During the past year...
|We stayed home a lot
Needless to say it's been an unusual year. We had a couple of our usual activities at the beginning of the year before Ohio instituted the stay at home order in mid-March. Cheryl and Bob both ended up home officing. Cheryl had been sent home first, so staked out the upstairs office. Bob chose to set up in the basement and got to teach from a galaxy far, far away amongst all his action figures. About a month into the experience, the upstairs office got rearranged to put the desk in front of the window, so a lot of backyard wildlife watching got to happen this year - deer, squirrels, groundhogs, rabbits, birds, and stray cats.
|Just a Few Trips to the Theater
Music, Song and Dance
Normally almost every weekend would see a concert or show somewhere. We managed two Broadway Across America in Columbus shows (Jersey Boys and Anastasia), Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire in Concert, and a Newark-Granville Symphony Orchestra concert before the shutdown. We've streamed a few concerts and watched some Broadway on PBS, but nothing matches live theater.
During Bob's winter break in February, Cheryl took a day of vacation an we visited COSI in Columbus. It has been years and many of the exhibits were familiar. One of the special exhibits was super heroes, so we made sure to do a quick tour.
Instead of Origins and Bob Con, we had lots of gaming for two. The current streak of at least one game per day is 129 and counting. We have played 462 games are on track to play at least 500 games during the year (at least 216 unique - but still not managing everything in our collection). We played games from A to Z, then Z to A, a Ticket to Ride Marathon, Fluxx marathon and other ways to make it more entertaining.
Lots of walks through the neighborhood this year, since Cheryl's usual walking buddies were outside of our bubble. With Bob working from home, if schedules permitted, he got talked into going along. The Newark-Heath area got 4" of rain in a short period of time shortly after shutdown in March. We had a little water in our laundry room, but no damage. Many of those in the area were not as lucky. One of the busy state routes closed for over a month when the culvert washed out.
The boys settled into Cheryl working from home without any trouble. They spend most of their time sleeping.
We did a couple of virtual races this year, along with one socially distanced 5K. Although we have been less active overall (where are all the steps we used to get shopping in the big box stores most nights of the week?), Marius has been more active since he always needs his "pre-walk" before Cheryl can head off on a longer walk.
|Deer, deer, everywhere
Lots of opportunities to see what we are missing when we are not home. The deer make themselves quite at home in our backyard, and once the screens were down and the windows had been washed, there was a lot of opportunities to take pictures.
Getting to see them almost daily, we really got to appreciate the fawns this year. Keeping a closer eye on all the deer meant some banging on the window when they tried to sample things that are supposedly "deer resistant".
Once Dawes Arboretum reopened to members, we took some opportunities to visit like tourists (i.e. Cheryl constantly stopped to take pictures). We even finally made it over to the east arboretum on one of the trips.
|Fall in the Neighborhood
Walks continued through the fall and although we had some nice color one week, it was hard to do it justice in a picture. The above shots include one in our backyard (look closely to see the deer that I didn't even notice when I took the shot since I was too busy staring at leaves). The vista is from the top of Krebs Drive. The bee and the butterfly were hard at work one of the last warm days along Country Club Drive.
In the spring Bob was awarded the "You Made a Difference" Award at school. It came with a nice plaque and a check for him to spend as he chose. His winning ways continued in the fall with the Leaders for Learning Award which came with a beautiful glass apple and funds for the school to spend.
Bob finished the 2019-2020 school year in remote learning. At the time of writing, Newark Catholic is still having all kids in person every day. We passed on hosting our usual family Thanksgiving dinner since it is hard to know what he may have been exposed to.
Cheryl still works for Owens Corning, though it has been mostly from home this year. From mid-March until the end of May, it was 100% at home. June - August she visited her desk in Granville once a week, though it couldn't be on the same day as most of the team due to social distancing requirements. Since late-August, it's back at home 100% since there is no need to be in-person for anything. As you saw above, her new office mates aren't very chatty, so look forward to being able to see everyone in person again.
Missed us last year? Check out the news from 2019.