Let’s Talk with Maggie Toussaint

Top Ten Things to Self-Entertain
By Maggie Toussaint

ART. Make an art project out of random items – a collage of magazine photos, natural materials outside, whatever’s in your junk pile or craft closet.

LEARN. Check out a topic you’ve always wanted to explore. Maybe you’re interested in beekeeping, stargazing, or solar farms. Whatever the topic, you can become better informed with subject research.

MOVIES. Watch movies on TV, online, or in your personal library. Movies can make you laugh, cry, or think. The brilliant ones hit all those notes.

NEW SKILL. Have you ever wanted to whittle? What about identifying bird calls? Maybe you’ve always wanted to cane a chair or play an instrument. You can find “how-to” articles, videos, and libraries on most any topic online.

STROLL. Take a hike. Literally, open your door and walk around your yard or neighborhood. Wave at your neighbors if you see them but be careful not to approach too closely for now.

COOK. Create a new dish from food ingredients on hand. You may have plenty of cookbooks but most likely cook something from this one or that and have gotten lazy about trying new things. If you have cans of water chestnuts and artichoke hearts on your shelf, you can search online for a recipe with those ingredients. I found that these two were interchangeable in some dishes.

FAME. Always wanted to have your own YouTube channel? The only tools you’ll need are a laptop computer with internet access and a camera and a YouTube account. You can broadcast your thoughts, your music, your rants, you name it. Your imagination will be your only limitation.

WRITE. Your ideas are your own intellectual property. It can be very stimulating to put your thoughts on paper, to explore different sides of an argument. There’s something about manually shaping the letters, either by printing them or using cursive handwriting. You could always take the time to learn calligraphy and practice fancy fonts and doodles. This may be the time to get started on that family history you keep putting off.

NETWORK. Though we’re isolated to prevent catastrophic spread of the covid-19 virus, we can communicate with family and friends via calls, texts, and video calls. There’s a difference between being alone and being lonely.

READ. There are no commercials in books. You can set sail on an adventure to just about anywhere at any time in the pages of a book. Reading is a deep passion of mine, and I not only read books, I often reread certain ones. So even if you feel you’ve read everything in your house, you can reread anything on your shelves for free, or there are always digital books to download to your electronic devices -computers, tablets, kindles, and phones. You could even invite your friends to read the same book and have a book discussion group online using an app such as Zoom.

Leave a comment below on your favorite (PG_13) self-entertainment, and I’ll send one commenter a digital ARC of SEAS THE DAY, my April 21 release, the first in my new culinary cozy series.

Also, our April 2020 Booklover’s Bench contest is underway from April 1-18. Click over to enter now for a chance to win one of the six books in the vault. Winner will be announced April 19 on the contest page. (Print copies to US addresses only.) CLICK HERE

Comments

  1. My winner today is Teddi. Congratulations, Teddi. I will contact you privately for your digital format preference.

  2. Since we are retired, there is not a lot of change for us. However, I was used to zipping out daily or, at least every other day, going to different stores just to get out of the house. Now I am shopping once a week VERY early in the morning to get in the senior/weakened immune system hour before everyone else to protect my health (with mask and gloves.) With all this virus worry, I find I am having problems reading. So I jump on Facebook to my different groups and find the chatting with friends very soothing and can get back to reading for a while.

    Cheryl, I hadn’t thought about trying puzzles. I have a few packed away. I need to find them and start on them when I feel restless! Thank you!

    Maggie, these ideas are wonderful. Like you and Cheryl, I love puzzles. I do a word puzzle every day to keep up using words and not forget them, too! Thank you Maggie for such a nice giveaway!

    • Thank you for your comment. It is nice to feel we are a community in our isolation. Its my opinion that it would be weird if this didn’t affect us. So, as we adjust, it’s nice to do the things that bring us solace. I certainly hope you’ll get back to reading again. Best wishes!

  3. I work at our local nursing home so I’m “essential” and can’t stay home. When I get off I like to read, write, watch tv/movies, crochet, or do puzzles.

    • It must be weird, Alicia, to go to work when everyone else is wondering where their day went doing a lot of worrying. But thank goodness for healthcare staffers. I currently don’t have any family members in nursing homes but I’ve had several in the past and was always grateful for the kindness of workers in your profession. I love your after hours fun list!

  4. I’ve been spending nearly every waking hour dealing with my 3 and 5 year old grandsons. By the time they’re in bed at 8 o’clock, I’m too exhausted to do much of anything.

    • Maggie Toussaint says

      You are doing important work, Lois. Being a rock for your family and spending time with those little ones is time you’ll never regret. Writing will be there when you get a reprieve. Hugs.

  5. I am keeping occupied with my writing, reading, and watching TV. I still want to listen to audiobooks on my iPad but these other activities keep me occupied. When restless, I take a walk. Good list.

    • Maggie Toussaint says

      Thanks, Nancy. I always admire how active you are and how much you are able to get done. Must be all that nurse training from back in the day. I am taking more walks now too. Gotta do something to keep the disaster sweets from going straight to my hips.

  6. I’m “essential” so no staying in home for me; however, if I had to, I have tons of projects to finish that would hold me for weeks. Once those were out of the way, I like Cheryl’s idea of jigsaw puzzles…haven’t done one in probably thirty years!

  7. cherylhollon says

    I love jigsaw puzzles — the more difficult the better. I’m starting my third one, so that’s about one a week. I find them challenging, but also relaxing. Just what I need during our ‘stay at home’ order.

    • Good for you, Cheryl. I like puzzles too, though in recent years I’ve only worked on larger ones with the grands. Trying to keep writing to meet goals is challenging with more time than I need. I guess I’ll have to get super busy around here to get the writing cranking again, LOL.