D is for Disney+ #AtoZChallenge #PandemicAlphabet

Okay, okay, okay. I know this is cheating, kind of. Can a WHOLE streaming service be a comfort watch?

I think we all know the answer to that is yes.

I mean, it’s DISNEY. All the princess movies are on there, almost all of the Marvel movies and cartoons, almost all of the DCOMs (Disney Channel Original Movies), a bunch of movies you probably forgot that you watched as a kid, and a bunch of Star Wars stuff. Plus, Hamilton! (Also, National Geographic, if you’re into that kind of stuff.)

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C is for Columbo #AotZChallenge #PandemicAlphabet

I need justice or joy today.

A friend in a group text, describing her quest to find something to watch on TV

I think my friend’s quote perfectly sums up what many of us need during uncertain and troubling times such as a global pandemic. I tend to lean more toward joy because I want to laugh or at least not be stressed out by what I’m watching. But sometimes when the world is overwhelming, I also need justice. I need to know that the good guys are going to win and the bad guys are going to lose, and during the pandemic, I have found that nothing has filled my need for justice like watching Columbo.

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B is for The Baby-Sitters Club #AtoZChallenge #PandemicAlphabet

Just like with yesterday’s post about Anne of Green Gables, you may be wondering if when I say The Baby-Sitters Club is a perfect comfort for these here pandemic times, do I mean the Netflix show that came out last year, the classic book series, or even the graphic novels that were first published in 2006?

And the answer, once again, would be yes. Of course I mean all of those things.

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A is for Anne of Green Gables #AtoZChallenge #PandemicAlphabet

I could not for the life of me figure out what to write about for this year’s Blogging from A to Z Challenge, though I got some very good suggestions from friends (bucket list, books, pop culture, things you would want on a deserted island). I didn’t want to rehash topics I have done before, but I also couldn’t think of new topics either–or enough things to fill the topic suggestions. Everything just seemed so overwhelming, and I realized that all I wanted to do was NOT and just sit on the couch and watch TV or something and then *boom* my topic was so obvious: comfort watches and reads for these here pandemic times. This topic also seemed like a good fit because last year I did devote one of my blog posts to book recommendations, so this seems like the perfect time to do a blend of books and visual media as well as a deep dive into why I would recommend the things I do.

One of the other struggles I had with the suggested topics was that I couldn’t come up with anything for A. When I was doing some light journaling to figure out what I might write about for comfort watches/reads that would start with A–because SERIOUSLY WHAT ON EARTH STARTS WITH A–my brain literally went “Anne of Green Gables, duh,” and honestly, if it could pull the perfection that is Anne of Green Gables out of the ether, then the rest of the challenge is going to have to be easy breezy, right?

I like to think so.

“Akilah,” you may be thinking, “when you say Anne of Green Gables, are you talking about the fantastic book by L. M. Montgomery or the fantastic movie starring Megan Follows?”

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V is for Vaccine #PandemicAlphabet #SOL21

It started with a group text.

There I was, up at 1 a.m. doing who knows what (scrolling a social media site, most likely) when my phone lit up with a notification. It was one of my co-workers sharing that the communications person from our school had just sent out information about available vaccines.

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A is for Anniversary #PandemicAlphabet

You know I have tried to write this post a bunch of times and a bunch of different ways, so I think I am going to stop trying to be profound and deep and just be honest.

One year ago today I started social distancing in earnest, a day before I believe the statewide Safer-at-Home lockdown began. There are a lot of things I miss about The Before Times. I miss going to the gym and the movies and hanging out with friends. I miss seeing my students in an actual classroom and going places other than the store.

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B is for Best Buys #AMonthofFaves #PandemicAlphabet

I’m still participating in A Month of Faves. It’s still being hosted by Tanya and Kim at Girlxoxo with prompts up on Kim’s Instagram.

a-month-of-faves-2020

⭐ DEC 7 – Favorite Products/Small Shops⁠
(Favorite small business, mug, bookmark, bookish clothing, blanket, anything you purchased in 2020 that you love)⁠

Work from Home

Okay, basically everything I bought that I love this year was to improve my work from home situation.

wfh setup

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H is for Half of What You See #PandemicAlphabet

I grew up watching soap operas, and one of the biggest tropes in soaps (yes, I see what I did there) is that Character A sees Character B in a compromising–or shall we even say, less than flattering–position/situation. This typically leads to lots of misunderstandings and, of course, amps up the drama. One of my mom’s favorite refrains when we would watch these shows was always “Believe half of what you see.” She would say it almost every time. Because the truth in those situations was almost always somewhere in the middle as we viewers knew. Half of what Character A saw was true; the other half was usually filled in by what they thought they knew.

I’ve been thinking about this a lot during COVID-19, especially in this age of social media where people often post pictures or videos online. I have Very Strong Opinions about what is and is not acceptable behavior, especially as the number of COVID cases keep rising and more and more people keep dying. I protest what I believe is inappropriate behavior mostly by not liking posts/pictures that make me uncomfortable and by making snide comments to my phone or computer in the privacy of my own home.

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F is for Flight #PandemicAlphabet

I decided to leave California.

If you’ve been following the news, you know the wildfires are very intense there, and the air quality is terrible. The one closest to me–the Bobcat Fire–caused smoke bad enough that several friends of mine in a neighboring city were put under an evacuation warning last Wednesday night, and my job closed the campus last Thursday. Because I am an idiot (no, really this time), even after getting the alert that my job (which is down the street from my house) was closed because of extremely poor air quality, I still attempted to go to the pool. I wound up lasting all of ten minutes before I started coughing because, you know, the smoke was so bad. Oh, and Thursday night, my city was also put under an evacuation warning, though it was for the northern part of the city closer to the mountains.

On Thursday night, I finally packed my evacuation bag.

On Friday morning, I could smell the smoke in my apartment, so immediately ordered an air purifier on Amazon to be delivered the next day (they were sold out locally).

By Friday afternoon, I had booked a plane ticket for Sunday to Tennessee with plans to stay there for two weeks and then to drive to Florida and stay for two to three more weeks. My return flight is currently booked for five weeks from now.

Here’s what got me to decide to leave:

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W is for Water Aerobics #PandemicAlphabet

At the beginning of the pandemic, the Y closed, which was pretty bad, obviously, since as mentioned in previous entries, I was going to the gym 3-4 times per week for water aerobics and/or yoga and/or step aerobics (which I had recently decided to get back into because I figured I needed to do some actual exercise on land since gravity doesn’t care if you spend all of your time in the water when it’s time to reckon with moving your body on land). So, yes, I had a pretty good routine going, and I was bummed about the closing, but I decided to make the most of it and do the deal and start walking. And walking was (is!) great, really, but, you know, not the same as getting in the pool or even doing some more aerobic land exercises.

The thing is I’m pretty terrible at personal accountability when it comes to exercise on my own. The lack of structure means I can do it whenever I want, but whenever I want turns into the next day and then the next day and then the next day. I get bored easily when I work out by myself because every exercise feels like it takes a long time, so even though I intend to do an hour, I wind up just doing twenty minutes…if that. Also, the furniture is in the way and sometimes my XBox doesn’t load and on and on it goes.

Continue reading “W is for Water Aerobics #PandemicAlphabet”

At the beginning of the pandemic, the Y closed, which was pretty bad, obviously, since as mentioned in previous entries, I was going to the gym 3-4 times per week for water aerobics and/or yoga and/or step aerobics (which I had recently decided to get back into because I figured I needed to do some actual exercise on land since gravity doesn’t care if you spend all of your time in the water when it’s time to reckon with moving your body on land). So, yes, I had a pretty good routine going, and I was bummed about the closing, but I decided to make the most of it and do the deal and start walking. And walking was (is!) great, really, but, you know, not the same as getting in the pool or even doing some more aerobic land exercises.

The thing is I’m pretty terrible at personal accountability when it comes to exercise on my own. The lack of structure means I can do it whenever I want, but whenever I want turns into the next day and then the next day and then the next day. I get bored easily when I work out by myself because every exercise feels like it takes a long time, so even though I intend to do an hour, I wind up just doing twenty minutes…if that. Also, the furniture is in the way and sometimes my XBox doesn’t load and on and on it goes.

Continue reading “W is for Water Aerobics #PandemicAlphabet”