How I’m Keeping Sane

Ok, so in all honesty I’m not sure my husband would agree to the above title as let’s face it; the world has gone to crap, so it’s ok to be emotional once in a while. One minute I’m perfectly happy and the next I feel like a caged, frightened animal. It’s definitely made me appreciate freedom and how I’ve taken it for granted:

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I want to pre-empt this with the fact that I am extremely lucky and grateful in that I (currently) still have a job and can work from home. I also have kids (to keep me occupied and amused) and a garden which I am so appreciative of right now.

I personally have been isolating/social distancing since the 16th of March as both my youngest and I had a nasty cough and breathlessness (I don’t think it was Covid–19).

These are the things that have really helped me so far:

1. Contact with friends

(Obviously virtually). I personally have been using all the usual suspects to keep in touch, I do think it helps to see, as well as hear familiar and much-loved faces.

2. Keeping a routine..

..to mentally separate the week from the weekend. (Obviously it helps that I have kids who have school–work and I am working from home.)

3. Making a plan..

…of things I’d like to do if work drys-up and/or I get bored, such as:

a) Take up Italian again
b) Learn how to double–skip
c) Read more (any recs, let me know)
d) Have a clear-out
e) Clean our windows
f) Get my kids to teach me how to code

….and that’s just the beginning!

4. Putting my makeup on every morning.

I know this seems shallow but this has really helped; as has putting on fake-tan every now and again. Current and old faves are; By Terry Touche Veloutee concealer, Benefit’s Hoola, Nars Brow Perfector, Clarins Lipliner (in nude fair) and Daniel Sandler’s Watercolour Liquid Blush:

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5. Sitting in the sun..

..(when it comes out), even if it just means finding a window with the most sunlight coming in.

6. Offering to help other people.

7. Wearing some favourite pieces of jewellery.

I have to admit that I have been mostly wearing workout gear so far, as it gives me an extra incentive to exercise but a nice bit of jewellery is easy to take off and makes me feel ‘put together’.

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I bought this single opal earring (by Otiumberg) at a recent trip to Soho Farmhouse with friends so it’s extra special as it was my last ‘outing’ filled with joy, freedom and laughter.

I’m really into hoops at the moment (pearl by Shashi, ‘coral’ by Kenneth J Lane (sold out) and plain gold by Missoma):

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8. Exercise.

This is a biggie for me. I have always been a massive advocate for exercise; not only as a tool for fitness, strength and general health but for the mind as well. It really couldn’t be more important right now. I’ve been doing yoga everyday and some sort of cardio. It helps that my gym have started doing live Zoom classes (here) but there are plenty of online resources out there.

9. Not to read too much news

It helps to turn off your news notifications. Pick a couple of news channels that you trust and try and stick to those. Do not read any news before bed.

10. Cooking, baking and food planning.

If you can’t cook, this is a great opportunity to learn. It’s important to keep your spirits, nutrition and energy levels up at this time plus it gives you a sense of achievement.

We’re a family of four with two growing boys so we get through a large quantity of food. Now I have more time I’ve had to stretch the food out in order that it lasts (otherwise we’d have to go shopping every two days!). We’ve been buying larger cuts of meat in order that we can make 3 meals out of them; it’s cheaper and there’s zero waste.

Baking has always been a comfort for me; the smells coming from a hot oven, as well as seeing the excitement on my sons’ faces makes it all the more worthwhile. So far I’ve made my lemon & blueberry cake (double the quantity of this recipe) and I’ve adapted my already really tasty banana cake to include dark chocolate chips (I’ll put the adapted version on the blog):

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I’ve also found some mincemeat (the sweet kind!) in my cupboard so I’m going to attempt a mincemeat and apple tart.

11. Using the ability to be mentally transported..

..whether it be by looking at photos, reading a good book, listening to music, tasting something nostalgic or simply by a fragrance.

12. Wishlist shopping

A lot of this is on my Pinterest account:

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How are you coping?

I might try and do some more in-depth posts on the points above such as more recipes, meal diary/planning, the power of makeup/products, loungewear etc. Any ideas; let me know. (This blog is not sponsored in anyway; I just enjoy writing it and it gives me a creative outlet.)

Before the lockdown I went back to Oxford with some dear friends so I might do a post about that too.

Best wishes and good health to you all.

X

 

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