Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Camp Quarantine - First full week

Camp Favorites this Week

New recipe - Easy Lemon Broccoli Pasta ( It was delicious with a combination of lemon and red pepper flakes flavor. I added some sauteed Italian chicken sausage and Parmesan cheese to the recipe to make it a main dish.

Cambridge Virtual Summer Festival of Learning brief talks 

-  The one on "John Paul Sartre as a public intellectual: WWII, the French Resistance and existential philosophy". It reminded me of content and discussion in high school Humanities class that are core assumptions I have lived with. Such as, we are the sum total of our actions (not our thoughts/beliefs) and that we are ultimately responsible for our actions including the unintended consequences. I know we read some of Sartre's writings in high school between 1965 & 1967 although exactly what escapes me. Interesting how I adopted it. I think it fit the New England Puritan heritage & Scandinavian social responsibility ethos that this good Midwestern WASP child of a NH father and IL mother was raised with at that time.

- An interview with Sarah Burton the author of a new novel "The Strange Adventures of H". Made me buy the book!

Art - I finished a colored pencil drawing. 

Planning Trip - Friday we head out for 10 days to visit son, DIL and granddaughter. I'll post when I get back. 

Happy Camping!

Monday, July 6, 2020

Photo Scavenger Hunt

Isn't this a fun activity for quarantine summer camp! Leslie posted this fun sounding photo scavenger hunt on her blog today. 

I'm going to take the list with me on our visit with our granddaughter as she likes these kind of challenges and we will be providing day care for 3 days of our visit. 


Welcome to the 2020 Summer Photo Scavenger Hunt (#SPSH) – the virus edition hosted by Patio Postcards.  She describes the scavenger hunt like this:  “There’s some searches for at home, close to home or away from home.  I hope some encourage you to think outside of the box & some that may require an open eye to find.  One rule … use photos you have taken between June 1st & September 30th of 2020, other than that, it’s meant for fun.  Find some or find all, I hope everyone has fun with it.”


1.   A favorite piece of jewelry

2.   Something with or in a knot

3.   Something with the colors of your country’s flag

4.   A toy you play with

5.   Something you have more than one of

6.   An object in the shape of a triangle

7.   Something that displays a rule(s)

8.   A leaf longer than your hand

9.   Something that starts with the initial of your name (first or last)

10.   An object smaller than a paper clip

11.   Something you need to throw away

12.   Something that holds your favorite beverage

13.   A rubber band/elastic in use

14.   An object with wheels

15.   Something inherited

16.   Rough texture

17.   Something naturally round

18.   An object that can go in the water

19.   A stone/rock/pebble with some color in it

20.   Something with the number 7 in it

Check out her full post with lovely and meaningful photos. (

Sunday, July 5, 2020

Kicking off Camp Quarantine

July 1st - Welcome to Camp
Wouldn't you know it - we arrived at camp knowing we would have the place to ourselves for the first 10 days only to find out the prior week's housekeeper hadn't finished cleaning lol. 

So we cleaned the kitchen and vacuumed, and changed the bed. In the afternoon we had free time so Hubby enjoyed an online class while I finished a book and got an iced latte at Starbucks drive through. Later while dinner cooked I was able to enjoy a beer on the shady patio facing the nearby mountains.

July 2nd - Take Out Thursday
A green lentil soup cooking spree in the morning means my future camper self will be thankful to my present self. Lunch was every camper's favorite - "hotdog" (Italian chicken sausage) on a bun, raw veggies and a popsicle.

I got an iced latte at Starbucks again and enjoyed it while listening to a live Nora Jones min-concert on YouTube.

We ordered cocktails and food from a favorite restaurant. Enjoyed Mules & a veggie roll on our patio. Shared grilled salmon with apple slaw and grilled apple, Chardonnay chicken with gravy and arugula, and a side of grilled asparagus. Almost like going out to eat!
July 3rd - A Day for Me
An early solo exercise class. Zoom meet up with friends this morning in the form of my book discussion group. 

Armchair traveling with a tour of Oxford ( I really enjoyed seeing what I have read about so many times. I wanted to return to the British Isles for a nice long visit soon but that is not going to happen so online it is.

July 4th - More Armchair Travel & a New Recipe
Today I visited Cambridge via YouTube and then signed up for online short talks that are going to be part of their online summer continuing education program. For years I have wanted to actually attend one of their summer sessions in person and live at Cambridge for a week or two. Maybe later but online is good for now.

 I made microwave chocolate mug cake for us to split for dessert - a new recipe and it hit the spot.

Planning Future Camp Activities - 
I've been brainstorming activities to do with our granddaughter. 

I'm taking supplies to make a paper Happy Pup Day banner for the dog birthday celebration. I saw a matching game to make in my online research that uses paper plates with drawn on pictures that are the same on 2 plates. You line up a 4 X 4 grid of plates and then do the flip 2 over until you get a match. I'm sure you've played this memory game with cards but I added paper plates to my packing list.

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

July Camp Quarantine ideas

You all had some great ideas for Camp Quarantine ! 

We are still planning a trip to Berkeley so some of mine will involve family. 

Here's my brainstorm list so far:

At home: 
- New recipe each week
- Drawing a week
- Patio drinks and hearty hor d'oeuvres dinner with Hubby
- Take out Wednesdays with dessert too

And with our granddaughter and her parents:
- Creative neighborhood map drawing (the idea is to draw a map of how you see your neighborhood not a navigational map)
- Pup birthday party - pup cake, banner, etc. 
- Backyard games
- Gardening 
- Put on magic trick show for Mom & Dad
- Sidewalk chalk art on walk or rocks
- Paint rocks and leave for people to find
- Write and illustrate a book to read to Mom & Dad

I need more but its a start. How's your list going?

Monday, June 29, 2020

Covid facts & news from valid sources

Feel like you have whiplash trying to keep up with how to protect yourself and loved ones yet still live your life and keep your mental health intact?

Try some of these sources for fact based news on the rapidly changing science, current best practice advice and just the comfort of knowing you are doing your best and not wasting your efforts.

Johns Hopkins Resource Center

Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at UMN

And then find your city, county or state public health info site for data, current public health orders, info on what is open or not and resources to turn to for help. Here are my county's and city's as examples: Ventura County Recovers and Camarillo

Saturday, June 27, 2020

Camp Quarantine Anyone?



This morning I saw that Leslie has an uplifting post on her blog about Quarantine t-shirts and it included one that says Camp Quarantine. Great idea for us adults too.

Now Leslie has a pool in her backyard so lots of fun days there. I don't have one. Well we do but it is the HOA's and you have to reserve a 45 minute slot, get your temperature taken, no changing rooms or restrooms, no patio chairs - you get the idea.

I do have a tiny patio, space for crafts or other small projects, a nicely furnished kitchen and a Hubby who is willing to try lots of things.

I'm always reading so that is on my list. We plan to go on a 10 day trip to visit our younger son, DIL and granddaughter but we'll see if that is still possible in mid-July.

So let's brainstorm some ideas of how to make July a fun Camp Quarantine or Staycation!

You go first - 

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Spend - Save - Do

Happy sunbathing poodle girl
- Having the Trader Joe's staff grind our coffee isn't working out so well (a little confusion over left vs right in the settings lol) so I ordered a rather expensive home coffee grinder that got good reviews.
- Hubby ordered a children's magic kit to give to our granddaughter but first he will learn the "tricks" so he can teach her. She always asks "Show me a trick Papa". I added in 2 charger plugs and a box of staples. Oh the excitement. Also getting our usual subscribe and save Amazon order of dog food and other items.
- Starbucks drive through (but it is worth it to leave the house!)
- Food waste - tossed 2 apples and 1/4 of a cabbage

- Cooked at home all week including homemade chicken bean veggie soup from homemade broth which was delicious if I do say so myself.
- Hubby washed the dog who does love her baths.
- Gave myself a manicure and pedicure.
- Love our health insurance and those $0 owed statements.

- Planning a 10 day visit to our Berkeley son, DIL and granddaughter. The logistics of having places to stop along the way is shifting our drive to the truck heavy and scenery deficient I-5. That assures us of open and cleaned rest stops though. Here are guidelines on how to safely use a public restroom when traveling during the pandemic (public restroom safety)
- Caught up on my club president to do list except for finishing my calls to members. Unfortunately we have concluded we need to change the locks on the clubhouse and start over with key and code distribution. We counted keys today! We are also revising the rental agreements and asking everyone to sign new ones. A Covid policy on when and how we will reopen the clubhouse for use is written and in place. On to the fun stuff hopefully.
- Picked up a library book that I requested just before the pandemic. Their curbside pick up process is great. Don't think I will read the book though as it looks tedious.
- Taking forever to finish deep cleaning the kitchen and will do the floor and call it done for now.
- Diligently followed up with doctors (not impressed with their communication and follow up!) and as expected my cardiac health is fine with no risk for surgery. Because of our planned trip surgery will now occur late July or early August with 10 to 12 weeks of recovery. I missed the low point of Covid infections. Sigh.

Happy About
- Laughs with Hubby.
- Great friend in former club President who is great to discuss ideas & issues with and then reach decision as how to proceed.
- A cousin who likes to write letters back and forth. I am very happy to see her letter in my mailbox.
- Sons and DILs who want to spend time with us!