DIY During Quarantine

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DIY quarantine

We are all struggling to balance our schedules and adjust to a new way of life. These 4 DIY activities will come in handy and give you something to do. They may even stick with you in your daily routine after all of this is over. They are relatively simple enough for the kids to help if you are looking for a great bonding activity. Enjoy and good luck.

1. CDC-Approved Cloth Face Masks {2 ways}

First and foremost, most places are now requiring a mask in the presence of others. Yet, manufactured masks continue to be hard to find in stores and online. Why not learn to make your own? Whether you are in a pinch or want to get creative and add your special touch to this now mandatory everyday accessory, this is a fun at-home activity.

Click here to find both a no-sew and sewing option for a CDC-approved face mask that uses items you just may have lying around the house. Much to my dear grandmother’s disappointment, may she rest in peace, I never did learn to sew. But if you are feeling a bit more ambitious and want to make your grandma proud, get sewing!

2. Hand Salve

If you have washed your hands 50 times a day for 2 minutes each time, while singing “Happy Birthday,” “Row, Row, Row Your Boat,” “Jolene,” or “Love on Top,” as recommended, then your hands are more than dry. They are cracked, splitting, and raw, to say the least. Here is my favorite all-natural “Herbal Hand Salve,” posted by Kelly at SimpleLifeMom.com. It may take a few steps to make, but it will be a soothing lifesaver at the end of each day.

Tuck yourself in for the night, lather up your hands, throw on some gloves or socks, and sleep restfully while your hands marinate and heal overnight. It can also be used to moisturize and soothe dry, irritated feet, knees, and elbows and even to protect ears, lips, and cheeks from cold and wind. I hope to make a few tins of this salve for gifts for friends and family and to share with essential workers.

3. Hand Sanitizer {2 ways}

As you may have experienced, hand sanitizer is scarce, coveted, back-ordered, sold out…I mean, there is no Purell in sight. A few lesser-known brands have recently been making their way onto the shelves, and local distilleries are getting permission to make it as well. However, if you’re not too keen on leaving your sanitizing up to chance or, like my mom, you may be allergic to some of the ingredients in premade hand sanitizer such as Aloe or Vitamin E, it may be worth it to make your own. Here are two ways to make your own hand sanitizer. It just depends on if you prefer gel or a spray.

4. Whipped Coffee or Dalgona Coffee

I must admit I am always skeptical of the latest craze, and I don’t usually drink sugary coffee drinks, but I must admit I have happily jumped on the whipped coffee bandwagon. It has become the early jolt I need during these exhausting times. Plus, let’s face it, sometimes all you can handle is 3-4 ingredients after making non-stop meals, all day, every day for months. And once you get the hang of it, whipped coffee can be faster than making a pot of coffee, and you feel like you got a specialty drink from your favorite coffee house.

You may get a thorough arm workout if you decide to whisk by hand. You can also use a mixer or milk frother. The mixture will start to thicken and change color after only a minute or two of whisking. However, you will find yourself mixing for at least 3-4 minutes until the mixture is thick enough to hold a soft peak. The xanthan gum, a preservative in instant coffee, helps stabilize the coffee when whipped, giving it that airy, frothy texture. This is why this recipe calls for instant coffee powder, not finely ground espresso or regular coffee.

You are then ready to pour it over your cold milk in your favorite coffee glass. Luckily, you can also use your favorite milk substitute (almond, oat, coconut, rice milk, etc.) as well. One sip and the bittersweet, frothy, creamy goodness hits your lips, and you are tempted to gulp it down like a shot. Instead, sip slowly and savor it. I have tried other variations with frothing it again in the glass or pouring it together with the milk into the electric frother for a hot creamy delight.

What DIY activities have you discovered during quarantine? 

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Emily is the mother of a beautiful 10-year-old boy and a handsome 5-year-old, high-energy, boxer pitbull mix. She was born and raised in Rahway, NJ. She obtained her Bachelor's degree from Columbia University in Psychology, with minors in Spanish Language and Literature and Visual Arts. She has been a print producer for fashion, luxury, and consumer goods clients for over 20 years. She has now resided in Ardsley, NY for over 10 years. Her interests include yoga, pilates, meditation, travel, minimalism, outdoor life with a dog, special dietary needs, clean eating, essential oils, prenatal/neonatal health, wine and cocktails, and animal rescue, to name a few.