do with it.
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Doing the sidewalk chalk fun run. (It's needs a refresh. There is rain in the forecast for tomorrow (Monday) which would help wash away the old chalk. I'll believe rain when I see it.)
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New scrunchies from Grace.
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Pool abstract. Perhaps a take on Hockney? Not really.
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We keep ourselves entertained. Harper has enjoyed watching Kipo And The Age of Wonderbeasts as well as all five seasons of She-Ra. She's been liking The Hollow as well. Kurt and I watched the last season of Better Call Saul and then started on Killing Eve. Season 3 will end soon then we'll have to find another show to start. There is plenty, no doubt, but we have one tv so it has to be teamwork. Entertainment is oh so important these days.

I'm tired.

And I have it easy.


The Corona Diaries Week 8 - We're Here and I'm Furious

Oooh I got so angry this week. Thursday morning to be exact. I was frustrated at the situation we are in, but more than that I was so angry at our stupid stupid government for being selfish and lame and blind and selfish and did I say selfish? It didn't have to be this bad. This many people didn't have to die. We could have all rallied around a common "enemy" and worked together to make the best of a bad situation. Help people financially. But no. Nope. Not going to happen. I was going to do some exercise, some yoga to try and calm my mind but after about 10 minutes I just said "FUCK IT" and leaned into being angry and talking it out with Kurt.

In between the anger, I cooked. I baked. I made good things to eat. Did it dispel the anger? No. But didn't hurt one bit.

Well - I'll be honest and say I baked whole wheat banana bread and alas, underbaked it by a lot. I have now learned a lesson about a) ceramic bread pans and b) short toothpicks. I'll try this again because a) part of if it tasted good, b) I have lots of whole wheat flour to use and c) there are always bananas turning to the dark side.

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In better news! Chocolate chip cookies were baked. But it seems they are not the most popular in the house. I gave a bunch to the neighbors as well as to the friends I sewed masks for.
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Last Sunday breakfast.
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Kurt got hot dogs on his Trader Joe's run and as it was summer weather, we had hot dogs for lunch two days in a row outside on the deck.
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We bartered a little for some YUMMY bread from Debra. That plus perfect avocados, some mayo and salt made for the BEST breakfast/snack/lunch/whatever/whenever it was that I ate it.
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As I mentioned in last week's post, I bought new bread pans but Kurt had bought a lot of bread. But this week I launched into bread making with a vengeance. (inspired by Grace.) I ended up baking three loaves of Japanese Milk Bread. It is SUPER easy, just takes a bit of time - all that rising to make it so FLUFFY!

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Of course it makes me think of Minions saying "butt" over and over and laughing.


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Is that enough bread porn for you?

It was a warm week with lots of pool time for Harper again. There were gorgeous flowers that Kurt bought on his shopping run - one for me and one for Harper.

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Gorgeous flowers outside in our garden too. The front garden is something I'm so grateful for. So many pretty flowers right now.


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And room to play.
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Willoughby likes to climb trees.
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"Mama, I found a slug and named him Richard."
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We helped friends a few blocks away celebrate their son's 18th birthday with distancing chalk art!
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I ended one of my days with a G&T on the veranda and then harvested some beans.
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The cats are our constant companions. And thank goodness for their nuttiness. Here Mr. Biscuit listens to John Oliver's segment on cats.

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Here Mr. Biscuit explores my desk. Hmmm.

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They often help with the puzzle.
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Then they got a new toy, thanks to our good friend Tom! You fold it up and put treats in it and the cats have to fish the treats out. Mr. Biscuit is not the brightest cat on the block (He's still technically a kitten - all 12 pounds of him) but Willoughby got it instantly and now pushes the box all over the kitchen getting all the treats out.
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MY TREATS!!!!
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Harper and I share an office now. (We have this whole time.) She had a project to test what kinds of things melt and they used hot water and candy. She enjoyed this experiment very much, eating the evidence after recording her findings.

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It was teacher appreciation week and Harper made cards for both her teachers.
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The tape got decorated, which I love.
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I made more masks and got a very very sweet thank you gift in return.

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I'm not ashamed to tell you I'm reading this fabulous romance novel. I have a stack of books ready to read and couldn't bring myself to read them. Luckily I had thought ahead to a time when I might need pure ridiculous escapism and also have a few of these babies standing by. It's been great, I have to say.

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And lo and behold, I gave Kurt a haircut. But with a HUGE assist from our stylist and a good facetime connection! I can't wait until she can do it for real. Too stressful!
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Another week down. Many many many more to go. I keep focusing on the little things, the important things. I know we'll be fine. We are lucky that way. The future is a mystery (it always has been) and we can't control a lot of it. My anger will come and go, as will grief and sadness and frustration. Then we'll have beautiful days filled with flowers and sweets and we'll be distracted for a while.


The Corona Diaries Week 7 - Whatever

Well. Week seven. Here we are. Whatever. Please see my previous post about how I'm feeling about it all.

I mean, I'm feeling A LOT but it comes down to "not much I can do about it" and "the only way out is through" and "whatever".

The cats are having a good time I guess. Getting along better a little every day. Mr. Biscuit is a box cat through and through. Willoughby is not. Biscuit is a long cat. Willoughby is not.

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There were projects around the house (aside from mask making which continues from time to time.)

We made a "no-sew" blanket which was SO TEDIOUS, but once it was done, it's cute and Harper loves it. But did I take a picture of finished blanket? No. Because once it was done, I was done. (Biscuit helped.) We have more fleece to make a smaller one, but I'll be saving that for later......much much later.

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This fleece (and other other fleece in waiting) was part of a larger order of cotton materials that took forever to get here. But now I finally have fabric that is not just green apple and tangerine.

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There were food projects. Lovely blueberry muffins.

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Deviled eggs - YUM.

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Lunches can be interesting. Harper likes this new sandwich she invented: bread, avocado, bread, fried egg. I chose to have mine open-faced.
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I bought new bread pans to make bread. I haven't started yet as Kurt brought home a LOT of bread from TJ's on his Monday shopping trip.
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And we had a mad hankering for sushi as it's something we get every couple weeks. Also we started playing Overcooked 2 on the playstation and there are sushi levels. So we got some sushi and it was so refreshing! It made me think of when we were in Bath in 2018 and it was SO HOT. We got there, unpacked and started walking around and at about dinner time we found an air conditioned, conveyor belt sushi place and OMG it was heaven. (I just looked back at my blog from 2018 and wow, I didn't blog at all about England while I was there. I guess it was mostly instagram, but still. Wow.)

Anyway - sushi yum.
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There is the toilet paper hilarity. I was looking for toilet paper online a few weeks ago and could only easily find industrial sized rolls at Staples. Kurt and I laughed about getting it and let it go because how silly would it be? Then when it seemed more challenging to find some in our brief hunting/gathering excursions, I thought, why not? So we did it! OMG. It's not high quality but it will last a long while! I bought it 3/4 for practical reasons and 1/4 for a funny story. God I need funny stories these days.

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Our puzzles arrived from the post office gift store and we put the 500 piece one together. That was easy and fun. There is a 1000 piece puzzle standing by and also two more on loan from friends. I'm not in a rush to do another quite yet, but do like the quiet time of brainlessness. We cleaned out some random boxes and found these wooden fish my mom got us for christmas. No reason not to put them up. So to the underwater themed area at our front door they went. (Starfish thanks to Grace!)

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As ever, an important thing to do is keep physically active. I've gone back to online yoga classes three times a week. It's hard, but I'm showing up for myself. It was still hot so we had more pool time. Then there was some Beat Saber fun for us all and a round of gymnastics outside one afternoon. Harper had the 8 year old audacity to tell me my leaps were not very good. Thanks dear daughter. Way to make your fat old mom feel good.

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Kurt and I watch tv at night after Harper goes to bed. That's the only time, really, that we watch grown up tv. (We only have the one tv.) So we have started watching Killing Eve and that has been really nice distracting entertainment. We haven't watched much in the way of tv news as it's all just too much. Newspaper headlines are plenty for me.

We are all in the same storm, but not all in the same boat. I'm grateful every day for our boat.

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This New Normal Is Temporary

IMG_2661We are in week 7 of sheltering at home. We are very privileged to have all we have. I am not working right now and I have the luxury not to panic about it. Kurt is in between gigs so we have time to spend helping Harper with distance learning and to cook and to play.

We have adjusted pretty well. We have a weekly routine that works great for now. School ("school") is a big help in that it provides structure for the week, something to focus on for an hour here or there during each weekday. There is a grocery shopping routine and we've gotten used to not just popping out for one or two things like before. Occasionally we drive somewhere to have take-out food put in the backseat of our car by a masked server.

So far so good. If we had to do this for six more months, we could. I feel really good about how we are doing. Dare I say comfortable. Okay, well, "comfortable" isn't the right word. More like "less panicked."

But when I feel good and relaxed about how we've done so far, then comes the creeping dread of what comes next.

Because all of this is temporary. Things will change. The city will slowly begin to open up in various ways and we'll be able to do more things. It will be a new phase of this Covid life. A new New Normal we'll have to get used to.

But then what? How is that new phase going to be? What will it look and feel like? How different will it be? How will we adjust? And that new phase will also be temporary. Then we'll have to get used to something new again. Nothing is going to be the same.

It's a little bit like when a baby is born and each new phase brings on minor panic. You make it through the infancy stage and settle into months 5,6, 7 and 8. Cute smiley happy baby sitting up and playing, you are feeling pretty good about how you are doing as a new parent. Then boom! They can crawl and it's a whole new ballgame. But you settle in and it gets easier and you relax, feel confident. Then teeth with new moods and fussiness and it's different, but then you settle in and relax. Then walking, etc etc etc. You have a whole new life and nothing is going to be the same.

You see what I mean.

I can be as "less panicked" as I am, feeling strong in our new life. I could do this for a year. It would really really suck on a lot of levels, but I'm ready. I could do it. But it's all going to change.

That's what keeps me off balance and I don't like it.


The Corona Diaries Week 6 - Forgetfulness

My sister Jen died on April 17, 2008. April 17 is a tough day and the beginning of April is usually filled with dreadful anticipation. Often the anticipation is worse than the actual day.

This year I 100% forgot.

I was talking to my niece (Jen's daughter) and she mentioned going to the cemetery and then it clicked. Wow. I was really stunned at how I totally didn't remember. And some might say "Maybe of all the days, that one is okay to forget." Yes, but. It's a significant day in my life, in all my family's lives. Astonishing to forget.

These are fucked up times. There. I said it.

Sorry Jen. It's not like I forgot you. I think of you all the time.

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Do you have zoom fatique? I do. And I don't even have a job that I need zoom for. But then someone emails and asks for a virtual group get together and I can't say no. All my college housemates? Hell yes. We did that yesterday and it was really nice. LA, Northern California, Portland and Philly were represented. It's amazing how we could have done this years ago, but didn't. Maybe this is a silver lining? Seeing old friends, if only online? It was good.

And yet. How insane that all my self-consciousness, dare I say my self-loathing bubbled up. They must be judging me, how I look, how I am, stupid stuff I say. Are they? Of course they aren't. They are some of the kindest, funniest, most generous people I know. I should take a lesson from them and turn it inward.

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It was hot this week in LA, in the 80's. Time for blow up pool afternoons. And popsicles.

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Our friend Tom dropped off rocket pop molds for us on Friday night and Kurt and Harper went right to work freezing up some juice.

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We bought these Melona bars right before the lock down at Mitsuwa. Thank goodness because they are YUMMY. Look for them if you go to Costco.

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We had other food fun this week too. Baked more cookies:

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Then baked THE BEST MUFFINS EVER! These are "donut muffins" from the King Arthur Flour website. They taste like cake donuts! They are so tasty and fulfill any donut craving you might have. I'm going to have to not make these every day week.

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Serving suggestion:
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Kurt made his bomb-ass grilled cheese sammiches again.
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Harper has gotten to the Wine-Glass-As-Juice-Cup stage in life.

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Some mornings her hot chocolate game is lit.
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Before the heat wave we had an indoor dinner picnic. I absolutely have no recollection what we ate (see forgetfulness above). But there were paper plates. (Using them up is nice.)

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I am working on eating healthy sometimes.
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Speaking of healthy OMG I DID YOGA FOUR TIMES LAST WEEK! I took the one hour online class through the studio I had been going to earlier in the year. I'm so glad I restarted and will make it happen some more this week. Biscuit joined one day. And one other day I was logging in and Harper was with me. The teacher said, "Hi! Who is that?" I said, "My daughter Harper." "Oh hi! Are you going to join us for yoga, Harper?" I said, "NOOOOOOO THIS IS MY TIME!" (but much nicer).

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I saw an idea online for a sidewalk physical fun course so I made one for Harper. The funnest thing for me is seeing random people in our neighborhood doing it too!

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I happened to be out watering plants when a mom and son came by, hopping. She had on the BEST (non pandemic related) t-shirt I've seen in a while. She said it was for her 40th birthday.

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We work in some art every week and our favorites are nature related. Someone cut this tree down in our neighborhood and Harper and I walked to it to take pictures and then her assignment was to draw it. I think she nailed it!
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And we keep busy in random ways. I marched two blocks down to sit with a friend in their front yard. Brought my own chair, snack and cocktail. It was really nice and felt refreshing to speak to someone IN REAL LIFE.

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We packed up our 2nd car and stowed it under a shiny cover. "Planned Non-Operation" indeed.

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I was tidying up my desk area/office and these are on my window sill. I've never smoked but always love old ashtrays. You know the Hana Maui one is old because it says "Hawaiian Islands". I found that one at a swap meat years ago. The La Concha one I swiped when we stayed there once in the late 80s or very early 90s. It was a dump but oh the architecture out front. It no longer exists.

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I worked on my masks. Finally got some new fabric I ordered a while back. Trying new styles and types. Got new supplies as well. The better sewing machine is working out great so far. (fingers crossed.)

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We are supporting the US post office by buying lots of stamps and they had these puzzles there too, so boom! New puzzles to do.

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The ever popular Uno. Harper gets to do math, so it's educational to boot.
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Making bird feeders.
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Speaking of bird feeders - we put up two outside our office window (Harper and I share an office now) and the squirrels are bamboozled. It's fun.

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The cats are doing fine. Willoughby enjoyed fresh dug dirt time and Biscuit learned about bubbles. (Biscuit isn't allowed outside yet, still too young and dumb.)

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Finally last night, Harper wanted to camp in the living room. She's wanted to for weeks. So Kurt dragged out two twin mattresses and we watched Tangled and ate popcorn, etc. Time to sleep and I was out like a light (it's my super power). Harper couldn't sleep and wanted to go back to her room, so we undid it all and all slept in our own beds. But the moving watching part was fun.

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The Corona Diaries Week 5 - The End Of The Beginning

I made a joke a few years ago about Harper going to college. The joke being along the lines of "if there even is such a thing as college by then." Well. This pandemic is making that joke real. More immedately for college aged kids now, but after the fallout of this virus, what will college look like in ten years? What will everything look like in ten years?

Luckily I'm still a great sleeper so these thoughts don't keep me up at night. But I think about them a lot. I also think about even just the coming school year. If there is no vaccine for another year or two and there are also no solid treatments for Covid-19, do we send Harper back to school in the fall? Doubtful. But we don't have to think about that now.

This past week was a busy one with a heavier school load. But not so heavy that we couldn't easily manage without anyone going nuts. Also there were two assignments that got skipped. Oh well!

I continued my sewing project but made an important discovery. You get what you pay for. I thought a nice inexpensive sewing machine would be fine for sewing masks. Masks are so simple. Alas, the cheap machine couldn't keep up. So it took a while to find a better machine that a) is affordable and b) in stock. I had a great chat on the phone with a dude from a SoCal sewing store and within 24 hours the new machine arrived! So I'm back to sewing for us and for a friend who works in a medical office and the admin staff needs masks.

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Food in many shapes and types and sizes keeps us busy. I planted a garden and am now regrowing stuff on our window sill. I'm going to plant the celery in the garden today (this was from last weekend and it's already gotten much bigger.) The lettuce and green onion will stay on the sill.

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What? It was a steal.
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Harper and I made cookies. We have a bunch of leftover dough, so we'll make more.

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Harper's breakfast one morning. I don't think she noticed what the mug actually says. LOL

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We picked up dinner from one of our favorite restaurants on Friday night. Nickel Diner in downtown LA. It was nice to drive a bit and see the city from afar and then have yummy dinner.

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Last night I baked a spur of the minute cake! But my cocoa powder might have been off or did I forget the sugar? It tasted not great. Sad face.

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We bought some sprinkles.

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Mr. Biscuit is getting a LOT of attention. Plus he's just getting longer.

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Harper had a party.

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Harper also tried filters on my phone/camera. I kinda dig what she did with the cats.

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This is what our last week's shopping list looked like.

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Kurt is teaching Harper how to play volleyball. She likes it a lot.

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She also enjoys her journal and writes in it a couple times a week. I promise not to pry, but love seeing what she writes. And she often shares.

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Here's to another week of staying safe and feeling lucky for all we have.

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Corona Diaires - Easter Fun During A Pandemic

Easter is not a big tradition other than egg hunting in our house. I can't tell you what we did last year. Mabye we hid eggs? Maybe we had brunch at a friend's house? Not a big holiday...

But this year, I was lucky in that I had gone to Target in early March for stuff and decided to load up on Easter supplies (because I didn't realize Easter was in mid April!) I had bought Harper an easter basket with candy and toys and such. Plus egg dying kits and plastic eggs, etc etc. So we were ready for this.

Then Kurt added a round two of hunting with clues to other clues to other clues to finally the easter basket. It was a fun morning.

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The Corona Diaries Week 4 - Let's Start Counting Weeks

I fell off the blogging wagon last week because let's be honest: The novelty has worn off. The novelty of staying in to avoid this novel corona virus has gotten old. And now the really hard part begins - continuing to shelter at home for a long, long time.

I find I'm really really scatterbrained. Then I get tense because I'm scatterbrained. Then I say, I'll just sit down and make a list, that always calms me down. But before I can do that I'm putting clothes in the dryer, or taking them out of the dryer, but not folding them. I'm tidying up the living room on my way to clean the cat boxes. Then take out all the trash and wash my hands again. Then sit down to make a list of things to do and it turns out it's really not that long. Sign tax docs, catch up on banking, pay bills, list of new craft ideas I saw online. That's about it. But damn it feels hard to even just do that.

Last week was spring break so things were a bit loosey-goosey. That probably added to my tension. I also haven't been exercising regularly. Not good at all. Usually I can make time for a 30 minute walk, but somehow last week I only managed it twice. I tried an online yoga class and liked it, want to do more. But haven't yet.

Then last week our internet started going downhill. Got very spotty and slow and intermittent. *Fuck* I called Spectrum on Thursday, tried some stuff over the phone, nothing. She scheduled me an appointment and confirmed a technician would come with gloves and a mask. Fine. Ugh, another thing to be tense about - someone I don't know coming into the house. He came, had a mask on, put on fresh gloves at the door and came in and did his work, finished up quick and left. I let Harper out of her bedroom after I sanitized all over. But what if I didn't sanitize enough? Can't think about that now. Turns out the internet went right back to not working. Called again, tried stuff over the phone again, nothing. Signal is correct. Saturday I masked up and went to Spectrum to switch out modems just in case. Even bought a new router from Best Buy and tried that. NOTHING. Ran back to Spectrum to get one of their routers, got on the phone with a very helpful support person who helped us out and now it seems it might just be one of the cables screwing everything up. A technician has been scheduled for Monday (today as I'm writing this) at 5pm. Great. (half sincere, half sarcastic) I'll do my best to sanitize better. Luckily, our internet works on her computer and mine and our phones. But Kurt needs a new cable, probably and we have to make sure there isn't anything else screwing it up.

THE INTERNET CANNOT GO DOWN IN A PANDEMIC.

All that was very annoying and frustrating and hard. I felt it was not good for Harper to see us be so stressed about that particular thing. I tried to be relaxed about her missing some zoom school on Monday. But still. So Sunday I focused on being super available to her and we did lots of fun easter stuff (see a later post).

I know Harper pays attention because she said to me last week, "Mama, you should take three naps a day. Or at least rest three times a day."

She's not wrong. But I don't have time to rest. Do I? Of course I do. I just need to make it happen. Great. Another thing on my short but stressful to-do list.

But with all that, I'm also being very very easy on myself. This whole covid-19/quarantine/shelter in place thing is weird and hard and challenging and NOT NORMAL. So there is a lot to get used to, even after four weeks. And I'm being oh so very diligent about wearing my night guard so I don't crack my teeth while I sleep. And some good news - I haven't gained any weight! Startling actually, but good.

I've been reading good things that keep me feeling better, or at least keep me feeling seen and met. Things like:

-- My friend Melissa's blog in which she also talks about how hard this is and what comforts her. And yes, I did buy 14 bars of fruit nut chocolate, so what?

--She also linked to this article by Mark Manson about Surviving the Looming Mental Health Crisis. Good read. Funny and true and important.

--There is this article too about routines that keep us sane. I've read half of it. I'll get back to it.

--The simplicity of a buttery baked onion. I am going to try this this week. Or whenever I get some bouillon. {adds bouillon to amazon cart}

So I'll blog more weekly. Scatter pics here and there. It's a record for me in the future, and Harper too.

UPDATE - I started writing this on Saturday April 11. Tried to finish/publish it on Monday April 13 but due to internet problems, it didn't happen. Trying again now, Tuesday April 14. Ugh. Also - formatting is out the window as somehow it's super challenging even to upload pics. Just keep scrolling! Double Ugh.

Pics or it didn't happen:

Bought a sewing machine. Teaching myself to sew masks. So far so good. They won't win me Project Runway, but they will help protect us.

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There were various meals made. Some good, some average, some just to keep us alive.

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There was more easter related fun. (New pajamas! Thanks Gammo!)

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We do get outdoors - planting our victory garden. Victory over boredom I guess.

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(Computer won't let me turn this image. Good times.)

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I like catching her reading.

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Masks before the sewing machine.

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Harper had big feelings about something - I think I told her she couldn't eat lunch in her bedroom. So she stomped outside.

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I had a rare rare rare treat last week - staying in bed, drinking coffee and watching it rain. Kurt got up early for a work thing and Harper was watching tv (spring break) and I just to chill with the cats and read with the windows wide open. It was so wonderful.

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But overall, lately this is how I really feel. I'm working on only feeling this way sometimes because it's okay to feel this way sometimes. It's a crazy world out there / in here now.

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The Corona Diaries Days 22 and 23 - Weekend Warriors

Our yard crew came to remove a giant stump in our back yard. We had the tree taken down about three years ago and left the stump. But with some possible construction to come this year, the stump had to go.

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So while that was happening, our hedge also got a major haircut. Being stuck in the house, I really wanted to be able to see out to the street better. And fortunately, it's hard to see into the house with the windows we have and the screens so we are not open to the public!

Mostly though, Mr. Biscuit enjoyed the show.

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While all that went on outside, we had some easter decorations going on inside.

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Plus watching some tv and eating nachos.

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We hung up a new bird feeder outside the office I now share with Harper (when there is school) with it's own squirrel abatement system. I didn't see but I did hear a squirrel fall off of it so I think it works!

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And lastly a bit of batting practice to round out the day.

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We had a lovely dinner then watched another movie as a family and all was right - if not with the world, then at least with our own little one for now. We are doing the best we can, one day, on step at a time.