Michelle, this was my take on the free time afforded by a shut down as well! I am going to volunteer with meals on wheels...this is an activity that all us govvies can participate in. We can prepare, package, and deliver food. And visit with the folks that recieve the meals.
My husband and I did this one Thanksgiving, and we had a lot of fun, met some truly beautiful souls, and I believe, were the better for it.
Meals-on-Wheels is a program that lets older people stay in their own homes, keeps them in thier social circles and extends the ability to function independently for a longer period of time. Many of these folks would be needing additional social services, and those funds are drying up.