Safe Ways to Celebrate Christmas in 2020


The winter holidays are upon us, but this year, the pandemic has made family gatherings more difficult and potentially unsafe. How can we celebrate without increasing the risk of COVID-19?

As the old song goes, “there’s no place like home for the holidays.”

Celebrating Christmas in 2020

Think back to the stories that you tell over and over – for many, these stories are memories of the things that went wrong, and the simple joys of making the best of a bad situation. This exceptional holiday season will probably be more memorable because it’s so different.

Read on to find out how you can make the most of this holiday season so that it stands out, giving you stories to retell for years to come.

Trim a Tree Outdoors:

Holiday decorations

Spruce up the outdoors with seasonal decorations.  Since you might be spending more time outdoors than normal, this is the year to go overboard, decking out your balcony or yard!  Adorn an outdoor tree or potted evergreen with LED lights and shatterproof ornaments. If you don’t have a tree, hang garlands and bows, or add colourful dogwood branches to planters.

Tip: Use twist ties or florist’s wire to secure the ornaments to the tree, so they’ll stay put even in a stiff wind.

Driving Lights:

You may have noticed the proliferation of drive-through Christmas light tunnels around town, with thousands of colourful winking lights and holiday displays that you enjoy while creeping forward in your car as Christmas music plays on the radio. Click here to see a list of Magical Drive-Through Christmas Light Displays Across Canada.

Stream Holiday Performances:

Many holiday theater classics, from “A Christmas Carol” to Handel’s “Messiah,” are adapting to the times and will be available to stream this holiday. The National Ballet of Canada and The Royal Winnipeg Ballet are taking “The Nutcracker” virtual this year as well. Which means, yes, you can finally dance along with the “Sugar Plum Fairy” and no one has to know.

A free filmed version of the “Sing-Along Messiah,” recorded at Koerner Hall in 2010, will begin streaming on YouTube beginning Dec. 17. There will be “no bouncing ball” to follow along, but you can download sheet music from the Tafelmusik website to join the choir from home.   Follow the links to go directly to the sites!

Celebrate the Holidays Around the World… At Home:

Inject some sparkle into this winter with traditions from around the world. Educate your family and friends on Krampus in Central Europe, Mari Lwyd in Wales, 13 Yule Lads in Iceland, Sinterklaas in The Netherlands, and more. Celebrate these other traditions by cooking or baking traditional foods and making crafts associated with those international events.

And yes, this can include the Christmas tradition of eating Kentucky Fried Chicken in Japan.

Track Santa Claus:

Relive your childhood this year because Santa Claus is coming to town, and you can find out what his ETA is this Christmas Eve.

The NORAD Santa Tracker is preparing for its 65th year of tracking Santa’s route across the globe, so that the young and young-at-heart will know exactly when jolly Saint Nick will shimmy down their chimney.

Their website offers up a live stream of Santa’s flight, in addition to various online games and a virtual exploration of the North Pole.

Bah!” said Scrooge, “Humbug!” “Merry Christmas! What right have you to be merry?”

“Come, then,” returned the nephew gaily. “What right have you to be dismal? What reason have you to be morose? You’re rich enough.”

Spread Holiday Love:


Although we may not be able to gather with extended family and friends this year, we can be more imaginative about sharing holiday spirit near and far during COVID-19. Brighten someone’s day by sending colourful seasonal flowers, a holiday cake, holiday cards, artwork, a pre-recorded holiday song or message, or treasured photos from holidays past.


Gift and Food Drives:Cards

Tis the season to stay calm and give back! From sponsoring a family in need to Big Boys and Girls, the options are endless – especially this year. If you want to give food, you can drop it off at your local food bank, at a donation point in supermarkets across the country, or church.

Why not let your heart swell 3 sizes this year by helping someone less fortunate?  The holidays can be difficult for many people, most especially seniors and this year is bound to be even more challenging.  Read here how you can help a seniors feel less lonely over the holidays.

Keep Up with Traditions from a Distance:

You can still take part in your favourite traditions from far away. As long as you have an internet connection, you can organize digital get-togethers while sitting in your living room.

So, if you always bake cookies with the grandkids at this time of year, make your own batches of cookies over video chat. If you always have a holiday feast, talk to your relatives about hosting a virtual dinner party over video-conferencing apps. You can chat with the whole family, and you don’t even have to share your dessert!

What All Seniors Care Is Up to:

There is always something exciting happening at All Seniors Care, especially during the holidays. If you’re curious about sensational activities that we are planning at our residences this year, visit our Facebook pages for updates and Instagram for pictures.

If you need some holiday cheer, click here to watch our Life Is Good video series and see what some of our residents are grateful to have in their lives. You might find that you share the same blessings.

Things are going to be a little different this year, but “there are a lot of thins you can enjoy in life.”

Shaftesbury Park

Author:    Julianna McLeod

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