After more than 8 months in quarantine, enduring isolation, it’s no surprise that we are all looking forward to the upcoming holidays. We’ll be able to finally enjoy the companionship of our loved ones and spent some cheerful moments during Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and other holidays. But the question on everyone’s minds is:
How to celebrate safely during the pandemic?
We want to make sure that our families and our communities stay healthy and safe to reduce the spread of COVID-19, therefore everyone should do its best to obey local rules and laws.
Here are some key factors for celebrating holidays during covid.
The lowest risk option is of course virtual. I know you’re feeling like your whole year it’s been an unending Zoom call- but you can still make it fun, to share with your friends and family especially if they live far away.
Be creative! Activities like singing, playing games, or even ordering food from your family’s favorite restaurant and having it delivered will give it a special feel.
As cases continue to increase across the United States, the safest way to celebrate is at home with the people you live with. Gatherings with family and friends who do not live with you can increase the chances of getting or spreading the virus.
Before choosing to attend a gathering or not, take into consideration the number of attendees- more people means more risk-, the ventilation, and check infection rates in the area where you plan to celebrate.
What if you are hosting?
Remember It’s Ok to not invite someone you know it’s not consistently adhering to the social distancing norms. ‘Sorry pal, you’ll miss all the fun for not using a mask and not washing your hands’.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends avoiding singing or shouting. So, if karaoke is a priority for you, then you should think about going virtual.
Don’t be ashamed to ask your guest to avoid contact with people outside of their households for 14 days before the gathering. It’s for everyone’s sake!
It’s safer if everyone brings food for themselves and their household. But if you think that’s not very festive, you can wear a mask while preparing food and have only one person serving carefully to avoid multiple people handling the food.
The use of alcohol might cause poor judgment –ugh not again- and as a result difficult to practice COVID-19 safety measures.
And what about our dear pets? They are a part of the family and should be treated as such. Meaning, avoiding contact with people outside the household.
Finally, the most important thing to consider is: Will the attendees from different households be able to stay 6 feet (2 arm lengths) apart? If not, then maybe it’s best to hold the event outdoors.
Unfortunately, anyone having symptoms, who have been recently exposed to someone with COVID-19 or is at higher risk shouldn’t leave the household and therefore, avoid in-person gatherings. But they can definitely be there on a video call.
Following the safety measures should be the priority. Yes, we want to relax and forget all of this happened, but our circumstances have changed and that means making some adjustments. Celebrations this year have to be different, but we can still make the best of it and have a traditional celebration in these new conditions.