©2020 Janet Maher, Trusty Singer

By now we have settled into what my yoga teacher termed “a new neutral”, creating personalized rhythms to our days. I have shared particular things on other digital platforms, and feel drawn to continuing that here. As I haven’t taken up any kind of journaling throughout this time, perhaps this is a means for me to recall and mark some details in place for myself, hoping that others might also find them helpful.

The Guardian and Politico are my primary trusted daily news sources, combined with Heather Cox Richardson’s Letters From An American, which continues to be a steadfast anchor in parsing the ever-evolving events. (Thank you, Nicole, for turning me on to her!) I limit my reading these days to the morning and have stopped listening to NPR until dinner prep time, finding that I need otherwise to fill the days with all that can support my “new neutral” apart from fretting about what’s going on in the “outside world”.

There are certainly beautiful moments and soulful connections, and I am happy to find that my skills in sewing have been dusted off for a new purpose. I’m using up a large stash of fabric saved over many years, trying to make as many face masks in a day as possible to send out to my long list of loved ones and close friends. One has also already gone to our greatly valued postal worker who has been on the front line with very limited protection day in and day out. It was sobering to see her behind suspended clear plastic shower curtains last week, as she explained her happiness in finally having received plastic gloves that she had ordered online (HERSELF, for protection doing her government job).

Here are links I have found most helpful in relation to our current great need for making face masks. They, obviously, are not medical grade, but can at least keep us from breathing on others, remind us not to touch our faces, and for general protection when we must go out to essential places. Otherwise—stay home and enjoy cooking, cleaning, being creative, being supportive and building your own resilience!

First, a Kent, England’s, Family Heartwarming Collaboration to make you smile!

Next, an important explanation about how this virus spreads, by Jonathan Smith.

Six No-Sew Masks Links:

Three Sewing Masks Links:

Billette’s Baubles is the design I use, but no longer w/elastic. I don’t have flannel, but I do make the center piece, with another layer of fabric. There is a front, back and center piece.

I do the ties based on the video by Jenny Doan, Missouri Star Quilt Company, however, I sew them to the sides, not to the long ends. I also turn and close off the ends of the ties. It is necessary to cut long 2.5” strips and sew them together to get enough for two forty-inch ties for each mask. I’m finding bed sheet material to be useful for this.

Here are tips from Billette’s Baubles re washing your mask:

©2020 Janet Maher / Sinéad Ni Mheachair

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