As a lover of all holidays and – as of five days ago – a new mom, I’ve been thinking a lot about Thanksgiving 2020 and the upcoming week. Due to COVID-19, it’s safe to say that most of us are probably altering our usual holiday plans and foregoing our time-honored holiday rituals, skipping travel and indoor gatherings with family members and friends. Unfortunately, I think it’s also safe to say that this notion probably has more than a handful of us feeling a bit low.
I know for me it’s been a bit of a struggle thinking about the holiday season and realizing that my son’s first Thanksgiving and first Christmas are going to look so different from what I had always pictured them to be. No crowding around the dining room table sharing a meal comprised of family favorites. No late-night turkey-sandwich-making gatherings followed by a second round of pie. No chance for family members to hold and feed the new baby or for Alden to bond with his grandparents, aunts and uncles.
I know for our little family, Andy and I are probably looking at a quiet day at home with – if we’re lucky – some quick hellos swapped outdoors with family members who live nearby (we’ll see what the CNY weather forecast has in store for us). And while choosing to wallowing in self-pity and disappointment is always an easy route to take, I realize that to do so would defeat the very purpose of the holiday: to give thanks and take a moment to be grateful for what we have.
Rather than getting caught up on what we’re missing this year, I wanted to write a quick list to remind myself that the devil is in the perspective. Thanksgiving 2020 may look different – but it certainly isn’t ruined. In case you, too are feeling a little low this Thanksgiving, here’s what I came up with:
20 Thanksgiving Traditions We Can All Still Enjoy During the Pandemic
- Taking time to write down what we’re thankful for.
- Taking time to share what we’re thankful for with those who matter most.
- Watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade (Yes, you can still watch the parade! Learn more here.)
- Planning a delicious Thanksgiving meal.
- Shopping for a delicious Thanksgiving meal.
- Cooking a delicious Thanksgiving meal.
- Enjoying a delicious Thanksgiving meal.
- Setting the table just so.
- Trying new recipes and enjoying new culinary adventures.
- Celebrating history and making family recipes that have been passed down through the generations.
- Sharing your favorite Thanksgiving foods (food drops at the homes of friends and family members could be fun!)
- Enjoying fall decor.
- Enjoying a glass of wine.
- Enjoying a mug of cocoa.
- Enjoying a post-meal turkey sandwich.
- Making a Thanksgiving craft.
- Calling or video chatting a friend or family member you haven’t seen in a while.
- Sleeping in.
- Enjoying a slow-paced day spent in PJs and slippers.
- Officially kicking off the Christmas season.
This Thanksgiving is bound to be weird and strange. Let’s give it our best shot to make it memorable.