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Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Covid-19 Shutdown Diary Day 23: Well that trip to CVS was interesting

I headed off to CVS and the pet store with my homemade mask in place and what a change a couple of weeks has caused. You can only get prescriptions at the pharmacy now where they have a barrier up to protect the employees. You have to take anything else to the front register. You can only purchase "essential" items although the clerk didn't expand on what that meant. Of course no paper goods or disinfecting products on the shelves still. Employees wearing masks. The biggest change were tables in front of the usual place to put your items that was holding the credit card machine and a basket to put your items into. Good distancing.

The same thing at the pet store, but only customer at a time as it is a small store. I'm glad all these things are in place but it was a dramatic change.

I have decided to try the senior hours at Vons later in the week to see if it is easier to stay at a distance then plus since it is first thing in the morning perhaps they will have more in stock. Yet another new shopping experience.

We have set up a "dirty" counter where all packaged items are left for the appropriate amount of time to let any virus die. It is getting a lot of use.


On the way home from my short shopping excursion I heard part of a news conference with our governor and he indicated that they think the number of new cases will not peak in California until mid-May although Los Angeles county if anticipating a very rough week right now. I guess my thinking that it will be July or later until the restrictions are lifted may be on target.

Connecting while Distancing - Just emails back and forth with a friend.

Carrying On - After craving something chocolate for a few days, baking was on the to do list. I only have cocoa powder in the pantry so thought of brownies but found chocolate muffins used half as many eggs. Haven't decided what to make based on egg availability in the stores ever. The muffins hit the spot.

I was supposed to have a routine Medicare Wellness visit and annual prescription renewals in 10 days with lab tests sooner. I called the Dr's office and they rescheduled me for early June pending whether or not it is safe to go to the lab by then. They authorized prescription extensions though to carry me through.

Then I called the vet to see what the new procedure is there. You call once you arrive and they come out and get the dog and charge you when they return her. They will cut her toenails if needed - the groomer has been doing it. They also had more medication in stock for her and we scheduled her appointment for May. All set to take her for her monthly Addison's shot next week.

Our local OLLI program is offering a very reduced number of courses for Spring for free via Zoom so Hubby is doing 2 of them. I'm not so keen on the topics so will carry on differently.

Thankful for - I am so thankful that we are financially stable as the cost of one of my prescriptions has soared and that California has a governor who seems to be tackling the pandemic as well as can be done.

Monday, April 6, 2020

Covid-19 Shutdown Diary Day 22: Start of week 4

Three weeks down of the new normal. We are adjusting and hope you are as well.

The human mind and mood is a strange thing! Today is dreary and rainy, but somehow that makes staying home in usually sunny S. Cal seem normal. In Atlanta it would have been just another day to get outside but here I tend to hunker down on rainy days and it feels cozy. I'll take it.

This morning the mountains were partially hidden by clouds versus my usual sunny day view. You can only see the nearest hills. By mid-afternoon the rain was over and we could see clearly again.

Connecting while Distancing - Wrote yet another cousin who lives in the NE but in a relatively rural area where she teaches high school art. I am curious how she is doing that via the internet.

One of Hubby's elderly aunt's called and she said the doctor approved her trying THC for her dizziness so he is going to try to figure out what product might help her, buy it and deliver it to her condo building.

Carrying On - Hubby had another drum lesson over Facetime, I walked the dog, listened to 5 more CDs and kept one, and cleaned my office space. Dinner was split pea soup, salad and cornbread.


Sunday, April 5, 2020

Covid-19 Diary Day 21: Whereupon the poodle gets a trim

Connecting while Distancing -

Said hi to a friend and her husband from a distance when they porch delivered a couple of homemade face masks and homemade hand sanitizer.

Got a birthday card and gift check ready to mail for DIL's 50th! We will have to celebrate with her down the road.

Carrying On - 

Today was the day to try to start dealing with the poodle girl's hair as she is pretty fluffy on her face, feet and bottom especially. I gave her a bath and then trimmed very carefully around her face, feet and bottom. I'm not quite ready to try to do the whole dog!

I did find this on How to cut a poodle's hair using scissors and I am sure we will have to try it all eventually. I'm waiting for the grooming brush I ordered and will ask the vet tech to check her toenails when I take her for her monthly shot.

What else? Some stretches, made veggie broth & started split pea soup for tomorrow. We had chicken, pasta with sauce and veggies for dinner.

Finished an interesting book, The Plague by Daniel DeFoe of Robinson Crusoe fame. Set during the mid 1660's while the plague decimated London and the surrounding area but focused on how people behaved. Fiction although the reviews say he got the facts right. I thought it might be a difficult read due to the current pandemic but it wasn't for me. As a social scientist I found the story quite interesting and it shows that human nature hasn't changed much if at all.

Thankful for - My willingness to research and try new things which makes me fairly adaptable.

Saturday, April 4, 2020

Covid-19 Shutdown Diary Day 20: Homemade face masks & donating PPE

I continue to be appalled at this country's inability to provide PPE and testing during this pandemic. I get that this situation is unprecedented in modern times yet look at how the country has been mobilized to produce weapons of war. This is a war and we aren't winning when the VP notes that the trajectory of the disease here is the same as in Italy and governors, health care workers and others are begging the public to donate lifesaving materials. Appalled is too polite but I'll go with it.

So we are to the point of trying to make our own face masks. Although it is acknowledged that they aren't great at keeping the virus out and that people will use them wrong and therefore potentially contaminate themselves, I think of it simply being the best we can do right now since it is vital that health professionals have the real personal protective equipment. I do understand that it will help those who are infected, but don't know it from spreading the virus so far in the air and may prevent some transmission that way. It is something to try at least.

I found this NPR article that now only explains what is known and unknown about homemade mask effectiveness, but also has links for how to make them and where to donate locally any N95 or true surgical masks and other PPE that you may have at home or at your business. California has set up a website for those with larger quantities of supplies available or that they could manufacture to send in the info so it can be coordinated.

We have one package of industrial N95 masks from the last wildfire episode. There is now a place I can donate them here according to their search function. I can buy more masks when they are back in the home improvement stores. Wish I had more to donate.

Connecting while Distancing - I am blessed with the friends I have made since moving. One friend who is a great crafts person offered to make us masks and I am taking her up on it. Her husband will do a porch delivery of them.

I also found that we have two 100% cotton pillowcases that we don't often use so I may try making tie masks from them and then share them myself if it works out.

Carrying On - Today was laundry day which includes changing the bed and towels. Had a very fitful night so took a nap and read. Hubby has really limited his intake of the news and commentary which is a good thing. I think we are both mildly depressed while at the same time fully accepting that this is the new normal and doing what we can.

Friday, April 3, 2020

Covid-19 Shutdown Diary Day 19:

For the first time today I encountered a walker/runner in our community who was ignoring the 6 feet social distancing. He came from behind us and if the dog hadn't barked he would have actually brushed me when passing. Idiot!

Well now that I have that out of my system ...

Connecting while Distancing - My book discussion group met via Zoom and although only 4 of us showed up it was lovely to talk books and get some recommendations of what to read and where to get more free or low cost books during this time.

Carrying On - I gave myself the day off LOL. We are even having leftovers with supplemental veggies for dinner.

Thankful for - My husband being easy to be sharing a home with during lockdown.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Covid-19 Shutdown Diary Day 18: Lots of chats today

Connecting while Distancing - Had 4 good chats today by starting with a Facetime call from granddaughter and DIL. So fun as always. Then I had another board meeting as we had to vote on the charities we are going to support this year, set up a scholarship decision making committee and figure out how to have an officer election by mail. We did it on Zoom and it was so energizing to see my friends faces and hear them too.

Then while walking the dog a woman stopped and chatted. I learned that a nearby restaurant has opened an online market along with take out of menu and bar items with free delivery to my senior community. They are even selling toilet paper and Purell wipes! She also mentioned a nearby farm that will sell you a produce box so you don't even have to get out of the car. Great info and it was a fun, rambling chat.

We made a planned call to one of Hubby's three 90+ year old aunts. This one lives alone and is struggling with health issues as well as loneliness. We adore her and are glad we called.

Carrying On - I am trying to identify three important things to get done each day including self-care. Did our March financial summary, cleaned/reorganized our freezer and gave myself a manicure. Hubby cooked a dinner of sweet-n-sour pork over rice using some of the pork tenderloin I cooked a couple of days ago. Not a bad day.

Thankful for - The love and care in my life.

Hope your day was ok and you are well.

Covid-19 Shutdown Diary Day 17: First Zoom board meeting = a chance to see friends

I have decided there is no reason to push myself to be productive each day so am going more with my mood and provide more self-care. I think we may be underestimating just how emotionally wearing this is on us even if it is not consciously bothering us at a given time. On the other hand, I need some structure and a sense that I used the day well. A conundrum.

Connecting while Distancing -

My women's club board entered the world of online meetings this morning and we got the business done that we needed to. All 70+ years old and rather proud of ourselves lol. It was nice to see my friends.

Carrying On - 

Hubby did the Trader Joe's shopping trip and came home with all the stuff on our list to fill in the gaps. He said he only had to wait 20 minutes to get in and the store was well stocked although he didn't check out the paper goods.

It was a beautiful day for being outside so I took a walk down to the rec center to pick up a free surgical mask for each of us. My understanding is that they think the best use of these is if you are coughing and/or sneezing then it keeps the potential virus from becoming airborne and infecting others. It won't protect you from airborne viruses though. I added them to our home healthcare supplies.

Thankful for - 

This lovely cheerful view from my home office window.