As COVID-19 continues to change the way we live, and now it’s time to think about the holidays. Before you know it, Thanksgiving will be upon us, so now is the perfect time to start thinking outside of the box, figuring out unique ways to celebrate without risking anyone’s wellbeing this year, especially if you have older or high-risk relatives.
Stick to the Nuclear Family
It’s not what you imagined Thanksgiving to be like, but at least this year, it’s the safest. Stick with the family members you’re with all the time at the dinner table. Include extended family via Zoom or FaceTime. Plan your meals at the same time, set up the phone or iPad, and enjoy a meal together while apart.
You can crack the same jokes, have the same family fights, and still love one another while ensuring everyone’s safety.
Host Dinner Outdoors
If you have the opportunity (you live where the weather is great) or you have a heated tent, host dinner outdoors. Still space everyone that isn’t part of a household 6-feet apart, and keep the party outdoors as long as possible.
If family members must use the bathroom, disinfect it before and after each use to prevent the spread of any germs.
Don’t Share Dishes
If you have people besides your nuclear family over, avoid sharing dishes. Have everyone bring their family’s favorite dish and keep it for themselves.
Measure your Space
If you are having the party indoors, measure your area. How many people can you fit while properly social distancing, non-household members? It’s not worth taking a risk, especially since you’ll be in confined spaces with no masks while you eat.
It may feel awkward; however, you should ask your guests some pre-screening questions - do they feel sick, have they been out of province, have they been in contact with anyone with symptoms, etc. This is especially important if elderly grandparents or other high-risk relatives will attend.
Wear Face Masks
Again, it’s not ideal or what you pictured, but asking everyone to wear their face masks during the gathering is important. Obviously, everyone can shed the masks while eating or drinking, but proper social distancing should happen in its place.
Thanksgiving is a time to be thankful, and many of us have a lot to be thankful for as we worked our way through the pandemic. Even though the holiday may look different this year, make the best of it by being flexible and finding ways to include everyone safely, while still enjoying precious family time during one of the most celebrated holidays of the year.