Our family diary during the COVID-19 outbreak: week 2
Updated: Apr 23
A look back at our week: what we've been up to, how we're feeling and reflections.
Week 2: Monday 23 - Sunday 29 March 2020
I can't believe another whole week at home has gone by. Things have been very different this week. On Tuesday (24 March) Boris Johnson put the country into lock down. It meant many of us had to be a bit more imaginative with how we entertained our families, managed work deadlines and weaved in home schooling.
Thankfully, and I really do mean this, our family are all still well. A few of us have question marks over whether we've had the Coronavirus. I'm even questioning whether I had it a few weeks ago when I was ill for about 2 weeks. But, I guess we'll never know until we can get access to tests. Thankfully, from the family members who might have had it, none of us have been struck down that badly.
I hope you're all still well too?
I do think this whole situation will make many of us think about how we lived our crazy, busy lives. I used to think time flew. This week it hasn't. I admit there have been plenty of times when I wished for an hour on my own. But, there have also been times when we've been happy and enjoying each others company too.
Anyway here it is...here's our diary for week 2.
Week 2: Monday 23 - Sunday 29 March 2020
How we're feeling
Last week we were feeling really unsettled. Monday this week was very much the same. Jack was now officially at home, and despite the Coronavirus numbers rising, many of us were still living quite normal lives.
I was questioning whether we should see our parents and also the places we could visit with the children i.e. whether to play in parks or not. I had a lot of question marks over many situations.
Boris then put the country into lock down on Tuesday. If I'm honest, I was quite relieved. The decisions I had hanging over my head were now decided for me.
This week has had ups and downs...
On Tuesday this week we were all pretty grumpy. There was no particular reason, I think we were all just adjusting to our new routine.
Jack was not in the mood for 'school', Erin did not like having Jack around, and I was struggling with the lack of personal space and constant squabbling.
I quickly realised we needed to put some ground rules in place and form some kind of structure. This wasn't going to work for weeks on end!
Home schooling has been challenging...
The biggest change for us all at the moment is getting used to home schooling Jack. I made a decision quite quickly that realistically I wouldn't be able to spend more than an hour each day teaching Jack. It's impossible with Erin around.
Now we "open school" at 12pm when Erin has her nap. We do a bit of English, a bit of maths, and then as a treat I find Jack a phonics, spellings or numbers learning app on the iPad while we wait for Erin to wake up.
I haven't completely followed what teachers have set us, we have gone off piste, but so far getting Jack to do something is a bonus! I'm just hoping he doesn't fall too far behind his peers.
Runs and walks, on my own, have been my saviour!
Thank goodness Boris has allowed us to get out once a day for exercise. Has anyone else found this has been the thing keeping them together?
On Tuesday when we were having a 'low' day, I ran and cried most of the time while I was running. It was the best release I'd had all day and I felt SO much better for it when I came home. It allowed me to put everything into perspective. I had my family at home safe and well. What more could I ask for?
I haven't managed to run much more than this, but just a walk on my own at the end of the day has been bliss.
What we've been up to...
This week has been an adjustment. Thankfully I had a few arts and crafts bits stashed away for rainy days over the Easter holidays. These have been great! There have been so many lovely things online for us to try too. Thank goodness for businesses and their creativity to keep us all sane!
This week, we got up to:
Joe Wicks PE lessons
I think every other family across the UK has been trying these out haven't they? On Monday we were all geared up and ready for Joe. I was pretty excited too! Unfortunately, after 10 minutes Jack and Erin were bored and wanted something else. Thankfully, at 9.30am Boogie Mites Newbury was going live online too...
Boogie Mites Newbury virtual classes Monday & Thursday 9.30am
Erin and I had been to one of Lizzie's Boogie Mites classes in Hungerford a few weeks ago. I felt quite excited when Lizzie said she was going virtual every Monday and Thursday at 9.30am! This was definitely a highlight of our Monday. Jack understandably lost interest after a while, but Erin stay engaged the whole way through. I left Erin to it and sat and completed a bit of school work with Jack. It was definitely a mummy win moment. Thank you Lizzie!
Jane's House Montessori virtual classes
There seems a bit of a pattern here with the virtual classes! Erin was meant to start Jane's House after Easter but with everything going on, she probably won't join until September now. To be honest I was getting mummy guilt about it anyway. At least I won't have any of that now! Jane kindly invited us to join her virtual morning classes for the children who attend the preschool. It was brilliant! It did made me question why schools weren't running lessons in a similar way. Would make a lot of sense. Hats off to Jane for branching out of her comfort zone to keep some kind of routine for her pupils!
Drawing patterns in sugar
This was inspired by the wonderful Jane in one of her virtual preschool sessions. I didn't have much sugar left, but figured it was one item I could go without. It would at least stop me having sugar in my coffee! Jack and Erin loved drawing shapes in the sugar for a good 30 minutes. It's something I've left out for them to play with as they keep going back to it. Genius idea!
'Fishing' in the garden
This was something I'd bought a little while ago in preparation for the Easter holidays - magnetic fishing rods and fish. The weather was so nice this week I couldn't resist bringing them out. I invested in a Tubb Tray last summer. It has hands down been the best thing I've bought. We use it a lot. The fishing set has now made it to the bath for the evenings!
When I heard about households painting rainbows so children could follow the trails, I knew we had to get involved. We live in a village with lots of children who go to Jack's school. Putting rainbows up has made the village seem a lot brighter - and closer. Jack and Erin love painting, so this was a good 30 minutes of entertainment!
Drawing with Rob Biddulph
Thursday didn't start that well for us. Jack and Erin were both grumpy and there was a lot of squabbling. A friend then shared the #DrawWithRob activity and Jack fancied giving it a go. Two hours later he was still drawing! I admit he wasn't drawing all of Rob's characters, he later found other drawing instruction videos on YouTube. But it's nice to have found an activity Jack gets a lot of enjoyment from. Thank you friend - you know who you are!
Lots of trampoline action
This trampoline comes with a story. Pete was given it for his 36th birthday. Yes, Pete. The full story is for another day! Anyway, the trampoline was so big (12ft in fact) I refused to have it in the garden. It takes up most of the space and doesn't look very pretty. It's been sat in the garage for the past year. However, when we heard about the lock down I literally begged Pete to put it up. He didn't have to be asked twice! It looks like a spaceship has landed, but it's been the highlight of the Ruggies' week.
This was courtesy of Nanny. She had some in her pond, so thought it would be nice for Jack to have his own frog spawn over the next few weeks to watch grow into tadpoles and then frogs. At least I can tick this off as a science experiment! When the frogs have grown we'll release them into The Chase so they can find a nice new home. Thank you Nanny!
Resources I've used that have worked for us
A couple of resources that have really stood out for us as a family this week are...
David Walliams FREE audible story
Jack has just got into audio books. I downloaded Audible but it's hard to find the free books they're releasing for children. However, David Walliams has come to our rescue. He's releasing an audio story every day at 11am with a virtual story time. Jack's listened to two at bedtime so far this week. He's really enjoying them!
I mentioned this earlier. This has been the highlight of our week. Jack REALLY enjoyed joining in with Rob to draw some of his well-known story characters. Since discovering these videos, Jack has asked every day to draw. It's so nice when you find something your child enjoys!
Finally, thank you to all the NHS and key workers!
Finally, I want to say a big huge thank you of appreciation to everyone working in the NHS and all the other key workers who are still going for us. I don't know how they do it. I know I couldn't. They're literally putting themselves on the front line to deal with all of this.
A big shout out to my Mum and Dad too who are volunteering and delivering prescriptions to people in the village. Proud of you.
We took part in cheering for the NHS at 8pm on Thursday 26 March. Lots of people came to their front doors. Very overwhelming!
Here's to another week....
Stay safe everyone. Much love, Abbie x