Making The Best Out of Staying At Home

As a virgo, homebody, and introvert, I've been adapting to the stay at home order well. Staying in not only helps flatten the curve and protect ourselves and others, having so much time with my family days on end has also given us a chance to strengthen our bond, enjoy more activities together, and not surprisingly, we've seen our 4-year-old son showing a lot of growth in just in the past few weeks. 

I try everyday to stay positive but these are extraordinarily stressful times. With my husband and I both working from home, taking turns caring for our son while allowing time for my very pregnant self to rest has been challenging. As a business owner, I've had to make difficult decisions on the fly in the past month. I've closed the store since before the shutdown order came down in California out of concern for the health of my team and our customers. Closing the shop with currently no opening date in sight, combined with a slowdown with business in general, have definitely affected us as a small company. But Team Mien is pulling through and doing the best we can. I'm also 9 months pregnant today and I've had many moments when I had to turn off the news or my phone, do some deep breathing exercises, and tell myself everything will be okay with us delivering, at present, a stubbornly breech baby during a pandemic in a major hospital. We all worry for the health and safety of our loved ones, our family, and friends. While we have little control over what is happening with the virus spread around the globe, we do have full grasp of what we can do to keep ourselves and people we are quarantined with as happy, healthy, and at peace as we can.

So when I'm not worrying myself too much with the outside world, I am allowing myself to see and enjoy what we do have at the moment - a safe place to hunker down, our health, and the ability to stay connected to people we love.

I'm sharing a few simple things that give me some joy during this time and hope they give you some ideas to create moments of happiness where you are too. Take care.

Self Care

If you have little ones like I do, you may need your partner to takeover so you can get a moment to yourself. When I can get full cooperation from my boys, this is what I like to do to de-stress:

Light that fancy candle I save for special occasions only
Put on a face mask and grab that book I haven't finished
Watch an hour of my favorite show on my phone, in bed
Enjoy an uninterrupted conversation with my friend on the phone

    Cooking & Baking

    Dumplings and homemade breads - these are my favorite things to make from scratch. You can find some good recipes online for the dumplings/potstickers, sourdough boule, or a less stressful no-knead bread. Although they can be time-consuming and labor intensive, you can easily make bags and bags of dumplings and freeze them for future meals. The starter you have for the sourdough bread can also be turned into pizza dough, dinner rolls, calzones, which gives you endless meal options. I like to slice up the bread and freeze them. Not to mention, you can get the kids to help with the making of either one of these. You'll have a good laugh over the silly-shaped dumplings they make and the adorable, or scary-looking, doughy "snowmen". 

    Take It Outside, At Home

    It's easy to get comfortable staying in and not wanting to venture out but I know it's good for us to get some sunshine and fresh air. Some ideas...

    Have a picnic in the backyard or on the patio/balcony
    Take my laptop and sketch pad to the backyard and work while my son plays
    Gardening, watering the plants, pick flowers or pull weeds

    Hope we can all make the best out of these times. Stay well.

    First photo by Bümo Parent
    Second photo by Jenna Norman Photography
    Other than credited, all other photos by me