Firstly, a massive social distancing hug (so basically an awkward smile and slight jazz hands) to all of you who read, liked and commented on part one of these diaries. I have a worrying feeling there may be many more of these as currently at day 4, it seems the very tip of the iceberg. But in all seriousness, thank you, your comments mean a lot and those little thumbs up icons really do make me smile.
So how are we all? I hope you’re all getting through this the best way you all can and the healthiest you all can for that matter. These are weird times aren’t they? It feels a little bit like that part between Christmas and New Year when (if you’re lucky) you’re off work still and have absolutely no idea what day it is and it’s fine to eat whatever’s in the fridge, no question.
Except it’s most definitely NOT ok to pick at anything in the cupboards or fridge whenever you want to. I found myself shouting at my poor son earlier today, “You can’t eat two bags of crisps just because you fancy it! We have to make these things last!” Yep, that was me saying that, the woman who single handedly polished off a good three bottles of wine over the weekend. (Not big, not clever, but bloody enjoyed it. Do NOT judge.)
So today was Monday. Therefore, it was the beginning of the brand new home schooling regime. Or Schooling at Home Involving Toughs (Fun fact, our last name is Tough, as in “when the going gets”) I also prefer to shorten this rather long school name into its rather fantastic (if I say so myself) and very apt acronym. S.H.I.T.
The S.H.I.T school started very well this morning I must say. We began by making beds, with me teaching my boy not “quite” hospital corners (where’s the need when you have duvets?!) but pretty much the basic necessities of get your rubbish off the floor, make your bed, brush your teeth and please don’t wear approximately 7296 outfits per day because it will send Mummy into a laundry meltdown.
Speaking of which, we then moved on to that particular life skill - laundry. Pick out the white things (“these aren’t white Mummy, they’re Daddy’s grey socks.” “They used to be white. Just throw them in please.”) and pop them in. Press some buttons and “voila” the magic happens! This was a novelty for precisely the time it took for throwing in the Vanish Whites Powder and the beeping noises to stop. Getting it out of the machine and hung up was not as exciting. At all.
Next up? A bike ride! Yes my friends, as risky as it might sound, we decided to, as we have done for the past few days, take our bikes out and Get Some Exercise. Now, we are lucky enough to live in a pretty quiet area. After three bike rides over the weekend including today, I would estimate we have seen (from afar) approximately 3 people. So right now, I’m hoping the lack of people combined with the fresh air has to be a Good Thing. (Plus, I recently bought a new bike and I love it. It doesn’t even have a basket and it’s not even pink! It’s an actual, practical bike and I love it. I might even get why people like it but ssssssssshhh.
Back home and the child is hungry. Again. Having already had breakfast, he insists on more. I attempt to have the conversation of “well, you’re not allowed to pick in the fridge at school now are you?” but realising I was hungry myself, I soon gave up that fight and two rounds of toast were made. Mostly to use the bread up before it goes out of date, despite not knowing where our next loaf is coming from. (What even are these times?!)
I then check the school website to see what homework has been set, thinking how lovely it will be to complete some together. Just like they show on TV of home schooled children, happily sitting next to their parents answering questions beautifully (not to mention correctly) and laughing together at how “blessed” we are.
In the words of Craig David, Re-re-wind. Because absolutely none of that happened. The child lounges on the chair in front of the computer. In fact, he sits any possible way he can without actually managing to look at the screen. Quite a feat to be fair and makes me wonder if we should try yoga instead of bike riding tomorrow. The maths problems (and now I know exactly why they are named as such) load and off we go. Answer 25 times tables questions, you have 6 seconds for each question.
Clutching my coffee, (I feel this all will be fine as long as I don’t run out of the caffeine) I watch as the acronym of our school name hits the fan.
It would seem that six seconds to answer a question is not a challenge, no no! The challenge lies in just how long he can leave it before pressing enter and submitting the answer. When it reaches a “problem” that I can’t even do in the time provided I start to wonder my own ability at home schooling and really start to regret my failure at maths GCSE.
“Break time” - in which we make cupcakes. Because it’s a fun and, not to mention, an “Instagrammable” thing to do. (And you get to eat them afterwards more importantly.) I throw caution to the wind and allow him to crack eggs (turns out he’s better at that than I am, I know who’s getting an omelette lesson very soon) and use the electric whisk. (Not quite so successful, do you know what happens when you mix icing sugar with a full powered electric whisk? Dusty icy carnage that’s what.)
45 minutes later we have iced cupcakes, a filthy kitchen and a child who ate two cakes within seconds of them being “ready” and now needs a lie down after he runs around the house like a Tasmanian Devil despite Mummy asking nicely if we could do some Lovely Reading together.
I give in, finish cleaning and anti baccing the kitchen, having found Sing-a-long Grease on Sky. I’m slightly bitter because I missed Popmaster on Radio 2 to be honest.
My doorbell goes and, frankly shocked that anyone would be coming round I answer, only to see a delivery driver literally sprinting away and my Gousto food delivery box on the doorstep. For anyone wondering what this is, it’s basically meals in a box, and, at times like this a bloody lifesaver. I shout thank you to the poor man and worry for his job. Perhaps the delivery guys who have been throwing the parcels as close (or not) to your front door and then absolutely pegging it had it right all along?! (Not you, delivery man who put my parcel in the recycling bin right before it was collected. Not you.)
I save a meal out of the box to give to my Mum and, knowing that she’s bored out of her mind let her know it’s on my doorstep. She lives minutes away and funnily enough, within minutes she arrives, grabs the box, we have a conversation through an open window a good six metres apart and we throw some cupcakes in for good measure. (In the box, I’m not an animal throwing cupcakes at my Mother I promise.) It all feels very bizarre that I can’t let her in, have a cuppa and give her a hug.
Thanks to social media, I discover that we missed the event of the day - the Joe Wicks P.E lesson on YouTube. Child and I stand ready and waiting starting the playback and realising too late that I have slippers on and neither of us have a drink. Pause and we’re ready again.
A few stretches later and child is already moaning that he can’t do it. It’s “too hard”. My query of “well what the hell do you do in PE at school then?” falls on deaf ears. (Also my under the breath calls of “lightweight” which were mainly for my own enjoyment and he didn’t hear. Honest.)
We start again. Five minutes later, just as Joe is really getting into it and we’re now attempting press-ups (despite Joe, the curly haired pretty boy with, I hear, the amazing abs having a broken finger - bless his little soul) and child announces he needs a poo. I finish the workout, child does not re-appear until it’s all over. Strange that.
Positives of today - bike ride was awesome. Sunny morning, no one around, loved it. Child has managed to read a “bit” of a book, done some Maths and devour most of my cupboards. I still have food for the week and we’re all well.
Negatives - I have realised that I am really REALLY bad at maths. Can’t wait for some English homework.
Bonuses - I had an email today saying I’d won the lottery! Opened it and it’s a tenner. Probably for the best as even if I’d won the jackpot, where the hell would I go?!!!
Hope you’re all doing really well and navigating through all this the very best you can. I will be back. If I don’t get all this down on paper / a keyboard, I will officially lose the plot 😂 so hope you enjoy xx