Social Distancing & Self Care: March 2020 Wrap-Up

What a time to be alive, am I right? I mean, who could have ever predicted this?

Spoiler alert but March was so not my month. For the most part I kept it together. Mostly. Then I was officially stood down from my job and suddenly shit got real. And my parents moved interstate earlier than planed. All that bottled up anxiety and stress revolving the current situation just broke. [Side note: I’m now scheduling my breakdowns – nothing makes you feel better than a good cry.] Suffice to say, I had a very lousy reading and blogging month.

But that’s okay. We can’t win them all, right?

Basically my month [and pretty much everyone’s for that matter] can be summed up in one word: COVID19. Like I said – it’s impacting all of us. Not only has it cost a lot of us our jobs and livelihoods but we’ve now entered a new reality of social distancing. And it’s a lot.

So I’m making the choice to focus on the positives instead. At least, as much as possible. The good news is that we’re all facing this virus together. We’re on the same team. That’s pretty huge. For once, humankind isn’t separated by war or rivalry. So, let’s look at this experience as a chance to come together to make a difference. That way, when we come out of this – and we will – we’ll be a kinder, more understanding, resilient community. #spreadlovenotfear.

Anyway, I don’t want to sound preachy or political – just needed to get that off my chest. I’ve just seen a lot of negativity going around which won’t help the situation. At all.

But, in terms of my month, it’s been pretty full on. The assistant manager was on leave at work so I picked up the majority of her hours – which, in hindsight, I am so grateful for now I’ve been stood down.

Other than work, I celebrated the anniversary of my mum and step-dad’s wedding. As with most things in life, it didn’t exactly go according to plan. A kind of last hurrah before their move north, we had planed a family holiday to the Great Ocean Road. I had booked an appointment at the spa and was looking forward to a a much needed spell of calm. That all changed when, on the first night of our stay, Australia formally entered Stage One of it’s COVID19 Shut Down. Over night, the resort facilities, except for the accommodation, were shut down. With the pool, the gym, trampoline park, cafes and restaurants closed we found ourselves stuck in our suites, all dressed up with nowhere to go. We made the best of a stressful situation by playing Cards Against Humanity and watching Netflix. But suffice to say, I didn’t get the holiday I needed.

With all this in mind, I wasn’t exactly my usual self and I found that not only did I barely read, but I couldn’t tap into my creative mind. My writing voice just disappeared and everything became a struggle. For the moment, that struggle seems to have subsided and I’ve been writing daily – WHOO HOO! Touch wood my new momentum will carry me into April.

Crescent City: House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas | ★★★★★ | I am pretty much deceased. Crescent City is probably the best book I’ll read all year. And it’s only march. Sarah J. Maas has officially out done herself with this one – sprawling, dark and gritty, Crescent City is a complex novel of epic proportions.

Virgin River by Robyn Carr | ★★★½☆ |  So I still haven’t separated myself enough from Virgin River to write a proper review. Virgin River has this wholesome vibe with feisty characters but the conflicts felt too simplistic. I think I only enjoyed the book because I’m obsessed with the show. As a novel, it just doesn’t hold up. I openly cringed at certain lines and the characters weren’t as developed as their Netflix counterparts.

HavenFall by Sara Holland |★★★☆☆ |  I’m going to chalk this one up to my Crescent City hangover. The trudge was real, okay? Havenfall had an intriguing premise with a strong setup but the story itself fell flat. The plot felt juvenile and lack luster. I did appreciate the LGBT rep and idea though.

Bone Crier’s Moon by Kathryn Purdie  |☆☆☆☆☆| Clearly it’s been a ruff month – I only finished three books. I think that’s a new low. At the time of drafting, I’m 50% into Bone Crier’s Moon. It’s definitely interesting with a solid, eerie plot and creepy magic system. I just haven’t been 100% hooked. It could be just my current mental state.

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott  |☆☆☆☆☆|I finally got my hands on the gorgeous film-tie-in-edition of Little Woman and it’s exactly the wholesome content I need at this point. The March sisters feel so real – they just leap off the page. I’m only 7.26% in [lol] but I’m predicting a five star rating.

Harley In The Sky Circus Book Tag

Five Things I’ve Learnt Living Alone

Review: Crescent City – House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas

The Sunshine Blogger Award [Take 3]

Review: Journey to the River Sea by Eva Ibbotson

Changing Tides & Weyes Blood: February 2020 Wrap-Up

So there you have it – my “lousy smarch” reading month. All jokes aside, I’ve learnt this month that it’s okay to not be okay. I promise you – it’s not all doom and gloom, there are positives to be found in this shared experience.

Keeping that in mind, I’m taking April one day at a time. #bringontheselfcare. I’m not going to be rigid in my monthly TBR or plans. If I read just one book this month I’ll considering it an achievement. First up, I want to finish Bone Crier’s Moon and Little Women. I’ve also set my sights on To Kill A Kingdom because I feel like I need a Little Mermaid retelling right about now. As for the rest, I’ll be playing it purely by mood.

And just a quick reminder: this is a very stressful and unsettling time for all of us. It’s okay to feel overwhelmed or anxious. Practice social distancing and stay safe but don’t forget to look after your mental health! Mental heath is just as important, especially now. Keep smiling, stay positive – we’re all in this together and we’ll get through it. If you need a friend you are always welcome to reach out to me. Stay safe everyone.  #spreadlovenotfear


20 thoughts on “Social Distancing & Self Care: March 2020 Wrap-Up

    • It wasn’t exactly what we pictured but we still managed to have a good time. And I kicked EVERYONE’S butts at Cards Against Humanity which is always a good time. Sending lots of love your way – let’s hope April’s MUCH better. (If anything at least we can gorged ourselves on Easter chocolate! Hello bright side!) ❤ x

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  1. i’m sorry to hear you didn’t get the holiday you needed, alexandra! but i’m glad that you’ve picked up writing again — it’s super hard to be creative during this time so i admire you for that 🥰 and i’m excited to see your thoughts on bone crier’s moon, i feel like there’s been so much hype for it! have a great april!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much, May ❤ That means a lot! I've been on this sort of blogging binge – I've been writing so many reviews and posts to stockpile and schedule over the coming months. (You know, just in case the anxiety finally kicks into gear and I lose those creative juices again!). You can bet that Bone Crier's Moon is 100% in that stockpile! I'm actually going through my final edit today – it should be live in a week or so! Spoiler alert: it was such a moody, atmospheric book! I had a lot of fun with the mythology and lore.

      Happy reading ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      • i really should be doing that as well! i’ve been expending my creativity a lot more than usual with actually writing and having to choreograph a dance piece, i know it’s going to run out soon 😭 and ah, i’m excited to see your review! ❤

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  2. Sorry u couldn’t vaca 😦 COVID 19 has messed w all of r lives some more than others and I hope you are staying well and safe!! Glad u loved Crescent City!! SJM is one of my fav authors and I’m dying to read that book 😫😫 I also really want to read virgin river bc I heard it’s a great bing able series… also it’s on Netflix… hope u love To Kill a Kingdom! I really liked that one 😉 great post!

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    • It definitely has – it really makes you stop and think that we rely on our routines and norm a little too much. I mean, the panic buying and toilet paper situation was next level. At least it seems to have calmed down now! I hope you and your family are safe too! ❤

      In terms of Crescent City – GIRL YOU ARE IN FOR ONE WILD RIDE. I'm already holding myself back from a re-read!

      And I'd HIGHLY recommend Virgin River on Netflix. I'd watch the show first because I wouldn't want the book to put you off (I know – blasphemy!!!). The thing is, I feel like the book is very binge-worthy but the characters are better rounded and fleshed in the show. I openly cringed at a few lines in the book. That being said, once you have that attachment to the show and the characters, I didn't mind the book's shallowness so much. Be sure to let me know what you think if you try it out! It'll be the perfect wholesome show for social distancing. x

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  3. Crescent City is definitely a new favorite of mine and for sure has potential to be my favorite book of 2020. I’m bummed Virgin River didn’t meet your expectations- I’ll probably still pick it up before season 2. I hope we all have a much better April ❤

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    • I think the fact that you loved the show you’ll still enjoy it. I had a lot of fun but the thing is, I think I enjoyed the book because I was already attached the the characters. If that makes sense??? I feel like had I of just picked it up without that prior love I would have been bored. A classic case of the series being better than the book. That being said, I looked at the book as a chance for another adventure with Jack and Mel and when you look at it that way, it’s worth the read.

      if you do picked it up I’d love to hear you’re thoughts! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  4. It sounds like a super tough month 😕. I’m so glad you were able to find some joy amidst all the let-downs! And that Little Women edition sounds awesome 😮.
    Taking this month one day at time is a good idea, and self-care 👌🏽 can’t go wrong with thinking about yourself (and maybe doing a face mask or two lol). I hope April brings more happiness, Alexandra! Stay safe 🙂💕

    Liked by 1 person

    • I definitely think you’ve got to make like Feyre and not let those hard times get you down. Happiness is just a mindset after all – troubles can be fun when you change that point of view! Though I am looking forward to a calmer month in April!!! 😉

      Stay safe and have a happy month, Belle! ❤ 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Oh no, that family holiday would’ve been perfect 😦 So sorry you’ve had such a tumultuous month. I was also stood down and it’s kind of terrifying. I’ve never felt luckier to live in Australia though. I hope you’re able to get some financial compensation during this time to ease the stress ❤ Stay safe! xx

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    • I have to agree with you there – I feel like at least through it all the government is doing it’s best to help both the economy AND the citizens *cough cough TRUMP cough*. Lol sorry to get political! 😉

      And I’m really sorry to hear that about your job too! I think I’ve past through that terrified phase – I just keep telling myself that we’re all in this together. Fingers crossed we’ll get that Job Keeper’s compensation. We’ve just got to take it one day at a time and stay positive. ❤ Keep that chin up! xo


  6. A bit late, but I’m here!
    I wish you all the best safety and health for this month.
    Stay safe and if you ever need to talk to anyone out of pure boredom, you know where to find me ❤
    – Emma 🙂

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  7. Awww Alexandra, I’m so sorry to hear about your job 😭 So many people I know have been stood down because of store closures and I honestly feel so helpless – I hope you’ve been able to get some financial support, I understand how heartbreaking & stressful it is 😔 It’s so awful that you weren’t even able to get in a relaxing holiday before this situation escalated! Hopefully we’ll get through this ASAP & you guys can have a make-up trip 💛

    Sending you all my love and best wishes – I hope April will be a better month for all of us! If you ever need to chat, please know that Nish & I are here for you anytime 💛💛💛

    💛 Your saltmate, Ngoc

    Liked by 1 person

    • Awwwww, thank you so much for your kind message! Send you a big hug! ❤

      I feel like now I've settled into my new normal and adapted to a steady routine I've been doing much better. Dare I say it, I've been okay???

      I hope you and Nish are doing okay too, I'm sending all my love and best wishes your ways too! ❤ ❤ ❤

      Your Saltmate x

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