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  • Writer's picturetaylor


I hope you're all staying well (and at home). If you're fortunate enough to work from home and continue to get a paycheck, consider yourself privileged. If you're home and out of work, I'm sorry, but it's important to realize that even in isolation, you're making a difference, potentially reducing hundreds to thousands of infections. You're also keeping yourself safe during these uncertain times.

Writing is a distraction for me, so I've decided to create a list of my isolation essentials to share the things getting me through this weird isolation period. Products, workouts, playlists, whatever helps me stay positive, stay healthy, and

...from Small Businesses


Combat Ready Balm from locally and women-owned luxury skincare brand, Skincando, has been a lifeline for my hands during this time. Repeated hand washing has left my hands dry, yet Combat Ready Balm brings them back to life. Every time.

Be sure to use the code "CRBALM10" to get an extra 10% off your order.

Melly Mani

I went into this social distancing with an SNS manicure but with non-essential businesses being shut down, I knew taking it off would be an at-home task. Cue Melly Mani. Melody is a manicurist in the Baltimore area, and she came up with the GENIUS idea of selling at-home manicure kits, including all necessary products for removing a gel or SNS manicure. For $20, I got the kit shown below. After 2.5h of soaking my nails in acetone, filing off layers of dip, and enacting a lot of patience, I removed my SNS manicure! After buffing, cutting, and shaping my nails, I painted them with the nail polish she included. Did I mention the kit was only $20 and she delivered it right to my door? Well, she left if at my door. No human contact because #socialdistancing.

...from fitness professionals

There are a ton of studios and fitness professionals offering creative solutions to get us moving in this seemingly static time. We might be in physical isolation, but that doesn't mean we have to be socially isolated!

Pilates House Baltimore

Pilates House Baltimore is offering a variety of classes to get you moving! From virtual private classes to Zoom group classes. Group classes are $12 for non-members. A steal! You can find all the details on their Virtual Pilates page.

Gal Pal Fitness

Alysha of @discovercharmcity and Alexa of @alexabedingfield have teamed up (again) to create a Gal Pal fitness workout via IG LIVE, Sundays at 10:30AM. All you need is some space to move and a positive attitude. I did the workout this past week, and the 30 minutes of movement were exactly what I needed to restore my mind, ease my anxiety, and see some familiar faces in the comfort of my own home!

...from Spotify

Sorry to all my Apple Music lovers, but I'm a Spotify lady. Music has always been an escape for me, so it's no wonder a good playlist is an isolation essentials.

My Top 3 Playlists:

...from Universities

To keep my mind sharp (and distracted), I enrolled in a free, online class through Coursera. If you're looking to use your time in a similar way, here are 450 free, online classes in everything from Computer Science, Data Science, Programming, Health & Medicine, Art & Design, Personal Development, and so much more!

...from the Grocery Store

To avoid leaving my home, I've been using Instacart to source my groceries during isolation. The concept is simple - within Instacart you can select to "shop" from multiple stores. I've been getting my groceries, mainly the essentials, from Aldi (which honestly feels like a cheaper Trader Joe's). I've run across some items I've been reordering not because I need them but because they bring comfort to me in this stressful time!

Aldi Affordable Favorites:


...from Amazon

Amazon, although not a small business, has been great for other essentials that we've needed throughout the past 18 days. I've tried to limit my ordering, buying things that will last me for awhile. This includes Lysol (for cleaning common surfaces) and the variety pack of Spindrift (because I don't drink soda.) Other linked items are previous purchases from Amazon that are coming in handy at home.

First, my multivitamin. I'm not a doctor, but taking a multivitamin is definitely a start to staying healthy by providing your body key vitamins and minerals it needs every day. Mental health is influenced by nutrition, and I take a multivitamin every morning to help keep my body fueled. I don't eat a lot when I'm at home, so I've also noticed taking a multivitamin every morning helps with my anxiety.

Yes, this list also includes THOSE comfy joggers and my favorite workout pants (a Beyond Yoga dupe.) And if you're looking to get lost in home inspiration, grab a copy of Hilton Carter's Wild at Home, complete with tips on keeping your plants alive during isolation.

In addition, I recently wrote a Medium piece with my current thoughts on social isolation.

If you're looking to keep up with my daily isolation journey in real-time, be sure to follow me on Instagram. I'm also sharing our kitchen creations on Pinterest!

Need more distraction? Check out these recent posts.

Stay safe, be well friends. We will get through this together.



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Vanessa Ulrich
Mar 31, 2020

A true survival kit! Thank you for sharing - I'm loving the Skincando balm too, and need to add those cinnamon rolls to my basket tomorrow... Stay well!


Colleen Shenk
Colleen Shenk
Mar 30, 2020

Staying home is definitely tough but I’ve been utilizing a lot of these tips as well! Stay safe Taylor!

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