It is sad to think that Thanksgiving— even Christmas will not be its cheery, joyous self this year. For many families, the holiday season with extended family and friends is canceled due to Covid. For others, they are nervous about the implications of a family gathering and are stressed for those family members who struggle with their health. Grandparents everywhere are wondering if they should see their grandchildren and family for the holidays or stay at home in solitude during the happiest time of the year.
The holiday season seems so grim, during a time when people across the country are usually in high spirits. The decision to cancel Thanksgiving and Christmas within your family is a hard one. Especially after a year full of turmoil, quarantine, and solitude already for some. I am hopeful that even with these crazy times that maybe the holiday season will turn around, and that we can all stop to be thankful for getting through this past year together.
For those who are braving the holiday season with friends and extended family. I want to wish you all the luck. I hope to have my family gatherings, but everything is still up in the air for my family, for now. I hope your holiday season is filled with love, happiness, and hope, but I also hope you stay safe and stress-free for that much needed catching up time with your family.
To help you get through Thanksgiving peacefully, I want to give you some tips and tricks on how you can make this holiday season less stressful for you and your family!
Don’t talk about politics
I know its protocol at family gatherings for a crazy Uncle or talkative Grandpa to bring up politics in a conversation. But we all know we hate when that happens. An awkward silence usually overcomes the group and then chaos erupts. After a year apart, full of pain and anguish, we should take this time with our families to just enjoy ourselves and each other. I understand the urge to correct and converse with people/family who have different opinions than myself, but I understand how lucky I am to be able to be in a room with my family during these difficult times. Therefore, leave the political talk aside, or if you dare approach the conversation, do it with respect and grace, but either way, make these moments together count.
Give yourself less responsibility
Thanksgiving is a lot: turkey, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, rolls, sweet potato casserole, ham, cranberries, pies, drinks, and stuffing. That’s a whole lot of food for a lot of people. So, don’t worry about being authentic. Split up the responsibilities of the food amongst family members, but also know it’s fine if you go to the store to pick up some pies. We don’t blame you. Pies are tough. Times are rough. Give yourself a break. Here are some bakeries around the area that have perfect, delicious pies for your Thanksgiving.
· Robinette’s Apple Haus & Winery
· Grand Traverse Pie Company
· Great Harvest Bread Co.
· Nantucket Baking Company
· Costco Bakery
· Sam’s Club Bakery
Sanitize, sanitize, sanitize
I know that usually, you think your mom is crazy when she begins to clean the entire house just for a couple of guests who might be visiting. Like why would they come into your parent’s bathroom? Why is this necessary? But this year your mom isn’t crazy. She is pretty on point. With Covid, it’s important to sanitize any necessary surfaces that are going to be touched often: door handles, tables, utensils, chairs, remotes, bathrooms, and any room that gets a lot of traffic. So, take your mom seriously this year and help her sanitize the house. Also, provide hand sanitizer around the house and take any precautions necessary for you and your family to have a safe holiday season.
Take the edge off
I am not saying that you must have a drink to get through Thanksgiving with your family. But I am saying these are high anxiety times, Thanksgiving can cause stress, and a drink wouldn’t kill you— so have one. Make it fun. Create a thanksgiving cocktail for you and your family to make together. Bond over delicious sips and put your bar area to use! I know bartending has always been a fantasy of yours, so make an excuse to be a bartender for your family and shake up some creative, delicious cocktails for your family to enjoy.
Take a moment and be thankful for people who have been constant pillars of love and support in your life. Most importantly, stay safe this holiday season!