The year 2020 has been special in many aspects, from battling with the pandemic of the new coronavirus to economic turmoil worldwide. Since travel became tricky and because people want to maintain proper physical distancing, celebrating holidays has gone online. If you’re wondering how to celebrate the upcoming holiday virtually with friends and family, here are a couple of useful tips.
Just a couple decades ago, conference calls were reserved mostly for business people. However, teenagers and children started using them heavily to form workgroups, as school went online. Today, it’s nothing out of the ordinary to initiate a conference call, as it’s perfect for maintaining social contact.
Speaking of socializing, dinner parties during the holidays turn every home into an open house when it came to guests. Such a scenario is highly unlikely this year but you can start a dinner conference call, rounding up the whole family or your gang. You all start dinner at the same time and then laugh online but together.
Children are the ones having the hardest time accepting epidemiological measures because they don’t understand them. In fact, your grandparents are probably thinking that Santa won’t show up this year.
To prove them wrong and to strengthen the holiday spirit when it’s needed the most, have the Santa visit in person on their tablet! Virtual Santas have been around for decades but in 2020 their role is essential.
From a pre-recorded message from the Santa to a personalized live e-visit, there is no reason for children to feel that this Christmas is any different from previous years.
Speaking of children, they spend hours playing games online. You can join the hype by creating a virtual game night all your friends could attend. From bridge and casino games to a trivia night, you are bound to have a lot of fun during the long winter nights.
The host (who chooses the game) would rotate each night/week and you could keep track of the total score. After the pandemic is over (recently, the UK got the vaccination underway), you would all get together and share a good laugh about the holidays and present the overall winner with an appropriate award.
Children just love their grandma’s Christmas cookies, as they eat them up right away. This will happen this holiday season as well but you could spice things. Just like the proposed game night, you could organize a virtual bake-off. The kids would set everything up on Google Meet, Skype, or Zoom, and you would then bake cookies simultaneously with your friends. However, the final judges would be little ones, respectively.
Unwrapping presents under the Xmas tree is the apex of the holiday season. However, you can’t do a secret Santa in person but it’s still possible to do it online. Namely, the shipping industry really took off during the pandemic, so you can send your present.
You just have to choose a present, such as a floral gift basket, then order flowers online and send them to the doorstep of the family you wish to surprise. If your present is intended for the kids, then they’ll unwrap them on Christmas morning.
Movies are an integral part of the holidays because they allow the whole family to huddle in from the TV. However, this might not be possible this year but you can still watch movies together with your friends or family.
Even if you are thousands of miles apart, you just need to tune in to the same channel at the same time. The same can be done for streaming services, although it requires a bit more coordination. Texting your friends during or after the movie night will add to the feeling you watch the movie together.
The mass at the church or simply decorating the Christmas tree are traditions that we associate with the holiday season. In fact, religious services and concerts are now streamed online. Although people cannot attend them physically, such events attract a larger crowd online.
Perhaps you are unable to decorate the tree this year with your family but you can still take part in this Christian tradition dating back to the 16th century. There is something magical about the moment the star is placed on the top of the tree.
Start a video call to watch your children and grandchildren decorate the tree together. They will ask you which decorations go where, so you’ll feel as if you were in the same room as them. In fact, you can send them in advance new decorations to go on the Xmas tree for the first time this year.
Due to the fluctuating number of COVID-19 cases, many folks will spend Christmas in quarantine. However, this doesn’t mean that should miss out on the holiday spirit (and food). If your family is staying home this holiday season, you can still cook for them, so they don’t have to order out.
Simply call a courier who will take over the food package at your doorstep and deliver it to your family just in time for dinner. If you live in the same city, then the food will still be hot if you use the right packaging, such as tinfoil.
The final countdown on December 31st is foremost a social event. However, modern technology has enabled us to be there with our loved ones even if we cannot hug them the second the clock strikes midnight.
Namely, the whole family can start a live call minutes before midnight so they count down together and see off the horrid year of 2020. Then the kids will run up to the laptop to wish their grandparents all best in 2021. You can then perhaps tell them of a hidden present you hid away with the help of their parents.
Nothing can replace spending time with your family and friends during the holiday season. For years when this is impossible, there are always ways to socialize virtually and don’t lose anything of the intimacy. From game nights to sending gifts, celebrating the holidays virtually is definitely possible.
This guest post was graciously provided by Emma Williams. Emma is a writer based in Sydney, Australia. Blogging is her way of expressing her passion for reading and sharing thoughts with people around the web.