Week day schedule for unemployed parent during coronavirus

The kid splitting wood


7am: Wake up, make coffee, 10 minutes of meditation. Mindfulness not exactly at its peak lately.

Kids are playing Minecraft on Playstation. Take this opportunity to write. Writing schedule is as follows:

  • Monday: write What Really Matters update; discard 2/3 of what I write because I’m so dissatisfied with it

  • Tuesday: Writing & business development for healthcare clients (services offered: thought leadership ghostwriting; deeply reported case studies; long-form magazine-style storytelling).

  • Wednesday: Personal writing for nonfiction book project. Also discard most of it.

  • Thursday: political column for Liberty Democrat, plus business development for consulting work.

  • Friday, give yourself a break. Scroll Twitter, try to say something useful.

11am: Make breakfast, usually a gigantic pot of oatmeal. There are three kids and three grownups in the house, it’s the easiest thing.

12pm: Everyone goes for a walk. Alternate between walking to the Pound, the bouldering area, or the opposite direction to the Rumney crags. Both are a 2-mile round trip. On nice weather days hike up to a new crag and give thanks to be walking distance to such amazing rock.

1pm: Synthesize daily school work from kid’s Waldorf school. Note amusement about an anti-technology pedagogy suddenly trying to move everything online. Give printed out worksheets and lesson plan to kid to work at dining room table.

Take this opportunity to check in on news, listen to a podcast, and plan an afternoon project for the house, usually outdoors.

2-2:30pm: Cook lunch for kids. They take a break from work to eat, then they go back to finishing up school work.

3:30pm: Kids are done with their work. Take this opportunity to wonder yet again what exactly they usually do at school all day long, and why I’ve spent years driving through Beltway traffic to deliver them there every week day at the crack of dawn.

Start work outside. Build another planter. Chop wood. Stack wood. Split wood from downed tree still sitting in the front yard. Carry wood inside to warm up and dry out for later wood fires. Hope I spend less on heating propane next year because of all this wood.

Plan more of the garage renovation, which was originally meant to be an Airbnb for climbers, but now who knows. Wish I’d built the bouldering hut last fall before coronavirus hit. Clean tool shed. Trench for sewer drain to connect to main house. Make online order for Lowe’s pickup. Remark how Lowe’s is still open and somehow an essential business.

5:30pm: Come inside, warm up. Play Catan with kids. Make tea, have a slice of fresh-baked bread with butter and jam.

7pm: Dinner, followed by alternating a movie with kids or reading & playing guitar by the wood fire. Have a glass of wine. Put on a record.

9:30pm: Put kid to bed. Have a vodka.

Read, write, and check the day’s death toll, new daily cases, growth rate, and related news. Digest that this is the world now. Try to predict whether Maryland and New Hampshire will get as bad as New York, or if social distancing will help slow the spread and flatten the curve. Try to predict just how bad an economic depression is coming and then wonder what the hell I will do about it.

11pm: Go to bed, bring a book, but turn out light before I get too far in it.