Resources During This Time of Social Distancing, May 15, 2020

Dear Seekers and Friends,

As we complete week eight of our social distancing we are beginning to see some outline of our future under the threat of this virus. It is much longer than we imagined and we still are struggling to balance the need to stop the virus and to begin our economy again. In the coming weeks we will begin to see the consequences of the choices we are making today.

But this is also a time of opportunity. We now have time, a pause in the lives we were leading up until this virus came, to rethink, to reimagine and to rebuild the world in a way that is better for the earth and for all people. I encourage you to send me your thoughts, books and links about how to reimagine our world. Let’s start a conversation about what our world could look like!

We also have to live in this moment. What is sustaining you, what food brings you comfort, what tips do you have that will help us live well  during this time? I invite you to share your recipes, the movies and books you love, the gardening tips to make your roses and African violets thrive and the ideas that have worked to jump start your efforts to tackle those chores we all hate to do.

And, let’s not forget to laugh!

I hope you enjoy this edition of the Resources Email.

Remember we are all in this together!


Resources for Keeping Informed About the Coronavirus  

Even after we find a vaccine that works it may take quite a while for manufacturers ramp up enough to vaccinate everyone around the world. With contributions from William Wan, this article tells us what lies ahead.

We are learning more and more about this virus and the way it attacks the body. Here is a great summary of all we know right now.

A very enlightening article about how this virus spreads and what to be aware of as we open back up to protect yourself.

A refreshing and bracingly honest assessment of what our new normal is going to look like from the Republican Governor Larry Hogan.

A deep dive into why it is highly unlikely that this virus escaped from a Wuhan lab, based on the science.

Resources for Getting Benefits or State or Governmental Assistance Due to Covid-19

Reposting because these are still important resources.

The first coronavirus relief stimulus payments have been issued. Here’s what you need to know about how much you and your family could receive.

If you are self employed or normally would not be eligible for Unemployment Insurance you will now be eligible under the Cares Act in Maryland (check DC and VA for their requirements by Googling Cares Act DC or Va.) This link will tell you how and where to file. Filing in MD begins today, April 24.

MD, DC and VA have suspended the processing of evictions and foreclosures during this pandemic. They will however resume once this emergency is over. In the meantime contact your mortgage holder or your landlord and try to come terms with them for the duration of the pandemic.

Everything you need to know about paying your rent or mortgage during the pandemic.

Resources for Participation in the Upcoming Election

The Maryland Primary is June 2. You should be getting your mail-in ballot by TODAY. If you have not received it yet please open this link and call the numbers given.

If you have not yet signed up to get a mail-in ballot for the upcoming   election Please, Please do so NOW!

Trish found this great website that has clear usable information for each state about voting deadlines, registration deadlines and includes information on how to ask for an absentee ballot, etc.  There are relevant deadlines in May for each DMV jurisdiction so this is a good time to get this out. The organization is called Election Protection:866ourvote

This is from the League of Women Voters:

Check your voter registration at or text Check to 777-88 and update your address or party affiliation if necessary by May 27.  Vote your ballot, sign the oath, and return your voted ballot by mail. You will not need a stamp- the envelope will have postage on it. Your ballot must be postmarked by June 2. You may also drop your ballot at any one of four Vote Centers or at a drop box at the Board of Elections or Rockville City Hall between May 21 and June 2 at 8 p.m. Go to the Montgomery County Board of Elections website for more details. The highly respected non-partisan Voters’ Guide from the League of Women Voters will be coming soon in both an English and a Spanish version. Check our website for updates or go to now.

Resources for Re-imagining Our World After the Pandemic

The Moment To Change the World is Now is the title of this Time Magazine article. I think they may be on to something!

Germany’s Angela Markell is prioritizing green initiatives as part of the planning for Germany’s recovery from COVID-19.

What if in this new world we are reimagining our work week was only 32 hours?

The May 14 Inward/Outward was entitled Guidelines for the Honorable Harvest by Robin Wall Kimmerer which I think has some wise words about how we treat Mother Earth in all her varied aspects.

This is from Trish:

This is the first part of a data-driven Reuters Special Report on how the Supreme Court has helped tip the balance in favor of cops in excessive force cases involving claims of police brutality. The story is published amid increasing calls for the Supreme Court to reconsider its approach.

Reposting these from last week just in case you missed them!

This is from Jackie McMakin who encouraged me to create this topic for the Resources email. From Emergency to Emergence seems like something we all need to think about!

This is another one from Jackie: What are business leaders considering as they think about re-opening and the affects of the continuing pandemic might have on their company and the people who work there? Here are four scenarios they are considering. The good news is that 80% of 450 business leaders felt that the pandemic was an opportunity to create a more just world!

A few weeks ago Laura Kelly Fanucci  posted a poem she had written on FB. Since then it has been published in print, quoted on NPR and widely shared on social media.  It is a great meditation on what we have lost and what we might gain from this pandemic. It is also a good way to start a conversation with each other on re-imagining our world after this pandemic. Thanks to Larry for bringing this poem to my attention!

A young poet from England whose parents and sister are healthcare professionals wrote a powerful re-imagining of life after this pandemic. Set far in the future, it is told like a good night story to a young child! Very powerful!

Resources from Earth and Spirit Mission Group.

I Saw a Bird: Audubon’s Spring Migration Show

Tune in Every Wednesday at 7pm Eastern

Absolutely Magical! Wonderfully beautiful and creative film entitled : Story of Flowers

Resources for Gardening and Growing Vegetables

Adrian Higgins is the Gardening columnist for the WAPO. Here is his latest column on how to save seeds for the future!

Another article from Higgins: During this interlude, we should consider strengthening our relationship with the plant world and all its treasures. It is a bond that promises to bring us back to ourselves.

Resources from Carroll Café

Since the pandemic began Carroll Cafe has had to cancel all 4 concerts on the calendar for the 2019/20 season. As you can imagine this is a very complicated time for all the artists/musicians, whose income is directly tied to being able to interact with the public. We’ve all read about larger venues making art shows and concerts available live streaming, but Carroll Cafe does not have the ability to do that.

So we would like to put forward an opportunity for you to explore the concerts that didn’t happen by giving you the links to the artist’s websites where you can hear and buy their music.

March 13, 2020 IN PROCESS…

April 10,2020 PIERCE PETTIS

May 8, 2020 IONA

June 12, 2020 Scott Ainslee

Resources For Sustaining Your Spiritual Life 

(Sponsored by Living Water Mission Group)

Here is a reflection from Jean Adams:

“A Change of View”

Well, hello!  it’s a lovely sunny day.  I am looking over the vast parking lots of the group of stores.   Since it’s Sunday and the virus is big-time for all of us there are very few cars.  I like to shift my gaze to the right where the parking lot behind the smaller shops on Carlin Spring Road is located.  There is a lovely wrap-around of trees and bushes to that lot.  Then beyond it I see all the trees on the other side of King Street, so far that the distant ones appear partly blue.  I discovered this view recently when I decided to make the desk in my bedroom THE place I wanted to locate my computer and raised the venetian blinds for the first time!

And this is from Cynthia Dahlin:

This poem was sent around by many groups at the beginning of our pandemic, but when my daughter Julia sent it, mentioning how much it meant to her and the many young teachers trying to deal with the inadequacy of distance teaching with pupils challenged by lack of internet, lack of computers in the home, too many babysitting and home making chores for siblings while guardians tried to find work, it made me feel optimistic.  The next generation may not be scarred by this health crisis and the economic struggles  they are facing if they are finding meaning in the unexpected and forced slowing down of very stressed lives.

Resources for Food Assistance 

Reposting since these are all good resources.

Resources for Cooking

I don’t know about you, but I am cooking more than ever! Running out of ideas? I sure am! Here are the top 5 cooking shows on You Tube. Short and informative these shows offer you some new ideas for cooking during the quarantine.

I find I am looking online for recipes more than ever before. Well Google has been tracking what we have been searching and has just released the top recipe search for each state. You can find it all here!

Resources for Organizing and Decluttering

Having trouble how to get started in your de-cluttering? Here are some helpful tips that only take five minutes to help jump start your de-cluttering plans. I finally tackled my medicine cabinet, and it felt sooo good!

Resources for Mental Health, Wellness and Emotional Well Being.

We need to remember that we may face a national mental health crises in the coming months as the toll of social distancing and the anxiety we are all feeling begins to spill over. Here is what we can do to prepare and take care of ourselves.

I am reposting this information, since I think there are some great resources here:

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 Monday through 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:

Resources to Help You Laugh and Be Entertained 

In this age of social distancing and telecommuting, we have been given glimpses into the lives of the news anchors and reporters who we follow like never before. Judy Woodruff introduces us to the pets of the reporter’s on the NEWS HOUR who have become stars in their own right!

I think this link, Eyes on Sligo Creek, might have to become a regular feature in the Resources email. This couple is so passionate and excited about the wildlife they see along Sligo Creek.  The baby goslings have hatched now, and a green heron was spotted and you’ll have read more here to find out what else happened on this rainy day.

TV and Movies

This is from Martha Philips:

Over the last couple of days I have watched Ken Burns series on “The Dust Bowl” that has got to one of the most horrifying periods of history in the US. Not only did crops fail but many people died of dust fever. Then when they finally had some rain and a good crop  the grasshoppers came. For 9 years these people lived with failure after failure. Roosevelt’s WPA  and CCC  programs were the only thing that keep some of these people going.  Also because of this the government had the Department of Agriculture develop new methods of farming. This was also when Social Security started. Without these public government funded programs a large part of the population would have perished. There are times when the government must step in to save the country. This is not Socialism this is survival. If you want to understand our country today this is a good plan e to start. It is on Amazon Prime Video.

The new spring shows are about to begin. Here is what to watch according to AARP:

TV and Movies Recommended by Seekers

Keith and I just finished watching Unorthodox on Netflix about a young woman who leaves her extremely conservative Orthodox Jewish community in Williamsburg NY. We watched one episode and then another and another and just couldn’t stop! Highly recommend!

Resources for Books and Reading

The Gaithersburg Book Festival begins as a virtual event May 16 and will go until June 4. Check out all the great events and opportunities right here!

Books that Fellow Seekers Recommend

I have been going back to some of my favorite authors as I am reluctant to risk reading new authors right now. The more chaos I have to negotiate in real life the less I want it in my reading life!

So here is a list of some of my favorites and maybe this will remind you of some of your favorites as well.

Elizabeth George

Michael Connelly

Sharon Kay Penman

Tea Obreht

Joanna Trollope

Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Resources for Learning and Trying New Things

Here is a great list of things to do during this time! From working on your relationships to learning new skills, this will motivate you to begin something new.

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

Resources from Seekers

If you or someone within the Seekers community is running out of TP let David Lloyd know. We had some extra at church and we are willing to share with anyone in the community who needs it!

Our own Margreta is making and selling masks on her Etsy site. Here is the link if you need a mask!

Please contact David if you need a mask and don’t have the resources to buy or make them yourself. Margreta made a few extra to share with Seekers who need them!

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

As we begin to receive our government checks some of us are looking for suggestions on organizations in addition to Seekers with whom to share some of this money. If you have ideas for organizations to support please let me know.

One of my spiritual practices during this time of Covid is to incorporate more music into my life. I found this recording/video of Black Water by The Doobie Brothers (one of my favorite bands!) which I really enjoyed. But at the end they encourage people to go to the Feeding America website and find out what you can do to stop hunger! Seems like a win win all around! Great music, feed people!

A friend of mine told me about McKinley Mutual Aid who is working with the Navajos and Zuni people whose supplies have been cut off by the Gallup lockdown. Indigenous people here in the US have been disproportionately harder hit by this pandemic. Right now the governor of New Mexico has placed the town of a Gallup in a strict lockdown because over 60% of the town’s 2,200 residents are positive for Covid-19.

Direct Support for Immigrants is an organization that some individuals in Seekers have worked with by meeting immigrants at bus stations and offering support. Now those same thing immigrants are struggling in the pandemic.

This is from Julie:

I wanted to mention an organization under the possible donations / support category. My good friends Cary Umhau and Scott Borger have a nonprofit called Breadcoin, which serves as a way to feed the hungry. Right now they’re really in need of monthly supporters to help them get food to those who need it most.

Originally, Breadcoins were physical tokens that you could purchase and pass out on the street to those who needed them. The recipients could then redeem those coins for food at vendors around DC who had chosen to partner with Breadcoin (these include Ben’s Chili Bowl). Our family has had a lot of meaningful interactions passing out these tokens in the past, but of course right now this kind of contact is not possible. Breadcoin is finding that monthly supporters is the most effective way to reach those in need. More info is here:

Finally, in other news

We need some good news, don’t we? Well, this is really good news for young girls in the Sudan. In April they banned the practice of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and imposed criminal sanctions against those who continue the practice. This is a big step forward but the practice is still quite common especially in Egypt. There is still more work to do.

An author wondered if what William Golding described in the Lord of the Flies would actually happen in real life. Then he ran across the story of 6 boys stranded on an island for more than a year. This is what he found out.

Remember we are all in this together!


Resources During This Time of Social Distancing, May 22, 2020
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