Most of the time it can be really nice to stay home for the holidays, or even to host your families and friends near and far. Sometimes, in apartment complexes, people can feel a little cramped or crowded, but if you live at White Oak Grove Apartments in Asheville, you know that’s not going to be a problem. Staying home for the holidays, however, can seem to take on a more ominous tone when you’re doing it because of restrictions and recommendations required by the concern of a pandemic. When we all started washing our hands more, stopped touching our faces and started investing in basic PPE to wear regularly out in public at the start of the Covid-19 spread, probably none of us thought it would impact our Thanksgiving or other holiday plans.
Yet, here we are, and there’s no greater bunch of people who know how to pull up their bootstraps and approach challenges positively than the American public. Within a few months we’ve gone from a society who wouldn’t think about wearing a face mask in public, generally, to one that keeps extras in our cars, purses, backpacks, briefcases and gets the importance of wearing them. We even go above and beyond: some cities make noise at prescribed times to honor healthcare workers, in others, people howl for those we’ve lost and for those we are so grateful to still hold dear. Communities sent pizzas and salads and finger foods to local hospitals for doctors and nurses and EMTs and everyone else to have plenty to eat while working crazy long shifts. Moms and Dads figured out, on the fly, how to be teacher’s helpers and sometimes teachers themselves as their kids began virtual learning. And if you’re a resident at White Oak Grove Apartments in Asheville, you have plenty of room and modern conveniences for enjoying your (small) holiday celebration anyway. Sure, they’re all the same great amenities you’ve come to know and love, like granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, and in-unit washers and dryers, but these premium perks do make the holidays a little more special. What else can you do to make the holidays special, and safe, this year if you’re hosting or attending a small celebration in or outside of your home?
Try eating completely different foods. If your family is wed to turkey or ham and mashed potatoes, so be it, but this could be the year you had a sushi feast for Thanksgiving.
Figure out the ground rules for general safety: if you are inviting anyone over who is outside of your immediate household, make sure that everyone wears a mask with two or more layers, maintains social distancing of 6’ (2m) or more, wash your hands frequently and provide lots of sanitizer in multiple, easy-to-find locations for your guests. Once you’ve figured out your rules, let anyone know who might be coming over so that everything is very clear before the festivities start.
Play games or sports that are fun but keep you largely out of contact with other people. Think small rounds of badminton or volleyball, H-O-R-S-E, charades, karaoke, Battleship and the like. Video games can also be great. Just remember to thoroughly disinfect your hands as well as anything that might get touched by more than one person, like microphones and basketballs.
Have a small outdoor meal instead of staying inside. Obviously, this is fairly weather-dependent, but if you do have to eat inside, open windows and turn on fans as much as possible to increase airflow.
If possible, bring your own food, drinks, plates, cups and utensils.
Watch Thanksgiving Day parades, sports and movies at home.
If sharing food, have one person serving the food. Keep as many people out of the food preparation area as possible. If you want to help, ask the host if they need assistance instead of just jumping in.
Use single-use condiments (like salad dressing packets) and disposable plates and utensils.
Create a gratitude activity for you and your loved ones. It can be as simple as writing down what you’re grateful for or saying what you are grateful for. If writing, place everyone’s gratitude paper in a box, pass it around and read them and try to guess whose is whose.
Have a virtual meal over a social media platform like Facebook or a videoconferencing platform like Zoom instead of having people from outside of your home over. You can still enjoy each others’ company and stay as safe as possible.
And as always, if you’re going to be looking for a new home for the holidays, we invite you to contact us at White Oak Grove Apartments and see what we’ve got in store for you. A new home in one of our premium apartments might be the best holiday gift you can give yourself. From all of us at White Oak Grove Apartments, stay safe and we hope to hear from you soon.