Published December 10, 2020
Tis the time to celebrate!
Usually filled to the brim with festive gatherings of friends and family, this year will be a bit different. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and our rising hospitalization rates, its recommended that everyone celebrates their favorite in-person festivities just with those in their households.
While gathering virtually may not spark the same sense of cheer as past get-togethers, you can make the holiday festivities just as fun.
Host your own virtual gathering.
Using your preferred video chat platform, invite your friends and family together to share a meal, open presents or chat over dessert.
Try to take any usual family traditions and make them virtual. Whether it’s decorating cookies together or singing songs, hop on a virtual call and bake and sing together!
Several streaming platforms also feature watch parties – consider hosting a holiday movie showing with your loved ones.
Look for virtual celebrations.
A quick search online for virtual holiday celebrations (e.g. “celebrate Hanukkah virtually” or “celebrate Christmas virtually”) will yield numerous results of ways to join community events and events across the nation! From tree and candle lightings to virtual singalongs and religious services, there is an activity for everyone.
Make your house a winter wonderland.
Take advantage of the time at home and decorate it to your heart’s desire. With normally scheduled events to celebrate cancelled this year, take advantage of the extra time at home and deck the halls!
Do some holiday baking.
Every year, it seems like there aren’t enough weekends to do all the activities, visits and baking we’d like. This year, with less commitments, that can mean more baking! Bonus points: wear a mask while cooking, package up the goodies and deliver them to neighbors, family and friends.
Self-care plays an important role in our lives year-round, but especially around the holidays it can be essential to help reduce stress and keep you on track. Check out tips from very own Natalie Robertello, MS, RD for healthy techniques to get you through the holidays.
Take a drive with your household through the neighborhood to look at all the festive lights. Play holiday music, roll the windows down and make it a caroling event as you drive by.
Or, try decorating a tree outside. Bundle up, stay socially distant, wear a mask and decorate any tree in your yard! Have households take a turn going up to the tree to place ornaments. Pro tip: Make it a festive feeder tree for birds! Having a tree with edible ornaments will not only be a pretty display, but bring feathered visitors by each day. Click here for how to make your own.
Search for COVID-19 appropriate events.
Especially in WNY, many organizations have transformed traditional holiday experiences into COVID-safe events. Consider ones that provide for ample social distancing, little-to-no contact with shared objects and proper masking. Don’t forget to bring hand sanitizer with you for any such events.
Try giving back.
Donate to your local foodbank, raise funds virtually for a good cause or volunteer your time to a local organization.
This year, giving back can include where you shop or eat. Support local restaurants and businesses by buying gift cards if you can, ordering to-go or picking up curbside.
You can still bond and share cheer this season even if apart.