14 days of home-bound fun (no Zoom quizzes or banana bread, promise)
What’s a Quarantine Advent Calendar?
It’s our 2020 riff on a traditional advent calendar. Virtual doors hide all sorts of wonderful things to keep you entertained if you’re self-isolating or bored in lockdown (or want to cheer up someone else who is)
Why is Motley doing this?
We usually make jewellery, but we had some self-isolating Motley team members who needed cheering up. Then, we thought it might cheer others up too, so we’re sharing it with you.
How does it work?
1. Sign up to access the calendar and get daily reminders
2. Every 24 hours, a door will unlock
3. Engage in some home-based fun
You can share it with others, too.
We don’t want to ruin the fun. But we promise it’s good.
14 days of home-bound fun (no Zoom quizzes or banana bread, promise)
Proven to improve hand eye coordination, fine motor skills and concentration. You’ll want to come out the other end of isolation just as sharp as you went in. Motley tip: find yourself absentmindedly creating origami in zoom meetings, and impress everyone with just how well you’re handling your 14 days stint in home office.
Start with a crane (because of course) then move into boxes, elephants and plenty more. Remember to take your time - after all, you’ve got plenty of it.
MAKE YOUR BED, HOTEL STYLE
You and your bed are in this together, for the next fourteen days. Get your sheet together with this step by step on how to get hotel-level comfort in your very own home:
01 Start with your nicest sheets. The fancy ones you got for Christmas. The flat sheet you never understood, and maybe feared. Give them a wash (you’ve got the time for it) at 60*, and dry outside for extra crispness.
02 Iron them so they’re crease free. (You deserve it).
03 If you have a flat sheet at home: place it so it’s evenly spread and centred on the bed, with even overhang on all sides. If fitted, go ahead and fit it as evenly as possible.
04 Pull your flat sheet tight and tuck it under on one side, then do the same on the others. Ensure a tuck worthy of Ru Paul’s runway.
05 Put your duvet in the case. Shake your duvet to make sure the inner filling (down, preferably) is evenly dispersed. Shake vigorously to make up for lack of other movement.
06 Pull it all the way up till it’s two inches away from the headboard, and smooth it out so it’s wrinkle free.
07 Pillow time - fresh, ironed cases over pillows. Preferably an unreasonable amount of pillows. Karate chop the middle of each for extra plumpness.
08 The finishing touches - lavender scents, artfully draped throws, maybe even a pillow chocolate. Sleep well, dreamer.
MAKE A MEAL IN A MUG, A POT OR A BAKING TRAY
Day 03 is the early stage dip. You need a lift, and nothing lifts quite like delicious food. You may have struggled to get much done today, and that’s okay. Team Motley’s got you covered, whatever energy level you’re willing to put into your creation.
GET YOUR COGS TURNING
Another brain buster to keep you sharp for the days (and months and years) ahead. If it’s been a while since you’ve done a crossword, now’s the time to unleash your inner puzzlemaster (or your outer googling skills). More of a numbers person? Opt for the sudoku instead. Either way, go to bed and sleep soundly, knowing you’ve accomplished something. Go you.
Time for a wind down. Come out of quarantine bright-eyed and bushy tailed with team Motley’s top Home Spa tips:
01 Cucumber on the eyes. Classic.
02 The bath of dreams. Soaps, suds, candles, you name it. Time to bust out every bath gift set you received over the past two years. No bath? No problem. Apply some essential oils right before a shower and let the steam do its work. Either way, come out fresh as a newborn babe.
03 Turmeric and oatmeal face mask: Selected both because it has excellent healing properties, and because it’s made of things you (almost) definitely have in your cupboard.
- 1/2 cup oats
- 1.5 tsp turmeric powder
- 2 tablespoons oil
Mix your oats and turmeric powder
Stir in the oil
Add in enough water for a smooth, spreadable consistency
Smear and relax for 5-10 minutes, breathing in the healing turmeric
04 You do you: whatever treatment, product or ritual you’ve been putting off, now is your time. You have our official permission to take a few hours entirely for yourself.
THE STORY OF JOAN OF ARC
You might be feeling prone to some melodrama at this point, and we think you deserve to lean into it. Read the story of Joan of Arc, famously imprisoned for the duration of her trial. Let her fifteen sessions of imprisonment inspire you for yours (and make you thankful for the creature comforts 2020 affords).
We saved these for seven days in, because we knew the chance of you finding them funny would only get better with time. Here is our roundup of jokes you will Only Find Funny Seven Days In.
Why can’t skeletons play church music?
They don’t have organs.
What’s the opposite of a croissant?
A happy Uncle.
How do you tell the sex of an ant? You drop it in water. It sinks: girl ant. It floats...
What do you call a sick eagle?
If you laughed at any of the above, phone a friend for some urgently needed human contact.
You may be experiencing a dip today, and that’s okay. It’s important to check in on how you’re feeling, even though it may feel like you’ve got nothing but time for that right now. Set aside 5, 10 or 20 minutes for mindfulness meditation and come out the other end ready to face the next few days with more calm.
If you’re a mindfulness meditation pro, choose your own favoured practice and use this as a reminder to look after yourself – you’re doing great.
FIND YOUR INNER (OR OUTER) HEMMINGWAY
You promised yourself you would discover new hobbies in isolation (or get back into old ones). It’s time to dust off your A Level literature notes (or give the middle finger to your year nine English teacher who told you not to bother trying), and get stuck into some quick creative writing.
Pour yourself a big whisky, imagine you’re sat in a bohemian cafe in Paris in the original (and superior) 20s, and get stuck in.
Pick one of three exercises, or do them all:
01 Pick an object that is ugly, and create a character who finds it very beautiful. Have the character describe the object in a way that convinces the reader of its beauty.
02 Create a minor character based upon someone you dislike. Now, have your main character encounter them and feel empathy for them despite their faults.
03 Think of a new world that could be the setting for a story. Then, think about what it looks like; what it smells like; what kind of attitude people have there. List all the traits you can think of for this world, even if it seems inconsequential. This exercise will help you notice more of the fine details that make a short story really pop.
YOU'VE EARNED THIS BINGE - FOUR DAYS TO GO!
Day 10 is a milestone; well done for making it this far! You’re keeping people safe and having the Best Time Ever indoors. If you’ve managed to resist the urge for a good binge, now is the time to treat yourself. That Netflix show you’ve been saving? Bust it out. A classic film you’ve been meaning to watch for decades? No time like the present.
With a world of streaming at your fingertips, we know it can be hard to choose, so we’ve created the world’s quickest quiz to help you along the way.
01 I’ve got : A 1 hour | B 2 hours | C All day, baby
02 My favourite genre is: A Horror | B Romance | C Comedy
03 I prefer: A Movies | B TV show marathons | C Documentaries
AAA: Frankenstein, 1931: A cult horror film classic that clocks in at 1 hour 11 minutes? You’re in for a treat.
BAB, AAB : The Haunting of Bly Manor, 2020: Love marathons but only have a little time? This is the one. Watch an episode or two of Netflix’s scariest new show and save the rest for a proper binge.
BAC, AAC: Killer Legends: This documentary explores urban legends and the possible true crimes that inspired them – chilling stuff.
BAA: The Others, 2001 – Get stuck into this acclaimed horror classic.
CAA: Frankenstein, The Others, and a few episodes of The Haunting of Bly Manor – a guaranteed scream filled day.
BBA, ABA: Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga. Perfect for a little light hearted romance, and easy to pause halfway through if you’ve not got time for the whole thing.
CBA: Pride and Prejudice, Moonlight and Eurovision Song Contest – three beautiful, romantic stories that are worlds apart.
BBC, ABC Romantic Comedy – made for lovers of the genre, and lovers of documentary films.
ABB, CBB, CBC: Sex Education, Romantic Comedy (the documentary), Grace and Frankie.
SOLITUDE IN ART, POETRY AND MUSIC
Time to lean into some existential drama. The end of your confinement is nigh, so relish any of the following:
DO YOU KNOW ALL THE COUNTRIES OF THE WORLD?
There’s a whole lot of world outside your home, your city and your country. One day, when this is over, you’ll be able to get back out there and see it. And you’ve got to be ready for that moment.
In this quiz, you have 15 minutes to list all the countries you know – and remind yourself of some you’ve not thought about since GCSE Geography.
CHORES, CHORES, CHORES
Staring at a clock may seem appealing right now. Instead, get everything ship-shape in your space before things get busy again. This may not be the wildest or the most fun, but you’ll be glad your to-do’s are done in a few days’ time. And we’ve got a big old list to help.
THE BIG NIGHT IN
If we’ve learned anything this year, it’s that being home for extended periods of time ain't so bad. Congratulations. You’ve made it through and kept people safe, all while having the best time. Today, we give you all the fixings for a home rager to ring in the end of quarantine in style.
01 First off are cocktail recipes, straight from Motley team member’s own cocktail shakers:
Name: Tales of Provence
Recipe: Mix a glass of champagne with one teaspoon of lavender syrup, and add one candied almond
Motley team member: Charlotte, Insights Executive and Cocktail Afficianado
Name: Chilli Margharita
Recipe: Cecily’s go to recipe here.
Motley team member: Cecily, Motley Co-Founder and Cocktail King
Name: Vietnamese Bloody Mary
Recipe: See a version here. Brace yourself for the fish and soy sauce.
Motley team member: Maja, Copywriter and Salt Addict.
02 Next, you’ll need to crack out the Black Tie
03 Some sweet, sweet tunes. This surprisingly upbeat Lockdown-themed playlist is just the ticket.
04 Finally, a discount on some great jewellery. Use code ADVENT10 to treat yourself – you’ve earned it.