Pitching in

How are you faring in quarantine?

Are you doing okay?

Better question: What are you up to?

Around here, we are doing what we can to pitch in. It is just something we do. We pitch in. When the Cedar River floods, people come from miles around to fill and stack sandbags.

When a farmer gets sick, injured or God forbid, dies, the neighbors gather to harvest the crop.

Even when there is no crisis, people pick up trash along the roadside or raise funds for medical research.

Again, it is just something we do.

So this is what we are doing now.


The nursing home where my grand-daughter works ran out of face masks, so we started making them.  The home-made ones are not up to medical standards – but they are better than nothing.  Yesterday, we learned that the nursing home in another town doesn’t have them either, so we are making more. Hopefully, the approved ones will soon be available and our crude attempts will not be necessary.

On the same note, my son’s distillery converted its process to make hand-sanitizer which he and his partner are handing out to their local first responders, hospitals, nursing homes – and the public.  For now, they are simply asking for donations to keep the product flowing.


This weekend, the congressional representative for the district that covers the distillery, Angie Craig, stopped by to hand out sanitizer.


It seems everyone is pitching in.

As for Scooter and I, well, we are still practicing the same social distancing that we have been at for the last six years.


Update: a number of people have asked for the name of the distillery.  It is Loon Liquors in Northfield, MN.

Author: Almost Iowa


44 thoughts on “Pitching in”

  1. Good news from Iowa! Keep up the good work as long as you can.
    My daughters gave me orders to isolate. Even so, I take a short walk everyday. The only people I see out are folks taking their pets for a walk. We keep our distance and wave hello.
    I gave blood last week. I feel an obligation. The rest of my family is deferred because they were living in Europe during the last scare. Plus I’m O-, universal donor.

  2. Kudos to you and the family for pitching in. And keeping your distance. Which is basically all I can contribute at the moment. That and keeping in touch by phone and email and blogging.

    Love the Almost Iowa countryside.

    1. I was initially reluctant to write this, because fate has to knock on one’s shoulder and I didn’t want anyone feeling bad at not having the same opportunities. Staying home and staying in touch is pitching in.

  3. Applause for your family’s contribution to our making it through this, and thank you as always for the smile I enjoyed while reading your posts. I received this yesterday, but like a good wine, I savored it for this morning so I could start the day off on a positive note. Stay safe.

    1. I hope you are able to get in some gardening. We had a beautiful day yesterday in the Midwest and today looks good too. So we pulled out the rakes and cleared the straw out of the flower beds. Last night we lit the straw in the fire pit and cracked open a bottle of wine to watch it burn.

      Life is good.

  4. You need to share the name of your son’s business. He’s part of a growing movement around the country, and to be commended. Around here, it’s Tito’s Vodka that’s really stepping up. They’re located in Austin, and are large enough to make some really big contributions — including a whole lot of hand sanitizer — but every contribution helps.

    Oddly enough, I’m still working, thanks to my outdoor “office” and almost total isolation. Being on a boat’s an approved activity for these times, even if I’m sanding and varnishing rather than sailing!

    1. I have updated the post with the name of the distillery. Mark is president of the Minnesota Distiller’s Guild and from what he has told me, a number of distillers are stepping up. They are using a formula published by the World Health Organization (WHO).

  5. You and Scooter’s social distancing looks really nice.
    I lived off-grid in Northern Alaska for 14 years so like yourself I know isolation.

    You do realize that your blog and many others
    are what keeps many of us sane during these ‘shelter in place times’
    and your words brighten our days… thanks.

  6. Awesome, I’ve loved seeing how many people are pitching in 🙂 I’m pitching in by trying extra hard to keep people’s spirits up. My husband and I are writing virtual trivia nights for our family and friends, sending out positive messages to people, and just trying to keep a little light shining around us.

    1. Bread is good. There is NOTHING like the scent of fresh baked bread. My mom used to make it all the time and I would filch a bit of the rising dough to eat. Kind of like raiding raw cookie dough. I loved the taste but I would be burping yeast for days. 🙂 🙂

  7. It may be hard to find the silver lining to the grey cloud that’s over the world right now. But the things you’ve shared are being done by good people across the country. The commitment and resilience of our medical providers, the acts of care and kindness from everyday people give me hope that we will get through this.

    1. Oh, we will get through this okay. Our ancestors got through a whole lot worse and they didn’t have the internet…… or maybe that is why they got through it. 🙂

  8. Good for you, Greg. We’ve seen a lot of that around here as well: people helping people from a distance. And good for your son! Sounds like a bit of the ‘old man’ has rubbed off on him. –Curt

    1. People are at their best when they are challenged. It brings to mind one of Kurt Vonnegut’s great quotes

      I can think of no more stirring symbol of man’s humanity to man than a fire engine

      That says it all, though he might want to amend that to the volunteer fire department.

      1. I’m reminded of my dad, Greg. He was a volunteer fireman for all of the years we were growing up. He was an electrician. The fire alarm would go off and he’d be running for the fire station. It was his job to be one of the first people on the scene to shut down the electricity to the burning property so the other firemen could fight the fire safely. –Curt

      1. We rather feel the worst is to come, still, as I’m sure most of you do, too. Personally, we’re hunkering down as far as possible, although we have to go for supplies occasionally, and we’re allowed walks. Thankfully, we’re right on the edge of town, so that makes it safer and easier.

  9. Good for you! Pitching in is about all any of us can do. I have no problem being at home but don’t like the feeling of being passive. I cannot sew but I can share comment love among bloggers so I figure that’s better than sitting around twiddling my thumbs. Ever onward, eh?

  10. You all sound busy. Scooter too. My biggest problem with social distancing is not being allowed to hug neighbors’ dogs. So please can you give Scooter a hug from me.

    1. I’ll tell Scooter you wrote that. BTW, he looks adorable – but after he rolls in the remains of a dead skunk, he doesn’t smell too adorable.

  11. That’s wonderful. Thanks so much for doing this! In an atmosphere of doom and gloom it’s people like you and your family who give us hope!

    1. The hardest thing to do is to not do anything. I know that the TV don’t watch itself, so I’ve been pitching in there, but it is also good to do something useful (for a change). 🙂

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