We are 8 days in to isolation now. JHogg has joined us at home and is very thankful for the fact we have an office set-up in our spare room (plus he gets to enjoy his feature wall handiwork from in there too). We’re keeping busy and Piglet has finally stopped asking where we are going to go every day. It’s getting both easier and harder in equal measures. I hadn’t worn shoes in well over a week until this evening which is bizarre (I’ve not bothered with a bra for half the time either!).

This evening Boris announced that we are going in to a lockdown for at least 3 weeks, but I predict it will go on much longer. It won’t change much for us as a family, but it does feel like a big step for the country as a whole.

Isolation Routine

With the schools and nurseries officially closed now I have tried to maintain an element of structure to our day. Piggie doesn’t have to have any structured learning, but he also can’t just run riot all day indefinitely. Even JJ is accustomed to going to swimming lessons and gymnastic classes through the week, giving structure to our days.

A bright picture of a white alarm clock next to a white cup and saucer
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I’ve started to implement very rough routine to our days through this strange period. It is not strict and it is largely led by the boys natural routine anyway – but I hope it will keep us sane.

7am – the boys tend to wake up around this time, but later would be better! We get up and have breakfast, JJ eats his own and steals mine too. A bit of chill out time with the tv and toys while I get some laundry on and sort out some dishes.

9am – Boys dressed and sorted for the day. We have been doing some Cosmic Kids Yoga some days to get us moving. Piggie has enjoyed the Pokemon one best, and JJ is hilarious at trying it out.

10am – Get outside. We’ve been out every day and it’s a lifesaver.

12pm – Lunch, then nap for JJ

1pm – An hour of activities for Piglet. Games or puzzles with me, playdoh or one of the educational activities we’ve found.

2pm – Piggie watches TV or plays while I rush around doing jobs or try to get some work done.

3pm – Wake JJ, have a snack and play

5pm – Kids dinner

6pm – Kids upstairs for bath, book and bed!

Getting Outside

We had our garden sorted last year and I am so thankful for it right now. The boys have been jumping on their trampoline, playing in the playhouse, using chalk on the walls and blowing bubbles. I bought the giant chalk on a whim and I’m glad I did as both boys have enjoyed it. Piggie even drew a picture of himself which I’ve never known him to do before. JJ has worked on some simple mark making, which he has carried through to our activities inside now too.

2 boys drawing on a brick wall will giant chalk
2 boys drawing on a brick wall will giant chalk
2 boys drawing on a brick wall will giant chalk next to a playhouse
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We are hoping to use this time to help Piglet learn to ride his bike. He’s still keen to just stick with his balance bike at the moment but he’s really too big for it. He’s had lots of scooter practice though. The fresh air is really needed right now, and it’s a chance for me to not have any distractions and play with the kids.

It was weird at first as through the winter we’ve not been in the garden much so we’re not used to being out there for extended periods – but we’ve got the hang of it now! JJ in particular loves going out and I’d hazard a guess that it’s his favourite time of the day.

A young boy wearing a blue jacket with crocodiles on it, kneeling on a trampoline
A wooden playhouse with a blue door and red trim
A boy lying on the grass and covering his eyes with his hand
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JHogg got involved in this part of our routine over the weekend. The boys helped us clean up the garden a bit, and then JHogg power washed the patio (with some really great “help” from Piggie) so we’re all set for lots of outdoor fun for the rest of the year.

A mother and son in grey coats smiling at the camera in the garden
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Food Delivery

I was getting a bit anxious about the ability to access the food we needed. It isn’t such a big problem for JHogg and I, but I didn’t want to rock the boat any more than necessary for the children. We got a home delivery today though, and I needn’t have worried.

I was able to get just about everything we asked for in one way or another. There were quite a few substitutions (a block or butter instead of spreadable, for example) but I don’t feel like we have been deprived at all. I even picked up some kids paracetamol and pasta for my sister who hadn’t been able to access them herself.

The person picking the shop must have been rushing though. I was sent an email stating that my order wouldn’t contain, amongst a few other things, any cheese. A block was definitely provided when it arrived at my door, so that was clearly an error. We also received duplicates of a couple of items, and for one substitution I received the item AND a substitution which baffled me. No complaints here though!

Doorstep Drop Off

I located my shoes this evening to drive a bag of toys, a birthday present and my sisters shopping to her house. Having left them on her doorstep and rung the bell, I drove away to waves from my nephews. It was a strange feeling, as usually a drop off of that kind would have involved me going inside, cuddles with my niece and a chat with the boys. We have spoken on facetime, and will continue to do so as our kids like to see each other. It’s just a very strange feeling!

3 boys standing on the beach facing the sea
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During this lockdown phase there will likely be a fair few doorstep drop offs still to come. My Gran lives alone and while my aunt has taken on the majority of her care at this time we are all on standby to get her anything she needs. We also hope my parents will join us back in the UK in mid-April and I’m sure we will have to drop them some essentials as they are lacking in quite a lot of the basics. But for now we’re just having to see how this all plays out!

Self Care

Time at home has really slowed us down. Even with the boys home 24/7 I still have a bit more time on my hands as work is very quiet at the moment (unsurprisingly). I’m taking it as a chance to catch up on things around the house, but also to take care of myself.

I have just finished my first isolation book. I borrowed The Sealed Letter by Emma Donoghue from a friend and finished it in about a week. I have quite a few books in mind to read next and I hope it’ll keep me busy for a while. I also did a jigsaw the other day which I haven’t done in years! It was quite therapeutic, but I had to finish it in 1 day in case the kids got to it. I’m hoping to have a jigsaw roll delivered in the hope I can make it a bit less rushed for the next one.

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