2020 has been the year that many of us became intimately acquainted with Zoom (or Skype or whatever your platform of choice may be.) Even for me, someone who lives far away from their family and who video calls people regularly, 2020 has taken videos calls to a whole new level. With the holidays approaching you may want to treat those pixelated faces on your laptop to some end-of-year cheer!
Zoom friend #1: your grandparents, who spend more time angling the iPad screen at the ceiling than toward their face.
There’s nothing like technology to keep us connected with the people we love (seriously, I would never have been able to move to another country without knowing I could call at any time and see my parents’ faces), but video calls have a steep learning curve. Something that is super helpful, is an iPad case with a stand. There’s plenty of options but this one on Amazon is nice and sturdy. Bonus points, this one has a screen protector so when the dog knocks it over, the screen won’t smash. Win!
Zoom friend #2: the people in your weekly wine o’clock Zoom chat.
I have a group chat with my girlfriends every Wednesday evening. It’s usually chaos, because everyone is excited to catch up and we all talk over one another, but it’s totally a highlight my quarantine week. Usually part of the discussion revolves around what everyone is drinking. A wine journal is a great way to keep track of the beverages you’ve enjoyed and by the time we’re able to have in-person events again, you’ll all have a great list of bottles to share! Bonus idea: for the wine-loving friend who’s also a bookworm, try the Essential Guide to Wine to combine two loves into one gift.
Zoom friend #3: the friend who’s always showing off their adorable puppy (or kitty!)
I love people who bring their pets into a Zoom chat. As a wannabe fur-mama myself, I appreciate being able to live vicariously until my husband and I are ready for the pitter patter of little paws ourselves. Want to get your friend something to honour their pet? You can get custom socks made with their pet’s face printed all over them. Super cute, right?
Zoom friend #4: the stylish friend who always looks immaculate on video calls
There’s a real art to dressing for work-related Zoom calls. I’m a fan of the “Zoom mullet” business on top and party (aka sweatpants and Uggs) on the bottom. But this is where multitasking outfits can really make all the difference—since we’re less “desk to date” and more “desk to couch” these days, an outfit that’s stylish and comfy is key. I love the Wool& swing dress in cosy merino wool which looks equally cute out of the house with boots and a scarf as it does on your video screen.
Zoom friend #5: the friend with the pretty background
Everyone had that friend, right? The one whose real-life Zoom background looks like it belongs on a Pinterest board for interior design. That friend loves details, so why not get them something personalized? Candles personalized with an initial or saying, like this one, make a thoughtful gift that will be a perfect, ambient addition to their background. Bonus, you get to choose the scent that will suit them best!
Zoom friend #6: the friend who’s always doing something while you chat
As the resident “need to keep my hands busy” person on my Zoom calls, I appreciate that some people like to multitask. Why not give that friend something fun to keep their hands occupied that will also yield a practical end-product? When I first learned to knit, Wool and the Gang was my go-to for their easy-to-learn patterns and gorgeous yarn. Try something like the Foxy Roxy scarf which uses thick yarn and big needs to make it totally beginner friendly.
I know 2020 isn’t what most of us had hoped for. But with all kinds of technology to keep us connected, I know we can get through this together. Stay strong and safe, friends. I hope your holidays are filled with joy, laughter and loads of happy Zoom calls.
About the Author:
Stefanie London is the multi award-winning, USA Today bestselling author of contemporary romances and romantic comedies.
Stefanie’s books have been called “genuinely entertaining and memorable” by Booklist, and “Elegant, descriptive and delectable” by RT magazine. Her stories have been nominated for multiple industry awards, including the Romance Writers of America RITA award, and have won the HOLT Medallion and Reader’s Choice.
Originally from Australia, she now lives in Toronto with her very own hero and is currently in the process of doing her best to travel the world. She frequently indulges in her passions for good coffee, lipstick, romance novels and anything zombie-related.
Kissing Lessons by Stefanie London, out now!
Welcome to Kissing Creek, where everything has a romance-themed pun for a name and love is lurking around every corner…
Audrey Miller doesn’t believe in happily-ever-after, so she is definitely living in the wrong town. But she’s never getting out of Kissing Creek, because playing pseudo-mom for her younger siblings doesn’t leave time for much else. She’ll do anything to make sure they don’t end up stuck like she is, working as a barista in a college town, serving Pink Passion mochas with Chocolate Smooch donuts.
Then Ronan Walsh, a new young professor and walking cliché, right down to the elbow patches on his blazer, steps in for a coffee and into her life. She knows his type—intelligent and charming, yet sweet as a cinnamon roll, the sort of man she’s inevitably attracted to but is always out of her league. So why does someone like him have any interest in a worker bee with no future?
Her bland-as-oatmeal existence has nothing to offer, but Ronan’s temporary teaching position is only a stepping stone on his way to somewhere else. He isn’t here to put down roots, Audrey’s roots are firmly planted—neither of them is looking for love. And maybe that’s just perfect.
But in a small town called Kissing Creek, sometimes love can be impossible to avoid…