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Making Christmas Special

How to make this Christmas special even when families can’t be together

Making Christmas Special
Photo by Rodion Kutsaev on Unsplash

We all know how rough this year has been, but that doesn’t mean Christmas isn’t just as special. Families and friend won’t be Ake to gather like we have in the past, but let’s take this opportunity to be thankful for what we all have and not a grinch about what we don’t get for Christmas this year.

Some of you might be thinking that Christmas is “ruined” but in fact this is amazing chance to make someone else’s life feel special and cared for. Even though you can’t see your family, friends, and loved ones, here are some ideas to help stay connected and experience a new way to celebrate without being “together”.

My family is divided between Dayton and Cincinnati Ohio. The north group (Dayton) and the south group (Cincinnati) have decided to not gather because of a few family members who are exposed to the public more than other and those in my family who are seniors who shouldn’t have second hand exporsure, just in case. However, that’s not stopping us from having a Merry Christmas. Christmas Eve we’re sending one person from each group to meet half way and exchange gifts, food, cookies and Merry Wishes as we then take those blessings and do a virtual gift opening via Zoom. Zoom has become so handy when we can’t see our family in person and helps us share my special moments in a way that’s safe and memorable.

For those in each group, we’re making and decorating Christmas cookies. My job this year was to bake cut-out Christmas cookies; some to send to the north group for my youngest cousin and some to bring to my parents house to share with my other two cousins in the south group. “Together” we’ll have the chance to decorate those cookies as a family and have fun watching each other make messes and sneak a cookie when no one is looking.

The morning of Christmas Eve began the baking. My boyfriend brought me breakfast and we set out making the best cut out sugar cookies we could find... (thanks Betty Crocker).

In their homes, my aunt and grandma began their journey to create the best packed Grandma Breakfast they could do. My great grandma used to make the best biscuits and gravy, and the tradition of having a grandma breakfast on Christmas morning hasn’t ceased; 2020 isn’t stopping that. Biscuits, gravy, eggs, bacon and so many more things are in the works. I received the below picture from my mom as well as she’s also pitching in to make breakfast. I can smell the biscuits.... mmm delicious.

Christmas trees, oranaments, holly, oh my! So many cookies! What makes this special is the thought put into making it special for my cousins who couldn’t all be together this year; also the aunts and uncles and grandparents who get to be a kid of a few minutes and help with the mess.

This Christmas, I ask those who come across this to think of something special to do for your family... friends... neighbors... coworkers to make this year feel less lonely and more cheerful. Jesus gave us the greatest gift of all and the least we can do is give selfless gifts in return because of it. Although we’re apart there is still hope and joy and peace whether it feels like it or not. I wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year. Peace to all, and to all a goodnight.

extended family
Sara Aulds
Sara Aulds
Read next: Understanding the Effects of Addiction on the Family
Sara Aulds

I am a photographer and videographer from Cincinnati, Ohio. I write as a hobby and capture reality as a profession.

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