Tara O’Brady is a chef, recipe developer and author (whose whole wheat peanut butter and honey cookies from her cookbook Seven Spoons come highly recommended). So it may not surprise you to learn that when the pandemic hit, she turned to food to help give herself and her family (she’s mom to two boys, 12 and 14) a sense of comfort and stability. “I am not a meal-planner,” says Tara, who’s based in the Niagara region of Ontario and is a self-described “emotional eater.” But with a need to limit trips to the grocery store, Tara began writing down her meal ideas for the week ahead in a notebook. The practice has not only made her feel organized, but now the book serves as a family diary of the last few months. “We see our moods through the food.” R29 Executive Editor Carley Fortune spoke with Tara about how she's been holding up through this challenging time, how her cooking habits have changed this year, and the unexpected benefit of allowing her boys to be bored.