News from our shelter

Palm Sunday paper frond and The Scream (from a neighborhood scavenger hunt) sit side by side on the dining room window.

Wow. A lot has changed since I last opened my blog and thought about writing.

We are putting messages in our windows for our neighbors since we can’t actually talk to them.

We’ve gone from boots weather to spring but I am not worried. There will be boots weather again. So disappointing, but it is Chicago. We are known for our many seasons: boots weather and construction weather.

As retirees together with two years of experience under our belts, we generally have this “home alone together” thing pretty down pat. We each wake up at different times, make our own breakfasts and coffee, and settle in to our tasks for the day. We meet up for meals and some shared media time. It works for us and we are pretty happy campers.

Walking at the empty golf course saves our sanity. We don’t care if we look funny.

Nothing much is new in the quarantined life. Except that we can’t go to the gym, band, church, book club, the botanic garden, restaurants, parties, work at the homeless shelter at our church, or basically do the things that create sparks in our retirement lives. We get out occasionally to walk and have graduated from our bandanna masks to actual tailored masks made by a crafty friend.

You are all in the same boat with us, those of you who follow me from around the world and from here in Illinois. I keep looking for the silver lining in all of this, and I can see a few glimmers of hope.

When Music Man retired, he said that he had a series of projects to do that would likely take years. In year three, he’s working on financial records. His shelter-in-place project is a continuation of what he was doing before, but now he’s got even more time. Lots and lots of time to go through our old tax records and throw stuff out. Lots and lots of recycled paper and bags of shredded paper. And we don’t intend to take this stuff to the condo or retirement home, whichever comes first.

Potato Pancakes from the Village Grill

I’ve been cooking up a storm, as many of us are, and my Google calendar is now full of saved recipe links. It turns out to actually be a good way to save recipes — the Google calendar is searchable and I put the link in the Notes section. Pretty slick and easy to go back and find a recipe. We are also trying to support local restaurants by ordering meals several times a week. Posting the photos on the restaurants’ Facebook pages keeps me improving my photography skills as well.

We’ve learned a new skill — videoconferencing on Zoom. It’s how we are doing church these days, but I’m a little concerned about its privacy problems. There’s Skype, Messenger chat, WhatsApp chat, and good ole FaceTime on our phones. A plethora of ways to reach out and virtually touch our family and friends.

So that’s what’s happening here, friends. Pretty much the same thing that’s happening across the world. We are in this together, and together we can save lives if we take it seriously. Tell me what’s going on with you in the comments.

I’ve been missing you.

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One thought on “News from our shelter

  1. Hi Kids – We are also in “shelter in place” mode in Florida. Today I “virtually ran” the Washington D.C. Cherry Blossom Run in the park near our place in St. Pete, FL. The plan was to meet up with my running team in Washington D.C. and run the race as a team. However, we were able to register our finish times (‘on our honor’) and then they’ll send us our t-shirts and medals. It kept me in the game.

    Another change is doing my weight training “virtually” rather than going into a gym. I think it’s harder to do, as you don’t have the “gym vibe” to distract you from the work you’re doing. Again, it’s keeping me in the game.

    Since the local bookstore (Haslam’s in St. Pete – largest in Florida) is closed, we have had to resort to purchasing books from Amazon. Thank heavens we can get some – I need some funny/light reading material.

    Since we’re in nice weather, it allows us to go on bike rides together (no group rides 😒), walk, run or just sit outside and read.

    We are thankful we stayed in Florida rather than returning to Illinois.

    That’s all from the sunshine state! 😎

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