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Rachel Matthews

Since the world has become a quieter place, the birds are louder than ever. I’m trying to learn them by their songs, since I can’t spot them easily in the trees when I’m out for my morning walk. Some are easy to identify, some have so many different calls that it’s quite a challenge for me. I suppose this falls under “learn a new language “, but it’s different and I’m having fun. There are apps...


Well I have been through the blog a couple of times and I think the best option for me is #19

Doris Wolfe

Love your blog. Great ideas!
Bloom where you are planted comes to mind...with the beauty of spring surrounding us and the renewal of life in le jardin it’s a great time to be outside.


My friends and I Zoom three mornings a week in lieu of our former coffee visits in town. We have anywhere from 8 to 15 people on. It is good to see faces. I have become an exercise aficionado including walking thru my neighborhoods and downtown, something I never did before in 33 years of living here. I walk to the local lake to see all the birds and gaze across the water. I have become deeply involved in social media and love it and have met many wonderful people. I have baked more and eaten more but then I am exercising so..... I am not cleaning out anything - no desire..... yet, but find I am feeling very content and good overall. I am also caregiving for my husband but it has been good for me to be a better person.

Tom Berry

For the last two weeks, we have had a family video conference on Sunday afternoon. It replaced the Sunday dinners we used to have together but it’s fun reuniting family in Atlanta, Tampa and me in France. I’m also teaching a class online on French grammar and common expressions. It started because classmates where I was taking my French classes were having difficulty due to their lack of background in grammar. Since most of our instructors at the school don’t speak English, this created an opportunity for us to come together and ask the questions we need to ask in order to further our knowledge. Today I completed session 12 and it’s going well. We meet for 90 minutes and have a lot of fun together. Because you learn as you teach, I’m getting a lot out of it as well. It also keeps me busy during the week planning and organizing. Fortunately our confinement is due to end May 11. I’m looking forward to being able to get a haircut!

Vicky from Athens

A great list of things to do! I have been doing yard work and cleaning closets slowly. If I’d made good use of all this free time I’d be through with everything that needs to be done but alas, I have ADHD and spin my wheels, jumping from project to project without ever completing one. One thing I’ve been amusing myself with is relocating the squirrels that have overrun my yard! I use a Havahart trap and when I catch a squirrel it’s literally “over the river and through the woods” to your new home you go! I take it several miles away and release him/her into the woods. If you don’t take the squirrel several miles away to release, it’ll return to your yard. I’m fortunate to be able to put a river between us. I smile every time I hear the trap door slam shut and smile bigger when I open the door to release it.
I’m also continuing my art class on Zoom. It’s not nearly as good as being in the studio but it keeps me in touch with my art friends and it’s fun.
I look forward to hearing what your other readers are doing.


We are learning how to make sourdough bread! The challenge is finding the flour which tells me that a lot of people must be baking a lot! The best part of the process is the number of steps it takes which makes the day go faster -- on second thought -- the best part is the heavenly smell that permeates the house as it bakes!
I am also working on sewing projects that I never found time for prior to being self isolated. Thanks Lynn for your great ideas!

Anne Daigle

Pulling weeds in our South Louisiana yards. Since we had only one cold snap last November, the weeds are crazy. But Pulling them does 2 things--I can take out any aggressive feelings on them (Die! weed, die). After all Voltaire"s advice for impossible times was to "cultivate your garden". And 2- I do not have to do the hamstring stretches my doc had prescribed. Bending over for t he weeds takes care of that.


Hi Lynn,

Since baking ingredients are in short supply, I’ve started experimenting with different types of ice cream. We are near a lot of farms, so fresh eggs & dairy are not a problem. So far, I’ve made vanilla with guava paste swirls, blueberry and my latest, peanut butter & chocolate.


Debby Woods

Love your ideas. I am on a happy hour chat with my childhood friend in Texas. It really helps...the wine and chat!
Stay safe.

Frank Levin

With the virus we would be in Pays Basque right now. Instead we are home and for the first summer in 21 years we will be home all summer long. Thus my new adventure is watching things grow. Planing good things to eat or se is something I have always done, but they often grew in my travel-induced absence and sustained by my automatically run irrigation system. I would try to visualize what three weeks of growth would look like while I traveled and suffered garden envy all over France. I was always astonished by the amazing growth during the wonderfulness of summer. Now I visit each plant each day to see how it is growing. It sort of reminds me of marking my kids' height on the door frame. Right now my potatoes are growing about an inch over night and another inch during the day. Amazing. The tomatoes are coming out of the greenhouse windows and into the ground today. As seedlings they have been putting on1/8 inch a day. Once they hit the ground they will race ahead of the potatoes. The onions are a bit shy. They poked out ten days ago and are just starting to get the hang of getting big. Yesterday, between rains, I planted 100 gladioluses to make July bright. Enough. I need to go check on the basil.


Lynn,these are not only really good tips but helpful and timely,as well.Plus those beautiful pictures!!THANK YOU!!
The only thing I could add would be: establish a daily playtime ,(or two!or three or more!!)with your pet!!We can learn so much about joy from them,not to mention acceptance and making the most out of whatever we get stuck dealing with.Their unconditional love just wraps itself around our hearts!
I also like to read aloud to them--the online courses I take,or poetry or novels....they look at me with comprehension,and for some reason,there is something very soothing about hearing my own voice(rather than just in my mind)

Mary Sayas

I’m a Charlestonian also and live on James Island. I have a big place with an overgrown woodland garden, so with the help of a dear friend I’ve been pulling vines and clearing brush. The results are wonderful to see and the physical activity is a great stress reliever. It will be good to get back to normal though and be able to go out to dinner again, and gather with friends!

Mariella Neumann

Thanks for all your tips Lynn, I have 3 lady friends living alone so each morning we WhatsApp and check in to say that we are all ok.
I have started a movie club with 3 girl friends ( just like a book club) and each Friday we Zoom and discuss for an hour about the film we watched, some have been very good and some not so good .
My daughter who is living with us makes Michael & I do 3 things each day we have to tell her each morning ..It’s quite challenging as some days we just want to do nothing.
My fitness challenge to do 10,000 steps every day.
Stay safe and healthy Lynn & Ron .

elizabeth foree

Hola Lynn! You scared the bejesus out of me with your experience with the plague. I was hospitalized with pneumonia in 11/2019 I collected all your suggestions in case we both developed covid-19 symptoms. Since we all love food on this blog, I wanted to share a universal calming ingredient, CBD +THC....IN OLIVE OIL..if you can find it. I bought it from dispensary in San Francisco.
Can you recommend a "safe" european FaceTime site?

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