Sunday, March 22, 2020


This week Aubrey had her one month checkup.

She has gained a few ounces and is up to 7 lb. 10 oz.

As for COVID-19 news, at the beginning of the week bars, pubs, and restaurants were closed except for drive-through/takeout.  Public places and public events were all cancelled/off limits.  Now we are in full lockdown state-wide, with other states under lockdown as well.  Throughout California all non-essential businesses are closed.  Schools are all closed.  Stay home except for essential outings like seeking medical help or food.

We are now fully converted over to virtual learning.  Evan and Hailey log in to class and their teachers teach the whole day as normal, just virtually.  Since I'm on paternity leave, I am able to help the kids stay on task and make sure they get their work done.

It's certainly an adjustment for us all, but I'm glad that WISH is so on top of things. They took 1 day off last Friday for the faculty to prepare for this new method of having school and we have transitioned pretty smoothly.  There is talk of schools staying closed till June.

On Monday businesses throughout the state closed down; my whole studio is now closed and working from home.  I'm still on leave till April 20 so we'll see how things go over this next month then I'll see about picking up my work computer and all that if we're still closed down.

Currently the California lockdown is set for a month, until April 19.  This week the guidelines for the lockdown have been rolling out and the amount of people that can get together has changed day to day.  First, we were limited to groups of 250, then it became a maximum of 12, until finally we were limited to just the immediate household.  Social distancing has been instituted, to keep people 6 feet apart from one another.  Violations are subject to a $200 fine.

17 states, including California (which has 1,700 cases), are on lockdown.  New York (with 15,000 cases) just instituted their lockdown.  Other states throughout the country like Washington State (which has more cases than California: 2,000 cases), are still not on lockdown.  Just yesterday the UK was added to the US travel ban, with cases rising there.

The elderly and sick are the most at risk but there have been reports of young people and children being hospitalized by the virus and even dying.

Sunday, March 15, 2020

Church During the Pandemic

With the Church buildings closed down we had our own home Church at the Ashcraft's.

It was nice to get together and still have the Sacrament and share a Gospel lesson.

Just a year and a half ago President Nelson announced a renewed focus on a home-centered, Church-supported focus to our Gospel study and learning. Now that prophetic direction is so much more impactful. We unknowingly had a year and a half to prepare for this.

Two years ago we received new direction in how to perform our Church visits: a new effort of ministering replaced home teaching and visiting teaching. Again, we had been prepared in advance without knowing that this pandemic was coming.

Harold, leading our lesson.

The kids were pretty good during Church, though it must be different having to listen and be reverent at home, with toys and puppies around.

Saturday, March 14, 2020

One Month Old

Today our little baby is 1 month old!

You just sleep, Aubrey; leave the picture-taking to me.

Aw, she's not a newborn anymore.

So cute, all bunched up

 And then we bring out the fuzzy blanket for more cute pictures.

She's such a good, little baby.

Friday, March 13, 2020

Coronavirus Pandemic

This has been a crazy week.  So much has changed just from one day to the next.

A month ago, while we were in the hospital awaiting the birth of baby Aubrey, among other topics we talked about the cruise ships that were under quarantine from the spread of the Coronavirus, now known as COVID-19, spread from Wuhan, China.

Since then China has gone on lockdown (currently at 81,160 cases) but it has already spread to other countries.  At the beginning of this week the Church and many other organizations and companies were discouraging world travel.  On Monday Italy issued a national quarantine (now at 17,660 cases). The Church issued 3 letters on Wednesday announcing no public attendance of General Conference, virtual training in place of MTC reporting for Provo and England, and large meetings like Stake Conferences cancelled come Monday for Asia, Europe, and North America.

The very next day the Church cancelled all Church meetings and activities worldwide, effective immediately.  The NBA first announced no more fan attendance of games; the next day the whole basketball season was cancelled, along with all other professional sports as groups of 250 or more have been prohibited.

Yesterday it was announced that flights between the US and Europe are being banned.  And now Temples (at least the LA Temple) will be closed except for living ordinances by appointment Fridays and Saturdays only, restricted to 8 guests.

This week people here have been storming the grocery stores in panic.  I went to Costco on Monday to have my new tires checked and there was a pretty large group waiting outside for the store to open.  Costco, like many other grocery stores, was already out of toilet paper and bottled water.  People are going crazy; they're creating scarcity from their panic buying.

I bought a few things while I was at Costco on Monday but by today I figured I should brave the crowds while there were still groceries left to buy.  Just trying to find parking was crazy.  The checkout lines stretched all the way to the back of the store at an hour-long wait.  Kendra hit up Trader Joe's and the 99 Cent Store so we could divide up our grocery lists and get what we could find due to shortages.

Liquid soap, hand sanitizer, and baby wipes are also hard to find now.  There are reports of people, not just hoarding, but profiteering: reselling these items at huge markups online.  When caught, their Amazon and Ebay accounts are being closed down and they're now being fined and forced to give away the rest of their stash.

Throughout the week various universities announced shutting down or moving entirely to online classrooms.  Mid week I heard about LMU when the Rock, Roll, & Run 5K was cancelled, which Evan and I were going to participate in.  The latest news is that all LAUSD schools are closed starting Monday.  Today I picked up school laptops and materials from Evan and Hailey's classrooms.  They will log into a virtual classroom for daily instruction while WISH is closed.  I know that a lot of families have both parents working while the kids are at school; schools closing is going to impact a lot of families as well as a lot of businesses.

So that's my recap of the events of the week.  The world has turned upside down.

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Aubrey's First Doctor Appointment

Today we took Aubrey for a visit to the cardiologist.

A heart murmur was detected before we were discharged from the hospital, so today we were scheduled to come in for a checkup.

She just wanted to be held.

To check her heart, Aubrey was hooked up to all these connectors. She did not like that at all. And we had to hold her as still as possible with her fussing and wanting to get away.

Good job, Aubrey. Now you can snuggle with Mama.

Monday, March 9, 2020

Plenty of Pajamas

She was not in the mood for pictures.

But it was fine once she got hold of a passie.

Sleepy time.

Another day, another pair of pajamas.

Such a little cutie.