people gathering outside with masks on

For Small Gatherings

Unfortunately, living safely with Covid-19 has become a way of life in 2021. Fortunately vaccine rates are rising but the Delta strain is also running rampant as well. The CDC has not changed their guidance much from last Christmas. They still recommend celebrating virtually or with your immediate family, or holding outside gatherings. But there are ways to hold gatherings and still be safe from infection. Here are some of their recommendations for having a safe Christmas with family and friends in the time of Covid.

Wear your mask

This one is a no-brainer. All guests should wear masks. And you can make it fun. Maybe have an ugly mask contest. After all, masks have become the fashion accessory of 2020. And while eating, keep your social distance and make sure you store your mask in a safe place, away from others. They recommend a paper or mesh fabric bag. They also recommend discouraging guests from singing or shouting. This is the perfect excuse to keep Uncle Bob from his long-winded political diatribes.

Keep it outdoors

This, of course is the most ideal situation, but sometimes the weather can wreak havoc on even the most well laid plans. If you can’t socialize outdoors, the CDC recommends increasing ventilation by opening windows or keeping the air or heat on continuous circulation.

Have plenty of soap and hand sanitizer available

And encourage your guests to bring their own if they can and wash their hands regularly. Be sure to keep the bathroom stocked with hand soap and disposable / single use towels. And clean and disinfect commonly touched surfaces often. Lysol wipes (Amazon, 75 count, $13.80) are great for quick wipe-downs.

Prepare and serve food safely

While their top recommendation is to have guest bring their own food to eat, there are still ways to prepare and serve food safely. Have one person, who is wearing a mask, prepare all the food, and keep guests from going in and out of the food preparation area. Also have one masked person serve all the food to avoid multiple people using the same serving utensils. It seems potluck-style dining is a thing of the past for now.

While Covid-19 may have put a damper on the company Christmas party or the large family feasts we are all used too, it’s possible to have a small, safe Christmas gathering this year if you follow the CDC recommendations. Read the full list of CDC Holiday Safety Tips HERE.

Have a happy and safe holiday!

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