Work, Home and Out There

Welcome to my new temporary normal!

For the time being.

Parts of it may look like your new temporary normal.

With the current state of pandemic affairs, here’s what the past week has been like for this blogger.

WORK

Oh my word, it has been crazy busy. I have been going to work, but only because ours is a small office (less than 10 people) and I’d rather spreadsheet with two large monitors than squint at a laptop while listening to a cat snore.

We are a government agency, so there’s been a lot of pandemic planning and policy, video conferencing, spreadsheets, critical requests, daily reports, etc. I found out what this ZOOM thing is all about, spending about four hours this week on video conferencing. We’re allowing employees to work from home whenever possible, but not all employees have laptops or access. We’re trying to get everyone the supplies they need – face masks, Lysol wipes, disposable gloves, hand sanitizer (although soap and water will do the trick), paper towels, or whatever will help in keeping employees safe. We’re trying to stay safe and not panic. Without going into detail, our agency has a lot to consider, and take into action, to protect us and the public at large. Unfortunately, the last bit of business yesterday was a hiring freeze. No new hires until we get the green light.

The hiring freeze will take one thing off my plate for a while, but it is yet to be determined if I will stay busy or find time to electronically file purge.

HOME

Natasha is working from home as she works for a large manufacturing company that had not sent many people home as of Monday. She reported COVID-19 heebie-jeebies that made her pack up her stuff and stay home. I don’t blame her. She can control her home environment better than the work environment.

The cats have not felt a huge change other than they hear Natasha working through a closed bedroom door. Gibbs and Ziva have to stay put so as not to bother my roomie with cries for food or attention while she’s on the phone. Mom comes home close to her usual time, so there’s no difference in that sense. Perhaps with the stay-at-home weekends, they’ll figure out something is different. Or they’ll sleep at their usual times and not care.

Natasha and I are keeping our normal cleanliness routine without Lysol wipes. Too many icky chemicals that make our eyes water.  We make sure there is thorough hand washing and hope/pray for our continued health.

OUT THERE–>

The grocery store. It’s the only other place I go at this point. There are three stores I frequent, but trying to keep it to a minimum. If I have to pay a little more to only shop at one store, I will do that. I had to go to the mega grocery store the other day to get items the other two don’t carry, and I think I escaped unharmed. It’s anxiety inducing. I tried to keep my people distance, get what I needed and get out. I wore my gloves the entire time because the thought of touching things…

The yoga studio downtown is closed, but they are posting classroom videos on YouTube. The library is closed. My Saturday morning chai tea latte place is only open at the drive-thru. Church is closed, but they will be Facebook live on Sunday. My Life Group is meeting online. The dentist is closed for now, but my next appointment isn’t until July. I was going to take Gibbs and Ziva in for their annual physical, but now that is not possible and I know they are very thankful.

WHAT NOW?

So, the question remains, “What am I going to do with myself while social distancing?”

Answer: I have a non-inclusive list.

  1. Continue to go to work
  2. Skip yoga on weeknights
  3. Sleep in on the weekends
  4. Grocery shop only as needed
  5. Shop for other stuff online
  6. Clean out the mess underneath the bathroom sink. Maybe.
  7. Read books
  8. Bible journal
  9. Yoga at home
  10. Church at home
  11. Check out new music
  12. Harass the cats
  13. Let the cats harass me
  14. Feed the starving cats
  15. Go for walks
  16. Watch Star Trek (that’s the always normal)
  17. Write blog posts
  18. Read blog posts
  19. Play Bananagrams with Natasha
  20. Eat food and chocolate
  21. Hope for warmer biking weather
  22. Give virtual hugs
  23. Dust
  24. Take naps
  25. Keep happy and healthy thoughts for all of you as we all live out our new temporary normal.

Stream of Consciousness Saturday is the brainchild of author Linda G. Hill. Every Friday, Linda provides her followers with an inspiring blogger’s prompt. It can be a word or words and sometimes bonus points are involved (my favorite). Linda asks us to write without editing, other than correcting spelling errors.

Just go with the flow.

Like a babbling brook or rain drops. Click HERE if this type of writing floats your boat or helps with your decision-making. Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “cheek.” Use it as a noun or verb. Have fun!

33 responses to Work, Home and Out There

  1. Sounds to me like you’ve got this thing sorted. Keep Calm and Do Things at Home.

    I am not yet able to find a new normal because things keep changing. Mostly in regard to schools and what that will look like for the Youngest Son in his final year and casually employed me if they close. Husband is leaving job (already in the pipeline) but new job applications now on hold. No Income is not a new normal I want to get used to. But we are all mostly healthy, have good savings and are resourceful. We will get through.

    Hang in there, Mary!

    • bikerchick57 says:

      I’m hanging in! I hope that the work situation rectifies itself for your family and for many others around the globe. One of my neighbors is not working and she can least afford it out of everyone here. I am thankful for my job, but I don’t want anyone else to suffer the financial angst and loss.
      Stay safe and healthy and try to enjoy the family time as much as possible. Hugs!

  2. Dan Antion says:

    It sounds like you have a good handle on this, Mary. I hope we can all adapt and stay healthy. Many more places are closing here Monday night. Our needs are being met and we’re staying sane. Keep letting us know how you’re doing.

    • bikerchick57 says:

      My only angst right now is the grocery store visits. I have to run today for a few things like pasta, canned soups, frozen veggies, etc. Will be wearing the gloves and praying for the best. Be safe and well, Dan!

      • Dan Antion says:

        Be careful out there. I’ve been doing the grocery shopping here, but I’ve been trying to avoid the weekend – although there isn’t a difference these days for most people.

  3. Ally Bean says:

    It’s not so much the inconvenience of the pandemic, it’s the how will I handle it part of the pandemic that I focus on. #15 & #23 are high on my list, too.

    • bikerchick57 says:

      I do look forward to weekends without having to constantly run places and perhaps a weekend or two where I can be outdoors. Not looking forward to the bathroom cabinet cleaning and dusting, though! lol 😀

    • bikerchick57 says:

      Glad to know you have what you need, Judy. I hope and pray for all that we stay healthy and keep enjoying each other’s virtual company.

  4. Joanne Sisco says:

    I’ve been doing a lot of art work which puts me in a happy place. I’ve also been spending way more time on FB than I care to admit to. I think I’m developing an addiction for the many hilarious memes that are circulating.

    For a couple of days this week, Theo was acting very peculiar … I mean WAY MORE peculiar than normal. He would meow, and meow, and meow for no apparent reason that we could figure out. It finally occurred to me that he could feel that something was wrong. When I cleared off my desk and plunked him down beside me while I worked, he calmed down, slept on my desk, and has been fine ever since. Our animals intuit more than we give them credit for.

    Be well!

    • bikerchick57 says:

      The Theo yowling over nothing must have been a kitty mind meld from Gibbs. As I’m typing this, Gibbs is in my arms, kneading and purring…because he wouldn’t be quiet otherwise. I’m glad your boy found his peace and I’ll tell Gibbs to quit communicating.

      I saw one of your creations on Facebook (I’m there more than I should be too). Marvelous, Joanne! Being artistic and creative truly is a gift, but also spiritual therapy that helps us get through the anxious times.

      • Joanne Sisco says:

        Interesting that Gibbs is doing the same thing. While Theo is high maintenance at the best of times, it was nothing like this. Last night he did something similar, and we moved into the living room to continue our conversation so Theo could sit on my lap – purring and kneading.
        I think he’s realized he now has a new trick for manipulation 😏

        thank you for the kind feedback about my art work. I am so grateful right now to have this creative outlet.

      • Joanne Sisco says:

        We appear to have hit the jackpot with cats who have a Level 10 Black Belt in Manipulation.

  5. loisajay says:

    I think I retired at the right time, Mary. My work buddies are working from home and so over Zoom meetings. Bad enough being micromanaged in the office, but in the (constant!!) Zoom meetings…..I feel for them. Your list is great. I added ‘Baking’…..just in case. Baking and freezing….not sure how long this will last, but my freezer is my place of last resort. You, Natasha and the kitties stay safe, Mary. My bright spot is seeing everyone here. Thankfully, we are adhering to the social distancing…. Much love, my friend. My cats send Meows to yours.

    • bikerchick57 says:

      My two bosses will be in daily ZOOM meetings for awhile as we continue to check-in, plan, monitor, etc. I’ll probably be invited to some myself in lieu of the normal meetings.

      Baking sounds great. I can almost smell it, although I will not be doing it myself. Instead, I may make a pasta sauce today.

      Gibbs and Ziva sleepily send Meows back and I am sending love and hugs to you, Lois.

  6. J-Dub says:

    Nice list of 25. Mine is very similar except I work from home now. The entire company is shifting to that. Last count as of Friday is 55% so far. Remainder expected by March 30th. Question remains what’ll happen with the big ole building when this is over.

    • bikerchick57 says:

      I think working from home has been a trend with many companies. It save them the cost of renting or building physical space when employees can do the same at home as they can in an office. I doubt we will do that because of our purpose, and I prefer the comraderie of my co-workers. We have a really nice office culture.

      • J-Dub says:

        We did too, still do I guess and hope to get back to that one day. Our culture is our secret sauce. I find myself much more brazen at home. Not liking that part of my personality. Week 1 down. Starting Week 2 fresh on Monday with promises to not be snarky! lol

      • bikerchick57 says:

        Good luck with that. Remember, if no one hears the snark, it never really happened. 😉

  7. JoAnna says:

    You are nudging me to step outside my comfort zone with Zoom since that’s where my church is now. And doing yoga on my own needs some self discipline. A video might help. Thanks for the inspiration!

    • bikerchick57 says:

      I have yet to do yoga in the livingroom, so I understand about self-discipline. Today, even though it’s cold, I think I need to get outside and go for a walk.
      Zoom is not difficult to maneuver. If I can figure it out, so can you. 🙂

    • bikerchick57 says:

      I just occupied 10 seconds of my weekend by eating a piece of chocolate. I wonder how many pieces I would need to occupy the entire day. Hmmm…
      Purrs on the fur, Teagan!

      • Now that’s a good experiment. LOL. I’m not much of a candy person, but I love extra dark chocolate. A small square is usually enough to satisfy. My favorite is Lindt Dark Chocolate wit Sea Salt. I haven’t seen it very often since I moved here. A lot of products and brands are different from one side of the country to the other.

  8. joey says:

    I am happy to read this and glad you’re well as can be expected. I called the vet before picking up meds last week. When I signed, the tech offered me hand sanitizer immediately, and then wiped the counter and the door as I left. I do think most ‘walk in’ places are doing that, as that was my experience when I picked up my specs that day, too. The grocery tho… Ugh.
    I wish I felt well. That’s pretty much it for me, myself. Globally, I wish this was not happening. Lots of worry of ifs and whens. Hard on the psyche.
    Comforted by social media friends and posts like these ❤

    • bikerchick57 says:

      Keep your chin up, Joey, and I’m praying that you stay away from the virus. Our Governor is shutting down non-essential business and I’m now working from home. A little safer…

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