Christmas Day is near and we know how excited you are to meet up with your family and friends to celebrate it together but unfortunately, the virus is not taking a holiday break, so vigilance and caution are still very much required. Having deep talks and eating with your family and relatives in one table again during this season, can at least lessen the stress we have been dealing with throughout the year but of course, doing these kinds of activities in a safer and Covid-free way as possible can give you and your guests a sigh of relief and be complacent all the time. With Christmas approaching, the UK government has set up a new rule called ‘Christmas Bubble’ wherein people will be allowed to form only three households between December 23 – 27 to meet over the festive period as part of an exclusive “bubble”. You can visit the homes of people in your Christmas bubble and stay overnight, it may be in private homes, gardens, places of worship, and public outdoor spaces. If a member of your Christmas bubble tested positive or develops a symptom during the given period or the last 48 hours of your last contact with the member, you should all need to self-isolate to prevent spreading the virus. The Christmas bubble sounds effective, right? If you are planning on creating one, here are some precautions you should follow to limit the risk.
1. Create a Covid-Free home
We should always remember that home does not mean safety. There are a lot of ways to reduce the risk of transmission indoors including frequently disinfecting touched surfaces, always wearing a mask, maintaining social distancing and as much as possible let your guests use separate bathrooms with the one you are using daily. Another way to limit the risk indoors is making your home a well-ventilated area. Ventilation is particularly important, and in well-insulated modern homes, a single open window may not be enough. As much as possible, if the get-together is happening inside your home, you should keep the doors and windows wide open so that you will be having proper airflow inside your place. If you do not want to have the idea of indoor parties, the alternative way is you can do it also outdoor. It is not quite the cozy we imagined for Christmas but it is the best possible way to prevent inhaling the air of the people you are with inside a warm and stuffy room. Always remember that outdoors are best but not risk-free, so you must still follow all safety protocols.
2. Self-isolation before Christmas
The risk is always there so you must be responsible all the time because you never know how much damage you can cost in one mistake. If you are not feeling well days before Christmas, you must obviously stay at home and isolate yourself for at least 10-14 days to prevent the spreading. But to reduce the risk of asymptomatic coronavirus transmission, you should consider self-quarantining in the run-up to Christmas just to make sure everyone is safe. During the quarantine period, you must observe yourself if you are experiencing symptoms or you can just take the Covid test for assurance and try to avoid meeting up with everyone at once because you didn’t know if one of you is carrying the virus and it will take a domino effect, making it difficult to trace and stop the spreading. Also, make sure that all your guests are fully vaccinated at the time they will be in your house.
3. Bring your own cutlery
Did you know that the SARS-COV-2 can last up to 3-7 days on metal surfaces such as door handles, keys, cutlery, refrigerators, and pans? Imagine letting your guests use your cutleries and taking the risk that the virus may live on the surface for at least 7 days. Not only you can be in danger but also your family’s health, so make it a rule and inform your guest ahead of time that they will be needing to bring their own cutleries for them to enjoy the food. You can also prepare some disposable spoons and forks for those guests that didn’t receive the memo but you must dispose of it once used.
4. Observe Table Manners
Eating with our loved ones, we cannot resist not talking with them while enjoying the foods, but we must always remember the table etiquette because it helps to limit the risk of spreading the virus. If it is possible, prepare your dining table with physical distancing with each other or you can just provide a table for each household. Avoid using loudspeakers or playing loud music to prevent people from raising their voices and emitting more droplets from their mouths. Your guest should always understand the precautions you are setting up inside your home and you must be polite to say no. We know it is difficult to push away someone you love if they approach you for a hug. Try to frame your saying ‘no’ as an offer rather than a rejection, for example, instead of saying “Don’t come near me”, it is more polite to say “Shall I keep my distance so that I don’t infect you?” We completely understand that removing of the mask in the dining table is necessary but it doesn’t mean that you will have the authority to risk someone else’s health, so you must follow still the protocols by covering your mouth with your hand while speaking or distancing yourself to the person beside you.
5. Consider setting up a Virtual Christmas Gathering
We all hate to cancel events like Christmas gatherings but there are many alternative ways to push through this kind of event such as doing it virtually. Having a virtual party is the best ideal plan for a safer and budget-friendly get-together. No physical interactions together, no hassle of going to the supermarkets, no need to choose what to wear and what to prepare for the meal. All you need is just a good internet connection and be in the coziest place in your home and enjoy having a conversation with your family. You may not see them personally, but just think of the risk they will encounter if your guest will come to your house for dinner. It is better to stay at home and enjoy being safe with your family.
Christmas is the most-awaited season of the year because of the family bonding, gifts, and the smell of the good foods being served during Christmas Eve. However, the best way to end the year is to have a healthy and complete family, so be responsible at all times and never be accountable for someone else’s health risk. Bria Homes Family is wishing you a Merry Christmas!
Written by Eara Aringo