Oh, the joys of self-quarantine. Your hands are squeaky clean, the junk drawer and pantry belong on HGTV, the family has taken all of their vitamins and binge watched all the Star Wars and Marvel movies on Disney+ in chronological order…now what?
Although social distancing is protecting you from the coronavirus, and this is a super important measure to help "flatten the curve" of new cases, it’s ok and normal to be feeling a little stir crazy. Give yourself a break!
Here are some ideas to make quarantine as interesting and productive as possible:
- Learn a new language: Download Duolingo, Rosetta Stone, or a similar app to teach yourself a foreign language. You’ll be ready for the next passport trip before you know it!
- Pinterest project (family or solo): How about some homemade lavender body lotion or a DIY river rock doormat (yes, that’s an actual thing). You can even find suggested products that you can sell to make some extra cash. And, if your poorly executed Easter Bunny cake looks more like a pink nightmare, you and your kids can join the hallowed ranks of the Pinterest Fails, and give everyone a much-needed laugh. Nailed it! Or not.
- Audible stories: Homeschool teachers everywhere will love this one. In response to school closures, Audible has granted access to hundreds of free titles.
- Don’t just text or call someone, make plans for a Facetime meal or happy hour. And there’s always Zoom for large book clubs and monthly game nights.
- Let the kids make a dance playlist on Pandora or iTunes and have a dance party in your living room! You might even want everyone to learn a new style of dance on Youtube beforehand. Belly-dancing anyone?
- Picture cleanup: Go through your camera roll to delete unwanted items, then identify your favorite photos to send to Shutterfly (or some other photography products app/website) to make that long-awaited vacation, wedding or baby album.
- Online course: If you have time to binge “Tiger King,” you have time to be a virtual genius. How about a distance education or a continuing education course from UT Arlington? Or you’ll find a wide variety of self-empowerment options with Masterclass.com.
- Let the games begin: Write some new white cards for Cards Against Humanity for your next game night. And speaking of games, this would be a great time to learn poker, chess and other games of skill.
- Donate: Mission Arlington needs soup, ramen noodles, peanut butter, jelly, bread, canned meats, toiletries, dry cereal, rice, and any canned vegetables. Best of all, you don’t have to get out of your car, because their team will come out to you.
- Backyard camping or picnic: Pickup dinner from a local restaurant, then eat under the stars. If no one in your family feels well-versed on the stories of constellations, take turns making them up! Make it into a contest…worst story about Orion is on clean-up duty.
- Start a journal that could make the base for a TV show to vent frustrations: give everyone in it a unique TV show name and persona. It will make reading it in the future that much better.
- More moments of calm: Take mini-meditations throughout the day where you focus on your breath for 5 minutes. Try it at bedtime, while going for a walk, or even when you are doing the dishes. Or try a guided meditation on YouTube.
- Self-spa time: Let’s face it, those eyebrows aren’t going to pluck themselves. Take time to pamper yourself with a mask and other skin care treatments as you relax in a bubble bath.
- Operation: California Closet Reorganize! You’ve always wanted that closet, so bring out your inner Marie Kondo now. Order shoe racks, sort by color or season, whatever…this is your chance to make it Carrie Bradshaw approved. Best of all, you can sort unwanted items into two piles, “To donate” and “To sell,” for later.
- Dress up for a walk: Be the talk of NextDoor when your pooch is decked out in his Chewbacca costume, and while you’re at it, fashion some Princess Leia hairbuns! If you don’t have enough hair, use cinnamon buns. 😊