Heimlich Heroes Blog


Dec 01, 2020

Heimlich Heroes™: Staying Positive During COVID-19, Part 2

Celebrate this (Un)Usual holiday—Together (and Virtually)

There is no denying that this holiday season is strange and different. The CDC urges us to modify holiday plans and reduce the spread of COVID-19. Let’s keep our friends, families, and communities healthy and safe. (Perhaps the best gift of all.)



How and where to celebrate the holidays depend on the risk and comfort of each person. First, talk through your holiday plans with family and friends. Together you can assess risk and decide how to best promote safety and participation. Here are questions to ask:

  • Could friends and relatives (especially those high-risk) participate virtually, i.e., through Facebook Messenger, Zoom, Skype, Teams or Google Meet?
  • Should we keep our gathering small?
  • To better accommodate social distancing, could we hold our event at a different location or outdoors?
  • Are there ways to limit contact between attendees?
  • Does everyone agree with the steps to promote safety?
  • Will family and friends stick to the agreed-upon safety plans?

Planning ahead is especially important for children with anxiety around COVID. Anxious kids can be comforted knowing you’ve made careful plans. Help kids out with things to say in certain situations: “Mom says I can’t hug you this year, but here’s a high-five wave!”


Keep the Spirit of Safety and Joy

Whether decorating the Christmas tree, lighting a menorah, or celebrating Kwanza, think about those traditions that matter most to you. Even though you’re celebrating differently, preserve holiday traditions like decorating or making traditional holiday foods. What else, you may ask?

  • Shop and ship early. Online shopping will be especially busy this year. So, shop and send gifts early, ensuring on-time arrival.
  • Trim an outdoor tree. Brighten up your entire neighborhood!
  • Make new memories. Do a daily reading together. Create an advent calendar with daily festive activities instead of treats. Simple memories could be watching holiday movies and making hot chocolate.
  • Build out your card list. This year, above all years, extend your holiday card list to others you’ve not been able to regularly see. Especially remember those who are isolated and house-bound.
  • Share your favorite recipes. You could even have a virtual get-together to plan holiday meals and swap recipes.
  • Spread joy. Remember those less fortunate; those in nursing homes, homeless shelters, and hospitals; and those who serve, like nurses and first responders.

Remember, there are risks in traveling, as well. If you do gather together, limit the size of your group and keep visits short. Ensure people wear masks. Maintain a distance of at least six feet. And, of course, wash your hands!


Celebrate What’s Important

If this year has taught us anything, it is that we’re grateful for what we have and the people who mean the most to us. Now is a time of gratitude—connecting and celebrating one another.

Wishing you a happy and safe holiday from everyone at Heimlich Heroes™!