giraffes munching on their lunch
Children, Family, Fitness, Reading, Work

Staying home, staying safe – week 14

This is a little diary of our fourteenth week in social isolation (well, ish by this point), encumbered by home learning, working from home, and himself in work from time to time. It seems a very long time since this all started now. Here are the highlights and lowlights.

See what happened in week 13.

What will week 15 bring?

Stay safe everyone, I hope you’re doing ok. xxx


Monday’s sweetest moment was seemingly insignificant, but I like to think its evidence that we’re bringing up balanced anti-stereotype boys. Maybe I’m reading a lot into it but 8.5 year old large boy came in from playing, cleared the lunch dishes and loaded the dishwasher while I was on a work call. I hadn’t asked, not even suggested vaguely. He didn’t assume mum would do it, or anyone else. He just saw a household chore that needed doing and got on with it. OK so I’d lay money it doesn’t happen again before school holidays, but I’ll revel in a small success.

At tea time on Tuesday I was struggling to find any highlights. But actually our new vacuum cleaner arrived so we won’t be living in such filth anymore. Then I went to water my veggies and found two courgettes, several cucumbers, 3 squash and a whole bunch of tiny cucurmelons. I had been unsure how productive the garden might be this year, but at last it started to look up. The sun was shining strongly so I even grabbed 10 minutes on the patio before the kids’ bedtime.

Large boy received a letter from my Grandma on Wednesday. We’ve tried to establish pen pals before, how amazing would it be if he writes to his GG regularly? She sent him a reading list and a Michael Morpurgo book. He was super pleased to read her letter, it was lovely.

Large boy replied to his GG on Thursday, writing her a lovely letter and asking me to print photos to send her. Small boy made a PowerPoint slide about how to stay safe in the sun with some epic spelling “stay sayf and wair suncreem”. In the evening he video called his birthday twin buddy and played making their faces into pizzas and unicorns. My work wife also took the time to apologise for being uninvested in new skills and super critical of everything earlier in the week – that’s why she’s my work wife, we can have differences of opinion and approach without it affecting our mutual respect.

Friday was small boy’s fifth birthday. We had a fabulous day, opening gifts and then going to Chester Zoo. It poured on the way there, but by lunch time we had glorious sunshine. Back home we got his new scooter and water pistol out in the garden, had Chinese take away and bed time stories.

We spent Saturday recovering from Friday’s exertions: shopping, school work collection thanks to a kind reception mum, planning next week, and unpacking toys. We took the scooters and new RC car to the park between storms and then chilled with Thor on TV. I finally took the plunge and created a Facebook page for this blog: Come evening the lovely T.B.C. kindly promoted my page:

And then, despite by truly awful mood, my day was improved even further with a message from my hairdresser with an appointment time. Woo hoo!

Large boy and I went for a run on Sunday morning. He did a whole 1.8km without stopping except to fall over. I added another loop to make 2.5km, no knee pain! In the afternoon we had a blustery walk and I ordered small boy’s new passport – its about to expire and who knows, a miracle might happen.


I could moan about work on Monday but I don’t really want that to become a feature. Besides, it wasn’t work per se that got me down. It was my usually wonderful work wife being rather obstructive and cantankerous. She’s dealing with loads of crap at the moment so I’m not going to hold it against her. However, she seems to expect a new project to be handed to her on a platter and spoon fed. Well, we can’t be experts before we start learning and in our current staffing situation you have to start working on content while learning from scratch. What does she think they rest of us have had to do? But instead of digging around and getting her hands dirty she’s watching hours of YouTube videos and trawling mountains of online help before even opening a file. I had to be quite pushy and tell her to stop writing in Word, just open the content editor and figure it out in there. Gaaa! Rant over.

We had a few home learning grumbles on Tuesday. Large boy and comprehension really don’t get on, small boy cried over red words and then had tears again while playing in the garden for some unfathomable reason to do with large boy jumping over the pop up goal. Pretty minor list of imperfections as things go.

The thermometer on my desk hit 28°C on Wednesday. I love warm weather and sitting out on a day like that is blissful. Being chained to my desk, less so. Its stuffy and uncomfortable, at least I have my sunshine to keep me cheerful.

Come Thursday evening I realised that I’d missed part of my planning for small boy’s birthday. Gifts wrapped, decorations up, day trip booked, cake purchased, picnic lunch planned. But what the hell to wear. 20 minutes searching through boxes of summer clothes, at last I found a full length summer dress and a short one to choose between. As it turned out, all unnecessary as the weather broke overnight.

Going to a public attraction like the zoo on Friday, even as lockdown has been lifted a bit, was pretty stressful. Loads of people seemed oblivious to the space around them or the one way systems in place. That was the only downer on an otherwise excellent day.

I sent himself to the supermarket on Saturday morning. He only got one 4 pint bottle of milk, we need two each week. Last week we had used less and only needed one but he got two. Cue a blazing stand up argument, both letting our tempers flare and in the meantime the boys fell out upstairs. Hopefully this served as a life lesson for the boys that mum and dad can raise their voices in disagreement, with honesty and no fear that it changes the love and respect they have for each other. Honestly, I was in a foul mood and himself didn’t really deserve the third degree. Rage cleaning the bathrooms helped a bit. Attempts to blame it on hormones failed, it’s a week til then.

On Sunday I was reflecting on my week and my blog. I feel like I’ve had to really push to get views lately, comment threads don’t seem to be driving traffic and I’m feeling a bit down hearted. Maybe everyone else is feeling fatigued by weekly updates too? It’s nice for me to take the time to think of a positive and acknowledgement a negative every day, but I’m planning to stop in three weeks when the school term comes to an end. Maybe I need to make a change?

What would you like to see more of? Weekly rounds ups, random reflections, occasional rants about petty annoyances?

Things I wrote

ITP, our experience

Simple pleasures

And now he’s 5

23 thoughts on “Staying home, staying safe – week 14”

  1. I feel your pain and your joy! I have had a terrible day today, work was rubbish, we’ve had to postpone our wedding and its generally just MEH! But there have been some good moments through the week.

    I hope things are better for you this week.

    I love chester Zoo, Hope little one had a lovely birthday x x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, he had an ace day.

      Work was horrid for me too. Hope you have a better day tomorrow. Sorry about your wedding. Hope you can rebook it and have a fabulous day.


  2. Oh I bet it was lovely to visit the zoo! It’s great to think we can start to plan days out again. I love the penpals idea – I love writing letters and reaching them. There is something so personal and thoughtful about them I feel. Thank you for sharing this post.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Sounds like you had a roller coaster of a week. It’s good that you acknowledged all of your emotions and what was causing you to feel that way.

    I enjoy your weekly updates. I haven’t written for my blog in awhile because of work and personal responsibilities, but I am trying to find a balance. For a little while there in the beginning of the pandemic I had reduced hours which allowed me more time to do things for myself.

    Glad you got to the zoo. I imagine it would have been a bit crowded and possibly chaotic. It’s nice for the kids to do something different and fun. Where I am we are starting to reopen in phases. I am not rushing to do certain things as much as I would love to. It’s all about how the establishment is managing crowds and their policies.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Another busy but good week. There will always be downs with the ups. I’m glad small boy had a lovely birthday too and Pen Pals is just a great idea. I had quite a few as a child and loved getting letters from them. Hugs xx

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Awww – Thank you for including us in your highlights. What an honour and it was our pleasure. Your highlights sound amazing and you are bringing up such beautiful caring boys, who assume responsibility. I am sure its not easy but they sound great. Glad small boy had a lovely birthday too and Pen Pals is just a glorious ides. We love writing letters and think its very special way to express feelings and connect. Much love xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! Go mutual appreciation society!

      Yeah, I love writing letters. It’s a great skill and so valuable for my grandma because she’s not on the internet. It helps her stay connected with us too.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh it’s so exciting when the garden starts to yield. Our potatoes are flowering and we have a couple of tiny tomatoes starting to form. So far, we’ve managed to keep the bunnies out which is huge progress over last year.

    Liked by 1 person

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