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Six Ideas for a Safe and Fun Thanksgiving

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Thanksgiving is going to look very different for most of us this year.  According to the Center For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, people who are in the highest risk categories  (older adults and people with medical conditions) shouldn’t travel nor gather with anyone outside of their immediate household. 

But different doesn’t necessarily have to be a bad thing. Here are some ideas to make the holiday special despite the safety limitations:

  1. Set up a Zoom session with as many family members as possible. Ask everyone to share either a story, photo, heirloom or keepsake from prior Thanksgiving holidays. Zoom removed the 40-minute limit for all meetings globally on Thanksgiving, so your family gatherings won’t get cut short. Designate one person to record and/or take screenshots of the Zoom session itself. It will be something to talk about in the years to come.
  2. Focus on the positive – things you still can do, such as making Grandma’s favorite sweet potato pie. You can cook up a traditional holiday meal with all the trimmings, just in smaller portions. And that means less dishes, pots and pans to wash and put away!
  3. Some annual traditions will continue. You can watch football games, movies and the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade (in a revised format) on TV.
  4. We live in a beautiful state! Head outdoors, weather permitting, and take a socially distanced walk around your neighborhood or in a nearby park. Or, take a drive to a favorite scenic spot that you can enjoy from your car.
  5. Shop from the comfort of your home (and computer) on the Friday after Thanksgiving. No searching for parking spots or weaving through crowds of shoppers to find the perfect gifts.
  6. Write a letter of gratitude to someone you care about – family member, friend, neighbor, member of the military, local police or fire fighters. Getting a letter in the mail is a real treat!

Yes, there will be feelings of disappointment this year being apart from our families and loved ones. But if you keep a positive attitude, you can use your ingenuity to make it a lovely celebration regardless.  And maybe you’ll create a new way of celebrating that will become an annual tradition post-COVID-19?


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