Week 5 & 6 of Lock Down

Are the days/weeks running together for anyone else yet?
Because they are for me.
This post’s format will be a bit shorter because honestly, it’s becoming a lot of the same old, same old stuff. Elearning, playing and cleaning. But there have been some highlights.

-A lot of foam clay creations were made. Claire and Avery even produced a stop motion video with it on Day 30. Claire wrote the script and did the directing and camera work. Avery directed the characters. I stood in for Avery for the final voice over work.

-Day 32 was Easter! We made an Easter cake the night before, watched the movie “Hop” and had an egg hunt in the morning. We had a fulfilling lunch of lamb (which is typical at a Danish Easter lunch), potatoes and green beans (+ cake).

-Day 34 was spent in the forest geocaching (see this post on what geocaching is if you missed it). It was a bit chilly but sunny with light winds. We walked around a lake for around two hours. We even did some hiking off trail which got one little girl’s shoe stuck in some mud. I also packed our toddler carrier that I had previously planned to use in Italy with Avery. It worked great!
By the end of the walk, we had found seven geocaches! Score!

-Day 36 was an excellent elearning day. Claire dressed up as Captain Claire with her sidekick Vipey. They zap litter away with their eyes and grow trees really fast with laser eyes. Pretty hilarious (she’s 100% me).

She also spent that day racing a car she had made and measuring how far it went. It was a great activity for her and her sister to use some math.

-After a week of elearning, we again hiked off to the forest to geocache. We went to another lake surrounded by forest. This area was surrounded by walking trails and off-roading bike trails.
This time, Avery walked most of the way. It was a very fun geocache as all the geocaches were pretty easy to find and had themes. The girls loved guessing what the next one would look like. We also found a sinkhole and Viking mound.
Claire and the husband climbed up a huge hill to find our 2nd to last geocache. Claire was absolutely covered in dirt by the time she made it but was grinning from ear to ear. She was super proud of herself.
By the end of the day, we had walked 2.5 hours and had found 14 geocaches.

-The next day (day 39) we played a lot of ladder golf and climbed into the “tree house”. Another glorious sunny day in Denmark and it was also noted as historical by the Danish Meteorological Institute or DMI. Only 5.2 mm of rain had fallen in April throughout the country (normal rainfall for April is 41 mm). If the month ends with no rain, it would be the driest April since 1974. It could also be one of the sunniest Aprils on record.

-Day 41 I taught the girls how to climb the apple trees in our yard. We also put together our mini greenhouse and had a three legged race. All important life skills.

-Day 44 we went to visit daddy at work and helped grab some wood for our fireplace. We also visited a stunning tulip field.
It was gorgeous and Claire was enjoying running down the rows. But it was also very windy and chilly so Avery ducked out quickly. We picked a bouquet and made our way home.

-The next day we went fishing near Ribe. It was another gorgeous, sunny day and we hoped the fish were biting. We fished for two hours and almost caught one. It was a big one and snapped Claire’s line. Avery lost interest after the first hour and played at the park the rest of the time.
With no fish in hand, we decided we deserved ice cream.
Restaurants are still not open here in Denmark but take away is allowed. We were able to order ice cream through a window and were served it in a different one. Very little contact with anyone although it was pretty busy around the shop.
We took our ice cream (I had hot chocolate) and walked around Ribe. It was sad to see most of Ribe shut down. It is a touristy town and almost all of the shops were closed due to COVID-19.
It was still a beautiful walk along the canal.

As for Denmark’s handling of COVID-19, the country is starting to open. In my previous post I mentioned how the lower elementary students and day cares were allowed to open with restrictions. Some schools have struggled to open due to lack of space, cleaning supplies and/or staff. Most however have opened across the country.

Now select businesses have been allowed to open. Mainly hair dressers, dentist offices, massage parlors, etc. have opened. There are many new restrictions they all must follow. This includes more time between clients, face shields when necessary and lots of cleaning.
Cafes, restaurants, public institutions and a lot of retail spaces remain closed.

Other parts of the healthcare system have also been allowed to open to prevent a bottleneck of surgeries or procedures. Clinics are open but with less seating in the waiting room, more time between patients for cleaning and contact being a last option (video conferencing preferred).

White tents have also begun to pop up across Denmark. They will become testing facilities for the virus and antibody tests. I’m not sure if they are operational yet but they will likely be soon.

Zoos and theme parks are ready to open and were going to open on May 1st but health officials said it was unwise. Plus there is a ban on events of over 500 until September 1st and a 10 person ban in place until May 11th. Many have now decided to stay closed out of safety.

Unfortunately because of the gradual opening, some people are starting to become complacent. The police are issuing fines and now closing down outdoor areas where people have congregated. The daily reminder is that the COVID-19 threat is not over and we must continue to keep our distance. The next few weeks are going determine a lot on how the reopening is effecting the spread of the virus and if the healthcare system can handle it.

It’s been a long ride. And it’s only been a month and a half. I find myself having a short fuse. I’m anxious about the news, my childrens’ mental health, their education, our health and the health of those I love back home. The what ifs also get to me a lot. Will we make it back to the USA? Will we ever be able to travel again while we are here?

I know. Worrying is pointless and gets me nowhere. I need to enjoy the everyday moments. However, when day 1 moments are the same tantrums as day 43 moments, it gets old.

But there is a big change coming tomorrow.
The girls start school! I’m starting them a week before I planned. This is because I saw all the precautions that have been put in place by the school. I think everything is as safe as they can make it. I truly feel that going back will be better for them mentally and emotionally. They so badly miss interacting with people their own age and seeing their friends.
We are all so ready for a change.

Week Four of Lock Down

Day 22
Avery had story time again! She was so excited and this time it was much more organized. Mics were muted and songs were sung. The kids were allowed to talk when their names were called. It was a good time for her.
Claire finished her elearning early so I introduced her to Pinterest. She spent much of the afternoon using the glue gun and creating different figures using plastic Easter eggs. She made a bee, frog, minion, Easter bunny and so much more. Avery discovered the read along Disney book+CD sets in my closet and spent most of the afternoon listening to those.
It was a good hands off day.

It was also a milestone for the world. Over one million were infected with COVID-19. The good news was that 97% of Danes were surviving this infection. The island that includes Copenhagen was reporting that they expected there would be enough hospital beds for those needing hospitalization. A tent was built with the purpose to test more Danes.
Italy was now asking Denmark for materials and medical professionals and the Health Department was considering it.
Churches stated they would not open for worship on Easter.
All pregnant nursing students in their third trimester were told to work from home.
New laws were put in place. If a foreigner was caught breaking the law related to the coronavirus, they could be expelled from the country.

The numbers on Day 22: 3386 infected, 525 hospitalized, 153 intensive care, 123 deaths.

Day 23
Friday was the day before Easter break so elearning was really just one big project. Claire had to come up with some sort of BIG climate project. Something to showcase what she has learned and how to teach environmental issues to others.
It took her a while to think of something. We brainstormed together on some of it too. She knew exactly what she wanted to do but wasn’t sure on how to showcase it. I suggested a presentation and she went for it.

She also had to share a song that was 20 seconds long. The teachers announced they were sick of Happy Birthday. Luckily, we had come up with a song earlier in the week that she was more than happy to share.

After elearning was completed, we went outside. We played some soccer and Avery was a bit of a sore sport. She was very upset when mommy wouldn’t let her score every goal she wanted. So we quickly switched to cartwheels. Claire decided she wanted to learn cartwheels so I tried to give her some lessons. It is now one of her quarantine goals; master the cartwheel.

With cold (and somewhat sore) toes, we came into the house. I decided we needed a dessert for the weekend so we made gluten free vanilla wafer bars. Yum!

There wasn’t a lot of new news heading into the break. Danes were reminded to continue to social distance and keep gatherings under 10 people. The concern for adequate PPE continued.

The numbers on Day 23: 3757 infected, 517 hospitalized, 143 intensive care, 139 deaths.

Day 24
Yeah! Saturday….or really any day over the last few weeks. The only difference is that the husband is home most of the day and there is no elearning.
Our Saturday was spent inventing new games, cleaning rooms, knocking down mole holes in the backyard and some online math.
That evening we had a special event.
The girls decided we needed a fancy meal. It involved us all getting dressed up (the husband even wore a tie), using fancy glasses (wine glasses) and talking “fancy”.
The husband and Claire even decided to act like servers. Avery and I were walked to the table and they served the meal to us.
We were sure to drink with our pinky fingers up.
The meal served was stegt flæsk, potatoes and green beans. The dessert was blueberries, vanilla cake and a drizzling of chocolate.
Oh so fancy…

More statistics were released by Statens Serum Institut (SSI). They reported that most of those killed by coronavirus were above 60 years old. Only four had died under the age of 60. ICUs were finding the patients on respirators are typically on one for over a week and also had an increased risk of dying. A Japanese heartburn medicine was beginning to be tested along with antibody sampling for those recovered from the virus.
Beer was poured into the sewers from some local bars due to expiration date.
Danes were asked to not hoard before Easter as grocery stores were asked to stay open over the Easter holiday (typically most stores are closed from Thursday thru Monday).
5999 Danes had been tested the day before for the virus.

The numbers on Day 24: 4077 infected, 507 hospitalized, 142 intensive care, 161 deaths.

Day 25
Absolutely beautiful day! The sun was shining much of the day. We even got the hammock out. We spent much of the day fighting over it.
We also tried to play outside as much as possible. We went for a bike ride and practiced our cartwheels.

It was announced that there would be a big press conference by the prime minister the next day. Many rumors stated that the prime minister was likely to announce how Denmark would start to reopen. It was reiterated that Denmark could only open if Danes continued to social distance over the break and Easter. The media also stated that it would be a long time until (or if) life could return to “normal”.
Health authorities announced that a 30 minute test would be available after Easter. The goal would then be to test 15,000 Danes a day.

The numbers on Day 25: 4369 infected, 504 hospitalized, 144 intensive care, 179 deaths.

Day 26
Monday. The start of Easter break. We slept in and enjoyed another gorgeous day. I set up a schedule for the girls and man, Claire really likes a schedule. We learned about the oceans using Scholastic learning, did online math and Danish, had an online play date and made multiple crafts.
We played more outside and the girls were sure to water the pavement…

The prime minister announced that it was time to slowly open Denmark. Very slowly. Day cares, preschools and elementary (K-5th) were being allowed to open. Many stipulations were to be added to this opening and more was to follow the next day. All other students would continue online.
All other closings and gathering bans were to stay in place until May 10th.
All large festivals and events are now banned until September.
Healthcare facilities will now be allowed to open back up to other surgeries to limit the bottleneck that will likely occur because of the focus on coronavirus.
A lot of questions and concerns followed into the evening…

The numbers on Day 26: 4681 infected, 503 hospitalized, 139 intensive care, 187 deaths.

Day 27
We started the morning with a special delivery. I had ordered some craft kits from a local hobby shop in Denmark. I bought a clay craft, sewing craft, sidewalk chalk and foam clay.
I told them they could only choose one project per day and they chose the clay one. Claire created an ugly monster (that she did all on her own) and Avery made a unicorn (that I mostly did).
They were very happy with the results.

After our craft time and learning about hand-washing and hygiene care from Scholastics, we went outside.
It was a great day! Highs were around 70°F and winds were light. The sun was also shining bright.
We passed and dribbled a basketball for awhile until the girls decided it was warm enough to change into their swimsuits. Their mission=water balloon fight!
I thought it was WAY too cold to participate but I certainly enjoyed taking pictures and seeing their reactions.

It was a tumultuous day in Denmark. Many Danes either supported the school reopening or hated it. The ones who hated it stated that it was too soon and that the children should not be guinea pigs. The other side stated the lack of children hospitalized and how children were less likely to be severely sick from COVID-19. That it would help to build herd immunity in the country.

The rules for reopening were as followed:
1) Toys must be washable and washed twice a day (no toys from home)
2) Lunch, if possible, should be held outside
3) Desks should be 2 meters apart and preschoolers should try to sit 4 square meters apart
4) Hands should be washed at least every two hours (and entering school and bathroom breaks)
5) kids should play with the same small group of kids and interaction with other groups must be limited

There was also a lot of concern among households of children with or living with someone in the high risk group. The Health Department said these children could still attend school.
There were also questions on if a child who has a COVID-19 positive person in the same household should be allowed in school. SSI figured yes because family members should be cut off from the rest of the family if they are sick.
There was a lot of confusion for most of Denmark on this day.

Some good news was that the homeless were being given needed prescription drugs for free and 24 aircraft were delivering PPE from China. The National Guard was also called into the help direct traffic at recycling sites as so many Danes were turning up to recycle.

The numbers on Day 27: 5071 infected, 472 hospitalized, 127 intensive care, 203 deaths.

Day 28
Today we learned about gravity. Avery had a hard time grasping it but Claire had the general idea.
They also picked out another craft that I had purchased. Monster dolls!
It took them over an hour to “sew” their monsters and it was awesome! The project let them work on their fine motor skills. It also taught them a little about patience.

It was also another wonderful day so we played outside, had an outdoor picnic and exploded a ziplock bag with baking soda and vinegar. Good day!

Denmark finally gave one unified statement on at risk children and those they interact with in their home environment. Ask your doctor. If your doctor says to stay home, keep the children home.
A new app was launched to help track the spread of COVID-19 through the country. A new study also suggested that the infection number could be 30-80 times higher. But it appeared the curve was flattening so Denmark decided to send help to Italy. They sent respirators, a field hospital and over one million dollars to the Italian Red Cross.
Concern for health professionals was continuing as 189 doctors and nurses in one area of Denmark had been infected. Lack of PPE continued to be a concern.

The numbers on Day 28: 5402 infected, 453 hospitalized, 127 intensive care, 218 deaths.

I mean….we’ve been in self quarantine so long the days all start to run together. We continue to keep the girls at home and hardly escape our property. If we do, it is to the beach or forest where it is easy to keep our distance from others.
The girls miss school so much. I miss them being in school. Mom does not make a good teacher along with being a housekeeper and chef (and now gardener).
I’m happy to hear that the curve is flattening here. We’re lucky it is a small country and there is a good amount of trust in the government and the scientist. Most Danes are following the restrictions. Yes, there are full hardware/outdoor stores. Some people do break the ban. However, most Danes are happy to look out for one another.
I have found online grocery shopping so that decreases my stress a bit. I’m just trying to figure out the groceries I need in Danish (no, not an expert yet).
Be safe friends! Social distancing works!

Link to the curve and statistics in Denmark: https://www.sst.dk/da/corona-eng/COVID-19-update_-statistics-and-charts

Week Three of Lock Down

The saga continues…

Day 15
Today was a low day. I was in a bad mood; Claire didn’t want to do her elearning and Avery was her normal stubborn self. I had little patience for the whining about the same stuff and bickering. I did not win the “mom of the year” award for this day.
Avery did get to see her classmates for a crazy story time. It’s actually very hard to have three to five year olds sit still and video chat. There was a lot of talking and story telling from the kids. You could definitely tell they were all excited to see each other.
We also built a fort, watched more Mo Willems and watched the Cedar Falls Library story time.
We played outside a little bit because it was sunny but there was a brisk wind.

PPE donations from China arrived in Denmark; 5,000 visors, 5,000 suits and 500,000 masks. Research began on a drug called Senicapoc. It is being researched to see if it can inhibit ARD and lung damage caused by COVID-19. The National Board of Health also announced it wants to begin testing 10,000 citizens a day. It is a huge increase from the only 3,000 a day Denmark is currently hitting. Universities and researchers across the country were also reaching out to the government to say they can conduct more tests and faster. An article stated that some researchers believed they could test the entire population in four weeks.
Unfortunately, there were reports that health care workers were being told to go to work while sick. Even if they had a cough and hadn’t been tested. With the dwindling PPE supply, this was a huge concern for many.

The numbers on Day 15: 1877 infected, 386 hospitalized, 94 intensive care, 41 deaths.

Day 16
Fridays=short school days. Claire finished her elearning early and had a blast doing her math games online. She absolutely loves them!
She also got to video chat with one of her teachers. I think these chats are very important to her and I’m thankful her teachers found the time.
Unfortunately, the girls did not like the rest of the day because it was…CLEANING DAY!!!
The mean mom made them clean their rooms. One may have snuck into my bathroom and found the lipstick…

SSI (sort of health institute) announced it had developed a faster coronavirus test and planned to deploy it ASAP. The Danish Health Authorities stated that they had made mistakes and will continue to do so since this is such a new and confusing time. Over 115 charges were posted for congregations of over 10 people in 24 hours. Danes must stay separated!

The numbers on Day 16: 2046 infected, 430 hospitalized, 109 intensive care, 52 deaths.

Day 17
We escaped our home! It was an absolutely gorgeous day. The winds were light and the sun was shining. We ran to the forest.
A lot of other Danes thought the same thing we did but everyone was sure to keep their distance.
It was just me and the girls so I was a little paranoid (especially about the electric fence along the trail). But we did have a great time being away from home and in the outdoors. The girls climbed a tree, swung on some makeshift swings and found the perfect walking sticks. It was so lovely to get out.

I did not check the news this day. I needed a break. While I think it’s important for myself to document what is going on and staying up to date, I felt this was a good day to relax. We enjoyed the outdoors and a movie that night. A well deserved break from the happenings of the world.

The numbers on Day 17: Did not record.

Day 18
A cold front had tracked through (see that KWWL viewers. I still say tracked). It was a chilly day and it was breezy. We decided to spend it baking! We made gluten free sugar cookies. While the dough solidified, I cleaned and the girls played together. Another mellow day.

There wasn’t much to report on with the news. Volunteers and donations have been supporting local hospitals and health departments throughout Denmark. The police also reported that speeding had increased by about 10% across the country. So we were all reminded to slow down.

The numbers on Day 18: 2395 infected, 499 hospitalized, 131 intensive care, 72 deaths.

Day 19
A day of video chats. Avery had her class story time. Claire had a class meet up and a play chat with a friend who had recently moved from Denmark. The elearning continued just fine. Avery learned about ladybugs and we made a hilarious hat for her.
After her elearning, Claire turned on the hot glue gun and made her own little craft. It is a sock puppet named Vipey.
The girls also ended the day with a sleepover together.

Big press conference! The prime minister announced that the curve appeared to be flattening in Denmark. The infection rate had been halved. However, the Department of Health said restrictions must remain in place to keep this successful flattening curve going. If the numbers continued this way, a gradual reopening of Denmark would be possible after Easter. A very structured and gradual reopening.
Hospital patients were starting to be redistributed across Denmark to ease Copenhagen hospital which is the hardest hit. Health staff were expected to begin antibody tests.

The numbers on Day 19: 2577 infected, 533 hospitalized, 137 intensive care, 77 deaths.

Day 20
Today’s elearning consisted of me being interviewed by Claire. I had to share three things about myself and they were: I broke (or tied) numerous track records at my school in high school; I was an on-air meteorologist; I have seen three tornadoes (all in Iowa I might add).
Avery learned about the dentist and how to care for her teeth. She also partook in animal yoga.
The fort was put back up and they spent a lot of time reading in it.

I did not take many notes on this day. I guess the day after the big press conference didn’t have a lot of news.

The numbers on Day 20 : 2860 infected, 529 hospitalized, 145 intensive care, 90 deaths.

Day 21
Art day at school. Claire hates art day. She is critical of her artwork and doesn’t believe it is good enough. So yeah…it was a rough day.
BUT! Something amazing also happened today. You see, we have this bar in our house. Lately the girls had just been using it as their “coffee” shop. Avery has a toy that dispenses water into a little cup, very similar to a Keurig. The girls add M&Ms to the water and like to make their dad and I colored “coffee”.
Avery was running around with our remote control (from Iowa) and talking on it like it was a phone. When she walked over to the bar, she pushed some buttons on the TV remote control and managed to turn on some LED lights that we had, up till this moment, been unable to turn on. The girls spent the rest of the day pushing the buttons and changing the colors of the lights. Disco anyone?

Claire also learned about a Danish Easter tradition. It involves making gækkebreve or snowdrop letters. In the USA, we would call it a paper snowflake. On the snowflake, one writes a poem. Instead of signing your name, you write dots that correspond with the number of letters in your name. The letter is then delivered (anonymously) to a neighbor, friend or family member. They, in turn, must guess who sent it. If they can’t, they owe the sender candy. If they do guess correctly, the sender owes them candy.
Unfortunately, we don’t really know our neighbors and live quite a distance from the school and classmates. So Claire dropped it into our mailbox for her dad to find. He was pleasantly surprised but guessed it was from her right away. She doesn’t have to give him chocolate though…

Translation: My name is very sweet, like sugar but not quite.

I also received a head and foot massage that night from two little helpers so Day 21 turned out to be a pretty alright day.

A video app was introduced to Denmark for general practitioners to see patients in need of non-emergency care. Danes were urged to continue to call their doctors for non-coronavirus issues as well. The health department had noted a significant decrease in phone calls. Many health professionals were concerned other diseases were going unchecked.
A lack of PPE continued to be a concern.
Danes with mild symptoms were told they could be tested especially:
-people with close relationships with others in risk group
-people who can not isolate
-large households
-those in contact with infected
-people with key functions to society

The numbers on Day 21: 3355 infected, 525 hospitalized, 146 intensive care, 104 deaths.

So this blog is a week behind. I’m actually finishing it up right before Easter. But a huge press conference happened this week that announced Denmark will be sending all elementary and younger children back to school. There will be stricter rules in place that schools must follow. The 10 person ban also remains in place so schools are planning to adjust. I’ll have a lot more in my next post but I know family members may be reading this and wondering about our girls.
The school they attend has decided to continue with the option to do online learning for the next few weeks. We have decided to go that route. Avery’s class will not do online learning but I hope I can continue to supplement at home.
In the coming weeks, I really need to hammer home personal space. Claire is a huge hugger and I am telling her every day that she can only hug her family. I sing “Happy Birthday” over and over with Avery as we wash our hands. I try to explain how everything will be different once they go back.
I’ll have much more detail on how different in my next post….

Week Two of Lock Down

My husband has wanted me to correct that we’re not really in “lock down”. It’s true the countries borders are closed (unless you have a good reason to come in). Our family is in self quarantine.

So to catch you up…

Day 8
The week the honeymoon was over?
Claire did not have a good day with elearning. It was a lot of written work and she was not a fan. We were arguing about doing your best so I decided to let her take a break. That helped a lot. She was able to finish her work after a breather.

Avery learned about the moon through Scholastic learning. We attempted to make a moon craft (she lost interest fast) and so she went to play play dough and Barbies by herself. WIN!
Mom (me) was tired. Tank on E. Tired of trying to be positive.
Luckily it was a gorgeous, sunny day. The winds were light. After all school work was done, we escaped outside. The girls ran around barefoot (crazy) and pretended to be wood sprites.
I worked on our seven raised beds that the owner had left. They had not been tended to for quite some time and needed clearing out and more dirt. We plan to plant tomatoes, cucumbers, dill, peas, carrots, lettuce and sweet peas. Green beans will be added if we have enough room. Peppers will be grown indoors since Denmark is a bit too cold for them and we don’t have a greenhouse.
The neighbor kids were also outside. We waved to them while they jumped on their trampoline and kept our six feet distance. It was very hard for Claire as she loves to make friends.

Press conferences in Denmark continue and conflicting reports occurred as well. Play dates were deemed OK as long as the children were healthy but then were labeled unsafe later that day. It was finally announced that outdoor play dates were okay but with only one other family, that family alone, and they didn’t have dates with anyone else. Public transportation was being greatly reduced and the elderly were advised to avoid it at all costs. Hostels that serve the homeless are allowed to stay open until the end of April. Opticians were told to close. More financial stuff was passed to help the economy.
The National Board of Health recommended all pregnant women who show symptoms of COVID-19 must be tested. Over 11,000 Danes signed up to help deliver medicine to the home-bound (or high risk individuals). The Prime Minister did a Facebook live to answer questions. More numbers were released. Three children were hospitalized. Intensive care ages were 47-82 year olds with the average age around 70. Most are men.
The United States issued a level 4:Do Not Travel Advisory.

The numbers on Day 8: 1151 infected, 153 hospitalized, 30 intensive care, 6 deaths.

Day 9:
Elearning finally went awesome! Claire did 90% of it herself!
We played outside much of the day as it was sunny again. The girls ran around barefoot (again), roller skated and we cleaned up the tennis court. We don’t know how to play tennis so the court is used for RC cars, skating and biking.
The girls also finished a project they had been working on for awhile. A food truck! They spent a big chunk of the day painting it a variety of colors. That night, we watched a movie and they served us from it.

The Menu:
Drinks (including beer):$0.25

Reports of testing shortages began to be reported by the news. Healthcare workers were not getting tested like they should. Protective gear for these workers was feared to be inadequate. The health department was listening and was promising to look into it and resolve it as soon as possible. A song called “You’ll Never Walk Alone” played across Europe for healthcare workers.
Fines were beginning to be handed out to open businesses that were allowing more than 10 to congregate. A bar in Odense was fined and closed down. A teen was also arrested for stealing hand sanitizer from a hospital.
Danes abroad were told to come home now! The window was closing to make it back.

The numbers on Day 9: 1255 infected, 186 hospitalized, 37 intensive care, 9 deaths.

Day 10
The weekend!!!
Which when you’re in self quarantine it doesn’t really feel like the weekend. I’ve honestly lost track of the days multiple times…
We spent most of the day outside. We rode bikes, worked in the yard and chased bubbles. The girls and I planted peas and carrots (may be a bit early).
Claire has really shown a passion for baking so we baked banana bread together. She loved it.
Our neighbors also had the same idea of spending the day outside as well. They also LOVE pop music and they love to listen to it LOUD. So we also had a bit of a dance party while they jammed.

Denmark police sent out a text message to all Danish mobile phones. It basically said: “We know the sun is out and you want to be out. Practice social distancing and keep congregations under 10. If not, you will be fined.”
Two nature parks north of Copenhagen closed because too many people were escaping there and not distancing. The lakes around Copenhagen became unified meaning everyone must walk the same direction around it. An x-ray bus was deployed in Copenhagen as well to test the homeless and vulnerable citizens.

The numbers on Day 10: 1326 infected, 206 hospitalized, 42 intensive care, 13 dead.

Day 11
Cleaning day!!! It was all met with happy faces and no whining.

I’m lying.

There was a lot of crying and arguing. But the house did get cleaned and there was even time to create. Claire took a mint container and added a flashlight (with help from the husband). I also made a quarantine art wall. I don’t know how long we’ll be in stuck indoors but I can guarantee there will be a lot of art by the time it ends.

A new testing strategy was announced in Denmark. They want to go more with the WHO recommendations of “test, test, test”. Plans were being put into action to achieve the possibility to test 3,000 Danes a day. At this point, it was only around 800-1,000. The conditions were also changed for those who should be tested. They included:
-anyone suspected of moderate to severe symptoms
-pregnant women or newborns with symptoms
-anyone with mild symptoms who preforms critical functions
-special attention given to vulnerable groups

The numbers on Day 11: 1395 infected, 232 hospitalized, 46 intensive care, 13 dead

Day 12
Elearning continues!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It was also “spirit” week for Claire’s class. Monday was mismatch day.
It was another wonderful, sunny day so we played outside. This time we crawled under bushes in the yard and played superheroes. I was the villain. I was also a horrible villain because the girls would get upset when I escaped jail and I laughed so hard I couldn’t run.
We video chatted with some family, watched Mo Willems lunch doodles, started a solar system and made another batch of banana bread.

Today bad news came. The lock down was announced to continue until at least April 13th. We knew it was coming but it still was tough to hear. Danish families were told to stay home for Easter and that a travel ban was being considered to keep families home. Officials were hopeful the peak of the pandemic would happen in four weeks for Denmark. Around 1,060 respirators were ready for those needing them and officials estimated this would be enough.
In total, 17,000 Danes have signed up to help the health care system. A juice factory was starting to switch to bottling hand sanitizer; 17,200 liters of cider was being made into hand sanitizer from one of Denmark’s big breweries and Danish health officials were asking South Korea for the coronavirus tests they had originally turned down.

The numbers on Day 12: 1460 infected, 254 hospitalized, 55 intensive care, 24 dead.

Day 13
Team day=Cornhusker day in this household!
PE day was hard. We did burpees, mountain climbers, jumping jacks and more for 15 minutes. I was sore for days.
Claire and a classmate wrote poems back and forth to each other on the learning app the school is using.
We watched story time live in Cedar Falls, watched more Mo Willems and finished the solar system.

Story Time: So the solar system needed glitter (the girls’ request). I hate glitter. It is bad for the environment (ends up in water supply) and it gets EVERYWHERE. So when I accidentally knocked it all over the floor I said some words very loudly. It is probably Claire’s favorite memory of the week. My choice words: “Son of a musket eating bulldog”.

Yeah…I don’t know where that came from. My husband says it may be from those old Orbitz commercials. I think he may be right…

Around 65 fines were posted by police to those who gathered with more than 10. Private hospitals were ordered to shut down so the public health care system could have access to all anesthesia tools and respirators that may be needed. Denmark’s largest toy store closed down (temporarily).

The number on Day 13: 1591 infected, 301 hospitalized, 69 intensive, 32 dead
*Median age of deaths: 77 years old*

Day 14
Today was meal box day! Before COVID-19, I had signed up for a boxed food service (Retnemt). I absolutely love it! Around our small town, the food selection is pretty much the same but thanks to this service we get to try so many different cuisines. The meals are not always winners (mostly losers for Avery). I do love the convince of someone else doing the shopping for me and designing the meal. I especially love the curry based meals. Yum!

Day 14 was another rough start. It was dress wild day so I had two children running around the house with underwear on their heads. (Yes! It was clean underwear.)
Claire has been learning about the environment and Greta Thunberg. Her teachers gave her a video to watch. It definitely overwhelmed her. Let me tell you about my daughter. She has a BIG heart. She also takes everything to heart. Watching a video about how the climate, mass extinction and how we need to take action NOW, brought her to tears. She felt helpless and kept asking me what can we do? I told her we need to follow the three Rs (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle) and contact our politicians. This answer seemed to help a bit but she was off much of the day.
We went outside and I created a new game with sidewalk chalk and rocks. Claire named it “Throw Rock.” She also won (first one to 300 won).
To close the day, we made coconut macaroons. Lots of sugar and sticky but ssssoooo delicious! They go great with hot coffee or tea. The girls weren’t fans of the sticky dough but they loved dipping them in the chocolate.

Fines were increased on petty crimes across Denmark as they are beginning to occur a bit more. Fines for any crime related to the coronavirus like theft and fraud, increased four times. Testing guidelines were updated:

-nursing homes/institutions employees must be tested
-threshold lowered for who can be tested (includes those with mild symptoms)

Supply issues were starting to become more apparent and it continued to be a priority of the government.

The number on Day 14: 1724 infected, 350 hospitalized, 87 intensive, 34 dead


Whelp. This is very late post coming out. We’re actually already into week three but I haven’t started that post yet. It turns out being at home with kids really limits your alone time. They are over my shoulders (or on my lap) most of the time.

We are sick of each other. Both girls miss their friends (as do I). I even miss just saying hi to the parents I barely know in the morning. I have little contact with the outside world. All groceries are delivered to the house and the husband gets anything that is not deliverable as he is still working.

Again, we remain healthy. We are lucky to be at home and to have such great support from the school to continue their education. We may have shorter tempers but we also have shared many laughs.

Now to work on the week three post….