The Weekly Edit: Gallery View

Apr 24, 2020

Tomorrow, we will begin week eight of quarantine/self-isolation.  Days drag on, but weeks seem to fly by.  I feel like I went to sleep on Leap Day and woke up in May.  So headlines like this one feel jarring.

As for my mental health, I’m adjusting.  It’s incredible that even something as abnormal as a global pandemic can start to seem normal after a while.  Watching movies with characters freely congregating in large groups, I feel like I’m watching someone use a rotary telephone.  I have a vague recollection that happened in the past, but watching it feels like an out of body experience.

I stopped watching the news.  Following the day’s headlines in print is better for my sanity.  On Tuesday, I turned on CNN out of habit and fell headlong into the President’s daily briefing.  Within five minutes, I was shouting things like “ask the follow-up” and “that’s not how vaccines work.”  So I shut it off and went for a walk.

Beyond that, we’ve reached the point where I officially miss seeing people.  It took a couple of months, but what I wouldn’t give for a crowded table in a loud restaurant.  Like the meme says, “When this is over, please invite me to everything.  I promise that I’ll actually come this time.”

Even though I feel calmer and more stable, we’re still just getting by.  My daily goal is always the same: lay your head on the pillow feeling like something worthwhile was accomplished.  Even if there are days when the accomplishment is just making it from sun up to sundown in one piece.

Stay strong out there.  Whatever your daily challenges — isolating solo, raising a toddler in a small apartment, searching for work with millions of others — know that you’re not alone.

I’m still on Instagram if you need to chat.  I had a wonderful conversation with someone last week about how to start developing her personal style, and commiserated with another about the toxic ex who thought that a global pandemic was the perfect occasion to send unsolicited dick pics.  So you just never know what the DMs will bring.

A few weeks ago, I talked about several documentaries about music that I binged one weekend.  This week, my television tastes ran to stories of looted Jewish art.

I rewatched Woman in Gold with Helen Mirren, about the repatriation of the Klimt portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer.  That prompted Amazon to suggest a documentary called Portrait of Wally, about an Egon Schieler painting looted by the Nazis from a Vienna art gallery.  It’s a fascinating story, but like many tales of looted art, the ending feels unsatisfying.

I also tracked down this New York Times article about a German museum who hired an expert to establish the provenances of disputed pieces, but then had no interest in returning pieces found to be looted.  Sadly, a conference that was supposed to begin resolving some of the legal bureaucracy surrounding restitution claims is postponed due to Covid-19.

I decided that now would be a good time to try out new makeup products.  After all, if they don’t look good, who will know?

I used Laura Mericer’s Tinted Moisturizer years ago, but stopped in favor of something heavier.  As my skin has cleared up a bit, I decided to give it another try.

I used Sephora’s shade finder to pick the right color, and purchased a mini-size.  I think I need to switch to the oil-free version on my combination skin, but I’m happy with the lighter coverage.  The look is by no means flawless, but it’s natural and feels lighter on my skin.  I recommend applying tinted moisturizer with a Beauty Blender and not a brush, however.  You really need to press it into the skin to the right finish.

I think I’m going to make a Pavlova this weekend.  This chocolate raspberry one from Nigella Lawson is calling my name, but Kyle doesn’t eat chocolate.  (I know, he’s a heretic.  My Father can’t believe we let him and his Sour Skittles into the family.)  So I’m probably safer with a classic strawberry one.

If you’re not familiar with Pavlovas or you need tips on how to make one yourself, I recommend The Home Cook’s Kitchen’s tutorial.  If you’re a visual learner, Joy of Baking has a recipe.

Buy a fixer upper, they said.  It’ll be fun, they said.  The 4×12 section of exposed sub flooring in my kitchen and the crooked tiles in my bathroom beg to differ.

To give myself a break from the endless list of frustrating construction projects, I decided to start decorating our bedroom.  I found an inspiration image that I plan to plagiarize.  And this striped duvet set from Stone & Beam is going to help my vision (or someone else’s vision as it were) really come together.  I’m also going to snap up the rug while it’s still discounted.

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  1. Claire says:

    The link to chocolate raspberry is not correct. Please fix it so I can make this asap! Thank you

  2. Joanie says:

    A few weeks ago I finished the book the The Hare with Amber Eyes: A Hidden Inheritance by Edmund de Waal that tracks a collection of netsuke through his family beginning around the time of the impressionists in Paris through World War II through present day. It’s incredible and detailed. The author is an artist and made me view the objects in a new way. Despite the subject matter, I found it incredible soothing to read. (and that’s saying something, even my beloved romance novels can’t keep my interest right now.) Thanks for the thoughtful posts as always.

  3. Maddy says:

    Abra, I found out yesterday that Christina Tosi (the founder of Milk Bar) is hosting a daily quarantine “baking club” on her Instagram. She posts the ingredients the day before, and then does a live video at 2p to walk everyone through the baking process. It looks like they’ve done everything from cakes to cereal bars and even basics like making your own sprinkles or graham crackers. Thought you might be interested since I know you love to bake.

  4. MOnica T says:

    OooooooOOOooooh….PAVLOVA! You have spoken of them before but I just happen to have egg whites in the fridge – leftover from a batch of creme brulee I made last weekend – that are looking for a purpose! Just whipped up the vanilla version and put it in the oven because it’s hot and I have strawberries and cream and I’m living my best quarantine life over here. I’d love to try a chocolate version too, I saw this one over at NYT Cooking that looked amazing! You use the egg yolks in the mousse though and I had already used mine…so maybe next week!

    https://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1018020-chocolate-pavlova-with-chocolate-mousse

  5. Hannah says:

    Thanks for the Woman in Gold recommendation. I watched it last night and it was great!

    • Linda Parisi says:

      It was a great book as well and goes into a bit more detail. If you ever get the chance, Vienna is a gorgeous city. Spent Christmas/New Year 2018 there. Absolutely magical.

  6. Whitney says:

    I know the weekend is pretty much over, but this was the first Pavlova I’d ever made from years ago (2009!) and it’s still my very favorite.
    https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/pavlova-with-lemon-curd-and-berries-352320

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