Friday, May 01, 2020

April - the Coronavirus Diaries

Wednesday April 1

It's finally April! March was such a crazy month. 

Hello Fresh has been nice to have during these times. We usually only order a box once a month, but we've increased since it helps out with groceries. This pork bowl was a hit on Instagram, with several people asking for the recipe. 


As seen on a daily walk. 




April 2

Cat face. 

I got designs back from Modsy! Faster than expected. Here are a couple options they created for our front room. And since everyone is bored, I created Instagram polls for all this. 


April 3

Finally Friday! But what does that even mean anymore? We called up Afghan Kitchen for dinner. It's so so good, and I really hope they can survive this thing. I hadn't driven my car in a few days, and it wouldn't start without a jump. Whoops. Going to be driving it every 3 days from now on. 


This little weirdo likes to squeeze himself into the tiny shelf. 





April 4

Saturday almost managed to feel like a normal day. General Conference started, and I was able to watch most of it. During the break, I signed up for Peloton's 90 day free trial and went for a run. I hate running! But I really liked the work out and will definitely keep doing it. They have lots of options, so I'll be trying out yoga and strength training and stretching too. 



 I also found some pantry supplies at Orson Gygi, so hooray for curbside pickup. I can bake!

I asked Modsy to meld the two options together to create a third, and they came back very quickly with changes. I really think I like number 3 the best! You can order furniture through them if you like, and for some of the pieces I may need to, since I can't find the exact products online. But others are from major retailers, or I may do a cheaper option for a few things, but yeah, I feel like this room is going to come together. It's nice to have a path forward, even if I need to spread out purchases over the next many months. 


We spring-cleaned the grill in the afternoon, so it was ready for an awesome dinner. 


April 5

More online church watching. And cats being helpful. We also started watching Unorthodox on Netflix, which I find very interesting. 





April 6

Hey people (probably mostly in Utah County), listen up!!


Right before lockdown I ordered a bunch of clothing, but now I have little reason to wear it. I wanted to get those things returned, so the cats helped me print return labels. And after driving around for a good while, I found a UPS drop box that didn't require any social interaction. Yes, I looked up drop off locations on the UPS site but many of them were wrong. 


Planning to do this on Friday. Great way to kick off the Easter weekend. 


April 7

Decent day at work followed by a nice walk. Neighbors are getting creative and spring is here. 

Also ordered some fertilizer for our lawn. We kinda gave up last year since we moved in mid-May and missed the window. And then we didn't figure out the sprinkler system for awhile. Going to attempt green grass this year!





Wednesday April 8

A rather ambitious day! I had a full day of work and decided to make cinnamon rolls during breaks. Even though the day started out like this. Leo buried himself under the covers, and Miriam always has to be touching me. 


A very enriched dough that took awhile to rise. I'm not great at rolling it into a perfect rectangle, but good enough. Pecans courtesy of my grandparents' tree. 


Ta-da! First time ever. 

I managed to get out on a lovely day for a run - thanks, Peloton. Then a fast shower, blow dried my hair (who is even doing that anymore), hopped on a Zoom meeting with the young women in the ward/neighborhood and we did a game of charades. Then another Zoom call with a group of friends. Yay socializing in this new world!



Thursday, April 9

Fairly busy day at work, pushing a couple projects towards the finish line. In personal news, the debate of the day is which chair to order. Both on sale through Monday, and at least one of these companies only does a sale 2x a year. I don't want to wait til Sept for another sale. when it takes another 8-12 weeks to get a chair. 


We did an evening drive to keep the car in shape and found some weird clouds on the way home. Also I got a recipe exchange invite from a friend - one of those chain letter things - and while I did my part, other people down the line did not and I didn't get any recipes. Oh, well. 



Friday, April 10

Good Friday - another day of fasting for relief from the pandemic and to remember Easter. Kinda tough during a regular work day, but I tried. For dinner we picked up food from Chile Tepin downtown, and we ordered a feast! Queso fundido, a huge grilled platter of stuff, a combo plate with enchiladas and chile relleno, chips and salsa. We got three meals from it, and that's a great way to end a fast. 


With bloated bellies we took a long walk in a nearby neighborhood that we have not explored yet. It had lots of fancy, nice houses. 



I came home and managed to work on a puzzle, in spite of some little imps who want to be on the table and steal pieces. I bought a puzzle roll-up thing awhile ago, but it's kind of annoying, so I found some large heavy books to cover my work when I took a break. 



Saturday, April 11

Today is Meghan's birthday! One of the most social people I know, so isolation has been extra tough. Her roommates planned a surprise birthday drive-by, so we took a pass by her house and said hello to her and some other friends from a distance. Nice to see some people's faces!

Then I ate incredible leftovers for lunch, finished a puzzle, ordered more puzzles from Galison, and realized I bought the wrong lawn stuff when it got delivered. Oops. At least we can still use that fertilizer on a smaller area. We have a few boxes to plant things. And I'm frustrated with our lawn and what to do with it, especially after ordering the wrong stuff, so we decided to try out Sunday lawn care. I see it advertised all over social media, so we did an order. They'll send us prep stuff in the spring, a summer treatment, and a fall prep package, all for a very reasonable price. Plus a soil sample test! It should be here soon, so we'll see how that goes. We also got a Hello Fresh box, so there are a couple good meals in store for us. 


Also got our One Utah shirts in the mail - $ to a good cause, plus a shirt, and I a got a nightgown/dress thing in the mail that I have been living in for days (now that I write this several days later).


Sunday, April 12
Easter! Didn't really feel like Easter without church in the morning and a family Easter dinner.  Leo woke me up, per usual. But he's so cute.


Afternoon spring walk before making lemon garlic chicken and watching one of my favorite movies ever. 



Monday, April 13
Back to the grind. Which doesn't really feel like a grind. I really like my job and am very grateful to have it. Plus they're paying for our internet this month. Hooray!

I ended up ordering one of the chairs that's on sale. Last chance! It's kind of a lot of $ but I think I'll love them. And you can buy the chair without choosing the fabric upfront, so I've got fabric samples on the way so I can compare with my couch and other colors. Eeeek!

Managed a quick Peloton HIIT workout at home. Amazing what 20 minutes can do. 


Tuesday, April 14

Solid workday, and a solid workout. 45 minutes internal run with Peloton. I hate running, but for some reason those coaches can get me to actually run and do a decent workout. Built a fort for the cats, and while Miriam spends hours and hours underneath it, today she decided she wanted to be on top. 

Time for groceries again, so I did an order with the catering company for all the basics. Still need another grocery run for "the fun stuff."
 




Wednesday, April 15

Woke up early to prep for a solid morning of meetings, and then the first two got cancelled. I took a mid-morning nap like the cat. The afternoon was busy, I managed a walk, and then we had YW again via Zoom. This time we colored or did art projects and just hung out together. Since I am not artistically leaning, I sorted through fabric samples for new chairs and did Sudoku puzzles. 

Also did some major food runs today. First to the catering company that's selling groceries. Did all the basics there. Then I braved Harmon's for the "fun food." I was about to run out of Dr Pepper. Can't have that happen. We should be set for a couple weeks with groceries. 




Thursday, April 16

Another work day. Maybe getting back to normal workflow soon. Did a walk. Lovely day. 



Friday, April 17

I should be in Japan today, but sadly I am not. I did take the day off work, however, which felt really nice. I slept in, did some reading, and got up to tackle a couple painting projects. 

I really want to paint the guest room, but dealing with the lacquer on the trim has been a nightmare. I got frustrated with the state of that room while starting the project today and went to find some carpenters to get quotes and see what it'll take to rip out the trim and do it right, and while the trim is gone I can properly sand down some of the walls that need help. 

Gave up on the bedroom and instead started painting the dining room table. Super nice day, so I took all the pieces to the driveway and cleaned the table and chairs. Easy chalk paint project that doesn't need sanding and priming. 


We did takeout from O'Falafal nearby. Really good stuff. 


Saturday, April 18

Buffing off the wax coating from the chairs - looks good! I found some sealant in the garage and used that to cover the table top. It takes a few coats with a couple hours drying in between, so I got that started in the morning. Also got a roast started in the crockpot. I haven't had good luck with those the last couple times. Eight hours on low doesn't seem to do much to tenderize the meat, so I end up doing another 4+ hours on high to break it down and then I'm starving for dinner at 9pm. 


Anthony and I went on a longer walk down to the fancy neighborhood. 

I've never seen these weird little flowers before. 


As we got close to home on our walk, we heard someone trying to start their car, and the battery was clearly dead. A guy was parked in a small business lot and no one else was around, so we walked over and shouted that we could go get our car and be back in a few minutes. Anthony has a nifty charge pack that can jump a car without having to hook it up to another car, so that's easy to do. We had him on his way in no time. He was very thankful and gave us a couple squirts of hand sanitizer and some masks. So nice. I'm happy we could help him out. 


Time for some foot pampering while watching free HBO content, like the Theranos and McMillions documentaries. 


Sunday, April 19

Lots to do today. Did some church reading in the morning and attended a Relief Society meeting on Zoom - trial run, and it went well. Got the table put back together and moved into the kitchen. Hooray! I really like how it looks, even though the paint job isn't perfect. 



In the afternoon I wrote a little card and assembled a little bag with confetti and a kit-kat to drop off for a few of my YW. Anthony went with me and was the door-dash-dropper. Then it was time for Miriam and Leo's birthday! They were born sometime in April. They got a can of tuna to share and I made cupcakes for the humans.


The vanilla cake batter from Preppy Kitchen is probably the best I have ever tasted. The frosting didn't look so great, so no photos of the finished product. But very delicious! And it's fun to play with food coloring. 




Monday April 20

Anthony took today off work, since his company gave everyone a floating holiday. He headed out to the west desert to explore, one of his favorite things. Honestly we both loved some space from each other. We get along really well, but it was nice to mix it up. 

I got some laundry and cleaning done. Leo burrowed into it right away. I also finally bought some cushions for our kitchen table. Since it got a makeover, it should also get some cushions, right? Plus these are about our only chairs and we both sit on them at the desk to work and they are SO HARD. Our bums need support. I wish I'd grabbed my office chair from work while I had the chance. 


Anthony enjoyed his day and then we had new things to talk about and share with each other since we were more than 10 feet apart all day!



Tuesday April 21

Fairly packed day at work - I'm finding I much prefer those days. In personal news, I'm narrowing down fabric choices for the chairs I ordered. I think I know what I want, but I also want to compare to another company's fabrics to get the right shade. Those comparison samples will be here next Monday. And so will our lawn care stuff from Sunday! Very excited for that. I did also receive more paint samples from Clare. As much as I want to do dark and moody in our office, it gets light sunlight so I should probably go light. Either way, the yellow paint there now has got to go. 

Leo wakes me up most mornings, coming to lay on my chest. It's sweet and annoying. 


Neither of us felt like doing much for dinner. I am hitting my limit with cooking. We have heard good things about Hector's Burritos up the road, so we jumped in the car to beat their new 8pm closing time, only to find out that they're closed completely. Boo. We settled for Five Guys. During some late night phone browsing, the sad, sad news is that my birthday trip in Sept is officially cancelled. I was holding out some hope that it could happen. Thankfully we put down a grand deposit of a whopping $2 so I'm not worried about contending with refunds. But I am bummed. And we couldn't go to that region again until Sept-ish in 2021, due to season and what we want to do. 

In better news, I ran across some random messages on Twitter praising a piece of work that my team just released, so that is very exciting! I'll hold onto that for awhile. 






Wednesday April 22

Decent day at work. Since my birthday trip was officially cancelled by the tour company last night, I've debated all day about pulling the trigger on some house stuff from my Modsy designs. There's a bookshelf that I really loved, and a few days ago I looked, it was out of stock. I found it on other retailer websites but for nearly 50% more cost. Ugh! It came back in stock via Modsy, though backordered, and I figured I should buy it. So I did. I really need to stop shopping now. Not buying anything else til July at least!


I did manage a decent walk/run thanks to Peloton. Really nice day. And then I came home at the end of the YW Zoom meeting where they made some marshmallow brownie cookie thing. I'm glad I didn't bake anything else because I don't need anymore sugar. But I think the girls had a good time.  I made another late night purchase of a new product - Billie razors. I see tons of ads and hear good things. Plus I'm terrible at actually replacing razor blades, so this seems like a great price to get them sent to me every couple months. Really need to stop buying things. 




Thursday April 23

This morning was another big work meeting covering another reorganization. I've been pretty optimistic and even-keeled about all the work changes over the last many months, but for some reason this one is hitting harder. I thought we'd be more stable by now, and while we're doing great things right now, I don't feel as confident about job stability.  

The cats have an updated blanket fort and while our couch is HUGE, there is hardly anywhere for me to sit. Thanks, kitties. 

 

I was a little snippy today and didn't feel like doing much. It was rainy, and I had to drag myself out of the house for a 20 minute walk. Cooked stakes for dinner and I never quite get them right. I remember now why I rarely make red meat. Got out of the house for a Sonic run, because we both needed an outing and a milkshake.



Friday, April 24

Quiet day at work. Fridays usually are. Anthony and I had our monthly therapy session in the morning, still virtual style. I did a long walk in the evening and listened to my audio book (The Light in Hidden Places). Tame Impala in August got postponed. Boo. 



Saturday, April 25

Fairly good day. I've come to enjoy the weekends quite a bit, knowing that I can put work away. I slept in and eventually made a dutch baby for breakfast. One of my favorites, if I actually make breakfast. Then I went on a decent run. 


Started doing a little bit of lawn prep, since our lawn care plan would arrive in the mail soon. Pulling weeds and killing dandelions. Anthony went on an afternoon skateboard ride with our bishop, and I did a curbside food pickup at a restaurant so I could take a meal to Sergio and Melissa, who just had a baby. As I pulled up to their house, I could hear them inside, so I backed away from the door after knocking, and they came out for a social distance chat. And while I was there, Miles and Huong showed up, so we had a nice chat. We ordered Indian food for dinner, and I got a little snippy before, since I was hangry after only eating one meal. I told Anthony I wanted dinner around 5:30, but he wanted to nap around then. And then by the time we were ready to order/pick up food, we couldn't get restaurants to answer our phone calls. So yeah, we ate dinner at 7:30. I ordered my food not spicy, but it was still a little hot for me. I spent the rest of the evening making/eating cookie dough and watching bad Netflix shows about figure skaters. Pouty. 


Sunday, April 26

Woke up and did some church reading. Then I finished this book - This Tender Land - which I loved. I don't usually enjoy much fiction, but this was a page-turner for me. 


Anthony and I had talked about driving out to Stansbury Island, but when the time came, we felt meh. Going up to the cemetery was much easier, and we both like it. I still try to find people from the scavenger hunt I made a couple years ago. Lots of notable people buried here. 


Evening of TV and scrounging for dinner. We tried to avoid the grocery store on the weekends, since they are packed. We're on the last bit of leftovers until Tuesday morning when we can get Walmart pick up. 

Monday, April 27

I stayed up way too late Sunday night and subscribed to the NYT games. Big fan of Vertex and Tiles. Easing into Crosswords. Not my strong suit. I'll be on the Mondays for a long time. 


This is our disaster room with the paint/trim problems that I don't know how to tackle. The bedframe is still turned sideways, and little imp cat climbed up and settled on top. 

Our lawn stuff came in the mail! Our lawn needs lots of help, and I don't know how much this is actually going to do. But if feels like lawn care for dummies, so we'll try it. I think we'll need to reseed the whole lawn in the fall, but we'll start with something now. First to kill the dandelions. We got our sprinklers turned on and tested, so we're a go for watering. Got a good run in the evening after a good day at work. 



Tuesday, April 28

Woke up with a massive headache and felt crummy all day. No fever, no cough, I don't have the 'rona. Managed through a couple morning meetings and took it easy in the afternoon. Got my new Billie razor in the mail, and while I don't really need another mail subscription service, this one seems worth it. I never buy new razors. 


Our grocery order was a bit delayed today, but eventually we got more supplies. Hooray for all the toppings on a batch of nachos. Can't do without sour cream and cilantro and olives and avocado. 


I find lots of bell peppers with their babies growing inside. So fascinating. 

Still need to choose the fabric for my chairs. I think the bottom one is the front runner, but the heathered fabric is really cozy feeling and came in last minute to catch my eye. Hmmmm.

Wednesday, April 29

How is April over?! Today also felt like a Thursday, I wish it was. I managed to get through a massive spreadsheet at work in the afternoon, then quickly grilled some chicken for dinner. I dug up some lawn to send a soil sample back to our mail-in lawn company. Curious if that will tell me anything interesting. Did a YW Zoom meeting and then Taylor and Courtney called. Got to see the wild kiddos for a minute. I sure miss them! We did an evening walk and ran into my neighbor who is a coach at Orangetheory. Gym will be back open in a few weeks. I guess it will probably be okay? They're taking it seriously with major cleaning between classes, so hopefully I'll be fine. I've missed the gym, but I have enjoyed the outdoor Peloton runs too. 



Thursday, April 30

Ribs day! I've never made them, but figured I should give them a shot. Tried the 3-2-1 method, so it took most of the day. 


Some early prep, smoke, add some sugar and juice, wrap, cook, unwrap, baste with sauce, cook a little more. Turned out pretty well! The flavor was great. Not quite as tender as it could be, but I think the grill ran a little hot, and next time I will add more juice/spray it down every half hour. I think that'll help. 


We went outside at 1pm for the F-35 flyover from Hill Air Force Base - a salute to healthcare workers. It made me surprisingly emotional. Cool to see. 

I went on a long-ish walk after dinner and finished up my audio book - The Light in Hidden Places. It's a true story about a Catholic teenager and her young sister in Poland who hid 13 Jews in their attic for a couple years. Pretty amazing. Then I came home and watered the lawn to prep for lawn treatment in the morning, except it rained a bit, so I should probably hold off on applying it. So curious how much/how little it will help our poor grass. I also officially chose my fabric for the chairs I ordered, so I'll see new chairs for our front room in 8-12 weeks. And my puzzle order finally shipped! I've been missing new puzzles. 


April flew by. Whoa. 













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