I’ve been feeling really drained lately. Emotionally…stuck. The news just keeps getting worse – Tyre Nichols, mass shootings, the continued stories of torture and execution of protestors in Iran – many of whom are no older than my son – and I feel myself detaching, mentally distancing myself.
I’m struggling equally with feelings of overwhelm (we have our own stuff we’re going through right now) and helplessness. And while I can forgive myself the overwhelm – it’s a state we’re in, a phase that will hopefully lessen someday – it’s the helplessness I find especially frustrating.
Since I have literally nothing of value to contribute to this conversation right now, here are five IG accounts I think are worth following:
@elicialebon – she’s an Iranian human rights activist and criminal defense attorney living in…England? The US? Unclear. Anyway, if you’ve also been frustrated trying to understand what is actually happening in Iran – the under-reporting in our news outlets, the conflicting stories – she will often break it down, explain what is being missed, and often throws in a much-needed Middle East history lesson. She’s actively working to spread names of the protestors most at risk of execution, in the hopes that world-wide notoriety could stay the hand of the Iranian government.
@chelseahartisme – they are a comedian and activist and are…quite something to behold. They’re entertaining and funny, a little polarizing, but challenging and wicked smart. I’ll be thinking of points they’ve made for days. They’re another one who really digs deep into the Middle East, and their link in bio has all kinds of helpful stuff: a petition to expel IRGC diplomats, Iran letter templates, a link to Free Toomaj (an Iranian rapper being held by the Iranian Govt), links to help provide education for Afghans, etc.
@evolvedteacher – if you do ONE THING for Black History Month (a month I have conflicted feelings about because Black history IS American history and should be, ya know, 12 months a year)…go and follow Gahmya’s account. She’s an educator, and her manner is one of a fairy godmother come to life. She has a way of offering perspectives, alternatives, and breaking things down that is so supportive and warm. Some of her recent posts (as examples) are, “3 Simple Things To Do When Your Child Says, “Mom, Look! That Man Has Black Skin!” And “3 Lifestyle Shifts Parents Can Make to Raise Inclusive Children.”
@thehumanityarchive – Jermaine Fowler’s account is dedicated to teaching all about overlooked history (especially from the Black perspective), and the collection of 9 photos he pulled together to celebrate Black History Month are amazing. The one of Gloria Richardson causally pushing away a bayonet is it for me. ps. He has a book coming out at the end of Feb.
@clarabelletoks – Clare Brown is a comedian who has started a series of videos highlighting mircroaggressions. The twist? She flips all of the stereotypes. So in her video series, white people are the minority, boys stay at home while women work, Christmas is not the dominant holiday, etc. etc. Raines loves this account, too.
Now onto the usual distractions.
Forget UGGs. Anthropologie has 25% off shearling-lined Birkensocks right now (oh! so does Nordstrom – gray or tan)! If you prefer the fluffy stuff on the outside, my ‘teddy’ Birkenstocks are also 25% off.
Jeans & Jewels. Sak’s is having a huge designer sale, and for me, it’s all about the jeans & jewelry. I’m eyeing up these unique (patched?) Mother Ditchers (Ditchers are the most comfortable jeans I own right now), these patched denim shorts by Re/Done (oh hey Spring break?), and this pair of gorgeous, sculptural statement earrings by Black-owned Edas.
My necklace, tho. I always get questions about that chunky gold chain I wear, and it came from a local jeweler here in Vermont. That said, Saks does have a similar necklace on sale, or this chunky, messy, sparkly one.
If I worked in an office…I’d immediately pick up these jeans (more trouser than denim – additional sizes at Anthro), or these rag&bone chinos. I’d tuck in this silk blouse and layer some sort of crewneck sweater over top (letting the collar peek out).
Oh wow. GAP’s collab with The Brooklyn Circus made my heart beat fast. This might be the coolest hoodie ever. (And the sweatpants are good, too.)
Teen boys? Raines’ favorite pants are on sale. Just bought another pair since he tries to wear the one he has every. single. day.
Cuuuuute. This dress is great, but it was the plus-size model & styling that realllllly got me.
Which brings me to…the coolest Nike dunks. This color combo is unexpected and chic.
Okfine. Those Levi’s I’ve been eyeing up FOREVER are on sale for $39.
Scotti hates these??? Apparently Scotti is skipping the lug-sole boot trend because she hates them. Her video is hilarious.
Hiiiii. A sexy little date-night sweater for under $55. Perfect for Valentine’s Day.
Smitten mittens. My favorite Valentine’s Day gift EVER was this pair of ‘smitten mittens’ I gave to Raines when he was little. I mean ok – they’re technically for adults, but they worked great for his little self, too. He was totally charmed, and our hand-holding while crossing the street battle was officially o-v-e-r. There’s now a hand-knit set I’m tempted to gift Mike. 🙂
Cuddle up around the fire? We swear by these Stokes firestarters – they work great both indoors and out. (And Pax is always asking for these magic flames – this is prob our Valentine’s Day plan.)
Sweet & heartfelt. My kids are too old to make Valentine’s Day cards…but I was thinking it might be a nice thing to make some wishes (or prayers or whatever) for people using this flying wish paper. You write down your wish, roll it up, and then light it on fire. Once lit, your wishes ‘fly’.
Valentine’s Day Dinner? I’ve been dying to try a few of the recipes in the ‘Asian Roots’ section of Hetty McKinnon’s Family cookbook…and why not on Valentine’s Day? I could also gift the boys some cute new chopsticks. Pax would probably want the lightsaber ones, but they look really hard to use – these are probably my top pick. (Oh yay – Hetty has a newer cookbook, To Asia With Love: Everyday Asian Recipes & Stories From The Heart and…it’s now going to be my Valentine’s Day gift to myself.)
Vegan recipes I’m making this week. I love this rice-based take on salad – sometimes cold, leafy greens aren’t what I want in the dead of winter. She also has – gasp! – these peanut-butter stuffed cookies soooo…yeah. That’s now my weekend plan.
It’s cold here, baby. As I type this, it’s -15 degrees outside. Not with wind chill, that’s literally the temp. @alex_vt always has the best pics of Northern Vermont, and his reel beautifully illustrates how freaking cold it is.
I hope you get a little space to breathe this weekend, and maybe something warm to drink.
Mother Ditchers… yes! I bought the crops and then just bought the Ditcher Heels on final sale and am thrilled. It’s not always easy to find full length denim right now but they’re amazing. So glad you’re enjoying them too.
Excellent I loved the post. Thank you
Thank you, Shana, as always, for your honesty and beautiful writing. You expressed how I feel too. Thanks for the links to the IG accounts as well–I’ve passed them along to some friends. And I was thrilled to see the Brooklyn Circus and GAP collab! Yay! When you say something makes your heart beat fast, I’m always like, “THIS is gonna be hella good.” And it always is–and I ordered a couple sweatshirts and a T-shirt stat! Here’s hoping the links back to you worked). Sending you good vibes and thoughts.
Just to be clear – I live for the nuggets on Raines/Pax clothing items.
Ordered the pants immediately – my son is wearing them to school today.
Thank you. Sending positive energy your way for what your are going through.