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10 Things I’ve Found Useful During Covid

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  1. The Fanny Pack is back! I use my fanny pack daily to clean/organize my house while I listen to a podcast.  My phone fits in perfectly.  You can go on amazon and get a good one for around $13.00. Here is a picture of one. Some suggested podcast:

    -Crime Junkie: If you like Dateline or 20/20 murder mysteries, you will enojoy this.

    -Dateline: If you haven’t seen every Dateline, I suggest this podcast. They take episodes and adapt them to podcasts.

    -Modern Love: They did an Amazon series based on this podcast with famous stars. If you haven’t seen it, go to Amazon Prime and watch it. It’s really good. They have a podcast where people submit their love stories. The ones during Covid are interesting.

    -Planet Money: These are short and to the point. They have some interesting topics.

    -New York Daily: The New York Times puts out a daily podcast on various topics. Some of them are very interesting.  Listen to the one about the New York hospital during Covid.

    -If you haven’t already listened to (Doctor Death, Dirty John, S Town)

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2. Chalk Paint is super easy: I have tried to chalk paint before but it is hard and my stuff I have done looks so bad. My mom recently gave me an outdated beverage cart and old metal side table. I have self diagnosed myself with ADD so the thought of having to prep and item properly (sand,etc) makes my skin crawl. This paint was perfect because I cleaned the pieces and just painted. They turned out looking really good!  I bought the paint at Walmart.  I did two pieces with the blue paint but still have a ton left to do several other pieces.

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3.Easy recipes:
Breakfast: Put a piece of toast in the toaster. Boil water. When the water starts boiling, put two eggs in it and set your timer for five minutes. After five minutes, take out the egg and peel it. Cut up the toast and mix it with the egg. Add salt and pepper. Side note: My kids think that the egg cooker is a game changer. You can get them on amazon for around 15.00. My girls use it every day.

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Dinner: Crawfish Etouffee: Courtesy of Stephanie Hebert Chavez: Get a half stick of butter and cook a bag of pictsweet seasoning blend (found in the frozen section of our grocery store: it is onions, cucumbers, and bell peppers). Add a can of cream of mushrooms soup and a can of celery to the mix (I use low fat). Add Tony’s seasoning and crawfish tails. Serve over rice.

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Dessert: Amy’s Famous Cake: Courtesy of Amy Brandt: This will make anyone’s day better
1 Box of Devil’s Food Cake Mix
1 Small Box of Instant Chocolate Pudding
5 Eggs
1 Cup of Melted Butter
2 Cups of Sour Cream
1 Teaspoon of Almond Extract
2 Cups of Chocolate Chips
Powdered Sugar: For topping after cake is baked
Mix ingredients and pour in a Bundt cake pan: Bake at 350 for 55 minutes:
Sprinkle powder sugar on tops

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4. Grandparents can read to grandkids! This idea is courtesy of Lindsey Havel. My mother Zoomed with my kids and read them Shell Silverstein”s, Where the Sidewalk Ends. My six year old is starting to read books. My mother in law ordered a set of the Magic School Bus books for herself and for Charlotte. They zoom every few days and they take turns reading the books.

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5. Costco Wine is the REAL DEAL. I first discovered Costco boxed Kirkland Cabernet Sauvignon. It was $12.99 for four bottles of wine and tasted really good. I was super excited to see they now have the Kirkland Pinot Grigio. It is really good! You can’t beat good $3.00 wine!! Side note:  I have heard that very reputable vineyards in California produce the Costco Kirkland brand wine.  Costco, if you read this, know we love your wine!

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6. Online learning is not what I thought it would be: I taught middle and high school for twelve years. In my mind, I felt like school would eventually turn mostly online. With the advancement in technology, it only seemed logical that this would be the future. When I did my Master’s Degree eight years ago, half of it was online and the other half  was in person. I really enjoyed my in person classes because I was able to connect with other teachers in my field. I also liked the online portion of it because it meant I could do my school work while my kids were sleeping. Fast forward to Covid. I now believe that many of us who felt like online learning was great now realize that many kids and adults  need that in person learning.  Only one of our family members enjoyed the online schooling, my Senior Will who is a gamer. The rest of the kids hated it. My daughter had to stop her nursing clinical rotations and finish up her nursing degree online. It is not the same as in person training. I think that most of my friends would agree that we hate online school and homeschooling. I ended up being the worst home school teacher and being a major slacker. Sometimes I had to go to doctor’s appointments and my husband would jungle sorting out the first grade work and his own work. Side note. Ms. Sanders, thank you for not judging me and making me feel like a loser.

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7. My washing machine is the best thing since sliced bread: My washing machine died at the beginning of Covid. We bought this one and it is AMAZING.  It can probably hold four loads of laundry.  I have to have a stool to get clothes out of it because it is that big!

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8. We are obsessed with our air fryer. My mother and father in law bought us a Paula Deen air fryer a few years ago. Every once in a while we pull it out and use it. When we do, it is amazing. We just forget about it. Fast forward to Covid. Abbey and Allison are obsessed with the air fryer and use it almost every day. Their specialty is taking sweet potatoes and dicing them. Rub olive oil on them and throw them in the air fryer. Salt to taste. HINT: The larger the air fryer, the better.

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9. Signs are helpful: I bought two signs at Hobby Lobby at the beginning of Covid. The first one is a sign that you can change the sayings. I try to put different things every few days. The other day it said “Are you addicted to Tik Tok? Yes or No?” The second sign is a days of the week sign. We need a person to be assigned daily to empty our dishwasher since we run it on average twice a day. All seven of us hate emptying it so we have to assign people for a different day.

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10. Supply and Demand is Real: Puzzles: Before Covid, puzzles were plentiful and cheap. After Covid, the price of puzzles skyrocketed and the ability to get them decreased. We have put several together. We actually had a few dollar store ones that we pulled out and put together.

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My question for you is this: What have you learned during Covid?

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