Long-distance celebrating in 2020

Enjoy the holidays during the pandemic

Holidays are important to everyone. This rest and joy period marks a special moment for each family, group of friends or community. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed things this year. Now, you have to be much more creative when planning meetings to be together, even remotely.

There are no reasons why we can't keep our Christmas traditions alive. You just have to let your imagination fly to find the perfect ways to share and celebrate from afar, remembering that we have technology in our favor and that we can make the most of it to make our Christmas a beautiful time. Here you can find some ideas!

Cook a virtual meal.

There cannot be a celebration without delicious food. Sitting at the table with loved ones during a meal is one of the holidays' prevailing traditions. But doing it this year seems increasingly difficult. For that reason, we advise you to organize a virtual meal on the day of the Christmas Eve dinner.

You can also exchange recipes with your family or friends and prepare them at the same time, sharing their experience by video call. You only have to place a laptop, cell phone, or device with a camera at the end of the table. You can use tools like Skype, Zoom, Face time, or any other application to connect with other people. It will be a lovely moment!

Sign up for acts of service together.

Christmas is the season of gratitude, and there is no better way to show your appreciation for other people and your own blessings than by helping others. If you are separated by distance this holiday season, you can try connecting through a service or volunteer program.

You can also start your own initiative with friends or among your family to build the common good this year. You can make donations or develop your own group of volunteers. The areas that usually need help are food banks, hospitals, community organizations that serve at-risk populations, and hurricane or wildfire relief efforts groups.

Prune and decorate a tree outdoors.

In cities with less risk of infection, authorities have allowed small group gatherings outdoors. If you have this benefit, you can make the most of it and organize a meeting in your garden. It is the perfect time to go overboard with your decorations a bit and take them outside. You can decorate an outdoor Christmas tree or prune a real tree and add LED lights and unbreakable decorations.

We have to take care of ourselves and comply with the restrictions, but the parties do not have to be boring. They can also dine outside, have a Christmas picnic -remembering that it is vital to maintain social distancing- and even play some traditional games. Santa can leave presents outside this year too!

Host a Christmas movie night.

Christmas movies are part of Christmas traditions too, and thanks to technology, it is possible to watch them in a group without being physically together. It can be as simple as playing the movie while being on the phone with that person or as comprehensive as having a shared screen on a video call. In either case, you can enjoy the beautiful experience of watching a movie with someone.

Also, if you and your loved one are in the same city and the weather is nice, you can host your outdoor movie night. You can use a projector so that both of you can respect social distancing while sharing a special moment and enjoying each other's company.

Games, tournaments, and contests.

Many families often have tournaments and contests during Christmas, and this is a tradition that can be easily adapted to the virtual age. You can organize a competition among your friends and family about Christmas carol charades or Christmas movies and keep the score from afar on an online game night.

You can also challenge who makes the best Christmas dish and select a jury -with one member at each location- to taste each of them and meet virtually to choose which is the most delicious. And the awards can be very creative and original, like a virtual or best chef virtual certification.

Do a gift exchange by mail.

Holidays are also a time when people often exchange gifts for each other. If you usually participate in such activities or organize gift exchanges as a Secret Santa, you may consider making a current and varied version. Instead of meeting with people as is typical, you can send the gifts by mail.

Secret Santa by mail can work quite well as you can keep gifts a secret if you wish. Or, if you prefer, you can also buy individual gifts for each of your group of friends or family and send one to each.

Send Christmas cards.

Christmas cards are also part of the most popular holiday traditions and never go out of style. If you are away from your family, you should consider sending them a festive card with a beautiful message. You can also take advantage of digitization to make a virtual version and send it by email.

And remember that cards are the most versatile gifts out there. You can personalize them in many ways, add illustrations with Christmas figures, use various fonts for funny messages, or whatever you want. You just have to let your imagination run wild to get beautiful creations!

Read Christmas books.

Books are an excellent alternative to Christmas movies. There are festive-themed titles that tell beautiful stories about Christmas experiences, iconic characters like Santa Claus, or are even about the traditions of different countries throughout the world. All family members or groups of friends can choose a book and read it simultaneously and then comment on it.

If you have children, you can let them choose a book and read it while you cook dinner or while they eat some Christmas snacks. In addition to spending beautiful moments, they will get all the benefits of reading.

As you can see, there are many activities that you can do at Christmas even if you have to long-distance celebrate due to the COVID-19 pandemic. You just have to be creative and talk to your friends or family to organize unique and charming virtual events!