A COVID Thanksgiving, Together but Apart
on November 13th, 2020 in Acworth Ga, Alpharetta, GA, Buckhead, COVID-19, Cumming, GA, Dunwoody, GA, Grayson, Grayson Ga. | No Comments
Thanksgiving is around the corner. Turkey and quality time with family, Thanksgiving’s Day parade and football – those are the great things to which we all can look forward. However, with the impact of the novel coronavirus, holidays and annual traditions will look different this year. As experts of senior living, we’ve got some tips on safely celebrating Thanksgiving with your senior family members.
How to Celebrate Thanksgiving Safely in the Time of COVID-19
This idea may receive some resistance from the grandparents at the beginning since it has been a long year of social distancing without quality family time. However, at least for this year, celebrating Thanksgiving virtually is the best way to keep everyone in the family safe. Though the essence of the Thanksgiving dinner table is something irreplaceable, there are still great ways to savor the cherished holiday flavors together virtually.
Designate a host who will take charge of the virtual dinner and coordinate the logistics. To make it a joined effort, request each household to make a dish, divide it into smaller portions, and drop them off at other houses if you live nearby each other. For those in senior living, assisted living or retirement communities, you may wish to check in with the facility director or manager to see if outside food can be dropped off or if they are arranging a special dinner for residents. Call your senior loved ones in advance of the dinner to help them set up their computer or tablet and ensure that the virtual call will be smooth and enjoyable for them.
The CDC considers having a small outdoor dinner with your friends and family as an activity with moderate risks. Therefore, make sure that everyone who will be attending the gathering is on the same page about COVID safe practices at the event. The practices may include:
- Wearing a mask when one is not eating or drinking
- Keeping 6-feet distance between each family
- Designating one person who will serve food for everyone while wearing a mask and gloves
- Limiting access to the area where food is prepared and handled
- Minimizing the duration of the event
- Avoiding shared utensils and other items
As inconvenient as these practices may be, they are necessary for the safety of everyone involved, especially your elderly loved one.
Heading to the local mall and hunting for Black Friday deals have become the tradition of many families in the U.S. However, this is not something that we would recommend this year. Since the coronavirus outbreak in March, many retailers and local stores have brought their sales online and made the online shopping experience as convenient as possible. Therefore, instead of taking your senior loved one to the mall on Black Friday for holiday shopping, send them an online wish list and let them know about Cyber Monday. Help them navigate the retailers’ websites and show them how to enter coupons online. Also, encourage your senior loved one to shop from vendors that they are familiar with and practice cyber safety.
During this time remember that just hearing your voice and spending time on the phone, is the next best thing to being there. Also, now is a great time to use video chat features such as zoom and facebook to “shop” online together. Get creative, the goal is not letting this time of caution ruin your holiday.
Watch Your Favorite Thanksgiving Programs Together
Though snuggling on the couch with your elderly loved one while watching football or the parade may not be an option, you can still do it uniquely this year. Platforms like Facebook allow you to host a watch party and enjoy an event or program together with your family. If there are certain movies that you and your extended family like to watch on Thanksgiving, check out Netflix Party, Amazon Prime Party, and Hulu Watch Party. Don’t forget to give your parents and grandparents a call to help them gain access to the watch party and enjoy the program with the family.
Whatever way you decide to celebrate Thanksgiving family this year, follow the regulations and guidelines from the CDC as well as your state and local government with which holiday gatherings must comply. Remember to always set health and safety for your family as a priority.
Dogwood Forest – Your Top Senior Living Facility
Just because Thanksgiving looks different this year does not mean that you cannot cherish it and create memories with your senior loved one. There are different alternatives available, and as a high-quality and caring assisted living community provider, we’re here for you. At Dogwood Forest, we always make our residents’ well-being our top priority. From our clinically-proven positive environment to wellness and life enrichment programs, we have what it takes to make your loved one feel right at home, especially during the holiday season.
For more information about our assisted living communities and services, contact us today or call us now at 770-350-7833.