Eight students’ ideas for staying sane and sound while stuck at home

Spice up your quarantine with some of these fun activities. GRAPHIC BY DANA CAPISTRANO/GRAPHICS CENTER

It is now a few weeks into quarantine, and most of us have already watched all of “Love is Blind” on Netflix, tried cooking, and spent hours mindlessly playing online games. So, what do we do now? Students in USF’s arts, reporting, and reviews class share their ideas for staying entertained during what their professor, and Foghorn advisor, Teresa Moore calls “The Great Containment.”

 “We’re trying to contain the spread of the virus by keeping a good distance from each other and staying home,” Moore said.

Repaint old furniture

You’ve already binged every popular (or obscure) Netflix series, you’ve deep cleaned every square inch of your house, you even tried cooking dinner for your entire family. What’s next? Try going outside and repainting some old furniture with fresh, happy colors. You can get some fresh air while expressing your creativity and updating some of the space you’ll be in for the foreseeable future.

Bring succulents back to life

If you bought succulents but have since neglected to care for them, try bringing them back to life. Succulents require very little attention, so there’s a good chance those plants are still alive. Try propagating them: take a healthy leaf off the stem, place it on some soil, spritz it with some water, and over the course a few weeks, you’ll notice the leaf growing its own little plant. Cute, right?

— Michaela Duncanson is a (year) media studies major.

Learn to handstand

If you’re like me and want, but don’t have, the patience to take up yoga, teach yourself to do a handstand. It’s exercise, but fun! Once you’ve mastered the handstand, you’ll have a new party trick. There are plenty of tips, guides, and videos out there to keep it safe. The only equipment needed? A wall. 

— Mardy Harding is a junior international studies major and journalism minor.

Make playlists for loved ones

Make playlists for people you love. Although they’re not as exciting to give to someone as a physical mixtape, in the time of social distancing, sending a link to a collection of songs is a great and fun way to let loved ones know that you’re thinking of them.

— Alexa Mancilla is a senior media studies major.

Hike or bike

Exploring the outdoors for a hike or bike ride is a healthy activity while still practicing social distancing. Areas like Seward Park in South Seattle have more than 300 acres of paths and trails. Look up fun trails in your area and go explore!

— Isabel Maschmedt is a sophomore media studies major.


The main thing we would probably all love to do right now is to go outside and travel to beautiful destinations, seeing unbelievable sights. While this can’t be a reality, you can paint your way there. There are countless paint-by-number canvases that you can order on Amazon, capturing landscapes far and wide. It’s relaxing, cheap, and fun — what can be better than that?

Play Monopoly

When was the last time you played a game of Monopoly? Not the kind where you rage-quit and call it early, but the kind where you go from start to finish and show no mercy? I can’t remember, and maybe neither can you. Setting up a serious game is something that rarely happens (at least for me), and this is a perfect time. Buy Boardwalk and start your reign of terror. Trust me, it’s fun.

— Haley Palmer is a junior English major.

Watch Bon Appétit videos

Bon Appétit (no relation to USF’s catering service) Magazine’s Claire Saffitz, Brad Leone, and the rest of its test kitchen staff have kept me laughing and learning throughout this quarantine. Their quirky video series “Gourmet Makes” and “It’s Alive” are the perfect activity. If you are looking to brush up on cooking knowledge or are simply craving some adventure from the safety of your couch, check out their video page or podcast.

Explore Disney+

Revisit the best days of your childhood with some old favorites on the streaming service Disney+. For the real nostalgists, check out the “Out of the Vault” selection, no VHS player needed.

— Faith Quigley is a junior media studies major. 

Pick up a needle and thread

Open up that sewing kit — oh, you thought it was a tin of cookies? My apologies. Sewing is an invaluable tool for anyone looking to save worn but beloved clothes, to tailor outfits that don’t fit quite right, or as a fun hobby! YouTube has plenty of tutorials for beginners and experts alike. Plus, there are plenty of free patterns online so you can make a little plush to keep you company during social distancing.

Watch TV made for kids

Some people get away from their problems by watching dramas, but the tension can remind you of what you’re dealing with. In times of crisis, I turn back to the world of children’s television. Try “Adventures in Moominvalley,” based on Tove Jansson’s idyllic comics featuring creatures called Moomins. All episodes can be found on YouTube. If you’re feeling nostalgic, “Reading Rainbow” is available on Amazon Prime Video. LeVar Burton’s singing somehow makes everything better. Or, revisit one of your own childhood favorites!

— Eli Ramos is a senior biology major and journalism minor.

Spring cleaning

Why not do some spring cleaning while everyone is stuck at home? Light a candle and turn on some music. It’s a good idea to frequently disinfect your household during these times, so wipe down those countertops and tables. Clean out your cluttered closets, too, by setting aside some things to donate such as clothes, shoes, household items, and books.

— Destiny Velazquez is a senior media studies major and journalism minor.


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