Lifetime: How have you adjusted to being at home with your spouse for an extended period of time?
AJ: Steph is working 100 percent remotely. She's taking over my home office because I just stopped working overnight and she stopped going to her office for work overnight. So that's great for her, but a little rough on me.
Lifetime: How do you make time for yourself when isolated with your spouse?
AJ: It's hard. I go to my car sometimes and just sit and listen to music. Unfortunately, I can't drive around because I have residential parking here and it is free. So if I move my car or move my parking space, I'll never find another one since nobody else is moving their car to go to work anymore. I just sit in it and jam out in the spot. Stephanie: Not much, unfortunately. I've blurred the lines between too much working from home and not having enough personal time. I need to do a better job of not letting work blend in after hours to my personal [time].
Lifetime: What is your biggest pet peeve about your spouse while in quarantine?
AJ: You hate it when I walk in on you while you're working and break your concentration, or if I [ask] a little question. I'm not having full conversations with you but [still]. Stephanie: When I'm in a meeting or in the zone getting work done, it's tough to break my concentration. AJ: When she has her AirPods in, I never see them because her hair's down. So then I assume she's not in a meeting. Stephanie: But besides that we don't really have pet peeves. I think we figured all that out on the wedding night. AJ: Yeah, we did. We talked about that on our wedding night.
Lifetime: Has your daily routine changed since quarantine has begun?
Stephanie: My daily routine has gotten a lot different. I'm working all day in his office. He doesn't have his office space anymore. But we do both still wake up at the same time every day to get ready for work every day. AJ: Sometimes I sleep on the couch so my commute is shorter in the morning. Stephanie: That's a lie. *laughs*
Lifetime: How do you keep things romantic with your spouse during quarantine?
AJ: You gotta get innovative. You have to think outside the box. There's not a lot to work with. For us, we don't even have a backyard. We're trapped inside four walls. Stephanie: It's tough to be romantic in quarantine in a small Center City, Philadelphia apartment where you can't go out and you don't have a backyard. You don't really have much. So we've been making sure we do nice things for each other around the house. Like he's always cooking and cleaning and helping around the house. And then sometimes we'll do a little romantic dinner on the balcony.
Lifetime: Have you picked up any new hobbies since quarantine has begun?
AJ: I've tried a few, but nothing's really resonated. I've been looking for a hobby for years now—a relatively cheaper one that you can just do in the house. Not [one where] you need a garage or anything. Stephanie: I'll say since quarantine began, AJ has become a delicious banana bread baker. AJ: I did, I forgot about that. I make banana nut or banana chocolate chip bread, every week basically. As soon as we're done with one, I'll make you another.
Lifetime: How has work life changed?
AJ: I just stopped working overnight and I kind of got lost. I didn't know what to do. I felt useless and there was nothing for me to do for work. And that was the first time I felt like that in a long time. And owning your own business, it gets you. So, I really just had to refocus, and I was able to adapt, which is what entrepreneurs have to do. I started doing resumes and career services for people, because that's who's in need now—the people who are on the market looking for a job. Stephanie: His work life changed by the type of work he's doing, and my work life changed just the location, since I'm at home instead of the office. AJ: You might even be working more now that you're at home. Stephanie: I probably am working more now that I'm at home. AJ: It's a blessing, it really is. It's a blessing and a curse. Stephanie: It’s nice that I still have a job. But it's not nice that I don't get to spend time with my husband because I'm working so much. AJ: The fact that you have so much work is better than no work.
Lifetime: How has the quarantine changed your plans for the future?
Stephanie: At least for the immediate future, our travel plans have changed. We were planning to go away, out of the country, for our two-year anniversary to go away. Hopefully, that still happens. We don't know. It’s too early to tell. I had several vacation and travel plans the last couple of months that have been canceled. AJ: My birthday was spent in quarantine. We had tickets and stuff to do things, and now it's looking like it's going to be 2021 before we get to do any of those things. Stephanie: A lot of our immediate activities have been changed and canceled, but I guess for the long-term change, the one thing we realized is that eventually we're going to need to get out of a small apartment in the city and move somewhere where AJ can have a garage and a man cave. AJ: Or just a backyard somewhere. Somewhere besides the four walls of an apartment. But we like living in the city enough for now. Everything's so convenient.
Find out how other "Married at First Sight" couples have adjusted to quarantine life by checking out the full playlist here, and watch "Married at First Sight: Couples’ Cam" every Thursday at 8/7c on Lifetime.