Typically around this time of year, everyone is preparing for the holidays. It’s a time for thanksgiving as you spend time with those you love most. Only this year, things are very different. With the coronavirus pandemic continuing to plague countries worldwide, health and safety must remain a priority. Not wanting to put your friends and family at risk or cancel your plans, you might be wondering how you can host a safe yet fun holiday gathering during the pandemic. Continue reading to learn more.
1. Keep It Small
Gathering in large crowds during a pandemic isn’t safe for anyone. While you may want to host a big event, it’s best to keep it to just a few close relatives and friends. If you’re having trouble deciding on who should attend, you can cross off guests that are at the highest risk of contracting and suffering seriously from the coronavirus. Asking those from hardest-hit states to remain at home may also be ideal.
2. Host It Outdoors
If you’re fortunate enough to live in an area where the holidays are relatively warm, you can always host your holiday gathering outdoors. The fresh air and open space reduce everyone’s risks. Backyards complete with outdoor kitchen cabinets, stainless steel appliances, and a comfortable seating area make the perfect setting for a late fall or early winter gathering.
All you need is a lovely family-size table, a few chairs, some landscape lights, and a beautiful table setting for everything to come together.
3. Skip the Buffet
It’s not uncommon for hosts to allow guests to serve themselves at mealtime. Unfortunately, that’s not ideal during a pandemic. For starters, leaving the food exposed can increase the risk of contamination. You also don’t want too many hands to touch the food, serving trays, and utensils. While it does mean extra work for you, you should skip the buffet this year. Instead, designate one or two people wearing gloves and masks to serve each person their food.
4. Go Disposable
Here’s a relief for those hosting family gatherings this holiday season - you can use disposable plates, cups, napkins, and utensils and find ones that are bio-degradable to stay as close to zero-waste living as possible, even while using disposables. It will save you a lot of time during cleanup. It also keeps you and your guests safe. Though your good china will remain in the cupboard collecting dust, you can find some suitable yet trendy disposable products at your local grocery or department store. You can purchase items with festive designs to match the rest of your decor.
5. Stock up on PPE
It might seem a bit weird wearing a face mask in front of friends and family, but it’s for everyone’s health and safety. Before your holiday gathering, ensure that you have enough PPE to go around. You can purchase disposable masks or gift everyone with uniquely designed cloth masks that they can have as a keepsake. Request that everyone wear a mask while indoors or when sitting near others.
6. Sanitize Regularly
Another way to ensure your family gathering this holiday remains safe is to regularly sanitize all common areas and hard surfaces. Keep disinfectant spray, paper towels, or rags nearby to remove any coronavirus presence from your home.
7. Prep Your Restrooms
Proper handwashing hygiene is vital to everyone’s health and safety. Therefore, you want to ensure that your bathroom is fully stocked with things your guests need to reduce risks. Before your event, place soap, hand sanitizer, and paper towels in the restroom. You’ll also want to sanitize the bathroom frequently throughout the day. Though handwashing should be a common practice, you may want to post signs to provide a friendly reminder of the significance.
The coronavirus pandemic may have presented some challenges for the upcoming holiday season, but that doesn’t mean you can’t spend it with the ones you love. If you were planning on hosting a family gathering this year, it could be done safely. As long as you keep the advice discussed above in mind while making arrangements, you can keep everyone safe while having a good time with the ones you love.