Carrying On

It has been seven weeks since my last outing with friends, and I am hitting a wall.   The only activity we’ve had is going to the post office and grocery store once a week, otherwise we are at home.  We did take a short drive to see the apple blossoms, but we were a bit too late for them.  I’ve tried my best to find different things to do, ways to fill the time, creative ideas to try to inspire and help me keep from pulling my hair out in boredom.  I’ve done a bit of photography and gardening, a LOT of sewing and quilting, and a fair amount of cooking and baking.  I have enjoyed watching spring bring warm days and green leaves to the landscape.  But some things are becoming a chore instead of a diversion, like the applique work I’ve been doing on a quilt repair.

May in the Garden at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

I have lost count of the fun trips and outings, dinners with friends and club activities canceled. We did a Zoom call with some of our MINI club friends recently, just to have a bit of fun since we all should have been at Fontana Village for a multi-day event. Last year was such fun, with drives and bingo night, dinners and drinks with friends outside on warm spring evenings.  Each of us was thinking of and talking about what we would have been doing that night if we had been able to have the event.  It is so disappointing not to be able to do it this year.

MOTD Weekend at FromMyCarolinaHome.com

The parks and trails are still closed, so we cannot go hiking.  Even the Arboretum is closed for now.  This photo from the waterfall at Graveyard Fields makes me want to go up there again, and hopefully soon we will be able to do a little hiking, even if we have to wear a mask.

Graveyard Fields - 13 waterfall

I talked about this in late March, and decided that the lack of something to look forward to was part of the problem.  So, I made some goals for myself, and posted them.  I decided it was time to take a look at where I am, and see if there has been progress –

  1. Deep clean the kitchen, run the oven cleaning cycle, wash cabinets.  Sharpen all the knives.  Weed out utensils I never use for donation.  Go through the spices and toss everything out of date. – Done
  2. Flip my closet to spring, trying on everything, and compiling at least one bag of things to go to the thrift store when they open again.  You can do this too, see my system on my post What’s In Your Closet? – Done, although it was a bit depressing to take out pretty spring clothes and know that I have no place to wear them.
  3. Tackle the last of my mother’s papers and mementos for sorting, storage, or throwing away. – Mostly done, shredding will take a few more days.
  4. Clean the windows, including lubricating the tracks for the casement windows and vacuuming out the outside sills where dirt collects. – Started, but not yet completed.
  5. Clean out all my old magazines, catalogs and other detritus from my sewing shelves, organize what I want to keep, and recycle the rest.  I’ll use the same plan as I did in my Organizing Recipes post. – Not started
  6. Finally, go through the photographs and organize them at least into years, topics or places, scanning the precious ones that I want to be sure to keep just in case they deteriorate. – Not started

Then, I planned to spend each day in my sewing and crafting space, and a bit in the kitchen, with some goals there as well.  Here’s how I did over the past seven weeks.

  1. Finish the quilt repair I have to do by working on it at least 30 minutes a day.  It is a hand repair with a lot of patches to do, so it will take weeks. – Finished this week, will post it soon.
  2. Find an embroidery or hand stitching project to begin. – Not done, as the repair in goal #1 is all the hand work I can do at this time.
  3. Sew the next four blocks in the Vintage Christmas Quilt Along.  Write those posts and schedule for the fourth Monday in April and May. – Finished April and posted, will get to May soon.
  4. Quilt the next Quilt of Valor in the queue. – DoneQuilt of Valor
  5. Add borders to Scrap Dance Twist and write the next steps.  Quilt and bind it when the QOVs are done. – In progress, binding almost finished, label and hanging sleeve to go
  6. Make my Coronacation Placemat and write that post. – Done
  7. Begin a quilt for Hands2Help. – Not started
  8. Make some cards for friends, spread cheer wherever I can. – Happy Mail sent
  9. Leave lots of comments on the blogs I follow, to keep up the connections and feeling of community. – Trying to, but so many blogs that I follow have dramatically reduced the number of posts, or stopped posting at all.  Not as many readers are leaving comments on my posts either, so perhaps everyone is bored of being on the computer.
  10. Plan a virtual lunch each week, and learn how to use a video chat app on the tablet. – Learned Zoom, had a couple of video chats, called a bunch of friends on the phone.
  11. Develop a new recipe. – DoneGinger Chicken with Yellow Squash

Apple Blossoms 2016 at From My Carolina Home

So, now what?  I’ll continue to plod along on the projects I haven’t finished as we have made the decision to stay home at least to June and likely beyond, regardless of what the state says we can do.  I’ll try to come up with some new ideas to help pass this trying time.  I’ll keep posting, and hoping for some online conversation.  Please comment and let me know how you are doing, how you are filling your days.

72 thoughts on “Carrying On

  1. Hi Carole enjoyed reading what you have been up to and seeing your posts. I decided to get lots of jobs done in our home!!! DH and Eldest dug the front garden up and built a wall to make more room on our drive to park cars as we sometimes now have five to park at home!!! This then led for them tidying the garage and our store room off it. Which then led to tidying the attic. We also did lots in the garden especially sorting out some trees and trimming them. I also got all the Spring Cleaning done with everything being cleaned, washed and ironed to an inch of its life!!! I have also been baking, making my own bread, trying new dinner recipes, sortinging my quilting out and getting some done and getting on with our Boys memory books.

    I cannot understand it when I see people saying they are bored in Lockdown!!!

    Stay safe, Hugs & Love, Susie x

    1. Ingrid

      Hello Carole, please know that your blog posts fill us with hope, inspire us with ideas and get us moving onto old projects we should finish and new ones we need to start! You’re an absolute inspiration for sure. I’ve been quilting like a mad woman since the lockdown and here in Melbourne, Australia we’re taking it VERY slowly regarding opening life up again. I much prefer a slower approach to such things as the dangers far outweigh people’s boredom! Yes, these are certainly challenging times, but they also highlight all that is truly important, the small things. We constantly hear people complaining about not having enough time for this or that, well this is the time to change old habits that don’t suit and put in place new ones that will help us cope better when we do hit the ground running again. Life is too short, there is ALWAYS something to do, so I best get back to doing it. Once again, your blog posts are wonderful so keep up all your good works. Xxx

  2. karenfae

    I have done some of the things on your list – I take care of my closet in the same way and have bags for goodwill to be dropped off at some point – last year I did the kitchen cabinets and got rid of dishes and pots and pans I do not use – it is amazing how many pots and pans can gather up in 40 years in one house. I’m getting to that point of please let me go take a hike at the trails I love!! But I know I need to be safe I have autoimmune diseases but gosh I would love to get out more than once a week to the grocery store and I know I could be ordering on line for that and pick up I did once but rather go inside and see what I want after the veggies I got were not that great.

  3. shoshana

    i may not be so good about leaving comments, but your pictures are totally heartwarming for me, thank you so much for keeping posting them

  4. I can only imagine how difficult this is becoming after 7 weeks, but if you have to be confined at home, you have an absolutely lovely place to do so! We manage a big ranch so things haven’t changed much for us.It’s business as usual and we’re heading into our Spring Cow works next week. That means I’ll be in the kitchen cooking for a crew of cowboys. Virus or not, ranch life continues. Here’s hoping things settle down and that you’ll soon be able to resume your regular activities.

  5. vivian383

    Oh my ! Such energy and determination to tackle your spring cleaning and organization. You put me to shame in tackling chores and whatnot. I went the other way and decided to treat the long lockdown in our section of Canada as a vacation instead. I quilted and sewed and made masks, and scrub hats and donated them. Did some mending of things that have waited a very long time for attention. Then slowly after our winter passed and my garden has finally warmed up a bit I have started to clear off the winter debris. But during this time of world crisis I have been using my time walking my neighbourhood, waving at friends still inside trying to keep in contact while maintaining safe distance! I should say as a stroke survivor I only have about 6 hour productive time a day. It was my choice to spend it doing things that I love.

  6. stephzw

    I do read your post every day. However I do not always leave a post. I feel, perhaps wrongly, that I have not too much to contribute. That being said you do have a long list of things you want to accomplish. I do have one, Defrost my freezer for the summer, It is old, but still works, just like me..

  7. Cindy

    I’ve been on mask-er-aid. Made over 250. I’m pretty sure I have fulfilled my requests thankfully because I really didn’t like making them until I figured out a system and chain pieced. I also have made a house block every day of isolation as a memory (? LOL) I used 1/2 charm square for the roof then my 2 1/2″ strips for the sides and door. It’s very quick and actually fun. I thought I invented it, then saw that others were doing it also. Both have helped tame the scraps. I’ve been listening to audio books and re-listening our church service. I have had 2 cry days, because of grandkids, but other than that I have been really good. Delivered May Mask-ets with flowers from the yard and it felt good to get back to the good ‘ole days. I also, plan to stay put until the end of June as I don’t quite know what to believe anymore.

  8. We’re definitely sensing a shift in attitude around here, seeing more people out, hearing more traffic on the highway just a few feet from our house. We continue to shelter, but I think many are getting restless. We have kept our outings to grocery store runs and drives. You have been very thoughtful and thorough, keeping lists of things to do. I have put off going through things, since I have no room to store the items to donate, and I think the thrift shops and Goodwills, etc. will be inundated when this is past! I agree with you on the sadness about spring clothing. I’m getting tired of my home clothes! Maybe I should just start dressing up for dinner on the deck 🙂

  9. Debbie B

    Welcome to May. I can’t believe it’s May already. I do read your posts daily, but I don’t comment too much. But I do enjoy what I read here. It’s been quiet here and some days not a lot happening. I am envious of your cleaning mission. I need to do more of that. I’m learning all about my new sewing machine. Lots to learn. I have been doing some quilting and piecing on Hospice quilts and joined in on Gudrun’s Quarantine quilt along yesterday. It’s coming along nicely. Love the pictures your post. They are great!

  10. Georgia Kirby

    Hi, Carole, I’ve been reading your daily blog for some time, but never posted before. I can’t tell you how much I have enjoyed your wonderful pictures of your flowers and beautiful surroundings! What a lovely springtime you are enjoying!! We have not progressed to that point yet here in Colorado, but lately the days have been warmer and the leaves and spring flowers are beginning to bloom.
    I have tried to stay busy too and miss meeting with friends, my quilt guild, church, etc. but recognize the necessity of the “staycation.” At my age (85), the virus would probably be a death sentence.
    Baking (when I can find yeast), cleaning, quilting and sewing masks, plus reading a ton of books just about sums it up for me. I’m in awe of your energy! Keep going!!

  11. patsystitch@gvtc.com

    I read all your post but realized that I haven’t commented like I usually did. Why? Sorry, will do better.
    I have made masks, a quilt for our Great Grandson and put together quilt kits from my stash. The kits were really full to do. Now I have several quilt kits to keep me busy.
    I will be doing some of the chores you have in your list.
    I am still behind on the Twist QAL but am loving it.
    Keep posting, it makes my day!

  12. Oh …I would love to be able to hit ‘like’ on some of your comments. Every one is so busy and doing what ever. If the first photo is your yard…goodness what a beautiful place to be cooped up. We are all pretty tired of this situation but guess we still need to keep at it even though it is the pits.

  13. Julie

    While I always read, don’t comment much. As someone who has spent my life social distancing, this time is not that different for me except for official closures. Also, I see more people outdoors on trails/in parks during the week than previously when they were at work. Quilting has suffered at the expense of mask making but that has been time well spent. Yesterday I finished a Covid-19 quilt top, each block made of fabric used for a mask. I’m terrible about labeling my quilts, some things in life can remain a mystery, but this one will be labeled to document this special time.

  14. Hi Carole! This is Susan in Wisconsin…just letting you know that I read each post on your blog, but don’t often comment. I have noticed too, that views on my own blog, Facebook posts and even email have all diminished as the weeks wear on. I agree with you…I think the internet is beginning to wear thin with people as the sole means of contact with the outside world. I have stayed busy…I am a quilter and a scrapbooker and have worked on smaller projects in both areas. I also made masks for all family and friends that needed them. I’m just finishing up a personalized Eagle Scout quilt for my grandson. I just hope he will be able to achieve his goal as planned this summer! I’m busy with a couple of quilt-alongs, so that is fun making blocks each week. These are my “Corona Quilts” and will be named as such. I chose fun, springtime fabrics to help lift spirits. I’m also making a Corona scrapbook to document our own personal journey through this. My husband and I are also renovating our hallway bathroom. We are doing the demo, painting, floor and fixtures ourselves, leaving the new shower install to professionals. There is only so much a 67 year old body can do, and it was much easier in younger days. I also assemble one 1,000 piece jigsaw puzzle per week. Today I will post my week 7 puzzle for friends on Facebook. I commiserate with you about the cancellation of so many things that were planned. For us, it was a weekend in Minneapolis for my husband’s birthday, an Alaska land/sea cruise, plays at local community theaters, quilt shows, a scrapbooking weekend retreat. What we really miss most is dinner out…we are both getting tired of cooking and we have dishpan hands from doing dishes so much! But, we are healthy and well, and given the severity of this virus, makes it all worth it. Hang in there, Carole, have your morning coffee on your beautiful porch, breath in the mountain air and daydream about happier days to come! I’m with you in spirit.

  15. Rosemaryflower

    you are doing okay. At least being productive.
    I am being ever so slightly productive. Mostly being lazy, tired of shopping in a mask, tired of sanitizing everything so I can take care of daddy and hubbs.
    The grand girls give me joy.
    I am happy to see your organized plans and accomplishments.
    It is difficult to stay focused but that is the only way we can physically feel there is a way out of this horrid pandemic. I have been treadmilling and working out a lot
    We will get through this and it will be historic….

  16. June Neigum

    Went strawberry picking yesterday. Making preserves from my mom’s old recipe. I attended an online class from the Virtual Quilt Show Saturday. It was fun and learned alot. I started a list too. All the quilting things are going well. The closet cleaning and kitchen cleaning, not so much.

  17. Donna

    Hi Carole, I am new to your site. I love your garden. I would like to ask each of you to add something love saving to your list. Please get a mammogram. I am working on my second year as a cancer survivor. My sister passed from breast cancer and last week after much prodding my sister in law found she has breast cancer. They found it early. Early detection is the key. Please put this at the top of your yearly to do list. Bless each of you.

    1. Joan Sheppard

      I love to hear what everyone has to say. We lost a sister to a late detection. Her twin had the same thing and found it and while it was a long trial, she is now fine and enjoying her next generation of great grandchildren. Thanks for the reminder.

    2. Patricia Evans

      Well I would love to follow your advice, but my mammogram was canceled in early April and has yet to be rescheduled. I faithfully get one every year.

  18. Darci Marshall

    Wow! What a list of accomplishments! It can definitely become dull staying at home. A lot of our hiking trails are closed too, but some of the local places are still open for walking around (thank goodness). Hopefully you are also getting some good relaxing in as well!

  19. Sheila

    At the beginning of our lock-down, I sewed 3 single bed charity tops. Then switched to masks but I think this last batch will end my contribution, at least for a while. I have one sewing obligation that must be met this week, and then I think it is time to sew something for myself. Perhaps I will revisit a partially finished project–I only have ‘a few’ ;)–including a partially finished Tango!

    As Easter approached, I had my weepy days. I was supposed to fly home to visit my family, and attend a 3 day quilting retreat with my middle sister. I had no trouble receiving refunds for flights and registration fees, but oh how much I missed this annual event!

    Spring came late to our part of the country and there is still a possibility of a late frost. We live in a very small town and walking has become a way of socializing while keeping a safe distance. At least yards are benefiting from this lock-down.

    I love reading your blog. The photos of your gardens and visitors from the woods always make me smile. The amount of projects that you juggle, amazes me. But perhaps you could add one more thing to your list–permission to do nothing at all. Everybody needs down time.

  20. Ginger Michael

    You can pat yourself on the back for all you have accomplished. Had to laugh seeing that organizing the photos hasn’t been started. For over 20 years I’ve promised myself to do the same with ours. Last few years I have just been making Shutterfly books –so fun to do and no duplicate or disastrous photos stuffed in a box waiting to be sorted.

  21. Carmen N

    Wow! Do you have time to sleep? I think putting goals in writing helps to get things done and helps to stay on task. I love reading your blog and others but don’t often comment. I guess I probably should change that. Many bloggers have changed to Instagram but it’s not the same. Thank you for taking the time to share all that you do!

  22. Love the photo of the Graveyard falls. Such a beautiful spot. Do you know why it was named as such? Yes, I think we are all getting a long list of todo in order and it seems that you have made great progress on yours,

    1. Linda Brayton

      Like several others have stated, I read all of your posts but rarely comment. I enjoy your stories about quilt repairs, your trips, your flowers, etc. and I love participating in the charity projects. You are very much appreciated.

  23. AJ

    I also read your posts but seldom leave comments. I have enjoyed all of your posts. I admire your zest for life, your energy, your positive attitude, and passion for helping others. I always feel better after reading your blog. Although we don’t always leave a message, please know that your blog makes a difference in many lives. Thank you.

  24. Jennifer Rauch

    I am making cards! Lots of cards! Besides the Safelight ones I sent, our Whee! Stampers made 359 cards to encourage our local hospital folks! Then, since we did so well with that idea, we decided to make some for one of our local Nursing Homes. Some of us did both, others just one place, but the second waves of encouraging words totalled. . . another 359 cards!! So, now i have ideas tumbling over ideas, maybe my “pokey” days are over – made 8 cards yesterday. So satisfying to get the ideas & figure how to make them work! Often I use others’ scraps + my own, so even when the designs are similar, I can make more than one at a go. Time consuming, but I hate seeing decent size scraps head to the trash when I know I could get 2 or 3 little birds, a couple balloons or flowers punched out of those scraps! Reading & reading! Got Crazy Rich Asians on my Kindle, & don’t see the appeal. The matriarchs especially are petty & cruel! Anyway, keep on keepin’ on, Carole! We are in Indiana, & some things are opening, but we’re really limiting our outings regardless of what the governor says. With age comes wisdom they say, & our staying home a little longer just gives others our space a bit longer.

  25. Connie Wolfe

    Congratulations on so many accomplishments! I agree that the written lists and mixing cleaning chores with hobbies helps. Recently, I read Bonnie Hunter post about showering and doing her hair for the first time in weeks because she was doing a Zoom interview. That is right on the mark for nearly all of us who are sheltering at home. My parish is putting mass, some worship services and very short pieces on their website. From there, I got the tip to actually dress for the mass and services. That was a great suggestion which helped me feel that I was attending.
    Know that your posts are also a tremendous help to all of your readers.
    Connie W.

  26. Linda B

    Sorry you’re feeling closed in, Carole… I think I must be anti-social or something. I am pretty much enjoying the peacefulness. We live on a busy street, and there is hardly any traffic. Lots more walkers and bikers going by the house on the sidewalk, and fun to see and wave to them and sometimes talk a few minutes if I am working in the front gardens or getting the mail. And we can hear each other! Ha! Totally enjoying our Zoom church service, and this week they showed pictures of ways people are sheltering in place. One was a big sign chalked on someones driveway with an encouraging phrase something like: we’ll get through this together…don’t remember exactly what it was. And another chalked sidewalk message was: will trade TP for chalk. Loved that too! I wonder if we have chalk somewhere in the house! Also participating in a Zoom Dream workshop once a week. So appreciate that I don’t have to get in the car to go to these meetings right now! On the barnyard front, we had ordered six chicks way before this started, and they hatched in the middle of March, so we had them inside with us for about 2 weeks, but now out in the coop with the other girls (well, in a separate area just for them)…so fun to watch…we call it chicken TV! We have not gone out to eat at restaurants for a few years now, so a portion of all my days is cooking or food-related. I keep simplifying as best I can, but still takes time to cook and eat darn it. So I have to struggle to find time in the sewing area. I did make a few masks, and have a couple more to make: Aries 2.0 pattern. Very comfortable with the T shirt ties. Son-in-law just picked up a few more last night – a couple of his friends had bugged him where he got his mask from —-so fun to be popular with young people! Ha! On a family zoom meeting last night my sister-in-law mentioned how hers fogs up her glasses, so going to make a couple for them, hopefully today. And I finished a wall hanging that someone else had started and got stuck on. And I made a couple Bombazine oven mitts (out of desperation – my old mitts were falling apart and I was tired of getting burned)…those were SO FUN to make, and I think I will make some of those for christmas gifts. Waiting for some insulbrite to come via Amazon this or next week. If you just google that, you’ll see how many really fun designs there are, and the free pattern is right there. But I really need to get a couple of my applique projects to where I could work on them upstairs in the evenings…my DH feels abandoned if I stay downstairs too long. Listening to the Maisie Dobbs series right now on audio books, and alternate with the Amelia Peabody series. Both are so interesting and enjoyable! So glad these are available when we cannot go out to the library. I think maybe I miss the library not being open this most. Well, nice to visit with you all this morning. This too will pass. TAke care and stay safe!

  27. kathyinozarks

    Good morning, I applaud for getting things accomplished-me not so much. I am finally getting destressed, hopefully I will have a better mindset to accomplish something-anything haha

  28. Brenda @ Songbird Designs

    Unfortunately, most of my days have been filled with pain and itching from these blasted shingles, going on six weeks now. Don’t really feel like doing a lot. I did get my guild challenge quilt cut out and partially on my design wall. Plus I started (got one corner of one 18 inch block done!) an embroidered quilt that is a monthly BOM by Meaning of Life Designs by Sarah Vedeler. I’ll be learning a lot more about my l year old Pfaff and doing things I haven’t done on my Bernina 830, so this is a good challenge. I just hope we get to meet in June when our guild challenge is due. Otherwise, we may be having a virtual quilt show!! I have enjoyed having my hubby work from home during our quarantine, but that will probably change in the next couple of weeks. He’s been a great nurse for me!

  29. Niki Winchell

    Carole,
    Wow, you have accomplished a lot off of your list. I’m impressed, seemed like a pretty daunting list to me.

    I am working from home. I really like the working part, and hope I can do it once we have fewer restrictions. However, it is harder on nights and weekends, since I am home then also. Like you, my weekly trip is to the grocery. I did help a friend move this past weekend. Pretty sad when moving boxes and furniture is my only socializing for the last few weeks. I have been quilting ,I have just about finished a To the Nines quilt top for QOV. I need to buy some fabric for the borders and backing. I may look at JoAnn’s website and do a curbside pickup if they have something I like. I find it hard to shop on line for fabric. Sometimes the colors aren’t true on my monitor. I am caught up on the Scrap Dance quilt. My goal this week is to practice more with the quilting templates I bought last year. If I can get good enough I will do the QOV that way.

    My daily walk is to the mailbox and around the pond near me when the weather is nice.

    As I know everyone else is also, I am looking forward to getting back to a semblance of normalcy.

    Thanks for keeping up your blog posts. I enjoy reading them!

    Niki

  30. I enjoyed this post and reading the comments of you other followers, it made me feel not so alone in my misery. On one hand I am so happy to be healthy and safe and on the other hand I want to go around and hug all the people in my life in person. Wait – at this point I just want to run around hugging strangers! I love your lists and plans to stay busy/distracted. I too am sad for all the special events I had planned in late winter and early spring including a special trip to visit friends and family We have been getting out on hike too just to be outside.

  31. Nancy Hager

    I feel your pain! I was sick in early March so I cancelled going to a couple of events because I didn’t think I should expose anyone to my cold. So I have been in isolation 9 weeks. I hit the wall at about 7 also. I can’t say the last two have been all that easy but with the weather a bit better I have been able to get outside. I continue to make list to try and occupy my day. I have ordered a couple of books so this last week I had a new book to read. I have resisted killing my husband when he gets on my last nerve and should receive a medal for that. I have been to the grocery store 3 times. Since I really need to send some sympathy cards I should go again to pick up cards. I have made masks and scrub caps and it is just so depressing. Our state is starting to loosen up a little but are taking a phased approach so most of the lockdown continues to the end of May.
    I am just not sure how people are going to make it another month.

  32. Tami Von Zalez

    Like you, I have nearly caught up with every project, even the inconsequential ones. I suggest you make a quilt for YOU. I’ve done a fabric pull for summer fun fabrics and named it Flamingos in the Cabana. I’ve had my eye on my longarmer’s flamingo quilting pattern for the finish.

  33. Connie

    Love opening my mail and reading about what is happening in your life. Last week was probably my worse week staying home. I am trying to stay positive but find myself worrying about the fall and winter and wondering if my kids and grandkids will be able to come home for Christmas. Your column really does give me hope with your beautiful nature pictures. It just made my day when you made a peanut butter sandwich for your squirrel friend. Here’s hoping this week will be better for everyone.

  34. Thank you so much for your honesty. I truly appreciate it. I haven’t commented lately because I didn’t want to be negative, but this distancing is getting to me! Even though I love my home and enjoy being in it. There really is a lot to be thankful for, which I try to remind myself when I get down in the dumps. I think of my husband’s parents, who survived the bombings in London during the blitz and I am humbled by their persistence and courage. And I am very grateful that we have had consistent power, water (and flushing!) and the communication that the people of the 1918-20 flu pandemic didn’t have. We have had some lovely, sunny days here in New Hampshire lately-today is another- and we have been able to get out on the porch, which I always look forward to. I do miss my friends and the little things like eating out and going to the theater in the next town. But I have to balance the risk vs. reward, since I am immune suppressed due to Rheumatoid Arthritis. One of the delights of my day is to read your terrific blog. Please know what a treasure you are to all of us!

  35. Brenda Furlong

    I am so happy that you are still posting. I don’t often comment, but I thoroughly enjoy reading your posts. I love your photos, especially your outdoor photos, flora and fauna, visits from your local wildlife. I have been incredibly unmotivated. It is like a heavy fog is hanging over me, and I have not been able to motivate myself to do much of anything, other than make a few masks for friends. This bothers me a lot, and I don’t what to do about it at this point. Being elderly and medically fragile means I really have to be careful, so I can imagine I will be here for much longer, at least till they have a vaccine or medicine for treatment. I do try to remind myself that we should be grateful that, even though these conditions can be difficult, we are not under war conditions and are not being bombed and having to send the children to safety.

    Thanks so much for giving us something to look forward to. You are appreciated very much and I hope all of us have been reminded to let you know that often enough to feel that you are making a great contribution to many people.

  36. Catherine

    I’m impressed by how much you have accomplished! I haven’t found it hard to fill my time, but maybe that’s because I just recently retired, so there is years worth of cleaning, sorting, craft and garden projects to do. I do spend a lot of time looking at pretty quilts on Pinterest and discovered some new blogs (yours is one) to follow. I’m learning new skills related to piecing. I tried machine quilting, don’t like the results, all future projects will go to the long arm quilter, even if I have to wait a long time for them. I have become obsessed with “crumb” quilt blocks. Honestly I’ve spent hours making these and have to restrain myself not to cut up fabric just to make the blocks bigger or prettier. The sewing little pieces together and not worrying about perfect 1/4 inch seams is so relaxing and fun. I just love seeing how the colors go together and I am learning about combining colors through this. I’m reading a bunch of your tutorials, thank you so much for taking the time to write those so thoroughly, and with the great pictures. Here in California walk daily in my neighborhood, and I see many more people walking than in the past. I see lots of families walking or bike riding, so actually I suspect there is a benefit for the kids who are getting to spend more time with their parents. Stay safe all.

  37. We think of life right now as each day we wake up is another Groundhog day.I think you’ve accomplished a lot with all this “free” time, but your Happy Mail is my favorite. I’ve been trying to send Happy Mail out too, thanks to your inspiration. Concentration in my sewing room seems challenging. A bit of an irony given all this extra time we supposedly have. But I am trying to learn new skills during our stay at home, as well as try new recipes. I’m getting pretty good with sourdough bread!

  38. Helen Glover

    Hello Carole. I always enjoy your blog as I feel like it’s a note from home, since I’m from up that way originally. Your pictures remind me so much of my days visiting that area as a youth. Loved being there!
    I admit I have hit a wall about now. Being “older” ( I refuse to say elderly) people who are at high-risk and also remembering the times we have suffered with the flu (not many young people have experienced that illness), we are definitely social distancing for a long time yet. Just re-scheduled dentist visits for the second time. Just don’t feel comfortable being out in the public yet. It has also affected our savings and pensions so that is another concern on top of being sick! The whole world as we know it will change and it’s difficult to look forward to the future when you can’t make plans. But I am trying. I too have missed two special occasions with family and at 78 you wonder if those times will ever be back.
    I have made all the masks I ever want to make. Glad to have some but since others around us aren’t wearing them I don’t know if they do much good. So, we just stay away from people except for groceries. I have made several small pieces, ie, table toppers, wall-hangings as I am easily bored when working on something bigger. Also, with arthritic hands can’t handle anything really big any more. Have watched all the cooking channels shows at least once, and re-modeled all the houses on HGTV I can handle. I have good days and bad days I guess. We went out yesterday for birdseed as I love watching my birds. Then picked up dinner with a sundae for dessert. Yummiest thing I’ve had in a while.
    I am not into cleaning or re-organizing at all. More power to those who are! So will continue for a while longer reading my bible, watching tv, and working on small projects that will eventually be given to someone. Thanks for your blogging. Keep it up for all of us!

  39. lynn bourgeois

    Hi Carole. It’s me again. While we here in Nova Scotia are still living with isolation and restrictions, we are welcoming spring. The trees are budding, the peepers providing us with their song at night, and the return of so many birds .We welcome these signs of rebirth. I want to thank you again for taking me thru your spring, and all the beauty that you have enjoyed.
    I have been in isolation with my husband since early Feb, after I returned from a short visit with a friend in Florida. While there, I watched some tv(we don’t have tv at home, so it is a novelty), and there was information about the coronavirus in China. I am always uneasy about any novel virus, so when I arrived home I decided to self isolate. And here I am today still isolating. I think it has become my new norm. Some days I accomplish quite a bit, and other days, not so much, but I am content to be where I am, even if it is for a much longer time. My husband goes for groceries or any other errands that need to be done. I stay here.
    One activity I’ve found to be lots of fun, is my “dance party”. We still have cd’s and LP’s so I put a couple on and dance for a while, until I run out of steam. It feels good, even if it hurts a bunch. That’s just my age i think. A lot of fun to singalong with your favs, and it is a social activity ,even if I am dancing alone. I’m connecting with the era, and the music’s memories.I have also really enjoyed the rhythm of my days. There is a very gentle ebb and flow, mush like our oceans tides. Over the years the adage has been repeated,”music soothes the savage beast” Well music certainly soothes my heart and soul. The other really great happening here is the collaboration between my husband and me when it relates to making delicious, but simple nutritious meals at home. Today it was a BBQ’d hamburg with thin sliced ripe tomatoes, crispy romaine lettuce, the thin slice of Balderson aged cheddar melting on top of the burger. Then two peanut butter cookies with cold milk to drink for a finish. As I said, simple, but so delicious, and everything fresh.
    Of course I’m still playing around with my fabric, and writing notes to folks who might need a word from outside of their circle or live alone.
    Sending positive thoughts your way. You are regularly lighting the path for others, Hugs
    Lynn

  40. It is a strange and unsettling time isn’t it? Each week just rolls into the next. Our degree of lock down has eased slightly and we now have my daughter’s family (with wee kiddies) in our bubble and I must say, that first hug of a small child was amazing.I walked and blogged every day of (5 weeks) level 4 but am back to spasmodic blogposts now. I’ve sewed and dealt a little with the autumn bounty (apple cakes galore!) and then the day is over. Just all hoping that these strict circumstances of remaining ‘at home, staying safe, saving lives’ pays off for us all.

  41. it is starting to get quite difficult. I think the thing I miss most is going to local parks, which are still closed. And when things start opening I am thinking they will get mobbed, which means we will stay in a little longer till they stop being too busy.

    Good luck on your goals. In my situation, with everyone home, it is actually much harder to get a project done. It would be easier with an empty house.

  42. Daryl

    Hi Carole, You are amazing and we all marvel at your ability to keep on track with those goals. I totally understand about hitting the wall. I am securely retired, have plenty to eat and enough sewing and quilting to keep me busy for months. I am generally fine staying home with my husband. But this weekend it was just frustrated with my quilt, my yard, all my projects, and was terribly out of sorts. I don’t even know why I was so done, done, done! Hey, let me know, we can do lunch!

  43. I am not bored but lack motivation. This is odd for me as normally i SO like being at home. Your list is impressive and you have done so many things, all ticked off, When I added up what I have done it is a short list, but when I include 6 curtains, not so short maybe. I have done a little sorting out, done for a few walks, but even that by yourself on town streets is not appealing, and as for grocery shopping, normally we would go out on a Tuesday, have a cafe coffee and morning tea then shop together. As over 70, have been advised to stay home totally!!! So since March 17th, a week before lockdown, that was the last real outing to get our flu vaccinations, our GP is in another town 42 km away, I have been last week to the local hardware shop to get Hugh some paint. Mask, gloves, the door was locked, man came out, told him my phoned order, he swiped my paywave card, gave me the card, receipt and tin of paint,Took my gloves off, went home, sprayed the card and tin with meths.Is this going to be the new normal? Never mind, I have started a new quiltalong and now have to be motivated each week. Stay safe Carole, soon you will be on those wonderful car outings together with friends, and you do so much , maybe we don’t realise, the place mats, the autumn quilt designs and the table settings, and then your beautiful garden through the seasons, I so look forward to seeing your verandah and the pots all there.
    Fondest greetings from a very wet place down here,XXX

  44. You’ve accomplished so much! One thing I’ve done that has helped tremendously is to invite a few friends over for driveway chats. They bring their own chairs and we just sit and catch up. It doesn’t sound like much but it’s helped sooooo much. This weekend it was some quilt friends and we had an awesome show and tell!

    1. Carole, your list impressed me back then, and it still does today! I’m trying just to do a little something each day around the house, a little sewing, a little reading, etc. It’s been nice enough here the last couple of weeks that we’ve been able to work in the yard and do some gardening, too. I haven’t minded staying home all that much, but today a friend organized a birthday parade for another friend and 15 of us paraded by, each in our own cars, honking and waving, and sang happy birthday to her. And I realized how much I miss seeing my friends and family in person! So I totally get how you are feeling! You’ve gotten lots of great comments on your post, and I hope you enjoyed reading them. I sure did!

  45. Mary

    It must be very difficult for people who like to be out and about socially at this time. Luckily I am very happy staying in my own surroundings and just pleasing myself. I haven’t left my home property for 5-6 weeks, haven’t seen a soul – wonderful. Except the deliverer of my groceries once a week, and they don’t hang around!
    This is history in the making and it is good to be part of it – making sure that I do my bit to keep myself and others safe.
    I have cooked, baked, sewed and gardened my way through these passing weeks. But, funnily I haven’t done much reading. Haven’t had the time, reading is something I do when I’m a bit weary and because I haven’t been rushing around in the ‘world’, I haven’t been tired. A bonus for being in lockdown.
    Soon enough I will have to join the rat race and if I’m honest I will miss just being at home.
    Try as I might, I can’t understand people not loving being at home, especially if you have some garden space. I understand those who live in apartments who can’t get outside would be a little stir crazy.
    But patience, it will soon end with most coming through safely. :))

  46. Claire Warner

    Hi Carole – I hope you got my comment that I was in the middle of writing. Then it went away – who knows where. Then I got caught up making bread and cooking lunch. Will do more later – 😊!!! Claire

  47. jesusnowand4

    I am very busy. We are in the middle of moving and have more projects to keep me busy than I can possibly think about, so I shouldn’t be feeling the way I am. But I feel so sad! The longer the shutdown lasts the worse I feel! At first when I heard about the shutdown I thought at least I will get a lot done and in my down time I will get to sew or quilt! LOL! I have been able to get a little sewing in and quilting so I should be happy, but the lack of contact with the outside world is wearing on me in a far more difficult way than I could have foreseen! My conclusion is we were not made to be reclusive! I cannot imagine what life would be like if I lived by myself! And yet I feel whiny for feeling this way!!!

  48. It k’s a shame you can’t do the outings you like to do and be with friends, but better to be safe. It sounds like you have done a huge amount from your lists. I am quite happy being at home, I do miss catch ups with quilting friends but we chat on the phone now and then. I have had a couple of stitching days using zoom, we were supposed to be on retreat so this was the next best thing. I I did go out last Saturday, took a quilt to the quilter, keeping the correct social distance 😁, it was nice to have a quick chat and then went to the hairdresser. She works from home, has one client at a time and cleans in between, she is also home schooling her children until she feels it is safe for them to return to school. Fortunately the rates of infection are dropping here, but we are heading into winter, so not sure how long that will last. I have not done much cleaning as I had an operation early March, so have been recovering, but have managed to get sewing done. Hang in there Carole, lots of us enjoy your blog posts, hopefully in the next few months life will return to what ever the new normal is. Xx

  49. Joan Sheppard

    Just reading your list of accomplishments and the comments of others inspires me to do more! You have done so much including keeping our spirits up! What can we do for you?
    But I have been very busy. Baby eye spy quilts for 2 new precious ones expected – one TOMORROW one later in June. The baby showers were cancelled. Two weddings were postponed but I sent their quilts earlier. Masks, placemats, hot pads, kids mittens……
    There are no restrictions on walking your dog and our Siberian Husky is taking full advantage of this. Three walks a day. A tired dog is a good dog. We help out with finding good homes for puppers and Good News! adoptions are way up. Each adoptee gets their own quilt to take with.
    Huskies are great talkers for those of us looking for a buddy. Our town is 30,000 and I think everyone has a dog! No lack of seeing people, just can’t be close enough to talk – just wave and keep walking!
    Trying out new patterns. These “tryouts” are finished up and donated to the dogs or for the fundraisers/auctions. So many quilts and still the stash is HUGE!
    Started doing some scanning of old photos. Then I go to “Photoscape” free download and do some very basic cleanup and photoshopping. But here’s the problem. Now what do I do with the original? Some of these are late 1800’s, very fragile so glad I can get them saved. My friends laugh that now that I’m retired I’m looking for a BIGGER house. So many crafts take up space! Some place big enough for friends to gather and craft. Dreams keep me going.
    Here’s to you and hope we can all get out and about to meet somewhere – maybe we’ll do our own cruise! It doesn’t even need to go anywhere – just the food alone is enough for me!
    Thanks Carole.

  50. Wow, what an ambitious list! I am up and down all the time. Sometimes, I can accomplish a ton and other times I can barely wash a dish in the sink. My boys are still doing their online schooling and today the governor of NJ announced the kids won’t be heading back to school for the rest of the academic year. So sad, even though I know it’s the right thing to do. My boys are in 8th and 10th grade and I’m so sad that my 8th grader will miss out on all the end of the year events – class trip, dance, picnic…hopefully, they will come up with something for graduation. Such a shame if we have to miss that milestone. But we are healthy so I am thankful for that. I just need to get myself motivated to blog more…it’s really been suffering lately. Hope you can cross a bunch off your list – stay well!
    Shelley

  51. Susan T

    I feel that with this pandemic I am being pushed to do, do, do. Make masks, clean closets, finish undone projects, watch 20 new You Tube videos from vendors. But in reality it is ok to just “be”. To enjoy the quiet, a word with God, daydream. Every moment does not need to be crammed with noise and confusion and doubt. I do not feel the need to make a video or join a Zoom session. Now don’t get me wrong. I sew, quilt or machine embroider almost every day, but some days I just “be” and recharge. Maybe it is because I am a cancer survivor and have had to get used to a new normal once in my life. I survived that and I will survive what ever another new normal brings.

  52. enjoy reading your posts and looking at your lovely pictures. Your list is admirable.
    I have been sorting through papers and items that have been stored away for years. I am amazed at how much paper has gone to the recycling bin.
    Although I’m in my 70’s, our 11 year old grandson lives with us. He keeps me busy supervising school work that is done online now. We take walks each day with our 12 year old dog; she is always ready to go! My husband has been our contact with outside world, he works each day & goes to grocery store or any other needs.
    My brother lives near Asheville NC, had open heart surgery 2 months ago. He’s doing great, but decided to sell his motorcycle. Bought a Miata last week & sent great pictures of their 237 mile drive – probably went near your home. I think he would love your Mini Tours.
    We’ve had to cancel family plans to travel to Carolinas for wedding and family reunion. Much emotion over these cancellations. My sister now lives in Arizona – she shared a picture of her new shirt with the saying “I like to think South Carolina misses me too”.
    thanks for your newsy writings – I really enjoy them

  53. Mary Crawford

    It has finally warmed up here in Minnesota and suddenly my flower gardens are growing ever so fast. With more time at home, I had a better handle on the clean-up but still working to rid the flowers of all the over-run grass/weeds. This week it turned cold but I did manage to tackle the yellow raspberries again and dug them all out. A very laborious job and most of the second digging for hidden roots is done but the rain began. One would think I would have had many quilt projects completed but that hasn’t been the case. Our grandkids have been around more this last couple of months than normal – due to boredom, plus the parents working. It has been a joy but also time-consuming. Several days I was able to take them kayaking. Saturday they ventured down our creek and wound up having mud baths again in the banks which they absolutely loved. Bored I am not – I enjoy the solitude out in the country with no pressures of attending this or that. We do not live a very social life out here on the farm but that is okay. That is what we are use to. My husband manages to get around due to his farming. We have our church services via Zoom
    and are able to see our kids and grandchildren. My mother passed away Feb. 13 and we have been so thankful that is behind us – as we were able to celebrate her life as family and friends with a true funeral. We feel blessed to have been with her daily those last 5 weeks.
    Some of my drawers were cleaned, many are not. Life goes on in many different ways. Hope you are able to have peace of mind and keep yourself busy. It will get better – just a test of patience.

  54. Sarah

    Carole-you have gotten quite a lot done! I am impressed.

    I have not been nearly so productive! I have been making masks for family and friends. Also, I have been going through my works in progress and working to finish them. They include quilts of various sizes and clothes for my daughter and granddaughter. It is very tempting to start something new but I am determined to finish as many things as I can. I work on three or four things at a time to stay focused. I am making good progress. Some of the quilts I am finishing are for gifts and some are for charity. My sewing machine is definitely going to need service when this is all over. Also I plan to see what I can do to make a scrap quilt with leftovers to remind me of this time.

    It has been so disappointing to cancel fun events and dates with no idea of when they can realistically be rescheduled. It is also frustrating to not be able to see friends and family in person. As someone else wrote, I hope this is all worth it and that by being extremely careful we will be spared. We are beginning to open up in our area. I understand that people really want to get out but the case count has not leveled off and we don’t have enough testing. So, like you, my husband and I are thinking it will be at least June before we go anywhere aside from the grocery store, post office and pharmacy every few weeks and walking around the neighborhood for exercise.

    I have been reading some. I decided to listen to The Splendid and the Vile after you mentioned it. It will be a distraction while sewing more masks tomorrow and I do like Erik Larsen’s books.

    I try to touch base with two or three friends a day and that helps. I do not find zoom all that satisfying but do it if pushed. I am sorry you have hit a wall but it looks like there are a lot of us right there with you!

  55. Judy Andrew

    Hi Carole, this is Judy from KS, I so enjoy your emails as I have visited NC several times over the last few years. Trying to keep busy myself, so far I spent all last weekend raking & pulling weeds, trimming a much overgrown bush & preparing different garden areas before my order of plants arrive. Yesterday I repotted this Hibiscus plant that my friend bought for our patio & just in the nick of time as we had a severe storm today & the temps have dropped down to the 40’s 🙁. When not outside in the garden or helping my friend w/wiring his security cameras I am usually doing some kind of art or craft. I’m known as a mixed media artist so am into a lot of different stuff. At the present I have been busy making greeting cards & junk journals & am working on an ephemera storage book. Like you, I enjoy hiking , photography & drives around the countryside. And like you am about to go stir crazy w/this virus thing, would love to be able to get my haircut & a pedicure. But that doesn’t look like it’s going to happen anytime soon & you won’t be able to tell me apart from cousin IT. Well @ least I will know what I will be for Halloween, haha! Well, that’s a rap for me, take care Carole!

  56. I think the hardest part is missing people. My cousin came by to drop of a book and i asked her to come in. We sat far apart, but oh my goodness, was it ever good to talk. I’ve been sending cards to the home bound from my church. I know they must be feeling it more than most. A little bit of quilting, but wrestling with my Sweet Sixteen. Sigh…. Not so sure that was a good purchase. Keep on keeping on….

  57. Phyllis Smith

    Hi there,
    Up late tonight, too many things on my mind. The waterfalls reminds me of the falls my grandparents were on and a I got a picture of us on them. So many falls I went to in the Senecar, Chimney Rock and have wanted to go back to visit man of them but just haven’t wanted to go by myself. Had a frie3nd that use to go with me on a lot of trips but she has gotten to the point that heights bother her now so my traveling has slowed down a lot. Have to find another traveling partner I guess, Want to go to Gibbs Gardens up in the northern mountains but with the virus situation will have to wait awhile. Love seeing the gardens and the beautiful flowers, time and patience will come back
    Phyllis

  58. Bobbie Woodruff

    Hi Carole, here in Washington state our weather hasn’t warmed up much. Starting tomorrow they say 4-5 days of unusually warm weather. 70’s for this time of year. Things are blooming but the rain comes and a lot of the flowering trees lose there flowers. I did get a few (6) strawberry starts. The lady put them out by her mailbox and I picked them up. They are planted have a few flowers on them so might get a strawberry or 2 this year.
    I seem to have no motivation I have a quilt top I sewed while I visited a friend in Phoenix, Az in February. I have quilted it so it’s set for a while. I made the binding today so I’ll sew it on tomorrow and that is about all I’ve done except make mask for family.
    I have made a baby quilt that isn’t finished yet . I want to put his name on it and I haven’t ever made letters and figured out how to make them into blocks. I keep putting it off.
    I have only been to the grocery store 3 times since this has started. Then when I come home I worry so I got the virus. I’m 75 and hubby is 84 if he got this virus I know he wouldn’t make it. I won’t let him go anywhere. Then I think oh, God if I bring it back to him what will I do.
    We are going to shelter in place for a while to come.
    We are also in a car club Nash Metropolitan club. We have had 2 monthly meeting canceled. A fix a Met day canceled. We have a weekend planned with our Canadian friends the middle of July and it’s a wait and see now. We sent off for our new passports in early March and our checks have cleared but nothing has come yet. They were expiring in July. I’m thinking that office might be closed. Then we have a weekend in Northern California with the Oregon Met club July 29-30-31 and August 1 that is still a go as of now but it is also a wait and see event.
    Before all of this I didn’t think we went every much but now I think I must have had my foot in the road all the time. I don’t miss shopping as I don’t buy much except fabric. I’m old enough don’t buy lots of new cloths, get my hair cut every couple of months but I don’t color my hair any more. Heck I earned this grey hair I’m going to wear it natural from now own. When I retired 15 yrs ago I stopped doing my nails. It took two years for them to grow back from being so thin and bad. I’ll never do them again. I did go for a pedicure every couple of months but now I have learned how to do my own so I won’t be going back, that $40. Will buy, you guessed it Fabric.
    I haven’t gone thru any closets or drawers but my do I need to, I think I’m a little bit hoarder.
    I know my kids and grandkids don’t want any of this stuff but it has memories for me. Later they can garage sale it all. I use to make porcelain dolls but not now, they don’t care about them at all. Still have a lot of my molds in the storage room.
    Can you believe I rattle on like a rattlesnake, never shut up. I so enjoy your post, I scroll thru the email so I can open yours. I love your home and beautiful mountains. All the Wild life that visits you. Your yard and porch are always so beautiful.
    Ok before I go (this is why I don’t answer blogs) I would like to know what is the fabric underneath the sewing machine in this blog the purple flowers? It is beautiful.
    I hope a lot of us stay home. Even after everything is reopened, I think if it’s opened up to soon it will just restart.
    You are not alone at being ready to pull your hair out, I even have this if I don’t get out soon I’m going crazy, but then I can’t think Well where are you taking off to? I don’t have a answer except the Met events that may be canceled. That makes me think I didn’t do much before it started it’s just the thought you can’t just go if you want to that’s depressing .
    Much love to everyone out there that are staying home and trying hole it together. Together we will get thru this. Some beautiful sewing will be done and I’m sure no one will forget for years to come.
    Bobbie

  59. Carol

    You have managed so much during your shutdown. I know how hard it is so not see people, but just remember: “this too shall pass””! As several other readers have stated, we all hit the wall at different points. A week ago I discovered that all of a sudden I am extremely emotional. I cry at tv shows, get angry for the slightest reason (really out of character for me) and have no sense of humour (usually humour is my best defence from everything; dealing with an angry, nasty person, imagine them with a goose head; honking away, having to deal with bad customer service rep; tell them what you like about their company). Up until today I have been keeping up with deadlines and commitment. During this period I have made 4 blog hop projects and got the blog posts written,wrote up a pattern for a RAL, done 3 pattern test quilts and made 5 quilts of my own; I even designed two of them. At this point, I’m thinking we are at day 53 or 54 of isolating but I’m not positive about that. I have to look at my phone to see what day it is. Dinners are never on time because I have no concept of time. Today I have done nothing. I started pressing fabric, then had to drop everything to go find fabric I need to make beanbag chairs for 2 of my granddaughters, got sidetracked by looking for an apron pattern that a friend is looking for, remembered I needed another fabric for another blog hop project, stopped to fold laundry (it’s not put away yet), then checked for an email I am expecting, got sidetracked by a blog post, went back to find the bean bag chair fabric, and ended up sorting out a couple of pieces I wanted to make tops out of……You get the idea. I’m going in circles today. I have done nothing. I can not remember ever in my adult life ever saying that before 🥴. So try to be kind to yourself. We are all being affected in one way or another. As for me, I’m going to make a cup of tea and sit and do some knitting. Everything else can wait until another day. Perhaps tomorrow. Perhaps the day after. Give yourself the gift of time, sit and enjoy the sunshine, remember the fun times and in your imagination plan the dinner parties for next winter. Convince yourself you are having a staycation. Eat your desert before dinner! Do something crazy and out of character. One of my friends told me she went out to mow her lawn stark raving naked (and she thinks maybe a little raving mad as well!) just because she used to get frustrated at her lack of privacy with a continual flow of friends and family at her home. She did say it freed her from the anxiety but I’m not sure I would recommend or carry out her choice!

  60. Hi Carole, you have done very well keeping busy, but I sense your cabin fever! Your extroverted personality makes all of this much more difficult. However, you have tackled some pretty big chores these past seven weeks, so enjoy making those checks in the list!

    Piano lessons have really kept me hopping since March when school shut down. I went online immediately, so had a new program to get acquainted with, as well as coaching families through too. Teaching online requires a different style, and it really sapped my energy at first. Now it’s OK, but ai find myself looking forward to the weekends and much less screen time. This weekend will be the recital, we are doing a YouTube world premiere event. I have one family still recording, they are driving me batty! (It was supposed to be to me a week ago.)

    The garden is now planted, probably too early, but DH grew up in Kansas and he forgets that spring is much later here. We did lose all the cauliflower and most of the cabbage to the snow storm a few weeks ago, so will put seeds in the ground today. The garden is now most of the back yard, so it’s huge and looking bare at the moment. Patience is difficult this time of the year.

    Craft wise I have been less motivated, though I am still making steady progress on my projects. I really want to do another BOM, but selecting one is difficult. I think I may have it narrowed down at last.

    Here’s a thought: What do you think about having a quilt trunk show? It could be a show and tell…people could just watch, or they could show a quilt/quilt top and tell the story behind it. If you like that, we could pick a date in late May and just try it.

  61. Patricia Evans

    As you can clearly see, you have lots of followers, many who are usually silent, and apparently most of us in the same boat as you. I could write a long reply which would reflect much of what has already been said. I think what saddens me most (aside from the great loss of life and economic hardship for so many) is that , at my age, 72, I don’t foresee being able to go back to a “normal” life. I see a form of self-isolation for my husband and myself becoming our normal. Even the weather is conspiring against us up here in the north. W have snow in the forecast for Mother’s Day!. Wish I could be cheery, but right now, it’s not possible.

  62. Claire Warner

    Hi Carole – Let me try this again!!! This time I will use the iPad with the keyboard rather than my iPhone and fingers!!! Mac says I need to learn to do the speaker style. Sometimes I do for short messages. I find it seems just as quick to use the fingers!!
    Yes, this “Lockdown” is frustrating. Today Mac and I took at strip to Easley, SC. He found an electric hedge trimmer on Craig’s List for $10 down there. Then we decided to go on to Strawberry Hill. It was soooooo good to be out. We even found an open thrift shop – Miracle Hill in or near Easley!!!!
    I admire your list making and your accomplishments. I too had great intentions of things I wanted to get accomplished. I have managed to complete some. It feels so good to walk into my closet and see some empty space!! Rather than trying to cram one more thing in there!!!
    Some time ago Mac decided we needed to increase the efficiency in our (small) sewing room we share. He found a Craftsman Tool Chest and modified it. I now have a lot of my supplies in the drawers. I really like the large over sized ironing board he put on top. Now he has added areas on the back and sides to put things which are otherwise in the way.
    Before this whole Lockdown started I decided I needed to organize my fabric. I knew I had a lot. But certainly not the stash I found. I had been asking Mac to make me a few shelves to put in the corner of the sewing room. Just before the Lockdown he found a unit at Habitat Restore. While the unit wasn’t what we needed, the lumber in it was perfect. I now have not 1 but 2 shelf units [6 feet high] on either side of the door with most of my stash on display. BTW – if you need/want some extra fabric, I will be happy to share. Come on over.
    Last week a friend needed help moving from one unit to another in her Retirement Campus. Took me several days of hard work. The hard part is over but there is still a good chunk of organization which she will need help with.
    I’ve got 5 masks partially finished. I thought I would do them all one step at a time. That worked well until I reached a point where I couldn’t follow the written directions. So now they sit. Hopefully I will be able to do some more on them this evening. I need/want to get them done as well as more.
    Yesterday I made some bread. Mac has been “suggesting” I do so for a while. Fortunately, I had a few yeast packets in the freezer. (You can keep yeast long after its date by freezing it. The best by date on this that I had was sometime in 2018!!! And it worked great.) According to Google, the yeast makers have to plan ahead in order to keep fresh yeast on the shelves. It is a long, growing process to get the yeast ready for market. This time of year is usually a low yeast demand time, so it took a bit to ramp up the production.
    My bread turned out great – I think it has been close to 20 years since I last made bread!!! I used King Arthur White Whole Wheat and Tenda Bake Unbleached White flour in more or less equal amounts along with some Quinoa Flakes and some Quick Oats. Got a very tender loaf. Mac loves it so maybe I will be making it more often.
    Carole, I had no idea of going on this long. But your remarks about being restless at home touched my heart strings. You can consider this a personal note and not publish and I will not be offended OR you can edit it and again I will not be disappointed at all. Take care, stay healthy and let’s keep in touch. Love to you, Claire

  63. Kathleen Rountree

    This just totally sucks, doesn’t it? It seems every few days there is a new thing to be very sad about. Today I learned my neighbors have put their house up for sale – they own several restaurants – need I say more? And other friends have losses in their family, or budgetary issues that are just beginning to be seen. So, at least you are not alone in feeling down. Some days I want to bang my head on the floor and just throw a temper tantrum … hang in there, girl. Kathleen

  64. Melanie

    Thankful to have sewing to keep me happily busy, checking blog posts by some of my favorite bloggers (CFMCH, for instance!), getting a few things done in the garden and around the house, and thank you for inspiring me to clean my closet and get a bag of donations ready for the thrift shop. We are only going out minimally also. PO and grocery store is about it. I did a quick run to JoAnn’s for needles!! Can’t run low on those! We keep on keeping on…but it’s all good at our end. Stay safe; prayers for all.

  65. Lovely post Carole. It’s so energetic and organized to bout so the internal strife of hitting a wall I can empathize with you.
    Thank you for sharing all that you do. In these trying times for many there are silver linings. Baking and cooking more instead of going out. Cleaning, de-cluttering and organizing looks well in my home yet there are still more areas to tackle.
    All in good time. I read, meditate, self care too and it’s amazingly simple to talk a walk down the river path and see the delights God has made available. Stay well and there will come a time to continue on your blessed life. .

  66. I’m working from home, so I don’t have as much time to fill as others, but do desperately miss seeing my daughter and outings with my friends. As sad and worried as I sometimes feel, I know my daughter (and everyone living in a city) has it much worse… living in small basement apartment with one tiny window, and not allowed to go outside except to go to work is almost unbearable.

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