Little things

2020-03-30 10.39.10
Sylv walking on the north commons, round the corner from our house.

So, we’re all now working from home. Monica at the Travel Hack put up a great post last week with some tips on how to do it for those of you who may be new to working from home with kids. For those who have school-age children who can entertain themselves safely for a little while, just try to let go of any expectations. If you manage a couple of hours, you’re doing fine.

If you, like me, are holed up with a toddler, take any moment you can. At the time of writing, there are unsettling noises coming from the conservatory, where Sylvia is out of my sight with many, many felt tip pens. Though Mondays and Wednesdays are usually my busiest days, I’m just fitting in work where there’s a chink. It’s the only way possible.

The weather has been glorious in our part of the world for the last few days and so we’ve spent as much time outdoors as possible. I’m really lucky to have a garden in which to read, do yoga and drink beer while the baby threads cheerios.

We are going to get the tents out for a bit of a change of scenery. This is an ideal time to practise camping with a baby or toddler, and if you choose to do the same you’ll be well-equipped when the lockdown is lifted. Our first outing (after the street party, the visit to our local, and after hitting up every one of our favourite eateries) is going to be a trip to the islands to go camping. They’ve asked us to stay away for the time being, and we respect that. Until we’re welcome back, we’ll look back over old pictures and plan our next visit.

Some other things that have been keeping us sane are: dance workouts, where the kid does a miles-better squat than me; crafting projects, using whatever I have in the house; baking. Also, I try to always keep in mind that a huge portion of the British public are now in the same boat: trying their best to do a good job of working and childcare at the same time.

The world might feel unweildly at the moment, but we’re in it together. There are museum tours put online, there are PE lessons. There are people doing great things everywhere, and there is both a magazine and a newspaper publishing stories about happy things.

It has been a blessing to be able to speak to friends and family via videochat, but the most hilarity came from playing on Houseparty. After a successful trial by my parents, we also managed to make Trivial Pursuits work well, using a seperate screen set up on the board so everyone could see what was going on.

And, though ideally I would have liked to take my knitting guru out for a coffee and cake to get her to talk me through the extremely confusing pattern instructions on my No Frills Sweater, photos and videos meant she could see what my problems were and explain it carefully.

To stop from relying solely on technology – though it has been important – we’ve finally started having dinner at the table every night instead of in front of the TV. If there’s just one thing I’ll bring along with us when normal life resumes, whether that’s in three weeks or six or six months, it will be this. Setting the table, looking into each other’s eyes, having a conversation over our meal.

Honestly, with so much available online, and with the weather turning favourable, is there any reason not to stay the fuck at home?


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