{SQT} Planning, Packing, and Promoting

No, we’re not on vacation yet, but as of today there’s only two more sleeps and then we’re off to quarantine in a different location!

1. Tomorrow we load up our trailer with most of our STUFF. Sunday morning all the remaining medical equipment, and cold food will get packed. I have one packing list (four pages long) for Fulton and Teddy, one for household/family items, and a mental list of items I need to pack for myself. Plus I’m writing a detailed list for our pet sitter. I’m assuming the older kids can reliably pack enough clean underwear on their own. It’s a lot to coordinate; things are bound to be forgotten, I’m just praying it’s things we can live without.

Considering we make 12+ hour trips to Wisconsin every few years, a 6+ hour trip to the Outer Banks sounds like a leisurely Sunday jaunt to the kids. We also got a working DVD player so there should be less yelling about the entertainment….in theory. I’ve also carefully hidden the “road snacks” from the kids so they can actually enjoy them on the drive. There’s just something about sitting still for hours on end that makes kids NEED to snack.

2. I did my grocery shopping for the trip at Aldi’s, which was my first trip there since quarantine started (10 weeks ago for us now). It’s further away from our house and since there were more severe shortages early on, I stuck to our local grocery store where I could usually get everything I needed in one big trip vs. risk needing a trip to a second store if I couldn’t get enough groceries at Aldi’s. But our grocery bill has been INSANE shopping at the local store so I thought I would try Aldi’s again and thankfully, they were fully stocked and I was able to get 98% of my supplies. I’ve heard stores in the OBX are low on some items, and visitors were encouraged to bring in whatever they needed so I planned out my full menu for the week (all meals, desserts, snacks- everything) with the hope we won’t need to do more than order some take out a few nights while we’re there. To keep things easy, I planned a lot of fun/ convenience meals I wouldn’t normally do all together in one week, so as I loaded up the conveyor belt to check out, I started laughing because it was pretty much the most unhealthy cart of groceries I’d ever purchased. If anyone was watching, they’d think I was going home to a house of type II diabetes and hypertension. Of course, when I got home everyone was excited and wanted to tear into everything immediately and I had to beat them off with sticks. Hopefully, all our vacation fun will burn off or cancel out all the fatty calories. We might also spend July doing a Whole 30- who knows!

3. I forgot to mention last week one of the other reasons we decided on a quarantine vacation was because we learned a couple weeks ago that not only was MDA camp cancelled, but Camp Fatima, the other camp I applied to for Fulton and Teddy to attend in August, was cancelled. Womp. Womp. Back to forgetting about all that disappointment…

4. We’ll still technically have two weeks of school to wrap up when we get back. On one hand I’m excited to be done with “distance learning”, but on the other, a big wide open summer of being at home isn’t super exciting either. I’m hoping we can maybe get together with friends by July?? Maybe??? But until then, even though I’ve always made fun of summer schedules, I think I will need to figure something out to keep everyone from going nuts. I will probably continue with some school review stuff (math for Edie, reading for Fulton), but otherwise, I need to sit down post-OBX and formulate a summer plan beyond “sit in kiddie pool alone with margarita”, thought that’s a good place to start.

5. If you are homeschooling (like, by choice) and need help evaluating your 2019-20 school year I have resources here and here. If your descent into distance learning has you curious about actual homeschooling, check my archives and let me know if you have any specific questions I can answer. I know most people want to send their kids back to school in the fall, but I also know some who’ve enjoyed this foray into quasi-homeschooling or who know that switching to homeschooling, and the flexibility it offers, would be easier than another year of distance learning (should that happen). I can also offer opinions on what typical online homeschool classes look like vs. the Zoom classes everyone is relying on now, to help you decide if that’s a route you’d like to take. So leave a comment or shoot me a message if there’s something you’re curious about.

6. I did some redesign work to the ‘Accepting the Gift’ website. I hope it’s a lot easier for folks to sign up for our newsletter, join our support group, and find valuable resources. We’ve got a growing national directory (sorted by state and diocese) that we’re hoping to fill out over the coming months with diocesan and lay run groups and ministries, plus a calendar of events, which is obviously empty for the foreseeable future. I’ve got a great team of contributors behind the scenes, but I’d love to bring on more writers, moderators, and team members! If you’d like to help out with an apostolate that is dedicated to bringing hope and support to Catholic special needs parents, please let me know!!

7. Last week I mentioned the Gardening and Sustainable Living Bundle just in case anyone was interested, but tons of you clicked through to learn more according to my stats. (Some of y’all are itching for chickens and it shows.) The bundle sale ends at midnight tonight (Friday, May 22) if you want to pick up a copy before it’s too late. And if you want to read more about the failed homesteading I alluded to, here ya go!

How was your week? Write it down then link it up below. Be sure to include a link back to this post so your readers can find the rest of the Quick Takes! I look forward to reading your posts!

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