Something Good

1. Wisdom from Elizabeth Mattis Namgyel: “Interdependence offers us a new way of looking at things by drawing us out of the narrow tunnel of self-absorption into a broader awareness. It shows us the way to live in sane relationship to our world, in grace. This understanding is not only inextricably linked with our survival but with basic sanity and insight as well.”

2. What’s your whimsy? on Rita’s Notebook. I’ve always thought of this as “finding your thing,” and my friend Mikalina and I were talking about this last week and I said, almost as much to myself as her, “what if that gentle flow we feel when we ‘play’ isn’t merely taking a break but actually the way IN?” It’s worth considering.

3. Wisdom from Anne Helen Petersen: “…you really just need to give yourself a fucking break. Whatever you’ve done this year in your personal or professional life, it’s enough. You are beloved and worthy of rest. Not because of your capacity to work, or your relative capacity to subsist on fumes. You are beloved and worthy of rest because you are human, not a robot. This year has emptied us. Give yourself permission to continue to seek fullness.”

4. Grief in the Covid era will weigh on the American psyche for years to come. I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately.

5. What Happened in Room 10? “The Life Care Center of Kirkland, Washington, was the first COVID hot spot in the U.S. Forty-six people associated with the nursing home died, exposing how ill-prepared we were for the pandemic — and how we take care of our elderly. This is their story.”

6. What Scandinavians Can Teach Us About Embracing Winter on The New York Times. I appreciated this article as it reinforced I’m getting at least one thing right this year.

7. End of year reflection questions from Courtney Carver on Be More With Less.

8. Ocean Vuong: On Hope, Fire Escapes, and Visible Desperation, On Being.

9. COVID-19 News: ‘Absolutely remarkable’: No one who got Moderna’s vaccine in trial developed severe COVID-19, and A doctor on 9 things that could go wrong with the new vaccines.

10. Nez Perce Tribe acquires historic Hayes Farm. In related news, Clatsop-Nehalem tribes plan after return of ancestral land. “We realized that though we have a conservation mission, our connection to this land is not, and could never be, as deep and important and meaningful as the connection of the Clatsop people,” Voelke said. “What we owned was one of the most important places to other people, and why would we own that when we know that those other people will care for it even more greatly than we would?” Also, Biden makes historic Cabinet pick with Deb Haaland for interior secretary, “The Congress member would become the first Native American Cabinet member if confirmed by the Senate.”

11. Jena Schwartz: Day 209.

12. The 15 best books our book critic read this year.

13. Home for Christmas Season 2 | Official Trailer | Netflix. (video) Every bit as good as Season One.

14. Public Work | #EFF2020: A Holiday Campaign (Uncensored). (video) “Everyone agrees: the year 2020 could not have been worse. So, we decided to give it the send-off it deserves.”

15. Designer Can’t Stop Rearranging Everyday Objects into Visually Satisfying Compositions.

16. Andy Goldsworthy’s Ice and Snow Ephemeral Sculptures.

17. Thank God For Dan Levy.

18. While Making the World a Better Place, Jacques Pépin Also Wants to Make Our Lives Easier.

19. Nikki Giovanni, Finding the Song in the Darkest Days on The New York Times. “Part of the Black Arts Movement in the 1960s, part of a Biden campaign ad in 2020, she has never stopped writing.”

20. Sevens by Deborah Thompson. Debby and I worked together at CSU. She’s a dog person and one of my favorite nonfiction writers.

21. Wild Writing Family [with Laurie Wagner] – Interview with Alison Luterman. (video)

22. 5 Survival Tips for When You Don’t Fit in With a Social Group.

23. On burnout: Buddhist teacher Mushim Patricia Ikeda shares her tips to avoid burnout, and How I Avoid Burnout: Buddhist Priest Daniel Soten Lynch, and How To Build a Burnout Recovery Plan.

24. Allie Brosh on Her New Book and the Trouble With Solutions, “an interview with the fierce and funny author and artist, Allie Brosh, plus advice on recognizing if someone you love is struggling with depression even if they’re not physically near you, and dogs, lots of dogs.”

I'd love to hear what you think, kind and gentle reader.

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