Thursday May 07th, 2020




There’s no doubt that the COVID-19 outbreak is worth your attention. But we’re only human, and we can only sustain this level of worry for so long. This long weekend, if you find yourself needing to come up for air, turn to this list. It’s our top 10 ideas for distractions and diversions, courtesy of newsrooms across the Torstar family.


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1. Indulge in some self-care.
Embrace your natural surroundings as the soothing balm you need right now. Get the professional, salon-approved look at home if you’re missing your manicurist. It’s an uncertain moment, especially for your facial hair — here’s our advice for tackling hairy situations. Finish off the night with our wine lover’s guide to self-isolation, and how to make the most of what you already have. More of a cocktail person? Here’s how to perfect the art of the at-home happy hour.
2. Put on some tunes.
Listen to a self-isolation playlist from Toronto-based creatives, like this one from Josephine Cruz a.k.a JayemkayemDJ Atina ChaikithDJ Jenno Christian and award-winning recording artist Charlotte Day Wilson are also on the decks.
3. Do some much-needed retail therapy.
Give your hand-washing routine an upgrade with these nine luxurious lathersDo some mindful, meaningful redecorating with Etsy’s 2020 spring trend report. We’ve got the best workouts for social-distancing days, plus a round-up our favourite workout essentials. And it’s never been more important to support local brands — here’s how to buy Canadian now.

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4. Discover your new favourite podcast.
This Matters, the Toronto Star’s brand-new daily podcast, is exploring stories about our ever-changing society during the COVID-19 outbreak. Hosts Adrian Cheung, Saba Eitizaz and Raju Mudhar dive deep into a range of topics, like what happens to our minds during a pandemic, how pro sports warned the world about COVID-19 and why there’s no need to be the perfect quarantine parent.
5. Try a new recipe.
Flexibility is key right now, so get improvising with one of these “no-recipe” recipes. Up your coffee game with tips from Canada’s top barista. And if you’re planning on another round of bread-baking, know that you’re definitely not alone.

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6. Livestream it up.
Join the party — a bunch of comics are coming together to host a virtual comedy club. Plenty of musicians and museums are also streaming their content.
7. Bond over books.
Celebrated Canadian authors share how they’re connecting online, and how you can too.
8. Get your green thumb on.
We may be confined to our houses but spring is definitely here, and that means it’s time to start seeds indoors. Plus, as the world slows down, it may be time to tend tomatoes.

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9. Do a #StarChallenge.
The Star is challenging readers to try something new every week. This week, we’re asking you to send us the view from your window. Last week’s submissions were nothing short of amazing.
10. Breathe, and remember we’re all in this together.
This is the most important of all. We hope you take this weekend to relax, restore and reconnect with your favourite things and people — from a safe distance, of course.

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