Taking it Day by Day
“Dot.calm” by Jane Silverman
Since the start of the New Year, we had an earthquake (in Florida for goodness sake!), changed the clocks forward, leaped a day, had a Friday the 13th and Mercury went into Retrograde (whatever that means). And then there is COVID-19. There is no doubt that this is a confusing and uncertain time for all of us… a character-building moment (or so I tell my teens) to “stay calm and carry-on.”
With our schedule-bending array of sports, classes, lectures, films, and cultural events on hold, let’s all take this moment to reach out (but don’t touch!) family and friends and use this time to turn inward for calm and enrichment. The experts say creating an indoor-daily routine and creating structure helps you “wake-up with a sense of ownership, order, and organization in life.”
8am: Go For a Walk
The free Charity Miles award winning app charitymiles.org uses GPS to track the distance you run, bike or walk, then steps in to donate up to .25¢ per mile to your charity of choice. Your morning ritual can go a long way to changing the world and helping charities hit hard by the economic downturn. Go to Menu, Change Charity to choose one of nearly 50 charities to support. Or go to the Help section to have your favorite charity added.
9am: Work it
Staying fit is the best antidote for boredom and anxiety. Try the 7-Day free trial for the Sworkit Fitness & Workout app sworkit.com with 300 workout routines and over 400 exercises which you can mix and match to your fitness level. You can also go to YouTube youtube.com to search for free exercise classes online for low impact, beginner, seniors, and more.
11am: Study a New Language
The Duolingo app duolingo.com makes learning fun with bright graphics, games, and more. Follow it level by level to study 30 languages or brush up on ones nearly forgotten.
Noon: Lunch Time!
The Big Oven app and website bigoven.com has over 500,000 recipes organized by collections (soups, low carb, gluten-free, quick and easy, snack attack and more) and even a Use Up Leftovers search. Its recipe scan lets you upload handwritten, typed or web-based recipes to its Recipe Box for safekeeping. There’s nothing like comfort food at a time like this!
1pm: Color Me Happy
The Let’s Make Art website letsmakeart.com is a home delivery monthly watercolor painting kit. Each month you receive four new watercolor projects with everything you need from video tutorials to paper, paint, and step by step instructions. Choose from a Watercolor, Lettering, or Art Journaling Box (paintbrushes and palette sold separately). Their ethos: “If you can let go of the expectation that every attempt should be perfect then you can make room for what really matters: Mindfulness and Having Fun. Give yourself permission to make mistakes.”
3pm: Daily Culture Fix!
Did you cancel your trip to Paris, Spain, New York or other C-19 hotspots? Then take a virtual tour in all things art. With the Google Arts & Culture app artsandculture.google.com take a journey to must-see museums around the world and step inside with colorful 360degree video tours; explore stories and digital exhibits curated by experts; zoom into the details of your favorite masterpiece.
4pm: Puppy Time
A bored pooch can be a problem (especially for some dogs who need input-input-input). Make home-time fun-time with the Puppr training app puppr.app with over 50 tricks and step-by-step photos and videos from Silly (Roll Over, Dance), or Charming (Say Your Prayers, Cross Paws) to Useful (Close Door, Put Toys Away).
Mind Your P’s & Q’s
No pets? Play the Scrabble Original Crossword Game app scrabble.hasbro.com one-on-one vs. a computer-generated challenger or a random anonymous opponent. Some fun memory apps use neuroscience and daily games to help train your brain and improve memory: Peak Brain Training (peak.net), Lumosity (lumosity.com), and Elevate (elevate.com) will do the trick.
5pm: Cocktail Hour
Self-quarantining doesn’t have to mean going it alone. Download Skype skype.com to your phone, computer or laptop and plan a daily video call or a group video call with friends and family (up to 50 at a time); schedule a face to face film night, a happy hour, a wine tasting or just a good old gab. I am planning a birthday toast with my friends as the next best thing to a party skype.com/en/features/group-video-chat.
6pm: Dinner Time
This could be a good time to try a meal kit like Hello Fresh hellofresh.com – no need to shop for food, each kit (and the easy step by step directions to cook it) comes right to your doorstep with fresh pre-measured ingredients. Just pick a plan that matches your lifestyle: choose your food preference, number of people and how many meals you would like each week.
7:30pm: Nights at the Opera
Every night until they reopen their doors, the Metropolitan Opera is streaming encore presentations from the award-winning Live in HD series at metopera.org at 7:30pm EDT (available for 20 hours). If the website is slow to buffer, then download the Met Opera on Demand app, which features unlimited streaming of more than 600 full-length performances with English subtitles (and other languages), 100 presentations from every season of the Live in HD series, classic telecasts from 1977, and radio broadcasts dating back to 1935.
This is a good time to download the award-winning Calm app calm.com which claims to bring more clarity, joy, and peace to your daily life (who couldn’t use some of that??). It offers guided meditation sessions, soothing nature sounds and scenes, and even adult sleep stories that read you to sleep — warm cocoa not included.
Do you need help with an app or have one you would like to share? Email me your phone number and I will call you back: firstname.lastname@example.org.