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Other than a masked visit to Whole Foods during senior hour and the drive through at the pharmacy, my post Covid schedule revolves around working out, writing a memoir and keeping Annie entertained, or maybe it’s the other way around. Annie is keeping me entertained. 

Each time I take Annie for a walk, I feel like I’m putting my ever-thinning bones at risk. 

I wish we could enjoy walking together but when she sees another dog, or a squirrel, which is every time we walk, I fear for the safety of my bones. She can spot a squirrel at 50 paces, and then without warning, she proceeds to drag me… at high speed… to the last place its furry little butt touched the ground. 

Two weeks ago I became emotionally invested in one of Annie’s “toys.” Mr. Lizard had been living outside on my daybed, and I was trying to detour Annie to another part of the courtyard so she wouldn’t see him. My plan was to take the cover off the daybed and replace it with colorful pillows and throws so he would blend in better, but when it began to rain, my plan fell by the wayside. This morning I found Mr. Lizard… I regret to inform you… I failed him. 

I feel awful about it.

In light of Mr. Lizard’s demise I feel bad about abruptly switching gears, but… I have also been spending time texting and talking with friends like photographer, Noel Sutherland. If you haven’t seen his stunning images of my interviews with supermodels Dayle Haddon and Nancy Donahue and the gorgeous photographs of Lauren Ezersky here on 1010ParkPlace, you might take a look. Together with Mark Grischke, former Creative Director and Fashion Director of ForbesLife, we had such fun doing them! Oh, the doors we opened!

Noel told me about an Instagram page he thought I’d like. Since Covid began, Jeny Howorth, a top model in the 80’s, has been doing quirky offbeat videos. I love her because she is so real. No attempt at pretense plus she whispers most of her videos. 

This morning it was my turn to give Noel an Instagram suggestion: The Leslie Jordan. He’s an actor all of you will recognize. He’s charming and sweet and so funny! A throwback to an era we need to remember. Thank you, Leslie for the laughs! Please keep them coming!

Now… about my workouts… Because I don’t want my thighs and upper arms to look like I’m the big sister of the Pillsbury Doughboy, I do a daily workout of two miles on my treadmill, squats, lunges, 10 pound arm weights, stretches and yoga. It takes me about an hour and a half. My biggest problem with working out at home has been overcoming the boredom of walking on the treadmill. I would rather get down on my hands and knees and clean baseboards… I have been doing that as well. 

Unless I’m hiking or on a mission like walking 40 blocks in New York City to buy the sheet music to “The Great American Songbook” as a birthday present for a girlfriend, walking for exercise bores me silly. Thank goodness I’ve found great things to watch on YouTube like Linda Vater’s gardening videos. She is a superstar and so is her yard! She’s lived in her home for over 30 years and has done everything herself. Wait until you see the rest of her yard!

I’m also listening to writer, Linda Sivertsen’s Beautiful Writers Podcast. Linda’s guests range from Tom Hanks, Cheryl Strayed and Laura Munson of Willas’s Grove… (Have you read this book yet? It’s the only book that has ever made me cry, and I’m not saying this because she is my friend.)… to Candice Bergen and Poet Laureate of the United States, Joy Harjo. You will enjoy Linda Sivertsen’s podcast even if you’re not a writer or interested in writing. They are intimate entertaining conversations. I love them so much!

So tell me friends. What are you doing to entertain yourself during Covid? Stay safe and well.

Love, Brenda


  • Hilda Smith May 16, 2020 at 7:27 am

    Hi darling Brenda I always look forward to your posts. Sorry about Mr Lizard…you did your best. You are putting lockdown to good use and I will look at your recommendations, as soon as I write this. I wrote a similar post two weeks back…xxx

    • 1010ParkPlace May 17, 2020 at 2:32 pm

      Hi Hilda! I read your great post and left you a message. I think everyone I talk with is doing so well. Brava to all of us! xoxox, Brenda

  • Andrea May 16, 2020 at 7:27 am

    Please consider teaching Annie how to trot on your treadmill. Our dog loves it! (He is also a terror to hand walk outside.)

    • 1010ParkPlace May 17, 2020 at 2:35 pm

      Hi Andrea, My trainer suggested the same thing, but Annie won’t even stay in the same room as the treadmill. Part of it I think is because I kept her from going upstairs when she was a puppy because I discovered she was peeing on the carpet. I put a guard gate at the foot of the stairs. Now it goes against everything she’s been taught to come upstairs where the treadmill is. xoxo, Brenda

  • Deborah May 16, 2020 at 8:01 am

    Hi Brenda! Good to see your post in my email box this morning. I too LOVE Leslie Jordan, he makes me laugh every day. I wonder if he realizes what a bright light he is to everyone who follows him!? As a southerner I can relate to him so well. This quarantine is hard on everybody but we don’t have much choice do we? My husband, forty year old daughter and I live together here on our farm in Virginia with our horses and barn cat, and three young ladies who live in our tenant house. Everyone rides but my daughter and myself but we are all outside, gardening, sunbathing (daughter) and we all stick to our workout routines regardless of what is going on and we cook everyday. We have been doing the same thing for 21/2 months and yeah it is getting old but none of us want to get sick. We are planning our annual trip to the beach in two weeks but we will still be self-quarantining there in our beach house but the view will change at least. Take care and there is light at the end of the tunnel but we have to get to that point first!

    • 1010ParkPlace May 17, 2020 at 2:38 pm

      It sounds like you have an ideal place to stay during our self quarantine, Deborah! Wish I could join you. While I don’t ride either, I love the land and farms and being in the country. I miss my ranch in the Texas Hill Country and think of it often. Continue to stay safe and enjoy your time at the beach. xoxox, Brenda

  • Barbara May 16, 2020 at 10:20 am

    What a welcome sight to see your name in my email this morning! I’ve missed you Brenda and so happy to hear you’re doing well. That Annie is a character. Love how she runs around with her bowl in her mouth. My cat is the most unsocial even for a cat. I’m eating and eating and getting to sleep late and then not sleeping. Need to get back to a better schedule but am not doing it. You’ve inspired me to try harder! Write more when you can. We miss you.

    • 1010ParkPlace May 17, 2020 at 2:42 pm

      So great to see you here, Barbara! It’s hard to make ourselves stay on a schedule when we don’t have any accountability. At night I have two alarms set on my phone, an hour apart, to remind me to take my meds. The second alarm I sometimes postpone for an hour or so, but for the most part, I’m good about them, and the second alarm reminds me to get ready for bed. Be well, friend. xoxo, Brenda

  • Diane May 16, 2020 at 10:47 am

    I’ve missed you, my friend! I’m so glad to hear you are not only surviving these strange times but thriving as well. Poor Mr. Lizard. I picture him happily sunning on some stunning cushions out on God’s sundeck.
    Leslie made me laugh out loud. And made me just a little happier about myself! 😉
    Stay healthy! <3

    • 1010ParkPlace May 17, 2020 at 2:46 pm

      Diane!!! Love seeing your face in my comments! Thank you for the mental image of Mr. Lizard’s new home. Would you believe I even had a “conversation” with Annie about he was lizard was MY lizard, and she needed to leave him alone and go find her own lizard. LOL! Of course all she heard was “Blah, blah, blah, Annie. Blah, blah blah.” Glad you enjoyed Leslie. He is a treasure for sure. Stay safe, my friend. xoxox, Brenda

  • Colleen Fuller May 16, 2020 at 12:08 pm

    As a resident of Lowell, MA, I enjoyed reading Nancy Donahue’s interview. Her mother, Nancy L. Donahue, is also an inspiring woman. She’s dedicated her life to giving to the community and local organizations. Years ago she launched the nationally recognized Merrimack Repertory Theatre in Lowell. She’s the chairwoman of the Board of Trustees for the Whistler House Museum of Art in the city, which is the birthplace of artist James McNeill Whistler. I miss your blog, Brenda, so it was a special treat to see it in my inbox today.

    • 1010ParkPlace May 17, 2020 at 2:53 pm

      Colleen, You are a special treat in my inbox today as well. I didn’t know that about Nancy’s mom. I recently saw a photograph of her, and she’s beautiful. I appreciated Nancy’s candor when she told me how her mother was responsible for motivating her to stop using cocaine when she was modeling. Like so many of the women… and men… Nancy and I both know, they were using cocaine. It was a part of the NY fashion scene. Every week I think about writing a blog, but writing my book is still taking up most of my time. xoxox, Brenda

  • Rebecca Forstadt Olkowski May 18, 2020 at 10:23 am

    I will put that podcast on my listening list. It sounds amazing! Your house looks like a beautiful place to isolate in. My dogs also keep me entertained and exercised. I don’t know what I would do without them.

    • 1010ParkPlace May 25, 2020 at 11:02 am

      Thank you, Rebecca! xoxox, Brenda

  • LA CONTESSA May 18, 2020 at 1:06 pm

    Theo brings me a small RAT every night………
    The other day it was a LIZARD……..SO BEAUTIFUL!I managed to get it to the HYDRANGEA POT HOSPITAL!HE had blood in his head so I do not know if he made it or not AFRAID to go LOOK!
    What am I doing you ask…………..I’m NOT WALKING!HATE WALKING!
    I scroll through INSTA then hit the computer………….answer and respond THEN think about what I SHOULD DO that can take TWO HOURS!
    I feel like all Im doing is sleeping and cooking dinner!
    I have mastered the VACUUM!
    Polished some silver………silver polish took a month to arrive seems SAFEWAY does not carry any MORE!YOU Know WHY THAT IS……….
    LOVE THAT LESLIE…………..makes me SMILE and LAUGH……….
    IT will be interesting to see what happens with Wisconsin and all……

    • 1010ParkPlace May 25, 2020 at 11:29 am

      Elizabeth, It seems as though I’ve become a champion for all the lizards who live here. If I see one in the front of the house I tell it to RUN to the neighbor’s yard. Poor things! Rats I can do without. Not sure we have any although the news did a story yesterday that because the restaurants are closed, the rats are seeking food in nearby neighborhoods! Eeek!!! Texas is open for business, but no one is following the rules, so I’m still in self lockdown. Just ordered deliver from Whole Foods. xoxox, Brenda

  • bonnie sachs May 18, 2020 at 7:04 pm

    somehow there is always something to do…after sleeping late:) mostly, i’ve been dressing up with no place to go, for instagram. and following up and finishing all sorts of time guzzling projects. being responsible about masking up and distancing…which is more than i can say for so many. very frustrating!

    • 1010ParkPlace May 25, 2020 at 11:31 am

      Bonnie I’m frustrated with people who don’t mask and social distance as well which is mainly the young people. Saw a 20-something female on the news the other day who said “We want to have fun. YOU’RE not letting us have fun.” Grrrr…. xoxox, Brenda

  • Mithra Ballesteros May 19, 2020 at 12:46 pm

    Wonderful meandering post full of delights (Leslie Jordan is a hoot!) and surprises (actually I knew Mr. Lizard didn’t stand a chance.). Last night during dinner I noticed a shimmery blue stone on the patio. It was a bird’s head. Which is to say that I am beyond overwhelmed here on our new farm — up to my neck in agri-everything. But I’ll add the podcast to my listening list while pulling weeds. Best to you!

    • 1010ParkPlace May 25, 2020 at 11:34 am

      Mithra, I have no doubt you are busy from dawn till dusk. When you have a place like yours, getting everything in good shape is one thing, but then keeping them that way is another. So much work. I know!! xoxox, Brenda

  • jeannette May 29, 2020 at 9:35 am

    Maybe you’ve already tried this Brenda, but the only way I could walk our sweet but crazy golden retriever was by putting a” gentle lead” on her. Have you heard of these? It took awhile for her to get use to it but she did. I would put it on her for short periods of time in the house beforehand so she could get use to it. The craziness didn’t go away lol but the walks were much nicer for both of us!

  • 1010parkplace June 3, 2020 at 2:25 pm

    Thank you Jeannette for the suggestion! I saw a photo online and will check it out further. Short of having the young woman resume walking her when it’s Covid safe I definitely need something. Thanks again!! xoxox, Brenda

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