How to stay sane while you stay safe

What we’re doing to keep busy during the Coronavirus lockdown!

Learn a language

Simon- I’m learning Portuguese!   

I’ve been visiting Portugal for almost a decade, and yet always feel guilty (and a bit stupid) for not speaking the language. 

I bought a place in Portugal last year, so now that I’m not spending time in hotels where they always speak English, I’ve found even the simplest tasks really difficult- such as ordering at the fish counter, or engaging with trades to get work done.

The Google translate app is excellent, but I think it’s cheating at this stage! I’ve downloaded a language app called Babbel. It’s available for Android and Apple devices, or through their website.  

 I’ve only been in lockdown for a matter of days, but I’m really missing structure and routine. I’m setting aside an hour every morning to learn the language. Babbel has daily lesson plans that are a mixture of written and verbal tests.

I’m really enjoying it so far, and it’s always been something I’ve wanted to do, but never felt like I had the time to do it! 

If you’re interested in joining it let me know, as you’ll get a free month if I refer you! Click here to find out more



Keep fit with Joe Wicks

Julie- I’m doing P.E with my kids!

I have two kids at home, and have went from Kitchen Designer to teacher in the space of a week. 

I think it’s important to maintain some sort of routine to keep sane. 

 I’m fairly athletic, and my kids take part in a lot of sports at school. 

We use our daily outdoor exercise  as a family to walk our dog Smudge.

 However, this isn’t enough for any of us! So every morning at 9am we take part in Joe Wicks Live P.E Class on his YouTube channel. 

It’s a great fun, and we are enjoying doing activities like these as a family!

Click here to find out more


Get Baking

Rebecca- I’m trying new recipes!

I love baking, but usually only set time aside to bake for special occasions or seasonally.

I’m usually very active and rarely in my house- so the lockdown is already quite challenging for me. 

During one of my shopping trips I grabbed some extra baking supplies and I’m gradually working my way through a cook book.

Amazon has been brilliant because if I’m missing some tool or ingredient, I can simply order it on their app and it arrives without me having to leave the house. 

 I love watching The Ginger Vegan on Instagram. Although I’m definitely not Vegan, her videos and recipes always inspire me- although my presentation skills aren’t nearly as sophisticated as hers!  See The Ginger Vegan here

Get your house in order

Dominique- I’m planning my new rooms.

I’m in the process of renovating an old house, but unfortunately work has stopped due to Coronavirus.

To be honest, the break has come at almost the right time. The builders we employed have been massively ahead of schedule, and it was coming to a point were we were having to make decisions very fast (and often unplanned!).

I’m using this time to carefully plan each room within the new house. I’ve created ‘boards’ on image sites like Pinterest & Houzz.

Planning this way is quite simple. I’m trawling the internet for ideas and looks that I like, and filing them on these boards. In some images it might be one element like a window seat, and in others it could be the entire look or vibe.

Planning in this way can be very effective as sometimes it can be difficult to articulate what you want, but it’s much easier to show someone an image and ask them to copy it!

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