What Grandma’s Doing While Quarantined

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Dear Handsome Son:

I’ve made my menu for the next month. I’ve got all my spinach, apples, oranges, bananas, lemons, limes and avocados all stored up in the freezer, of hopefully in ‘ingenious’ ways . . . we’ll see.

It is wonderful to know our local grocery stores have special times for the customers 60 years and older and high risk people as described by the CDC to get food.

Trader Joe’s in Orem has special hours every day from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. Reams is Monday, Wednesday and Friday 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. Wal-Mart has Tuesday from 6 a.m. to 7 a.m. (They know you are up by 5 a.m. anyways!) Smith’s is Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m.

I have enjoyed our Sunday dinners, and they are more important now, virtually, but worth the effort. Using video to have ‘virtual’ dinners, miles apart or even hundreds of miles apart with the family is so comforting and reassuring, I go to sleep those nights with a smile.

I am going to try a couple of friends during the week. I’ve reignited the largely lost art of letter-writing, I’ve got boxes of them and cards! Maybe I’ll even send Christmas cards in April. Why not! Any connection is better than no connection.

There is so many young and old that are isolated at this time. There’s a sweet child from Texas, she’s decided to make the best of isolation from her preschool friends with a little help from her imaginary friends.

The young child decided to celebrate her fifth birthday with her invisible friends! When her party was canceled, because of the coronavirus quarantine, “she received some dolls for her birthday and was excited because her parents let her spray the disinfectant to show her how to clean,” her mother said. “She was so excited to hold the can like an adult.” Teach ‘em young! I think I might add a couple of those kind of friends, hopefully I can have them clean the house.

Well, they say keep with a program.


Monday mornings, you know I usually go to the recreation center, now closed, which is a good thing since the virus can stay on stainless steel longer than three days- yikes! So, I dragged out my expensive dust collector called an exercise machine, cleaned it off, and plugged it in to see if it was working, that was enough exercise for the day.

It is amazing to learn all the good changes for our world, that with less transportation there is less pollution, A lot less here in Utah and around the world. A professor of meteorology at the University of Reading, said a large amount of the air pollution breathed in comes from traffic, as levels of traffic pollution have plummeted, exposure to pollutants is reduced.

I do like to use my bike a lot. The frontrunner is very relaxing, but how great is it now that carbon emissions are reducing!


Another thing I haven’t done in forever is sew! Now this thing called a sewing machine weighs more than a Q400, but I managed to lug this out! I have been reading about the shortages of surgical masks and how we, you, ok Suzie (my daughter-in-law) and I can make masks for our local hospitals! The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that DIY masks can be made in times of crisis as a last resort and “should ideally be used in combination with a face shield that covers the entire front and sides of the face.”

A study of homemade face masks by SmartAirFilters.com found that cotton T-shirts and cotton pillowcases are the best materials for making DIY face masks, based on their ability to capture particles yet remain breathable, and that they perform comparably to surgical-grade masks. https://smartairfilters.com/en/blog/best-materials-make-diy-face-mask-virus/ Here’s links to masks patterns : https://www.huffpost.com/entry/how-to-make-face-mask-coronavirus_l_5e78cb2fc5b6f5b7c5483e17

You know I never liked wearing T-shirts anyways at my age! Just need more T-shirt material, can you send some?

I needed to take a breather and clear my head. The sun was out so I walked my backyard’s four corners for 20 minutes, made lunch, cleaned for 20 minutes then took a nap. Is it quarantine or early retirement? It is getting better every day. 


I didn’t feel like doing anything, so I did crossword puzzles till my fingers got tired. Then went on to working on a painting I’ve been doing at the senior center. Time always disappears when doing art or fine tuning a craft.

A therapist I just read says, “new projects will keep you motivated and distracted. Do the project around the house that you have avoided for ages for that flush of satisfaction. Start a big jigsaw puzzle. Cooking, gardening, painting, or any kind of craft are all brilliant at reminding you of your rewarding ability to create and complete something. Go for a brisk walk before breakfast. Exercise is the fastest and easiest way to regulate and calm your body and mind. Ideally, get outside – even if it’s just for a walk or to do some light gardening.”

Those are great ideas!


I thought since I’m caged in my house, I got the brilliant idea of letting the birds out of their cages; what could go wrong? I chase those birds for over an hour! (don’t tell the Grandkids what I did, I don’t want them thinking Grandma’s gone daft!)

With all the chasing of those birds, I’m exhausted! That was my exercise for the day! In the end the birds were fine, and I think we’ll do it again! I kind of liked having my friends flying outside their cages, and at least somebody’s getting exercise!

Was there a lesson learned? Yes, duck!


I went into the room I fear, the one with the exercise machine! With a heavy sigh, still in my pajamas, I turned the beast on. Then I turned it off and changed my clothes and got back on it again. I finally used it for the first time in years for a whole five minutes!

I’ve had many great new accomplishments this week but this is the biggest! I’ve actually been losing weight because of course I only bought healthy food!

Snacking on hummus and carrot sticks get dull fast. What was I thinking. Does Suzie have any recipes of healthy desserts? I know she does.

I did read an amazing story of immense gratitude from an unidentified man who stood outside the ER at Morristown Medical Center in New Jersey this week, holding one hand to his heart and pressing a homemade sign against the window. The man wasn’t identified, nor is it confirmed whether his wife has been hospitalized for coronavirus or some other ailment.

Yet while the man kept his distance by standing outside with the message to make sure to project his gratitude to those inside. They got the message. An emergency room nurse took a picture of the sweet moment before sharing it with other medical professionals.


Gardens. No weeds.

I planted more than 400 bulbs in the last two years. Where are they? Weeds!

One small section at a time. I tried having neighborhood kids help but they’re already indentured by their moms, who you guessed it, are pulling weeds. Moms have an amazing invisible power of getting things done.


I’m looking forward to the churches opening back up, but I’m finding maybe it was more a social event, God forgive me, because I’m finding a different sweet solace still getting dressed for church and going into the gardens and looking at all the beautiful gifts that have been created. It’s very quiet and peaceful on Sunday mornings. I usually seek a question during the week, that would defy the minds of theologians, and study that on Sunday. Sometimes I call my friends and ask their perspective on it and get wonderfully different answers.

I pray you are all are doing well, stay healthy and safe. Kiss and hug the Grandkids for me. (Serve Daily submission.)

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