7 Things to Do While Social Distancing

Cats don't understand how distancing works

Many of us in the US are going into our second week of quarantine / social distancing.  Places we normally go aren’t open.  And you can only binge so much streaming movies and tv.  What else is there to do?  As someone who normally spends her time socially distancing, I have a few suggestions.


1. Read Books

Of course, this will be my number one.  My local library, although physically closed, still has their online lending of ebooks available.  Check your local library system for similar programs.

Baen Books has a free library.

Smashwords is offering discounts on ebooks via their Author Gives Back program.

And, all my ebooks are free on Smashwords through 30 April 2020.  Use coupon code NK58T


2. Play Video Games

Use this time to start a new game or finish old games.  Spend countless hours on games like Skyrim doing favor quests so you can become Thane of each hold or picking every ingredient to make a potion you won’t use.  I’m partial to Borderlands 3 where I can shoot countless baddies and loot all the guns, although I religiously only use six.

If looter shooters aren’t your thing, there are games like Civilization VI that make you strategize to grow and thrive your people.  If you want to play with others, there are MMOs such as Elder Scrolls Online and Lord of the Rings Online.  If you want a game without NPCs only other players, Planetside 2 just had a big update and my brother says that it made the game better.

Now, if you are susceptible to motion sickness like I am, I don’t recommend LOTR Online.  I tried it today and had to stop while going through a mine.  All of the others I mentioned above are problem free as long as you tweak the options to lower the mouse sensitivity.

Steam has a bunch of games that are free through April.


3. Board Games

Apparently, board games are still a thing.  If you’re like me and find that no one in your family has ever thrown away a thing, you may find a few.  We found a bunch in boxes and placed them on shelves in the attic.  Growing up, we played them all the time.  My favorite was Scattegories.  But, I like words.  I absolutely abhorred Sorry and to this day, I refuse to play it.  Tabletop games also fall under the board game category as far as I’m concerned.  My husband still has some of the rulebooks and die around.


4. Playing Cards

We always had at least one deck of cards in the house.  And always in the kitchen junk drawer.  Believe it or not, a deck of cards can be used to play games other than poker.  Rummy, gin, gin rummy.  Those sound like drinking games—they’re not.  Spades, hearts, bullshit, old maid, go fish.  All of these can be played regardless of age.  All alone with a deck?  There’s always solitaire.  People played that with real cards before the computer game.


5. Cleaning / Organizing

When not reading or playing games, we can take this time to clean or organize our spaces.  You don’t need any special types of cleaners.  Old rags and basic dish soap and water will do.  I use that for pretty much everything from furniture to walls and trim to windows.

Organize that junk drawer.  Or all those wires that we all still need regardless of how wireless everything gets.


6. Household Projects

Some projects require expertise and specialized equipment.  Others don’t.  You know those projects you bought all the stuff to do it and never got around to actually doing?  Now’s the time.

Me?  I’ve put up curtains in two rooms.  I found those curtains because, well, I explained that whole thing in the board game section.  The hardware was there.  I figured why not.  I have plans of putting up more in a couple of more rooms as long as I can find the hardware.  Not making a special hardware purchasing trip.  Curtains aren’t that important.


7. Cook / Bake

Try the recipe or ingredient or whatever it was you bought that is sitting in your pantry or fridge waiting to be used.  Captive families make the best guinea pigs.  Since I have some buttermilk, I’m going to try making biscuits using home rendered lard.  I already make them with store bought lard.  Sounds like fun.

If you’re looking for a yummy chocolate recipe, I highly recommend Fudgy Pudding Cake.  This recipe tastes like childhood.


Bonus:

Tap into your creative-ness.  Music, painting, drawing, writing, sewing, knitting, crafting, et cetera.

Don’t forget to peer suspiciously out your windows from time to time.  And if your weather cooperates, go for a walk so that your neighbors can peer at you.

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