My youngest son holding seed raising punnets

Joyfulgiving366 – Day 80 – Social isolation begins

When I dropped my seven-year-old off at his 1/2 class (a tad late, it was one of those days), I couldn’t help but notice there was a giant poster at the entrance explaining what social distancing went. How hard for kids aged 5 to 8 to have to learn not to touch each other or play close to each other? It broke my heart. And yet it was only the beginning of the day.

2020 Fire Relief Crafting Circle

Do you remember those squares in lovely teal wool I knitted? Well, I finished them a few weeks ago and have been waiting for the right time to drop them off to Sharon Casey, the lady who started the campaign. The squares are being made into beautiful rugs that will go to victims from the 2019/2020 bushfires.

Squares of knitted squares in teal
I knitted around eight of these

As part of my new wellness routine, I decided to go for a walk to drop them off as the address was only in the next suburb. It was a long walk as it turned out. And I arrived as Sharon was doing a news interview with a local station, WIN TV. When entering the premises, they had additional hygiene requirements (wash hands on entry and use a paper towel to turn the toilet doorknob). And even handing over the knitting, I was careful not to touch Sharon.

Sharon in front of the media

While I didn’t mean to TV-bomb the interview, I was glad a) to be able to drop off the squares before self-isolation set in, and b) that I was able to take some photos of her. With the current COVID-19 crisis, it’s easy to forget that many people are still rebuilding from the trauma and devastation of the fires. What Sharon has started is remarkable, and if you are able to support her project, please join her Facebook Group.

Sick kids

After my longer-than-intended walk, I got home and got stuck into writing. My recipes with Australia’s Best Recipes are going gang-busters. People are really into home cooking. Could it be that they need to use up all their pantry staples?

Then, just as I was halfway through a new article, I got news that my 10-year-old was sick at school. He had a mild fever, was nauseous, and the school said he was vomiting. I raced to school to pick him up, fearing the worst. It turned out he did have a mild fever, and was nauseous, but hadn’t actually thrown up. Once I got him home, made him ginger cordial and gave him paracetamol, he declared he felt much better. He ate all of his dinner without a problem, and was playing on the computer within an hour.

Then the school rang with news that his younger brother was ill. “Oh, no – not vomiting as well!” I said.

“No, he’s got a sore back.”

Hubby came home to look after my eldest son, and then I went to pick up the seven-year-old. And that’s when the reality of social isolating (not just social distancing) kicked in.

Even though I’m pretty sure both kids are fine, I can’t with good conscience send them back to school – at least not this week, and possibly not for two weeks. They were supposed to have a playdate of sorts with a good friend this afternoon, and then I had a course at the Canberra Business Chamber tomorrow and the Between the Lines professional development course run by the ACT Writers Centre on Thursday night (not only was I going to attend, but I was going to bring a plate of food to share as well). I’ve cancelled my course tomorrow, advised the ACT Writers Centre and I’m also reconsidering an event with Libraries ACT this weekend as well.

I’ve told the kids they are doing homeschooling, and that involves no devices or computers in the morning. They are not happy about that at all, but it is what it is. I can’t send them to school as yet, and I can’t have them hanging around not learning or doing anything, either.

And now I’m worried about hubby as well. Do you remember our friend that we made chicken soup for? He was sent home from hospital with pneumonia. He was self-isolating waiting for test results. And they came back on Friday. No, he doesn’t have COVID-19; he has lung cancer. He’s never been a smoker, and he has no family history. It sucks. Big time. Hubby offered to take him to the hospital appointment tomorrow and now has to be aware of taking extra social distancing precautions. I know you don’t know him, but please hold him in your thoughts and prayers.

Meanwhile, all sorts of events and other things are being cancelled. My boys were looking forward to playing NRL this season, and their local club has suspended the start of training until further notice. I’ve had four cancellations at my Scullin AirBnB, although thankfully none today. I’m unsure whether I should go to the pool anymore, even though it’s not crowded. And I’m getting inundated with COVID-19 related emails from virtually any business I have contact with reassuring me of their measures.


My youngest son holding seed raising punnets

Amidst all the news about shortages in the supermarkets, we thought it was time to plant our winter crops. We may have left it too late – we don’t know. We have a few things growing on the balcony, but it’s a bit too shady. We put in a few seeds and we’ll see. Hopefully, we can get some seedlings from somewhere (assuming not all shops and markets are closed) if we need to. I tried to do it as a family – got one child involved, the other remained on his computer!

How are you coping with social distancing or social isolation?

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