Friday Flotsam


Wow, what a week.

Between school closures (for the rest of the year, omg), restaurants reduced to curbside only, and the news becoming grimmer and grimmer by the hour, the whole world just bottomed out, didn’t it?

You know this already, I’m not here to magnify the negative. But I DID want to check in on you. See how you all are. And ask for homeschooling tips omg.

Honestly I’m dangling between two scenarios. One – the Hollywood apocalyptic scene where the streets are completely deserted, cupboards are bare and dusty with a lone spider cruising through the frame, a leaky faucet dripping in an empty high school hallway, everything is filthy. And two – the one where here in a few months we’re semi back to normal. Restaurants and cafés bustle, parks are packed with happy families standing more like, three feet away from each other, and people are able to work again, in an office, without a knot in their stomach.

And I can’t decide which one is naive, a false hope, a true reality, or absolutely possible. Maybe I just need a taco. And homeschooling tips.

One week in. We can do this.


Here are things that gave me joy this week, made me laugh, or completely humbled me. And I’d love you to share yours because dude.

  1. Last weekend I was shopping at Trader Joe’s, and of course all the pasta was gone, except QUINOA. Nobody wanted the poor little white quinoa! People be like, “I will STARVE to death before eating that ish.” I laughed and laughed and laughed.

2. Cory Branan and The Indigo Girls (separately, natch) giving living room performances on Instagram Live! Amy and Emily sat six feet apart of course. Intimate shows that seriously helped lift the mood. I know they’ll be doing more, so look out for that type of thing if you’re into music. Which you’re a human being so yes you’re into music.

3. Also, Zooming with my girl friends last night. Did absolute wonders. We laughed, we joked about normal things, and not-so-normal things. We had a little road trip planned for next weekend in Eureka Springs, which is obviously not happening. (I remember a time, not long ago when I thought it was possible! Isn’t that wild? Like what on earth.) Listen up, remember that you need alone time. (ironic words to write during isolation) But lots of you are at home 100% of the time now with a partner, a spouse and small or big children. Rememberrememberremember to step aside from it all. Sit on a blanket alone in your backyard and listen to your jams. Yes I said jams. Lock yourself in the bathroom and paint your toe nails next to a bottle or box of wine. Maybe in the dark, listen I’m not here to judge.

4) Sleeping in. I’ve been sleeping in! This week we’re giving each other grace by sleeping in as late as possible since none of us have to be out the door by 7:50am. While I miss the structure (we’ll get it back soon) I have to admit it’s felt RIDIC good. I recommend it for a week.

5) We’re deep into Doodle Sessions with Mo Willems on YouTube and you guys, I’m just gonna say it – dude’s hot. He’s straight up good looking and I’m not ashamed to admit it. MAMAS, TELL ME YOU AGREE. I cannot and will not be alone in this. Wait, did you just x out?

6) I’m still reading The Nightingale. I’ll tell you, it’s been really hard to read this week. Too distracted, too exhausted, unable to concentrate. But it’s cold all weekend, so I absolutely plan on making loooads of progress. There’s an eerie parallel with this book and the current times. Paris locked down and blacked out. The struggle to survive and figure out next steps. Haunted. Gives me goosies. Yes I said goosies.

7) Thelonious Monk! He’s given me so much happiness this week. I highly urge you turn him on and zone out. Clean up the house, marinate chicken for tacos tonight. Work on a puzzle with ze kids (after watching hottie Mo, of course.) Wait – Mo and Monk! It’s our new quarantine movement, you guys. I’ll make bumper stickers. But I’ll have them delivered because, you know.

I know we’re all finding an adjustment in the shock. But tell you what, week two of this lies ahead. And the news will be grim. But let’s find a way to move forward in it together. We have to keep moving forward. “One foot in front of the other” – like the fabulous Drew Barrymore preaches.

Please keep sending me funny links in IG. I’ll keep giving you good news when I can. And listen, I know it can be a mix of comfort and obnoxiousness when people say, “it’s going to be okay.” Because the reality is, some things won’t be okay. But I think the “okay” we all experienced in January will look vastly different in the weeks and months to come. Eventually, in some way, it will be okay. Because we’ll have to redefine what “okay” means. Feel what you’re feeling right now. You’re not alone. None of us are. THANK GOD FOR THE INTERNET. Because if they took that away, oh haaaaaail no.

Love to you all.

(now about those homeschooling tips…)

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11 Responses to Friday Flotsam

  1. Nancy March 20, 2020 at 10:36 am #
    I look forward to Friday Flotsam every week so thank you for this piece of happiness today! My son is grown so I'm not having to deal with home schooling but I sent you a link to a feed in IG of an ocean photographer that is doing weekly "lessons' on ocean life and I must say his photos are gorgeous and I learned about walruses this week. Totally interesting. The only other reference in my life to walruses is a little ditty by The Beatles called "I am the Walrus". Sad, I know. But I just looked the song up and interestingly enough, the first lyrics seem very applicable to what we are all feeling right now, " I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together". And speaking of music, I have watched two live concerts on IG and I am here for it!! Today at 1:00 PST, Mandy Moore and Taylor Goldsmith are going to do one. But I bet you already knew that. That's all I've got. Hang in there! P.S. my user name on IG is @furlinky if you are interested in looking for the feed mentioned above.
  2. Leslie Degenhardt March 20, 2020 at 11:40 am #
    OMG!! I thought I was the only one who thought Mo Willems was hot! It feels so good to let that out!!!
  3. Heather O'Neill March 20, 2020 at 11:48 am #
    I'm having a hard time trying to read too. I've been homeschooling my kids since kinder (I have a 3rd & 6th grader now) and although I use curriculum that I've purchased & my kids are part of a distant learning program, if I was new to the homeschooling game I would do lots of reading with the kids (we already do a lot of this), play some fun math games (online, like Prodigy (starts at 1st grade) or if you have any board games that involve math). Do some art & science projects. Watch some educational videos and call it a day. Nothing too rigorous during these crazy times. Wendy Mac, Carson Ellis, & Cassie Stephens are all good sources of art projects for the kids on Instagram. You've already got geography down with the postcards!
  4. Tobi March 20, 2020 at 5:47 pm #
    I’m living for the cherry blossom photo and this Friday Flotsam. The first day I worked from home (yesterday), I made your rustic cheesy yeast bread recipe. I started the dough totally on impulse Wednesday night. I’ve never attempted a yeast bread but had everything to make it so I went for it, and it calmed me down so much. The process, the smell of bread baking, and then YAY I have amazing bread when the panic buyers have scarfed up all the loaves in the store. You are spot on with the parallels to Nightingale. One of the things that gave me angst while reading it was how her pantry dwindled, yet she still made do. Such a great book. We can do this!
  5. Rose-Anne March 20, 2020 at 6:21 pm #
    Hi! I have 8 years old boy/girl twins and introduced them to tiping. They use tape-touche (but i'm french)... So they don't speak english yet. They just LOVE it cause it's kid friendly with games etc... I think it's a great tool to have. I wish i had examples of some in english but surely they exist. 😉 Thank you for all your helpfull tips. 👌 💕💕
  6. Renae March 20, 2020 at 6:27 pm #
    How are you? I love that you care about us, but know that we also care about you. I keep thinking about your beautiful Nat, and her brilliant comparison to a painting. I am already ready for the frame to open up, but for now I will take deep breaths and go get drive-thru coffee and read as much as I can. I ordered two new puzzles yesterday, and am doing the homeschool thing too. It’s new, it’s hard, but teachers are nothing of not gracious. I love them all! They know we’re trying, and that’s what matters. Be well!! 💕 P.S. we are all sleeping in too!!
  7. Lindsay March 21, 2020 at 2:37 am #
    You're amazing Bev. I second alllll the things you said about these nutty times we're in ✨Thanks for being you, and being honest. It's so comforting to know my brain isn't alone 🥰 Next tlme ya'll are in Portland, (because I'm an eternal optimist, and it WILL HAPPEN - sorry for yelling) I'd love to treat you to a mimosa brunch at my fave secret spot in SE 🧡
  8. Maria March 21, 2020 at 1:19 pm #
    Hi Bev, Maria from Portugal here. We are in an 'national emergency' status since last wednesday. All closed except hospital, pharmacies, supermarkets and a few other essential services. It's so strange that all of a sudden the streets, roads, highways are almost empty... unfortunately Spain and Italy are even worse. But we hope that when we get to the end of this tunnel we're in now, we'll be stronger and wiser. Keep safe all of you
  9. Jillian March 22, 2020 at 10:24 am #
    Props to all you parents, I think it’s hard enough keeping my dogs entertained, let alone little humans. It’s been inspiring to see everyone coming together and getting creative. Keep on, keeping on, and support your local businesses (buy gift cards if you’re not feeling up to purchasing things right now, it still helps!)
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