Wednesday, August 26, 2020

A New Chapter

Why do baby birds leave the nest before they can fly? 

So that they can learn to fly. 

The dust is now settling on the whirlwind of action of the last few weeks. We've shopped for college, packed for college, taken care of last doctor visits, paper work, financial details, hair and nail appointments, hanging out saying goodbyes, driven 10 hours to university town, set up a daughter in the dorm room of her university, explored the university town (within COVID guidelines) and then driven back home. 

College shopping
College shopping was kind of fun, I have to admit. 

Car was packed to the gills driving down on I-95. 

Our first visit on the campus was a day before move-in. We had heard that the Wake Forest University campus is beautiful, and as we toured the grounds in the evening sunlight that colored the whole campus  golden, it looked like a scene from a movie. The WFU campus is scrupulously clean and maintained with plants and trees that add to the beauty. I was overwhelmed with emotion to see how beautiful the campus is. If I had to leave my baby to be on her own, at least I was leaving her in gorgeous surroundings. 

While we were in Winston-Salem, we heard about another North Carolina University (UNC) that sent all the students back home because of wide-spread (read hundreds) COVID cases. The students were in campus only for a few days. It was unsettling news, obviously. Wake Forest is being strict about their COVID guidelines, but we are not taking anything for granted at this point. One party could lead to an outbreak of high numbers. I'm just hoping and praying that my daughter stays healthy and safe, and will be able to study, whether in campus or from home if they end up sending everyone back home. 

So, a new chapter has begun in our lives. The first baby has flown out of the nest, and that impacts the whole family. I've been feeling a bit blue, but at the same time happy that she has this opportunity to study at a great school. I feel for her too. It's not easy for new college students to leave home amid all this uncertainty, and make new friends when you're supposed to socially distance, and study on mostly online classes (how do you create relationships with professors?), and be on your own in a strange place for the first time. But kids are more resilient that we know, and stronger than they think they are, and they rise up to the challenge. Sending my college student love and light and positive thinking. 

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

White Shirt Dress

 Everyone has a different threshold of pandemic tolerance. There seem to be the two extremes, i.e. those who will hang out in close proximity to strangers in bars, those who avoid public places and order all groceries online and wipe them with lysol when they arrive, and then most people, who fall somewhere in the middle. My family has been quite careful during the pandemic and we opted to not travel, not invite anyone into our home, and have not been dining out, that is, until last week, when we finally broke down and had dinner in our local bistro. When deciding where to eat the factors were that the place had to have outside seating, the outside seating had to be somewhat attractive, and the food had to be good. I have to admit that I was a little nervous going into a restaurant, but I ended up enjoying it so much. No cooking required, no clean up and no washing dishes. Heaven! To mark this occasion, I wore an outfit that I was hoping was projecting carefree but chic summer vibes: a white shirt dress (it is a no brand dress - it literally has no labels whatsoever), white Staud bag, a black straw hat, Naturalizer snake sandals, Poshmark-procured sun and moon dangly earrings (also no brand), and Hermes bangles. Here I am happy and surprisingly still clean white dress after the dinner. 

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Books: Sun a Fun Age

 This book reads like a chick lit but goes in deep. On top level it's a contemporary story of two different women and what happens when their lives intersect. But when you look deeper, it's really a commentary on racism, bourgeoisie culture and white privilege, in other words, it is perfect for the NOW. I read this book over a weekend. It's a quick read that hooks you in and keeps you with well nuanced characters and fast pace story line. This is a Reese Witherspoon book club pick, which is a good thing because it created a lot buzz for this book. I've mostly liked everything Witherspoon picks, and same goes here. Such a Fun Age is Kiley Reid's debut book, and I will definitely keep an eye out for other books coming from her. 

Thursday, August 6, 2020

What I've learned in 2020

That could be a dangerous heading, given that this crazy year could decide to teach me a few more lessons immediately after I've put these thoughts on paper. But I'll take my chances and risk it. So here's what I've learned SO FAR in 2020. 

- It's hard to keep up although the days feel longer than ever. 
- I'm not tired because I do too much. 
- I don't eat junk because I don't have time to cook. 
- I do not not exercise because I don't have the time. 
- But when I do exercise, it's the best mood booster around. 
- I can be kind to myself. 
- You don't have to be productive all the time. 
- I can go on without doing laundry for months. 
- I hate cleaning. But I hate clutter more.
- I love doing cross stitch. 
- I love being home. 
- I'm not that organized. 
- I'm happier not having to constantly run around in stores. 
- I'm not happy having to cook every day. 
- Nothing beats real face-to-face connection. 
- Human beings are pretty resilient and can find the good in most situations.