How We’re Leaving 2020 Better Than We Found It

“Take nothing but pictures, leave nothing but footprints, kill nothing but time…” –Motto of the Baltimore Grotto, origin unknown.

I think it’s safe to say that we’re all excited to leave 2020 behind! And I’ll be honest, this was the best year of my life in a lot of ways. I published eight books! I finally hired someone to help me make my website beautiful! I got to spend more time with my husband!

Don’t get me wrong, though, this year was full of disappoints for Steve and me, too. This year has been epically life-changing for everyone, but one thing that’s helped me get through those changes and disappointments is to think about the positives—they’re out there! This year’s round-up post is all about how we’re trying our best to leave 2020 better than we found it.

We Learned about Washing Our Hands

No, I don’t mean running cold water over your fingers for 0.45 seconds and calling it good. I’m talking about a full 30 seconds, soap, water as hot as you can stand it, and truly clean hands! I asked a nurse what she thought the best thing was about COVID this year, and she said, “People have finally learned to wash their hands.”

Good job, everyone!

Wear a mask, wash your hands!
More here: Your 2020 Travel Essentials

We Know More about Science

I like history, I like writing, I like reading; I am not a fan of math and science. But you know what? I learned a lot about science this year, and I was glad to be learning! We now know more about viruses, medications, therapeutics, vaccines, mRNA, and heck, we even know how to pronounce some prescriptions we’d never even heard of before.

And not only that, scientists also know more about science now. Necessity is the mother of invention, and we found out there are a lot of things we still need to know about the world we live in. Even the greatest minds realized this year that we still have a lot to learn.

Good job, everyone!

We now know the air on a plane is cleaner than the air in our homes!
More here: Why NOW is the Safest Time to Fly

We Learned to Appreciate the People in Our Lives

COVID has kept us too close to some and too far from others. But I think we appreciate them all a little more now than we did on January 1, 2020.

As for the ones we’ve been cramped up with in the same house or apartment since March, we’ve learned what they need to be their best, whether that’s personal space, alone time, exercise, music, more sleep, a certain diet, the degree to which they need coffee, etc. Even though it was hard at first, we eventually learned to respect, love, and appreciate each other better.

And for the ones COVID kept from us, we’ve learned how to be closer, however we can. Maybe it’s hand-written cards. Maybe it’s video chats. Maybe it’s an actual phone call. Maybe it’s seeing each other from 6 feet away and wearing a mask for their protection. We appreciate the people we haven’t been able to hug, and we’ll hug them tighter every chance we get from here on out.

Good job, everyone!

We got to see our families more often than ever this year!
More here: How We Take Travel for Granted (but Never Again)

We Learned How to Cook

My neighbor lost 30 pounds. How? She stopped going out to eat and learned how to cook, all thanks to COVID!

We’ve ordered take-out and delivery as much as possible to support our favorite small businesses, which is great, but most of us have taken our cooking, baking, and microwaving game to a whole new level. Have you cooked more because of COVID? Share your favorite recipe in the comments!

Good job, everyone!

Homemade ruby chocolate mousse (note: this will not help you lose the “COVID 19”)
Related: What We Ate in Quarantine

We Finally Tackled Those Projects

Renovations, painting walls, adding on—it’s been great to have a chance to really make those projects happen at home. Steve and I painted our guest bedroom and hung several pieces of art in there. A real estate friend of mine told me the #1 renovation happening is that people are putting up walls in formerly open concept spaces. Another set of friends is adding a massive porch and deck to their 80s fixer-upper! What projects have you attacked since March? Are you learning a language? Taking an online course? Writing that book?

Good job, everyone!

My sweet husband and I finally painted our guest room and hung up my kimono from Japan!
Keep reading: 7 Ways I’ve Used Quarantine for Good (and 5 I Didn’t Get to Yet)

We Learned How to Zoom

Confession: I had never used Zoom before COVID! Now, I’m not only totally on board with Zoom meetings, I’m grateful for the capability! Even my dad, who hates new technology, learned how to Zoom for his continuing education requirements for optometry. My church’s Bible studies are all on Zoom. My speaking engagements have been on Zoom and similar platforms. My web guy and I have only met on Zoom! We’re really good at Zoom now, y’all!

Great job, everyone!

You can Zoom from anywhere, even at sunset on the beach!
Related: What I Wish Would Stay the Same After COVID

We Got Creative

Necessity is the mother of invention, but creativity is its daddy, y’all. When the pandemic first got out of hand and we got our first 14-day quarantine “guidance,” as the CDC calls it, my first thought was about all the creative things that would come out of this. We’ve all had to think outside the box, pivot in our work lives, figure out how to workout without a gym, and then some, and we have been rocking it!

Good job, everyone!

What did you do to get creative in Quarantine?
Productivity keeps me out of trouble: How I Published 8 Books in 5 Months

We Found a Way

Along those same lines, whatever we’ve needed to do, we found a way. We cancelled our trips and did staycations instead. We worked from home when we thought we could never make it work. We started new ventures and found solutions where we thought none existed. We made it work. We found a way.

Good job, everyone!

We found a way to laugh, even during the pandemic!
Make it work: How to Prepare for Your First Trip Since the Pandemic Started

Do these apply to you? Are you leaving 2020 better than you found it? Comment below to tell all of us! And check out my Trip Planning Page for inspiration about making your travel dreams happen in 2021!

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Published by quickwhittravel

Hey there! I am an avid traveller and adventurer, and you're always welcome to join me! The things I love most are God, my husband Steve, and seeing new places! My favorite places include Sydney, Australia; Ise City, Japan; and Bergen, Norway--but there's always room for more favorite places!

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