“Lockdown life” has now become its own term. Our “new normal”. Nothing about it is normal for any of us, but we have to do our best to get through it.
For the first while, it was novel, exciting even. But now I really can’t remember life in 2019! Now we’ve watched quite a lot of Netflix, tidied the house numerous times and I lost my job. So it’s been quite a year! Lockdown life is something none of us will ever forget! It feels like we’re living in a movie where time feels different. So, I’ve made a list of things that have been helping us cope with lockdown life:
Get out as much as you can
Taking Albie out is definitely the highlight of most of our days at the moment. We’re very lucky to have woods, farmland and Gibside National Trust on our doorstep. When lockdowns over, the beach isn’t far on the metro. Get out, get some fresh air and listen to your music!
Ordering groceries with Amazon Fresh
Amazon has become even more of an obsession of mine during lockdown. Whilst normal food shops were overloaded with people wanting delivery slots, I’ve not had a problem ordering from Amazon Fresh. The first time we ordered, we ordered at 10am and it arrived by 5pm. £40 worth of shopping with free same day delivery? yes please! Many items we ordered were the same price as the regular shops or cheaper, something I didn’t expect! It’s been very handy! I’ve been able to get stuff delivered that I would find hard to get home without a car.
I love that the shopping bags are made of thick paper bags, making it easy to reuse or recycle them.
Planning our days and weeks (and months)
I’ve been bullet journalling for years now and I love it. I’m now currently working on my own digital planners and bullet journal spreads! It is such a brilliant idea as you create your ideal diary, notebook, journal that is exactly what you want. As I learned more about bullet journalling, I started leaving out page setups that I just didn’t find useful. Bullet journalling was a godsend during university as I used it to keep track of my university work, personal life and my blog work. I’ve been loving my Scribbles That Matter journal as the paper quality is excellent, it has a pocket in the back, dotted grid paper and a pen!
Despite not working at the moment, I have made sure to plan out my weeks. We have the cutest Disney family planner in the kitchen and it’s made organising our life a lot easier. We have three columns: Rob, Me and Home and we make sure to write down Robs shifts, anything I need to do and any general events like paying bills, household jobs that need doing etc. By having one family schedule on the wall, it makes it much easier to see if your schedules work!
I’ve made sure to give myself monthly tasks and goals to get me through these lockdowns as we have no idea when they’re ending, but it has come in handy for managing our projects.
Giving ourselves projects to work on in lockdown life
The lockdowns have given us time to work on our house and i’m so grateful for it. So what have we been up to? The big task: redecorate the house. The second big task: declutter and reorganise!
If you follow me on Instagram or Youtube, you’ll know that we are putting the lockdowns to good use and redecorating our house. Rob is sick of painting and I’ve spent probably hundreds of hours looking at furniture, home accessories and organisation tips. I’m so glad we have the time on our hands to do this though as it’s making the house look so much better and we both feel happier living here.
Decluttering and reorganising the house has become my focus at the moment. I found some ‘Mrs Hinch’ style stickers in B&M and white plastic boxes. I’ve used these to organise all of our cupboards and cleaning products. The pantry is getting rejigged and the wardrobes are being decluttered of old clothing ready for the charity shops when they reopen.
We’ve also been decluttering things we no longer use! Lots of old CD, DVDs, books and games have headed off to Music Magpie.
Robs become such a cooking fanatic and I am loving it. So, he’s been making organising the kitchen cupboards and pantry his main priority. We got this great plastic shelf tower on wheels that fits perfectly down the side of the fridge for all his spices, condiments etc. I think I’m going to get a smaller one to go down the side of the washing machine with all the laundry products on.
Ordering items online
I’ve never ordered online as much as I did in 2020. My Amazon orders went up by at least 2X the normal amount and the shops I ordered from have varied far more than usual. With all the decorating we’re doing, a lot of our money has been spent on redecorating items like paint, Ikea orders etc.
I have to admit, I love the ease of online shopping. Especially with us not having a car and a lot of shops being closed or having reduced stock or click and collect only, the shops that are offering online shopping are making life so much easier.
Even my parents who are in their 70s are embracing the world of online shopping. I’ve ordered them a few handy things from Amazon for the house to help them out such as this folding washing up bowl and this handy folding trolley (perfect for taking their recycling out to the bin or for bringing the shopping in from the car, my Mum has said she’ll be taking it into the shops as her own shopping trolley basket when they go back to the shops). They’ve also started doing their weekly Aldi shop as a click and collect, really minimising their need to go out to the shops and put themselves at risk.
Gratitude Journaling and practicing positive thinking
I never thought I’d be someone who would get into gratitude journalling. To me, it seemed a waste of time or a bit silly. But the lockdowns have forced me to deal with really sad and dark times, but they have also taught me to be grateful for what I DO HAVE. Yes I may be unemployed, but I still have a roof over my head, a loving partner, food in the fridge, heating on and enough money to redecorate my home. Just by writing down or even thinking about 3 things that have made me happy today or made me feel grateful today, I’ve noticed a shift in my mindset. I’m far more positive now than before. (Although I have been doing other things to work on keeping a positive mindset).
I’ve bought myself a few books on positive thinking and manifestation and watching youtube videos and it’s a topic I’m very new to, but I’m making sure to try and think more positively. The Secret seems to be the big, jumping off point book for many people and I’m looking forward to diving into it. I wanted to do CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy) but because of lockdown, I decided to try reading up on it first. Vex Kings books seem to be a popular choice in the positive thinking arena, so I’m excited to read this too!
Setting a new routine in lockdown life
Despite not working at the moment, I am trying to live as if I am. For weeks during the first lockdowns, I was so miserable, unproductive and depressed. I soon realised I was wasting this valuable time. So I set myself a new routine. By getting up at my usual time of 7am and not sleeping in until midday or not getting out of bed at all, I suddenly found myself with so much enthusiasm for life, energy to do things and productivity! I wrote out my daily schedule so that I knew what I should be doing to make myself feel better. This included scheduling dog walks for fresh air for me and Albie, one weekly trip to the shops if necessary, time carved out for household chores and time for blogging and then relaxing time! Time blocking has been a game changer for my mood!
Learning new skills and making time for hobbies
Ziangs Chinese Takeaway Cooking Bible
Rob has put his spare time during the lockdowns to good use and has been perfecting his cooking skills. He’s always been fantastic at it but his menus have gotten much better. We have been trying lots of new different cuisines and dishes that we hadn’t tried before!
I’ve been getting myself back into drawing, painting and using Procreate on. my ipad. I love creating stuff but I can only seem to do it when I’m stressed rather than relaxed!