Six Covid-Safe Things to Do this Holiday Season!

Aubree Byrom, Journalist

Junior Lita Suarez gets festive and decorates her house for the season. Decorating is just one of the many things you can do to have fun while still being safe! (Provided by Lita Suarez)

For many, Christmas usually consists of being around the whole family, traveling, and creating memories with the people they love. However, the new regulations announced on December 6th prohibit gatherings of any size; the governor’s order also calls for social distancing and only going out for essentials from now until a region’s projected ICU capacity meets or exceeds 15%

Freshman Valery Garcia told Listen UP Jags that she would just be staying home this holiday season. She stated, “The stay at home orders affect my usual plans since we won’t be able to get together with our grandparents, cousins, and aunts and uncles this year.”

Freshman Salma Caceres also said she has just been staying with family. She said the hardest thing about Covid is not being able to see her loved ones like her cousins and friends.

With the order to socially distance and stay inside, it limits the things people can do during this holiday season. Although there may be temptations to just go out and do those fun things, staying inside and complying with regulations are best for the safety and well-being of everyone.

Even though in-person things have been canceled, there are still many things that you can do while still being safe! 

Here are 6 safe things to do this holiday season:

This house is one of many that decorate for the holiday season. You can explore your own neighborhood decorations while still complying with Covid regulations. (Aubree Byrom)

1. Look at Christmas Lights

During Christmas time, a lot of people decorate their houses with Christmas lights! Some people just do the normal colorful or white lights on their house. Others go all out and decorate their whole front yard. Either way, they are both still amazing to look at. 

There are also certain events that hold drive-thru scenery that have Christmas themed decorations and lights. Some of these events are Covid safe and open during quarantine. One of these events is Santa’s Speedway in Irwindale, California. 

A great activity a lot of people do is drive around with their family, looking at these beautiful lights and decorations. Whether it is just in the neighborhood or at a drive-thru event, it is a great way to get in the Christmas spirit. Although people are supposed to social distance, driving around with just family is completely safe.

 

Seventh grader Sneha Rajkumar stated, “I love Christmas and decorating the house, especially the tree and lights. Everything feels so festive and jolly…” (Sneha Rajkumar)

2. Decorate your House

Another great way to get into the holiday spirit is by filling your own house with decorations. Whether it is just a tree or some scenery, it is always fun to take some time to make your house festive. 

Sophomore Savannah Paxia stated, “Some things I have been doing is decorating my house and spending time with family. Normally I travel but now we’re just staying at home because of the stay-at-home order to be safe.” 

There are websites that could help you with some decorating ideas and inspiration. Some websites include Pinterest, Youtube, Instagram, and Tiktok. These all have great ideas and tutorials!

Some fun ideas are creating a holiday reef, hanging Christmas lights, and making Christmas ornaments! 

 

Senior Jesus Martinez poses with Santa (aka ASB Advisor Mrs. Petruschin) on Monday, December 14th, during the after school virtual event, Santa’s Workshop. Even though you can use Zoom to go to school and attend Spirit Week events, you can also use the platform to keep in contact with relatives and friends. (Jesus Martinez)

3. Zoom with Loved Ones

Although Covid has made it very hard to see family members or friends, you don’t exactly have to be in person to talk to them. Apps like Facetime, Zoom, Google Meet, Houseparty, and many others make it possible to speak with your loved ones this holiday season.

It is still worth it to give a little love to your close family members, even though it is through a screen. Catching up with them and staying in contact with friends could always lighten up your mood. 

Valery Garcia stated, “I think the hardest thing to adjust to with Covid in swing is the [same] lonely routine that comes with online school. Some weeks feel repetitive. For example, the constant wake up, school, homework, and sleep. It definitely can be draining but being able to call and text family really helps.”

 

Pullquote Photo

I think the hardest thing to adjust to with Covid in swing is the [same] lonely routine that comes with online school. Some weeks feel repetitive. For example, the constant wake up, school, homework, and sleep. It definitely can be draining but being able to call and text family really helps.”

— Valery Garcia

 

Watch Christmas movies with some popcorn this holiday season to pass the time! (Aubree Byrom)

4. Watch Movies

While stuck inside with her family, Salma Caceres has watched movies to pass them time.

Cuddling up with friends and watching movies is always fun during the holidays. Sadly, Covid regulations have prevented it. 

Although you can’t be in the same place as your friends, you could still watch some movies via the Netflix chrome extension. This would allow you and your friends to watch the same movie at the same time. It also gives you a chat room that you could chat in during the movie. The only catch is you must all have Netflix. This is a great way to have social interaction, even if it is not in person!

 

Ever heard of Ding Dong Ditching? Well try Ding Dong Gifting instead! You can spread a little holiday cheer by leaving your friends a gift on their doorstep. (Aubree Byrom)

5. Ding Dong Gift!

A big part of Christmas is giving gifts to the people you love. This may include friends. Unfortunately, this year we cannot see each other in person to give these gifts.

However, there is another alternative. If you haven’t heard of Ding Dong Ditch, it is a game where a person rings someone’s doorbell and runs, leaving the house owners confused. Instead of that, you could put a twist. When you go up to one of your friend’s doors, leave a gift for them and ring the doorbell. It is a great way to give a gift without actually being in person and you would still be socially distancing while leaving your friends a surprise!

Junior Lita Suarez stated that she has heard of Ding Dong Gift. She said, “I think it is really helpful because it is a safe way to give to others especially in these devastating times. I have considered doing it with my friends and I would be really thankful if it happened to me as well.” 

 

Seventh grader Isabella Kuo’s whole family (besides her dad) bakes cookies. She stated, “I baked gingerbread, my younger brother baked white chocolate chip, my mom baked powdered sugar nut cookies, and my older brother baked macarons!” (Isabella Kuo)

6. Bake Holiday Treats

When it comes to Christmas, baking is one of the biggest activities there is. Baking alone is fun, but baking with some friends could be even better. 

You don’t have to be in the same place to bake with them. Instead, you could bake remotely and talk to them online. Technology allows us to contact friends and family over the internet, so let’s use it to our advantage to do more than just talk! 

Similar to baking, decorating gingerbread houses and cookies is also a fun activity to do. Adding a little competition is always great too! You could do this competition with your family or have a little rivalry with your friends over the phone. Either way, it is still a great activity that is indeed Covid safe! 

Although Christmas may not be the same this year, we could still make the best out of it safely! Happy holidays!