What with staying at home even more than usual, I initially thought I’d have plenty of time to blog.

But with my kids home, they want to eat . . . like, three times a day!  And then we have to clean that up.  And by the time that’s done, they want to eat again!

Furthermore, they have assignments to do online.  And then we got them hooked on an online “educational” game (which has been a great motivator to get their homework done).

However, that all means that I have very little chance to sit down and write here.

But today we’re having a lazier day than usual.  (It’s 11:30 and the kids are downstairs watching TV.  They haven’t even had breakfast!)

Oh, wait . . . we did have doughnuts.

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So before I drag them upstairs and get them to be somewhat productive today, I’ll share what’s been going on here.  I’ve been enjoying watching the shenanigans of those of you who are better at posting on facebook and instagram!  So here’s the low-down in our neck of the woods!

How Are You Doing?

That’s the question on everyone’s mind, right?

For good reason!  And it’s totally OK that we’ve all got answers ranging anywhere from, “I’m honestly loving this whole staying-at-home thing.”  to “I’m not doing OK at all . . . in fact, I’m suicidal.”  If you’re on that end of the spectrum, thank you for admitting it!  Please, please, please call someone.  If you don’t have anyone to call, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 in the US.  If you’re in Mexico (Saltillo specifically) the UAdeC’s School of Psychology is advertising special services for during the quarrantine.  Check out their facebook page here.   (If someone else has better resources, list them in the comments section!)  And honestly, even if you call someone you know, call the Suicide Prevention Lifeline, too.  Let people who love you know that you’re suicidal.  But realize that they’re going to freak out.  The people on the lifeline are trained professionals and will likely have better options for you than your loved ones who are just terrified for you (and themselves).  Or, click here for a link for finding a counselor in your area (they’ll be using zoom these days).

Since Day #1, I’ve been thankful that I adore the people that I’m quarantined with.  (However, this is Day #16, so we’re taking a well-deserved break from each other, as they are currently watching episode upon episode of The Pink Panther on YouTube.)

But not everyone can say that about the people they’re quarantined with.  If domestic violence is making you feel trapped in a bad situation, it’s better for you to get out than to be quarrantined in such a toxic situation.  If necessary, quarantine yourself at a domestic violence shelter.  For numbers and locations of Domestic Violence Shelters in the US, click here.  For the Women’s Shelter in Saltillo, Mexico, click here.  Yes, living in a group home is probably riskier for contracting COVID-19.  But staying in an abusive situation is even riskier.  Get out.

For those who fear that they might be abusive to their children:  take a break.  Get out.  Take a walk.  Apologize.  Figure out what your triggers are.  If possible and necessary, quarantine your kids with relatives or friends.  Medical personnel are having their kids stay with extended family and friends so they don’t get exposed.  If you are a threat to your children, and they are safer without you, don’t be afraid to reach out.  Your family and friends want to keep your kids safe, too.  If that is not an option, contact those domestic violence resources listed here.  The National Child Abuse Hotline (US) is 1-800-422-4453.  If you’re in Mexico, contact your nearest DIF agency.

Other resources if you feel you’re an abusive parent?

Need an therapist online?  Local counselors are working online, but if you don’t even know where to start, click here.

Whew!  OK, after all that, how are we all doing?

Schoolwork

Not being in a affluent district, we are not doing elearning.  Those kids who do have internet access at home are supposed to do 30-minutes a day on the infamous iReady platform.  (My kids hate it, but it seems like it’s good for them.  It gives them lessons so kids can learn at their own pace.  They do it during the regular school day at school, too, so at least I feel that they are learning something while they’re here!)

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We also got a packet of homework sent home on the 13th of March.  As we’ve worked through that (and just got the announcement that schools are closed until May, we should be getting more eventually).  But at this point, we’re working on going back and correcting the third grader’s work.  I thought I was checking in on him while he was doing it, but–hoo, baby!–there were some pages where he just didn’t read the questions.  For example:  What month is 4 months after March?  His answer?  5.  *sigh*

This might be a very long week!

Queen Slow is still plugging away at her original homework packet.  But, part of the reason she is Queen Slow is because she is very thorough.  So when she finally finishes it, she’ll be good.

If she finishes it.

To complicate things, she’s currently in the middle of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.  I have a feeling she’ll have a longer attention span when she finishes the book.  (And then there will be no more to read after that one!  Ha!)

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Except that is one of the saddest things about the Harry Potter series.  It does end.

I’m still not OK with that.

Aaaaand, I digress . . .

What About the Four-Year-Old?

He is getting scandalously neglected.IMG_0181

And he’s feeling it.

Fortunately, we’re keeping the dog in the house when the Hubs isn’t here, so he’s got his best buddy, and life is somewhat better.

That, and I’m shamelessly upping the screen time, so that makes him happy.

Until he needs to detox from all the screen time, and then things get ugly fast.

With another month to go, we’ll figure something out!

Besides School?

When the girl gets bored, she bakes.  Our house is the reason why there is no flour in the grocery stores.  (Just kidding–we’re only using slightly more than we usually do.)  However, we only have a toaster oven at the moment, so she is counting the days until the quarrantine ends and we can go out and buy a “real” stove/oven.

Our one panic purchase was to buy a bread machine (from Goodwill), and The Boy has stepped up to be our official Bread Baker.  We’re not buying all the yeast though, because I stocked up in the fall, thinking I would bake at my parents’ house.  I didn’t.

But now we are!

Online Offerings

As said earlier, I bribe the kids to finish their homework by giving them an hour to play Adventure Academy.  They gave us a free trial offer, which we used, got the kids hooked, and now it looks like the trial offer is over and we’ve got to start paying.  I don’t usually go in for things like that, but this month . . . I might just bite the bullet.

And the kids love it.

This month, it will be $10 well spent.

But I will pull the plug when school is back in session . . . or quarrantine is lifted . . . whichever comes first!

We’re also hitting Duolingo pretty heavy.  I finally downloaded it onto my phone (as I’m never able to get on to my computer these days), and am cruising through the Swedish course that I started 5 years ago.IMG_0186

You know, when I went to Sweden 5 years ago.  Maybe I’ll go again in 5 more years, but I’ll be able to understand something more than, “Hej!”

The kids are learning German.  Last summer The Boy started Navajo.  Then he got frustrated with that and tried Spanish . . . because he wanted to show off how good it was at it.  I figured it was good practice for reading and writing.  But now that he can read and write, he’s trying his hand at German.  Queen Slow started German last summer.  Still chipping away at it!

Duolingo is free, and rather enjoyable, so give it a whirl.

It’s also a much better option than obsessively watching the news.  Give it a try!

Hobbies

I learned how to knit hats this winter.  Each of the kids got one.  But Mr. Ravenclaw lost his after about a month.  I’m hoping it’s hanging out in the school’s Lost and Found.

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So now that I’ve mastered double-pointed needles, I’m going to tackle socks!

Here’s my practice sock!  I started it to see if I could actually make a toe according to the directions.  Then I continued to see if I could make a heel.  Then I thought I ought to finish it.

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And then didn’t have enough yarn to make a matching one!

But now I’m starting on proper sock yarn (mostly wool) with proper-sized needles, so this one should turn out better.  I hope it doesn’t take more than one skein to make two socks, or by the end of quarrantine, I’m going to have a pile of socks that don’t have pairs!

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Music

In the few minutes that no one is yelling, “Mom!”  I pick up my flute.  And shake my head at how much I’ve lost since I stopped taking lessons two year ago.  And then I amuse myself by how much I have maintained.

And then I bust out my vocal music, hoping that I can get into The Toledo Opera chorus this fall!

But I won’t torture anyone but my kids with what I’m playing and singing.

But for those who would like some free (but canned) opera, the Metropolitan Opera is streaming a new opera every night for free!   That’s worth checking out!

And my flute teacher is currently quarrantined with her flute-playing husband, so they’re recording and sharing some marvelous duets this month!

Follow Mayo at @mayo.flautista on instagram for daily duet updates!

That’s my randomness for this week!

Happy Quarantine, everyone!

(And if it’s not remotely happy for you–take a walk!  Call someone!  Bake cinnamon rolls!  Binge watch Downton Abbey!  Do what you have to do!)

2 Replies to “Hello from Isolation!”

    1. That may be her new blog nickname! (It’s soooo true!) I get so frustrated, yet I can see myself do exactly the same things (the same sloooooowww way) at her age.

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