As I started working on this blog post, I saw a news article reporting a spike in Covid-19 infections after the celebration of Canadian Thanksgiving (on October 12). Obviously, it would be good to avoid a similar outcome after U.S. Thanksgiving. And that means strict limitation of travel and gatherings, especially since by November 26th, it’s unlikely that outdoor celebrations will be a good choice in most of the country.
The first step is deciding how you want to celebrate. Of course, you can have a traditional Thanksgiving dinner with those you have been with since the beginning of the pandemic restrictions. For that sort of celebration, you can plan as usual, maybe making less food since you won’t be having guests.
If you usually go to a restaurant or to someone else’s house for dinner, you will likely have to make your own dinner plans. Many restaurants and grocery stores are offering pre-made dinners for pickup and reheating. On the other hand, some folks have decided to do something completely different from the usual Thanksgiving dinner, reasoning that having turkey and the fixings will just make the difference to a normal Thanksgiving all the more painful. They are planning a meal of favorite comfort foods.
But food isn’t the only Thanksgiving tradition. You might want to plan a video chat with the folks you would usually have been with. A pre-dinner chat to share what you are thankful for this year might be a way to make the day better. Alternatively, some time for silent reflection and journaling might be a better choice for you.
I know that I will miss the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade. I do love to watch Santa arrive! There will likely be football for those who enjoy watching it. Or you could do a movie marathon of family favorites. And, if the weather allows, a long walk outside is safe and healthy – even when there isn’t a pandemic!
You may discover that a less hectic holiday, without the travel and Black Friday shopping, actually allows you to focus on the meaning of the day.