Thanksgiving and Pandemic Tips for Simple Living

family time Nov 25, 2020

What a Pandemic Can Teach You About Simple Living 

With the Thanksgiving holiday here, many couples with young children are struggling to celebrate without their extended families.  COVID-19 has disrupted your daily routines and your upcoming holidays, but it has also had a few positive effects. You’ve probably simplified your life, and you may like what that’s doing for your health and relationships.

For example, 59% of fathers said they feel closer to their children as the result of complying with coronavirus restrictions. That’s according to one survey by the Canadian Men’s Health Foundation.

Many of them also told the researchers that they want to stay more engaged in the future but realize that will be challenging when they resume commuting and working long hours.   

Is the pandemic helping you to get back to basics?  Try these tips for enjoying simple pleasures and doing more with less, during the holidays.

Bonding with Family

Sheltering under the same roof can be stressful, but it can also strengthen your connections. Appreciate your loved ones and treat them with kindness and respect.  

Set up a zoom meeting or FaceTime with family members that you aren't able to see in person.  Appreciate that you are doing your best to comply with the CDC guidelines and wanting to keep your loved ones healthy and safe.

Try these techniques: 

  1. Share more. Some of the most rewarding conversations you’ll have with your partner and your young children happen naturally when you’re doing things together. Give them more of your targeted attention and time.  

  2. Share responsibilities. Chores allow children to contribute to family life and prepare them for adulthood. Build their self-esteem by putting them in charge of an age appropriate task.  Maybe they can help with preparing your Thanksgiving feast of family favorite recipes.

  3. Resolve conflicts. You’re bound to disagree sometimes. Agree on roles and responsibilities and be willing to compromise.  Slow down and just listen.  You both have something important to offer.

  4. Have fun. Enjoy each other’s company. Play board games and do crafts. Find a hobby you can work on together or at least in the same room.

Staying Fit

Some news sources say that Americans are exercising less and gaining weight. Others say good nutrition and working out are on the rise. Whichever description fits you is really up to you.

You can make wholesome choices with these strategies: 

  1. Eat healthy. Cooking at home gives you more control over ingredients and portion sizes. Stock your kitchen with whole foods. Plan your menus and limit snacking.  Yes, you can have a cheat day on Thanksgiving!

  2. Head outdoors. Green spaces lift your spirits and make working out seem less effortful. Go for a run or play catch in your backyard. Research nearby parks and trails where your family can move around and keep a safe distance.

  3. Design a home gym. Set aside a space for cardio and strength training. You can do body weight exercises if you have minimal equipment.

  4. Practice self-care. Safeguard your physical and mental wellbeing. Prioritize sleep, physical activity, and nutrition. Think positive and repeat comforting affirmations. 

Finding Your Purpose 

Dealing with any hardship can be an opportunity to build character. Use your extra free time to create a more meaningful life.

Consider these ideas:

  1. Meditate and pray. Invest in your spiritual development. Read inspirational texts. Browse online for videos and podcasts that many faith communities are offering. Start a daily meditation practice.  One of my favorites is

  2. Help others. Shifting your attention to others can help you to keep your own troubles in perspective.  Ask your favorite charity about how to volunteer online.  See if your elderly neighbors need groceries or an occasional phone call.

  3. Continue learning. Make a list of subjects you want to explore for your personal enrichment or career advancement.  Read books and take courses online.  See what your local library has to offer on their website or through curbside services.

  4. Limit screen time. Resist the temptation to binge watch TV shows and movies.  Save your time and energy for activities with a greater pay off. 

You’re probably eager to send your kids to daycare or pre-school and share a meal with friends. On the other hand, the pandemic restrictions may have introduced some positive changes that you’ll want to continue. Simple living makes you happier and healthier even when you start cutting back out of necessity.

Remember, we're in the home stretch and hope and a vaccine is on the way.   

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family,

❤️ Lori


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Are you a parent with a young child or two? Then I bet you're feeling frustrated, exhausted, and overwhelmed with the never-ending To Do list that comes with growing a family. This "Date State" guide will help you feel closer and more connected in your marital/couple relationship!