What’s Bringing You Joy In February?

Time for our monthly series where we share a little bit of what’s bringing us joy. Do you have something to add? Let us know. We’d love to hear from you!

RACHEL –

HANDED-DOWN SPORTSWEAR AND ICE-SKATING! As a native NYCer, I’m still amazed that ice-skating at the town pond has become part of my family’s life. To be honest, I had put off ice-skating because the process felt very daunting to me. What size skates to buy? Do I want to spend the money? How do I teach the kids? But with Covid, like many of us, we are looking for new and safe ways to have some fun and maybe see some people. So when a local mom said she had skates to give away, I quickly accepted. We headed out this past weekend, brought some folding chairs (per lots of suggestions) and my girls learned in about twenty minutes. They were so happy, we ran into some friends and all of us left with joy on our faces and fresh NH air in our bodies. Does it get better than that right now? Not sure it does.

Not the most attractive photo, but I really recommend this recipe

NEW-TO-ME RECIPES! I’ve been working hard on reducing my meat consumption but often don’t know what to make. A full plate of only pasta and veggies won’t fill my belly and I often leave the table craving some kind of protein. So I’ve been looking for recipes that satisfy both of these needs – meat-free and filling – and have been finding some. Like this dish down above – it’s the NY Times Butter Chickpea recipe, which I found via the Wednesday Chef. It was so easy to make and delicious! I added a side of broccoli to round-out the meal and left the table full and happy. Next up, I plan to try a pumpkin chili recipe from @ever.homemaker.

HANNAH –

VACCINES! My parents (both over seventy) got their first vaccine this month! We made a lot of sacrifices this year – including keeping our children out of school – so that we could be with them without masks or distancing. The joy my kids get from seeing their grandparents (not to mention my own joy) is totally worth it, but we have still been worried. We will all feel so much safer once they are fully vaccinated. My kids talk all the time about their plans for “after Covid” and that is beginning to feel like something I can dream about too.

CELERY! Okay, this is a small joy compared with vaccines, but here in the depths of February, we have new, green life in our house. I finally tried this Pinterest trick of re-growing my celery and, YES, it works. The funny thing is, I rarely get celery because of the packaging and never out of season, but I love it in soups and with hummus. So, when my husband showed up with a bunch of celery randomly (he does this when organic vegetables are on sale because he’s worried they will be thrown out), I thought, this is it! So easy… you just soak the end in water for a few days and then plant it. In theory, I should be able to do this instead of ever buying celery once I get a few plants going. Apparently, according to the great internet world, you can do this with lots of vegetables. Who knew?

Photo from GoodNewsNetwork: Everyone in England is Planting Wildflower Meadows After Prince Charles Replants 60 of Them to Honor Queen
By Andy Corbley – Feb 1, 2021

GOOD NEWS NETWORK! I have a hard time reading the news because it feels like any mention of the environment or the natural world is about devastation, destruction, extinction, etc. Not only does this put me in a bad place emotionally, but it also makes it feel like all news is bad news, which isn’t the case. Enter the Good News Network. Every day they send me articles about good things that are happening around the world. I check their news first to remind me that lots of people really do care about the Earth and our children. The above photo is from a recent GoodNewsNetwork post describing the Wildflower Meadow movement in England. People there are transforming thousands of acres of unused pastures, old parking lots, and even dumps back into the beautiful “woodmeadows” that originally covered England. Now, doesn’t that just make you feel better about humanity? 🙂

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