Resources During This Time of Social Distancing, April 10, 2020

It is Good Friday and we are facing into the passion of Christ. In our own ways each of us is experiencing this Holy Week in a different way than ever before; carrying our own crosses, and feeling deeply troubled by what we and the whole world are experiencing- fearful of what is yet to come. The Resurrection come, but before that we have to experience these little deaths to our old ways of being, our old ways of living and to the expectations we held of how life would be. May we walk this path with Christ again, and may it bring us new understandings and insights and may we find hope in the promise of resurrection.

Here are some new resources to discover, laugh and giggle over, reflect on, and just enjoy!


Resources for Keeping Informed About the Coronavirus

This article in the Atlantic offers a balanced perspective on how long we will need to be social distancing.

All you need to know about what filing for unemployment or how to skip your loan payments during this time of economic uncertainty is right here!

NPR now has charts that show the projected peaks, numbers contracting the virus and death rates by individual state. For MD the peak is predicted to be on April 19.

Let’s try to avoid what happened in Wisconsin! Fill out an application to receive an absentee ballot for the upcoming elections. This is for MD, but you can get one for DC and VA by Googling “How to request an absentee ballot.” Let’s be safe but let’s VOTE!

Wondering why you are crushing on Dr. Fauci or Andrew Cuomo? Here’s why.

Resources from the Earth and Spirit Mission Group

This is an incredibly enchanting little 4 min film by Louis Schwartzberg(one of my favorite Nature filmmakers) that magically depicts  the beauty of pollination.

Minnesota-based illustrator and animator

Anna Taberko has been producing a lovely series of kaleidoscopic animations where flowers, seed pods and butterflies morph into each other to create self-sustaining loops.

Resources For Sustaining Your Spiritual Life

During Holy Week many people walk the stations of the cross in remembrance of Christ’s Passion. Since we cannot do that this year, Rolling Ridge offers us a virtual opportunity.

Resources for Food Assistance

Food Assistance




  • Food Assistance Resource Directory (location, hours, and eligibility guidelines for 100+ sites in MoCo where residents can access food and benefit application assistance)


Resources for Cooking

I don’t know about you but I am running out of ideas on what to make for meals these days. I have found Lauren’s blog helpful to give me some new ideas!

From Erica:

Maybe it’s only my mom and me who are baking/cooking up a storm right now, but some favorite recipes I’ve tried recently:

Resources for Mental Health, Wellness and Emotional Well Being.

Sallie sent this:

This is something a friend forwarded to me which I thought might be useful to share with Seekers. This File of Life Packet and especially the form where you fill in your medical history would be very helpful if you had to go to the hospital, especially if you live alone. So hard to think of all these things when you are in an emergency situation.

Description: The File of Life packet enables Montgomery County Fire and Rescue personnel to obtain a quick and accurate medical history when a patient is unable to provide it. The File of Life provides a way to document an individual’s existing medical conditions, allergies, current medications, as well as an area to list contact information for their doctor, family members, insurance information and any other special circumstances that rescue personnel should know in caring for a patient. For additional information about the File of Life Program, please click on the first link below.

The fastest way to obtain a File of Life form is to click on the second link below and print out the form. Complete the form and hang on the front or side of your refrigerator. The instructions are available in both English and Spanish however the insert should ONLY be filled out in English. If you are unable to print the form, please submit a Service Request by clicking on the “Create Service Request” button below and providing the requested information with an asterisk. In the Brief Description Field, put “File of Life Form Request”. Forms/magnetic sleeves are typically mailed out within 5 days, although due to the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak, it may take longer.

For more information you may visit the following websites:

File of Life Information

File of Life Printable Form

Elizabeth reminds us:

PEP continues to offer resources for families and children about the Coronavirus.

Anita sent me this link from the AARP:

“If you’re feeling socially isolated, you can use AARP Community Connections to ask for a phone call from an AARP volunteer Mondaythrough Friday 9 am to 5 pm EDT.  Call1-888-281-0145 or share this number with others.”

Here are some more mental health resources:

EveryMind Specialists are available 24/7 to listen and provide support to either you or a loved one. This service is free and open to all members of our community. You do not have to be in crisis to connect with EveryMind. Reach out even if you are just looking for ways to support someone you are concerned about.  Call/Text: 301.738.2255 or Chat:


·        Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Manage Anxiety and Stress

·        National Center for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Managing Stress Associated with COVID-19 Virus Outbreak

·        National Association of School Psychologists Talking to Children About COVID-19 (Coronavirus): A Parent Resource

·        American Psychological Association Five Ways to View Coverage of the Coronavirus

·        Harvard Medical School Coping with Coronavirus Anxiety

Resources for Making You Laugh and Entertained

Because there is nothing better than watching dogs and a cat playing at the beach to the music “Happy” by Pharrell Williams:

Footloose through the movies!

German choral group sings about Corona virus as only they can!

Meet Henri the existential cat. If you have not yet met, Henri is a cat of great insight into the existential realities of life. It doesn’t hurt that he is French, either.

Speaking of cats, our daughter Marian who is working from home, texted us recently that during an important tele-conference her cat decided it was an opportune time to hack out a hairball! It seems like Marian is not alone in trying to navigate this bold new world where our pets are our office mates during work hours. Here is a story where a formal complaint was made against cat co-worker!

Sir Patrick Stewart reads a sonnet a day:

The Metropolitan Museum in London now has many of its galleries open virtually! What a fabulous way to see their amazing collections from your couch!

I am noticing that I am not really interested in “good for you” or “heavy” movies right now. If you are like me this collection of 22 Rom-com (romantic comedies) is just what you need right now!

Suddenly classical music has become very important to us.

The N.Y. philharmonic will live stream past performances.

Go to  and then click on NY PHIL PLAYS ON to see what is playing!

Here is a list of all the other live virtual concerts you can live stream as well:

Are you finding that you just need something calming and that  reinforces the goodness of people and the world? Then these next two items are just what you need.

All 403 episodes of The Joy of Painting with Bob Ross are now streaming for free!  and

Mr. Rogers Neighborhood is also streaming free at

TV and Movies recommended by Seekers

From Julie:

Movies: Amelie, Chicago, Adaptation & Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

From William:

Movies: The Prestige, Rushmore, Fantastic Mr. Fox, Kill Bill

If you like foreign films, here are a few Hong Kong / Chinese films and directors we both love:

In the Mood for Love by Wong Kar Wai;

Hero by Zhang Yimou;

Infernal Affairs by Andrew Lau (The Departed, which does not compare, was a remake of this)

TV shows we (mostly) both love:

Drama: The Good Wife, The Americans

Fun/ny: The Good Place, Parks & Rec, Community

Sci Fi: Person of Interest, Fringe

From Erica :

For TV I’ve been bing-watching the Great British Baking Show on Netflix – I know it’s been around a while but it’s just SO delightful.

John Krazisnki (aka Jim from “The Office”) is doing an at-home “news” show called Some Good News that is really heartwarming – Episode 2 has a special treat for fans of “Hamilton!”

Also, Humans of New York is doing a series focusing on happy stories (most of his work is generally uplifting, but right now he’s specifically focusing on all the good people out there)

From Paul and Sallie:

We have loved “Atypical” – a 3-season Netflix series about a high-performing kid with autism.  Sensitive and very well done…

From Keith and Brenda:

We are watching and enjoying Mrs. Maisel on Netflix, about a Jewish housewife who becomes a stand up comic in the late 50’s and 60’s.

We really enjoyed Man in a High Castle on Netflix based on an alternative history where Japan and Germany win WWII.

Also watching Westworld on HBO, which is about AI becoming human.

Recently watched:

1917(amazing cinematography)

Midway(pretty good)

Knives Out (silly and fun.)

From Judy and Richard:

We are hungry for TV shows that are funny. We enjoy The Neighborhood on CBS at 7:00 on Mondays.  Also, CBS Sunday morning from 9:00 – 10:30 each week that is VERY uplifting and informative on a whole wide world of innovative people. Richard likes Bull but we haven’t watched it together yet so I just have to assume it’s got redeeming qualities.

Resources for Books and Reading

Erin Bush who is a librarian sent me the following:

To add to the library resources, some of you may not be aware that if you live in one of the area counties with a reciprocal agreement, you can get a card from _all_ of the jurisdictions. If I recall correctly, this area includes: Montgomery County, Prince George’s County, DC, Alexandria City, Arlington County, Falls Church City, Fairfax County, and Loudoun County. Most if not all are offering temporary online cards of various durations—DC’s is for 90

days and Loudoun County’s is for 6 months! The Mary Riley Styles Library in Falls Church will mail a physical card to your house.

The apps you want on your device are Libby, Hoopla Digital, and RBDigital for books/audiobooks, Kanopy for movies, and Mango Languages for language learning. Most library websites have pretty good video tutorials, but if you’d like a personal walkthrough from a librarian, feel free to email me and we’ll set up a time. You can reach Erin at

Want to find a way to stop supporting Amazon and help independent book sellers? This new platform allows you to order books online but the proceeds go to independent book sellers like Politics and Prose!

Resources for Learning and Trying New Things

So you have decided to grow your own food?

Amid the coronavirus pandemic, a vegetable garden may also provide one thing we seem to be lacking at the moment: control over our lives.

Elijah Wan’s podcasts on animals are both informative and entertaining from Crocodiles to Wolves you can learn a lot from Elijah!

Books that Fellow Seekers Recommend

Julie recommends:

Books (all memoir here):

H is for Hawk,

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (also a great movie),

A River Runs Through It,

The Winged Seed by Li-Young Lee (probably my favorite writer ever)

Also, the original book of The Phantom of the Opera is worth a read!

William’s books:

Native Speaker,

11/22/63 (also a tv miniseries),

nonfiction by Mark Salzman —

Iron & Silk;

Lost in Place;

Man in the Empty Boat

Here are some recommendations from Jeanne Marcus:

My reading strategy for these times involves seriously engaging longish books that immerse me in another world. These novels’ worlds, like ours, are experiencing historically challenging times, but they are not set in the U.S., and mostly not set in this time.  But, though their times are challenging, they are all animated by a spirit of deep humanity, a certain sweetness of soul, and a bit of magic realism.  And the nominees are—all of them great!:

Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon,  Barcelona, post WWII Franco-ruled Spain 1930s, 1950s

A Constellation of Vital Phenomena-  Anthony Marra –Chechnya between 1994-2004

The Thousand Autumns of Jacob De Zoet- David Mitchell –1799 in Japan

A Gentleman in Moscow-Amor Towles- Stalinist Russia

Stay safe, read well,


Joan Dodge says:

Just finished the Dutch House by Ann Patchett. novel about an estate house in Suburban Philadelphia over five decades.

Sandra says: So, both to sustain my righteous anger, and for the opportunity to laugh, I signed up for Alexandria Petri’s Washington Post blog. Here’s the link to today’s piece:

I am including the link to my blog again to this list of books that fellow Seekers recommend. If you are not following my blog, now is a good time to do so! (Shamelessly self promoting here! ????)

For the last four weeks I have been doing a series on “Books to Read During a Pandemic.” This week’s theme was about “confronting the elephant in the room” books.

I have removed the other book recommendation from Seekers since they have been in this email several times now, in order to keep this email shorter but if you want them you either have them in previous emails or you can contact me and I can resend them to you.

Resources On How To Still Be God’s Hands and Feet while practicing Social Distancing.

Many people still need masks! If you sew then here are some patterns and a you-tube video on how to make masks.

One of my friends makes these masks which I have found to be really nice! You Tube tutorial to make a face mask with a pocket for filter and a nose wire.

Finally, in other news

Every year, at this time, the tulips in the Netherlands bloom. This year is no exception but the many tourist who usually go to see them are not able to do so because of the Coronavirus lockdown. Keukenhoff Gardens, however, made a virtual tour so we can all enjoy them now!

Remember, life goes on and we are all in this together!


Resources During This Time of Social Distancing, April 15, 2020
Resources During This Time of Social Distancing, April 2, 2020