Hi, hello, how are you (really)?
This is the start of every conversation with our family. With our friends. With each other! We’ve found a lot of comfort in face-to-face video chats, virtual happy hours with our neighbors and daily phone calls with those that we should probably be talking to every day anyway – regardless of this new reality. We’re slowing down at home. We’re ramping up with Two Flat designs. We’re this. We’re that. Really, we’re a little all over the place, and while it’s so easy to fall into the guilt trap (should Lucy be watching this much Peppa Pig?), we’re reminding each other that we’re doing the best we can. We’re doing what we can to feel safe and healthy (mentally and physically). There is no handbook for How to Live Your Life During COVID-19.
And when it comes to this place, our Yellow Brick Home, we will strive to be a bright spot in your day, a little slice of normalcy. We will (continue to) focus on building community, albeit at a slower pace. We will (continue to) check in on you, and hear me when I say: thank you for checking in on us. Your messages have warmed our hearts, and it’s a welcome reminder that we’re all in this together.
So today, I want to share the things that have made me happy this past week. Things that have kept us busy. Things that can help others! Throughout the uncertainty, we’ve been in awe of how our favorite small businesses have responded, how our favorite follows have shared their talents.
Things that made me happy
- I love Harry Styles. There. I said it.
- Celebrities are creating their own reality shows. (Yes, Busy!)
- The Shedd penguins take a field trip, and the cuteness is almost too much to bear.
- We’re all watching Daniel slay that hallway, right?
- All Everlane denim is $50 this week. The high waist button-fly is the most flattering fit!
- I could plaster my walls with everything in this Etsy shop.
- Day 24 of the quarantine. OMG.
- Take in one huge breath and then let it out.
- Leandra dresses Leandra. I can’t stop laughing!
Things to keep you busy
- Erin Loechner, founder of Other Goose, is giving you 3 free weeks to her curriculum. We signed up this week!
- Miss Beth of @bigcityreaders is reading books and singing songs to your kids, everyday at 10 AM CST on Instagram Live. She’s one to follow!
- Paint something pink, because obviously.
- The New York Times is offering daily writing prompts as a safe place to learn, grow and be creative.
- Spend time with Fiona, the world’s cutest hippo.
- Cook with Antoni. Yum.
- Make a terrarium!
- Binge watch a comfort show. This is when we turn to old favorites, like Parenthood, Friday Night Lights and My So-Called Life. Bring on the tears!
- Or Binge watch a guilty pleasure. May I suggest Love Is Blind?
Things that can help others
- A radical reframing of COVID-19.
- Video chat with your loved ones through Marco Polo. (Thank you, Julia, for getting me hooked on this app!)
- Make a big batch of soup and deliver it to the front step of those who need it most.
- Ask a friend for advice; let them know they’re needed.
- FaceTime with a friend while you eat dinner – together.
- Purchase gift cards from your favorite small businesses to use at a later date! We stocked up on Parson’s, Bang Bang Pie, Lonesome Rose and Middle Brow – our most frequent haunts.
We would absolutely love it if you used the comment section to share ideas and links to things that have brightened your days. Let’s all work towards uplifting each other. Stay safe and well, friends!
Daily doodle with Mo Willems (live broadcast at 1 pm EDT, archived on youtube): https://www.kennedy-center.org/education/mo-willems/
I have decided that Mo Willems is the hero we didn’t know we needed. I have cried every day watching him with my 6 year old.
Some friends and I had lunch delivered to the local homeless shelter staff to boost morale and support a small business. Front line workers need all the support, supplies, financial donations, and love we can give them right now!
Love this, thank you for what you’re doing!
I read a suggestion of buying gift cards to local restaurants and donating them to the hospital. Nurses get fed and small businesses get some support. Win win win
Donate money to your local food bank. They are seeing increases in the number of families who need help. Many are switching to ‘curbside’ pickup as well as reducing the number of volunteers, so they really need your help. Direct money donations go much further than product donations.
Make an appointment to donate blood! Supplies are low and a lot of us have a surplus of time.
Thank you for this! I suppose with a lot of states going into shelter-at-home, this may no longer be possible (or safe).
As an obgyn, any donation from those who feel comfortable doing so is GREATLY appreciated.
Thank you for chiming in!
Watching Laura Doherty’s Instagram and Facebook Lives! She’s an awesome children’s musician in Chicago!
Ohhh I gotta check that out, thank you!
Pay your people! If you have service people that used to come to your house regularly, but now must be cancelled, (For example cleaning people) continue to pay them. If you still have money coming in, make sure they still have money coming in.
If you have masks, gloves, or other protective equipment that you bought for a renovation or DIY project but haven’t used yet, please consider donating it to your local ER.
Hospitals around the country, particularly in cities, are rapidly running out. Which means the healthcare workers who are on the front lines are even more at risk, which then has ripple effects for everyone.
If you can’t find a local group organizing donations, making your own donation is super easy. here’s how it worked for me:
1. Google your local hospital’s ER phone number.
2. Call and when you reach a real person, tell them you’re calling about donating masks, gloves, or whatever you have. Be ready to tell them any specs you can find on the packaging (N95, NIOSH-approved, etc)., and whether the packaging is open or not. (Some hospitals are accepting open packages, others aren’t.)
3. If they can accept what you have, they’ll likely tell you where you can drop it off. In my case it was as easy as driving up to a designated entrance at the hospital and handing them out the window of my car.
As I see it, there’s no reason to let that stuff sit around in my garage when it could save someone’s life.
Is Marco Polo what you used for your insta date with Julia? How do you record that? Our family has enjoyed a free app, House Party, which has a few group games integrated kind of like headbandz and Apples to Apples, where you still get to see each other’s video while you play.
Yes, Marco Polo is what I use to talk with Julia and Sherry! It’s like a video chat, where you can record what you want to say to the group, and then they can watch it and reply whenever they have a moment. It’s great because you don’t need to schedule a time to talk, etc. You should try it!