It’s a heavy time right now. We have been hugging each other and our baby girl close this weekend, as I’m sure you’ve been doing with your loved ones too. I dove into work headfirst to be productive today. And on one hand, it was helpful, yet on the other, it made me feel guilty that I’m able to do that and “forget” about what’s going on in Ukraine.
Additionally, “productive” for me means creating and posting lighthearted content that seems so frivolous that it makes me feel even more guilty. Yet, I’m also craving normalcy. And I know that everyone else is wanting a break in the doom scrolling as well. What’s the right balance? I never know. I’m overwhelmed, I know how lucky I am, I’m scared. I feel helpless yet want so desperately to be helpful. I’m sick of this two-year nightmare of events that seemingly will never stop. I’m grateful that I have the immense privilege to shut off my phone and turn on Netflix and tune it out. I know you’re probably feeling the same way, and I don’t have any answers. But I hope knowing we’re all feeling 1000 different emotions right now might provide some solidarity. And today, I thought I would share some things that you may find helpful.
First, this graphic really helped me feel validated/seen this morning.
Second, who I’m following right now:
@EmilyInYourPhone and @SharonSaysSo are both highly knowledgeable follows with backgrounds in US government. They break down what’s happening in understandable terms. I’m also following @Echo_Mass (Olga) who is a Ukranian Chicago based influencer that happened to be in Kyiv visiting her mom when the bombing began. She and her mother were able to escape safely across the border in Poland now but has documented her entire journey and continues to share resources on how to help those in Ukraine. (See her highlights as well!)
I’m trying to make a point of not just *scrolling* and just going to specific accounts that I know are going to help break things down in a non click bait-y, straightforward manner.
Also, how to avoid falling for and spreading misinformation about Ukraine
It’s SO easy to do, and right now it’s more important than it has ever been to ensure what you’re sharing isn’t misinformation. This article from the Washington Post is an important read on how to ensure what you’re reading is authentic.
Where to donate to support Ukrainians:
Re-sharing this list from NPR:
UNICEF- supports health, nutrition, HIV prevention, education, safe drinking water, sanitation and protection for children and families caught in the conflict in Ukraine.
Médecins Sans Frontieres/Doctors Without Borders- runs a range of activities in Ukraine working with local volunteers, organizations, health care professionals and authorities to help people travel to health care facilities and access prescribed medications.
Voices of Children– The Ukrainian organization’s Charitable Foundation helps provide psychological and psychosocial support to children affected by the armed conflict, according to its website.
Sunflower of Peace– The nonprofit organization is raising money to prepare first aid medical tactical backpacks for paramedics and doctors on the front lines.
International Committee of the Red Cross– This Switzerland-based organization is aiming to help people affected by the conflict and support the work of the Ukrainian Red Cross.
Save the Children- helps to deliver lifesaving aid to vulnerable children in Ukraine and around the world.
UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR)- aims to provide emergency assistance to families in Ukraine — providing aid such as cash assistance and opportunities for resettlement in the U.S.
CARE- is raising money for its Ukraine Crisis Fund, which will provide immediate aid including food, water, hygiene kits, support services and direct cash assistance, prioritizing women and girls, families and the elderly.
International Medical Corps– has been delivering primary health care and mental health services in eastern Ukraine since 2014, and is raising funds to expand those services for people affected by the latest conflict.
When the world feels heavy I need a fluffy page turner to help me tune out. Reading helps me so much more in a way that binge-watching a show cannot. We often fall into the same old dinner and Netflix binge trap night after night. But that does not calm my nerves like getting lost in a book can. I have been reading a lot of Elin Hilderbrand for that reason lately and I highly recommend diving into one of her books this week. I just finished the three book Paradise series followed by The Golden Girl (haha–had to read it for the name alone!) and now I’m reading The Blue Bistro.
After I hit “publish” on this post, I’m going to pick up June from daycare followed by a long walk. I haven’t been outside since Saturday. I know that’s definitely not helping me mentally. (More ways to get more out of your daily walk here.)
Decluttering and cleaning:
Our house is an absolute wreck. I plan to go through a major closet purge and also attempt to get the house back in order and hopefully induce some semblance of calm in that area. You all shared so many decluttering and organizing tips in this post!
Easy weeknight meals:
This will be my second week of HungryRoot and I was so grateful our box arrived today! (They are not a sponsor and I’m just a regular customer and purchased with my own $$ but I did ask for a discount code and they were so nice to give me one! JESSKEYS50 will give you half off your first order!)
As you know I love Blue Apron but I have had even less time/lost the desire to cook, so we hit pause on that and I decided to give HungryRoot a try. (Their food is very health-focused and a lot of the protein is pre-cooked. So all you have to do is sauté some pre-chopped veggies, pour on a sauce, etc!) It’s really more like healthy groceries that are pre-designed to save you as much time as possible when combining them all into a meal! In times of stress especially it really comes in handy.
And to make you smile…June tried her first French fry:
I will leave you with this anecdote from the weekend: We were out to dinner with friends and their baby who is the same age as June (which was a riot). When our food came, June leaned over and just swiped a French fry off of Neal’s plate and popped it in her mouth as if she’s done it 100 times before! She’s officially my child.