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Weekly Good Things - Week 40
Hard days, taking leaps, and the weekly meal plan.
One of the reasons I started writing weekly Good Things years ago was as a way to keep myself from spiraling from thinking about the chaos in the world. A way to ground myself in the here and now. The practice of noting Good Things even during hard times is one of the things that consistently keeps me going.
For those of you having particular trouble context switching today - the week ahead, really at any time, know you are not alone.
As I’m sitting today, I have extended family and friends living in Israel who are currently in bomb shelters, and it’s hard to look away from the news. I’m angry. I’m sad. I’m afraid for our world. (Also: this week there was a cyber attack on 23andMe targeting Ashkenazi Jews. I’m worried about the next few years of election cycle, polarization, and brewing hate.)
It’s hard to celebrate small things (and big ones) when the news is bad, but I still think it’s important to do so. We have to give ourselves the energy to do the work repairing the world, and this process is one way I know how to do that.
This Week in Good Things:
I ran the Boston 10k for Women. I also encouraged Kathrine Switzer to take a leap with me. I’ve yet to master the leap plus normal smile, but succeeded in getting my signature “slightly unhinged but you bet I’m having fun” race photo. This was my 11th year running! (I love that I have notes from the first time here. Also this was the week before - I had not run more than 3.1 miles before running a 10k a few weeks later.)
So far, going strong with my daily 5 mile Walktober goal. Team BattleDuck “Allez Cuisine!” going strong!
I’ve been writing my Weekly Good Things on LinkedIn. Open call to my friends – if you need a little bit of accountability to start writing more frequently, I’m thinking of ways to do that, and would love to hear if you’d be interested.
A very small birthday celebration for someone’s milestone birthday (there was non-Pillsbury Funfetti cake and Hamburger Helper!)
Running into a friend and going for an impromptu walk. Making friends with strangers on our walks. Going an extra loop in the other direction to chat with neighbors.
Gently bullying someone into replacing their broken hearing aid, and finding out that they’ve made the appointment!
Gave a 10 minute talk for our Book Release party! Usually I don’t like watching videos of myself after the fact, but I was proud of this one.
Good Things to Think About
⌛️ How do we make time slow down? I’ve been listening to this week’s RadioLab episode about slowing down time. “Producer Sindhu Gnanasambandan wants to know how she can live the longest feeling life possible. The answer leads her on a journey to make one week feel like two. And the journey leads her to a whole new answer.” Some of the secrets are about (perhaps unsurprisingly) looking back at your day/week/life and working to make memories. Listen here.
📣 Where can you use your voice? This week I had to drum up the courage to say something about some bad behavior. While I’m not personally bothered by much, I believe that it’s important to speak up when others might not be able to. (The fact that it was scary – even for someone who doesn’t shy away from speaking her mind - validated my speaking up.)
🟢 Do you have trouble starting things? I was talking with a friend this week about task initiation - ie: how to get things rolling. My brain often has a hard time getting started, so sometimes I have to “trick it” into getting things rolling. Some of the ways I do this include: setting a timer, tying the task to another task, or outlining the task. I’m enjoying my Twitter friend Jesse Anderson’s new book “Extra Focus” this week.
Other Good Things
Are you familiar with the portrait artist Devon Rodriguez? He’s a street artist with a massive internet following. His quick portraits are incredible - he draws people in the wild, and then hands them the portrait. Other times he draws someone as he interviews them about their life. I loved this video interview (and drawing) with Kim Sajet, director of the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery.
If you generally like the genre of street interviews - I’d also recommend watching Victor Fontanez a.k.a. Vic Blends - who gives amazing haircuts to people in public, and talks to them about their hopes and dreams.
It’s Spooky Lake Month - where artist and educator Geo Rutherford goes deep into the history and hydrology of spooky lakes, all month long! I absolutely love her videos and always learn something new. Here’s the first video in the series. I usually watch her stuff on TikTok, but linking Instagram here.
We are wrapping up Fat Bear Week. If you need to explore bears, brackets, and learn more about Alaska, you have a few more days to do it!
I asked the internet where to find a Maple Creemee in the Greater Boston area. The answer is (sometimes) Momma’s Grocery in Cambridge.
The Weekly Meal Plan:
I’m again relying on Feast and Fettle to do some of the heavy lifting on days when I’m exhausted and having decision fatigue.
Sunday: Mediterranean chicken stew
Monday: Orzo with roasted eggplant & tomato
Tuesday: Beef kofta meatballs with tzatziki sauce, roasted cauliflower.
Wednesday: Linguine with pesto and tomatoes
Thursday: Herb crusted pork tenderloin with cranberry sauce, mashed sweet potatoes, kale harvest salad with bacon and shallot vinaigrette
Friday: Fox & the Knife with Kathy! (Our monthly dinner series!)
Lunches: chicken and wild rice soup, roasted beets and gorgonzola, TJs quick grab burrito, salad with salmon, another salad with miso chicken, F+F Mac and cheese, yogurt with mix-ins.
Snacks: hard boiled eggs, overnight oats, cottage cheese, yogurt.
Treat: a huge nod to Somchay for bringing me Honey Pot Hill Cider Donuts.
My current coffee at home: Trader Joe’s Shade Grown Espresso Blend, a splash of half and half, a spoonful of Trader Joe’s vanilla bean paste, and a few splashes of Burlap + Barrel Cardamom extract.
Some current food inspiration:, from , I’ll be curious to see the new from .
That’s all for now! Hope you have a great week!
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