Friday, April 24, 2020

Pandemic Week Six

We spent Sunday monitoring pulse oxygen levels for both Kate and Ty. By Sunday evening, Kate was on oral steroids on top of breathing treatments every three hours to control her cough. She pulled her first all night asthma attack one year ago this weekend and apparently has decided to make it an annual event. Tree pollen is extremely high so we suspect it is the allergy trigger. We had some long nights but flexibility to rest when needed so it all worked out. I spent many hours sitting on her floor listening to her breathe as she finally drifted off to sleep. However, as I handed her each individual steroid, I begged her not to turn into the Incredible Hulk. Those things make our sweet Kate so mean. As much as she loves the Avengers, she accepted my pleas with the humor intended. And so far, Ty responds well to his rescue inhaler. Within fifteen minutes of treatment, he is back outside exploring the field I assume is also triggering his symptoms.

Middle of the night musings.....I wonder if the people living in HGTV tiny houses are regretting life choices on week six of quarantine. Perhaps the crime channel could partner with HGTV and create new mini series Tiny Home: Homicide. Or perhaps HGTV could just follow up with their usual low level drama, Tiny Home: Man Cave and She Shed Additions.

Monday I was permitted to work at the school packing up personal belongings for my smallest friends. Being in the classroom without all their sweet faces was bittersweet but it felt good to be doing something for others. Plus chatting with my front office friends is always worth a few laughs. I miss my people.

Tuesday we returned to e-learning. Kate required coffee. Ty conquered his as Spiderman. But check out Kate's most recent art assignment. She was supposed to make a self portrait but instead chose to represent her favorite things. Please note the Hulk tearing through the background. He does tend to make an appearance every once in awhile around here.

Wednesday we made tremendous progress on the deck before the rain arrived Thursday. Layla took her role as supervisor very seriously. She needed Thursday as a day of rest.

He'd been working quite awhile when it was suddenly a little too quiet.....

Kate cleaned out and reorganized her closet. As result Makenna and Erin added pieces to their wardrobes. Ironically, 90% of what they acquired had been theirs previously, just handed down during seasons of purging. I however, now know what happened to a missing sweater of mine.
Wednesday night Makenna made this video after discovering Ty's pillow in the bathroom. When asked about it, he had no idea how it happened. We think he was sleepwalking but it was amusing, none the less.
He says this is his Corona mask

Kate also created the Ironman mask out of wire for another art assignment. Ty donated toys to her display. 

Friday, I was permitted to spend some more time packing at the school. The kids were finished with e-learning for the week so they worked on creating an Avenger wall in Kate's room together. Ty also picked up a camera for the first time and is excited to see what he can do with it. However, I have clarified twice it is NOT waterproof so he is once again feeling a bit stifled.

By Friday afternoon, our supervisor was exhausted and ready for us to be done already. She wasn't the only one.

We are planning a large pot of lemongrass on the edge of the deck next to the stairs as a barrier and mosquito deterrent. We will also stain the new deck in the fall.

All in all, it was a productive week. We are thrilled with the expanded deck and bench seating in place of railing. 

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Quarantine Week Five

Monday, Ty had his first opportunity to meet with his class virtually. He was excited to log on but quickly felt overwhelmed by the noise and chaos. He left the meeting five times in fifteen minutes, even asking for his inhaler because his chest was tight. I held him off on the inhaler until after the class ended because I knew he didn't need it. Immediately after the meeting ended, he took a two hour nap. I recognized his reaction to the class as anxiety. He has been soaring through online work and his grades reflect understanding but seeing everyone after so long, made his heart race. Suddenly he wasn't working alone without eyes on him, feeling judged. However he had two additional opportunities to engage online with his class this week and thoroughly enjoyed both of those experiences. When asked what was different, he shrugged he knew what to expect after the first time.

He wrapped his workload in three days again this week and was delighted to receive an email from his teacher congratulating him on excellent work. He beamed with pride.

On the other hand, Kate had a rough time working through some of her online work on Friday. In her defense, the house was loud and frankly, it was the first moment either she or Ty has expressed frustration with the quarantine. All in all, they've done so well but they too are entitled to feeling a little overwhelmed by it all. She quickly worked through it and then rested as the rainy day warranted anyway. Moving forward, all of their weekends will be four day weekends and we are grateful. None of us want tied to online contacts and have denied most opportunities to engage there beyond what is required.

However, I managed to watch two movies during quiet time this week. Anyone who knows me, knows I don't typically have the capacity to sit through a movie but I loved A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood so much, I made time for Saving Mr. Banks the following day. Not only did I appreciate the down time, but so did Oliver who napped both afternoons next to me. I always thought he was indifferent to me but it appears he just needed me to sit down long enough for him to get comfortable.

Our food issues came to a head this weekend when Hello Fresh failed their delivery on Thursday and then again on Friday. They told me it would be arriving Sunday so I thawed ground beef for burgers on Saturday only to come home from our hike to the Hello Fresh box on my doorstep. After I put away the food, I realized they shorted me the pork chops needed for one of the meals. I recognize they are battling the same challenges the grocery stores are so I am not angry, just realizing I can't have dinner plans this expensive being changed without warning during a season when locating needed items is a crap shoot.
A lot of hot tea was required to battle the ongoing chill in the air but this photo was taken as proof the sun did in fact shine at some point this week. 

I have had enough issues with my Clicklist orders every week and a half; I was scrambling to have odd items shipped to the house to keep us out of physical stores. After the Hello Fresh confusion this weekend, I declared it was enough. I was wasting a lot of energy and money trying to keep all the balls in the air and went to Meijer on Wednesday morning. It wasn't crowded, was well stocked and conversation with the cashier was good for my soul. We are covered for 12-14 days but when it is time to grocery shop again, I will be back. It's time. That being said, I can see us trying Hello Fresh again in the future for occasional meals. The food was delicious and we all enjoyed trying new recipes. Besides, I have a hefty credit in my account now as result of the issues they had with two of my orders.

Overall, we are managing the "shelter in place" well. Last week was easier with the warmer temperatures and sunshine than this week where I may have eaten more junk food than veggies as a coping mechanism. My happy place is on my swing but it was simply too cold for that this week. So I consumed snacks. Lots of snacks.

Our grandson grew a shark in his bathtub for Easter. It started as a little shark and grew in the water over the course of several days. He gave us frequent updates and was so very excited when it was ready to be played with. Over video chat he had the shark bite us and laughed his adorable big belly laugh when we played along. Goodness we are smitten.

In other news, despite being a bit sad over the decision, we tossed mail sent to our son because the sender referenced the world being upside down and how how scary things feel. It hasn't occurred to my kids to be afraid. Our kids are living their best lives and don't need well meaning adults to suggest they shouldn't be. But it highlighted for me how much more selective I need to be with who gets to share messages with me as well. The influencers I typically appreciate are in seasons of on-going fear and it simply isn't healthy to sit there alongside them.

And we tackled a project. It's like a puzzle but more expensive.....

 Ty spent twenty minutes knocking out all the spindles and then proudly announced he'd done all that work without taking a break. He has no idea how hilarious he is.

Lumber for a larger deck that isn't rotting will be arriving Tuesday.

Sunday, April 12, 2020

Easter Weekend

Legos. So many Legos.

Grill guts needed replaced again. We've gotten a lot of mileage out of this old grill with minimal maintenance. 

Hemlock Cliffs in English, Indiana. We will be back. The trails were rocky and Ty loved climbing off the trails and exploring under rock ledges, the tops of boulders and trekking through the creek.

On our way home from our hike, he asked if we could invite friends for hot dogs. To our surprise, their mom agreed as long as we stayed outside. So a chilly dinner it was. The social time was good for them all.

Adorable treats a neighbor left on our swing.
Easter 2015

It was so good to have Erin over today. I have missed my kid. We bribed her with breakfast and dinner to get a longer visit.

Another online service=another puzzle. I do not have the ability to listen to anything without keeping my hands busy. 

We attempted two video chats with Austin, but he was much too busy for us today. The upside was the opportunity to talk with his mom for quite awhile. We also video called my parents. Between the meatloaf for dinner and the lack of extended family gathering, it was an odd Easter Sunday. 

Austin loved coloring eggs with his parents in Georgia. We miss them all.

When Erin left, Ada chose to stay at Mimi's house.