Good News Monday #43: Love Fridge, Dolly Parton, and Loneliness Lessens

photo of pumpkins Photo by Pixabay on

I feel powerful and weak at the same time this week.

Powerful because I am painting walls, climbing ladders, and traversing the scaffolds.

Weak because my ankle seems sprained for no reason, so I can only walk on the ball of my foot, which led to my knee hurting, which caused a glitch in my hip.

I admit, I’m feeling melancholy about Thanksgiving. More because the holidays in general will be different. This is the story I tell myself: Every year someone must stay home due to illness, weather, or work. This year, it’s just happening to all of us at the same time. It’s my attempt at walking on the sunny side of the street.

Enough about me. Here’s some Good News I found this week.

Love Fridge to the rescue

Find out more from WTTW by clicking here.

All it takes is a few people to make a difference. Fifteen people came together in Chicago to address the growing food insecurity issue. You’ve seen the lines of cars waiting in food pantry lines.

For the  Love Fridge, the concept is simple: take what you need, leave what you can.

The goal is to promote healthy eating and wellness, so many fridges are stocked with local vegetables and fruit in addition to prepared meals. 

Artists volunteer to decorate the donated refrigerators. Allie Mae Miller is one of the artists that donated a refrigerator, decorated it and helps keep it clean and stocked. Allie Mae even named her refrigerator Toda Amor. She says:

“It was really good for my mental health because when I paint, it’s the only time I can turn my brain off and not think about what’s going on in my life. A lot of reflection happened in this piece.”

–Ellie Mae Miller

Right now there are 18 refrigerators in various Chicago neighborhoods. They all have catchy names like The Love Shack, Dirt Farm, The Kindness Korner, etc. Check out the locations by following this link:

Google map to Love Fridges in Chicago

Loneliness lessons?

According to Kasley Killam in Scientific American, Americans already had a loneliness She worried that this would worsen due to necessary isolation during a pandemic. Apparently, not so, according to a study conducted in the U.S., the U.K., and 26 other countries. Despite social distancing, people’s feelings of loneliness slightly improved.

Loneliness and aloneness are not the same thing. Because of forced isolation we are reaching out to people more. This leads to a sense of connectedness which means we feel less lonely.

You can read the whole article here.

Maybe with all of us isolated, we have become more aware of those who may be suffering from loneliness. At any rate, we are better now at reaching out to others, even if it can’t be in-person.

aged female with laptop and smartphone on bed
Photo by Anna Shvets on

OMGoodness, Dolly really is a sweetheart.

In 2016, her Dollywood Foundation donated $1,000 per month to families impacted by wildfires in Tennessee, and those payments continued for six months. In 1995, she founded Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, a literacy program that’s donated more than 100 million children’s books. And earlier this year, she was behind another generous act — donating $1 million to battle coronavirus. Her donation helped lead to Moderna’s success.

I’m just happy that anything I do can help somebody else, and when I donated the money to the Covid fund, I just wanted it to do good. Evidently, it is. Let’s just hope we find a cure real soon.”

From the Today Show

I’m not much of a country music fan. But I sure do love Dolly Parton. Okay, maybe I am a fan now. This video made me cry:

Remember as you plan Thanksgiving, there’s a tool to help you figure out whether travel is worth it.

The COVID-19 Event Risk Assessment Planning Tool is a collaborative project led by Prof. Joshua Weitz and Prof. Clio Andris at the Georgia Institute of Technology, along with researchers at the Applied Bioinformatics Laboratory and Stanford University, and powered by RStudio. Description of the method and analyses available at Nature Human Behaviour.

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you. There really is so much to be Thankful for.

So remember, don’t despair. Good things are happening.

In the meantime, practice the four Ws:

  • Wear a mask;
  • Watch your distance,
  • Wash your hands, and Work together.

What’s on your good news radar this week? I’d love to hear. More is always better.