April 9, 2020

Some 'Shelter in Place' Favorites

My morning must-haves during shelter in place
I started this blog post a few weeks ago, when this whole quarantine/shelter in place thing had just begun. It was new and exciting, and I would be lying if I didn't admit that staying home for a week or two sounded pretty awesome. I love love love what I do, but as an introvert who loves quiet weekends at home, staying home for a whole week sounded quite lovely. I made a quarantine bucket list, signed up for free art journaling classes, wrote out a cleaning list, stacked up the books I wanted to read, etc. I was ready!

And then one week passed...and another week passed...and before I knew it, I had lost my momentum. I feel like I've been riding a rollercoaster with lots of ups and downs...and a few of those crazy upside down loops. I've felt relaxed, lonely, peaceful, sad, productive, lazy, content, fearful, refreshed, frustrated, calm, impatient, fulfilled, upset, optimistic, bored, safe, useless, encouraged, anxious, blessed, isolated, thankful, etc. Are you understanding why I'm using the rollercoaster comparison yet?

I'm sure many of you are experiencing these same feelings whether you live alone, with a roommate or spouse, have children running around the house, etc. We're all doing this for the first time and I think it's safe to say that nobody has a clue how to do this "well".

I completed a floral illustration during the first week of shelter in place.
By now you know how much I love Annie F. Downs. She is a podcaster/author/speaker/Instagram story-er and I just really enjoy her. Anyways, since all of this began, she has been asking herself the following question:
"How can I be healthier 
- emotionally, physically and spiritually - 
on the other side of this?" 
I've thought a lot about this, and truthfully, I get overwhelmed if I try to answer it. Why? Well, because I want to listen to this podcast and read that book and clean my apartment and organize my things and go for walks and cook more and establish a better sleep routine! I want to DO all of the things! But, here's what I've learned...I can also just be. I can sit with my feelings and journal. I can take walks and listen to podcasts. I can start every day by reading the Bible instead of checking social media. I can be slow and quiet and still be productive.

So...that's what I'm doing. I'm not being super productive in the idea that I'm doing a lot of projects or crossing a lot of tasks off of my to-do list, but I feel kind of productive. I'm taking things one moment at a time. I'm not putting as much pressure on myself. I'm learning to be slow and quiet...and productive.

With all of that said, I wanted to share some of my 'shelter in place' favorites with you! There are a handful of things that I make sure to catch every day/week, and I think they're worth sharing. I'm hoping maybe one of two of them encourages you in some way!

A few of my favorite things...

TSFQuarantine podcast: Again, my fav, Annie F. Downs, has been doing a daily quarantine podcast with another favorite of mine, Eddie Kaufholz. As you can see in the little photo above, they talk about everything from baby goats to jazz leadership. I often listen to this podcast while I'm out on a walk and I usually end up laughing out loud at some point. Good thing nobody is around to hear me!

Made Up Morning Show: I can't really link to this one since the shows are live each day (well, just Monday through Thursday actually). But these shows have been such a HUGE encouragement to me. I don't have many things written on my weekly schedule, but this is definitely on there! Jess Connolly and Katie Walters are sisters who decided to create a made-up morning show where they share tips for strength and joy...and they also just chat like two sisters.

Kitchen Covers: Drew & Ellie Holcomb, both singers with their own music, have been bringing these Kitchen Covers to Instagram every single day. They are covering a variety of artists and songs, and it's fun to check in each day and see what they've done. They're amazing performers! I've enjoyed each of them, but Wildflowers by Tom Petty has probably been my favorite so far!

CrossPoint prayer and worship: This church, based in Nashville, is one that I've "attended" online now for awhile...even before COVID-19. When I've stayed home from church on a Sunday for whatever reason, I've tuned into their service. I really enjoy hearing from their pastor and other members of their teaching team. One of those members is Annie F. Downs, which is how I heard of CrossPoint. Anyways, they are doing prayer and worship on YouTube twice a week (on Tuesdays and Thursdays I believe), and I've really enjoyed joining in on it each week.

Bridgetown Daily: This podcast comes out of Bridgetown Church in Portland, Seattle, which is pastored by John Mark Comer. I've read a few of John Mark's books, and I really enjoy reading/hearing about how he sees God and Sabbath, specifically. Anyways, Bridgetown is releasing daily podcasts focused on a variety of topics. They "tagline" for these podcasts is "A daily meditation on scripture, a quote, or the life of a saint to ground you in God and his peace." And I think we all need that right now.

Good News Movement: This is an Instagram account that has brought me so much joy! Basically, they share a little good news every day! Most of it is related to COVID-19, and it reminds me that we really are all in this together, figuring things out one day at a time.

There you have it. That's, more or less, what I've been up to over the past few weeks. I've also enjoyed many, many gorgeous sunsets from my balcony, as you can see above. I've baked chocolate chip banana bread. I've hosted weekly Zoom calls with my It Takes Courage 2.0 group, and started a Bible study via Zoom with two of my girls (past ITC teens who are now in college). I've participated in a variety of other Zoom calls, FaceTimed with my sister and the kids a lot more, read a few books, watched a handful for TV shows and movies...all of the normal things :)

As I wrap this post up, I hope that you will remember to have grace with yourself, and with others, during this time. I also hope that you will ask yourself how you can be healthier - emotionally, physically, spiritually - after this is over. And I hope you will enjoy these pretty doors!