I keep wondering what to write on this blog, since it has primarily focused on reflections on infertility. I don’t have anything particularly new or insightful to share there because my thoughts and struggles have been directed elsewhere.

My life changed drastically since my last writing – I no longer have a job outside the home because I could not keep up once we adopted our son. I hated this decision even though I knew it was right for our family. I protested, a lot. Learning your limits is hard. But Jesus knows what he’s doing, and this big slow down in my professional life has given me a chance to re-evaluate what I actually want in life.

And so, as the big questions have me stumped and I’m writing in the midst of the COVID-19 Pandemic, here’s a basic “how we’re doing in quarantine” post, in case anyone needed more ideas of how to stay home without going crazy.

What I’m reading:

  • Travels with Charley in Search of America by John Steinbeck
  • Old issues of National Geographic Traveler (I miss you, dear friend)
  • Life of Leo XIII by Bernard O’Reilly (My edition is from 1904, and I’m loving this window into history)
  • My massive cookbook collection, which leads me to…

What I’m cooking:

  • Pizza. Oh my goodness, I’ve perfected it finally. This is my most proud stay-at-home accomplishment.
  • Pasta. It was always my thing anyway but not I’ve got a little more time to roll dough so lucky us!
  • Chicken Fajita Soup
  • Scones
  • Pizzelles
  • Chocolate Chip Cookies
  • Soda Bread
  • Corned Beef and Cabbage
  • White sandwich bread

If any of these interest you, happy to share recipes. And no, I haven’t jumped on the sourdough train yet, but if I can’t get more yeast soon enough then perhaps I will. I just find myself averse to doing it now because so many others are doing it, and part of me enjoys the illusion that I’m original.

What I’m practicing:

  • Guitar – playing loads of praise music while our son jams along on his drums. He can’t talk yet, but boy does he have rhythm. Whether or not he’s a little prodigy remains to be seen.
  • Piano – perfecting Clementi and introductory Beethoven, hoping to get through those books and order something a little more challenging. I do have Beethoven’s piano sonatas waiting for me, but perhaps a more experienced pianist could guide me to the next phase.
  • Chinese – I’ve been doing this on Duolingo for some time now and I’m really enjoying it. Ever since we went to China to bring home our kiddo, I’ve been hooked.

What I’m listening to:

If anyone has any other podcasts you’re loving and think I would too, drop a comment!

What my son is doing:

  • “Helping” in the kitchen
  • Climbing all over the furniture
  • Sidewalk chalk
  • Bubbles
  • Lots and lots of educational TV
  • Practicing dumping out every container he can get his hands on
  • Constant dance parties
  • Rifling through the fridge and eating at teenager levels even though he’s 3.

Next week we start the adventure of distance learning with his special-needs preschool. No idea how that is going to work, but if you’re a special-needs mama and have experience in this, I’d love to hear from you.

How we’re practicing the Faith:

I’ll admit it has been super hard to pray, and time for meditation like I used to do pre-adoption is basically gone. But now that everyone seems to be uploading spiritual resources during the pandemic, I’m getting more spiritual “food” than I have since the day we went to China. This includes:

2 thoughts on “Tales from the Quarantine Valley

  1. I think you are my kindred spirit! I’ve been making lots of homemade pizza (using Bobby Flay’s dough recipe, but I’d love to see your recipe), playing the piano (To Spring by Grieg and the theme from Gone With the Wind), reading BXVI’s Jesus of Nazareth, and remembering all the French I forgot on Duolingo. The social distancing has been very, very good and very, very bad. I always love getting recipes from people who love them; do you have links to your favorites?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Kitty! Nice to “meet” you. I don’t have links to the recipes, that I can think of off the top of my head, but I’ll keep this comment in mind if I think of something. I’ve been doing a little of the Duolingo French too! Just a beginner, though. I took Spanish in high school.


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