(Editor’s Note…If you’re like me, adjusting to a new, COVID-19 world is a bit stressful. Everywhere you look…radio, TV, newspapers, and even the internet…are stories of the latest stats from around the world. Hospitalizations. Unemployment. Social distancing. How do we keep our sanity in the middle of all the craziness? 


For the next several weeks, many of my writerly friends will be virtually dropping by to inspire, uplift, and make us laugh as we look for reminders that even the scariest of times do not last forever. I hope you enjoy this FEEL GOOD FRIDAYS series. If you want to know more about me, Donna L Martin, or my books, check out my Story Catcher Publishing website at www.storycatcherpublishing.com)

Can Anything Good Come From the Corona Virus Crisis?

by Jarm Del Boccio


Can anything good come from a crisis? Particularly, the Covid-19 Pandemic? I’ve been thinking a lot about it lately, as I watch life as we once knew it fade into the distance, and a new normal come to the forefront. People grumble and panic. They blame and turn inward.




While some reveal a negative attitude in response to what is swirling around them, (let’s not mention the TP frenzy), others are doing something positive during this crisis. And I believe for many, it comes from deep inside with a heart of faith in God and His providence. Or, maybe for some, motivation to help the less fortunate.

Whichever it is, I am thankful. And I stand back with awe and gratitude. For a person of my age, I’m supposedly meant to hunker down at home. Well, I’m trying my best. But there are times. . .


chicagoChicago — the scene of a dystopian novel


Like the middle of March, when I took a trip to my happy place: Downtown Chicago. I played investigative reporter (like Nellie Bly, my latest research project), to see if things were truly closing down.

It was pretty much deserted. Even the pigeons were practicing social-distancing. So, how can the closing of stores, restaurants, schools, libraries and coffee shops (except for take out), be a good thing?




People are more in touch than ever. Can you see it happening? Have you taken part?

  • Families are more physically (how ironic) in touch with one another. Yes, it may drive some crazy to be in such close quarters, but on the whole, it’s positive. Wouldn’t surprise me if families continue playing board games, watching TV, going for walks, and reading books together.
  • Parents are appreciating what teachers have done for their children, now they themselves are home educating. Could it be that next fall, some kids beg to continue?
  • Experts are being generous by offering free seminars and classes. Authors make read-aloud and creative writing videos, offering them free, along with skype meetings, to school children sequestered at home.
  • Churches are hugging their congregations via social media, technology and prayer. Coming to the aid of those less fortunate inside and outside the church. Finding new ways to connect.
  • People are actually phoning their friends and family across the globe, and talking longer than ever before.
  • Creativity oozing from social media — Choir members performing from the safety of their own homes. Clever ways to connect with the elderly in locked-down nursing homes. Surprise birthday parties organized on Zoom. Crazy gifs to make a heavy heart light. Helpful links to get us through the crisis, and inspirational memes to encourage our spirits.
  • Customers are learning to think of others instead of themselves when it comes to stocking up on groceries and – well – you know.
  • People are reaching out to God, looking for some spiritual guidance and encouragement. And thinking about their final destination in light of the rampant virus.
  • And the list goes on. . .




I love to connect people with resources that can be helpful, especially in times like these. I hope something below will resonate with you!

Run out of ideas for your house-bound students? LEARNING RESOURCES FOR STUDENTS AT HOME

You may not have thought of these: WAYS CHURCHES CAN HELP IN A CRISIS

Going stir-crazy? Time for a break: 25 THINGS TO DO WITH YOUR FAMILY WHILE STUCK AT HOME

Have you always wanted to be artsy, but never had the time to take a class? Well, now there is no  excuse!  FREE WATERCOLOR CLASSES BY TRACY LIZOTTES

Sometimes you just need a fresh perspective – A WISE WAY TO LOOK AT EVENTS THROUGH THE LENS OF HISTORY

And here’s a video I was inspired to create after watching a few author buddies share their own:      A MIDDLE-GRADE CREATIVE WRITING ACTIVITY: FRACTURED FAIRY TALES – JARM DEL BOCCIO

For those of you who are architecture and history buffs: 6 BEAUTIFUL ITALIAN MUSEUMS TO VISIT FREE ONLINE 

I’D LOVE TO HEAR YOUR THOUGHTS – WHAT GOOD HAVE YOU NOTICED COMING FROM THE COVID-19 CRISIS? Please let me know in the comments below. And if you have a link with helpful tips to get us through, post those as well!

(This post was first published on Jarm’s inspirational blog last month)


Jarm book


Can an Israelite captive, wrenched from all she loves, serve the very man who destroyed her village?

Miriam is asked to do the impossible: serve the wife of Naaman, commander of the Syrian army. Clinging to treasured memories of home and faith, Miriam faces captivity with worry and bitterness. Little does she know the Heart Changer is wooing and preparing her for a greater mission—far beyond what she could imagine.

This middle-grade historical novel reflects the heartache and angst of a young refugee in a foreign land where all hope seems lost.

The Heart Changer Trailer: http://youtu.be/qM8Hl8Ah0HE

Teacher’s Guide for The Heart Changer: http://ambassador-international.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/TeachersGuide.pdf




Jarm (‘J’ pronounced as a ‘Y’) Del Boccio finds her inspiration in everyday life, but in particular, when she travels the globe, observing the quirky things that happen along the way. Focusing on lives of characters from the past, Jarm is devoted to breathing new life into the pages of history.

Jarm has a background in elementary and high school Art education, and served four years as school librarian. She spent two years in Papua New Guinea, teaching three missionary children in an isolated bush village without modern conveniences.

Jarm Del Boccio is content with the journey God has placed her on, and lives with her husband, adult daughter and son (when he lands at home), in a tree-lined suburb of Chicago. Her debut middle-grade historical fiction, The Heart Changer released with Ambassador International April 26th. You can connect with her at: http://www.jarmdelboccio.com/  or her author’s Facebook or Instagram accounts.

I’d love to Skype or visit with your class! : http://www.jarmdelboccio.com/school-visitsspeaking.html

Kids at home bored? Here’s a Fractured Fairy Tale writing activity for middle school: http://youtu.be/VK_IJKC9Hn4