Holiday Celebrations!

Friendsgiving: COVID Edition

The weekend prior to Thanksgiving is traditionally the most popular time for groups to host Friendsgiving. With the COVID-19 guidelines changing and restrictions tightening, is it still possible to host Friendsgiving? If it is, how so? Here are my tips to help keep you “COVID compliant” while celebrating!

  1. Keep the celebration to your “quarantine pod.”
    • Throughout this pandemic, health professionals have continually reminded us to keep our contact groups small and this holiday is no different. Keep your invite list to the friends you have regularly been seeing over the last several months.
    • Limit your total number of attendees to ensure you can accommodate all of them while still following social distancing guidelines.
      • Concerned your table is not large enough to seat everyone socially distant? Consider a picnic style setup and serve using trays!
  2. No one likes the proverbial “too many cooks in the kitchen.” This Friendsgiving, be sure to avoid it in real life as well!
    • I know cooking together is a favorite holiday activity for many; however, to maintain social distancing and minimize sharing of cooking/baking utensils, keep it to one or two socially distant people in the kitchen at a time.
    • This also applies to clean up after the meal!
  3. Consider using paper plates and disposable flatwear.
    • Not only does this make cleanup easier, it also makes it safer by having each person dispose of their own things.
  4. Opt out of buffet or family style meal service.
    • In an effort to minimize contact and the use of the same serving pieces by many people, I suggest serving your guests individual plates from the kitchen. As the host, you can ask each attendee their food preferences and make the plate for them.
  5. Take the celebration outdoors.
    • If the weather permits or you have a covered space with heaters, setup your table outdoors!
    • If you do not have an outdoor space to use, open the windows to increase ventilation.
  6. Continue to adhere to the safety guidelines in place.
    • When indoors and not eating or drinking, wear a mask.
    • Regularly wash your hands.
    • Refrain from handshakes and hugs.

Concerned about leaving someone out or not comfortable gathering even with those who have been in your pod? It is OK!
It simply is not possible from a safety perspective to see everyone this year. I know the majority of people are tired of virtual gatherings, but in times like these, it is incredibly important to stay connected. In addition to a virtual check-in, send a card and/or care package with some holiday activities and goodies included. It is tough to be separated from loved ones and miss out on beloved traditions, so be sure to check on your friends who are missing the social interactions and visits typically planned for this time of year!

However you plan to celebrate, I wish y’all a happy and healthy Friendsgiving! I highly encourage you use these tips for your actual Thanksgiving day celebrations as well.

Be well, y’all!

AB

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