Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Refilling the Cup during COVID19

April 15, 2020

This is normally Tax Day.  But the government has pushed off Tax Day to July 15th.   What are you doing to celebrate not having to pay your taxes for a few more months?  Confetti Party?

Encouragement for Caregivers


AlzAuthors is an organization that provides networking and cross-promotion for authors who have written about dementia.  Many of the authors, like me, have written about their experience as a family caregiver.  Some are experts in the field and some have written books for children.  There is a wide variety of books.

This week I was invited to create a short video of encouragement and solidarity for caregivers dealing with even more stress during the COVID-19 stresses.

Here is what I sent them.






One day I was feeling teary... it is only natural with all the changes and worries we are facing.  I am sure most of us have our moments if not days.

I went to bed sad but told myself that it was ok to be sad but that the next morning I would do some things to refill my cup.  I had no idea what that was, but I have a few tricks that have worked for me in the past.

I woke up still sad.

That's ok, I told myself.  I massaged my cheeks upward to force my face into a smile.  Then I started thinking about who I can reach out to.  Who is having a rough time too and might appreciate a virtual or six-foot greeting.

Before the day was out I had set up four COVID-style happy hours.  Because we are in Florida we can gather in small groups at a distance outside.  So these happy hours are on people's driveways or on a shady patio.

COVID-Style means: 6 feet apart; chairs are cleaned or bring your own chair; fewer than 8 people; no snacks or drinks shared; no passing of dishes, phones or stuff;  no entering or passing through hosts home; bring your own beverage.

The gatherings usually last only two hours or less.  Time to connect and then our bladders or our hunger send us home.  

Blueberry Pickin' - COVID safe

My house-mate Carolyn and I rode our trikes yesterday down Hwy 44 to Floridas Best Blueberry Farm.  It was a blast.  There was a slight cloud cover protecting us from the full heat of the sun, the traffic was light, and the activity was wonderfully clean with wide spaces between people.

 Highway 44 has a sidewalk for about the first three miles heading east of Inverness.

 It was nice to see things up close, places I normally see while speeding by in a car at 55 miles per hour.


 I had read in the Citrus Chronicle about the coming of an RV park along Hwy 44 near Inverness.  Now there are signs up.

 The shoulder was roomy enough for three wheels and the traffic was lighter than normal.

 About the last quarter mile of the road into the farm was loose sand.

Even the grassy areas the sand was loose and we could hardly get traction.  So we locked our trikes and walked the rest of the way into the farm.


 When we arrived at the gate there was a sign with instructions on COVID safety.  There were hand washing stations, then the clean buckets and bags.  When we were done  there was a big vat of disinfectant water where we were to place the bucket.  Any cash payment we were to place in bucket with disinfectant also.

There were many many rows of berry bushes.  Lots of room for us pickers to spread out.


 I picked two buckets full.


While I was picking I heard familiar voices.  I looked up and there was my former neighbor Sara (on the right in pink).  With Sara was Wilma and Wilma's niece.   They are a little closer than social distancing rules allow for the picture.  Wilma's husband of 70 years passed away recently so closer proximity is needed right now.  Wilma and Hesh were our adoptive second parents when we lived in their neighborhood.  We spent many hours playing cards and chatting with them.

I wanted to step in and hug too, but real hugs will have to wait.


Book III

I have started... just started to gather information for a book about the time just before George's diagnosis.  A time when we rode our trikes from Northern Illinois to Florida.  It will be a while...



Weeroll Update


Whoo hoo!  A neighbor, Dave, is "stay-at-home" bored.  His wife is keeping him pretty busy with a to-do list.  But still he offered to help me with anything I needed on the Weeroll.  Isn't that fantastic???

Today we met and I showed him the trailer.  I had written out everything I wanted done.  He was good with it and offered to make me a table that will fold down out of the way as well as the counter in the front nose of the trailer.

I am excited to see what he does.  I am trying to keep it simple.  The less I have the less to maintain and the less weight to tow.

Another thing I want to do is remove far back seat of the van so I can lighten up and use the stow-n-go cubby hole for storage too.  But I have to think it through.  When I remove the seat, the floor of the van over the cubby hole disappears too.  I have to design an easy to lift and hold up lid for the cubby hole.

Well, I have time to think on it and plan.

Next time I post I may have pictures of the progress.  Until then, stay well and keep refilling your cup.



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