With the holiday season fast approaching, planning your celebrations around this new normal can feel heavy with COVID-19 looming overhead like a dark cloud. Amongst all the detriment that the Coronavirus has caused our world, the silver lining is that the holiday season tends to bring about a piece of magic that can only be felt this time of year. Changing plans may feel burdensome but use this newfound change as a way to lay the foundation for new holiday traditions while staying safe and healthy.
Opt for more intimate gatherings
First and foremost, stick to state and local guidelines when planning for your holiday celebrations. It is best to keep your gatherings small and safe due the rapid nature that COVID-19 spreads. Dine only with those in your immediate household or opt for an outdoor meal to ensure proper distancing is enacted. If you typically have guests travel in for the holidays, consider dining together virtually to keep the conversation flowing while keeping everyone as safe as possible. There are numerous video chat platforms to choose from that you can stream onto bigger devices in your home to feel closer.
If you decide to host a smaller in-person event stick to these ideal guidelines:
- Keep the guest list small and intimate. Do not pack your home with people this season as the more people you come in contact with, the higher the risk of infection becomes
- Disinfect high traffic areas often
- Skip the potluck style dining and create individual plating options to avoid cross contamination
- Use disposable dishes and dinnerware
- Avoid close contact greetings like hugs, kisses and handshakes
We understand that this new normal can feel isolating, especially when it comes to the quintessential holiday meal (cue daydreaming of turkey, ham, stuffing and all the pie that you can eat), but remember that safety is imperative now for us to return to big gatherings in the future. Instead of letting this change dampen your plans, use it as a way to build something new for 2020.
Send your loved ones holiday cheer
Holiday mail equals happiness, right? From Christmas cards to surprise gifts, the mail adds a bit of magic to our holiday celebrations. Here are a few ways to add some sparkle to others’ day via mail:
- Consider taking holiday-themed family portraits (from afar) this year and sending them out to all of your family and friends so they have a little piece of your own holiday cheer in their home. These make great keepsakes for years to come
- If you typically purchase gifts for family outside of the home, continue with that theme just via mail. Wrap the gifts as you normally would, to add that extra piece of holiday cheer, and send them in a special package with a note that says, “Do not open until…” with the specified holiday. Although you may not be able to open them together, you can still celebrate virtually on the special holiday
- Create personalized gift baskets for family, friends and neighbors. Include things that have a personal meaning to your relationship and the holiday at play. Some fun ideas include personalized ornaments, favorite snacks and treats, stocking stuffers, small home décor items and pictures. Have fun as a family creating a basket full of love
Relish the season in your own nest
Nothing feels quite like the holiday season than a home decorated from top to bottom in themed décor, right? Can you smell the holiday candles already? Use the extra time that you may have right now to make your home feel like a place fit for the holidays. Even if you choose to celebrate each holiday ahead intimately with your immediate family, the décor brings the holiday to life a bit more and that is something we all need after a hectic year. Take out the decorations a bit earlier and outfit each room of your home based on your desired theme. Don’t forget to decorate the exterior of your home to bring a bit of extra holiday cheer to your neighborhood.
With the holiday season on our heels, we must plan differently due to COVID-19. Don’t let the change in circumstances push you to miss out on the magic of the season. Switch up your traditions and choose ways to celebrate that are safe and satisfying for you and your family.