Even though I could have sworn that March lasted about three months in one, just like that, April is flying by.

This week, we celebrated Earth day, but probably in different ways than we normally would. While some of you might be used to taking trips or hiking with family, maybe some of that family is a little out of reach right now and too far to celebrate with. I know some of those popular hiking spots are closed due to social distancing.

Of course, we can still appreciate the sunlight and the outdoors, but not quite share it with others. Some people have had to get a bit more creative.

Photo by Katie Smith on Unsplash

And for that, I’ve got another idea.

Have you heard of the trend, maybe even the hashtag, quarantine cooking?

Especially when it comes to making bread, people seem to have taken to the kitchen while sheltering in place and I think this is a great opportunity to appreciate how much of our food comes from the Earth.

Even more than that though, we can also use it to connect with one another in the process.

Having been in Slo for almost four years now, I’ve come to appreciate food a lot more than I used to. I know, it sounds weird to say, but hear me out. The heart of so much culture and life and friendship exist within food and I think you might agree with me on that.

Different cultures treat meals in different ways. Maybe everyone makes their own meals and eats them separately, that’s what you’re used to. Maybe some people gather what is needed for the meal while some people do the cooking and others people do the cleaning. Maybe it’s an all hands on-deck sort of thing. Maybe it’s a hodgepodge of all three…

Photo by Katie Smith on Unsplash

Now, keep in mind that none of these scenarios are specific to any cultures I know of because they can’t be broken down this simply. This WIB Wire article here has a more detailed look into what this might look like, but what I’m saying is that not only does culture represent food, it can also be shared through food. And food is something that we get from our Earth.

In a time when we can’t all be together sharing a meal face to face, maybe we can share a recipe or share a meal over video chat. 

I know, I sound like a “thrive” commercial, but this would do more than just pass the time and save some yeast so we’re not all trying to make bread.

I said this earlier, different cultures treat meals differently. Maybe you’re missing your best friends, aunts, uncles, parents, roommates, etc. and they feel like home to you. Maybe there’s this one thing they used to make, and you never learned how to make it.

Maybe you did.

Photo by emy on Unsplash

That becomes a part of your culture: how the dish is made, the smell of the house while you’re cooking it, the way your hands work. Even more than sharing the recipe with a friend—hoping they can get it right after a few tries, knowing it took you more than just a few—if you get the chance to share a part of your culture with someone you care enough to share it with, you can connect with them. The distance, social or not, doesn’t matter. The pandemic going on around us, at least for a little while, doesn’t matter.

Because I think sometimes we forget that there are moments and pieces of good that can break through the worry or the stress or the busyness. There are people going to work extra hours every day, seven days a week. There are families of eight in two-bedroom apartments, trying to make it through the days. But there are moments that can pull them through.

You just have to make them happen. Even if that means reaching out to your friends who you know might need them. Borrowing from the Earth that gives us so much food and culture just so we can share it with everyone else. 

So if you’ve got the time, the food, the energy, and the recipe, share that with someone you miss, someone you care about. Someone who needs it.

It’s just another way to connect in a time where people are feeling incredibly disconnected. And if you’re not up for a meal, just check in on your people. We’re still in this and we’re getting through it.

Photo by Pooja Chaudhary on Unsplash

So if you have any recipes you’d like to share in the comments below or you’d like to share with me by email, I am always open to try out something new. I can even tell you how it goes. My inbox is open for you.

Otherwise, it’s another week down and you made it to Friday. Treat yourself today. 

And I’ll see you next week.

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