The spring holidays of Passover and Easter were atypical this year, weren't they? Families were unable to gather for Seder dinners, or attend services in their Easter finery, and may instead have participated in "virtual" holiday celebrations. The Easter Bunny still found most families with young children, but the baskets were possibly not quite as overflowing, and egg hunts were in your own backyard. Seder dinner tables were set – sometimes for only one or two people. And maybe instead of an Easter ham, you dined on pizza... And instead of the Seder quote of "Next Year in Jerusalem," one of my daughters said "Next Year In Person." But you know what? It’s all perfect. We are doing what we need to be doing right now. And we are fortunate to have that option. It’s easy to get caught up in everything that couldn’t happen, but today I want us to recognize gratitude for what IS happening all around us.
1. I am grateful for the entire medical community. Of course, Doctors and Nurses, but also all of the Allied Health professionals, housekeepers who keep hospital rooms clean and disinfected, hospital management teams, IT workers who keep the charting & computers online, EMTs, ambulance drivers, food service workers….and near and dear to my heart, PATIENT ACCESS Teams.
2. I am grateful for those working in retail. This includes actual in-store employees AND delivery drivers who keep the supply chain flowing. All of these people risk their own health to serve consumers, and probably put up with more rotten behavior than they should. Give them grace! And a smile and thanks. I'm also incredibly grateful for the farmworkers, diligently working to provide us with fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as all of those who help bring food to our table.
3. I am grateful for the delivery services. The US Postal Service, UPS, Amazon, Fedex & DHL drivers are all working overtime. The folks in the warehouses are busting their butts to ensure that we all receive whatever we have ordered today, necessity or not. And, of course, the Door Dash, GrubHub, PostMates, UberEats and Instacart drivers who deliver prepared food and groceries to our homes, while we shelter in place.
4. Speaking of restaurants, I am grateful that I can still enjoy many of our favorite and restaurant cuisine just by ordering, paying and showing up! The local restaurant communities are totally showing up for us and we should support them by ordering take out whenever possible. Even the large chain restaurants employ local people, so don’t completely boycott them! (Shoutout to a local gem, Rosanna's Pasta Shop - not only are they continuing to produce their amazingly delicious dishes, but they are also feeding staff members at area emergency departments. Customers can support this local business and show appreciation to our frontline healthcare workers by sponsoring a catered meal delivered by Rosanna's. Win/Win!)
5. I am grateful for utility workers who, without fail, pick up my waste, keep my internet signal strong allowing me to work from home, and ensuring that we can shelter in place in comfortable homes with gas, electricity and cable/satellite TV. And while I'm at it, I'm grateful for the technology that allows us to have Zoom conferences and stream content on demand. *I'm old enough to remember when the World Wide Web was not a thing*
6. I am grateful for all the “helpers” who are shopping for friends who can't leaving their homes, sewing masks, mowing neighbors’ lawns, sending a positive Facebook message, picking up the phone and just generally caring. If anything good comes of this whole situation, I hope that we will value kindness in our society
7. Finally, I am grateful for YOU! While we are obviously not able to travel right now, this too shall pass. I’m grateful for this community of would-be travelers, clients and friends, who all share the dream of exploring the world when it is safe to do so. And it will be. Your patience, support and flexibility have truly been a blessing during this very trying time in my entrepreneurial journey and I thank you all!
Keep Calm and Wash Your Hands,
PS: On a very personal note, I am grateful for the safe birth of my first great nephew - born last week in Utah. He is my dad's first great-grandchild. Mother and baby are doing well - and what a story they will have to tell...
HAVE CHILDREN OR GRANDCHILDREN? HERE'S A UNIQUE ACTIVITY TO CREATE A MEMORY OF THESE SHELTER-IN-PLACE DAYS - CLICK THE BUTTON ON THE RIGHT TO DOWNLOAD ACTIVITY SHEETS
Natalie Long is a graphic designer and mom from Canada. She created "My 2020 COVID-19 Time Capsule" worksheets as a way for her now eight-year-old daughter, Olivia to keep track of what is happening day-to-day. Long shared the worksheets on her Facebook page, making them available to the public. The 11-page document consists of various activities like interviewing parents, listing favorite foods, and writing a letter to themselves.
For many years, my favorite restaurant was Va Pensiero, located in Evanston, Illinois. It was my “Cheers” – where everyone knew my name. Besides having a fabulous menu and an all-italian wine list, Chef Peggy Ryan, the founder of “Va-P” taught cooking classes – I still use many of her recipes. Periodically, Va P would host winemaker dinners, pairing wines with their menu. One special dinner was a variation; it featured a menu from Florence’s Trattoria Garga (which I subsequently had the good fortune to visit several times.) Garga offered a simple and delicious Arugula Salad – and I was delighted to find the recipe in the Williams- Sonoma Florence Cookbook. Click the button on the right for my adaptation - I think these ingredients should be readily available.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.