my week in objects (mostly).

    April 3, 2020

    1. these busy hands.

    rug hooking | reading my tea leaves

    {and projects of all kinds (this one thanks to rose).}

    2. this little seed marker.

    pea | reading my tea leaves

    {to mark a single pea.}

    3. these gallery wall additions.

    gallery wall | reading my tea leaves

    {and embracing artwork, everywhere.}

    4. these washed winter hats.

    woollens | reading my tea leaves

    {nearly ready to be stored.}

    5. this day’s schoolwork.

    {because a watercolored schedule turned things right around.}

    other things:

    remember, nothing is permanent.

    why it’s worthy to just be.

    i am working remotely and sharing childcare responsibilities with my spouse for the foreseeable future.

    they said i could touch her, and i caressed her dark hair with my gloved hands.

    mugs for vecinos.

    hello in there.

    cheat sheet.

    a rainbow connection among other things.

    temp check.

    March 30, 2020

    granola | reading my tea leaves

    I’ve been sending temp checks to my family and friends all week, wanting to know how everyone’s faring in terms of the virus itself, but also more generally. What’s the mood? What are the worries? What’s helped? What’s hurt?

    Me? A normal temp and a cough for the past week that’s been troubling but thankfully not worsening. We’re staying in and staying vigilant.

    Outside the loudest sound is the chatter of birdsong (until it’s pierced by the wail of an ambulance siren). Inside it’s the thud of small feet that can’t always stay still (but they’re trying their very best for goodness sake).

    This morning, my brother-in-law watched as the hospital ship sailed into New York Harbor and we received news from the first people we’re close to who have tested positive for Covid-19. We know there will be more.

    What’s helping?

    + Candlelight.
    + Building forts.
    + Rolling balls of colorful play dough between my palms.
    + Patting Calder’s back as she lies on my belly.
    + Simple evening sewing projects that require two hands and two eyes and no Twitter feed.
    + Plugging ideas for posts into my editorial calendar. (Deleting them. Adding them again.)
    + Scribbling on paper.
    + Tidying toys.
    + Brushing my teeth.

    What about you? How are you all feeling? What can I do to help in this space? Are there stories you’re craving these days? Are you after escapism, or are you looking for ways to navigate the current crisis? Do you need a project to work on?

    We can’t expect folks to have a universal experience of this pandemic and we can’t expect a universal path to comfort, but if there’s something that you think you’d like to see in this space, let me know.

    Finally, a brief note on funding:

    As most of you likely know, the funding for this site comes largely through partnerships with brands. In some cases I work on dedicated sponsored campaigns, in other cases I use affiliate marketing to earn small commissions from goods or services purchased through links in editorial stories, and in past years I’ve been able to sell banner advertising space to small businesses. I’m so proud of this site and so thankful for the support I’ve received, but like so much right now, a lot of that support is currently on pause or cancelled altogether.

    In the past week a few readers have reached out to ask if there are ways they can pitch in to help keep this blog thriving. I’m so thankful. One of the very best ways to help is to simply spread the word. If you have friends or family who might like to join the conversation, send them a link. If you have the extra money to spare, you can purchase a copy of my book, Simple Matters from your local indie bookstore (or ask your local library to buy a copy or three). If you sign up for my Skillshare class using the link https://skl.sh/erin, I will earn a small commission. And if you send that link to three friends who you think might love the class (and who would also enjoy two free months of Skillshare classes), even better. Finally, if leaving a small tip feels like something you’d like to do, you can drop spare change through Venmo or Paypal. Thanks so much for still being here.

    For the curious:

    The granola I made this week.

    My favorite breakfast bowl.

    Thoughts on oat milk.

    This post includes affiliate links. Reading My Tea Leaves might earn a small commission on the goods purchased through those links.

    my week in objects (mostly).

    March 27, 2020

    1. these soft, calming colors.

    {because we need all the calm we can get.}

    2. this crispy focaccia.

    {because we’re desperate for comfort food.}

    3. this birdseed.

    {and the new feathered friends we’ve made all these flights up.}

    4. these silks and clips.

    {for keeping us entertained.}

    5. these wheels.

    {for being able to move around the apartment.}

    other things:

    romanticizing other peoples’ quarantines is just the latest update of an ancient habit.

    pandemic america.

    please wash hands.

    there was every possibility of taking a walk that day…

    tiny toddler jeans from upcycled denim.

    how to stay married.

    skip the soak.

    in case you missed it: my new online class with skillshare: https://skl.sh/erin .

  • make your own: face mask.

    a fabric face mask by holler & squall A blogger offering a make-your-own-face-mask tutorial during a pandemic sounds like some kind of morbid April Fool’s joke. Imagine: One of the wealthiest countries in the…

    March 25, 2020 17 Comments
  • life in a tiny apartment.

    Tip #192: Make peace at home. I’ve spent lots of the last nine years writing about living in a small New York City apartment. I’m no stranger to cramped quarters or working from home,…

    March 24, 2020 32 Comments
  • stories and art in uncertain times.

    Today is the first official day of distance learning for New York City Public Schools and for schools across the country. James and I have sketched out a schedule as instructed by Faye’s kindergarten…

    March 23, 2020 11 Comments
  • my week in objects (mostly).

    as so many small businesses face uncertainty about the future, i decided to fill my list this week with objects that made my week, which i’ve also happened to buy locally from favorite shops.…

    March 20, 2020 6 Comments
  • everyday minimalism, an online class.

    On this eerily quiet New York City afternoon, I’m launching my first-ever class with Skillshare, an online learning community with thousands of inspiring classes on topics including illustration, design, photography, video, freelancing, and now,…

    March 17, 2020 13 Comments
  • habit shift: social distancing.

    Calder is officially one month old. She’s smack in the middle of the sleepy newborn stage, all snorts and stretches and very tiny yawns. She snoozes on our bellies in the daytime like a…

    March 16, 2020 30 Comments