So, we got Covid. Thankfully, it was mild, though persistent. Rob was our patient zero and the rest of us got it shortly after — though it took us a full 14 days to all test negative again. And while there were many stir-crazy and anxiety-filled moments during our quarantine, there were plenty of bright spots as well. We were extremely fortunate to have manageable symptoms, flexible work schedules, and plenty of support. Our friends Emily and John dropped off farmer’s market treats, my dad read to Lilly every day, and we got multiple shipments of ice cream (thanks, Annie and Kristen!). And, amazingly, we were able to borrow a friend’s house in Montauk for a few days for space and access to water.
As we reenter the world, I’m trying to maintain a little of the space we had when we do all our crazy running around. That means being more deliberate in what I schedule, not filling up every waking hour, and being more comfortable staying in place. And since I assume I have a short period of immunity, I’m hoping to do some group fitness classes and luxuriate in grocery shopping sans mask — at least for a month or so!
Here are a few other things I’m excited about this July:
Abortion rights, abortion rights: Specifically, making sure people have them. There is so much work to be done to ensure that people have access to safe abortions as well as general reproductive healthcare. I’m part of a group that meets weekly to hear from experts who are on the ground, and will continue to share what I learn here and on the “Abortion” highlight on my IG. I recently learned about M+A Hotline, a physician-founded and run organization that provides crucial support to people self-managing abortions. We also heard from If When How, a lawyer-led organization providing legal information, defense, and financial support. They run a Repro Legal Helpline to ensure callers can get legal info about self-managed abortion as well as Repro Legal Defense Fund to help with bail and legal fees for people who are investigated, arrested, or prosecuted for self-managing their abortion.
Finding my Climate Venn/fangirling Dr. Ayana: I am a huge admirer of Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson, marine biologist and climate expert who is doing incredible work engaging and activating people around climate solutions. In her recent TED talk, “How to Find Joy in Climate Action,” she explains how we can all find our role in the climate movement — namely through creating our own personal Climate Venn. In a world that feels increasingly bleak, her energy and optimism is incredibly energizing. I’m going to do my Venn this week and will share it! And if you aren’t familiar with Dr. Ayana, this interview with Krista Tippett is wonderful, and I loved her podcast “How to Save a Planet.” I’m also reading All We Can Save, an anthology she co-curated.
Gorgeous novel for water lovers (and everyone): I read Charmaine Wilkerson’s gorgeous Black Cake over our quarantine and loved it. It starts with two siblings untangling their family history and sprints across generations to explore family relationships, identity, and sense of self. While the story was wonderful, I especially loved the through line of water — ocean, swimming, surfing. It’s perfect for anyone (like me) who feels most at home near the water.
Magical color baths:Hayley sent us these color bath tablets and they were our Covid MVP. The tablets come in primary colors and different sizes so you can mix and match them to create different colored water. The kids were completely enthralled and we ended up taking midday baths on more days than one. Plus they don’t stain or irritate skin. I’m going to have to stock up.
Fort building 101: Our runner-up Covid prize goes to this fort builder, which Tamara gifted the kids last year. Lilly loved creating her personal house and crawling inside with a pile of books. The only trick was keeping Finn from destroying it…
Cocktail to perk you up: On the grown-up side, our big Covid discovery was how much we like frozen drinks. By day 8, I was feeling fine and craving a cocktail but my tastebuds were still off. I figured a bunch of bright citrus would help, and this Frozen Tom Collins absolutely hit the spot. The recipe is super simple: mix lemon, simple syrup, gin, then blend it all up and top with fancy cherries. It might be our new summer drink.
Snazzy and sporty goggles: Lilly loves swimming more than anything and has finally gotten the hang of it, thanks to a few Imagine Swimming intensives (highly rec). My sister got her and Finn these cute goggles, which seem to be more comfortable and watertight than her current pair.
Coming around to slugging: Late to the game, I know, but I finally tried slugging to try to help with my perpetually dry skin. Its verryyyy simple: I put on all my nighttime products (retinol, moisturizer) and then slathered on a final occlusive layer to seal it all in. I used Naturopathica Gotu Kola Balm but I have friends who swear by simple Aquaphor or Bag Balm. I’ve done it twice this week and have seen an immediate difference.
See you soon,