Masked Pandemic

I’ll want to remember this later.

At the dance competition

The first full weekend in March, we went to Edmonton, Alberta, for a dance competition for Syo. It was our first out of province trip in six, almost seven years. The Covid-19 virus was on its way, but there were only a few cases in Edmonton at the time; we felt safe, and it was great to see some family we hadn’t seen in years. In hindsight, though, the huge dance competition would’ve been ripe for a super-spreader event; I kinda feel like we dodged a bullet.

We got home late Sunday night, March 8, and the first part of the week went as normal. We went to baby storytime with my mother on Thursday. We had plans to go to a luncheon (with talk on historical clothing) on the next Sunday the 15th. I was just starting to feel a bit uneasy about it. By Sunday, the luncheon was canceled, and I wasn’t feeling too sure about Syo going to school. By the end of the next week, school was canceled too. Both older kids got laid off from jobs that Thursday, the 19th.

I have four girls. (This may still be sinking in)

In a lot of ways, we’re in the best possible position. I’m already on leave. Tyo has a second job that is based on online sales, so she still goes in to work there. Aside from having to cover the payments for the senior trip next year that Syo was trying to pay for with her very-very-very part time job, our income isn’t affected much. I was pretty paranoid about taking the twins out over the winter anyway, and except for baby storytime at the public library (which I did find stressful the first few times) we really only went out to doctors appointments and to see family. So our lifestyle hasn’t been affected nearly as much as most people. On the other hand, Tyo and Syo both were supposed to be getting on a plane to Australia yesterday, to go to my brother’s wedding.

Saskatchewan did a pretty good job of shutting down in time, if only because we’re a bit of a backwater and the virus reached us a little later. The numbers for the last couple of weeks have been pretty good, single digit new cases, people recovering faster than more people are getting sick. This is important because we don’t have a large population, and even ten or twenty new cases a day would overwhelm our hospitals soon enough. So the curve has been flattened, here. For now.

That doesn’t make us immune to a second wave, and there haven’t been any days without new cases. I’m not sure what “reopening” looks like. I’d like to be able to at least visit our family and closest friends, though. I’m most sad because I had hoped to spend a lot of time at my mom’s family farm this summer, since I’m on leave, but with this virus around we won’t want to put my 95-year-old grandmother at risk.

Despite the local curve being pretty flattened, we aren’t immune to social peer pressure. I sewed a mask yesterday—Syo took the twins out for a two hour walk (nap) yesterday and it was amazing! I spent most of the time sewing, tackling some mending and then the mask. Some of my friends from Fabricland are making them for sale.

Mask interior

I kinda draped the pattern on my face, but I still wound up taking a pleat to get the fit how I wanted. I used quilting cotton scraps and a dense upholstery flannel for the lining. I remembered (almost too late) to add a pocket for a nose wire. I made channels in the ends to insert elastic or ties through; I initially tried elastic but didn’t like the feel on my ears, and I feel much more comfortable and secure with the shoelace that’s currently there.

Quarantine is a good time to be a hoarder. I had a spool of wire in the box of jewelry-making supplies that I’ve had kicking around since I was a teenager. So I pulled some of that out and made a wire nose piece. It can slide out of the pocket for laundering. The end of wire I used was a bit manky to start, so it’s not pretty, but it still works fine.

So that’s the weird place we’re at in the world right now. At least cute babies make things a little better.

11 Comments

Filed under Sewing

11 responses to “Masked Pandemic

  1. ❤ Sending love from Berlin.

  2. Molly

    The channels for the ties are BRILLIANT! I shall be trying them out on my next batch of masks..Stay well!

  3. I agree with you on the shoe lace instead of ear elastic, way more comfortable! Your family is adorable, it’s wonderful your daughter took the twins out for a walk / nap to give you some time to sew. Stay safe.

  4. Lois

    Just glad to see that everyone is doing well.

  5. Have I told you recently how much I love your daughters? As a sister, I am partial to seeing sisters getting along (cause we didn’t until adulthood). And your babies are fat and boring, your teens are kind and helpful, and i love you all. Your posts are a gift.

    • Well, there are definitely moments of not getting along, but I like to think our good times outweigh the bad ones. I have no sisters so watching my daughters develop that relationship is fascinating.

  6. I’ve made some masks for others, but not for us. I probably should, since we are knee deep in a remodel that has been going on since before the virus was even a thing we knew existed and I have been out frequently for things for that. This was a good year to start homeschooling too, since that didn’t affect our routine at all. And I’ve always been a bit of a prepper, since I grew up in the sticks, so again, not much change there. But, it feels weird to sanitize my keys/wallet/sunglasses/phone every time I get back home.

  7. I’m so glad all is well – we have a similar story about a dance comp a week or two before our lockdown and feel we also dodged a bullet. Sadly for my girl, it was her first ever dance comp and now she has to wait and wait and wait until things start up again. How did Syo dance at her’s?

    To mask or not to mask is a question isn’t it?

    • Her team came in second in their division… which only had two dance groups. 😂 that being said, I think their dance was actually better—certainly a more fun choreography—but apparently just didn’t fit the scoring being used as well. It’s a school dance troupe and there’s been a lot of drama the last couple of years, so I guess it went as well as was likely. 🤷🏻‍♀️

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