Tips for healthy holidays

Like much of 2020, the holiday season is going to feel different -- but that doesn’t mean it has to be less cheery.

We all know the rules about staying safe already: wash our hands, wear a mask, carry hand sanitizer and stay physically distanced. But even during a pandemic, celebrating holidays like Hanukkah, Christmas and Kwanzaa are an important part of Albertans’ lives, so consider ways to keep holiday traditions intact while still staying safe.

Shop wisely

Consider staying away from shopping crowds as you prepare for the season. You can try:
  • Shopping off-peak hours
  • Getting curbside pick up from a local business
  • Buying gifts online
  • Donating to charity – such as one of Alberta’s food banks – in someone’s name
  • Writing a thoughtful card or letter in place of a gift

Get outside

There are both mental and physical benefits to being outside, and it can be a great way to celebrate the season.

Don’t forget the food!

Food is a central part of many holiday traditions. Some COVID-safe food sharing ideas could include:
  • Scheduling a virtual meal and preparing the same menu or ordering the same take out and eating it together virtually. Decorating your house or table, and dressing up for the meal, can help make it feel more festive and traditional
  • Organizing a virtual cookie decorating or gingerbread house building contest – may the most icing win!  

Be creative

Celebrating during a pandemic means staying away from indoor gatherings in large groups, but there are ways to feel close to friends and family if even you are not in the same room.
  • Consider opening gifts together using an online platform such as Zoom
  • Gather your friends in their own cars to visit holiday lights. Look for online suggestions of places to visit, like Spruce Meadows drive thru lights or the map of Calgary’s residential Christmas lights online
  • Make a video of your family singing a favourite song, doing a dance or just sharing holiday wishes
  • Find out what holiday tradition your community may be doing, but more safely, this year. For example, visiting with Santa by appointment only in High River or visiting the Festival of Trees in Canmore

Look online for more tips and suggestions, such as:

No matter what you choose to do, familiarize yourself with Alberta's public health restrictions before making plans.

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