Even in a Pandemic, There’s Good All Around Us
It’s not hard to find reasons for despair as we are all at home by law or by choice to stop the spread of COVID-19. But I’ve also found it surprisingly easy to find reasons to hope. Whether it’s Italians serenading each other from their balconies or people offering to get groceries for elderly strangers. It’s a strange, scary and beautiful time.
I hope this list of Good Things helps underline the beautiful this week. You’ll find ways to stay entertained, ways to grow and even ways to save some cash.
May Your Kindness Remain – Courtney Marie Andrews
I first heard May Your Kindness Remain a long time ago, but it feels prescient today. This is a beautiful song that tells a painful story through the strong but vulnerable voice of Courtney Marie Andrews, backed with some serious soul and plenty of open space.
May our kindness remain indeed.
As theaters shutter to help keep Covid-19 at bay, late night shows have had to soldier on without an audience, or just put everything on hold. It’s so strange to watch a late night host tell jokes without a laugh track, but on his third broadcast from home, I really feel Stephen Colbert is hitting his stride. I find myself laughing out loud and feeling an incredible amount of hope as Colbert does the best he can to entertain us armed with nothing but an iPad.
This is intimate, vulnerable content like we rarely, if ever, see.
How to Make The Most of Isolation
For all of us facing cancelled gigs or really any other kind of lost work beyond our control, there are some great lists popping up for alternate ways to spend the time well – and perhaps even earn a profit. Bree Noble has some good tips in her piece, 5 Things Musicians Can Do In The Next WEek to Start Making Money Online, and if 5 tips aren’t enough, Atomic Disc brings us 14 ways to advance your music career from the comforts of your home. Again, I believe a lot of these apply to more than musicians. I’m reminded of a Thomas Merton quote I came across this week by way of Roy Salmond’s newsletter, Between The Notes.
Challenges, yes. But also possibilities.
I’ve been using meal-planning service PlateJoy for about a year now, and since subscribing I haven’t looked back. Instead of a meal delivery service like Hello Fresh, PlateJoy offers curated meal-plans for any amount of meals you like, catered to the dietary needs and preferences of your family. The meals they choose are even tailored to the kitchen appliances you own (like an Instant Pot or food processor).
You put your information into PlateJoy and get a list of meals for the week and a list of groceries to buy to make those meals. The meals are coordinated to minimize waste, so you might use half a roast for one recipe and the other half for the next. It does feel weird buying 9 heads of broccoli, but I swear this has saved us hundreds of dollars and brought fantastic new foods to our table.
All of this seems more important in a time when we’re all cooking a lot more and can use some excitement on our table or anywhere else we can find it!
During these crazy times of self-isolation, PlateJoy is offering a totally free month.
Another service that has changed my life for the healthier, Daily Burn offers high quality online workouts you can do at home with minimal equipment (or most times, no equipment at all). They have programs tailored to your goals, or you can get a new 30 minute workout every day with their “Daily Burn 365” program, which I use five days a week.
I think the service is totally worth the subscription fee as it costs a lot less than going to the gym.
The best news? They are offering a free 60-day trial so people can stay moving during the pandemic.
Affinity Creative Suite
For the past few years, I’ve dropped Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator and used alternatives from a UK company called Affinity. I don’t like paying for apps every month where I can help it, and Affinity’s suite of creative apps, while being very capable, each cost only as much as a month or so of an Adobe Creative Cloud subscription.
Now, during the pandemic, you can try the Affinity suite of apps with a generous free 90-day trial. If you decide to buy any of their apps, you’ll save 50%.
Put that home time to good use and make something awesome!