Working Wednesday, April 1, 2020

I know it’s April Fool’s Day, but I think Fate just pulled the ultimate trick on all of us with the virus, so I’m ignoring that. It is the first day of April, so YAY SPRING. Also I just found out there’s something called Viking knitting which does not require knitting needles, so I will obviously be looking into that. Also something called nailbinding which sounds brutal and Nordic. Lucet I already knew about, but still. Evidently there was a lot of crafting between bouts of pillaging. And I may doodle some manuscript illuminations on a specials menu, just to see how that goes.

And in other news, because I’m now obsessing on visuals, I went looking for retro diner fonts that could be used both on as the font for the diner (signs and menu heads) and as a title font, and found this list:

And then lost an hour playing with fonts, which is one of my favorite things to do. (See bottom of post for some possibilities.)

Now I have to find a name for the diner. Something that sounds like a diner name but has some kind of meaning which is going to be hard because I have no idea what this story is really about. I just want the sign and the font for the visuals. And because I love playing with fonts, okay? It’s still work if I enjoy it.

So what are you working on now?

95 thoughts on “Working Wednesday, April 1, 2020

  1. I got a new vacuum cleaner today, so the dust bunnies are quaking in fear. And the fanfiction I’m working on is falling into place beautifully at the moment, so I’m feeling pleased about that.

  2. Teaching my kids. I felt weirdly grateful to talk to my younger son’s teacher last night and have her say “oh, honey, don’t worry about keeping up with that stuff. It’s just to keep them busy.” Which has kind of been my thought all along. I mean, it’s good to have them *not* lose skills, but the school district basically shoved a bunch of worksheets at us and said “here, teach this.” And my teaching brain is like “what is the end goal here? What is the overall philosophy of why we’re teaching these things, in this order, in this way?” And there’s no real clue to that in the information given.

    and yeah, the answer is – there is no real end goal. There is no plan.(Shrug. Typical for our school district, I got to say. ) I think it is broadly related to what the teachers are teaching in the classroom, but this is just what they could scrape up on short notice. Some of it is definitely too easy for the younger son who is ahead in reading and math. And he knows it’s too easy And I got to say, for better or worse, I’ve never been one to just mindlessly teach (or learn!) what is put in front of me.

    For my autistic son in a self-contained classroom, there was even less guidance. It was just “oh browse around on what is a available for the other grades and mix and match what you think will work.” I mean, we can look over his IEP and work backwards from that, I guess? Sorry if I sound grumpy, I’m really not. I’m not mad at the school. I’m not mad at the teachers. This particular situation was hard to predict. I’m just . . . resigned.

    Some of my friends w/full time jobs (!) are doing so much more organized home schooling then I am and I’m just over here like “let’s just do this for an hour a day, if you finish your worksheets early, you can play educational games on the computer. Then when the hour is up, you may go back to watching TV, reading books, swinging on the hammock. Whatever.” I’m sure we will develop more education routines and projects as we go on, but I refuse to make myself crazy for this. Let’s just try to get through the day.

    I did get a little done on the last, last chapter of my huge fanfic project this morning and I would love to get more done. I also want to go for a run.

    1. There are lots of excellent resources available for free currently. We’re officially in school holidays (they brought them forward) but the kids need some punctuation to their day. If you have Facebook, this is the best of the activities I’ve found, 4 interesting exercises a day, it’s free.

      1. Jenny and/or admins, feel free to delete both my comments if I’ve crossed a line. I’m not trying to be grumpy, I just want to make things clear.

        Allanah, I appreciate you’re trying to be helpful, but I am a teacher in my day to day today life. I know how to make a lesson plan. I know how to find educational resources online and honestly, the school has been flooding us with websites and resources. But there’s no rhyme or reason to it. It’s just here, have this this and this and throw it to the wall and see what sticks. There’s no overarching plan to any of it.

        I’ve never been one to be mindlessly busy just to say I’m busy and I’m not about to do that to my kids. That’s just not my style. And that’s what the school is asking me to do. Trust me, I was at a stay at home mom for 10 years and people kept saying to me “you just need to figure out a routine!” And my routine was to mostly take it one day at a time. Nothing else ever really worked for our family. We have some structure, but too much has always stressed out me and the kids.

        I debated even posting what I posted above b/c I know people would try to be well meaning and offer advice and I don’t really need that. I was very intentional in not asking for advice or counsel. I’m healthy, I have enough toilet paper, we are financially secure enough, so I’m coasting on easy street compared to so many people right now. But I’m also less than happy with my situation and I have to human need to vent.

        Also, I’ve refused to go on Facebook since the 2016 election. They are not going to have another second of my attention. Never ever ever.

        I’m sorry if I’m it seems like I’m being snippy with you.That’s not my intention. It’s not about you. We’re all on edge right now. I send you my sincere wishes for health and happiness in this difficult time.

        1. You’ll be pleased to know I can’t give you any advice, not being a mother or a teacher. But I think you’ve got it right. I was listening to this week’s episode of ‘Reasons to Be Cheerful’, which is about how to take care of your kids during lockdown, and the clear message was the most important thing is to help them enjoy this time as much as possible; and for parents to enjoy it as much as possible, too, because that’ll help the children. So, do whatever works best for you all.

          Made sense to me.

        2. Hey no worries. I didn’t mean to upset you. Whatever works for you and your family at this time! It’s all good.
          My kids really liked these activities, but our focus is on entertainment at home, not education.

    2. Our Minister of Education, Angie Motshekga was very, very clear – anything on radio, TV and other media is revision.

      Teaching will happen in the classroom during contact-time based on the amount of time missed from term 2. Fyi we have a calendar school year – January to December.

      1. A regret from my kids’ early years is that I didn’t let them just hang out outside. As a stay at home mom, and, as part of the current world (this was the 1990s, but it was a huge change from the 1950s and 1960s), I felt I was responsible for them at all times. I needed to be with them, making sure they didn’t get hurt.

        If I were to do it all over again, I’d send them out to the backyard and let them whine and steam and fight until they started coming up with other things to do.

        I’m pleased to say they have memories of great times they had behind my back — and those times consisted of important stuff like burying a dead bird and playing hide and seek in the corn rows.

  3. Yesterday I shaved my head to raise money for blood cancer research. The fact of that was blessedly normal, but the experience of shaving my own head when usually (this is my third time) my friends would all take turns doing it was fairly surreal.

    Other than that I’ve been working on my Italian and a previously abandoned shawl. Hopefully the new wool I have ordered will arrive by the time I’m finished with it so I can try my hand at a beanie. I’m going to need one.

    Tomorrow my quarantine ends, so I will have to do the actual work of updating my resume and applying for new jobs. Ugh.

  4. I need to get back to my Italian! We cancelled our trip at Spring Break and are hoping to go in October. We’ll see. . . Even if we don’t get to go, practicing languages is always fun.

  5. Hmmmm… Viking knitting is wirework (jewelry), not anything with yarn, so won’t help with your stash 😂

    And, misnomer again, “nail binding” (nålbinding) has nothing to do with nails or metal but is an old single needle (with eye!) way of making knitted fabrics. They found a child’s sock from Egypt (4th or 5th century BC or something, I forget) that was made using this technique, so it’s been around a long time and is widely scattered. I watched a couple of YouTube tutorials when I first heard about it a number of years ago and it looked like too much work, I’ll stick with my addi clicks, thank you very much…

    Have finished some UFOs (knitting, crocheting and beading) in between “real” work, but have been taking advantage of absolutely glorious spring weather to work around the house. Window washing, cleaning (out) cupboards, washing curtains etc. Air’s chilly but the sun is warm. Am going to spread fertilizer on roses, wisteria, etc. because they are starting to pop out buds.

    I have one more year to retirement and I can tell now, after these weeks, that last year is gonna be a real bitch. 😔

      1. Yes. This is horrible for a lot of people, but by June, I think they’ll have a new normal and be liking it at least a little. This is going to change things.

      2. I love working from home and having done it for so many years now, I can’t imagine being able to fit back into commuter/office worker mode.

        But I’ve always had to fight against the tendency toward agoraphobia that it creates, so the shelter in place thing isn’t helping at all there. And my husband loves staying at home. I’d just gotten us to the point of one genuine out of the house date night per week and then sheltering happened. I’m hoping it won’t be too much work to get us out again at some point months from now, but it might just be.

  6. “I thought I knitted more fishes then that” are words that sound strange out loud. I dug out all my blanket pieces, yay me I’ve knitted lot of things over the years. Have I finished any of them nope. So now is the time to sew up an 80ish square knitted patchwork quilt, a chunky wool fish blanket that doesn’t match (purple, green, mixed colours and teal) what was I thinking, possibly that the teal was on sale (hate it as a fish) A koala and an elephant. All completed UFOs I have to sew up, apart from the fish, if I ditch the teal, I need more fish.

    1. Can you dye the teal with food coloring? (This is assuming you have food coloring.).
      Or put everything in a tea bath so the colors are muted?
      More fish sounds like the last thing you need (g).

      1. I still have chunky wool in the right colours and my needle size is huge, so they don’t take too long to make. We don’t really use food colouring, my sister once tried to make a red velvet cake and almost couldn’t bring herself to eat it, cause she knew how much she needed to put in. She just buys red velvet cake now

        1. Give her some paste coloring as a stocking stuffer. I think originally the “red velvet” was created with chocolate/cocoa and it may not have been that burgundy shade.

  7. I”m working full time from home, and I really am going to hold to the practice of not looking at the news until after the work day. It makes me feel sick, which of course, makes me feel sick, etc. What I AM going to do is order some watercolors from Cheap Joe’s and set them up on the big table, so anyone in the house can try them. I have a bunch, but they’re pretty dried up, so a few fresh tubes will help. Note to self, avoid that indigo, however much you like it on the palette!
    My Song of the Day has about 50 recipients now, and I’m enjoying putting it together, got some requests for Elvis, Anita O’Day so far.

    1. I just read the news and thought, “This is doing me no good.” I know to stay home and away from people until June at least, and the only thing I’ve read that I needed to read was that the CDC is thinking about masks . . . important? Semi-required?

      I have work to do. Get off the net, Jenny. Except for Argh, of course.

      1. Of course! I count on Argh. Yesterday I looked for Working Wednesday, couldn’t find it, and was kind of, well dammit. Then, of course, I realized it was only Tuesday. I usually like Tuesdays, but my attitude is poor.

      2. I am UTTERLY CONFUSED ON THE MASK THING. I cannot figure out for the life of me, and nobody else can either, if there is any actual point to wearing fabric only masks around, other than for purposes of looking like “stay away” and “don’t touch your face.” It seems unclear from all of the studies as to whether or not that actually does anything for germ protection.

        1. There is a purpose. The virus is carried by droplets so if anybody has it, their breathing transmits it. Therefore if anybody who has it is wearing a mask, it cuts down the rate of transmission (doesn’t stop it entirely, but every bit helps). So if everybody wears a mask, whether they have the virus or not, it means everybody is protected, not by their own masks but by the masks of others. And since this virus has a several day period before symptoms appear, a lot of people are spreading it without realizing it.

        2. I’ve finally started getting stuff from my stash together to make some masks.

          I’ve concluded that it’s probably better to wear them than not. Apparently the N95 types have been in use since the ealry ’70’s so cloth surgical masks must be somewhat effective in preventing infections, right?

          I’ve been seeing people wearing them more and more. (Also having flashbacks to M*A*S*H episodes.)

        3. I have this problem too. I’ve been resisting making masks because if they aren’t protecting you they could be giving a false sense of security. And, I don’t like make work. Is this supposed to make me feel like I’m doing something when I’m really not?

          1. No, it’s supposed to cut down on the rate of transmission. If people with the virus wear them, it helps. And since nobody know who has the virus because of the long incubation period, if everybody wears them its safer.

  8. I have been at home since Friday per the governor’s order. Sigh. As a result I’ve been trying to be productive but allowing myself not to be productive all the time. Sometimes we can be very hard on ourselves!

    So, I’ve gone around to the backyard (which is on the other side of a privacy fence from the house, along a major road. Some of the bushes back there are very prolific and send runners up into the trees with great frequency. I trim them back every year – sometimes multiple times. So far, I’ve taken two trips around the corner and have only touched the tip of the iceberg of vegetation that needs to be cut back. The nice thing about the lockdown is that there are fewer cars rushing by me as I work!

    After that, I did crafty things. I continue to work on the corner-to-corner baby blanket. I’ve turned the second corner and as the rows get shorter, the crocheting gets faster.

    I also finished putting together my paper piecing project. It’s a quilt top now that needs to be quilted. (It will go into that pile to be dealt with later.) As I was clearing off the debris from that project, I found my strip of challenge fabric. The challenge is to create a quilted something that uses up the entire strip. I scrolled through some pattern blocks, did some math and came up with a pattern that used every bit (I could have used one more piece!) It was a little complicated to work out, so I had to sew everything together prior to clearing my dining room table to set up my work from home area. It still needs borders, and then to be quilted – but here’s what it looks like now.

    The cats are getting the most out of this stay at home order, with their personal butlers always around.

  9. I’m mostly making masks with (sent out 75 last week!) and trying to focus on the manuscript due May 1, the edits of the book coming out in December that I just got, and the release of the first garlic farm mystery in 3 weeks.

    The mask-making is keeping me sane. The rest, not so much.

  10. When the pandemic began, my wise-ass self bought a six-pack of Corona beer. Actually, they are seven ounce “Coronita Extra” beers, and I drank one so far. Not bad, considering I never developed a taste for beer. That was in March. I’ll have another in April. I hope the pandemic doesn’t outlast my “supply.”

    I’m still “essential personnel,” so I’ll be leaving for work in a few hours. No stops. Most of my shopping is now online, and I bought four more Danger Cove mysteries to have something to read when I finish the currently open “New Heinlein.”

    Be well.

    1. I read an article that yeast is sold out in grocery stores (maybe). The first thought that came to mind was baking bread using the yeast in beer, so unless you want to bake a loaf of bread you’re better off drinking the beer.

      At the end of last summer my husband came home with a vodka laced lemonade in a six-pack. I poured it over ice and added a bit of cherry juice for an hombre effect with a couple of cherries. It was that good. I only have it once a month and there is still a can or two left. Almost time to buy more.

      1. Yeast is sold out in Vancouver area. Just across the border. Are people making bread or beer?

        Unfortunately I dropped a new jar of the stuff. Only one jar left. It’s gold.

      2. You know, when everyone suddenly started baking I thought, “they’re gonna run out of baking supplies,” and sure ’nuff….

      3. There’s a wine bottle on a shelf. One of these days I need to see what kind, but not before the beer is gone. I never mix wine and beer in the same month.

        I’m home again, already. I went in to prepare monthly and quarterly reports and read my work email. Included in the email was a letter telling anyone who pulls me over that I am essential and allowed to commute, because Virginia’s Governor finally said stay at home to everyone else. My coworker is there, now, so I was redundant, once the reports were sent.

        Be well, everyone!

  11. My younger son works for a large grocery store chain delivering groceries. The clients were once evenly divided between corporate and residential, now its all residential. He also tells me that he takes his temperature 2 or 3 times a day, too. When I talk to him he says that he is going to come to see us by coming up on the porch and knocking on the window and giving us a wave. Another son has been laid off from work and I don’t think he has ever collected unemployment before as he is struggling through the hoops of the system. Third son works for the transit authority on late shift overnight. No matter how old they are a parent always worries.

    Being that it is April Fools Day I happened to look out the window this morning and saw much to my surprise that the town was dropping the moorings out in the bay. I couldn’t believe it. Town life is moving on.

  12. My creative endeavors are pitiful I mean PITIFUL compared to most of you guys.

    Our vacuum cleaner was developing indigestion from masses of cat hair, so we looked all over the house for that long metal s-shaped hook that I had as a child to make potholders with. Neither the hook nor the small metal loom/frame thing could be found, so my husband in frustration ordered a new kit from Harrisville Designs ( and it was exactly like my childhood set, only clean and bright. So I’ve been making potholders.

    “Big deal” you say, but… potholders!

    I’ve made 8 so far and it’s very satisfying. Oh, and the vacuum cleaner is healthy now, and the hook did it all unfazed. One wash and it’s ready again for more potholders! I thank the COVID-19 virus for it all.

    (And I love the fonts Jenny found! My favorites are Cocktail Script and Refreshment Stand.) Our local diner is called The Tastee Diner, if that’s an option.

  13. At a prior job, 25 years ago, across the street from my workplace was a diner in a basement of an old building. It was a hidden treasure simply called “The Lunch Counter” even though it was open 24/7.

  14. I sent my edit off to its author yesterday, so am having a weekend. I’ve got a couple of proof-reading jobs to follow on, which is good. I’ve overdone the self-isolating just in case this very mild bug I’ve been resisting was the plague. I’m pretty certain it isn’t; but I haven’t left the house for a week, and that was depressing. Finally went for a walk this afternoon, and am feeling a lot more human.

    This next week I’m prioritizing a daily walk; planning to stick to four hours a day on the proofs, and spend time gardening, getting the shed ready to paint, and phoning friends. Maybe persuading some of them to try video calls, since the UK lockdown seems to exclude any social contact at all if you live alone; which even for a hermit like me is a bit much.

    Oh, also want to catch up with ‘Surprise Lily’, which somehow felt too much when I was full-on with my edit.

  15. Is Valhalla Diner too obvious?

    And I am torn between the Flamingo and Sparkly font. (Sparkly might be a bit too Dream of Jeannie).

    My big Working Wednesday news is I wrote the first 1000 words on Book Nine yesterday. I LOVE starting a new book, and can’t wait to get back to it later today.

    1. I also love starting a new book and the Sparkly font.

      But I must be practical . . .

        1. I like sparkly things?

          Oh, the book? Infinite possibilities and it’s all playing around, no investment. I told Krissie it’s like falling in love. In the beginning you laugh all the time and it’s exciting, and everything’s new. And then at some point you realize you’re going to have to do some serious work to keep it all going.

          1. Because this is my profession, the way I earn my living, so just noodling around with beginnings forever means I would starve. Okay, not starve but eat more peanut butter.

      1. It’ll be hard to choose the font until you have the diner name, but one more vote for the sparkly.

    2. I am so happy someone else thought Sparkly WAS I Dream of Jeannie! First thing I thought of when I saw it

        1. So i was curious (as one gets) and exercised my google-fu to look at the logos for both Bewitched and I Dream of Jeannie. Still seems to me it’s more like Bewitched. Check it out and let me know what y’all think? Because this is a BURNINGLY important question. Hee hee hee!

          1. I did not do any research ahead of my comment, but I am willing to bow before your great knowledge. 🙂 LOL! To be honest I am HORRIBLE at that sort of trivia so I am more than likely wrong…

  16. My favorite fonts are Leftovers and Sparkly. How’s that for schizophrenic?

    My goal this week was to send postcards to all my friends going nuts during lock down. I didn’t manage that, but I did mange to email my nephew and his wife as soon as I got the pictures of them and their new daughter. I’d love to send them more, but I don’t have a street address for them in Thailand. Oh, well, his sister’s kid (in Switzerland) has done just fine without cards and gifts from me so I suppose that this little cutie pie will, too. I just miss the contact.

  17. Yesterday I worked on the day job. It was surprisingly busy for a change, and I was actually able to meet my minimum bi-weekly requirement of minutes. Of course, right now that minimum is out the window but it was still nice to get a half decent paycheque. I had 2 days where I had only 1 or 2 jobs for very few minutes and I was stressed. Yesterday we also got the call from Paul’s foreman saying that he was taking a 10% pay cut. We have been expecting it and it better than being laid off. Paul also passed along a few cost-saving ideas he’d had, and they were pretty well received so he was happy.

    Yesterday, in the lags between jobs coming in, I listened to the audio book of October Man. I have just more than an hour and a half left and I’m enjoying it.

    Craft-wise, I’m working on making a wire tree. I’m thinking of bringing my stuff down to the office to work on during the aforementioned lags. Seeing as I’ve only got about 6 wires cut, I think I could put a little more energy into it.

    I’m also thinking of making a patchwork lap quilt with plain squares of fabric. I’ve wanted to make a large quilt that in my head I call Farmland from the Air but I am being prudent since I have no quilting experience and starting small and simple rather than jumping into the metaphoric deep end like I usually do. Paul is going to make me a square to use as a template so I don’t have to buy one and wait until May for it to come from Amazon.

    Another thing we’ve been doing is watching The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel on Prime. There’s a lot of swearing, much more than I was expecting actually, but it’s hilariously funny (repeat after me, OWC has no sense of humour). We binged season 1 last week and have seen season 1 episode 1 and maybe 2 so far this week.

    We have been trying to watch Ozark, which is amazing, but neither one of us has the attention span or brain power for it now. It is a show you want to watch when things are good so you can be glad you are not laundering money for a Mexican drug cartel and dealing with crazy heroin suppliers.

  18. I’m working on catching up here (I have a few days to go, at least) and going through my email. Once it hit a certain number of unread messages, I got overwhelmed. I’m also working on staying off the news. But I spent way too much time looking at whether I should be wearing a DIY mask and then how to make one. (I don’t sew. At all.) I ended up with a decent one for our grocery trip this morning (we haven’t been out in 2 weeks, and now I’ll spend the next 2 weeks worrying). I ended up not wearing it though, because I was afraid it would lead to my touching my face to make sure it was still on/in position. I’m also working on not touching my face so much—and if anyone has any hints, I’m all ears!

    1. There’s a you tube video on make a mask from the bottom of a T-shirt, no sewing, that’s kind of good.

      1. This looks useful – especially since I’ve got a stash of vintage hankies and plenty of old tights. Thanks. (I can see masks are going to be the next thing. Any minute now.)

      2. Genius. I haven’t wanted to waste my time making masks that may or may not be useful when I have years of sewing to catch up when I finally get laid off, but this I could do. Easy to wash without having to disentangle the ties from the rest of the laundry, and very useful during my personal pollen season.

  19. I’m working on not letting this never ending virus news get me down. Only news once in am and once in pm. Reading. Walk everyday. Work. Studying uplifting psalms. Remembered visiting mother before she came to live with us, popped in unannounced. Mom was dressed in a lovely two pc outfit, hair done and having a coffee while reading her bible. Commenting on how why she was dressed up, she said it was Sunday and she was having church. Right.

    Mom kept up her routine and felt better. And she had cookies. I miss my mother’s cookies. So glad she doesn’t have to live through this.

    So, I decided a little mascara, colour on the lips and a different perfume every day is making me feel alive and invincible in my isolation. Catching a glimpse of myself in the mirror I thought “There I am.” Not that I lost myself.

    Still work in the home office every day. About 4 hours and a bit. Hours are reduced. Going to get out the sewing machine. Maybe FaceTime the granddaughters and have a sewing lesson.

  20. I’ve done a decent amount of exercise every day for the last week, mostly a 4-5km brisk walk. And nothing else creative or organised, but I’m pretty happy about the exercise.

  21. Just seen the UK government’s hideous new ad campaign, saying if you go out you’re killing people. I’m afraid this is going to deter people from going out once a day for exercise, and lead to depression and other problems.

    1. I cannot go outside and take a walk any more. I really can’t. I cannot NOT think about all of the statistics about droplets of virus traveling 26 feet and all the other crazy shit. I just don’t want to go out at all. I would rather be depressed from a lack of sunshine and exercise than miserably sick and dead.

      Been listening to the Ouch podcast, which is a BBC podcast for disabled people, and they’re all talking about how the government has told them not to go outside AT ALL until this is over.

    1. I like dark jazz too. But sparkly seems very appropriate for Cheryl. I can see her running a diner with a simple name, something like Good Eats.

  22. I’m a huge Sparkly fan!

    I got a scholarship from a very generous person for an online course. It’s the only thing that’s truly getting my brain to stop focusing on the pandemic. When I’m in the course, I forget everything else. A Sane Brain Saver.

  23. I love Leftovers. Sparkly I immediately thought of I Dream of Jeannie! Work is still super busy but I’ve worked from home for years and became basically a hermit that only goes out to church on Sunday or when Hubby drags me, so not much has changed for me.

  24. First, I have a couple of bandanas. One red, one blue, both look like the ones worn by the bloods or the crips. I wear the wrong one, I die from a drive-by instead of covid-19. Never mind, I own a baklava. That will do the job. Also a ski mask sort of thing.

    But second, I have a little confession. I have been procrastinating. (No shock there, right?) I told the dotter I needed to wash four loads of laundry. She told me the dryer just died. I said, “No worries – let’s dash to Lowes and get a replacement. Better, you go and have them load it into the pick-up.” I had the money, so why not? The SIL went. The dryer is in. Three loads of laundry are done. And folded. And put away.

    With that momentum, all the dishes got done, not that there were many. Then the trash went out. Then all the recycling was gathered into an enclosed pile for Friday/Recycle Day. The vacuum is plugged in. Of course, I found another load of laundry.

    Backing up a step, I had a huge pile of unanswered mail. Now I don’t, but the shredder needs emptying. There are 56 half liter bottles of water on my “dining room” table, said dining room being the air space above the table and the black iron lawn chair that sits with it. Ah – 24 stowed, 32 to go.

    I’ll vacuum. There aren’t enough square feet of floor space to make it a challenge. Then I’ll Swiffer the cobwebs and dust stuff. Then it will be time to Throw Stuff Away. (Past time, but like I said – I have been procrastinating.)

    Be Well, Arghers!

  25. Today was husband’s last day of work, so I made brownies since all the other retirment celebrations have been canceled.

  26. Ironically, I did in fact go to work today. The artists’ cooperative shop I run in upstate NY has been closed since Friday the 20th, but I went in to do the artists’ checks for the month (such as they were) and catch up on paperwork. Who knew I would miss my job this much?

    That and running errands and such (including stopping by to visit my former brother in-law/friend who is dying from end stage cancer…I wanted to wait until it had been two weeks since I’d been out and about, for the most part, but didn’t want to wait too long, because, well) used up all my energy for the day. So working on the writing will have to wait until tomorrow.

    I like sparkly. Which isn’t like me at all 🙂 I’m kind of the anti-sparkly.

  27. I’ve noodled at a couple simple, soothing watercolors and focused on doing the paying work quickly, before companies decide they can’t pay.

    My nieces and nephews from across the country have collaborated on funny videos, so I think it’s time I get my generation in on the act. Maybe a Brady Bunch parody! Lots of fun to think about on the daily walk–even as I do the avoidance dance with oncoming pedestrians.

  28. The fonts make me want to have a Lily-life in the era when the fonts were new. Great Googly and atomic dreams and all. I don’t know how a Viking would fit though.

    (Maybe there is one — I’m behind!)

  29. “Cheryl’s Beef & Bacon Bazaar”
    She’ll be changing it on account as her new veganism, but until she does…

  30. I was doing better before the furlough got extended to a at-this-point-unknown date. I do pretty well during most of the day (walks, projects, ghostwriting, skype), but there’s always that one hour somewhere in the day where I feel untethered in a world that’s gone strangely dark and distant on me. And then I move through it and I’m fine.

    My dad picked up takeout for us the other day, and we sat 6 feet away in a park near my house, and he talked about the time he got laid off and how it shook his vision of himself, but it’s ok to ask for help, and that’s what unemployment is for. I definitely lucked out in the family department.

  31. Yesterday I was fine until late evening when I ate all the things and sent my blood sugar soaring. Today I’m teary, partially because I failed yesterday and my doctors will know. Partly because I’m not really very good at all this isolation stuff. You’d never know I was an introvert.

    I think I expect to be productive with all this time on my hands and while I DID ALL THE THINGS on Tuesday, yesterday I did almost none of the things. Except to play with mosaics and spend a couple of hours on my patio talking with a friend. She’s been in quarantine and I’ve been in quarantine and we stayed far apart. Maybe I should just chalk up yesterday to a mental health day and cut myself a break.

    Like Deb, I’m surprised how much doing my job, even from home, makes me feel productive. I never thought I’d miss it. But I’m on every email like butter on bread. Like so many others, my self-worth seems to be tied to my employment. This is not something I really knew about myself.

    1. I think a lot of people aren’t being productive. Big plans, not a lot done.
      Here’s the thing: This is a massive, massive change with huge consequences and it’s going to take months to work through all the aspects. Until there’s a vaccine, this is just the way it is. But the idea that we’ll all instantly plant victory gardens and make masks and adapt without trauma is just not logical or helpful. I like being alone, so I don’t have any problem with the isolation, but the sheer weight of the situation, the way the world is changing, the number of old friends who have gotten in touch, this is not my world any more, and it’s going to take me awhile to settle into this and make it mine. So I am not beating myself up for not getting anything done. This is going to take me a minute. Or twelve. Or possibly days. Whatever, we’ll adapt to this, too, because that’s what human beings do.

      As for self-esteem, it’s tied to work, not employment. That is, I’ve had jobs I hated that did nothing for my self-esteem and things that I’ve crocheted that made me feel like I was incredible. Find something like that and do it, even if it’s giving the dog a bath (something I must do soon x 3). And instagram it so we can see it.

      1. Yes, this! I’m used to working from home, I’m used to battling isolation, but that was all without the threat of a deadly disease and total global economic collapse hanging over me. It’s a bit much, to say the least.

        1. Yep, that’s exactly how I feel. Having trouble concentrating on anything. My individual situation is fine (I’m lucky) but the global situation is a bit much.

  32. When my first child was small, we’d stop for breakfast for lunch (after swimming lessons at the YMCA) at the Sunshine Diner. We called it “Basket full of toys” diner because they had (you guessed this already) a basket full of toys for small impatient people to play with until their pancakes arrived. I remember they were delighted to accept the McD’s Happy Meal toys for the basket, and we were allowed to take home one particularly important little green pick-up truck on a very difficult day. Both of us remember the place with such pleasure, 24 years later!

  33. The absence of Pangur — maybe Pangur hasn’t shown up yet in this life and Lilly senses that she’s missing something and doesn’t know what it is. Or maybe Pangur has just shown up and Lilly is suddenly aware of her past lives. Or something like that.

  34. Textiles! This I can contribute to!

    Did you know that Viking sails were made from wool (treated with tar to waterproof them, from memory, but Definitely Wool) that was all spun by hand with a handspindle?
    They had not only the sails they used, but a spare set as well.

    That makes for an enormous contribution from the community towards each group going viking.

    Oh, and I’m not sure if they’re entirely accurate, but google Viking Combs to see how they processed the washed wool so that they could spin it. Absolutely lethal…

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