The New Normal Made Me Do It


The New Normal Made Me Do ItI know a lot of people have resumed most of their daily routines, but we have a medically at risk child so we are still in the thick of always home all the time with very few exceptions. Because we are working from home, schooling from home, and vacationing from home, we have had to make home more…everything.

I am not saying it is all happy all the time, but I am choosing to see this in a positive light because I do believe one day I will miss these times.

Hear me out: When I am leaving work and running to drop a kid off at the gym, then rushing to get a healthy-ish meal ready, while simultaneously doing laundry, dishes, paying bills, and planning our next vacation, I know I will remember the quarantine days fondly. I will miss having a quiet morning with my coffee before strolling to my desk to work for 7.5 hours. I will miss being able to relax more and get more done all in the same day. I will not miss the pandemic, of course, or the risks associated with it, the deaths it has caused, or the gaping divide it has put between the US from a political standpoint.

This post represents an appreciation for the things I have accomplished during this long safer-at-home time. It has taught me some things, stretched my creativity and patience, and there are some changes I have made that I will keep forever.

  1. Letting my grays go. I actually started doing this in December. I try to be healthy and one day I decided it was probably not very smart to continue to put poison on my brain every four weeks. Turns out my grays are actually a very pretty silver and I am embracing them. I know it is shocking to a lot of people, but once it is all grown out, I will be more salt and pepper and I think that is a softer look than my naturally almost black hair. My husband doesn’t love it, but even he is getting used to it. Verdict: Keeping.
  2. Cut my daughter’s hair. She desperately needed a haircut as her hair was all kinds of crazy — turns out it doesn’t grow evenly…who knew?! So one evening, I stood her up on a chair outside and snipped away. She loves it and it turned out pretty great. Verdict: Not keeping, though I will repeat it as needed until we can go to a professional.
  3. DIY new flooring. We ripped out our ugly old carpet that was here when we moved in five years ago. We always planned to do it, but it seemed like too big a project to tackle on our own, so we kept putting it off until we had the money to hire it out. We have two rooms completed, and one left to go and I am so in love with the new flooring! Verdict: Keeping. My husband and I have figured out how to work together and not kill each other and we got new floors!
  4. Got a puppy. We figured since we were home all day, it was the perfect time to potty train a new puppy. Turns out we were right! Easiest training ever; she has trained us to remember to take her out frequently! HA! Whatever, it works. Verdict: Keeping.
  5. Got a kitty. We were somewhat forced into this, as our precious cat went missing during the pandemic. After six weeks of searching, a friend of ours had a litter of kittens so we ended up taking one. Verdict: Keeping.
  6. Organized bathroom drawers. One day out of the blue, I was tired of all the accumulated left-over make-up and hotel shampoo bottles, and decided on the spot to clean it all out. Verdict: Keeping.
  7. Organized kitchen cabinets and pantry. See above, substitute kitchen things. Verdict: Keeping.
  8. Purged everything. This is a work in progress, but I hope to continue it. Why do we have so much stuff and where did it all come from? Redoing the floors definitely helped me with this one, since I basically had to pack up three rooms. Verdict: Keeping.
  9. Read a ton of books. I am usually so busy I only read a few books a year, and usually on vacation. I have managed to read so many books I have lost count! Verdict: Keeping.
  10. Got really into investing in the stock market. I use an app that is free and I find myself clicking it instead of social media when I mindlessly unlock my phone. I started out really small and set myself a monthly investment amount. I have learned a lot and made a little extra cash, too. Verdict: Keeping.
  11. Started making cloth masks. This is something my 19-year-old and I have done together. I work at the health department and in the beginning, we had a shortage of masks, so she and I started making them for that purpose. Then we started making them just because we wanted a cute one or as a gift for someone. She even made one for my brother-in-law’s wedding that matched his suit. Verdict: Both. Will keep doing it as long as needed, and after that we will find something else to sew together.
  12. Ordering my groceries online and picking them up. Life changer. I always thought it seemed lazy for other people to pick out my groceries, and I sort of enjoyed doing it myself. But I still do that; it is just online. I love pulling up and having the groceries put in my car for me. LUXURIOUS. Verdict: Keeping.
  13. Stopped eating out. I literally made three meals a day for my family for months and months. I got so tired of it, but we did save a ton of money and ate healthier, too. We have recently started ordering from a local restaurant and eating on their patio every now and then, too. Verdict: Not keeping. A meal someone else makes for me just tastes better.
  14. Taking long walks twice a day. See #4. Verdict: Keeping.
  15. Riding bikes with my youngest. I forgot how fun riding bikes can be! Verdict: Keeping.
  16. Watching church from my couch. I miss the fellowship, but I do enjoy sipping my coffee with having my feet up. I am thankful we have an online option, and grateful to those that are sacrificing to keep our church going. Verdict: Not keeping.
  17. Visiting with family in the driveway. I miss my people. Verdict: Not keeping.
  18. Watching movies. Not that we never watched movies before, but we are making it a habit and we are doing it as a family and I love it. Verdict: Keeping.
  19. Stopped buying clothes. I literally work in my workout clothes and I love it. I don’t need to buy clothes because I don’t wear clothes. Verdict: Both. I love clothes, but I have been guilty of buying more than I need in the past. I have actually gone on buying freezes for a year at a time in the past and loved my results. I was able to teach myself that I don’t need new clothes every season and I find new ways to wear what is already in my closet.
  20. Stopped wearing make-up. I have put make-up on two or three times since March. I love my skin and I think it looks better than it has in years. I am getting older (see #1) and I think the make-up actually makes my lines look worse. Verdict: Keeping.

What are the changes you have made during quarantine you will keep? Tell me in the comments.


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