It is supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year but let’s face it, everything about 2020 has been anything but traditional.
As many of us look to the holiday season, some of our beloved traditions may not be accessible to us or just aren’t possible this year.
It is enough to bring out some pre-holiday blues to be sure but there are still lots of ways to make amazing holiday memories with those who you hold dear.
Different doesn’t have to be dreadful and there are some great new traditions that you can begin this year to carry on for many holidays to come!
There are so many fun quarantine Christmas ideas you can do while social distancing.
• Deck the Halls: I may not get to visit my friends’ homes this season but I can still enjoy their festive holiday decor!
Recently, my social media feed has been chock-full of photos of beautifully decorated homes, all decked out for the season.
Even if you are not hosting or visiting anyone this season, your home can still look like a scene from a Hallmark movie!
Snap and share lots of photos on social media and don’t forget to add some outdoor lighting touches!
It doesn’t matter if you channel your inner Clark Griswold or just add a few simple twinkling lots across your roofline — you will bring lots of enjoyment to those that drive by.
Make a holiday tradition of taking a drive out with your family to look at the holiday lights!
Pack some portable hot cocoa, tune the radio to some classic tunes and enjoy what your neighbors have done to add a little holiday magic to their own homes!
It may become one of your most beloved holiday traditions!
• Virtual Visit with the North Pole: We all know that a classic rite of passage — albeit an often terrifying one — is your child’s visit with Santa Claus.
It is hard to explain to littles how a silly pandemic can slow down a man who magically delivers billions of toys in one night so why not find a new and safe way to connect with Father Christmas?
There are some fun ways to do so — check out Portable Northpole, which customizes a call or video to your child or Jingle Ring or Santa Club, which schedules a live virtual visit with Santa and his crew!
All of these do cost a bit but offer you a video keepsake of your visit.
Who knew that you could Zoom at the North Pole?
Sure, it isn’t the same as standing in those long lines at the mall with hundreds of excited kids for a minute or two with Kris Kringle but I have no doubt, you will see some magic in your sweet child’s eyes just the same!
• The Twelve Meals of Christmas: One of the things that I have found about the holiday season is that I am so busy doing my Christmas shopping and attending all those holiday events that are probably not happening this year, that I spend most family meal times during the month, picking up drive-through or carryout meals for my family!
Pick some of your favorite comfort meals and plan a 12 days of holiday meals with your family!
It can be holiday favorites from a family recipe or just a meal that lets you prepare a meal together as a family.
Be sure to make them special with a fun Christmas themed dessert or after dinner hot chocolate treat.
If you have little ones, give your menu fun and festive names such as Rudolph’s Roast Beef, Santa’s Spaghetti and Meatballs or Frosty’s Festive Chicken Casserole!
It will make meal time that much more fun and add an extra layer to your holiday that you never realized you needed.
• Cookies and Cocktails: For many of us, the holidays are a time when we travel to see friends and family who we only get to see during the season.
If you are staying home this season, why not plan a cookies and cocktails get together via Zoom or Google with those that you can’t see in person?
Bake cookies with your family — you can get as fancy as you like — and send your favorite recipe to anyone that you would like to share in your festivities!
If it is a mostly adult gathering, find a few cocktail recipes to prepare in advance and raise your glasses together to toast to a much quieter and less “socially distanced” celebration in 2021.
Google “Boozy Grinch Punch” or “Peppermintinis” for some inspiration!
(Editor’s Note: Kristine George is a freelance journalist who resides in Easton.)