It can seem increasingly difficult to be optimistic these days with Coronavirus cases skyrocketing in most areas of the country, as well as an endless cycle of news stories detailing the bleak and dismal days ahead. Winter is here (at least for much of the Upper Midwest) and it is time we spread not only critical information on how to stay safe and stop the spread of COVID-19, but how to actually enjoy yourself while being a responsible and conscientious citizen.
Believe it or not, there is an exhaustive list of options for safe, and fun, winter activities. The holiday season is upon us, and it is causing many to think about what will not be this year in regards to traditions and time with loved ones. Let’s rework that narrative, shall we? This holiday season, really embrace your chance to create new memories and traditions, ones that can remain a cherished highlight of an otherwise trying time.
Food has the ability to transport us; to a time, a place, or a moment. During these current times that certainly make us feel closed-in, open up to remaking old memories/traditions. Pull out and dust off the recipe book that has been sitting more as an adornment on your shelf than for its practical usage. Share new special moments by bringing out an old recipe and making it solo at home or another member of your immediate household. Need ideas? The Food Network has done the work for us and compiled a ton of fun and comforting recipes, from Slow-Roasted Pork with Citrus and Garlic to a warming Spiked Mexican Hot Chocolate, you are sure to remain entertained in the kitchen for the coming months!
Director of the Harvard Global Health Institute, Ashish Jha, echoed in an interview with The Atlantic what we have been hearing for months. “We know that the biggest risk of spread for this virus is when meaningful numbers of people gather indoors for any extended period of time,” Jha said. “Also, people are already feeling pandemic fatigue, and I think that’ll only get worse.” One way to fight pandemic fatigue is to reboot your imagination. At the beginning of the pandemic, couples, families, and roommates were having a blast crafting, baking, and playing board games. Once that list was crossed out, people were left saying, “Now what?”
Remember how fun it was to waste away an afternoon building a fort, spending hours reveling in your architectural genius? You are never too old to let creativity flow, no matter what the method. USA Today has some (extra) ideas for you to stay entertained while in the comfort of your own home.
It is time to become mesmerized by the beauty of winter again. The outdoors have been a refuge for many over the past eight months, and that does not have to change with the seasons. Although the weather of the midwest can be unpredictable, and let’s admit it, at times intolerable, there are plenty of ways to enjoy yourself outdoors. Bloomberg put the question of Winter 2020 quite plainly: What if instead of scolding people for their social needs, we got understanding, and then we got creative? Freelance writer and photographer, Josh Laskin, put together a great guide to give you some inspiration.
Pandemic fatigue is wearing away at us all. However, as has been said time and time again, just because we are sick of the virus, doesn’t mean the virus is sick of us. Now, more than ever, we need to remain vigilant in our personal mitigation efforts, and learn how to balance that with our self-care and inherent need for social connection.