• Melanie Newdick

Getting Through Self Isolation

Updated: Apr 4, 2020

I have had asthma in the past and whilst I don't need inhalers on a regular basis anymore nor do I use a daily preventer any longer I am taking an extra cautious approach to Coronavirus. (This article explains why I am taking this approach.)

I have also been hoping for a countrywide lockdown sometime soon but in the absence of that I am taking extra care. As with anything I like to have a plan so having adjusted cashflows, goals and other planners to take account of the fact I have no work whatsoever the next job was to look at how to deal with being physically distant but socially connected. Here is what I have found;


I love Zumba and my favourite group is TML Zumba which have really great videos, all for free on YouTube. I just have to make sure I close the curtains so no one can see me looking like such an idiot!

Improving My Language Skills

I am going to put in some proper time to learning language – this website has 1000 words in lots of languages with clips of how they sound.

Singing Classes

As some of you may know I love to sing and this website promises to help you make significant progress with your singing or your money back, plus it’s monthly fee is about £30

Home Malone Choir

I love singing but have been too shy to join a Choir but no longer - the lovely Gareth Malone is doing an online choir project!

Online Dancing Lessons

I also love to dance and this online dance studio has classes in street, popping, break dancing (maybe not!) and hip hop. Their monthly fee is about £20 too.

Zoom Video Conferencing

With individual use being free this is a great way to conduct business meetings, virtual coffee mornings and much more.

Free Learning

The Open University has some amazing free courses

Reading and Watching Inspiration

For this year I am working my way through President Obama’s reading and watching list. It’s been fab for getting me to read and see some new things – Obama loved Fleabag!

Free Library Stuff

If you haven’t checked out our lovely Highland Libraries site for a while they have lots of free audiobooks to borrow and you can also get a whole host of magazines online for free as well which you can download to your Kindle or tablet for easy reading


I've ordered lots of seeds and plug plants to ensure I can use this time to get my garden looking extra lovely.

Paint by Numbers

I have ordered an adult paint by numbers kit which, for clarity, does not involve painting an 'adult' picture - it's just a bit more difficult than the junior version of these kits. Can't wait to get started!


Oh my goodness - I don't think I am going to make it out of the lounge. I love Britbox already and am enjoying catching up on some feel good classic comedies from my youth. It also has Joan Hickson Miss Marples, Poirots, Shetlands, Veras and so much more. It is £5.99 a month and there is a free 30 day trial at present. You do not need a TV licence to watch Britbox.

What I am Watching and Reading;


The Five: The Untold Lives of the Women Killed by Jack The Ripper

This is a truly fascinating book - the women came from such different backgrounds and were not prostitutes as you may have thought. This is a great look at the everyday lives of people in the 1800s.

Chicken Soup for the Soul

I love these books. If you haven't come across them they are collections of stories designed to inspire, uplift. You can dip in and dip out of them and read them in any order.


I stumbled across this blog that says it looks to help people move away from herd thinking. It is refreshing.

The Guardian

I have taken out a subscription to the Guardian. They have good coverage of the Coronavirus crisis.


Netflix Self Made

This is the story of the first female millionaire in the US who was Madame C J Walker. It is a really inspiring and fascinating story - perfect for now.

Netflix Tiger King

This is without doubt one of the craziest things I have ever watched. It is the story of Joe Exotic who owned a private zoo in the US with around 250 tigers, lions etc. It is an insight into a world I knew nothing about, private zoos and animal breeding in the US but it touches on so many other themes too. It really is bonkers.

National Theatre Live - These are not saved so if you miss them they are gone

At 7pm on Thursdays the National Theatre is going to be screening productions live on their YouTube channel with their first one being James Corden in One Man Two Guvnors on the 2nd of April. I watched this and it was fabulous. Next up on the 9th of April is Jane Eyre.

Wildlife Webcams

I totally forgot about these until I was sorting out my bookmarks.

Getting ready to keep an eye out for any Ospreys returning to Loch Garten via the RSPB webcam which for now has a camera feed from Chichester Peregrines.

Absolutely love this whole series of webcams, there is everything from birds, bears, sharks, fish, kittens, rescue dogs and much more. It really is amazing to look through and one of my favourites are the hummingbirds which are currently nesting.

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