Your Guide to Getting Groceries Conveniently and Safely

As you do your part to stay healthy and stay indoors, the need for basic staples remains the same. Grocery stores are open for you to replenish your food supplies whenever needed. Don’t forget to wear a mask at all times while grocery shopping in order to curb the spread of COVID-19.

However, there are plenty of alternatives to shopping in-store, so we want to share with you some resources that will help you to get food conveniently and safely.

It’s worth noting that it’s not always easy to get delivery and curbside pickup from the bigger box stores like Giant Eagle and Walmart. For this reason, consider more local services to meet your needs.

In addition to grocery shopping, you might be interested in fully-prepared meals from your favorite restaurants. Support local businesses if you’re able to as many restaurants are offering both takeout and delivery options.

Grocery Delivery Services

Best Grocery Delivery

You can order from this local independent service online or by phone. Best Grocery Delivery doesn’t offer same-day delivery, so place your order before 8:00 PM to receive your groceries the following day. A minimum of $60 is required and there is no extra fee for orders under $200. Orders over $200 will incur a delivery fee of 15% of the order.


Instacart will deliver within Pittsburgh from Costco, Aldi, Target, Shop ‘n Save, Restaurant Depot, CVS, and Petco. Delivery fees are anywhere from $3.99 to $7.99, but the membership service is $9.99/month or $99/year will allow for free delivery on orders over $35.


Postmates doesn’t keep inventory of store items in its app, so instead, you’ll keep a list of things you need in the app. Your delivery driver will text or call you about substitutions if need be.

Postmates pricing ranges from $0.99 – $9.99 plus a percentage of your cart total. With an Unlimited Membership at $9.99/month, there’s no extra delivery fee on orders over $12.

Grocery Curb-Side Pickup

If you prefer to drive to the grocery store and simply pick up your cart that you’ve put together online, then Giant Eagle & Market District, Target, Walmart, and Whole Foods all offer options. Since demand is high, you may need to pick a time slot, and availability may be sparse, so be sure to plan ahead.

Restaurant Takeout & Delivery

There are many restaurants to choose from even now as many businesses are closed. There are frankly too many to list, but a few things to keep in mind are that some restaurants don’t have their own delivery staff. Look into which restaurants use Postmates, GrubHub, and UberEats to fulfill orders for if you are in need of delivery.

If you’re more flexible, then takeout is an option provided by most restaurants. Menus may be modified, but businesses are doing their best to meet the needs of their communities, so they appreciate your patronage.

Additional Resources

If you’re looking for a more comprehensive list of all your grocery options, then be sure to take a look at this article from Very Local Pittsburgh for all the current offerings in Pittsburgh.
For a general list of restaurants open for takeout and/or delivery at this time, see this post from Pittsburgh City Paper or this list from

5 Creative Hobbies To Try When You’re Bored

By now you have probably exhausted a lot of your regular hobbies, so why not tap into some new ideas! With the weather warming up, get fresh air with a short walk (and practice social distancing, of course), try your hand at painting, or start your own herb garden to pass the time.

We put together a few ideas to help you inject some creativity next time you are feeling a bit bored.


Watercolors or acrylics? Painting can be the perfect hobby to pick up right now. If you are a beginner look up some instructional videos on YouTube. Don’t have paint around the house? Places like Michael’s and Target are doing curbside pickup, plus you can also check out Amazon.

Not interested in the mess of painting. There are several great paint by number apps to try like Happy Color.


We always talk about how we never have time to read. Well, with this newfound free time, we can all pick up a good book.

Learn a new skill or get lost in another land instead of staring at Netflix for hours. Can’t decide? Do a quick google search for some best sellers or even check to see if your favorite celebrity has a go-to list out there.


While needlepoint might seem a bit old fashioned, it is the perfect craft to keep your mind moving and leave you with a fun little home accessory.

From Amazon to Target, and even little local shops, you can buy needlepoint kits with everything you need. After you finish, put it into a picture frame for a great accent to a gallery wall.


While you probably don’t have tons of land to garden on, there are a variety of ways you can grow fresh produce or herbs right in your own place.

If you don’t have access to an outdoor space, try an indoor herb garden kit, or even tomatoes if you get enough sun. Those with a small patio space but no grass, go for a raised garden bed in your outdoor area.

Still not confident of where or how to begin, visit the Shadyside Nursery new online store. If you’re new to plant life, this team can get you started the right way.

Tie Dying

Remember tie-dying as a kid? Find some white clothes and order a kit because this trend is back! Like the other crafts we discussed, you can look at places like Michael’s and Target who are offering fast delivery or curbside pick. Also, check Amazon (who seems to sell everything) for a non-toxic tie-dye kit!

Try something new this week! You never know what you, and even your family, might enjoy and pick up as your new go-to during this extra time at home.

How to Survive Quarantine as an Apartment Dweller

For people all across the US and the rest of the world, the COVID-19 predicament is felt in various different ways, but also with many commonalities. It’s not easy being cooped up in an apartment for weeks on end. As you handle your day to day, do what you can to look out for and take care of yourself, and don’t lose sight of the needs of your very own community.

Your Franklin West neighbors are all up against the same struggles, and there’s plenty of uncertainty as it is, but that uncertainty will meet the light of day and this will resolve. In the meantime, as tensions run high and you may not encounter your neighbors in the same ways as before, be mindful of them so that everybody may get through this as easily as possible.

To help navigate this brand new way of life that may feel like an assignment in a naval submarine, here are a few ideas that might just make this time a bit more bearable for everybody.

Be Patient with Your Neighbors

Deep breaths are important. This isn’t the wellness suggestion you may be used to seeing. We’re not actually talking about measuring air into your lungs, but rather timing your responses to things that may be bothersome. For instance, if one of your neighbors is entertaining their little ones with five hours of Baby Shark, then do your very best to wait just a short while before coming to them or the Franklin West staff with your complaint. 

The main idea here is to avoid a heat-of-the-moment debacle that erupts into a feud. Five hours of Baby Shark is rather excessive and enough to drive anyone up the wall, but a little bit of patience is better fuel for civil discourse than retaliation or nastiness. On the other side of that coin, if you’re thinking that hours of Baby Shark will be good for your toddler, then please do-do-do think of your neighbors’ sanity.

TIP: Take advantage of practicing the 24-Hour Rule. This great rule of thumb is actually a sports reference that says, “Parents/guardians are not allowed to confront a coach, team or league official to discuss any “negative” game or practice situation with the coaching and management staff until at least 24 hours has passed from the completion of the game or practice.”

When your neighbor has their tv turned up a bit too high or sounds like they are breaking in a new pair of heels, we ask you to apply the 24-hour rule and take a pause. Find out if the issue was a very small, isolated incident, or if it’s a recurring thing in need of addressing. Furthermore, waiting 24 hours before reaching out to your neighbor or Franklin West allows for the conversation to be calm and effective in solving the issue.

Coping Mechanisms

It’s silly to expect anyone to act completely normal through all this. And it’s completely okay if you recognize you’re not in your usual state of mind. That’s why it’s important now more than ever to find a way to cope with the stresses you’re facing. 

  • Exercise is a great coping mechanism. Find a workout video on YouTube to get your blood moving so your body doesn’t feel neglected. Do your best to free the stresses of your mind by allowing your body to help out. As always, please be cognizant of your downstairs neighbor. Even if you are exercising at “normal” hours, remember that everyone’s “normal” hours are different. If you have hardwood floors and high ceilings, remember that these attractive amenities can cause sound vibrations to be amplified. Simple jumping jacks can sound like a stomping parade to the apartment dweller below. One remedy is investing in additional rugs or mats to dampen the sound and vibration for the benefit of those below.
  • Laughing really is great medicine. Find something that tickles your funny bone and chuckle away! There’s tons of great standup on Netflix and YouTube as well as award-winning comedy shows ripe for the picking. You don’t need to go on a complete binge, but even just a small pick-me-up can brighten up your day and clear your mind.
  • Connect and re-connect with friends and family. You’re no doubt a frequent Zoom user now if you weren’t before. Make an effort to add time to your calendar that isn’t work-related to connect with an old friend group you haven’t spoken to in a while. Drop-in on your best friend or a sibling to see what they’re up to. You can even play some games over a video call. Check out Heads Up in the App Store or Google Play Store.
  • Take a nap! If stay-at-home measures have allowed you any more flexibility in your schedule, then listen to your body if it’s tired. Get some good shut-eye and perhaps you’ll wake up after twenty minutes feeling like a million bucks.

Sharing Facilities

When it’s chore day and you have all your laundry to do, be sure to give others their space. Of course, this always applies, but for the health and safety of our communities, it’s especially important now. If it’s a bit too crowded in the laundry room, then revisit later and go do some of your other chores. Don’t have any other chores? Offer to do someone else’s. Just kidding. If it’s nice out, go take a much-needed socially-distanced walk outside and smell the fresh air. In short, just go relax for the time being.

Much of the same applies to common areas as well. Leave space for others so that nobody feels uncomfortable or worried about potential exposures.

What to Expect Regarding Apartment Maintenance

If you have any issues in your apartment, then please submit your requests as usual. As always, we’ll be doing our best to fix any issues in a timely manner. Be mindful of the urgency of your requests.

Our maintenance personnel is dedicated and diligent, but they also want to limit their contact with others in the same way you do. If it takes longer than usual, then we do apologize, but we are trying to look out for everybody’s health and well-being.

That said, do not hesitate to submit your maintenance requests. We want to know of the issues you encounter and keep a record of them when they first appear. Just know that a toilet spewing water into the air like a geyser will likely appear on the maintenance to-do list before a loose knob on a cupboard.

Upcoming Scavenger Hunt

Another way to help with the shortage of things to do at the moment will be our upcoming Franklin West scavenger hunt. We’ll send out more info when it’s all ready, but you’ll have a week to complete it. The scavenger hunt will be composed of a mixture of questions based on walking tours and info available on the Franklin West website. If you have a keen eye for detail and a love for puzzles, then be sure to look out for this upcoming activity for all! (P.S. The winners will receive a gift card to a local shop.)

Keep Doing Your Part

In light of everything happening in the world, we want to thank you for participating in curbing the spread of coronavirus. It’s not a great hand that we’ve all been dealt, but by playing our cards right, we’re sure to come out on top with our communities as healthy as possible. We appreciate you and encourage you to let us know what more we can be doing at this time to make sure you’re as comfortable as can be in your home.