As a blogger I often struggle with how to handle major issues and tragedies, while still keeping the content light and food focused. Friday’s attacks happened in my very own state and people I know were deeply affected. How could I spend hours reading news reports, yet log onto That’s SO Jenn to post a recipe about making cornbread? It just didn’t seem right.
During occurances like these, there are often feelings of survivor’s guilt when we realize that we were not hit personally, but it resonates so close to home that we could have been. I think it’s important to remember that no one is ever spared, and each of us have dealt with, are dealing with, or will face trying times. That is precisely why it’s vital to reach out when we can, but also embrace what we have when we have it.
We can keep others in our prayers, while still balancing our daily routines and focusing on the positive aspects of our own lives. While it certainly won’t change the heartbreaking events that occurred, fostering the relationships we share and spreading love is a positive way to go forwards day after day.
And so this weekend, I did just that. Hubby and I traveled with friends (and Mo!) into the city to celebrate two different birthdays and the holiday season. We all participated in Santacon, an annual charity event raising money for Toys for Tots. The cause was incredibly fitting.
After a phenomenal dinner at Pio Pio Friday evening and a night out with some of our favorite people, we awoke Saturday morning and got into gear. The premise of the day is to dress in costume and follow a route leading to various bars throughout NY.
The scene was incredible. Streets were lined with friendly faces decked as Santa and Mrs. Claus, gingerbread men, elves, candy canes and decorated trees. There were even fellow Jewish folks dressed in faux rabbi attire, menorah hats and a participant in a full chicken suit equipped with a yarmulke and tallis representing the last night of Chanukah.
As we walked to and from each location, strangers who would typically never have met walked up to one another to talk and laugh and spread seasonal cheer. It was almost as if we were proving there was kindness in society, and that people of all cultures, religions, ages and interests can get along.
Yesterday, we ended our weekend at a surprise party with another group of friends, again brought together by food and laughter. It felt great to embrace the people who mean so much to us, and live in the moment.
I hope each of you have the opportunity to find your piece of joy. May we all realize that not everyone is bad, not everything is negative and that we can be part of the greater good in this world. If you look hard enough, there is always a way to find hope and positivity. Even in the darkest of days, let’s make it a priority to turn on a light.