This week, I was fascinated at the simulations posted by the Washington Post on how a virus (coronavirus or the flu for that matter) are spread. You can see them here:
The coronavirus is everywhere. Schools are closed. Casinos are closed. Churches are streaming services online. Restaurants and bars are closing. College commencement ceremonies are being cancelled. The CDC is warning to avoid gatherings of more than 50 people. We are being told to “flatten the curve” and “stay home.” Sure we have the internet, video games, and Netflix, but eventually, boredom will set in.
I saw something on Facebook this week that read:
“Just thing of all the sit down family dinners that will be happening across America because of this inconvenience. Practices, meetings, and more – cancelled. So many people say they’re ‘so busy’ and now have been forced to slow down. Here’s your moment. Use it wisely. Be intentional. Stay home. Clean a closet. Paint a room. Spend time just sitting and talking.”
There is a lot of truth to that! I am guilty of complaining about not having enough time to do things. On my days off, I don’t relax – I am out trying to accomplish things I don’t have time for during the week. Things get in the way. I get busy – too busy to focus on what really is important. Is work so important that it should take away from time with our family – sorry, bosses, it is not. The structure of the family is hurting, because “family time” is becoming less and less.
“Me time” is also dwindling. You hear all the time how important it is to unplug, and recharge. My doctor says how important it is to find time to do something I enjoy once a week, even if it is only for an hour. The problem is finding that time in a schedule that is already full with other obligations.
Let’s be honest, if I was forced to stay home because my work shut down, I would be freaking out. No work = no money. I have financial obligations. We have cars and a home to pay for. We have groceries to buy. We have a baby to feed. I have child support to pay to be sure my sons are ok. We have the usually monthly bills to pay. My wife is already off work and not being paid, so this potential “stay-cation” can really put me in a state of chaos. I hope it doesn’t happen, but I also 1) don’t want to get sick and 2) get others sick. Whether it happens or not, I have to consider that is a possibility.
So, as I read that quote from Facebook, I began to think about the things I might actually get the chance to do if I was told to stay home for a few weeks. It was quite easy to make the list. Some things are chores or projects I have put off for some time and others are more family/me oriented. Here is a list that I just started jotting down. If you get bored while at home, maybe you can steal some of my items or be inspired to create your own list.
What To Do While on My Forced Stay-Cation
- READ. (The stack of “to-read” books at my house is HUGE).
- Put the clear coat up on the shiplap in the kitchen.
- Exercise. (I never have time for this. “Make time” people say. Ok, I will have some now.)
- Purge. (Old clothes, shoes, papers, etc.)
- Watch movies. (My dad always seems to hand my a bag with DVD’s. I have many of them on a shelf or in a box. What a great opportunity to watch them!)
- Call an old friend. (“I’ll call you” we often say, and then life takes over. Why not take the time to catch up?)
- Scan pictures. (I have a bunch that I have been meaning to scan for some time.)
- Organize my digital music. (I have many CDs that I want to transfer to digital. I also have a hard drive with a variety of random folders and songs. Some songs, I will never play, so I should just delete them)
- Organize my computer files. (So many folders – so little time)
- Go through old radio bits. (I have a hard drive of some of my best bits with my old morning show partner. I keep telling her I will send them to her. Maybe with the extra time, I can get this done.)
- Patch walls and paint. (Long overdue)
- Clean the basement. (Another project that is long overdue)
- Yard work (weather permitting)
- Clean the garage.
- Organize Blog Ideas (Lots of random “thoughts” and “scribbles” in my “To-Blog” Journal.
- Board Games. (Family time – lots of laughs)
- Inventory. (Make a list of valuables and such – just in case)
- Clean out my e-mailbox. (Who knew that some of those things you thought you’d want to read, would end up being something that you never get around to?)
- Print out some of my blogs. (I want to start making a “book” for my kids. Many of these blogs will serve as “chapters”.)
- Sleep. (With a newborn, you gotta take advantage of as much sleep as you can!)
- Organize cupboards. (My wife will oversee this – she is better at it than me)
- Create the Bucket List. (I sorta have one. I just have never written it down.)
- Write letters to my children. (Not sure where I saw this before, but I think this is something I would like to do once a year. Eventually, they will get to read them and hopefully treasure them.)
- Learn a language. (Yeah, I have been saying that for some time. If I have a few weeks, maybe I can actually do it!)
- Unplug. (No phones. No TV. No Internet. Just sit and talk with my family.)
- (a) Take Pictures of Ella. (Cause a new daddy can never have enough pictures of his baby girl.) (b) Take pictures of the boys. (Cause they are growing up too fast!) (c) Take pictures of my wife (Because she is beautiful and I love her)
- Sort pictures and put them all in one place to print out (My phone had a gazillion pictures. I need to send them to Walmart or wherever to print out hard copies)
So, how about you? What are you planning to do with the gift of some extra time? I would love to know what makes your list.