Quarantine Diaries: Golden hour reflections

Quarantine Diaries: Golden hour reflections

Today is the first time I’ve felt really just crappy since I started home quarantine. It’s also day 14, my last official day in isolation.

I’m not sure why I feel so ‘bleh’ so suddenly… I did yoga, ate a good breakfast, got productive with some work, and cleaned my room trying to snap myself out of this funk. As I reflect on my time in quarantine, I’ve been really happy about the time apart. Time to myself, and time spent with my fiancé since he just got back from a long trip. I’m staying hydrated, sticking to a routine, finished a book, watched a few shows, journaled, edited photos, deep cleaned the house, worked out, gone swimming and paddling, and posted on my blog a lot. These are all things I love and could spend hundreds of hours doing for the rest of this pandemic.

Still, maybe it’s because my mind has been busy about getting things done, and making the most of this extra time. I guess I just haven’t slowed down too much since starting quarantine two weeks ago. Plus, checking the news daily for updates about COVID and its impacts all around the world might be stressing me out.

I think I just need to clear my headspace. Do nothing, be still. Even just for a little bit. It’s going to be ok… just wash your hands and rest your mind Nerelle.

Hope you are all staying safe and healthy, and getting fresh air and sunshine when you can. xoxo

Self portraits at golden hour
Self portraits at golden hour
Quarantine Diaries: Why I decided to self-isolate

Quarantine Diaries: Why I decided to self-isolate

Ian recently returned from work travel to the mainland, and was placed on mandatory 14-day medical quarantine just in case he was exposed to COVID during his trip. Because I live with him, I am also self-isolating to ensure that we aren’t causing potential harm as potential virus carriers. That’s it. And ok… the word “isolate” is kind of a cold, cruel sounding word. The buzz word going around is “social distancing”, and it’s basically the same thing, except self-isolating is just a step further. Like, fully staying at home and avoiding physical interaction with people. Seriously, everyone should isolate or practice social distancing during this time. Please please please.

PS – I wrote this because I just learned about Typhoid Mary. If you haven’t heard of her, you should read this Nat Geo article about it. It’s wildly relevant to our situation as potential coronavirus super-spreaders, and gives insight to why we need to avoid contact with people even if we aren’t showing any symptoms.

I truly hope you are all safe and well! Sending much love and virtual hugs through the inter webs.

xoxo, Nerelle

While I’m self-isolating at home. I go outside at least once a day for fresh air and exercise.

I woke up this morning, and Ian wasn’t in bed. He wasn’t even in the house. I saw on a friend’s ig story that he was out SUP surfing, so I jumped out of bed, put on my biker shorts which I was going to wear for morning yoga anyway, and my Belle the Label swim top, and head to the beach. 

Ian started picking up trash around the beach for about 10 minutes and collected this heap of debris. There was a lot of styrofoam, plastic bottles, a slipper, a piece of a hose, even random cabinet pieces, and an actual car door. I’m always baffled at what trash ends up on the beach. Ian’s doing these quick cleanups as part of his work’s social distancing activity where each employee just picks up trash for a short allotted time, then take a photo of it for data, and disposes of them properly. It’s such a great idea, and I’m going to tag along with Ian along our stretch of beach.
Someone sent me a message the other day on instagram saying that I make quarantine look like vacation… and I was in between feeling flattered and a little guilty, thinking this pandemic is a horrible thing for the world, and if I’m making quarantine look like vacation, am I being offensive?

I thought about it a little and I’ve decided that I shouldn’t feel guilty. This is my daily life even without quarantine, and it might even be a good thing to show people that self-isolation or social distancing is a good thing. If you want to see it as a staycation, go ahead. It’s a good thing to be safe and healthy.

Sometimes I’ll be so laser focused on my work that I don’t realize I’ve accidentally skipped lunch. Working from home with Ian though makes it a lot easier to remember lunch because he’s always hungry haha. Today he surprised me with delicious crunchy fish lumpia!

Life Lately: My birthday, Ian’s home, Yodi’s heart worms, and Coronavirus

Life Lately: My birthday, Ian’s home, Yodi’s heart worms, and Coronavirus

It’s been a little while since my last life lately update. Everything has unfolded just so in the last few months since 2020 rolled around, and let me just say, what the heck 2020?! I was expecting 2020, the new decade, to bring something big, but what I didn’t expect was that 2020 would bring a big crazy global event.

 

For now, here’s just a few updates of life lately:

 

My birthday is coming up! For me, birthdays are always an excellent time to reflect upon personal progress. Making a list of things to move the needle farther. It’s also a great time to take stock in my feelings and pulse check that everything is going to be okay, because it really is going to be okay. Sometimes I just gotta reinforce that in my life. I’m not necessarily a worrier, but I do worry sometimes and there’s a lot happening in the world that does make me nervous. More on that later. I don’t have any specific birthday plans yet, but I’m just glad my fiancé is back on island to spend it with me.

Ian’s back home! When the coronavirus travel advisory came out for American Samoa, I was shattered to know Ian would have to do an additional two weeks in Hawai`i to quarantine. After the advisory came out though, and unfortunately for Hawai`i, there was a confirmed case of COVID-19 on Oahu. In a scramble to get AS residents back home safely, our government issued a new travel advisory which removed the 14 day mandatory quarantine in Hawai`i, and instead returning residents were subject to 14-day home quarantine. So he arrived back home just a couple of days ago, and I’m so happy he’s here! I missed him so much while he was gone. He keeps me calm and centered, and I feel more relaxed to have him home safely.

Yodi is almost done with her heart worm meds! In case you didn’t know, Yodi wasn’t always our pup. She was born here at Coconut Point to a family that lived next door. When the family moved away and left her here, she became kind of a community dog and we all collectively cared for her. But then puppy paw-litics played out and she started getting aggressive to maintain her turf, her territory. At one point, she almost bit a visitor and it was decided that she needed a home, and that’s when Ian and I adopted Yodi. She was about 3 years old at that point. She was healthy, but we knew she had heart worms because she would have random coughing bouts. We’d been wanting to get her treated earlier but it was scary to think that her quality of life would decline during the medication period, and she could still die from it. Plus, we didn’t have a qualified vet on island anymore, so we just made sure to give her the best life we could. Thankfully, one of my favorite nonprofit groups, Coconut Mutts, was able to sponsor our friend who is a vet to come down, and we were able to get her the proper shots and medication. During this time, we have to limit Yodi’s physical exertion as much as possible, and it’s been slow going but we’re almost there. Just a few more days actually before we can start reintroducing her to high activity, and she’ll be able to go swimming with us again soon.

Now about the Coronavirus… it is crazy and I feel like it’s changing the world in so many ways. People are more aware of their health. Economies and industries are toppling. People are dying. Travel is slowing. But also, the environment is working on healing. True colors are being shown. People are slowing down. I honestly don’t know how to articulate yet how I feel about this global pandemic. I am fortunate to feel safe from it all as of now.

There’s a really great post on instagram by @thegreylayers that got me in my feels. She wrote:

“I can’t help but think about all that’s going on in the world. Maybe the world is trying to tell us to go back inward. Maybe our earth isn’t trying to slap us in the face. Perhaps it’s an awakening shake to put us in order. A correction in our own values. maybe because we’ve forgotten and just lost our way too maybe times. Maybe mother is saying, “you’ve lost your way too far from home.” We are literally being forced to stop and slow down by the force greater than all of us. Reminding us we are nothing but human at the end of the day. Let’s take this leisurely stagnance as a time of reflection. To think about what kind of world we want to live in. What kind of person you want to be. All along, our earth has been quietly telling us to take these crises as signs of opportunity. For us to stop and be better. To actually think of what matters. For us to be good again. For us to come home. And remember, not everyone is built for isolation, call your friends, your parents. Check in.”
Jeanne Grey

Grey Layers

Photo diary: Gals night

Photo diary: Gals night

Last weekend girls night with Gabby, Traci, and Sam. We made bloody marys, and bloody geishas, caprese bites, and seared marlin, and had shrimp cocktails, crackers, poke, and salad. We gabbed about all manner of girl talk, but it was just so lovely to spend time with a genuine group of gals who are all true to themselves. 

Roaring 20s Birthday Party in the Treehouse

Roaring 20s Birthday Party in the Treehouse

Roaring 20’s: Island Style

Celebrating Ian’s last year as a 20-something

Ian just turned 29, and in honor of his last year as a 20-something, we had a “Roaring 20’s” theme party, island style, in the treehouse! We couldn’t really do too much of a gatsby-esque theme since we were all pretty much wearing swimsuits, but we gave it minimal effort for maximum enjoyment. Big shout out to my amazing friends for helping me plan and set up for the party, and to all of our friends who showed up and helped us celebrate our special guy.

The sun shone for the first time in a really long time just for his birthday! And between champagne towers, festoon lights, puppies galore, shared finger foods, homemade chocolate cake, flare candles, SUP surf sessions, good music, and GREAT friends–it was a truly memorable night.

Happy birthday Ian! We love you!