Here are some ways to celebrate the holidays safely

Gail Gates PHOTO CREDIT: Contributed

The holiday season is certainly looking different this year. I hope you were able to find a way to safely celebrate Thanksgiving.

It’s a good idea to start thinking now about Christmas or other holidays you might be celebrating and how you can honor the holiday while keeping your loved ones safe.

You’ve surely heard by now that gatherings with people outside your household, whether large or small, is a driver of COVID-19. With the traditional holiday festivity centering around a big meal with extended family, I’d like you to rethink what your celebration looks like.

However, instead of thinking about what you might be giving up this year, think about ways you can add new, and safe, traditions to your holiday celebrations. They might end up being the most loved traditions of all.

Here are some low-risk activities to enjoy:

• Have a small dinner with only people who live in your household.

• Prepare traditional family recipes and deliver them to loved ones in a way that doesn’t involve contact.

• Host a virtual dinner with friends and family.

• Use curbside pickup for holiday shopping.

• Enjoy outdoor activities like caroling or sledding with your household.

• Watch a Christmas movie.

• Take a drive to see holiday lights.

• Send thoughtful messages or cards to nursing home residents.

Remember that practicing safe measures now, even if it means doing things very differently, can help keep your loved ones safe so that you can celebrate many more holidays to come.

For more information on COVID-19, visit the following sites:

• idph.iowa.gov/Emerging-Health-Issues/Novel-Coronavirus.

• www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/ 2019-ncov.

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