Six weeks into lockdown

The shops have sold out of playdough so we made some. (But toilet paper’s back.)

On Monday I got back to work (from home) after nearly two week’s break over Easter. My husband and I have now been doing the lock down thing for six weeks, the teenagers for five weeks, the primary schoolers for four.

Next week the schools our kids will start a return to face-to-face classes, with the eldest starting first next Thursday.

None of them are very keen, and I don’t blame them. They all miss playing their team sports, and the dearth of social outings on the weekends is getting to the teenagers, but they all also really liked their one or two week’s taste of the school-from-home thing.

Before the Easter holidays we made them get up early and stick to the same school day schedule for their online work, but still…but they tell me it’s so much more comfortable at home, plus they can wander into the kitchen at lunchtime and organise themselves much nicer food than the usual lunchbox!

No uniforms as well (and now it will be full winter uniform – long sleeves, dark tights for the girls etc. despite nearly 30-degree days), no waiting for buses, no lugging books and laptop from class to class. And I think they (mostly) like being around us more.

I’m in no great hurry to get back to my daily commute and busy open plan office either. I’m used to working from home and still have a nice little space here from my freelance writing days. I am a lot more focused and can get things done in less time. And I’m constantly phoning or emailing people so I don’t feel ‘remote’. I mostly miss physically going out on jobs and meeting people for interviews – I dislike feeling stuck at a desk in front of a computer all day every day.

Swirls in the soft grass alongside the cricket pitch

But the weather has been unremittingly gorgeous so I’ve been going to walks around the neighbourhood at least once or twice a day. When all goes back to normal – whenever or whatever that will be – I’ll have to find a way to keep the best bits going.

At first I wondered how the seven of would all get on stuck together all day every day for weeks – but in a big family there’s always plenty to do and usually someone to hang out with.

The Easter bunny and tooth fairy have managed to get around the travel restrictions. A LOT of baking has been happening. I warned my boss that when we do all get back to the office I may be unrecognisable. We’ve even had two April birthdays, a 16th and a 12th, the latter falling on ANZAC Day eve saw a cheesecake made with an ANZAC biscuit base.

The kids get to a local park most days, and shoot some hoops or play cricket together. One of the boys just got a baseball bat, glove and balls for his birthday and so now there’s that as well. We sometimes see neighbours or friends and in once case even a teacher out and about as well getting their daily exercise.

And of course there are phone calls and zoom meetings and emails, so none of us are feeling too isolated.

How are things going at your place?

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