Hello and welcome to my first blog post from the 2020 Quarantine.

First, I want to tell you that Annie's Barn is not one of the small businesses that is struggling right now. Yes, we have lost more than 2/3 of our income. But, we had not yet had a chance to make any investments in new product for this year so we can sit tight for a few months and hope that our merchant partners open back up.

We don't have a storefront or employees -- we are family run. 

That being said... wow. This pandemic is hard on some of my friends and I feel for them. Laying off people. Trying to work on a mortgage. Trying to get SBA loans. I'm so glad I'm not in that shitshow. 

Our fam has been on lockdown since the kids and I got back in town on March 13th. I had never done Target pickup and had to get used to the idea I might order things they could not deliver. Same with Hy-Vee. My Price Chopper I've shopped at for 20 years does not have a pickup option so I've had to learn a few new things. 

Our freezer had not been in use for 15 years at least. 

Adding to it, my daughter is gluten free.

BUT, these challenges pale in comparison to those who work in healthcare, or are frontliners … or lost jobs.

Like you, maybe, all the days of the week blend together. On Sundays I think "I can't take another week of this" and then Wednesday comes …. once I make it through Wednesday I seem to be ok.

So I've started doing a couple things.

One is making a list of hints to survive a global pandemic. The first one on the list is: if you take things out, put them away.

Six weeks in and I'm ready to get a dumpster (if you know what I mean.)

Two, don't expect to recognize me. I've given myself a haircut and gained 10 lbs from Quarantine cooking. The first week we cooked we made Thai. The second week we made some super hard cinnamon rolls (gluten free). The third week we made enough Salsa for everyone on the block. It's the fourth week now and we made gluten free brownies for half the fam and chocolate cupcakes for the other half.

We named our family group chat the Quaranteam and each day around 5 -- a transition time -- we play a game of cards. Early on we decided on teams that would do well together (after a failure of course) and we've stayed with those. It's sort of centering because we either start dinner before or after and then enjoy a meal together. In 20 years we have never eaten around this table this much -- all at the same time.

Once a week I take a few things to my parents 90 minutes away. Trying to teach my mom to order online has been a challenge. This is where grocery stores need a concierge to help older people. We don't do more than drop them off and talk from a distance, but it does get me out of the house once a week. 

I do have a question. Is anyone else having weird dreams? I'm having big, vivid strange dreams. Quaranmares if you will. I think I need more exercise and less chocolate. Tell me yours...

April 23, 2020 by Annie Stowe


Dawn Murray

Dawn Murray said:

We are right down the road from your mom and dad. If they need anything all you have to do is ask. I will gladly leave on the porch for them!


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