Posts Tagged ‘living the vida corona’

Silver Linings

April 2, 2020

Life in New York City has been pretty tough these days. We have been quarantined for almost 3 weeks, and the end is nowhere in sight. Everything non-essential is closed and we are walking around with masks and gloves, avoiding one another like they have the plague, because, frankly, they might. All of my catering events have been canceled, and the restaurants I work with are shuttered. Temporary mobile morgues are lining the streets. I know more people that are suddenly unemployed or furloughed, than those who still have jobs. It’s easy to get depressed with a lack of income, lack of entertainment and a complete lack of hope. Just when my reserves of patience and optimism had been almost depleted, replenishment arrived in some unexpected ways.

About a week or two ago, I launched a meal service for my community providing fresh, homecooked meals to my neighbors. I was surprised at the response, and I have a small and growing little group of people who are ordering from me regularly. I’m not raking in big bucks by any means, but I am keeping busy, generating a small income, and serving my immediate community in the process. I get excited by their orders and am grateful for their praise when they love their meal. Although I have not met any of them during my contact-free deliveries, I believe that our communications are a thread that keeps some of them connected to the world around them as they fear to venture out during this time.

Today, a friend asked me to make some meals for a team at one of the local hospitals. She got wind that her coworkers on the front lines were existing on pop tarts and cup noodles. Hardly the fuel they need to get through the endless days and nights filled with patients dying alone while their family says goodbye on an Ipad. The act of cooking them a meal and bringing it to the hospital brought me a great sense of satisfaction. If seeing the boxes of thoughtfully prepared, fresh food brought them even a fleeting moment of joy, then I am humbled to be a part of that. As for my friend who gifted them this meal anonymously and prides herself on being a Grinch, I have to say she is failing at that role miserably.

But here is where the real magic took place… I posted a photo of the meal on my social media channels and the positive comments started rolling in. Someone from out of town immediately contacted me to offer a generous donation to provide more meals for the front line workers. I reached out for contacts at other hospitals and was flooded with people connecting me to other people who worked in local hospitals. I am getting messages from friends of friend’s friends, who came together to make this happen. I am beyond touched by the generosity of people who are offering to subsidize the feeding of total strangers, and those across the country making connections to help. I hope I can continue to pay it forward and show how much our medical professionals mean to us in a dire time. If you would like to subsidize an ER or ICU group, please email me at indigojonesnyc@gmail.com. I am not sure of the logistics yet, but I am quickly getting up to speed as to how to make this movement grow.

The bright light in these dark times?
We may be physically distancing right now, but we are not social distancing. In fact, we are coming together in ways I never thought possible, and that is filling my heart and soul with the hope that we can get through this together.

UPDATE: We have a Go Fund Me page! Between that and private donations we have surpassed $3000 and the number is going up by the hour. THANK YOU!

 

The Other Covid-19

March 28, 2020

We’ve all heard of the dreaded Freshman 15, which refers to the 15 pounds many college freshmen put on as they adjust to being away from home and ease into dorm life filled with midnight pizza runs, underage binge drinking and other less than healthy habits. Today I’m here to talk about The COVID 19. Not the virus strain itself, but the phenomenon that after being quarantined for weeks or months on end with a pantry filled with shelf-stable snacks, a freezer filled with pizzas, tacos and vodka, and the desire to find comfort in a bag of Cheetos with a double stuff oreo chaser, will result in an average weight gain of 19 pounds.*

(* Mileage may vary )

Add in the additional bonus of not being able to leave the house, and it’s almost guaranteed.

The goods news is, not every freshman gains weight, and you don’t need to either. ( At least not 19 pounds!)

Here are some tips to avoid The COVID-19 and survive “living the vida corona.”

Fill the freezer and cupboards with healthy choices. I realize that we aren’t going to be able to eat fresh food every day, and for me, the risk of going to the grocery store outweighs my desire to have fresh fish and vegetables on hand.

Not every meal is going to be a healthy one, but we can utilize frozen fish filets, chicken breasts, and shrimp, and well as frozen vegetables to create balanced, healthy and satisfying meals. Eggs stay fresh for many weeks at a time if properly stored in the refrigerator. Have we eaten pasta? Sure. But it isn’t the only option for making a meal during the quarantine. Embrace the lowly bean and all the wonderful benefits they hold. They are cheap, shelf-stable and nutritious and versatile. What’s not to love?

Don’t buy junk food  I know that sounds blithe and maybe even a bit condescending, but if it’s not there, you can’t eat it. I don’t recommend starving. But I do recommend taking the temptation out of the equation. Dire times call for dire measures people. Eat an apple (if you have one).

Be mindful of your alcohol consumption: Here we are, anxious and bored, and in need of something to boost our spirits. Don’t let that default be, well spirits. I am not here to preach about abstinence. I too enjoy a nice glass of red. But we are likely to be in this situation for a long time, and several months of over-consumption of alcohol can leave us with dependency issues we might not recognize, as well as much tighter pants. ( Seriously, when was the last time you wore pants with a zipper? ) Try some herbal tea, and listen to a guided meditation or practice controlled breathing. You might just find these alternatives calming, and you may feel better the next morning as a result.

MOVE! While New York has some of the most stringent rules for isolation, it has been decreed safe to leave the house to walk, run or do other solitary activities outside, as long as we keep a safe physical distance from others. I have walked the dog, and run along the river a few times, and it makes me feel so much better. It’s important to be conscious of those around you to ensure that there is always at least six feet between you and them. On the days that you don’t leave the house, there are plenty of gyms and studios offering free online workouts that you can do at home. I have seen them at all levels and durations. You don’t need any equipment for most of them, and a good sweat might ease some of the anxiety of being cooped up. Check out some of the popular health and fitness sites such as Self, Women’s Health or Men’s Health, Popsugar Fitness, Fitness, Well + Good, and Equinox’s site Furthermore for home workouts and other tips.

Don’t beat yourself up over it: If you do in fact gain weight, or lose hard won stamina and muscle tone, don’t beat yourself up over it. We are literally fighting for our lives. This is hard. REALLY hard. Do what you need to do to get through this, and stay as healthy as possible. If that means new jeans when this is over, at least you will be supporting the economy. Just be kind to yourself.

What are you doing to beat The Covid 19 during the quarantine?


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