pandemic fall & winter...

What a strange & weird year 2020 has been.  Covid-19 is still wreaking havoc with the world & 1/2 the country is still at war over the election results.  2020 will definitely be a year to go down in history.

The good news is that a vaccine is being distributed beginning yesterday; Sara was one of the first to get the shot.  320 thousand people have died in the US from this horrible virus & it continues to infect thousands everyday.  

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Danny came down with mild symptoms—loosing his sense of taste & smell—the night before Thanksgiving.  He tested positive on the Friday after the holiday & began his quarantine.  I also had to quarantine, but mine was a little longer, since, technically, I kept getting exposed until he wasn’t considered contagious any longer.  I have never been home for 20 days before; rarely leaving & not seeing any friends.  The only time I left, was a run to the library, grocery store & liquor store—all which did drop off’s in the back of my 4Runner.  I walked twice on trails where I knew I’d encounter no one. Other than that, I was home &  symptom free.  My test came back negative…which seems crazy that I didn’t catch the virus from Danny, but since it’s pretty random how it affects each person, I’m grateful I didn’t get it.

Speaking of Danny, one good thing happened this fall.  On a day off for an out-patient medical procedure, he found & bought a truck!  A 2010 Toyota Tacoma 4x4 with a shell.  He’s excited to do his own build out for camping with me next summer.  So, he will retire his 1996 Tacoma with nearly 394K miles & literally, breaking in 1/2.  

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Fall is the time I generally do projects around here…craft & other wise.  I didn’t have too many on the list, since I got most of them done during lock down last spring.  But, there were a few & now all of those are done.

Ugly Pillow Project…
I had ordered one of the cheap special promotions off an Instagram ad for a personalized pillow cover.  The photo looked like it was printed on plain canvas.  My intent was to use this pillow in Camper when I traveled.  But, once I received the pillow, I didn’t like the fabric.  It’s a shiny woven fabric & looks cheap (it was cheap…what was I thinking?)  The company is supposedly out of Utah, but I’m doubtful where this is really made.  So, I named it the Ugly Pillow Project.  Right away I knew this pillow was too big & impractical to put in Camper.  I’m not one to own throw pillows…up until last year the only ones I had, came with the sofa’s I own.  But, I did buy one when I went to Texas last year, then I made my Crested Butte pillow (heres the finished product) during lockdown. 

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To the Ugly Pillow, I added felt fringe I made & made felt appliqués, now I really like it Awesome Pillow!  But three throw pillows are enoughno more pillows!

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However…during lockdown last spring, I ordered a new quilt for Danny’s bedroom.  When that was done, I no longer needed the European sized pillows for his now-obsolete shams.  I wasn’t sure what to do with these practically new pillows…they were taking up space with no purpose…not something I like.  So, I came up with idea to cover them in a soft flannel fabric…one each for Claire & Emma to use as floor pillows or whatever, the next time they come to visit.  So, that’s what I did.  Thank goodness, I’d already bought the fabric before quarantine & had the felt (my felt pile never diminishes, no matter how much I use!) to make fringe for the edge.  Now we just need to little sweeties to come for a visit! (Oh, we need that sooooo bad!)

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I also have managed to put fairy lights everywhere (well almost) throughout the house!  I added some to the fireplace & we both love it!  I love the way the glow from the lights seems to make the darkness of cold winter nights, warmer & peaceful.

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The last project came about when I tried to store the rest of my felt away.  I decided to use what I had (couldn’t go anywhere to pick out anything new anyway) & make a pouf (footstool) for my bedroom.  I didn’t have the colors I really wanted, but it turned out OK & it’s functional.  I wanted it for the rocking chair in my bedroom so I can sit & read at night (I also added fairy lights & a pom garland to the ceiling in my bedroom).

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Then it was time to get ready for the holidays.  It’s been my tradition, ever since the kids moved away, to get an early start.  All that shipping needs to take place.  And, this year, I made the choice to buy most everything from Amazon…somehow they get the gifts there on time or early…something the USPS has been struggling to do (at least with my stuff) for the past few years.  You can pay for Priority…but it doesn’t do any good & there’s no recourse.  Just an ‘Oh well” & this year they can blame everything on Covid.  So, I was pretty much done before my quarantine.  I ended up only mailing three manilla envelopes & one box through the post office.  It took 9 days for the box to arrive in Orlando…but it finally did.  One envelope to California after 12 days; the others just arrived today (lost track of the number of days; it’s been so long). 

We didn’t figure we’d get to spend Christmas with Sara’s family in Florida, since we were there last year, but we’d hope to go down for Claires 6th birthday in early January.  They have made other plans, so now we’re hoping for Emma’s 3rd birthday in February. We’re missing those sweethearts so much!

We  don’t put up too many decorations or a tree when none of the kids are coming home, so it’s all minimal this year.  I did make a twig tree to put up in the window & made a little “Claire & Emma” shrine with their photo ornaments & hand print ornaments (made those when were down in Orlando in October).  So our Christmas will be slightly boring & lonely without any family.  I am cooking a small special dinner in which I’m hopeful that Danny may have some of his taste & smell back by then…if not, I’ll enjoy it.  And, as always, we'll have some great beer!

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Of course, I’ve done a ton of reading this year too.  Probably more reading than ever before.  I track my books on a site called Goodreads, & as of this post, my total for this year is 108  new books & I’m still reading.  What would I do without books?

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So, 2020 will be ending soon & no one is sorry to see it go.  I’m so grateful that this crazy virus has not affected our family or any friends in any catastrophic way…because it has done that to so many.  It’s a horrible, random virus.  And, we all have hopes the vaccine will make it a thing of the past…never to see it again.

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There were goals I didn’t complete this year as far as travel goes…most all international travel was stopped.  I fell short of camping 100 days in my 4Runner….but fortunate to have spent a glorious 91 days sleeping in my little home-away-from-home.

I ended last years blog with an article titled “2019…A Year of Uncertainty”.  Wow…I had no idea what was coming…it was like a tornado, hurricane & earthquake all in the same year…a shit-storm with Covid-19.  The whole world has suffered this year.

Danny’s mother passed away last May, in her own home & with two of her children next to her.  One of them was Danny & I know it was one of the hardest things he’s ever experienced…to let her go.

I’ve still not gotten too comfortable with Uncertainty….even though Covid-19 has given the whole world ample time to try this year.  But there’s hope…there’s always hope.  And mine is for the world to heal from this virus, for our country to heal from this election, & all of our friends & family have a fantastic 2021!


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