Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Preparing for a very Covid Christmas

2020 can’t end soon enough. What an absolutely craptastic year it’s been, ending in another solitary holiday for Tom and me.

Fortunately, all four of our children are happily partnered and cohabitating, some even with a new Covid puppy, so no one will be spending Christmas alone. THAT would be heartbreaking.

Just as we spent Thanksgiving alone, Tom and I will also be spending Christmas alone. It’s simply too dangerous now, with Covid numbers surging to unprecedented levels in every corner of the country, including our little upper left-hand corner. Vaccines are being distributed now, but only to frontline health workers. Shannon, a nurse at Virginia Mason, will receive her first dose on Christmas Eve and Elisabeth, a nurse anesthetist at UW will receive her first dose on December 30th. But we don’t know yet whether that vaccine also protects those the recipient comes in contact with. Until we know the answer to that question, we just can’t risk seeing our kids and their families without being masked and outside, where we can socially distance.

So that’s what we did last weekend! We met outside at Elisabeth and Danny’s new house in Sammamish. Our assumption was that we’d meet under their covered front porch (it is December in the Pacific Northwest, after all)…

(Look at the sky. This photo was NOT taken this month. Duh.)

But the weather cooperated and we were able to meet in the fenced  backyard. This was especially good news for the four dogs (two of them, puppies), as well as the one toddler in attendance.



Coincidentally-on-purpose, it was also someone’s “Medicare birthday”! How did that happen?! Tom and I met when we were barely 19 and 20. The thought back then of us ever actually being OLD was just… well, pretty unfathomable. And yet, here we are!


Something from “the olden days” is back, though. Tom had relatively long hair when we were dating…


I think he’s trying to relive his youth with what he calls his “Pandemic hair”! A little grayer and not as “coiffed,” but equally as handsome.


It was so good to see our kids with their significant others and fur babies!

Alex and Erin, with Misha…


…who loved the cold waterfall!


Peter and Shannon with (camouflaged) Masta-dor (Mastiff-Labrador) pupper, Chessa…


… who ran around acting like she was already 130 pounds and tall as a horse! (Give her another month or two…!)


And the Markus family, with Grace (who IS actually as tall as a small horse) and sweet Santa-Baby Leo…

IMG_7942…who I wanted so badly to snuggle! I mean, look at this adorable little Christmas elf!



Kat and Ian are quarantining at their home in San Francisco. The plan had been for them to drive up to Seattle in their new camper, but obviously that’s not gonna happen. Sad smile We were able to FaceTime with them, though which, for this year, will have to suffice. But oh, how I miss them! It might be that the next time we see them will be at their wedding!

This Covid fiasco has changed everything. Who would have thought that families who normally gather for the holidays would need to stay home? But I think there’s actually an upside to this Christmas celebration apart, at least for our family: each couple is going to be alone this year, freeing them to establish some tradition, big or small, that will persist long past the end of the pandemic, when they’ll remind each other, ‘Remember when this tradition began…?’

And that will have to suffice as the upside to a very Covid Christmas.

















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Margaret said...

I'm trying not to be bitter about this Covid Christmas. My kids were here in 2019, and I was supposed to be in New York right now. It really does hurt. :( I would have loved to have spent the time (or even seen) my grandson.

Tonya said...

Our small family (5 of us) have made the decision to get together. I was prepared (somewhat) for that to not be the case, but I'm abiding by the Navy's orders, and they have OK'd family visits within the state. And I'm taking it. With some guilt. But, we have ALL been careful and sensible, so there is that. We all did stay apart at Thanksgiving, and that was fine, but THIS feels so special, albeit a little scary. It is pretty easy here to be 6 feet apart, though. And maybe the weather will be dry enough to spend some time outside, all bundled up. I hope.

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