Tuesday, March 24, 2020

quarantine, week two

The tl;dr is that this still feels mostly like my regular life, minus the constant undercurrent of anxiety.

I had a virtual lunch with my work from home friend today. Who lives in my neighborhood, saw me out walking my dog this weekend, and got lunch from the same restaurant as me before we got on facetime. She agrees - for us, not much has changed.

Houston took on a safe working initiative today which is our version of a lock down. I don't want local restaurants to fail but I don't understand how they are exempt from this? However, I won't complain.

So this weekend, we wanted to support local. I'm honestly really torn on this. How are you handling it? Houston's food scene is predicted to take a while to recover from this (already, and longer the longer this goes on...) so we want to support where we can while we can. And we like to eat. So we spent most of our time in the car but got to-go food from several places to enjoy over the weekend. We didn't touch surfaces, stood away from counters and tables while waiting for our order, and complied with each restaurant's preferences. And we were sure to tip. We used hand sanitizer between each stop, too. Is that good enough? Am I helping to flatten the curve enough while still trying to do a small part to keep the economy afloat?

Anyway. I had been meaning to go to HomeGoods before all of this and wish I had because now it's like an itch I can't scratch. Obviously, even if it were open, I wouldn't go, but it is a thing that's like, hmmm, wish I could do that. I also miss thrifting but I think it's going to take a long time before that feels safe. And, we cleaned out a bunch of stuff to donate, so I wonder when I can get all of that from my house? These are very trivial things but I wanted to document them, because why not?

Pippi is supposed to get spayed on April 3rd. It was included with her adoption fee, but we have to go to a vet that the shelter uses and not our own. Which is fine. I just keep checking the vet's website to see if they are doing procedures. Are the same PPEs needed for pet surgery? I really, really don't want to deal with a dog in heat but I do want people who need lifesaving treatment and those giving that treatment to have what they need. I'm not like certain Texas politicians willing to let one entity suffer to save another. I can't with that.

Work is busy and every time we think we are moving forward, someone comes up and needs us to do a thing, fast. I honestly really like it and enjoy what I'm doing - trying to script a virtual event and troubleshoot all the tech needs. It keeps me busy and is a new challenge and the days fly by. Gives me way less time to watch the news, too.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

blogging in the time of quarantine

I'm torn between no one cares and wanting to document and today, the latter is winning.

Consuming too much coronavirus info is overwhelming but content that is fluffy feels wrong. I feel like this is a thing I'll want to look back on to see how I handled it, so there is nowhere to document like the internet!

So, first thing's first - we are in the early stages of all things shutting down and so far, I don't feel that different. Andrew has jokingly called me a shut-in since I started working from home, and it looks like he was kinda right.

It isn't unusual for me to only leave the house to walk the dog on a work day. Some days, I go to the gym. Usually on Fridays, we go out to eat. Saturdays and Sundays are normal weekend things - brunch and/or dinner, groceries, errands. This past weekend, we had a family party, grabbed takeout from a restaurant in town, and then got groceries and pet food on Sunday. It felt normal. On Monday, Andrew worked from home but went and got us lunch to-go and ran to Costco since I didn't realize we were nearly out of toothpaste and dish soap. Today, he's at work - his boss wants them to work on a staggered schedule. So again - it feels pretty normal.

I feel weird for not feeling different. I'm trying to be extra understanding of those who do. Workwise, when you have the word "events" in your title, things are a little strange, so after the need to cancel everything is over, I'm working to fill my days with things that will make my work easier in the future. I'm trying to make the fact that I can't go out - or at least, I shouldn't - more bearable. Some days, having a puppy is tiring and I need a break from her, so I would go to the gym. Now, that isn't an option, so I am trying to do more things to wear her out or calm her puppy behavior. She is teething now and it's no joke. I understand why she wants to chew my hands incessantly, but I don't have to like it.

Stores here are still open and while light on a few things, we were able to get what we need. Restaurants have to be to-go only, so I'm already anticipating the places we will support this weekend (responsibly, of course). I'm trying to think about what we can do this weekend - clean out the garage? Teach Pippi a new trick? Choose movies for the other to watch?

I'm loving the virtual things to take part in, like Chris Martin's impromptu concert. I went and listened to an Avett Brothers Tiny Desk Concert from 2009. Headspace has meditations aimed at reducing stress and anxiety and even three minutes makes a difference. I'm trying to find little silver linings amidst all of the scary parts.

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

first books of 2020

Last year, I documented all my books on Instagram, and while I liked that, my effort to keep it short meant that I didn't fully capture my thoughts, though I did like doing it as a method of sharing. And since not everyone can add a swipe-up (a swipe-up to goodreads would be super handy!), I wondered if sharing a book in that way even made sense. Bre is keeping a paper book journal and that also sounds like a thing I would like but I haven't made time for it yet. So, that said, I have a few minutes on a call to write some book thoughts so I don't totally forget what I have read this month, so far.

The Chelsea Girls - I started this in December and pushed through it for whatever reason. I think by the time I realized I didn't care about it much, I had invested too much time. There was one aspect that I was really interested in, but for whatever reason, it felt like the characters were always at arm's length and I just never got into it. Two stars.

Things You Save in a Fire - Brene Brown recommended this in her old newsletter and the author has Texas connections so I added it to my list. If you like TJR, you may like Katherine Center. Both of her books I've read have a woman dealing with a major life event and seeming fairly human through it all. By human, I mean that I don't think a ton is romanticized and there is an element of realness to their actions, thoughts, and problems. I liked this, despite being over the trope of closed-off female character whose life would be easier if she just talked to someone, so I added another of the author's books to my hold list at the library right away. Four stars.

Before We Were Strangers - This cover was really appealing and I've read some YA books that the author had written, so I was interested in a more adult story. This book went back and forth between the character's present selves (mid-30s) and college selves which worked for the story. It still had a bit of YA-perfect man syndrome (you know what I mean? Where the male love interest is so dreamy and the only one who really SEES her...) and was highly improbable in my opinion, but it did keep me interested. Three stars.

How to Walk Away - My second Katherine Center book. Her books are easy romances but when the mood strikes and the library delivers, I go for it. There was a lot of conflict in this book (at least one plotline that I maybe could have lived without), but I always love when a book that has a solid epilogue that tells you fairly far into the future. Four more stars.

I'm currently reading the biography of Mr. Rogers since I loved the doc about his life, but it is s-u-p-e-r slow and keeps putting me to sleep, so it may become a DNF. How do you log your reading? Is that important to you? I rarely, if ever, remember a book beyond a few weeks, so I need a little something to jog my memory.

Linking up with Steph and Jana for the first time in forever!