Welcome. It’s a funny thing, what’s happening with us, with this growing community of ours at home and At Home. We’re anxious about the coming months, about what happens when schools start or don’t, when the sun stops coming up early and falling late, when the temperature drops and we can’t be outside so much, can’t eat on a sidewalk, can’t loll around in a park. Will we be back at work, will we be still working or looking for work at this tiny desk in the corner of the bedroom, in the attic, in the living room, in the garage? Will we still be alone, or alone together? Will we be safer, or less safe?

That worry’s a drumbeat. We attend to it closely. Above it, though, there’s a melody: a craving for distraction and joy, for intimacy, for serendipity.

Lately we’ve been finding that in the off-hours work of our colleagues, and in the notes that they’ve taken recently on life during the pandemic about what they’ve been reading and listening to and watching, about what they’ve been doing and how and why. We call these documents “Notes From Our Homes to Yours,” and they’re a remarkable collection of observations and recommendations about living a full and cultured life during the pandemic. I’d urge you to check them out today.

And when you’re done, please visit us At Home for more straightforward advice about how to deal with life right now, how to manage, how to feed, how to help. We are as always here to serve. Let us know what you want to know: athome@nytimes.com. See you on Friday.


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Credit…Alan Tansey
  • For people who are still working from home for the foreseeable future, it is time to stop making excuses and get things around the house in order. That can mean tidying your bedroom or upgrading your home office (or setting up a home office if you’ve been trying to survive without one). And if your home has amenities you aren’t able to use, it’s worth asking if you still have to pay for them.

  • Urban centers have proved resilient as centers of innovation, but a growing sense that density is a core issue in our new world could lead to a lack of luster for cities once thought of as superstars.

  • People often talk about how one day they’ll write a short story. Curtis Sittenfeld, the best-selling author of “Prep” and “Rodham,” thinks the time to start is now.


Credit…Pedro Guimarães
  • When asked for a selection for the “One Good Meal” series, the textile artist Vanessa Barragão picked arjamolho, a chilled tomato soup that is healthy, flavorful and, in her opinion, perfect for summer.

  • Marcella Hazan spent years teaching Americans the finer points of Italian home cooking. It is easy to picture her as a breakout star of quarantine cooking if she’d lived this long, and with these three tomato sauce recipes, she might still get there.

  • And Bill Buford spent more than a decade seeking the heart of French cuisine for his new book, “Dirt.” But in quarantine, he just wants to make the perfect chicken. Pete Wells dug in on Buford’s obsession, and the effect it has had on his family and friends. “When they grew up, the boys would almost certainly remember when they didn’t have to go to school for months and their father kept coming up with new ways to poach a chicken.”


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