I advise my kids to savor the moment, because life is always changing. Life has certainly changed now.
Like everyone, we locked down suddenly. We shut our four English Schools and moved online. Golds’ Gym, our regular hangout, shut. Our boys’ soccer and kick boxing, closed. Piano and guitar lessons moved online and their Junior high school shut.
We are now a family unit spending 24 hours a day together with no end in sight. Sounds like a nightmare? Curiously, I am really enjoying this time.
I am spending more time with my kids than I have in years. My eldest was so busy with school and soccer, we rarely saw him. My husband and I, busy with work and gym, were always rushed. My younger son home schooled, but he too was busy with soccer, piano, guitar, kickboxing and gym. Now, with nowhere to go and nothing to do, I feel more relaxed.
We’ve settled into a daily routine. First, a confession, we watch TV during meals. Our lunch time viewing is a documentary or TED - ed, [sorry boys, Peep Show doesn’t qualify] usually mirroring our kids’ studies. Today was ‘The Crusades’, a BBC show available on Youtube. We pause, discussing what we learn, kids and husband follow up with a daily essay on the days’ viewing.
Morning is four hours of lessons from 8-12. The boys genuinely enjoy Khan Academy, BBC Homeschooling and Ted-ed. Dave and I help and learn with them. I’m in charge of math, science, finance and yoga. Dave is in charge of footy skills and Beatles studies! Oh, and history and English. The afternoon is more lessons.
The kids made a work out schedule. Weightlifting on our roof balcony, running, football, yoga with Youtube’s Adrienne (a fellow Texan). Now, I’m fitter and more flexible without a pricey gym membership.
Cooking is now divided between all family members. Alfie cooks 2 dinners a week as does Leon. Alfie delights in adding spice (his brother's dislike of spice fueling his desire for more) and Leon likes anything with noodles. Both boys think their own creations are the best.
We speak to our Texas and Liverpool relatives far more frequently. Weekly Zooms with family started tentatively but are now flourishing with piss takes, fun quizzes and musical performances.
Financial worries and the threat of catching COVID-19 hover, but this is a good life for me now. I’m sipping cheap Italian wine on the deck of the Titanic, enjoying it while it lasts.