Social distancing is not too much fun, eh? Well, it’s bad enough to feel stuck inside during the week when we’d otherwise be at the office or on the job. But, with the “first official pandemic weekend” (feel free to steal this phrase) nearly upon us, if you are like me, you’re wondering how to pass the time in at least a semi-productive, meaningful and stress reducing manner.

Gyms are closed, restaurants are closed, places of worship are closed, many other public places are closed… What are we to do? Taking these circumstances into consideration, below are some of my weekend plans to do with myself and with the family:

  • As I type this, one place that the government has not yet closed is… the great outdoors! All of those things that we can do inside, we can do outside and then some. Go for a run or a bike ride, yoga, stretching, even creative strength workouts can be done in the fresh air. Find a new trail or park to explore, create a scavenger hunt on the go or explore a new part of town. Even just a long drive is a great way to change the scenery. As an added bonus, the evidence is staggering that time spent in nature is good for our mental health and overall wellbeing.
  • Also, they can’t touch my books. I’ve got my Bible, my daily meditations and several others I plan to dive into over the weekend. Right now, I’m reading “The Confessions” by St. Augustine in print form and “Suite Francaise” by Irene Nemirovsky via audiobook, which has some scenes of eerie similarity to the run on toilet paper we’ve all witnessed (or taken part in…). I’ll certainly add some lighter selections as well and let me know what you’ll be reading or if you’d like any other suggestions.
  • Start a new family tradition. Play games and be curious about each other. One game we’ve come up with is our take on charades. We make clues based on things in our lives – with young kids, that means lots of Disney and Nickelodeon characters, zoo animals, etc. We even make ourselves into clues and it’s always a riot to see us act as each other – although “grumpy dad” is completely inaccurate and not funny at all…
  • Make a meal together. Nothing brings people together like food, right? Planning and assigning tasks, mismatching cuisines – orange chicken and biscuits is delicious, by the way – is a good way to pass quality time together.
  • True, that they haven’t yet taken the outdoors from me, but they did steal my Spring Break vacation – they are a wily bunch, after all. While our plans seem dashed, they are truly only delayed. In fact, now we have time to plan other adventures in our future. Another vacation and all the details, certainly. But also, drives through the state and surrounding states checking out historical markers and sites along the way. Google the history of the place when you get there and find another park or trail nearby.
  • Lastly, turn off the news. OK, check once, maybe twice a day. But the odds are the more you check the news the more likely you are to discover that outside has been closed and I simply can’t have that.

Please reach out if we can be of any help and as always,

Be well.

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drluis@orleanspsych.com
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