Things that Have Brought Me Joy During the Pandemic


Although the pandemic has had very real and negative effects on the entire world, it’s offered many of us the opportunity to reevaluate our priorities. For some of us, it’s a new hobby or spending extra time with loved ones. For me, it’s been both of those things and more. Here are a few things that have brought me joy while existing in a global pandemic.

Nurturing My House Plants

My love for plants developed out of a finals week panic and desire to try something new. In the midst of a small breakdown, I gave myself two choices to change up my dorm situation: buy a plant or get a fish. Four hours later, driving back and forth between several plant nurseries, a Lowes, and a Walmart, I became a plant dad according to my favorite coffee mug. I started out with a succulent garden to see if I could even keep a plant alive. I painted their pot yellow, my favorite color, to make them feel at home and have had them for over a year now!

Photo of my succulent garden.

Testing my green thumb, I’ve since expanded my collection to plants that require more attention and maintenance. My current collection consists of my succulent garden, sunflowers, forget-me-nots, daisies, a moss rose garden, and an asparagus fern. With nothing but a failed attempt to grow a bonsai tree in my way, practicing self-control in efforts to not turn my dorm room into a greenhouse has been one of my biggest accomplishments yet!

Creating Podcasts

Savanna and I have been creating content together since my first year at Drake. She’s my DMP buddy and we’ve worked on radio shows, podcasts, and video packages together for class and just for fun. This year, the radio show has been difficult to do, but we discovered a new love for podcasting! 

Photo of my co-host, Savanna, and I.

Focusing on powerful female artists in the music industry, we’ve had a lot of fun discussing our love for music and female success! We’ve covered Lizzo, Ariana Grande, and Demi Lovato. We plan to cover Doja Cat, Victoria Monet, and Taylor Swift in the future! We’ve had a lot of fun covering a topic we’re passionate about without the added stress of being live. I’m excited to see what future projects we’ll work on together!

Taking Drives

I’ve always been one to enjoy long drives to destress. In a pandemic, I’ve really come to appreciate the freedom and sense of escape such drives can bring. Especially with good company. My good friend Allyn shares my love for cruising around and her bright red Mustang convertible makes it even more enjoyable.

Photo of Allyn and I cruising in her mustang at sunset.

Whether we drive around Des Moines or travel outside city limits to new places, we always have the best time. Even running errands becomes more fun with the top down and a great playlist. With both of us being RAs and busy students, sometimes we just need to get off campus to relax. Most of our favorite destinations are no longer an option due to social distancing, but this has only made me appreciate the simple pleasure of taking a drive. 

Exploring New Trails

As discussed in my previous posts, many of my favorite off-campus activities aren’t an option during a pandemic. But one still remains. Taking hikes or walks outside has been a safe and fulfilling activity I’ve really enjoyed. I’ve always enjoyed getting out in nature, but recently it’s been my go-to. And it’s always better with some friends. 

Photo of my friends Allyn, Sabrina, Austin, and I walking the High Trestle Trail Bridge.

In my previous blog, I mentioned my love for the High Trestle Trail Bridge. This year, I’ve made it my mission to bring some of my favorite people to enjoy one of my most treasured escapes. Similar to taking drives, creating podcasts, or adopting plants, exploring new places is something I’ve enjoyed sharing with those closest to me. 

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