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As we all learn that staying apart as much as we can is the only way to beat the spread of Covid-19, here at de Guide, we decided to shine a light on how Greystonians are staying on the sunny side during all this enforced me time…

So, we put the call out for people’s favourite thing about being indoors has been, and what kind of quarantine craic they’ve been getting up to.

Whether it’s getting a chance to catch up on books, podcasts, movies or boxed sets, tidying up a long-gestating mess, dusting down old board games, or just connecting with your loved ones. Every cloud has a silver lining, after all…

It’s all about staying positive, as we choose between staying six feet apart or six feet under.

Email your happy home thoughts to hello@greystonesguide.ie (include a pic too, if you can), and we’ll pull them all together for a little community inspiration…

Ruthie Spurling

Blissfully, we’re still pounding our secret Wicklow forest, where we’ve yet to meet another human!

Handily enough, Josh and I are total introverts – so, we’ve pretty much been preparing for this all our lives! We’ve also realized that we already have everything we need, which all makes us eternally grateful. For my ongoing mindfulness-based intervention studies, they’ve moved to daily Zoom meditation gatherings. Meditation is such a gift, bringing us back to the present moment whilst we navigate this somewhat surreal time – or “full catastrophe living”, as Jon Kabat Zinn refers to it. [Editor’s note: We think Jon Kabat Zinn might be Jon Bon Jovi’s spirit animal. Or his real name.]

Jessica & Sophie Barrie

We are aged 10 and 8, and like every other kid at home, starting to get bored! But here are a few things we have done so far that we really enjoyed.

My Dad did a really fun quiz for us last week that took us over 2 hours to do. We had to answer 40 questions and here are some examples – How many followers does Charli d’Amelio have on TikTok? What is the mileage on mummy’s car? How many windows are in Granny’s house (we had to call her to ask her this)? What is the width of our house? What is the value of Grafton Street in Monopoly?

It was really cool fun, as we had to call to our Granny’s, run around the house, measure things, and count things – so, lots of brain activity! We then read out our answers that evening after dinner to see who did the best. It was a draw!!

This afternoon, we are doing a scavenger hunt in our Granny and Grandad’s big garden. They have written a list of things for us to find and collect. It will be great to see them even if they are inside and we are outside. We really miss the hugs from them.

Our big treat last week was the Retro Drive-In Movie in Leopardstown; it was so exciting watching Mrs Doubtfire from the car. We had our duvets, pillows and snacks all packed and got front row position. We kicked Mummy & Daddy to the back seats, and we were in the front, in prime viewing position! We even met our cousins there, who we really miss. We just waved and said hello from the cars. A great idea for all the family as safe too, with social distancing.

So, so far, we’ve been having lots of fun

Siobhan Savoie

I am glad of the opportunity, worry aside, of recharging my previously very low batteries. I am trying my hand again at knitting and art now; I never seemed to find the extra time I needed before now. And finally, I can read for hours on end and not feel guilty about having to do other stuff! Oh, and then there is the time to cook and bake without keeping one eye on the clock, as I usually have to be somewhere else in the next half hour. So, living very much on the sunny side right now…

Paul Quinn 

We’ve just been chilling, really. Lots of walks. Cooking and eating together, which we would rarely do. The missus and the kids are doing this Joe Wicks PE class in the mornings on YouTube. One good thing that has come from having four kids is that they actually are never bored.

The best thing though is just watching kids being kids and coming up with their own fun. Kind of like the way we used to do.

Jodie Neary

What do I love most about the great indoors? All the colour and drawings my 5 year old twin girls have brought into the house. It’s hard to stay mad at them when they go against our No Drawing On The Walls rule as their work is so cute and colourful! Soon our house will look like a rainbow unicorn retreat.

Sinead Foley

If this pandemic has given me anything it’s a renewed sense of the power of a slower pace and a recognition of the beauty on my doorstep, but, indoors have taken a giant leap forward too. A self-confessed bookworm, it will probably horrify some people to know that Netflix just doesn’t do it for me. I am, I have to confess, a very failed TV addict.

Despite all those wonderful books, another revelation of all this time indoors is the opportunity to reconnect with people. I, for one, am very guilty of the “Yes, definitely next week… and if not the week after… or the week after that…” distinction of catch ups. Invariably, due to us all leading busy lives it just doesn’t always happen. We all might know what is going on in our loved one’s and friends’ lives, thanks to social media, but it is often a condensed version of facts. I’m a devoted fan of WhatsApp, but in many ways, it has killed real conversation. So, to counter this, in the past week, I’ve had many long, rambling chats with those near and far, and they have induced belly-aching laughs all round, each conversation ending with tears rolling down our faces. Gone is the old excuse of “I have to run…”, and that’s got to be one of the best things to come out of this awful crisis. Mirth can be found in the darkest of times, and for me, social reconnecting is at the heart of it.

Emma Nicolai

I use to wish the world would slow down a bit but this isn’t quiiiiiite what I meant.

Currently, I feel like I’m in some sort of limbo or germination period… though I may have been experiencing something similar to this before the pandemic as I’m a full-time student.

Now it’s more like working from home, or some kind of sabbatical due to procrastination without the discipline and drive I gain from being actually in college.

All worries aside, I am loving the sunshine, catching sunsets, resting, self-pampering, self-reflection, yoga, reiki and other holistic therapies I’m currently studying, plus, listening to records, dancing, playing musical instruments, writing songs, recording in my little home studio, practicing photography, cooking for enjoyment not just to be fed, reading, spending time with my dad and the dogs, watching the news, keeping in touch with my people… Oh, and the house is gleaming! I could go on.

It’s fair to say I am making good use of this isolation. It is what it is, but I’m also looking forward to going back out to gig and share the good times with people again!

Phelim Drew

This physical distancing and general staying home has been a challenge for all of us. No doubt. There is a constant underlying anxiety about work for the future, the effect of all this on the children, the pain of imagining the distress of those directly affected by the dreaded virus.

I have to say though being a glass half full type, for the most part, I’ve enjoyed getting my kids back. My older ones naturally want to spend more time with their friends and don’t tend to do stuff together as much. We’re getting out to exercise as a family, the children bouncing off each other wonderfully (mostly!) and enjoying each other, and hopefully, us. I’m hoping this will have a lasting effect on their relationship with each other and us. The missus, Sue, has been doing a Trojan job motivating the kids to do their school work while I’ve made sure we’re eating well.

The weather has been beautiful and I really feel that we are lucky this didn’t happen when there was a biting cold and shorter days. So, all in all, this period is being out the resourcefulness and strength in all of us. Fear and anxiety are alleviated by love, humour and music.

Kathleen Kelleher

I have just finished over two weeks of staying at home, and so far, so good; I am feeling well. Hope everyone else is as well.

Using the time at home to catch up on paperwork, tackling the huge pile of newspapers, organising and sorting photos that are clogging up my mobile phone.

Time now to catch up on gardening, enjoying the springtime; all the bulbs and flowering trees are now coming into bloom. It is just wonderful to watch them in the sunshine. And Ireland has plenty of good, fresh food, so, we won’t starve.

Big bonus is that there is plenty of time to reflect and think, giving us a bigger sense of gratitude to those who are helping to keep us safe. My task is simple; just stay home!

Morgan Ryan

I suppose our default is to be consumed by worry and gloom at a time like this. If we can sift through all of that though, there are some shimmering nuggets of positivity amongst the paydirt of problems that may just make our lives a little richer. All that we have to do is spend the time swirling. I can think of two benefits that the world of self-isolation has brought me. There is gold in them there isolated, respiratory infected, physically distanced hills.

In the pre-apocalyptic world I usually travelled from Co. Kildare to teach in Greystones every morning. M4. M50. M11. That’s a lot of Ms. Too many Ms. Too much stress. Too little sleep. So, instead of making sure that my dashcam is working and positioned correctly, in case some idiot cuts me off, and in lieu of the ankle grinding repetitiveness of accelerate – break – accelerate, I now have upwards of an hour every morning to do… well… whatever I want before I start teaching (remotely). I still drink coffee to wake me up but I need a little less. I also still grind my ankle but it’s a more tolerable and enjoyable grind, spent walking with my wife along a river, pushing our 6 month old in the buggy, with my faithful, yellow lab, Daisy, trotting beside us. That’s the sort of idealistic foundation that all days should be built on I think. Thank you, fair CoVid-19, for that gift.

Also, I’m a funny sort of chap who’s never fully able to relax until I have everything done that I feel I need to have done. Over the years of teaching, a lot of things that I wanted to get completed or felt that my students would benefit from (more comprehensive notes and such) have just not been possible to complete because, life. Not necessarily obligatory work. Moreso, the extra bits and pieces that would make me feel like I was very prepared as opposed to just prepared.The extra time that I’m gaining from not having to travel and not having the distractions of the outside world are forcing me to concentrate and complete these little, unnecessary flourishes. None of it is groundbreaking material but it’s a lot of little, insignificant tasks that will make life, post-apocalypse, that little bit easier and less stressful for me. Once again, “Sound, CoVid. Nice one!“.

Maurice Dodd

When I was 9 or 10, my father showed me some of his skills at carving, whittling, etc. He was a complete outdoor man and some of it rubbed off onto me, I guess.

Anyhoo, I thought I’d share my (rusty and amateurish) skills of stick-making with my girls (aged 7 and 12), seeing as we have so much time on our hands. By the way, I find this time spent with my girls amazing. What a silver lining for us to do things and spend time together while mom’s at work. They are great kids and coping so well with this crisis.

And don’t forget; how your kids see you cope now is how they will deal with crisis in their future!

Tune in next week where we learn to make fire with a bow drill.

Baz Dunne

Best thing about staying in during this quarantine shite…?

I’ve a Facebook group with 70 or so of my Leinster rugby supporter friends. Most of us are only on FB because of the craic we have on the page. Usually, it’s to chat bout all things rugby and how much we hate Munster!

But during this time, we’ve been having great fun doing top 5s of things like movies, bands, concerts, box sets, etc. The amount we’ve learned about things lots of us had in common that we never knew before is amazing, and the slagging some people have been getting and giving is brilliant. It has definitely brought us closer as friends and made us look forward more than ever to seeing each other again in the RDS, and in Paddy Cullen’s in Ballsbridge, when this all blows over.

Ann Teehan 

It’s been a loooong week!! With the 4 kids home, and both myself and Will off work for now, it can be kind of crazy, but you gotta look on the bright side or you’ll crack up!!

We’ve been forced to slow down and spend more time at home, all together. It’s made me realise that I was totally overdoing it; busy all the time, and missing out on the simple things with my family. Just playing with the kids, watching the girls’ funny dance performances, playing cards games, like Liar (formerly known as Bullsh*t!), family walks, and simply having a bounce on the trampoline with them.

We’re not big on routine in our house, but we’re kind of loosely falling into one! And with no bookwork here, we’ve lots of time for fun!!

Everyone says that time flies, and how, in the blink of an eye, our kids are all grown up!! This scary virus has given us a chance to press pause, whether we like it or not – so, I’m going to try to make the best out of it

You can check out some more groovy things to do during our Lockdown Lite right here, and here.

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