April 11, 2020

Forgot to write yesterday.  I have had a couple of exciting days.  I was able to drive the car to a store to pick up an order.  I never got out of the car yesterday.  Today, I took things to the storage unit and looked for my Easter table setting items.  Just because we have to stay home, doesn’t mean we have to go without anything pretty on the table.

We learned yesterday that we are going to be starting voluntary learning on Monday.  Each teacher has to plan 2 hours’ worth of work for a week.  The students may choose to do the work or not.  Each subject has an assigned day to post.  My assigned day is Tuesday.  I will work on my material tomorrow.


A long day.

Today was a stressful day with online learning.  DD#2 woke up this morning to a few emails adding work to what was due at 11:59pm.  To complicate the problem, even more, she had to work from 3-10 pm.  Needless to say, nothing went right today, she struggled to get things done to her expectations.  This not being able to get help from her professors could become a problem.  Hopefully, tomorrow will be a better day than today.

On the piano front, I found my old lesson books and did practice the first several songs and finger exercises.  I am looking forward to seeing where this goes and if I can actually improve from where I was.


Learning the Piano

As a young girl, I wanted to learn to play the piano.  I begged my parents to take piano lessons.  Finally, the summer before my 4th-grade year, they found a piano teacher who lived about a mile from my house.  I was so excited to finally be able to learn.  At first, it didn’t bother me that I had to walk or ride my bike to my lesson.  I tried really hard to practice also, but sadly that wasn’t going to work the best.  You see, we had an old piano that came with the house when my parents bought the house.  The ivory on the keys was missing, the piano was extremely out of tune, but the worst part was that middle C stuck.  So every time I would practice I would have to stop and release the middle C key before I could play another note.  This made it extremely hard to practice and I didn’t progress as much as I would have liked. When possible I would go to my grandmother’s house to practice the piano.  My grandmother was a really good pianist, she played piano at church.  My dad played when he was younger and I even have the record that he made when he was probably around 10-12 years of age.  Some of those piano playing genes had to have been passed down right?

At the beginning of my 5th-grade year, I didn’t get to start piano lessons right away.  My teacher was sick and didn’t start teaching again until halfway through the year. And then it was time to pick an instrument for the band and my parents gave me the choice to continue the piano or join the band.  Playing an instrument that worked was much easier so I gave up the piano to join the band.  Even though I stopped learning piano, that desire never went away.  There has always been a little light that has kept me wishing I could play the piano.  So much so, that I made sure to give both of my daughters piano lessons when they were younger.  Sadly, the didn’t take to the instrument that well (something about not wanting to practice). Kristen tried 3 different times to learn the piano and actually wasn’t doing that bad after the second try, but then she was busy with things at school and no longer had the time.  I was really sad to see her give up the piano.

Fast forward several years and Kristen is now a sophomore in college.  She has to take a piano proficiency test in order to graduate and she is struggling to learn the piano.  I think she has a piano professor that is just working with her personality. After struggling to get her to practice the past 3 weeks, I came up with a great idea.  Yes, we pulled out my old lesson books and I am going to start working on the piano.  She thinks that this will be fun and help her to want to practice again if she sees me practicing.  I have promised to spend 30 minutes a day practicing at least until we go back to school and then again in the summer.

Hopefully, I will progress and get to the point where I can play some easier pieces.

Day 21 of quarantine.




It has been 3 weeks since we were last allowed into the school.  I can’t believe how much I miss going to school, seeing my students and teaching them to love reading and writing.  I thought a week and a half off was bad last year due to the polar vortex, but at that point, we were at least allowed into the building.  If I ever complain about needing some time off or a break again, please someone slap me.


Need a change

It looks like things might be changing soon.  Iowa is now going to allow online learning and I have a feeling that we will be doing something.  We were notified today that there will be a Zoom meeting on Thursday with more information.  I really hope we are going to begin teaching online.  I need something to do and a reason to sleep/get up.  Unable to sleep most nights (I think it is because I am not getting out and doing anything, need to try walking or something, but the weather has not been the best since this all started).

Normally, I am up around 6:00 am even on days when I can sleep in, however, the past few days, I have been sleeping in and today didn’t get up 8:00 am and it was after 10:00 before I finally was dressed and eating breakfast.  Needless to say, I don’t get anything done on those days and feel so unproductive.  I am tired of feeling so unproductive.  At least I know that I will need to make sure I have a reason to get up and go when I am retired.  Hopefully, we won’t be quarantined during that time.


Today is Palm Sunday.  Normally our church has a pancake breakfast between the services.  The youth group traditionally puts this on as a fundraiser.  In honor of this tradition, we decided to have pancakes for brunch today.  I made pancakes with bacon and sausage along with two types of syrups.  I am really enjoying having the fruit syrups.  It was fun to see the number of people from the church that posted about having pancakes today for one of their meals.  I guess now, more than ever, traditions are important.  Traditions keep us grounded and going.  What traditions can I keep going during this interesting Holy Week?

Randomness from today

Trying to keep this blog positive, but I also want to record what is happening right now and how we are doing.  There might be some negative items today.

  1. Both girls had to work tonight, Kurt and I are home by ourselves.
  2. We decided to order for Olde Town Cafe for supper since it is just the two of us.  Very delicious, we haven’t eaten there for a long time.
  3. Our new neighbors decided to have a party again for the 2nd time this week.  Lots of cars in the street, they are not socially distancing themselves.
  4. I was able to get 6 pages scrapbooked and another 6 almost done today.  Completed the April challenges for ScrappiestDisneySwapping Facebook group.
  5. I placed my grocery order on Wednesday, I was supposed to pick it up at 6:00 today and as of now 7:30 it is still not ready.  They close in 30 minutes, I have a feeling that I am not getting groceries today ( received notification at 7:50 that my order was ready.  Was able to get there in time to pick up my groceries.)
  6. I can’t believe that even though sports are canceled, my husband is still able to watch all kinds of sports.  Have to Love (hate) all of these channels showing old games.
  7. I wish that I would actually be consulted about what we are watching.  Why do some people seem to think that what they want to watch is always so much more important than other’s feelings?
  8. I checked NO substitutions for a reason on my grocery order.  Many of the items I wanted are out of stock so they substituted different brands or flavors.  Please explain how changing Sweet Italian sausage to Cheddar Jalapeno sausage is even remotely close?  No one will eat the Jalapeno sausage in my family.
  9. I am getting really tired of being stuck at home.  When the highlight of my day/week is driving to the store, talking through a window and waiting while my order gets put into the trunk and then driving home again before getting out of the care, you know that the weeks are getting longer and I am getting bored.
  10. Really looking forward to when this is all over and I can get out and see others again.

3 weeks done, random thinking

Surprisingly we have survived 3 weeks of social distancing.  What I have learned so far is that it is important to still get up at a normal time, get dressed and have some goals for the day.  If I don’t have things planned for the day, nothing gets done.  Every day I am trying to get some cleaning, some reading, some learning, and some time for me.  This isn’t always working, but it is the goal.  Since tomorrow is Saturday, I will try to treat it as a normal Saturday.  That means more creating time for me in my craft room.  Hoping to get some April scrapbook challenges done. Maybe also create a few things for Easter, just a few fun spring paper crafts to decorate the table.  I will do my best to make this as normal of an Easter as possible.  The girls have decided that Hot fudge with ice cream and brownies sounds like a good dessert for the night, so they are working on making the hot fudge.  It sounds like a good chocolate dessert for the night.  After that a little facial bonding with both of my daughters.

Break extended

I really don’t have much to say today.  Trying to find the positive, but it has been a hard day.  My daughter is struggling with some things and trying to encourage her is getting hard and then there came the announcement that school will be closed until at least April 30th.

With that news today, I lost the desire to do much.  It doesn’t help that even though I placed my grocery order, the earliest I can get the order is Saturday evening.  I really need something good right now.

April 1

Even though the Slice of Life is over for this year, I am going to try and continue to write every day.  I have assigned my students to write throughout this time period and if I want them to do something, then I should be able to do it also. Normally I order Walmart online and then just pick up, it saves having to stand in line forever (I refuse to use the self-checkout) and I have found it much easier.  Normally, I am able to place my order in the morning and pick it up on my way home from school that day.  Not anymore.  Now, I have to wait until the next day. Not a big deal, just a change I have noticed.

A year ago, on a whim, I signed up for a FabFitFun box.  I was pleasantly surprised by the box and have continued to get it.  In the past, I wasn’t good at using up all of the beauty products. I did give some to my daughters that I thought they might want and use.  A box came on Tuesday since Kristen was home, she was with me when I opened the box  Lots of fun products were in this box and she decided that we needed to try the face cleansing stuff and face mask stuff.  So now, every night we are enjoying some bonding time as we rotate between the different facial cleansing items; masks, peels, clay masks, etc.  A little extra bonding with my college daughter is always a good thing.  We will make sure to include Sarah when she finally has a night off. Once again looking for something good to come out of COVID-19.  A little extra bonding time is a good thing.