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A Lockdown Update

"No rain, no flowers." - unknown

Photo by Humans in Melbourne, on Facebook

I'm not sure why I haven't thought of writing a little lockdown update before, other than that I never thought that we'd be heading towards the end or 2021 still in the midst of this pandemic. I'm not sure if that was wishful thinking, denial or delusion. Anyhow, here we are again in lockdown number who-knows-what & I thought it might be timely to give you a little update now.

Your orders

I want you to know that your orders are coming from a safe environment

I am the only person who touches the fabrics. I am the only person who packs the parcels. I am a one woman business & it is me alone who processes your orders. I am fully immunised & as I am categorised as higher risk, I have become quite the homebody - no grocery shopping, no social contact, & therefore, near to zero contact with people outside my household (who are both fully immunised also). I now also have the hands of an 80 year old due to my regular hand washing & sanitising. So, in a nutshell, I want you to know that your orders are coming from a safe environment.

Australia Post

Yes, there are some shipping delays at present...

As always, any orders received by 2pm Monday to Friday will be posted that same day. Yes, there are some shipping delays at present. Please allow a couple of extra days for parcels to arrive during this time. Due to the increased volume of online orders Australia Post is not currently able to guarantee next day delivery for Express Post. Express Post parcels will definitely arrive quicker, but they may take a little longer than usual. If you'd like your parcel as quickly as possible I would suggest opting for Express Post. To give you a guideline of current delays, you can check the Australia Post website here.

And finally...

Sunnier Days Ahead

Know that there will be sunnier days ahead. Yes, these are challenging, difficult times. Yes, I am over lockdown too. I miss my family. I miss going to the movies, art galleries, football & book stores. I miss meeting those I love for coffee & cake in our city's laneway cafes. I miss spontaneous trips to the beach & planning holidays. And I am pining for a European holiday. But this is where we are at right now, & accepting that it is so makes life just a bit easier for now. As someone who manages anxiety & knows life through the filter of depression, there are some things that have helped me through these challenging months. It is not a one size fits all situation, so I don't presume to know what will work for you, but these are some of the things that work for me:

  • limiting my time on social media (I set a daily time limit in my phone settings)

  • unfollowing unhelpful people/accounts (the ones that heighten your worries, that annoy you, that don't resonate with who you are & your values)

  • following more helpful, uplifting accounts (the ones that encourage you, that offer helpful reminders & insight, that inspire your creativity - some of my current favourites: @emilycoxhead @stacieswift @themindgeek @jaynehardy_ & @odilebailloeul

  • less coffee on the days where I feel more antsy

  • more water, more peppermint tea

  • trying to get outside for a bit, each day (a neighbourhood walk, some time in the garden, taking my tea & a book outside for a break)

  • more creativity - hand stitching for the evenings is essential (I've just started a Kaffe Fassett tapestry, my first ever); more quiltmaking, whenever I feel like it; reading through my collection of Kaffe Fassett books (I'm currently enjoying 'Kaffe Fassett in the Studio'); & keeping a grid notebook nearby for doodling quilt ideas

  • music, podcasts & Netflix as background noise while I'm cutting, sewing, cleaning, cooking etc. - this keeps my brain chatter a little quieter, makes mundane tasks a bit more fun & allows me to stay in the moment more (I'm currently listening to Glennon Doyle's 'We Can Do Hard Things' podcast & re-watching my favourite Gilmore Girls for the umpteenth time)

  • meditation (I use the Calm app & often just the Daily Calm, which is less than 10 minutes helps quieten my brain. If you have Spotify you might like to look up Dr Sarah Edelman for longer meditations & breathing exercises also)

  • journalling (getting all of the thoughts out of my brain & onto paper often helps me to see how much of it is unhelpful & out of my control, so I can see what to let go of & what I need to tend to)

  • routine (getting up at the same time, going to bed at the same time, having some structure & a plan for each day rather than just bumbling along all help this feel less like lockdown & more like something normal)

  • click & collect grocery orders (these have been a game changer - I can shop in my pj's, enjoy contactless pick-up, know that the fridge is full & meals planned for the week)

  • using FaceTime to stay in touch with our daughter who is outside of our travel limit (we wash our dishes together most nights & recap our day, & at the weekend we play board games & watch our favourite TV shows together (Australian Survivor & the F1's at the moment)

  • being selective about what I watch & read - very little news (what I need I get from asking my family for updates); very little action (I just don't need to see or hear the graphic stuff); easy, fluff bedtime reading; & working my way through some learning type books (I'm currently enjoying 'Body Kindness' by Rebecca Scritchfield

  • & as corny as it sounds, I try to remember to look out at my surroundings - particularly the sky & changing seasons, which remind me that this is a big, beautiful world that continues on unhindered by COVID-19, & it will continue on long after life settles down. This will pass, & there will be sunnier days ahead.

Artwork by @emilycoxhead on Instagram

From These Clever Hands, to yours...

Jo xo

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