The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Wednesday June 29th

Here are 20 activities to keep you busy while still practicing social distancing

<p>(From left) First years Jessie Zheng, Claire Liang, and Liya Chen, work on their bullet journals together in Lenoir Dining Hall at UNC-Chapel Hill on Monday, March 2, 2020.</p>
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(From left) First years Jessie Zheng, Claire Liang, and Liya Chen, work on their bullet journals together in Lenoir Dining Hall at UNC-Chapel Hill on Monday, March 2, 2020.

I've already gone through countless random listicle-style articles supposedly telling me fun, artistic and creative ways to keep myself occupied while staying indoors. 

Most of them haven't been catered to practicing social distancing due to the coronavirus, understandably. In fact, a surprisingly large number of them are for rainy day activities to keep toddlers from destroying the house. 

While making color-coded sensory bins and taping out indoor hopscotch sounds tempting, I thought making a grown-up edition might be better. 

So, here are 20 activities I've come up with to occupy my own time away from UNC, and each can be done while also adhering to social distancing and quarantine guidelines. 

1. Make a scrapbook, whether it’s with photos from UNC, studying abroad, furry friends, college life or long-neglected photos from years ago that you've been meaning to sort into some type of aesthetically pleasing display. I've gotten about a third of the way through my own scrapbook cataloging photos from my time abroad in London and I can attest to the fact that cutting out photos and writing captions is, in fact, time-consuming but enjoyable. 

2. Pick up that musical instrument from middle school or, better yet, learn how to play one you have no experience with! Tons of YouTube videos and free services are at your disposal, but you didn't need me to tell you that.

3. Make DIY or handmade graduation announcements, the personal touch will be fun for your family (and may even result in some graduation cash down the line). Not graduating any time soon? Handmade thank-you cards, thinking-of-you or just-because cards are also very sweet and fun to work on.

4. Try your hand at a family recipe or replicate a Tasty video you’ve had saved on your Instagram for months. Bonus points if you swap out ingredients since grocery stores have limited supplies in some places!

5. Make a motivational playlist on your streaming service of choice to prepare for classes starting up remotely. You'll thank yourself this time next week. 

6. Make an eco-friendly spring wreath with craft supplies that have been sitting around to freshen up your room and make your door more inviting and colorful. I'm pretty sick of looking at my snowflake dollar store door hanger when it's consistently been in the 50s, 60s and even 70s.

7. Scroll through your Pinterest board to find any long-lost DIY ideas you told yourself you'd get around to, even though you know it'll take six hours longer than you planned.

8. Make a throw blanket with old UNC tees or other sentimental but too-small clothing. You can never have too many blankets. 

9. Curl up with a tried and true book you loved to read as a pre-teen, or read one that’s been on your list forever and you’ve never gotten around to it. 

10. Take advantage of a free trial of Disney+ and binge watch a whole series you loved growing up (Pro tip: both seasons of "Jonas" are available!)

11. Put together your own film festival lineup and share virtually with friends. Share notes on why "Star Wars: Episode IX - The Rise of Skywalker" was, or was not, it.

12. Write something! Poetry, fiction, memoirs, journals keeping up with the days; anything you want!

13. Make jewelry using miscellaneous objects around the house. If people can make money on Etsy doing it, you can do it too.

14. Watch a live stream of a performance or take a virtual tour of a museum. Take a look at Broadway’s Living Room Concerts series, the Metropolitan Opera’s Live in HD programming or virtually tour the Louvre’s Egyptian Antiquities collections.

15. Set up a bullet journal for the 2020-2021 year, or the rest of the 2020 year if you haven’t made one already. Many UNC students already bullet journal to relieve stress!

16. Learn those tricky TikTok dances or, if you’re not into that, break out the Wii that hasn’t moved since 2013 and get a workout with Just Dance. I know you have it, and I know you remember how fun it is.

17. Break out a paint by the numbers booklet that your great aunt gave you for Christmas 2008. It’s probably buried under a Lisa Frank coloring book.

18. Start a blog, update that resumé, make a website, apply to jobs and internships or download and play around with the Adobe Creative Cloud and do it for your own projects that you’ll actually enjoy working on!

19. Make a virtual photo gallery (I prefer Google Photos since it’s free) and actually look back at the 20,000 photos you’ve had sitting on your iCloud account since your very first iPhone.

20. Listen to all of our office DJ playlists! All of our playlists were carefully cultivated and themed, and many have fun little introductions which will provide a few minutes of entertainment pre-playlist. 


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