COVID19 life

Day 19: 5 on a Friday

April 3, 2020

1- My daily checklist is really helping my sanity right now.

Providing much-needed structure where it is lacking
SHOWN: Dot Grid page in back section of Full Focus Planner

2- I am now deep into The Topeka School by Ben Lerner, which is dark yet compelling. It took me over 70 pages to really get into it, but now I am thinking about times in the day when I may be able to sneak in some reading. A telltale mark of a good book. My Q2 reading list is shaping up! Anyone have any recent favorites to recommend? The escape into a book (or show/movie/etc) is ever so important right now!

3- I am wondering if I will be able to continue to do some of my GME work remotely after this is all over. I am actually finding it more efficient doing the work without people interrupting me all day! And saving the commute time is pretty awesome too (my commute is ~30 min each way in traffic which isn’t terrible, but it’s something!).

On the downside, I miss my dual-monitor setup that I have at work.

4- Some podcast episodes that I have found helpful/enjoyable recently:

5- 3 good things from yesterday: C was reasonably focused and I was able to help him with “school” for about an hour; I took a walk in PERFECT weather, and I was able to spend a decent chunk of time reading in bed last night (and still got 7.5 hours of sleep).

C in “school”. He needs a haircut!


  • Reply Lori C April 3, 2020 at 6:03 am

    Sarah not sure if you subscribe to Simple Families podcast, but they have had a couple great episodes lately! One about how to get your kids to do quiet time, and another with some suggested activities (7 tips for social distancing with kids). A habit tracker during these days is a great idea, you’ve inspired me. Thanks for your posts they really are a treat!!

  • Reply Sarah April 3, 2020 at 6:13 am

    So I just ended up buying two monitors, a fullsize wireless keyboard, and mouse. Best 300 bucks I ever spent. Can’t imagine you’ll regret having it even after. Highly recommend.

  • Reply Amanda April 3, 2020 at 6:48 am

    Two recent “this is good I need time to read” books are The Authenticity Project (Clare Pooley) and Storyteller’s Secret (Sajal Badini). Let me know if you need more!

    I miss my dual monitor set up, too. Last night I was thinking about driving to the office this weekend to take mine home for the next few weeks. Though I do like the suggestion to buy my own to a duplicate setup at home.

  • Reply Chelsea April 3, 2020 at 7:44 am

    I really liked American Kingpin by Nick Bilton. It’s about the guy who developed The Silk Road, the infamous drug/weapon/poison marketplace on the dark web. I though it was an incredible page-turner considering the guy is in prison right now 🙂 Very much a “read alike” for Bad Blood, which I remember you liked.

  • Reply Janelle April 3, 2020 at 7:44 am

    Looking forward to seeing people’s ‘escape into a book’ recommendations. I’m in desperate need!
    Once I got into Kristen Hannah’s The Nightingale and The Great Alone I found myself thinking about them a lot.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger April 3, 2020 at 8:13 am

      I LOVED The Great Alone but have not read The Nightingale!

  • Reply Kathleen April 3, 2020 at 7:52 am

    Strongly recommend getting your own solid WFH setup. Doesn’t GR say that quality tools make work a pleasure? I have a 32” external monitor and just purchased a standing desk for home (not a replacement for the treadmill desk at work, but it helps). With a wireless mouse and keyboard, too, work is so much more doable.

    Also, C’s is adorable! My boys are shaggy too, and it’s so cute. Faces look totally different with all those gorgeous locks flopping around!

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger April 3, 2020 at 8:13 am

      We actually have one great setup but it’s in Josh’s office! I hesitate to buy a duplicate but he reminded me it exists and I can plug my own laptop into it.

  • Reply Gillian April 3, 2020 at 8:24 am

    Reading-wise, I have decided rereading some old favorites is the way to go. I have planned to take Gretchen Rubin’s lead after she did a summer of Proust. I am just starting before summer. I plan to re-read all of Jane Austen’s novels. The subject matter is light. I have read them before and I find them comforting. I have them all in real book form which means that to read I don’t need to snag an iPad which is a real challenge in my house at the moment what with all the Zoom-ing (this is a real verb right).

  • Reply Heather April 3, 2020 at 8:25 am

    Looking forward to escaping into a book this weekend! Thanks for your continued sharing during this time, it’s helpful to read your strategies. I’ve found gentle structure and a few (sometimes low bar) goals really helps as well. Have a nice weekend!

  • Reply Rachrl April 3, 2020 at 9:40 am

    You can get a portable Asus second monitor, it’s slim like a tablet but amazing.

  • Reply Rachel April 3, 2020 at 9:49 am

    Two more things!

    1) Maybe try the “make my book” design service on shutterfly. I usually make our books every year, but I just tried it this year and it’s not bad. I’ll have do some editing and add captions, but it will save me a lot of time. It’s free right now.

    2) I recently read “The American Marriage” and “Last Christmas in paris” both of which were unforgettable and amazing.

  • Reply Ana April 3, 2020 at 11:53 am

    Thanks for the book and podcasts recommendations! Adding to my list. I’ve gotten through my usual podcasts taking long walks, so I need some for the weekend. Yes, the GME stuff sounds doable from home. I LOVE working from home (when my entire family isn’t also here), the lack of commute and getting “ready” is a time and energy saver. Am I the only one without a schmancy two monitor set up in my office? We are lucky to get new computers every 8 years or so.

  • Reply Kaethe April 3, 2020 at 3:55 pm

    I’d love more ideas of “books to escape into”. I really enjoyed “Behold the Dreamers” recently.

  • Reply Klara April 3, 2020 at 5:21 pm

    I love this. I am copying this ASAP

  • Reply LEE April 3, 2020 at 7:04 pm

    Have you read The Flatshare? It’s a British romcom, and it definitely lifted my spirits.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger April 3, 2020 at 8:12 pm

      OOH, I have not but I think I heard about it on MMD and it sounded lovely.

  • Reply Daphna April 3, 2020 at 7:52 pm

    Was just thinking today… have you ever listened to the Empowering Women Physicians podcast by Sunny Smith? She was one of my family medicine attendings in med school and is a wonderful, smart person and doctor. She is also one of the most successful physician coaches out there (in addition to being a mom and working full time in medicine). I think she would be great on the podcast too!

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger April 3, 2020 at 8:12 pm

      YES! I’ve heard her before and I’m thrilled to know she is also really great in real life (though I suspected!). YES, would love to have her on.

      Or to go to her coaching retreat – wasn’t it in Bora Bora!?!? Maybe someday!

      • Reply Daphna April 4, 2020 at 1:33 pm

        Yes, she is really great in real life!! Bora Bora did sound awesome, maybe when I’m no longer a fellow! 😉

  • Reply Emily April 4, 2020 at 10:06 am

    I can only read books that are pretty engrossing right now due to my diminished attention span in this time. Some great ones I’ve recently enjoyed—Nothing to See Here (quirky and fun), Such a Fun Age, and for nonfiction, Ronan Farrow’s book about Harvey Weinstein and NBC News, Catch and Kill (such a page turner!).

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