“The Earth does not belong to us. We belong to the earth.” – Chief Seattle

Today is earth day, so what better way to celebrate our planet and all of its amazing creatures than to reflect on a few things. COVID-19 has brought a few positive changes to the environment, but it’s not enough. We need to act because after generations of selflessly helping us, it’s time for us to help our planet. Keep reading for some fun ways to be more eco-friendly during quarantine. Let’s work together to save our planet – it’s the only home we have so it’s time we start treating it right.

Tips for working at home during quarantine

With COVID-19 still terrorising the world, quarantine and self-isolation is the best thing for both your and other’s safety. However, forcing all of us into the solidarity and sanctuary of our homes means that instead of waking up each morning and bringing a cup of coffee into the office to get work done, our travel mug becomes a normal mug as we have to work from our home offices rather than professional ones. (This obviously doesn’t apply to all of you who already work from home – if that applies to you maybe you can share your tips for how you successfully work from home for all of us who aren’t used to it?) That being said, working from home may seem like an assignment from heaven or a dream come true, but after a few days we realise that that isn’t the case. Yes, it may be more comfortable and relaxed when working from home but it can also throw your whole routine out of whack. It can be difficult, distracting and near impossible to be quite as productive when at home as opposed to at work so how are we meant to get anything done when we have no other option? Fortunately, there are a few things you can do and steps you can take to make sure that you stay productive and keep your work levels up in the same disciplined approach that you had at work. Let’s get started, shall we?

Easter Weekend Carrot Cupcakes

Hey everyone! I can’t believe that the Easter weekend is already upon us. It feels like only a week ago we were celebrating Valentine’s day. How time flies. This year, I’m sure, is a particularly strange Easter. Even though the stores were stocked with chocolate bunnies and eggs from the beginning of March, COVID-19 has meant that our usual celebrations have all had to change. We usually have a big brunch on Easter, complete with an elaborate hunt around the garden for chocolate left by the Easter Bunny himself. We may not be having a brunch this year, because lockdown is still intact and it’s social distancing instead of social gatherings, but that doesn’t mean we don’t have to enjoy the same delicious treats. Hot cross buns, scones, fresh fruit, croissants and carrot cake are usually part of our spread, and for me, nothing is more Eastery (apart from the chocolate eggs and such) than fresh carrot cake with cream cheese icing. The warm spices combined with the fresh carrots, the flavour from the raisins and walnuts and the silky sweet icing is just too mouth-watering to resist. So this weekend, to make things feel a little more festive while we’re all stuck inside, I’m making carrot cupcakes for everyone. I don’t really have a taste preference between the two but I prefer making cupcakes for groups of people because then you don’t have to worry about evenly slicing up a cake. Each person gets their own mini cake. If you’re looking for something to bake this weekend and have some carrots lying around, why not try out this recipe? I promise it is delicious and well worth the effort.

How to keep the calories at bay during quarantine!

Hey everyone! I hope you are all keeping well, given the COVID-19 pandemic, and that you aren’t going too crazy with all the social-distancing and having to quarantine at home. I was looking through my planner the other day and saw that today was caramel popcorn day! How delicious and heavenly does that sound? Now I was tempted to write a post all about the wonders of this scrumptious treat, along with a recipe of mine to make the best caramel popcorn ever. However, as I was writing out my recipe I was struck by inspiration and found something even better to talk about. As amazing as caramel popcorn is, it isn’t exactly the healthiest and that got me thinking … this period has been challenging for all of us and one of the predominant hurdles is how on earth we are meant to stay fit and healthy when we have to stay home and limit our grocery shopping to non-perishables or frozen foods. I love pastas and frozen meals as much as the next guy, but that doesn’t mean they are friendly on our diets or bodies. It isn’t easy, and certainly far from ideal, but even in this current situation, there are ways for us to keep our health in check. It just requires a little extra effort and a positive, persistent attitude.

Tips for not killing your significant other during quarantine

For many couples, the idea of having to quarantine together sounds like a dream come true. So often, due to the hustle and bustle of life, you seem to never have enough time together. It’s such an effort to try and squeeze a date night in, or some quality time outside of work with no phones or distractions but now with a stretch of time ahead where you’re meant to be inside for 24/7 with each other, that should solve all the problems right? Unfortunately, not everyone feels this way and more often than not, this forced period of alone time could end up being more of a curse than a blessing. So how on earth are we meant to get through it? I’m sure that you don’t want to lose your cool with your partner during quarantine, or get so annoyed that the foundation of your bond starts to crack and violence is starting to sound tempting. Well, I’m not going to lie to you that it isn’t going to be easy. People trapped inside a house, unable to go outside or out into the world and stuck with each other all day every day with no break? I don’t think even the strongest of people can survive that without getting at least a little bit frustrated. However, there are certain things that you can do to ease the pain and make staying together during lockdown bearable and not a total disaster. So, let’s get started shall we?

How to have the ultimate girl’s night (quarantine/isolation friendly)

Having a get-together with all of your girlfriends is definitely a significant occasion. I mean, as much as I love my boyfriend and hanging out with my other friends, nothing beats having a girl’s night in complete with movies, junk food and fun. There is just something so relaxing and enjoyable about a night like this, which makes it such a memorable and frequent event. Unfortunately, an evening like this isn’t exactly possible given the current state of events. South Africa in particular, on day 2 of our 21 day lockdown, is a place where a girl’s night in is an impossible occurrence. So why am I writing a blog post like this when it can’t be done? Well, one of my close friends and I were meant to have one of these this week – something we’d been looking forward to since the beginning of the year. I intended to write this blog post to coincide with all the fun things we would do together; I’m still writing it because as much as we can’t actually have a girl’s night in right now, you can still have all this fun at home (or facetime your girlfriends and have a virtual get-together). So, for everyone looking for some fun ideas to keep you occupied during all this self-isolation, or as something to look forward to once the pandemic has calmed down, here are a few things to do on the ultimate girls’ night in.

Things to do at home during isolation/quarantine – how to keep the boredom at bay

Hey everyone! No matter where you are in the world, indoors seem to be where it’s at. By that, I mean COVID-19 is getting to the stage where it’s safer for everyone to stay at home just to reduce the risk of spread and infection. South Africa is having a 21-day lockdown starting tomorrow, so I too will be spending a significant amount of time in the not-too-distant-future inside the four walls of our house. With that being said, being stuck at home can be incredibly boring. I mean after a few days, things can start to get pretty dull and without being able to escape to the entertainment of the outside world, that means one needs to start getting pretty creative to keep boredom at bay. That’s what I’m going to try and do today – help give a few suggestions for how you can pass the hours at home and not succumb to the dullness of being ‘trapped’ at home. There are quite a few suggestions here, that can be quite adaptable depending on what you enjoy, so I hope you find at least one that can help you with your time at home during this difficult time.