2020 has been a doozy of a year, and children have had little to look forward to through this pandemic. Many Christmas traditions will be cancelled this year, as well.
There are always your standard Christmas traditions – baking together, watching Christmas movies, decorating the tree – those mostly remain intact. But big family dinners, Yankee swaps, and trips to The Nutcracker or Radio City Music Hall’s Christmas Spectacular will have to wait until at least 2021.
But with a little craft and creativity, there are still plenty of ways to bring a little extra Christmas magic to your children’s holiday.
Read on for three new (and one old!) Christmas traditions to add to your plans!
Caroling – Sure, we’re all familiar with Christmas carols, but have you ever actually bundled up and gone caroling? In 2017, only about 17% of people reported caroling… but in the age of social distancing, what better way to get in the spirit?
Dress up warm, grab a thermos of something hot, and round up the members of your household for a winter stroll through the neighborhood! (If you’re at all nervous that your neighbors may not appreciate your wassailing, you can limit your map to include only your friends and family who live nearby.)
The best part about caroling is that it’s done outside in the fresh air, at a safe distance! To help keep this activity as safe as possible, make sure you’re only traveling with members of your household, and definitely wear a mask – singing has been shown to propel germs further than talking can!
Secret Santa – Distance learning has left so many little ones isolated from their peers. Bring some joy to a friend’s day by putting together a little gift bag (candy, small toys, and maybe a handwritten letter or a picture your kiddo drew) and leaving it on their doorstep! It’s a fun, unexpected, safe way to remind their friends that they are loved and remembered this holiday season.
Zoom or FaceTime Grandma and Grandpa! – It’s no secret that the elderly population is at higher risk for COVID-19, a fact that means many grandparents will be spending their holiday alone this year – but being alone doesn’t need to be lonely! Thanks to technology, distance no longer mean your kiddos will have to miss out on Gramps’s yearly reading of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas – or whatever other story your family favors.
The fun doesn’t need to stop there! Why not crank up the tunes and sing some songs together, watch a movie, or even open gifts together on Christmas morning? Facebook Messenger even has fun filters, effects, games you can play together!
Christmas Lights, Christmas Lights, Christmas Lights! Whether you choose to decorate your own home à la Clark Griswold or you prefer to grab some hot cocoa and pack the kiddos in the car, visiting your neighborhood light displays is an undeniably magical way to celebrate the season. Since you never leave the car, there’s no risk involved, either. A perfect safe outing that Coronavirus can’t touch!
To find the best of the best when it comes to dancing light displays, check out your local community Facebook groups– Christmas Lights in Southern New Hampshire is a great resource for the New Hampshire area, for example. Sometimes large parks, race tracks, and stadiums set up large, drive-through light displays, too, but those will cost you an entry fee.
You can keep your lightshow watching fairly simple and drive yourself, or you can go all out and rent a limousine to drive you and your family around in style!
These are only a few examples of ways you can squeeze extra bits of holiday magic out of the season. Have you tried any of these yourself, or does your family have other “COVID-proof” traditions? Let us know in the comments!