Saturday, May 2, 2020

UP-date on the lock-DOWN

Bonnie a few years ago in an art class at the Crown Center
How are you coping?

The Crown Center sent out an email last week asking, "How Are You Coping?"  It featured four residents, and I was one of them:
"Bonnie Jacobs uses her blog to reflect on what’s happening in the world at large, and in her world at Crown Center and beyond.  Her daily posts that often include the antics of her cat Clawdia, provide continuity of community between friends and neighbors during this crisis.  And if you’re looking for the name of a good book, Bonnie’s the one to ask.  Keep blogging, Bonnie."
Sharon, my neighbor at the other end of the hall, who is also Clawdia's good friend, was another.  Sharon, being tech savvy, now uses Zoom, FaceTime, Skype, and GChat to study Torah, practice yoga, attend her cancer support group, and keep in touch with her family.  Miriam Roth was shown FaceTiming with one of her graddaughters, and I learned that Sandy Moreno got a list of people born in April so she could wish a Happy Birthday to those who would miss having a Birthday Bash.  Every month, we have a party with cupcakes and ice cream and a musical group brought in to play for us, so we can party with that month's birthday people.  This year, I got a call from Sandy (and others) instead of cake and ice cream and music.  Sandy is very thoughtful.  So is her daughter, Tricia Falmer, who provided face masks for every person at the Crown Center last week.  I have great friends and neighbors, don't I?

Clawdia is coping with the lockdown by finding unique places to sleep, like in the opening of her upside-down box.  New boxes are so much fun, if you are a cat.  She also likes sitting in an open window, looking down at the birds in the tree tops and watching people walking by on the sidewalks, sometimes social distancing themselves with one on the sidewalk and one out in the street.  I have had our windows open more this week, since the pollen count is not nearly as bad as it was when it was driving me crazy a week or so ago.

I got a call Friday morning from Pamela, and we chatted for about an hour and a half.  She's one of the Café volunteers, who has now become a Facebook friend.  Later, I got a call from Emily, one of two university students living in the Crown Center with us.  It's nice to have the young people residing here.  Emily, who is finishing up her Master's degree, exercised with a group of us on Friday afternoons before Crown's public places needed to be closed for our health.  I had called her yesterday to let her know there's a package for her on the delivery table downstairs.  I took Faye her prescription that had been dropped off at that table and called when I got back home to let her know I'd hung it on her door knob.

Linguine with chicken livers
Donna suggested we order dinner from Pasta House, a couple of blocks away.  Restaurants are closed here during the lockdown, but they still do pick-up orders.  So I placed an order online, donned a face mask and blue glove, and took my cart out for a walk.  People were waiting in several cars in the parking lot when I arrived and called the restaurant to bring my order out to me.  It's really a strange new world we're living in right now, isn't it?  I brought home eggplant parmigiano, a salad, and fresh broccoli for me; Donna got pasta linguine with chicken livers, a salad, and her favorite dessert — tiramisu.  Nothing like having dinner "together" in our own apartments in separate buildings.  But the food was good, and we'll probably do it again occasionally.

With all that time I spent talking on the phone, it started beeping at me that the battery was down to nothing, so I had to (once again) recharge my phone in the middle of the day.  Then I had to recharge ME — in other words, sleep — before I finally finished composing this post that I mostly wrote yesterday.

Recipe for Date Torte

While under lockdown at home, I've been cleaning out boxes of old papers and came across a 3x5 card with a recipe for Date Torte in my mother's handwriting.  The second line on the card says this recipe is "From the kitchen of" and Mom wrote "Ruby Thayer."  Ruby was mother's cousin, who lived with mother's family after her mother died.  So it's a family recipe, even though I don't remember Mother ever making it.  Here's the recipe, just as my mother wrote it.
1 cup dates — diced
1 cup English walnuts — chopped
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
2 eggs
Bake 275° — 50 minutes
I chose the illustration above from an online search because it seems to have similar ingredients, but I have not yet made Ruby's date torte.  I'm putting the recipe here, so I can find it later and try making it.  It seems simple enough.  Want a taste of it?

Stay mentally active

A fun way to maintain strong mental health during this lockdown is to play mind-stimulating games and solve riddles.  How many of these can you solve?  (I'll give you the answers at the end of this post.)
1.  Where is the ocean the deepest?
2.  If you were running a race, and you passed the person in 2nd place, what place are you in now?
3.  If you have me, you might want to share me.  But if you share me, you will no longer have me.  What am I?
4.  What gets wetter as it dries?
5.  There are three apples on the table, and you take two away.  How many apples do you have now?
Take a virtual tour

If there is ever a time we need a dose of beauty and inspiration, it’s now.  You can tour the Frank Lloyd Wright House in Ebsworth Park (the Kraus House) from home.  Just click on the blue link.

Answers to the riddles:
1.  On the bottom.
2.  Second place, since you didn’t pass the first place runner.
3.  It’s a secret.
4.  A towel.
5.  You have the two you took away.


Helen's Book Blog said...

I think a lot of us are appreciating reaching out to friends and acquaintances more now. Today I am having a zoom with a group of high school friends to talk about a book we all read and my guess is that we'll talk more about life than the book. I also really like that you have young people living in your center; what a great idea!

Bonnie Jacobs said...

Emily commented on Facebook, "I like your sunny warm painting!"
I replied, "Then you can have it. I'm sure it's still around here somewhere."

And THAT, my friends, was my last Facebook comment for awhile. I'm done. Done with Facebook for awhile, for my mental health. Done with the news for awhile, also for my mental health. I'll just isolate myself, stay well, do what I can, blog because I enjoy it, and think positive thoughts as much as possible.