Corona Virus Quarantine Day #27: Monday, Monday.

Corona Virus Quarantine Day #27: April 13, 2020

Today my guest writer is our sweet, smart, and beautiful 9-year-old daughter Ellen.

Today we did school first.  My favorite part was our specialty project.  I am doing the state of Arizona.  When we finish them we will present them to our family and hopefully one day go visit these places we researched.  Then we did family yoga, I liked it, it wasn’t too hard today.

After lunch we went to the barn.  I played volleyball with mommy and did Fletcher’s obstacle courses.  His “obstables” were fun, they also weren’t that hard.  But he liked being the teacher and being in charge.  He even told us good job, that part was funny.  After that we played kick ball.  Cooper and I were teammates against Finley and Fiona.  My team won.  It was fun. Mommy played too!  We were down at the barn for a long time.

This cracked me up…Ellen started practicing her serve and Fiona wanted to jump right in and do the same.  “Mommy, can you make sure I am going it right?”  I love the initiative…and quite frankly like being able to coach someone.  


Let’s call Fletchers “obstable” course…special. He was so proud of himself being the teacher.  It was pretty sweet to watch.  Mommy was required to participate, in fact I had to go first in every “obstable”.  If I was a complainer…which I try not to be,  I would have complained about the number of times I had to run around the gym!

After that I played outside with Cooper and Gi Gi for awhile.  Gi Gi is super cute and I like her, I just don’t like when she bites me.  Then we came in the house and wrote letters.  I made some bracelets for the people I wrote letters to.  I love getting letters in the mail.  It’s so fun.

Then we prayed the rosary for one of mom’s friends who has corona virus.  It makes me sad that someone has this virus and is so sick.  Praying for people helps, so it was fun.  After that we ate dinner.  I have been working on mom’s birthday present for awhile now because her birthday is tomorrow.  I can’t tell you what it is because I want her to be surprised.

I had a good day today.  I think the corona virus is good in a way because it allows me to spend so much time with my family.  My favorite thing to do during quarantine is to play in the barn or to play outside with my siblings and parents.  I also do not like the corona virus because I can’t see my friends, go to school or go places and it makes people sick.  Today I am thankful for my family, Gi Gi, Zoey, Cutie Pie, our house, food, water, and the barn.

Love, Ellen

Mommy’s thoughts:

In some ways it’s hard to believe we are on day #27 and other times it feels like we are on day 270.

I don’t know about you…but I am a planner. Like a type A planner.  I want to know what is next, and I like to have a very organized itinerary if possible to whatever is in fact planned.

The corona virus has rocked my world in that way.  I can’t plan ahead.  I don’t know what’s next.  In a way that’s been weirdly comforting, because what is next is more schooling my own children, teaching remotely my own students, lots of cooking and extra time playing sports with the kids in our own back yard.  In other ways it’s been hugely depressing, because, you know…I can’t plan.  Like some of you, I’d guess, the not knowing when this is over piece is a struggle.

I don’t know if I’m just tired today or what but it’s been on my mind like crazy even though the kids and I had a great day.

We did our school stuff, did yoga together, wrote letters to family and friends and played in the barn for hours…it was wonderful.  We even prayed a rosary together for a friend’s family who has the corona virus.  These are all things we would have been pressed for time to do in “normal” times.  It would have felt like another thing to do or made me feel like I was neglecting 10 other things I should have been doing to spend all that time playing sports in the barn.

So in many ways the corona virus has mandated we all slow down and reflect on what is really important, like our families.  Nurturing my relationship with our kids and with my husband is the most important and valuable thing I can do in my life.  GOD has given me extra time to do that right now and I’m grateful.

So why the anxiety and stress?  I guess, because I’m a planner.  I can’t plan.  It’s killing me.

I can plan homeschool lessons and ways to engage my students online and meals…but. That. Is.  It.  I don’t know the next time I will see my students in the flesh. I don’t know if the plans we have for the summer will actually happen. I don’t know if I will get to run my own summer camps, one of my favorite things I get to do in coaching.  I don’t know the next time I will step foot in a gym to work with an athlete that isn’t my 9 or 8 or 5 year old child.  Can I get a collective sigh from all you planners out there?

The uncertainty of all of this has been difficult for me.  I am trying to take it one day at a time and be positive about each and every minute I get to spend with my family that I wouldn’t have gotten outside of this.  And grateful I am!

But man, the planner in me just wants to make some damn plans!  I want to plan to see my family, I want to plan to see my friends, I want to plan to see my students and players, I want to plan our summer and to be honest…I want to plan a vacation.

Folks, these are high class problems during a pandemic.  I’m aware.  Bryan and I were actually talking tonight about the “when this will be over” dynamic of all of this and how crazy this exact feeling had to be during times of war.  Seriously think about it.  WWII for Americans started in December of 1941 and didn’t end until September of 1945.  That’s a long time to be unsure of the outcome.  That was a time when there wasn’t a single American families untouched by the war and its ugliness. Everyone knew someone who fought in the war and weren’t sure when or if they would come back.

I am a history teacher so I guess that’s why I have these weird thoughts, but today I was grateful we aren’t in that kind of war.  We are at war though.  With a faceless enemy.  One that can kill people we love.  One that is affecting us all, albeit in a different way.  This war has shut down our country and economy, it makes us stay home and spend time with our families…so a lot less insane than WWII.  But aside from that fact it is still scary and uncertain.  And today I gave myself the grace to feel both of those things.

But, like Americans did in WWII I am hopeful that Americans today are putting their selfish desires aside and doing what is best for our nation.  In doing that, we know that there is an end in sight…even if we can’t see it right this minute.

Tomorrow I will go back to taking it all in stride, one day at a time.  But I figured some of you must be feeling the way I’m feeling and I wanted you to know you aren’t alone.

To all the planners out there…I’m right there with you.  But, I do believe, that we will be planning once again.  Soon!  For now, we just need to plan our day, what we will do, what we will cook, how we will spend any free time we have and be satisfied with that!

A few highlights from the day…


Another “obstable” course Fletcher set up for himself while the others finished their school work.  He was done for the day!


The intense kick ball game. I know this will come as a surprise to those of you that know us…but our kids are competitive.  Yikes!


I love  praying the rosary.  I have a very strong belief that praying through Mary is a powerful piece of business.  Those of you who know my story know why.  Mary is my girl.  Fletcher always chooses my volleyball rosary (which a young student named Kim Peterson…now Kim Feist, gave me when I had her in class).  I have always kept that rosary and it’s one of my favorite ones to pray with so it’s awesome that he chooses it every time.  It’s my favorite not because it has volleyballs on it, but because it was a thoughtful gift from a sweet girl (now adult with a child the same age as Fletcher…craziness) and I will treasure it always.


You guys, have to celebrate this momentous occasion.  If I ask this child to write his name 5 times he throws a hissy fit, but tonight he asked me to write a letter to his friend “Jack”.  Jack is in 6th grade, his twin brothers are in the triplets class…Fletcher loves him some Jack Carpenter.  He even wrote that in his letter.  Their “friendship” is evidence that when you are nice to people they know it…and they appreciate it and then are drawn to you (even 5 year old boys…it’s why we should always be kind because we never know what kind of impact we may have on someone else). Jack has always been nice to Fletcher and as a result, Fletchy is a huge fan.  He wrote him the entire note, in his own handwriting. So that should make Jack feel pretty special.  I now know what I have to do to get this boy to practice writing!  So a huge thank you to Jack!


Finally, I am grateful to my dad for his love of music. It is something he has absolutely passed on to his daughters and now we share it with our own kids.  Joe Bell exposed us to all different types of music and he himself even sang in a band.  Fletcher loves music more than maybe anyone else (Fiona would be a close 2nd).  Even as a small baby he would bounce in his car seat when he heard a good beat.  This child challenges me on the daily but holy moly he also makes all of us smile and laugh and love.  I heard “Final Countdown” at least 12 times today and I don’t even care because when he sings it and his siblings sing along I just melt!

Stay well my friends, stay well and stay positive.  We got this.  I just know it.



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