You’ve had my take on working from home in a productive way. Now for a more light-hearted, less practical post.
Unless you’re a key worker (and if you are, then you’re incredible and deserve better), chances are you’ve found yourself with more time on your hands. Going out isn’t an option, so we’ve all had to create new routines while we stay put at home, in order to keep cabin fever at bay.
Here are nine things I’ve been doing during lockdown.
1. Cleaning and decluttering
Not just a light dusting of everything, oh no. My glass spray bottle has never seen so much action in such a short space of time. Everything I’d normally avoid (hi, skirting boards!) has been getting a thorough wipe-down every few days and the carpet has never looked fresher.
As for decluttering? I’ve broken it down area by area (chest of drawers, bedside table, under-bed storage, desk etc). By far the most satisfying declutter was the wardrobe, because for once I had time to try everything on and really think about how it made me feel. I’ve got a much better idea of the items I reach for day-to-day—lots of stripes and denim—and anything that I don’t feel confident in, or don’t fit into anymore, is going to my local charity shop once lockdown is over. I used the method in this YouTube video.
2. Burning candles every day
I was never able to use candles when I rented a room in a house share, so now I’m back living with my parents I’ve gone overboard to compensate for lost time. I’ve got lime and eucalyptus for daytime, lavender for before bed (both from Vegan Bunny Co.) and Holly Cassell’s Aphrodite candle for bathtime and any other time, really. It has a lovely rose and lemon scent and the illustration by Lace & Whimsy is gorgeous.
3. Binge-watching Tiger King
I have a degree in writing and yet I can’t find the words to adequately express how ludicrous this documentary series is.
4. Using up everything in the kitchen
As much as I miss a spontaneous supermarket trip, limiting food shops to once a week has been beneficial for my budget and in terms of food waste. I made lists of everything I had in stock (in the fridge, freezer, cupboards etc) and have been planning my meals around them. Not only has this forced me to be more creative when it comes to food, but I’ve managed to find some speedy recipes I can whip up mid-week when life goes back to normal. Highlights include a version of paella using Wicked Kitchen’s excellent vegan chorizo sausages, and baked sweetcorn and black bean enchiladas with easy tomato sauce* and a lime and cashew cream.
* veg stock, tomato puree, smoked paprika, cumin, mild chilli powder, garlic granules, onion granules and a pinch of salt. All you have to do is mix everything up in a jug.
5. Eating Easter eggs
Why does chocolate taste so much better in egg form? (Or rabbit form—I highly recommend Lindt’s dark chocolate bunny.)
6. Ignoring articles about how to stop snacking
Food brings me joy, damn it.
7. Disproving the theory your skin improves when you don’t wear make-up
I broke out all along my right cheek and jawline the first week social distancing was introduced and lack of make-up did nothing to heal it any faster. It’s mostly cleared up now, but my skin doesn’t look any better or worse now I’m only using brow gel and lip balm.
8. Embracing video calls
My friends and I have always been fairly good at staying in touch, but lockdown has forced us to take it up a notch, so the odd WhatsApp message has become regular video calls. It’s lovely being able to see them and hear their voices, and we’ve got each other’s backs if anyone is finding things difficult. I started off trying to look presentable for them, but I’m now comfortable enough to show up in a towel turban with spot cream dotted all over my face. They’re so lucky.
9. Squealing with glee every time I drive to the supermarket
I know I said I wanted to become a more confident driver, but I didn’t want a pandemic in order for that to happen.
I know I’m lucky to be able to do all these things, and maybe one day I’ll look back wistfully and remember when I had too much time on my hands. But I’m also looking forward to being able to go out again. These are surreal, scary times.
What are you doing during lockdown? Let me know in the comments.
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Beth, 26, South East England.
Lover of books, dogs, yoga, travelling, and gin. Always thinking about my next meal.
I write about ethical & eco-friendly living, minimalism, and mental health, as I muddle through one step at a time. Enjoy!