The Covid-19 pandemic

I think we’re just about to finish Week 7 of Corona Virus lockdown. It’s been a surreal experience. I knew that there was always the possiblity of a World wide pandemic occurring, but to actually have it happen, and currently live through it… it feels strange and unusual.

We’re really lucky though. Lisa is still employed, and I’m still working. We’re both able to achieve most everything we need to do for work from home. I mean, Lisa already was doing that; but for myself, even though there were some initial challenges, it’s been pretty darn good!

We’ve been pretty careful when going out to do any errands. Face masks are always worn; and we carry hand sanitizer with us. Lisa has been doing most of the grocery runs. I’ve made some visits to Home Depot and Canadian Tire to buy soil and plants. But mostly, the majority of our time has been spent at home.

It started off with 2 weeks of spring break for the kids, way back on March 13th. The kids got off school, and they would not go back. Man, it seems like yesterday, yet at the same time, so long ago. We didn’t really have a routine in place yet; and it was scary reading the news on a daily basis seeing where this thing was headed towards. All of a sudden, we all knew about this ‘curve’ and how we all needed to flatten it by social distancing.

I still recall telling my Dad not to go to the gym anymore, and to stay home with Mom. It’s been oddly ‘regular’ for the kids though. They just seem to adapt, and honestly, they don’t feel like it’s all that different.

For my sanity though and the kids, we’ve fallen into a regular routine now. Monday to Friday, the kids have a daily schedule. Then on the weekends, it’s kind of just open; and they get a break (along with us). Here’s the schedule that we set for them:

The weekdays are a bit of a challenge though. At the beginning of each week, the kids have their week of assignments and work that is sent to them from their teachers. When I have to work, and simultaneouly keep them on schedule… it is difficult (especially if I’m on a call). Lisa’s pretty busy all day upstairs in the office, and then she comes downstairs about 15 minutes prior to noon to preprare lunch for us. (speaking of which, her meals have been stellar during this time… more on that later). A lot of the time, Isla needs direction on her assisgnments, and that can be time consuming. They’re both really good though, they plough through their work and are good students.

Fortunately they’re pretty self sufficient, especially Connor. During Spring Break, we started them on a typing regiment, where they would work on their typing on a keyboard every day. It’s been very useful since home school started up. Connor has been using a laptop to email his teachers and to submit his homework. They both also take photos of their homework, and send it via email, or submit it via the Richmond School Board portal. Connor and Isla also have their own email addresses that they’ve begun to use as well.

Here’s some journal work that they did, where they wrote letters to their grandparents.

Here’s a report that Isla had to do for school, after having an interview with Ye Ye.

They’re definitely learning different lifeskills during this time. The one I’ve already mentioned above… technology. Things like using a computer, typing, video conferencing, emailing, etc.

Other things too, such as exercising, and working out. On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays; they run around the block. 2 times around for Isla which works out to 1800 meters, and 3 times for Connor which is 2700 meters. It takes Isla about 12 minutes to complete it. Connor has gotten his 3 laps down from about 17 minutes when he first started, to mid 13’s. Impressive!

On Tuesdays and Thursdays they’ve been doing Zoom video workouts with Andrew, our next door neighbour. Even though Connor and Andrew have also been social distancing, they’re still able to make games up, and play outside at a distance. They’ve been playing basketball on their own respective hoops.

They actually did this workout with one another unprompted by us.

Hmmm, what else. Oh yes, the kitchen. Isla and Mommy have been doing a bunch of baking of which Isla loves to do. Connor, Isla and Mommy has also been cooking together. They’ve made gyozas together, along with wontons, french fries, pancakes, cookies, churros, bubble tea, and the list goes on. We’ve been spoiled rotten by Lisa’s cooking. Here’s just a sample. It’s definitely made life really great during this lock down! You can check out some of her other cooking on Insta.

They’ve been playing their guitars as well. Sadly, their music teacher disconnected his phone so we’ve been unable to reach him. So Isla’s essentially playing the same thing everyday. Connor however has been doing some Andy Guitar on Youtube. At least they’re both getting some practice.

I made a space for their guitars as well.

They’ve been doing a bit of cleaning (the one time). At least the kids fold their own clothes now.

Oh, yes, another life skill… growing their own food. I built a cedar planter so the kids could grow some food. They’re pretty excited about it. So far, we’ve planted spinach, brocolli, peas and snap peas. Crossing our fingers that they’ll turn out!

They’re still taking part in their Abacus classes, of which they use Zoom to do as well.

There also has been a lot of play. Connor has scheduled tablet time at 1pm and 7pm for 30 minutes. At those hours, he Zooms Jacob and Matthew, and they play Golf or Battlelands. Isla plays some game on her tablet as well. At 2:30pm, Connor gets 1 hour of xbox time with Andrew, where they also Zoom with one another and participate in the same game together simultaenously.

Luckily, Isla and Connor get along really well. They play well together, and really enjoy their time with one another. Sometimes during their outside time, they’ll play Nerf Guns against one another.

In terms of leisure, we’ve mostly been at home, but we did go to the beach one day. We also had a picnic once just outside the Richmond oval. We’ve also been chilling in the backyard. Connor and I have been throwing the football around (of which Connor has now learned how to throw a spiral), and playing lots of basketball. Isla’s dribbling has improved immensely, and she’s now able to consistently shoot! I’ve also been working on throwing a baseball with her. I want her to have a great throwing arm as she gets older. We’ve been riding the bikes around the neighbourhood as well.

Oh… yes, grooming. Lisa cut Isla’s hair, very well I might add. I also cut Connor’s, and my hair. (very well i might add as well hahaha)

As you’ve seen from many of my other posts, I’ve been doing a lot of renovating. From painting, to caulking, to trim, to baseboards, to the stairwell, installing new electrical outlets, building a cedar planter, etc. I’ve been incredibly productive, and haven’t really slowed down all that much. I barely watch any TV so that had definitely contributed to my productivity.

Lisa has discovered TV though, hahaha. She’s been hooked on Korean dramas. What lured her in was this one on Netflix called, Crash Landing Over You. (I think she watched it 3 times). She has since moved on to other ones.

I’ve been able to continue working out as well. My friend was kind enough to lend me some equipment, so working out daily has been able to keep me sane.

I also installed a pull up bar in the garage!

I’ve also been running, from 5 to 10km. I actually ran over 11km for the first time a couple of weeks ago. Lisa’s also been running, and she’s learned to enjoy it! (at least how it feels afterwards)

As I mentioned before, we’ve really settled into a routine. Case in point, at 7pm nightly, the kids have their tablet time; and Lisa and I go for a stroll around the neighbourhood with Toffee. We come back, the kids get off their tablets, and we have some time together. Whether that’s outside playing sports, or inside baking. Then the kids get ready for bed around 8:30 (yes, later I know), and they get 10 minutes of talking time with either parent prior to bedtime. The kids have also been making daily facetime calls to their grandparents as well.

Lisa thinks the kids actually have been loving the lock down. I can’t disagree. I’ve enjoyed our time immensely as a family, and it’s nice seeing the kids grow right in front of our eyes. Literally, and figuratively. I can’t imagine what it’d be like if we didn’t get along with one another!

Oh, one last thing. Isla lost her first tooth today!

Here’s a cute video she created on my phone (of which I didn’t know she even did!)

That’s kind of it in a nutshell. We’ve been staying happy, and most importantly safe, during these times. We obviously miss our family and friends, but thanks to modern technology; we are able to stay in touch with all of them. I feel Lisa’s actually been able to connect with her girlfriends more consistently on weekly Friday night Zoom calls for example (with a glass of wine, or whiskey in hand). So we’ve obviously been making the best of these weird times.