In Isolation

For the past few weeks, I have been mostly in isolation. I drove to get tested twice; Mr. Mickey and my sister have left food at my door. Many have asked me questions about being in isolation for so long. Today, I’ll share some of the ways I’ve coped.

Dresses are easy and comfortable. I have worn a dress with a flat pair of sandals almost daily. Here is a similar one. Here are similar sandals.

I haven’t been up to the task of putting on makeup very often, but I have gotten dressed in street clothes most days. Soaking in a daily hot bath with Epsom Salts (here) offered relief from the body aches. I do not tolerate medications well, so I did not take any over the counter pain relievers. When we’ve had sunny days, I sat outside on the deck for a few minutes.

Since childhood, books have been my dear friends. I am thankful that I have stacks of them throughout my house to enjoy. My passions are gardens, classical architecture, interior design, and travel, so I have collected a variety of beautiful books. These are a few of my favorites.

Mr. Mickey has brought chicken soup, watermelon slices, chicken sandwiches, and vegetarian dishes to my door many times. He is my hero!

I still had a few frozen vegetables on hand, and my sister and her husband left Georgia peaches for me. My parents sent fresh vegetables from their garden several times.

I couldn’t finish my vegetarian dinner from the night before, so I warmed up the leftovers for breakfast and added some herbed potatoes. I cut fresh from the garden potatoes into similar sized cubes and cover them with water to simmer until they are tender but not too soft. When I can insert a toothpick into a piece, I remove them from the heat and run cold water over them to stop the cooking process. Drain, cover, and refrigerate the extra for later. I reheat them on low heat with a little butter and olive oil. Before serving them, I stir in a tablespoon of fresh herbs, a sprinkle of garlic salt, and fresh ground pepper. Terragon is my favorite herb.

Each time I have shopped for groceries for the past few months, I have picked up a couple of cans of beans and canned or frozen wild fish. I also keep plenty of unsalted butter, olive oil, and balsamic vinegar, as well as many dried herbs and seasonings on hand.

One of my favorite desserts is a piece of dark chocolate with a few raw unsalted nuts. I always have a stack of these chocolate bars in my pantry. Look for 80% cacao and higher for the health benefits. Pecans, walnuts, and brazil nuts are always in my refrigerator.

On Saturday, I put on some makeup and gave myself a pedicure. It was a tremendous emotional boost.

None of the clothing shown is new. The jeweled sandals are here. A similar shirt is here. Similar pants are here.

My second test result has also come back as negative for SARS-Cov-2 (COVID-19). My doctor’s office continues to monitor me closely to ensure that I haven’t developed pneumonia. With two negative nasal swab tests, I will now schedule an in-person visit to get a full lab workup performed and a COVID-19 antibody test. False-negative tests are not uncommon.

July 14, 2020 update: I have pneumonia now. That is another symptom of the virus. The Health Department here doesn’t have or administer the antibody test. My doctor continues to monitor me as a COVID-19 patient.

This article about a newer variant of COVID-19 discusses how the virus is mutating. If you are sick, isolate yourself. Call your doctor to discuss your illness and follow their instructions.

Here is another eye-opening account of the many unknowns surrounding this virus.

If my recent posts have inspired even one of you to be more cautious, it was worth publishing my story without knowing for sure what I have. I continue to be grateful to all of you for your good wishes and prayers. Please take care of yourself.

I take my photos using the timer on my Sony Alpha a5100 Camera and a tripod.

Shopping links may provide a small commission to me at no additional cost to you. I do not accept gifts in exchange for a review.

  1. Wow! I just read your story! Thank you for making covid “real” for me. Up here near Cleveland, I still do not know anyone first hand who has had it. I work full time in an open public library. I will definitely be more cautious!

  2. Susan, I am so glad you are coming through this nightmarish situation. Continued best wishes to you for a swift and completely recovery

  3. Thank you for sharing your experiences Susan and I am so glad you are on the road to recovery.

    Here in the UK lockdown is lessening almost daily and an element of society is behaving as, or worse, than they did pre Covid. My husband and I find this rather alarming and while we do venture out we keep trips to a minimum and wear our face coverings, use hand sanitizer etc.

    Yesterday was an awful day as we had to take our much loved dog, Henry, to the vets where he was helped across the rainbow bridge. One of the worst parts of this was that as the vets were still in lockdown we were unable to be with him as he passed. We are totally heartbroken to say the least.

    Keep safe everyone and hold those you love especially close. xx

    1. Monica, I’m so sorry for your loss of Henry. Losing our pets is heart-wrenching and compounded by our current circumstances.

    2. Monica I was very moved to read about your experience. We become so very attached to our pets and losing them is truly heartbreaking.

    3. Dear Monica, this is a first for me but as I read your comment I feel compelled to reach out to you.
      I am so sorry to hear about the passing of your fur baby. We had to say goodbye to our sweet little
      Fur baby 2 years ago and I will always miss him. I love doggies and truly understand how heartbreaking
      this is. Sending you love and a hug.

  4. Thank you for sharing your experience with us. I’m glad that you are continuing to improve with your health. Sending love and best wishes.

  5. I am a nurse of 35 years. We have found our testing to only be accurate 33% of the time. Our advice has been to consider yourself COVID positive if you have all the symptoms. There is still so much we do not know about this disease. I appreciate your sharing the experience with your readers. Our ICU’s are full and patients are over flowing to the step down units. People need to take this seriously.

      1. Susan, thank. you for sharing. your story. Just as I was beginning to gain a little confidence to return to the outside world a little bit, I read your blog and went back into self quarantine. Recovering from a pretty major surgery and daughter getting married next month, I can’t risk it.

        My daughter works at a major hospital in TN in the ICU unit. She has covid patients. She just reiterated that the ICU units are at 80-90% capacity, as is usual. That is where hospitals make a lot of money. Patients that can be on other floors sometimes go to ICU because they can be more closely monitored there. They are the first to be moved to a step down floor if a bed is needed for Covid patient. Also many patients are passing away due to other health issues and finding they also had Covid without symptoms. These people are being listed as Covid deaths. Hospitals receiving federal money for those labeled Covid deaths. Her hospital has not seen any increase in Covid patients or ICU admissions due to Covid.

  6. I am so glad to hear that you are feeling better! I really enjoy your posts and love to hear about your travels in the TN/NC area. It’s one of the most beautiful areas in the country. Praying for your health and complete recovery from your illness!

  7. So glad to hear you are doing better! Thank you for sharing your wealth of knowledge on health, style, and nutrition. Continued best wishes.

  8. These articles are very interesting. It brings to light some new information about the virus. Thanks for sharing. Glad your much better.

  9. I am amazed when I see pictures of so many people on Instagram, shopping every day, with no masks. It’s no wonder numbers are going up.
    I’m so glad you are improving. You look gorgeous even sick!
    Take care!

  10. How scary that the tests do not confirm your COVID when you had the symptoms! Hopefully your full workup will yield more clues.

    We are isolating just south of you in NC since mid-March. Positives have skyrocketed 10 fold in the last few weeks due partly to increased testing but also because people are not adhering to CDC guidelines regarding wearing masks and large gatherings. That makes us just isolate more and I’m going a bit stir-crazy.

    Like you, I read- often historical fiction or biographies with strong female characters. I also work puzzles and started a counted cross-stitch project. I made masks (about 75) for the hospital, family and friends until I ran out of supplies. Now, I’m trying to learn a new foreign language online. What I really want to do is hug my grandchildren (sigh).

    Thank you for sharing your story, perhaps a few people who see it will take this disease more seriously and together we can get it under control.

  11. Thank you for sharing your story! I love books also and they are a wonderful reprieve. You will be ready for a small drive and night away in the fall when this is over for you. You continue to look wonderful!

  12. So glad you are feeling better and have support from loved ones and friends.
    And to anyone reading this, please wear a mask when you go out in public, it’s a kindness.

  13. Thank you for sharing your story. So glad you are feeling better and have help! I’ve know several people who have died from it. At least one family from my school has it currently. I have been isolating since spring break and am nervous about going back to the classroom in a few short weeks. Cases are increasing alarmingly in the Texas county where I live. My 89-year-old mother lives with me. I am high-risk due to asthma. Since I see every child in the school everyday as a music teacher, I’m terrified of getting sick or taking something home to Mama.
    Best wishes to you for a continued recovery!

  14. Susan- your ordeal sounds harrowing and it’s wonderful that you have loving people in your life. Wishing you a full recovery and thank you for sharing your story. It is appalling to me that so many people are calling this a hoax and not taking precautions. What we are asked to do is simple and temporary, very little to ask in exchange for saving lives.

  15. I am glad you continue to recover. Thank you for continuing to share your experience. The articles were very interesting. The peaches look yummy.

  16. You are looking fabulous!! Can see you are taking very good care of yourself. Family members are helping you also. Keep in keeping on!

  17. These pictures make you look so lovely, fresh and crisp, No one would believe you had been sick,

    Thank you for sharing your experience with whatever illness you may have experienced. Always better to be prepared for the worst and hope for the best. So far, so good, for you. Not that you were sick but that you don’t have the virus which is so scary especially for those who have a compromised immune system.

    It was very nice to hear that Mr. Mickey, your sister and parents were leaving food at your door. I think a lot of us were worried you were alone and perhaps in need of help and no one there to attend to you.

    Take care, stay well, be alert and continue to be cautious. We miss hearing from you when you can’t be online for long…


    Clara from Iowa

  18. So glad to hear you continue to improve. And yes, thank you for sharing your COVID (esque) journey! There’s so much still to be learned about this illness and yours is a cautionary tale we should all learn from. Wishing you continued healing and a rapid return to good health. You manage to look lovely even during your recovery!

  19. It’s good to see you feeling stronger. You are blessed by the support of Mr. Mickey and your family. Praying for continued healing.


  20. I am glad you are feeling better. You look beautiful. I am praying that your recovery is fast. I hope your doctor is able to provide the answers that you need. Have a wonderful day!

  21. Having wonderful family and friends makes such a difference when you are ill. It sounds like your family and friends are taking excellent care of you. Keep getting better and stronger.

  22. It’s wonderful to see you looking so well. I always enjoy your posts and look forward to them each day. You are a beautiful, descriptive writer with the utmost class. Thank you for all you do. You are my inspiration!

  23. Glad to hear you are now recovering well, and are able to send such a informative post. Take care and continue to eat well and as we say over here in UK, stay alert.

    1. I rarely use any recipe. Warm up the beans and eat them with the potatoes and cut up a fresh cucumber. Rinse and drain the fish, then crumble it on top of steamed broccoli or some other vegetables or even a salad.

  24. Hi, Susan,
    I am so pleased that you seem to be getting better. I love the second picture of you, especially your hairdo! You’re such a pretty lady.

    I’m also pleased that you had so many loving people caring for you, bringing you delicious foods to keep you strong and healthy.

    I am looking forward to hearing about your full recovery!

  25. Susan,

    I am glad you are feeling better. Thank you for sharing your story and the news articles.

    Praying for a fast recovery.

  26. I am so glad to hear you are recovering and taking good healthy care of yourself. You are inspiring and I do appreciate that you shared your story. We hear so much in the (fake) news that it is hard to discern the truth. I trust you and your the story of your journey through what ever it is you had. Be well, and God Bless you in your full recovery.

  27. I’m so glad you are getting better! I can’t tell you how much I’ve appreciated your posts on your illness. Like you, I can’t tolerate drugs well, so it’s good to know about the Epsom Salts for aches and pains. I do sometimes take a regular strength Tylenol, however, since Aspirin and all of the NSAIDS are off the table for me. Keep eating well and staying safe!

  28. So glad you are on the mend! I really appreciate your advice on keeping COVID -free! I was on. A Zoom meeting with someone from Florida who when asked about the situation there, she replied that everyone she sees is healthy and masks are not worn regularly. She was bragging that she plays in a band and “everything is fine” down there! Most of the people on the call where speechless!

  29. Thank you, Susan, for all of your post. I consider it very important for those that have had Covid-19 to share their experiences for the rest of us. I think it should make us all more careful in our day to day activities. I just wish more people would take this serious. Thank you for all of your hard work. Take care!

  30. I’m so sorry you are having to go through this illness. You are looking better. I’m sure all the nutritious foods you are eating will help regain your strength in the days to come.
    My husband and I have been self isolating except for some medical trips and every two week to the grocery store. This virus is too vicious to mess around with! Take care, Susan.

  31. I wish you a speedy recovery! Rest s much as you can! I believe that is medicine for
    Anyone not feeling themselves. Thinking of you!!

  32. If you have all the signs and symptoms of COVID-19, that’s what you have. It doesn’t matter if you have “proven” it by lab tests, which may not even be conclusive. I am 72 and very high risk. My husband is 74 and we have both been self QT except for required medical care and an occasional grocery store trip, both with mask and gloves. I’m glad you are better and yes, your story helps now and helped last week. Some people do not take this seriously, and they should. Keep it up. I’m a regular reader, but also a retired RN. God bless and stay well. p.s. Btw, it may take you longer to bounce back than you expect. Lots of sleep, good food, water, and rest.

    1. I am not sure I agree with your first statement, Annette, since there are so many other illnesses out there, some of which do a very good job of mimicing COVID-19. Regardless, Susan was very sick and we are all glad she is doing better. It will be interesting to see what the antibody test shows.

  33. I’m so glad you are better and sharing your story. I know you took every precaution and still got infected. Scary times we are in. God bless you and stay well!

  34. I’m so glad to see you today. You’re an amazing person. I can’t believe after everything you are going through that you still manage to look good and post this article. You will continue to be in my prayers.

  35. Lots of good wishes and prayers. You are amazing. Not many people would look half as good as you do recovering from a major illness! Thank you for your delightful and informative blog. Do get lots of rest and don’t try and do too much!

  36. Susan, I’m so glad to see you recovering. Ive been following you for several years now and you are just as beautiful and stunning now, without makeup, as ever. You’re an incredible inspiration… Georgianna

  37. So sorry to hear that you’ve been ill, Susan. I will add you to my prayer list. Hoping that your full work-up produces some results that can help you to get better at last.

  38. So glad to hear your are or have recovered. Thank you for sharing links that I will now read. Prayers for good health!

  39. Dear Susan,
    Thank you for your blog which I appreciate, especially how you give principles regarding dressing well and using what one already owns.
    Although I am a decade older than you, there are many similarities to our lives. A retired R.N., I continue to work part time as a tai chi instructor. We both live alone and have older ‘boyfriends’. Like you, I try to eat a plant based diet. Even though my body shape is different than yours (hourglass), your sense of style can be adapted.
    I’m sorry you contracted Covid. Your columns through this time have been inspiring as I’m recuperating from major surgery. May you continue to heal.
    All best wishes,
    Mae Topeka, Ks

  40. I’m so happy to hear you continue to feel better. I was wondering about your eating. You have a great support system.. I’m curious…. how old are your parents? They still have a garden !! So cool . Thanks for all the updates.. you look pretty . I know you’re tired , though. It’s so hot outside … enjoy the cool of a/c

  41. Hi Susan,
    So glad to hear you are feeling better and you have a such a good support system.
    Stay safe my friend!!

  42. Glad to hear you are feeling much better, thanks for sharing your experiences as yours is the first that I have read from someone who has actually been through it. In Australia people haven’t been advised to wear masks at all but yesterday our state of Victoria (which has the most cases) has advised that people should wear masks. It think you have been very brave going through all this without any assistance. Keep strong.

  43. Susan, I’ve been following you for several years! I sincerely hope you speedily return to your usual good health! Being isolated has to be tedious, especially as you’re starting to feel better & regain your energy.
    I’ve meant to ask you this question for a year or more. I have the same large area rug in my living room as you. I purchased it over 35 yrs ago from a sweet, old lady have forgotten any information she gave about it. I know you’re a detail orientated woman and would have information on it! Would you kindly be willing to share? My husband and I would appreciate it! Thanks!

  44. Thank you, Susan, for sharing your experiences with us. It is very enlightening to hear someone’s actual experiences with the virus. Wishing you
    well in your continued recovery.

  45. It has caused me to be more cautious! Your vitamin D is I think a reason you are not sicker than you were. This is where individuals with darker skin tones who are not on Vit. D are having a difficult time in recovery. Your excellent diet I am sure is a contributing factor as well.
    Blessings of health!

  46. Susan, I am glad you are feeling better; you look marvelous!

    Cases here in St. Charles, MO, have spiked over 400% in the past 14 days. My husband and I are still staying at home except for doctor appointments, groceries, and haircuts (where my stylist is adhering to the CDC guidelines). We have even had groceries delivered, and I think that may become more necessary until people start realizing how dangerous this virus can be. We wear our masks when we are out.

  47. Stronger every day, less pain every day … more like yourself every day.

    Thanks for blogging your experiences. I have found them informative beyond measure. More helpful than the news!

    Susan, you are so approachable and honest in your narratives and responses that we all feel we know you and care about your experiences.

    Thank you for being you and encouraging all of us to be our best selves.

  48. So good to hear you are taking care of yourself. I was self-quaratined for 5 months because I wasn’t sure and we agreed wouldn’t take any chances. Keep well.

  49. Growing up my Mother would always say to me “a book can be your best friend”! Through this Covid I would have to agree with her. I am amazed at how many books I have read, and never felt lonely!

  50. You are very inspiring. Your openness and down to earth attitude is refreshing . I’m glad you are recovering and your sharing about being ill has made me feel as though I know you personally. Your style and suggestions are wonderful and practical. I enjoy your blog and pictures. All the best ahead.

  51. I am glad you did an update, Susan! I have been keeping your in my thoughts and check in here several times a week.

    Thank you for the updates you give us!

    Stay Safe!

  52. Thank you for sharing your story Susan you are helping people and me to be vigilant. My daughter is a PA state health nurse and as you said the virus is mutating. many tests are false negative. I share with everyone about the public restrooms, even going inside restaurants, my daughter said is too risky. outside seating only or curbside.

  53. I am so happy that you are feeling better. Please continue to take care of yourself. Continued positive thoughts and prayers for you!

  54. Thank you for sharing this information! It is definitely reminding me to remain cautious!
    Prayers and best wishes to you for a full and speedy recovery.

  55. Dear Susan,
    You are in isolation, but with your wonderful blog you are not alone. You look great and your advice is so important. Thank you for keeping up with your readers.

  56. Hi Susan, thanks for blogging about what you have gone through. Think there are so many unknowns with covid. All efforts to help people take covid more seriously are important. Thank you for yours. I was ill in early March when testing in TX was available only to those very ill who had classic symptoms. I barely ran a fever but had a bad headache, back aches, mild cough, mild feeling of chest pressure and occasional mild shortness of breath, but extreme weakness / exhaustion. For example worried I might pass out whenever I needed to walk to another room. Grateful that whatever it was didn’t get worse…. As it was, it was bad enough. Now several months later, feeling weak has persisted.. ..getting better… but I still tire easily. Can’t imagine line dancing which I love and did 3 x week before illness. Another symptom many don’t have, but I did, was problems with my eyes. During the illness I woke every day with sticky, matted eyes, but not red, like usual ‘pink eye.’ Sometimes a feeling like sand in my eyes kept me awake at night. The sticky stuff would show up throughout the day, and, worse, my vision was blurry. Could not read even if I had felt up to it. As I got better ordered a pair of the strongest readers …and still need to use them, whereas before I got sick I only used basic readers. and only nights when very tired. The friend I may have caught the illness from also had, and continues to have, similar eye issues. But not her husband who brought the illness back after working in California in Feb. I’ve read that ‘conjunctivitis’ can be a symptom with covid though not a common one. Had an antibody test recently which came back negative. However based on some reading seems there can be false negatives. One theory I read is that antibody testing values were established on those most ill in the hospital, so that screening values for antigens in current testing may be set higher than what may be created by ‘milder’ cases…. ie those not requiring supplemental oxygen.
    Sorry to have gone on so long with my own story… but I would say to you that if you feel what you experienced wasn’t like a typical flu… it probably wasn’t flu and more likely was covid. As for the man with the 5 negative tests, he may have had it. . That’s the thing ….it’s called “novel” because so much is still unknown. Even testing is still not consistently accurate. There are significant numbers of people testing positive for antibodies when they had an earlier negative test for covid, and others who had tested positive for covid in a hospital setting, testing negative for antibodies. Lots of unknowns. best wishes, cathy

  57. I’m glad you are up to putting on makeup. I’m sure there were many times when the energy to do anything was not there. You look like you’ve lost weight. Be safe. Know our prayers are with you for a complete recovery. You look pretty in both photos.

  58. Hi Susan, from far off Tasmania. I’d love to gift you a small e-book to fill in your reading hours as I’m guessing your usual brimful energy isn’t brimming so much. Take care and rebuild yourself slowly… Watch your email for an Amazon gift.

  59. It is so wonderful to read you are doing so well. May this dreadful virus quickly pass and your life regain some state of normal as we know it. My prayers are with you Susan. You are such an inspiration to all of us.

  60. Thanks Susan for the article on the virus and a new variant. Very interesting reading. Hope you are feeling better every day.

  61. Hello again Susan,
    I have followed your blog for many many years and send comments every now and again.
    One of the comments a ‘newie’ to your site sent was she pleased to hear ‘your’ husband ‘
    Mr Mickey was well, you said ‘no he is a friend ‘and during this isolation you were truly on your own.
    Physically yes you are on your own isolating, but Spiritually Susan you are not all alone as think of all your followers
    thousands throughout the World. You are a remarkable lady, disciplined and an inspiration to thousands
    of women. This post you said Mr Mickey was your Hero, you to were his Hero when he broke his leg, you
    are true Soulmates and I can’t wait for you both to be on your ‘excursions’ in the gorgeous Tennessee Countryside
    and all those beautiful restraunts in stunning Country houses etc. The greenery and mountains remind me of my
    home land Wales U.K.
    The blue dress you are wearing looks fabulous on you,.Did you wear one in turquoise a while back? Dresses really suit you.
    I think the mid calf length is so elegant and as you said few posts back you felt Regal. You certainly look it too, just lovely.
    Stay, safe , stay healthy and stay positive best wishes Pamela from Wales UK

    1. Thank you for your comments. I have worried a great deal about passing any illness on to Mr. Mickey or my parents. It has been a real challenge to get Mr. Mickey to keep his distance, but he understands how important it is.

  62. Good morning .Thank you for this great blog today. The articles are so appreciated. I live in a suburb of Washington, DC. Our extremely high count of cases is settling for now. This weekend, with patient permission, I was able to post an accurate account of what an ICU ventilation case of COVID entails. Your first hand account is so needed!!! You look incredible. People need to hear first hand accounts. Please stay safe. The surge in the south will try to move north. Have a beautiful day. Bette-Carole O’Connor, MSN RN

  63. Sounds like you are taking good care of yourself. Kudos. Wishing you good health and a speedy recovery. You are blessed with with caring friends and family. Get well soon Susan

  64. If you haven’t already heard of TWIV, I recommend listening to this particular podcast. Antibodies don’t last and the risk of reinfection is a continuing risk. As well as negative long term effects of the virus on the body.
    Wishing you the best outcome

  65. Thinking of you and praying you will be well soon.Sounds like Mr. Mickey is doing well.

    Best Wishes, S

  66. Thank you Susan for sharing this difficult journey. I pray for continued improvement and complete healing for you. God loves you and will be with be with every step of the way.
    God Bless you!

  67. Susan. It is such pleasure to see your posts in my inbox and to read your words as I partake of my morning coffee. You have a gift in the way you connect with your widely dispersed readers .
    So glad to hear that you continue to recover. Take care

  68. As we like to say in the south, “Bless your heart.” I am so glad that you are feeling better. You are (always) an inspiration to this reader, especially as you have written about being diagnosed with Covid 19 & how you have dealt with your illness. I feel certain that your healthy lifestyle has helped you in this ordeal. Continue to heal & grow stronger. Prayers & positive thoughts!

  69. July 14, 2020 update: I have pneumonia now. That is another symptom of the virus. The Health Department here doesn’t have or administer the antibody test. My doctor continues to monitor me as a COVID-19 patient.

  70. Glad you are feeling a little better. Sorry you had to go thru this ordeal.
    Do eat any type of dairy products to add natural calcium to yoir diet?

  71. You look beautiful as always, Susan. Thank you for being a wonderful inspiration to each of your loyal followers.
    I’m sure your story has helped many of us to be more careful. I feel as though I’m always careful with this situation, since I have a compromised immune system from Rheumatoid Arthritis, but it helps to be reminded. My RA dr. reminded me that there are still lots of other viruses around and we have to be extremely cautious, especially seniors.
    Thank you again. (Love seeing you in that royal blue shirt – my favorite color!)

  72. Susan,
    I am so sorry you are going through this. How clever of you to use this to teach others how you are coping. I am a 77 year old Aptos California woman who
    has been following you for a couple of years. I look quite young and most people do not know my age. I like to be stylish and have bought several
    of the things you have recommended. Today I ordered the Claus dress in navy that you are wearing.
    Thank you for sharing your experience. I hope you feel better very soon. I’m on FB if you want to see my style.
    Debbie Conroy

  73. Susan I am worried that you have been diagnosed with pneumonia. I know you don’t tolerate drugs well. Are you able to take antibiotics?

    We are all thinking of you and hope you recover soon ❤️.

    1. Thank you, Pearl. I have a history with one effective antibiotic that has helped in the past. I have to make sure I take it with food, but I can tolerate it.

  74. Good morning!

    I just want you to know that I am so grateful for your blog! I am 63 yoa and I look forward to all your tips and positivity.

    Please know that I am praying for your strength and recovery during your illness.

    God bless you

  75. I’m so glad to see you are improving each day and that you are able to continue your blog that I so look forward to! You are such a joy and I appreciate your willingness to share part of your life with us. I love that you dress up everyday! You are always classy and I love your style! Sharing your COVID-19 experience did indeed make this disease very real to those of us living in low impact areas. I also didn’t personally know anyone that had COVID until relatives in Florida shared their COVID-19 stories. Staying at home, especially if you don’t feel well (for any reason, not just fever) is the best thing. That also means keeping children home from daycare when they are not well and self isolating if you have contacted someone ill (regardless of symptoms). We take a huge risk leaving our homes these days, especially if you are older. Wearing masks and using hand sanitizers is not a guarantee even if you know how to properly use your mask and sanitizer. You can read and see what it takes for healthcare workers to remain safe from COVID-19 with specialized equipment in a controlled healthcare setting. The one thing I have learned from reading about COVID-19 shared stories is that the viciousness and symptoms vary greatly. To date we don’t have a cure, but thankfully we have advances in diagnostics, medicines, technology, and more importantly, many wonderful and dedicated healthcare workers and scientists. I pray that they find a vaccine soon!

  76. Susan I’m so sad to hear you have pneumonia!! I hope your medications work quickly and do take good care of yourself!

  77. Thats the stuff, Susan – chin up and soldier on. You look wonderful considering what you have gone through. [You look wonderful even without going through all that!]
    Keep up the good work – you inspire lots of us.
    Marilyn Lea, Rhhydymwyn, Wales, UK

  78. Oh gosh, sending you prayers. It sounds like you are doing everything you can to stay healthy so I am sure you will continue to improve. Just know that you are helping others to understand the gravity of this virus. My husband and I feel like we are so careful but know just one minute of forgetting safety can be a mistake. Wishing you the very best and take care.

  79. Hello Susan. Ive just read your update and am so sorry to hear you have pneumonia on top of everything you’ve been through. I hope it helps you to know that many followers of your site, I am sure, will be sending best wishes and remembering you in their prayers. Try to take one day at a time and stay positive and strong – not easy when you are poorly I know. Please let us now how you are when you feel up to it.

  80. Hi Susan,

    So sorry to hear you have been really sick. I hope by now you are slowly getting better. You get 10’s all around getting dresses, hair looking great. Nobody would think you were feeling so poorly.Take care and keep recovering.

  81. Hi Susan,
    I’m so sad to hear you are still not returned to health. Thank you for continuing to share your story and good counsel with us. I look forward to hearing you are once again healthy and active; always a lovely presence.
    Much love from Washington, DC

  82. Dear Susan,

    I read your posts religiously and find your fashion tips always on target. So often you will show a lovely outfit of two or three pieces and I realize that I have very similar items in my closet but hadn’t thought to pair them. As I may have mentioned previously, I’m an eighty-two year old Trans woman. I do a fair amount of public speaking and in virtually all cases when I’m asked my age I never tell but it is usually suggested to be 55 to 60. I don’t say this to boast but rather to confirm what the late Dick Clark once said when asked about his youthful appearance; MOISTURIZE!. I have done this since I was 35 and continue to this day.

    Wishing you a speedy recovery and a future of good health.
    Katie Thomas

  83. Dear Susan,

    It’s so nice to see your pretty face smiling. Books are your best friend, they bring you “pure joy”, I am sure you have no
    concerns about becoming bored. Missing Mr. Mickey, family, and dear friends is a completely different story. I imagine
    the Psychologist are keeping very busy since the Pandemic started. The new normal is not easy. I think about little ones when a child starts to focus on the face and they see everyone with masks on, perhaps this is their new normal. A hidden smile is a casualty of war with the virus. In a masked society, we need substitute for our best form of non verbal communication. Yes, your eyes are the window to your soul, however they are often protected with sun glasses
    or medical goggles now.

    It sounds like you have an excellent doctor, and is investigative and doing a full panel of labs, excellent.

    You remain in my prayers and thoughts. You are a special lady. Thank you for sharing your heart with so many.

    Katherine in Arizona

    Thank you for sharing the articles, I glanced at them, and will read them in more depth. You can never have enough science material on diseases. Knowledge is power

  84. I hope you are able to get rid of this virus in a short time. Blessings to you and thank you for posting your story. I love to read your blog and especially like to see how you work with things you have and love.

  85. Susan, I will continue to pray for your complete recovery. I pray the antibiotics cure your pneumonia quickly. What a trial you are going through! My heart goes out to you.

  86. Such a wonderful blog. Thank you for sharing, Susan. I am so glad you are taking extra good care and that your doctor is monitoring you closely. This is a very sneaky virus. You look wonderful and I pray for your continued recovery. BTW, have you discovered Baruka Nuts (harvested and replenished from Rain Forrests) and Trail Mix. I’m whole foods plant based. These are lower in fat and calories than most other nuts while also being very nutrient dense. Big hugs your way.

  87. Thank you for your posts and for being so candid about everything you’re going through. It has certainly made me more aware of how serious this virus is, especially since I’m over the age of 60, also. Sending you the very best wishes and prayers for a fast, healthy recovery. And, by the way, you look good! Love the blue dress on you!

  88. Susan, am so sorry to hear that you now have pneumonia. Please continue to monitor yourself carefully. The novel, the unknown, makes covid so dangerous. Prayers your way.

  89. I am so sorry to hear about the pneumonia. I’m sure you know that requires lots of rest (I think elevating your head/chest area is supposed to be good?) and tons of fluid. Will be praying that you heal well.

  90. You are looking good in the pictures. You are very lucky to have Mr. Mickey and friends that check on you. I hope you feel more like yourself soon.

  91. Susan are you okay??? I am so sorry to hear you have been ill. Please keep us updated .
    Heavenly Father please put your arms Susan & lift her up, give strength & heal her if this illness. In the name of the Father, Son, & Holy Spitit

  92. Hi Susan, I’ve been following you for a few months but haven’t commented before. I am so sad that you have caught this flu and now pneumonia! You look very pretty in the blue and white outfit despite everything. I just love the way you write your blog. Somehow it is very calming to read. Please continue to take good care and keep us updated.

  93. So very sorry to hear that you now have pneumonia as a complication of the coronavirus. You, your family and your healthcare team remain in my thoughts and prayers.
    As a retired physician I want to thank you for sharing your story to help educate others about the seriousness of this illness. The links you have provided contain valuable and reliable information.

  94. Thank you for sharing your stories! I hope you continue to improve, and send big kudos for following the difficult isolation practices to help keep others, including loved ones, safe.
    Your blog continues to be a bright spot in my mailbox! Take care…

  95. Praying for a full recovery. You are a beautiful person inside and out.

    Vikki Andrews

  96. Susan, I am so sorry to hear you have pneumonia. Here’s hoping that the treatment you are receiving stops it in its tracks.
    Please know that you have done a great service to others by chronicling your illness. I have shared with friends and family your story — and how careful we must be. I respect you greatly for sharing that piece of information so honestly. It serves as a constant reminder to me, even when my face starts to feel hot and sticky while I’m walking through the grocery store parking lot. Keep that mask on, I tell myself!
    I’m lucky to live in the state of Maryland where our leaders took this seriously from the beginning. You will be in my thoughts and I will check your blog to see how you are doing. – Pat W.

  97. This is so horrible. Testing negative does not mean you are out of the woods. Please, please everyone keep your mask on whenever you are outside. Stay away from crowds – be cautious!! Susan, I pray that you will recover 100% very soon.

  98. Thank you for sharing, Susan. How thoughtful of you to keep us informed, even though you aren’t feeling well. I pray you are well on your way to recovery. And BTW, even after all you have been through, you are still attractive without makeup!

  99. I want to THANK Mr. Mickey, and your sister for helping you. You are so brave to do this on your own without anybody. I’m so sorry to hear you have pneumonia now, I know how that feels and goes because I get it most winter, so I have learn to stay in during most of the winter time. If I go out it is with a face mask, so I have been wearing a mask long before the C-19 was around. You might have to do it also. That is why the summer months I sun when I can and enjoy the out side knowing I will be in during most of the winter months. Do not get worn down any more then you have to because that helps in the recover I have found out the hard way. Please Stay Safe and rest. I do enjoy all of your post you do. I try o look at them first thing in a.m. when I get up, you start my day off. Get well soon

  100. Susan, thank you for the update and will pray that you have a quick and full recovery from the pneumonia with no lasting side effects from this or the Covid 19 virus. God speed for a full recovery and appreciate you sharing this awful journey. We share a love for books and reading. Get lots of rest and push the fluids. Blessings to you. ♥️

  101. Susan, you are in my thoughts and prayers. I hope you get through this pneumonia quickly and on the road to recovery. What an awful thing to have on the heels of Covid. Glad you are on meds to help fight that off. I am thinking of you, and thank you for letting us know. Bless your heart.

  102. I’m so glad your feeling better and hope for your continued healing.. Ive been a follower of yours for a few months and decided to let my hair grow out to its natural gray as your example gave me the impetus.. I love your style and am trying to streamline my closet as you have. Thank you for your blog.

  103. I’m so sorry you’re having to go through this, Susan! I hope your journey has impressed us with the severity of this pandemic and how important it is to keep up our guard. It truly can happen to anyone.
    I went ahead and ordered the Shapeez masks that they’re making now that bra sales are a little slow. They’re of excellent quality and comfortable. I bought twelve and have been giving them to family members. I think I’ll order more since I think we’re in this for the long haul. Just get on the Shapeez website for info.

  104. Dear Susan

    Do take care and continue to be positive.

    Wishing you a speedy recovery.

    Kindest regards


  105. Your pictures and comments make a difference in my moments of idle time…. I, too, love to read and the books you show look divine! I am glad you are recovering from whatever strain it is and taking care of yourself. Thank you Susan!

  106. May God bless you and grant improved heath of body and spirit! We love your posts Susan and thank you for sharing your personal story. My husband and I (64 and 70 years of age) are being very cautious here in MI. It’s a lonely time but also one of introspection and growth – we’re finding new ways to share our love with others. And fruitful action has become my personal mantra – spending time supporting efforts political and social and spiritual, to improve lives. Wishing the best to all.

  107. Hope you will recover soon. Appreciated your message about the things you did while sick.Always enjoy your messages. Love your house decor- looks a lot like mine. We read a lot too – am thankful .I have always been a reader. Husband is too. I always enjoy your texts. Thanks and best wishes, Jane Young-Howard

  108. Oh Susan I am SO SORRY to hear you have pneumonia. My heart goes out to you.

    Please keep us posted as you have a lot of fans!

  109. Wow! I hope you get better soon. I’m sorry this happened to you. You don’t deserve this. Take care of yourself. Be safe after you return to the world. Good luck and God Bless.

  110. Hi Susan,
    Hope you are feeling better. This has been a difficult time for you but so nice you have people to help. The last three years have been challenging for me, too. In 2018 I became very ill and spent 9 days in the hospital with an infection in my back and sepsis in my blood. I took me a year to get back on my feet then contracted leukemia. I had to retire from teaching really fast, move back to where my family lives and start chemo therapy. That was a process for 6 months. I am cancer free now and healthy. Your web sight has been so inspiring for me. I try to dress nicely even if I don’t feel well because it makes me have a better outlook on life. You have great taste and your body shape is similar to mine. I have boughten many of the things you recommend It saves me so much time shopping. Never doubt that you make a difference and help so many of us who are trying to live a better life. Take good care of yourself. This situation is temporary and soon we will all be back to normal.

  111. Thank you for sharing your journey. I’m sure your writing has inspired others to be more cautious. Continue to eat healthfully and indulge your love of reading as you recover. Best wishes to feel fully yourself soon.

  112. Susan I was wondering what happened and was getting a bit worried, until I read the comments just now and see that you have pneumonia. I was relieved when I saw that you replied to someone earlier this morning. Wishing you full, speedy recovery. God bless.

  113. Dear Susan, ….by sharing your health journey maybe others will understand how serious this virus
    Is. Thank you for all your valuable information, continue to take good care of yourself, I truly hope you feel better every day.

  114. Thank you for continuing to share your story. I saw that you plan to post again this week, so I hope to hear that you’re seeing some improvements. Take care.

  115. I have been reading your blog since covid started as it helped me dream of packing for vacations and going out and about. Your choice of clothing and accessories are great and I even reorganized my closet! I wish you a full recovery and hope you listen to your doctors. We know a few people who have had this and nourishment and rest is so important. Get well!

  116. How wonderful you have a caring network of friends and family! I hope you recover quickly. Your blog is inspiring.

  117. I’m so sorry to learn you are not well. My thoughts and prayers are heading your way! Your good health habits are really helping you now thank goodness. I hope each day will bring you increased wellness physically, mentally, and emotionally.

  118. Susan, not only do you have a gift for styling the look of a confident, poised, and secure woman, you are also able to choose influential words to share your knowledge with others. I’m always impressed with your insight and self discipline. From your openness, I know that you have weathered some tough challenges in the past, and I have a feeling you will experience some challenges as you fight this new attack on your health. You are such a strong woman. As you read over the tremendous love and support your readers send you, I hope you will be encouraged to know how important you are to so many. Praying for complete healing!

  119. Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers as you continue to heal. Thank you for putting a “face” on COVID for many people. Hoping you conquer this pneumonia quickly and feel 100% soon.

  120. you are fortunate to have family and Mr. Mickey support you at this time
    I have been home 25 years with MS
    I was also in fashion industry ,retail, once Mary Kay consultant, even a bridal consultant
    my career crashed at 40th birthday now 67
    I was fortunate my family and friends supported me
    my husband retired, looking after me, my kids moved on their own
    excited to see my grandchildren
    during my stay at home I always found ways to be independent , sadly miss driving me car now just like you I never look flumpy around the house , I always dress well, good skincare and makeup
    I have a nail nurse to do my manicure and pedicure, my hairdresser comes over to my home to trim and dye my hair my health careworker always asks me “are you going out today” I say no, I’m always dressed up but nowhere to go
    always look forward to reading your Website , you are a great inspiration for all women, take care be safe

  121. Susan, so sorry to hear about your Covid and Pneumonia. Wishing you a short road to full recovery.

  122. Prayers for your recovery from pneumonia and getting back to good health soon! God Bless! Love your blogs and fashion advice!

  123. I’m so very glad you are on the mend and feeling much better. I have been following your blog for such a long time and admire how candid and honest you are. A true lady in every meaning of the word. I am inspired by generosity of spirit and love your taste in fashion, which I follow with enthusiasm. Kindest regards Bev.

  124. Hi Susan, I am hoping that you are doing much better. I am praying for you. I have been in my house for about 3 months. I get my groceries delivered. I only go out for blood tests as I take Coumadin. I really enjoy your posts. I have learned so much. Thank You and God Bless, Norma Karr

  125. Hi Susan. Just a brief note to tell you I enjoy your blog. I am 63 years old and live in Minnesota. Take good care.

  126. Susan, I hope you are feeling stronger every day. I want to ask about the Osteo Density blend. I had to order because I was not able to find locally. I just opened and was surprised by the taste. It was very tart, sour, and chalky. I can mix into a beverage or smoothie, but I just wanted to make sure it was the same. I’m always leary ordering online. Thanks!

  127. I just came across your blog after not having seen it for awhile. So sorry to hear you were suffering the effects of Covid. Hopefully by now you are so much better and out of isolation. I so enjoy your posts and wish you the best!

  128. I hope you are feeling better. I applaud your efforts to stay isolated as you recovered. And your communication with your medical providers most important.
    Unfortunately, a neighbor of mine died very recently from contacting covid 19, through a double standard. She made masks, but went out to eat etc and didn’t wear one. She had people visiting constantly. She was a social butterfly. The mornings I have coffee on my patio, I can see her house and it’s hauntingly sad .
    Reading of your experience although trying, was hopeful. Thank you

  129. Please continue to take care. I wish you a speedy recovery. You certainly do look after yourself and your blog is very inspirational. Over the years I’ve enjoyed your many tips and positive attitude.
    Best wishes, Susan from Sydney Australia xx

  130. Love your clothes. I also like your hair. I’m letting mine grow out. It’s more salt and pepper though. Hope you are well by now.

  131. I pray you’re better now. I also had a negative test but if not COVID I definitely had something I’d never felt before. The fatigue was remarkable. I isolated and stayed isolated until I felt better. I’m confident it was COVID. I can relate to what you’ve described. Take care and be safe.

  132. Dear Susan,
    I am so sorry to hear you have been suffering from Covid and now have pneumonia. I realise it is now three months later and you are hopefully feeling better. Please take care as this insidious virus seems to have effects which can last for quite some time.
    I live in New Zealand and as a small island nation with a small population we have been able to control things quite well. In the first outbreak we locked down the whole country. While the economy suffered badly we got rid of the disease for 100 days. We are now on our third outbreak, with each of the last two outbreaks caused by homecoming nationals and now infected essential workers from overseas. I am in fact British and all my family are still there so it has been a very worrying time as things seem to be worsening again.
    Hopefully you are better again and we can continue to enjoy your articles which I discovered on Pinterest a while ago. You manage refined elegance without blowing the budget which I appreciate now I am retired.

    Kind regards
    Kenzie McConnel

  133. I so appreciate your blog! I really liked this one. Although it’s not recent, we are all still struggling with the pandemic, God icky knitted for how much longer! You have uplifting and positive ways to cope! After health issues of my own several years ago, and being exposed to better eating by my daughter, who has a chronic illness, I am 20 pounds lighter than I was 12 years ago. I lost my sugar addiction and generally feel so much better than I did before! It’s great for me to see others, like you, willing to go against the culture to eat better and be more mindful of our health! Merry Christmas!

  134. That is your most attractive outfit! The deep blue blouse with the white pants & the jeweled sandals-you look great!

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I share tips and inspiration for using what you already have in contemporary ways. Defining words include effortless, classic, refined, discreet, and elegant. My style is chic, minimal, and timeless with a bit of edge.