Happy May, everyone. You made it through another week. This week, we’ve got advice for an unusual Mother’s Day, and some breathing techniques to help you relax. But before we get there:

  • We’ve got the best online events and streams this week, including a DJ Jazzy Jeff block party, a Broadway Mother’s Day spectacular, and a video tour through the Mütter Museum’s odd collection. Get the full list at inquirer.com/calendar.
  • Our kids calendar will keep your kids occupied when you’re trying to work. The calendar is updated every Sunday morning with activities for the week. You can always find it at inquirer.com/kidscalendar
  • Want to go outside? There was news this week about Shore beaches starting to reopen. Is it safe to go? Here’s what you need to know before you even think of going. More on how to do things now at inquirer.com/topic/do-this

Stay healthy, stay safe, and, as much as possible, stay home.

Try this mindful breathing exercise to help calm stress and panic during these times.
Cynthia Greer
Try this mindful breathing exercise to help calm stress and panic during these times.

Your questions, answered

» TELL US: What would help make your life easier right now? Email us at thingstodo@inquirer.com.

Celebrate this

It’s Mother’s Day this weekend. And as much as many of us would like to hug our mums right now, we can’t (unless they live with us). Elizabeth Wellington looked into how we can show our love from a safe social distance. Here’s the cheat sheet:

  • Can I have flowers delivered? The short answer: Yes. But you may be able to get them for Mother’s Day, but you may not be able to get them on Mother’s Day. Why? Many local florists have shut down, since they are not allowed to continue physical operations. And arrangers who are doing contactless delivery may need a few extra days to gather blossoms from local farms.
  • You can still send a card. According to the USPS website, the postal service has “so far experienced only minor operational impacts in the United States as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.” It may not arrive in time, but it will get there. If you plan to send a specially made gift through the mail, don’t forget your mask or you won’t be waited on.
  • Brunch is not canceled. You can’t go out for brunch, but you can get it delivered. And there are similar hacks for other Mother’s Day go-tos: You can put together a self-care gift basket with drugstore items and drop it off (in lieu of a spa day), and there’s always wine, which you can also order for delivery.

We want to know how you’re celebrating right now. If you’ve come up with a clever way to celebrate birthdays and other notable milestones, we want to hear about it.

Be mindful about this

It can be hard to find calm with everything going on right now. And anxiety and dread can actually change the way you breathe, writes Cassie Owens. She spoke with Kapil Nayar, a counselor and mindfulness expert who grew up in Moorestown, N.J. for some exercises on how to calm you mind, and body down.

  • Box Breathing: Take a long breath over four seconds. Hold that breath for four seconds. Exhale over four seconds. Hold for four seconds. Start over. Nayar says you can vary the number of seconds, and tailor it to your body. Nayar recommends trying it for two to five minutes and see how you feel. Some people will feel better right away; others may need longer. And remember: mindfulness is a practice. It takes time, and gets easier.

Nayar has another breathing exercise, and a 20-minute guided relaxation audio session, in Cassie’s full story.