In J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, Frodo says, “I wish it need not have happened in my time.” “So do I,” says Gandalf, “and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.” During these challenging times of social distancing, here are some resources to help you and your family make the most of your time at home: 1. Visit virtual aquariums, zoos, volcanoes, rainforests, and more: Watch the many amazing webcams of the San Diego Zoo, Georgia Aquarium, and more! Zebras, crocodiles, giraffes, pandas, koalas, whales, penguins, sea lions, etc. Take 25 amazing field trips to Yellowstone, volcanoes, rainforests, coral reefs, planetarium, a Canadian farm, Seattle Aquarium, etc. 2. Explore “Harry Potter at Home.” Author J.K. Rowling just announced that this new service for students, parents, and teachers offers several educational tools to cast “a Banishing Charm on boredom!” Tools include craft videos (like how to draw a Niffler), fun articles, quizzes, puzzles, and more—for first-time readers as well as those already familiar with the wizarding world. 3. Draw with Rob. Rob has the YouTube channel, "Art for Kids Hub" and uploads new art lessons M-F, every week! 4. Watch free replays of NFL games, 2009-2019. Valid Until 5/31/2020. If you don’t have time for the full broadcast, replay an entire game in 45 minutes with condensed games. It's every play, back-to-back-to-back. If you want to break down tape like the pros, check out the All-22 angle Coaches Film footage.
5. Crowdpurr: Fun, free virtual games for up to 20 people on their phones! Play with friends and family across town or across the country. Create your own trivia questions or use theirs. Create amazing interactive mobile-driven experiences! 6. Top 10 virtual museum tours—free! Visit the world's most popular museums. Several of the tours, powered by Google Street View technology, feature 360-degree panoramic views. Museums include the Louvre, Smithsonian Institution, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Guggenheim Museum, Uffizi Gallery in Florence, Van Gogh Museum, Getty Museum, and more. 7. Games and singalongs: Bring out checkers, chess, Monopoly, and other board games. For younger children, check out these online kids’ singalongs. 8. Pull out your guitar or cello, sit at the piano, warm up your voice—whatever your interest. YouTube has lots of great music instruction. You can also access free guitar lessons. And enjoy some family music time—the younger kids will especially enjoy it! Do a front yard/porch concert for a neighbor: You’ve seen the videos of teens giving concerts on the front porch of elderly neighbors. Brighten your neighbors’ day with a short concert in their front yards!
9. Workout! Check out this home workout video—you can find even more online. CosmicYoga is a great one for kids! If nothing else, take a daily walk outside! Go find a Central Oregon trail...there are plenty to still social distance.
10. Live stream concerts! Check here and other online sources for what’s livestreaming today and in the future.
11. Morning meditation: Don’t skip this important mind setting moment. You can find a free meditation guide here.
12. Journal: Take a couple minutes each morning to write down what you are grateful for, how you're going to make your day great, and an affirmation. In the evening, take a minute to write what went well in your day and what could have gone better. You can find the, "The Five Minute Journal" here.
During this time of anxiety and worry surrounding COVID-19 and sorting out our new “normal” routines, it can be easy to let our emotional self-care fall to the wayside. Don’t allow that to happen.