COVID-19 3/26

It’s official: Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine has ordered Ohioans to stay at home until April 6 -- when the situation will be further evaluated. Although DeWine said it shouldn’t be much of a change from previous Ohio Department of Health guidelines, being stuck at home can be boring.


Here’s a list of things to do while in quarantine.


Start a new hobby

If you’ve ever thought about learning an instrument, taking up painting, writing a poem or learning a new language, now is the time to try it. Since there’s so much free time for a lot of people, learning new skills can definitely come in handy. After the quarantine is over, you can show off your new talent and mark a new hobby off your I've-always-wanted-to-try-that list. 


Create a list

I’ve started creating lists to help create a more organized environment. Every day I’ll create a new list of things I want to get done for the day, and check them off as I go. This allows me to feel accomplished and not lazy during the time I’m stuck in the house. Conversely, you can make a list of what you want do once quarantine is over. The first thing on my list is going to my favorite sushi place and ordering as much as I can possibly eat. 


Build a board game

There are so many board games out there, but sometimes playing them over and over again can get boring. One way to spice up a game is adding your own twist to traditional games. Add a card game to the game of Life, or add dice to a game of Uno. Make up your own rules, or even make a whole new game if you want to get creative. 


Play childhood video games

This has become my new obsession. I’ve started playing my childhood computer games again -- such as Club Penguin and Webkinz. Right now, Club Penguin is offering a free membership, and Webkinz also offers a free pet for those who don’t want to pay for a deluxe membership. I’ve also seen a lot of people get out their old gaming devices -- such as a Nintendo DS or a GameCube. As silly as it sounds, it’s been super enjoyable playing the games, and doing the missions I used to do as a child. For me, it creates a sense of control since so many things have been taken away due to quarantine. 


Make an ecosphere

If you have a backyard, you can make a cool ecosphere. This can also help you get fresh air, and a break from sitting inside the house all day. An ecosphere is a self-sustaining environment built out of things that can be found pretty much anywhere. Start out with a clean container -- I used a big canning jar -- and go out and get some soil or substrate. Gather twigs, moss, stones and other plants. If you have access to a stream or distilled water, gather that as well (although it’s not necessary). After you’ve gathered all your supplies, you can set it up in the jar. For mine, I put the substrate on the bottom, followed by the rocks and twigs, moss, leaves and any other plants. Lastly, add the water if you have any. If you don’t have any water, you can just keep it dry. After a couple days, you should be able to see the plants grow along with all the organisms. Be sure to open the lid for ten minutes a day to allow the plants to photosynthesize and leave them in an area where there’s sunlight. Not only will the ecosphere grow over time, but it will also help give a little bit of outside life without going outside


Clean and organize

Recently, I’ve started going through my closet and packing up clothes I don’t wear anymore to donate after quarantine. This is something I haven’t done in years. Cleaning and organizing always makes me feel a little bit better. It also stops me from feeling claustrophobic -- a feeling that can be hard to ignore when being cooped up at home. Try cleaning or organizing a closet that hasn’t gotten attention in a while, or go through and get rid of stuff you haven’t used in a while. 


Have a movie marathon

If you’ve ever wanted to watch all of the Harry Potter or Star Wars movies, now’s the time to do it. Sit down with your favorite quarantine snacks, and see how many movies you can finish. Maybe even take note of aspects in movies you’ve seen already that you never noticed before. 



Even though gyms are closed, there are millions of workouts that can be completed at home. There are multiple apps and videos that show different things you can do from home to help with physical activity. Get out old equipment that you haven’t used in years, or use the workout equipment you bought for an at home gym. I tend to use apps such as Simple Habit for meditation and Yoga -- which gives me daily yoga classes for free. These apps also allow you to choose workouts you want to do such as abs, arms or, of course, leg day. 


Try a new look

Now’s the time to try out that makeup you’ve always been too scared to model or try out that hairstyle you’ve always wanted. Although I don’t advise cutting your hair, now’s the time more than ever since not a lot of people will be seeing you. Who knows? Maybe you’ll figure out that you look great with bangs or dyed hair.


Online shopping

This is something that I’ve been doing a lot of, and my bank account is very angry at me for it. When I online shop, however, it’s like receiving little gifts for myself when the packages arrive. It always puts me in a way better mood. Most recently, I’ve purchased a gel manicure set so I can do my own manicures since nail places are closed.


Look on the bright side

Even though it feels as though things are being turned upside down for us and there are so many changes, it’s important to stay positive during this time. Although we have to create a new normal for ourselves, it’s important to know that not all of this has to be negative. Good things can come out of bad situations.


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