A Year Tomorrow

Tomorrow marks a year since my life has changed due to Covid.  In many ways it was a sad year…in many ways, it was a good year.  I think I’m more of a glass-half-full girl so while many have bemoaned the terribleness of staying home more, I really haven’t.  I’ve always been a homebody girl.

Here are some of the things I’ve really enjoyed in the last year.

Going to the doctor is so different
-Limited wait times in the waiting room
-I can communicate and be served better by the doctor through messages.  Several times I was able to communicate with my doctor using the message service thus was prevented from having to go in and be seen.  I’ve so appreciated this.  I really hope it can continue.

Family Face Time
-Facing timing with five kids at once with kids running around in the background is a little bit of a joke but being we aren’t together as often, we’ve started a tradition of doing this a little more.
-We started a new tradition of getting together on birthdays and singing to the person with the birthday.  I hope that continues.

Pick up

-I love grocery pickup.  I have saved so much time doing grocery pickup.
-On the reverse, I love going to the grocery store now when I do go.  It seems like a whole new world opens up when I go.  There are so many options that I didn’t see as options before.  Going to get groceries isn’t quite the chore it was.

Staying Home When Sick
-I know some people hate that we are all encouraged to stay home when we are sick.  I love it.  Think of how much less spreading of colds and such are happening now.  My childcare parents used to bring kids to childcare that obviously needed to stay home.  Now their workplaces are more flexible and understanding and let parents stay home with their child.  I’m sad that things haven’t always been like that…I hope workplaces can stay that way.  I think it’s so good for everyone.

-So many times the best medicine for any cold or illness is rest.  I think people are doing more of that…and that’s good.

Prioritizing and Appreciating
-I think everyone has learned a little more about what is truly important to them.  When you can’t go to the movie theatre, do you find you miss it?  When you can’t meet for regular quilt guild meetings, do you miss it?  When you don’t see your grandchildren as much when you do, is it so much sweeter?

I think all of us have seen that living without some things has made us happier.  I think we’ve all seen that living without some things has made us sadder.  In the hustle of it all before, I think we didn’t take the time to really look and examine, to ask ourselves, do I really love being part of this group?  Do I really miss it?

I think there is going to be a shift in things…I think more people are going to stop doing some things they find they didn’t miss, but also I think some people might join things they previously didn’t do.  I’m sure some people have had more time to quilt and now would like to join a quilt guild.

-I think a new appreciation of nature has happened.  I know Karl is someone who does not like staying home.  He has hiked and gotten outdoors more than ever…even winter hiking and night hiking.

I know me, I look at walking Rosie as “getting out”.

I know other families like Kalissa’s family and went crazy about biking.  They even got me out on my bike riding a trail.

When Craig and Kalissa went to upgrade their bikes, they had a really hard time finding bikes.  So many people were buying them.  The same holds true for the outdoor pool they bought.  They had trouble finding one as so many people were buying them up. When people were confined, they hit the great outdoors.  I hope that tradition continues.  A good healthy appreciation of nature is good for us all.

Along the same line, I think people picked up more hobbies.

Me, I think I got in more cross stitch time over the last year because of the pandemic.  I think it’s been a great year for cross stitch suppliers and designers.  People were home so they stitched more than ever.

I know many more people were gardening.  They had more time to do it and suddenly through shortages, came to not take food in the grocery store quite so much for granted.  That’s a good thing.

Business Changes
I think the change over the last year has been great for many of us in a way we don’t often realize that came about because of Covid.  Being Bonnie Hunter isn’t out teaching, she’s been producing more patterns and we’ve been able to get them quicker rather than wait for a new book.  Lori Holt used to be out on the road teaching too.  Instead, she is offering regular videos on Youtube that we all can enjoy.  I’m curious, once there’s a change if these creators will keep up the new format or go back to the old of teaching and being on the road.  Me, I love this.  I feel like more of us have access to their talents.

I know there has been bad.  I know some families are suffering.  I know people have lost jobs.  I know some jobs may never come back.  I know the stress on some people like nurses will be something they long carry.  I know many lost important people.  I wish that wasn’t so…I don’t want to downplay any of that for even a second.

But…I do think, if we look carefully, all of us can find something that actually changed for the better in the last year.  Remember…I’m a glass-half-full girl so it didn’t take much looking for me to find some good things.  How about you?  Did you like some of the changes that happened because of Covid?  I’d love for you to share a change that happened because of Covid that you found you could appreciate.  Please leave a comment in the comment section.

24 thoughts on “A Year Tomorrow”

  1. Christina Coats

    Hi Jo
    I totally agree with you in everything. The one thing I have done and never done before is follow a blog! YOURS. I’m so grateful to you for keeping my spirits up when low and enjoy seeing all the wonderful quilts and stitching . Thank you Jo, Vince nearly eating dog food had me giggling. A great way to start the day . Love to you and your family take care and stay safe. Xx

  2. Christina Coats

    Hi a job
    Forgive me being a little confused . But I stand by the fact you have made me smile and love your way you are with your family.

  3. It was just last month when I realized a prayer of mine and many others had been answered.
    In 1993 I had a 2nd reoccurence of brain cancer. Being 19 i was mad that my childhood was full of anxiety and at eleven had my first bout with a brain tumor and a reoccurence ten months later that was cancerous. All I wanted was to grow up and rid of my angst and discover me. Now I had a Dr. telling me I had 5 yrs to lIve!!! Man I was livid and stormed out of his office and yelled I’m not going to die as he told me the psychologist was waiting for me but I walked back to my parents car, fuming. It was my stepmother who,on the drive home, told me not to worry about it. That was the release button, or you can pass go permission I needed to hear. 27 years later the long terms side effects of cancer survivorship(yes more and more people are surviving longer opening up another field of medicine) and covid quarantine has me realizing how fortunate I am to be alive & well and those prayers made long ago were heard and answered then and the realization delivered to me two weeks ago as I journaled. Thank God for Covid…who knew it is to be a blessing in disguise!?

  4. Pamela Roberts

    Hi Jo
    Much as I try to be positive this year has been very trying. The first Lockdown started on our wedding anniversary and this last Lockdown seems to be dragging on for ever. I saw my daughter once last year when we had a socially distant coffee in a coffee shop in London and haven’t been able to see her since. I watched my grand children open their Christmas presents via FaceTime and Christmas lunch we ate with the IPad propped up on the table watching them eat their lunch also via FaceTime. The only other adult I see is the delivery man who drops the groceries that I have ordered on line at the front door. I never thought that I would miss grocery shopping!
    On the positive side I have the company of my dear husband of 55 years and my sewing machine
    . We are both in good health although looking a little shaggy about the hair. I do have my bad days but am thankful to have had the first vaccine and are only a week or so away from getting the second one.
    I write this not to cast an air of gloom over everyone but really to let you know the difference between Lockdown in your part of the world and Lockdown in a London suburb.
    There is light at the end of the tunnel as things are gradually easing . I have promised myself that as soon as we are allowed we will walk up the road to the local pub and sit outside to have a drink even if we have to do it wearing coats and scarves.

    1. I’ve heard from RA friends (on a support site) in London and thereabouts how much stricter things are. In the US, it varies greatly by state. I’ve also not seen my son in over a year except via FaceTime, and am eager to hug him soon. So I can relate to that. I’m sorry for the loss of so much you’ve been feeling. ❤️

      For me, because of my illness, there hasn’t been much change in my day to day life (other than missing my kids). When I got sick, that when I went through all the loss, thus it has been easier on me. I hope that soon, you’re enjoying a pub date with friends again.

    2. Pam you are so right that the lockdown in London was much different than the “recommendation” that the state of Iowa gave.

  5. I’m in ireland and I agree with pamela Roberts. We are only allowed d travel 5km from our home unless its farming, health apt, education or work related. The only quilt shop is more than 5km. Bummer. Can’t travel up the country to visit my son and he can’t get home. Bummer.
    Our hair salons and beauticians are closed so we’re all looking shaggy.
    But I agree with a lot of your comments, there lots I don’t miss at all and don’t care if I ever get to do them again

  6. We enjoy being home more. We were always busy with something. I tried new recipes and we enjoy eating at home now more than at our favorite restaurants. We decided to not be around Stupid people and blocked them on FB. We rest more now, much more. No hurrying around each morning getting ready to go somewhere. We bought a new house that is an upgrade, decided we deserve it. Covid made me more militant, protecting myself and my husband and even my pets from people who won’t wear masks. I had Covid and ended up in a New Orleans hospital with pneumonia while on vacation in our RV on my wedding anniversary. I now have serious side effects I will have to live with but Live is the major word here. Each day I now pray for people who have no jobs, no food, no money and have had friends and family die from Covid. Our world has changed and while I’m very sad for people whose lives have gone downhill, my life is better now. My priorities have changed with Covid and I look forward to a better future for hubby and I.

  7. One big positive for me is Working from home. Instead of driving an hour back and forth every weekday, i am able to walk to my living room “office”. I ride my bike to the gym every morning and still get to work on time! Also another big plus is I get out of work and can walk over to my sewing machine, I’ve gotten lots of sewing done! While there have been tough things to deal with , I like to concentrate on the positives.

  8. One of the best things that has happened through covid-19 is that our church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, now allows us to zoom-meet-up for baptisms, and other priesthood ordinances, as well as hybrid church meetings, some in the chapel on camera zooming to those staying home. Our son and his family moved from 2,000miles away to 13miles away from us during lockdown. Following church regulations, we grandparents could not physically attend that granddaughter’s baptism at age 8, being outside the immediate family, even though it took place in our own chapel. But then Zoom began, and we got to zoom in to her baptism, along with friends and family who were now 2,000miles away. It was fantastic! We could give talks and prayers and chat with them afterwards, all of us joining in to one small 7 member meeting!! We really hope that this zoom-style meeting will continue, because our church is worldwide and it would be so great to “attend” other group meetings in this way.

  9. I, too, am a homebody so I liked not having to have an excuse to leave my house. We are blessed and had everything we needed. I did a couple very early morning grocery shopping trips, and since my local family had been together at the time of the lockdown, we continued having family dinners on Sundays – we could do this knowing none of us went out and about with strangers. I was able to finish several quilts too. The thing I missed most was an occasional meal at a restaurant. I read this blog and a couple others, so I felt I was “seeing” friends.

  10. The staying home when sick has really made a difference in our local schools. Our district has done a great job with schooling during the pandemic. Every child is accessed when they arrive at school. Any child not in good health is sent home. Our 8 year old grandson hasn’t missed a day of school because of illness this year, he hasn’t brought home any germs to share with his family either. Also ‘snow days’ are a thing of the past now, you do online school the days school is cancelled because of weather. I know there is a big difference between smaller rural school and large city schools but I’ve been very thankful for the dedication of our school system this past year.

  11. Thank-you Jo!
    I find it’s always a good idea to count my blessings! I had envied friends who were retired for several years, but thought I had to wait. Then covid hit and interest rates went very low and we refinanced our home mortgage at less than half the rate as the previous mortgage.
    I retired! Yay! I sew almost every day and am clearing up the list of started quilts. The exhaustion is slowly lifting. I don’t have to be out interacting with the public 5 days a week. I get grocieries, go to medical appointments and go to church.
    I know people who have lost loved ones. I’ve not seen my grandson in 6 months, ( we had gone for a 15 minute walk that time). One daughter lives with us, one I’ve not seen since last July and the oldest I’ve not seen since September. Covid has cost this nation dearly. I have been blessed to have my children well.

    As always you’ve given a well balanced look at this chaotic year. Stay well!



  12. Marlene Clausen

    My favorite quote of the pandemic came early in the year by a quilter in one of the FaceBook groups to which I belong. “We have to stay at home!? I’m all like, I’m a quilter. I’ve been in training for this my whole life.”

  13. You said it well, this past year has been trying and yet I’m also a glass half full kind of person. Two of my dear friends have died due to Covid, both under 60. That truly did suck and no funerals to celebrate there lives made it worse. I do appreciate picking up groceries, being at home and not feeling bad because we don’t participate in some of our previous activities. We have learned to cook together and to try new menu items. We have been grateful for our good neighbors, our health and that of our children. Yes our glass is more full than empty.

  14. I agree with you! We weren’t big social people before and so the not going out with friends was no big deal. Not getting together with family did bother me, but when summer hit, we could be outside. I have not personally done a grocery pickup, my daughter did that for us for a bit. It’s kind of Ike ordering fabric online…..I like to see and feel what I am buying! I think it have forced families to do things together and that is good! I hope that does not change!

  15. Covid stinks!! It took my “day job” and forced me to focus on my quilting. SEW LOVE that my quilting time went thru the roof!! The ONLY thing I’ve missed (besides feeling safe around people when

    outside my home) is being able to eat out, if we wanted to do so. I still visited with friends, while socially distanced and outdoors. My Quilt Bee and Knit Group still met weekly (although, via Zoom.) Well, I also miss Show and Tell at Quilt Guild meetings! We’ve been meeting online since late summer, but it’s too much work for the organizers to manage that aspect online.

  16. Gayle Shumaker

    For me I spent that year dealing with indescribable back pain then finally back surgery in the fall. Blogs from you, Mary, Bonnie and others were my lifeline for “socializing “ and contact with the outside world. I think you are right on with what many will take away from the past year.

  17. A few things quickly come to mind. One is this past year has allowed me time to complete my thoughts. I’ve been able to think on past events, some from my childhood, and come to a “conclusion” concerning them and find peace in some of the situations. Another is I don’t miss a lot of the meetings I went to. As a widow they were events to get me out of the house but not emotionally or spiritually uplifting. I have even less patience with thoughtless comments from people that are always right no matter the topic that seem to run these meetings. And I came to realize how much time I spent preparing for these meetings! Thoughts such as: Is it my turn to bring food? What am I wearing in regards to how hot/cold the room will be? Do I have my name tag? Answering emails/texts from others attending wanting to know if I’m attending. That mental/physical time has been mine.

    Hindsight is always 20/20. I should of traveled in June 2020 to see my 88 year old mother and my 3 grandbabies when Covid-19 was at a low. Both live in different states south of me, 2 flights. I went in Oct. to see my mom on her 89th birthday and flew further south to spent a week with the grands. I did it again in December for Christmas. I will not allow media driven fear to prevent me from this trip again.

    I miss eating out but restaurants have opened in my town for the most part. I’m disappointed I didn’t sew more the past year but haven’t been motivated to do so and that’s life. I’m not going to beat myself up about it. I work alone and my office is not in my home so I got to see 4 “different” walls each day.

    Our local schools have been open all year and for that I’m very thankful!

  18. Susan the Farm Quilter

    It has been a year of losses – 10 family members and friends have died, none from COVID, my beloved horse died, couldn’t work at all last year, and lost part of my colon to diverticulitis. I have been away from hubby and home for 5 years now, since I was caring for my father who died March 18 last year. So I’ve been alone, except for my dog, the whole year…other than medical appointments, lawyers and my CPA! Blogs have been my socialization this year and I haven’t sewn anything in a year. I am usually a positive person, but the last year has really been difficult. I have reconnected with an old friend and that has been a blessing. God sends the people I need when I need them and that is exactly the message I need to remember!

  19. My kind of odd “positive” is that my youngest has had his freshman year in college from home. He’s on the autism spectrum and I think it’s been a lot easier for him to transition to college when it’s all online and he can stay at home and not change much of his routine. The first semester, the entire school was online. For the second semester, students could choose and he chose to continue on virtually.

    I think that transitioning to college next year will be easier now that he has the hang of college courses a bit. Not easy, necessarily, but easier. That’s our silver lining.

    We have also been fortunate that my husband has been working from home for about 20 years; there was no change in his job or income. We were all able to stay home a lot and to be very careful when out. So far, so good. We are hoping to all get vaccinated by the end of April or so. We will continue to follow whatever rules there are, but it will be a relief to feel safer. :)

  20. I’m also a glass half-full person. We were (are) both recovering from foot surgery so we were required to stay off our feet. Covid put everyone inside, too, so we didn’t feel like we were missing out on much. It made it much easier to follow the rules and stay off our feet.

    I felt sorry for my granddaughter, who graduated from high school in the middle of Covid. No ceremony, no party, no pomp and circumstance. She knows she isn’t a good virtual learner, so she didn’t start college, either. It’s been hard for her to be that isolated.

    Curbside pickup is a godsend and I hope it continues. Grocery delivery was also life changing for us, even before Covid started.

    I missed my family, having lots of hugs, sharing holidays. Zoom is fantastic and I’ve gained a lot from it, both with family, and also with guilds, tours, and other meetings/classes.

    It will be interesting what things change and what stays the same.

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