March 27, 2020

Beating the Quarantine Blues


Hi friends, we hope this post finds you in good health!

Are you getting a little stir crazy? We feel you. We all are. It’s been a long few weeks since the shelter in place orders started and we’ve got a while to go. Instead of focusing on what we’re missing out on during this time, we want to give you suggestions for fun things to do without leaving the house so you can beat the quarantine blues.

It’s important to do our best to stay healthy while still maintaining our mental health during these uncertain times. Sometimes it doesn’t feel as if those two go hand in hand, so we’ve come up with some out of the box ideas to improve your mental health during quarantine.

1) Decorate Your House (to Share with Others)

Create an art display in your windows for passersby to enjoy. While this could really be anything that strikes your fancy, there are Facebook groups popping up dedicated specifically to decorations made out of paper hearts. What a sweet way to spread love in your community, say thank you to essential workers, and show off your creative side! Check out #aworldofhearts on Facebook for inspiration. There are some amazing artists out there!

Need a little more adventure? Initiate a neighborhood-wide scavenger hunt or “bear hunt”. Invite neighbors to place certain items in their windows and on their porches for children to search for. This is a great way to stay connected to your community while maintaining a safe social distance. It also temporarily gets you out of the house and into the sunshine so it’s a win-win!

Coronavirus bear hunt

2) Write it Out

Doesn’t this seem like the perfect time to bring back pen pals? And with social distancing, it doesn’t have to be someone who lives far away. Anyone outside of your household will do! This could be a great way to keep in touch with elderly family and neighbors. Who doesn’t love receiving a handwritten note in the mail? If you send us one, you may just get a reply with a little something special included!

Bonus: Use letter writing as a lesson for kids at home from school. Have them write to friends from school, grandparents that they are missing or even just a neighbor. Teach them how to address a letter and mail it….then wait for a response!

3) Reach Out to a Friend

While it’s easy to feel alone right now, technology assures that we are easily connected. It can be a quick hello text to check-in, a weekly catch up phone call or even an afternoon of virtual fun & games. Stay connected near & far!

Missing your coworkers? Set up a Microsoft Teams or Zoom virtual meeting or coffee date. Can’t meet with your book club or friends for a happy hour in person? Do it virtually! There are so many ways to connect that no one should feel alone during these trying times.

COVID-19 Zoom Call

4) Take Up a Hobby

We finally have the time to do the things we always wanted to try! So break out the crochet hook you bought years ago or the abandoned cross stitch that you never finished. Still have that set of stamps and paper for card making but not sure where to start? Youtube a tutorial and get to work! You can also share your creations with others to spread joy or get a headstart on those holiday gifts.

Rock painting is all the rage right now and groups are popping up across the country. The Kindness Rocks Project is one of those wonderful groups and they encourage people to leave rocks painted with inspiring messages around their community for others to keep, leave or rehide. Personally, we have found a couple of rocks in our community and can attest to the joy they bring to others. So we encourage you to gather your paint supplies and spread happiness! You can find your local rock painting groups on Facebook where you can share photos of your creations as well as rocks you find in your community.

Crafting not your thing? Consider propagating cuttings from a houseplant to gift once this is over or use up some leftover paint on a piece of furniture that needs a facelift. Chances are there’s an abandoned project somewhere in your home so make good use of this gift of time we have all been given.

5) Sew a Face Mask

Dust off the sewing machine and try your hand at making a face mask. The CDC now recommends that everyone cover their face while out in public to limit exposure to COVID-19. In addition, hospitals, nursing homes and agencies around the country are asking for donations of cloth masks. Other essential employees like those that work in grocery stores, delivery companies, restaurants and the like would also greatly appreciate the donation of a mask or two.

There’s an abundance of patterns and tutorials circulating online about facemask making. Find one that works for your sewing ability (and supplies) and give it a go! There are even no-sew masks if you are in a bind and need to protect yourself during a trip to the grocery store.

PPE face masks

6) Cook a New Dish

With restaurants closed and take out/delivery options limited, cooking is a must for us to stay nourished and healthy. Even if you don’t consider yourself Julia Child or Ina Garten, preparing a meal shouldn’t be a chore and there are actually emotional benefits to cooking. We’re sharing a couple of our favorite recipes to get you started so put on an apron, open a bottle of wine, and explore your kitchen!

Some of Barri’s favs:

Some of Lanna’s favs:

Don’t forget about dessert! We love a good Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake (yummo!)

7) Play a Game

One of our favorite pastimes — games! Playing a game is a great way to spend the day and they keep your mind off the scary things in the world today. It is also an excellent way to engage with others and keep your brain active. Whether this is a family game night, interactive digital game or crossword puzzle, playing a game will keep you busy and focused.

If you live alone, you may think this one doesn’t apply to you. Not the case! Thanks to technological advances, there are many ways to play games online with friends and family. Games such as Words with Friends, chess, and many card games can be played right on your phone. Certain gaming consoles also connect players together.

Not into game play? Try relieving some tension by breaking out the coloring book or jigsaw puzzle you received for Christmas or your birthday. You can even take your art outside with some sidewalk chalk fun or have a scavenger hunt in your backyard!

Coronavirus activities

Here at Beyond the Box Interiors, we are taking all recommendations for social distancing very seriously. We hope you are staying healthy, staying inside, and doing your part to stop the spread of coronavirus.

We’d love to hear from you! Please follow and engage with us on Facebook and Instagram. On our Design Discussions group, we encourage you to post pictures of the art you create, dinners served, games played, and all the ways you are spending quarantine. We are all in this together!

And (as always) Happy Designing!

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