Needless to say, the past few months have been extremely peculiar not just here in England, but for the entire world. Having just posted the adventures of my holiday to Aus and Bali back in January, I must count my lucky stars that I was able to complete my trip with no disruption as I flew back to the UK as planned at the beginning of February. Soon enough the effects of this pandemic hit home shores, so by mid March I was put on ‘Furlough’ from work and we watched on as the country went into almost full lockdown.
This will certainly be one of the most unique periods of life for our generation, as we learn to accept social distancing measures for an extended period of time. In the UK the lockdown has allowed us to get outside once a day for exercise and as we welcome in a particularly sunny springtime, it’s a blessing that we can still enjoy the gorgeous weather and boost our mood with some vitamin D.
Being on ‘Furlough’ from my job has given me the gift of time, so it’s been a great opportunity to get on with my ‘To Do’ list and finally see to those longer term projects which I’ve always wanted to do (more on this in a later post!). I’ve also been able to spend more time looking after my wellbeing as I get rested and can priorities those things which matter most to me; staying fit with home workouts, brushing up on my dance skills in the garden, cooking yummy creations in the kitchen, reading books, taking photos and of course, writing my own blog 🙂
Cooking has always been one of my favourite hobbies too, so I’ve been experimenting with a few new recipes and even tried some baking. The popular quarantine sweet treat which everyone has been making is banana bread and being my first time, I was impressed with my creation pictured above. With the sun shining over the past few weeks, I’ve also been making a lot of delicious fresh summer dishes, including this easy Greek salad.
Maintaining sanity during this time has pulled family, friends and community together as we all find ourselves in the same position. Our extended family now have a weekly ‘Zoom’ quiz every Sunday evening and my work colleagues organise regular drinks via video conference too. Creativity is key also as my Dad decided to host a neighbourhood quarantine disco from our back garden last weekend! Having posted fliers around our surrounding neighbourhood to notify them of the party and to text in with song requests, my Dad setup his sound system in the garden ready for two hours of music from 7-9pm on Saturday.
With the BBQ lit and the bubbles flowing, before we knew it requests for songs were flooding in! At 7pm on the dot we heard cheers from the neighbours in their gardens as we got the music pumping. By the end of the set, we counted over 70 messages from neighbours sending their song choices and thanking us for the disco. Being such a success, our plan is to do the next one to raise money for the NHS which I’m sure our neighbours will appreciate.
So as we continue forward in this period of uncertainty and apprehension, I remember how incredibly fortunate I am to be in my position during this pandemic. With my job secured, a comfortable home to reside in a lovely village and most of all a healthy family, I’m optimistic that my life will go back to normal once this all blows over. In the meantime, I hope this pause on our busy lifestyles will help us all slow down, appreciate the simple things and build a stronger relationship with loved ones as well as ourselves.