Coronavirus Part 2, Day 33- Time Management


Today at H-E-B Penny and I went shopping for eggs and popsicles and a few other things I can’t remember. We’re in the habit of wearing our masks now, the hand sanitizer thing takes a little more intentional remembering but that’s much improved as well. The one thing I haven’t gotten into is the six-feet apart thing. It’s difficult in the grocery store when everyone seems to be standing around in the bread aisle at the same time. Maybe some social distancing things will stick, and other things won’t.


Coronavirus Part 2, Day 32- Fuller House

Penny and Poppy

Penny is outside crying on the front porch looking for her lost tooth. It had started to rain this afternoon so she and I grabbed the umbrella and went for a walk down the street. When we returned to the porch and resumed binge watching Fuller House, Penny’s tooth fell out. This was exciting and she was happy. Then for some reason she threw her tooth into the gravel and I was amazed when she walked right over, found it, and came back to her seat. Then she threw it again. Now it’s lost. I told her the tooth fairy is still good for it.

“But you’re the tooth fairy!” Penny said.

“I know. And I saw your tooth. So you’re good.”

She’s over it now, which is good because the tooth is gone forever.


Coronavirus Part 2, Day 19- Drama in Florida

It’s the day before our Memorial Day weekend begins. Steve has off tomorrow and is not set to return to virtual work until Tuesday. I have therefore submitted my formal request to him to have a work-day for myself. My request went like this:

“Dearest, since you’re off tomorrow, I have stuff I’ve been needing to work on that I haven’t been able to do. So I’m going to be upstairs for a long time.” I said, frying an egg.

“Oh really? That means I need to find something to do with the kids,” Steve said, receiving said fried egg.

Little does he know that even though he is off tomorrow, the kids still have virtual school. I will make sure to mention this.

Cardinal. Backyard. Photo processing and over saturation credit: Penny

At the moment the sky is overcast (yay!) and the weather is comfortable. Poppy is sitting next to me sopping wet because Penny has decided to play with the hose. At one point she came up next to me shouting, “surprise sneak attack!” At which point I threw one of my own temper tantrums about, you know her being jerk getting me and my electronics wet. I mean really they show these hammy kids on the Disney Chanel pull pranks on adults and no one flips out? I’m glad to say no iPads or Canon EOS6D cameras were harmed today.

In other news there is drama in Florida (which seems to often be the case in Florida no matter what’s going on) around their reporting of the Coronavirus cases in the state. Of note it appears that the first states to move on ending lockdown restrictions mostly reside in the South, which is culturally interesting, and there’s speculation our major cities in the South will see a COVID resurgence.

I’ve been following bloggers in different parts of the world write about how the pandemic has played out in their areas. Restrictions appear very strict in South Africa (still a ban on tobacco and alcohol), and re-opening the economy has exposed fissures along white collar/blue collar class lines in the UK. In Ireland people are weary (and sometimes defiant) of the public health restrictions, as they are in many places at this point. Now it’s our turn. Maybe here soon, we’ll start to see what the Coronavirus crisis reveals about us.

Coronavirus Part 2, Day 17- Face Mask Drama

I’m sitting out front by the curb. There’s a nice breeze going and lots of shade since the sun is making its descent and not beating down like it was earlier. I’m out by the curb on a broken lawn chair that Penny managed to crack after throwing it in a fit. I have it set for the recycling to pick up.

I spent the better part of the day out shopping with Penny. Poppy, my beloved dog, the apple of my eye, dug a massive hole over the course of several months that I am finally sick of looking at. I’m not a fru-fru woman, but I don’t like manual labor. On my deployment I was glad to have a bunch of big guys on my team because there was always someone to handle my luggage. One of them would only have to twist my arm, and offer once. Check it out, I think my lawn is coming together.

Photo credit: Steve, from the comfort of his office.

On our way home from Lowes and Hobby Lobby, Penny and I stopped at Subway to pick up some lunch. Everyone was wearing face masks and social distancing and all that. I ordered us the Tuesday sub special and scooted along, when a lady behind me arrived at the counter. The sandwich artists asked her what kind of bread she wanted.

“I don’t want anything from you with your nose sticking out!” She left immediately.

“That lady didn’t have to be so dramatic,” said Penny.

The lady had been in line for a while, and obviously wanted to make a big deal about the fact that both sandwich artist had their noses sticking out from on top of their face masks.

Personally, I don’t get confrontational about these things. If they had been wearing no face mask I would have just left. But I’m not one of those people who makes formal complaints on people just trying to earn their hourly wage. Besides, they both wore glasses (which I have read get foggy with the face mask thing) and frankly I felt bad because this is all just so unfortunate that now, anyone in the business of handling food is going to get the third degree just for doing their job and handling food. I mean, let’s try and be reasonable? I don’t know…

Oh. Speaking of face masks. Here’s a picture of Penny and I at Hobby Lobby today. Our face masks were made by my mom and sent over from Florida a few weeks ago. It’s important to note that my mom has always enjoyed sewing things for the family.

Now, take a look at this picture from Disney World, circa 1992. Notice the print on my dress. Notice the print of my face mask.

It’s the same fabric. My mom assures me that my dress from 1992 is still in tact.

I knew that print looked familiar!

Coronavirus Part 2, Day 12- Daring to Discipline

Eggs and jalapeños for breakfast. Photo credit: Penelope

I don’t know if there would have been fewer deaths under Obama, but I know we’d all feel better.


It’s hot and humid today in Houston, the sky is threatening to open up and rain just to cool things off. In Coronavirus news, today I learned that in South Africa they mandated a ban on alcohol and tobacco as part of their lockdown. South Africans are expecting the government to lift the ban soon. I’m not saying our government is perfect, but a ban on alcohol and tobacco is rough.

Penny has refused to do her work, but unfortunately for her I woke up this morning of the mindset that I was going to get through to her today. I even took her to our credit union and withdrew $20, broken down into $1 bills, quarters, dimes, and pennies so I could teach her about tens and ones and why you line them up to add and subtract them. We did not make it through the word problem set. She’s upstairs playing the harmonica. No iPad.

Birdwatching. Brewers Black Bird or Common Grackle?

Speaking of waking up, I learned a new trick from this book Liturgy of the Ordinary which has this section at the back about establishing rituals. I really liked this ‘ritual’ idea, rather than the dreaded word, ‘habit’. So, rather than wake up and reach for my phone, I wake up, I get up, I pray and contemplate, and then I reach for my phone. Because the moment I reach for my phone, the noise of the day has started and I’m already behind.

So I braced myself and spiritually prepared for what’s about to happen this evening now that I’ve banned media because both my kids failed to do their work. I remember telling my dad one day that the kids behaved poorly at church. Steve and I were supposed to enact some consequence but had intentionally forgotten about it and my house just went about the business of having a peaceful Sunday.

“The trouble is, that if I ground the kids from going outside, it’s like I’m punishing myself too,” I told my dad.

“Yes, but this way you will punish yourself twice. The first time when you put up with the bad behavior again, and the second time when you enforce the original punishment.”

Touché dad. Touché.

Poppy. Photo credit: Penelope