Issue #65: Everything But the Turkey Dinner
Plus a crowd-pleasing recipe for the morning after.
Morning Person is a weekly newsletter packed with obsessively-curated recommendations and ideas—let’s get to it!
📚 Flight by Lynne Steger Strong: On holidays, but also most evenings, I love to walk around my neighborhood and imagine the lives of the people whose homes are glowing yellow from inside. It’s a curiosity that’s sated in Strong’s novel, which comes out today, and takes place in the days leading up to Christmas. The beloved family matriarch Helen has recently died, and her children Martin, Kate, and Henry have gathered at a house with their partners and children in Virginia. What may look from the outside like a perfect family gathering, complete with children playing outside and a father building an igloo, is rendered far more complex by the internal lives, complicated family dynamics, and questions around climate change, the choice to have children, and money. A perfect example of Strong’s ability to imbue mundane moments with meaning arrives near the end, when Kate tells her sister-in-law about a Starbucks drive-through being closed. ‘The Family Stone’ meets Rumaan Alam’s Leave the World Behind, this novel is the perfect thing to read while spending the holidays with your own dysfunctional (yet lovable) family.
🎧 “A Little Help For Our Friends” Podcast: In this podcast, friends and psychologists Jacqueline Trumbull and Dr. Kibby McMahon discuss topics around mental health woes and diagnoses, like alcohol addiction, OCD, and grief, to name a few, in the context of personal stories and research. I first came across an episode about Trumbull’s experience leaving her fiancé two weeks before their wedding from the newsletter Rich Text, then promptly listened to their episode on divorce before diving fully into the catalogue. As a counseling student, I admire how vulnerably both hosts share, and how knowledgable they are about each carefully researched topic, though I have a sense it would appeal to all.