From knitting to kayaking, fill your time with something a little different.

By Taylyn Washington-Harmon
Updated October 25, 2020
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If you're stuck indoors like the vast majority of us, you are probably on the hunt for a new quarantine hobby—and maybe one that is a bit more stimulating than mindless social media scrolling or binging hours and hours of Netflix or Hulu. (Please remind me not to check my iPhone’s Screen Time. *Face palm*.)

Social distancing and isolation can get downright boring after a while, whether you're home alone or hunkered down with your roommate, family, or partner. As someone in search of things to do during quarantine (watching Sex and the City reruns just isn’t cutting it), I asked my friends, family, and co-workers for the fun hobbies they're trying while sheltering in place.

Baking Bread

"I got into baking sourdough because a neighbor posted on Facebook that he had some starter to spare (it multiplies when you feed it), so I took him up on the offer. The only new thing I've bought so far is a digital food scale ($20, target.com), but this Dutch oven—which I already had—is a must as well." —Rachel B.

Dungeons and Dragons

"I’ve been watching a lot of Twitch live-streamers during quarantine. One of them, Wes Johnson, started a Dungeons and Dragons campaign for his moderators. I just happened to be watching the stream that day and as Johnson was telling the backstory and setting the stage for his mods, I got hooked. The story was intense and I could tell just how invested he was in providing a great experience for his mods. I’ve been watching the whole campaign and it’s spurred me into finding my own campaign through Discord. Between worldbuilding, role playing, and action, there’s something for everyone and it’s perfect for quarantine." —Christina L.

Journaling

"The COVID-19 pandemic has caused my thoughts to be all over the place (as I’m guessing it’s done to many people). For this reason, I’ve been spending more time journaling, in an attempt to keep myself centered and keep my mental health in check. I find that if I splurge on paper products, I’m more likely to sit down and sort out my thoughts, which is why I often find myself looking for Moleskine journals." —Maggie O., assistant editor 

Jumping Rope

"Jumping rope is probably my favorite form of exercise right now because it’s portable and you don’t need a lot of space to do it! Perfect for a girl on the go (and it’s such good cardio!). Also nice: Time passes quickly and it’s easy to just zone out, almost putting me in a meditative state. Plus, it reminds me of being a kid and showing off on the playground." —Kimberly S.

Kayaking

L.L. BEAN

"While quarantining with my family in Florida, I've taken up kayaking in the creek behind my parents' house. Paddling around not only connects me with nature and offers a change of scenery (all while social distancing!), but kayaking also helps me sneak in a fun outdoor workout. If you happen to live near any body of water, I would—10 out of 10—recommend. You can snap up a decently priced kayak at Dick's Sporting Goods or score this one from L.L. Bean for 15% through May 26 just in time for summer." —Susan B., senior digital editor

To buy: L.L.Bean Manatee Kayak, $297 (was $349), llbean.com

Knitting

"I love knitting, because it’s so relaxing and I can make cute gifts for friends and family. I got into it after finding a blanket that my great-great-grandma knitted, and someday I want to be able to leave behind something like that." —Elise M.

To buy: Learn to Knit Kit, $49, etsy.com

Making Pancakes

"Now that I have more time for breakfast and recipe experimentation, my brother and I have been making pancakes and we even tried the viral pancake cereal trend. When we wake up later on the weekends, this Power Cakes mix is the perfect brunch to keep us full for longer since it's packed with protein." —Rebecca S., senior social media editor

Nail Art

"I have really enjoyed playing around with designing nails after more than 20 years of not doing them for others. It's been like therapy for me during this pandemic mess. Good thing my only clients are my kids and sisters, because my husband’s afraid I might make a career change!" —Dana C.

Strolling

"These days, my hobbies include my five- and three-year-old daughters. My husband and I got them each a toy stroller so that they can ‘take their babies for a walk’ around the neighborhood, which in turn allows us all to get out of the house and move with minimal ‘I’m-bored-can-we-go-home’ complaints. It’s kind of fun for me to relive one of my favorite childhood pastimes (I was very into dolls and my mom was very into making me exercise), and it always earns us a smile and a nod from neighbors." —Dara K., executive editor

Paint by Numbers

Paint By Number Kit

"My roommate bought a paint by number set, and hers was coming out so good that I decided to bring back my old art school skills and get my own. It definitely has kept me occupied on rainy days inside!" —Rachel C., associate SEO manager

Photography

"Since quarantine began, I've been feeling grateful that photography is a social distancing activity. I've been bringing my camera with me on walks around the neighborhood and local gardens. Being home during the day also means I can take advantage of the natural light in my own apartment—something I always missed out on when I was working out of the office." —Rebecca S., senior social media editor

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