Staying Home, Saving Lives - A Covid19 Diary, Week Two

Our new normal continues. Days spent at home, not seeing our friends face to face, not going into the workplace or popping to the shops whenever we need to pick something up.

In the world outside the death toll is rising and the numbers of people sick are only the tip of the iceberg. In many ways, I'm almost glad to stay home, where I have at least a small chance of burying my head in the sand (or under a duvet) and blocking out the fear and anxiety that swamps me whenever I read or watch the news.

It hasn't been the easiest week as the novelty of having the kids at home has worn off slightly and I'm feeling the strain of keeping everyone fed, entertained and happy.


Home learning activities are still proving to be fun but I'm struggling at managing the tasks for Lily and Ollie's different age groups. Both relish having my attention, but I can't easily teach Ollie his phonics and Lily her reading comprehension at the same time. It's definitely a challenge!

We have good days and bad days. On the good ones I feel like I achieve something, the kids enjoy their activities, their exercise and cooking. On the bad days I feel like a complete and utter failure, incapable of keeping my family looked after, let alone happy and progressing as normal. Today, Ollie wanted to do a spellings test like Lily, so I gave him some key words to do, all great until he got the very last one wrong. Despite getting 9/10 it just wasn't good enough for him and he cried and screamed for 15 minutes straight. By which time, I was ready to call it a day.

It was 10:30.

We're still reading The Land of Roar by Jenny McLachlan and it is proving so popular we are also reading it during the day at any available opportunity. We've been working some more on our own fantasy lands, creating characters on the computer and then writing character descriptions. We've also been using the Writing Challenge prompts from school to feed into our own storytelling and ideas. I've also set aside time for us to write to friends and family, thinking that receiving something in the post might brighten their day. Everyone loves receiving happy mail right?

For PE we've been continuing with Oti Mabuse dance classes. Instead of learning a different one each day, Lily is working on perfecting her routine to the 'Bare Necessities'. Even Matt has been joining in! Oliver only wants to dance along when he can wear his Bear onesie.

On Thursday we had a walk around the neighbourhood for our daily exercise, delivering a bottle of wine to a friend in need and some chocolates to the teachers holding the fort at school for key worker's children. When we were there Lily picked up a couple of books that were to be donated to charity and enjoyed Anne Fine's Diary of a Killer Cat so much that she finished it in one day.

As someone who isn't very good at Maths, I was worried about my ability to teach the kids this at home. I much prefer doing English, Science, History or various projects. However, I signed up the kids to the Maths Factor by Carol Vorderman and they are loving it so far. They've only just started and so the lessons are quite basic (the sessions are teaching Ollie to count to ten, he can count to 100 already) but I think the practice is still good for them and I expect they'll be more challenging soon.


As a family, our enthusiasm for constant cleaning and chores is waning this week! Instead, we made a start on tidying the garden on Sunday, enjoying the bright but brisk spring days whilst we have them. We also had a family walk in the woods near us, the kids enjoying the time to play in the trees and Matt and I enjoying just being out and enjoying a relatively 'normal' activity.

The kids do still love to cook and with a *nearly* full cupboard and freezer, we've been able to have some really tasty meals this week, including a Greek-style gyros with homemade tzatziki. The next day we used the leftovers for a yummy lunch that we could all share in, a pleasant change from cheese sandwiches with a packet of crisps.


Truth be told, we are watching a lot of TV! Lily enjoyed watching Malory Towers on iPlayer and is now working her way through the Tracey Beaker series again. Ollie likes to watch the various Andy Adventures and the Numberblocks, currently giving us a break from Paw Patrol and Fireman Sam!

In the evenings, Matt and I don't have one thing to completely binge at the moment and so instead we're watching the second series of Liar, the latest Race Around the World and dipping in to Netflix's Tiger King - it's way to bizarre for me to watch in one sitting!

Similarly, I finished reading Hold Back the Tide in just over 24 hours, sobbing at the ending. I've now moved on to reading Heart of Mist which was free with my Kindle Prime and worth a try! I haven't had much time to read uninterrupted at the moment, I'm missing the chances I'd have to read whilst the kids were at school.


It's now nearly impossible to get a slot for home delivery with any of the big supermarkets and so this week I braved a trip to Asda. I can't remember a time when I've been that stressed out shopping for food and household supplies! On the upside, I got most things I wanted and most people were adhering to the 2 metre social distancing measures put in place.

I'm hoping that if we eat sensibly then the shop should last us over a week, so it'll be a while before I have to venture out again. In the meantime, we've had some tasty meals and far too many snacks!

Oh, and I managed to purchase a 24 pack of loo roll, which means that not only are my fears of being toilet paperless are alleviated, but I also feel like I've won the lottery...


There have been a few birthdays this week and I'm feeling a bit sad for the family and friends who can't celebrate as normal. I've been chatting with friends about the parties and social events we'll all have 'when this is over' and it still seems quite far away.

FaceTime and similar tools are great, it's great to be able to see someone's face when you're chatting.

But it just isn't the same as being there in person.

Stress Levels

My stress and anxiety are still keeping me up at night and dominating my thoughts during the day. I've cried more this week than last week and have had headaches for the last couple of days. I'm glad it's the weekend, not that it really makes much difference as we can't go anywhere, but at least Matt is around and we can do more as a family.

Next week is meant to be the Easter Holidays. I'm gutted that we can't go back to Warwick Castle with out rainy day guarantee this weekend as planned. It was something we were all looking forward to, by the time we're out of lockdown our re-entry would have expired which is terribly disappointing. I know that in the grand scheme of things, this isn't important, but I'm still a bit sad about it all.

I guess 'sad' is how I'd some up my feelings for the week. There have been many good points but I'm definitely not feeling as positive as I was last week. I'm a lot more emotional and tearful than I have been, the positive and nice 'stuff' just as likely to make me cry as the bad bits.

If you want to read about our first week, you can here.
Check back next week for a new update!
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