First things are first. There is no social distancing; we are practicing physical distancing. Stay Connected. Loneliness and isolation produced mental health challenges are a significant byproduct of the pandemic. Social connectedness is tied to both our physical and psychological health.
Start a Group Text with friends or extended family. Science shows there's power in constant kinship, even if it's a simple daily "thinking of you" message. Remind your friends you care, and they'll remind you back.
Organize a virtual movie or game night.
Have a regular weekly video chat with friends and family.
Sharing a meal is the main holiday activity for most families. There are several ways we can still have this experience during physical distancing, where we can eat together but separately.
If family members live within driving distance, they can plan the menu together and share it by delivering to the front doors. So later everyone shares the same meal.
Exchange recipes with families that live far. If your kids love grandma's dish, have face time with granny, and cook this dish together with your child.
Consider planning a menu (with readily available ingredients) that everyone in the family can make on the same evening. Each individual or nuclear family can contribute a recipe for one course of the meal. There's comfort and unity to be found in knowing that mom, dad, or your favorite cousins are eating the same meal at the same time as you. When it's time to eat, share photos of your creations on a family group text or consider hopping on Zoom together for a virtual dinner party.
Another holiday idea is the Holidays Family DropBox for relatives nearby. Each household is leaving a box, preferably with a lid, in a designated place by the house. Everyone commits to dropping off something special — perhaps a note, a photo, or some little gift, or few cookies — in each other's box weekly, daily, or with whatever frequency suits everyone best.
Have a great and safe Holiday.
With Love and Light