• Kaitlyn Landaverde, APA, & Olivia Sarton, APA

It’s the Most Dangerous Time of the Year



The holiday season is typically a time for family and friends to gather together and celebrate. Relatives catch up on the family news, old pals reconnect at parties, gifts are exchanged, and everyone is joyous. Well, not this year. As unfortunate as it is, the gathering is going to have to wait, because Covid-19 has not disappeared.


It is a common misconception that the global pandemic reached its peak in the summer months of 2020. In July, the number of new cases documented each day in the United States climbed as high as 75,000. As of October 20, cases were still averaging more than 50,000 per day (New York Times).


Each of us must do our best to prevent the spread of this deadly virus. While this may mean spending the holiday season apart from loved ones, it doesn’t mean that Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa have to be miserable.


It may feel as though there is nothing to do this holiday season, with all the restrictions and precautions, but that is far from the truth. There are still many ways to celebrate.


As someone who loves holiday drinks, I desperately miss the experience of cafes in the winter season, but who says we can’t still have that? Here are some wintery and delicious options for when you want to be your own barista.

  1. Candy Cane Milkshake:

Ingredients:

  • 3 Cups of Vanilla Ice Cream

  • 1 Cup of Milk (almond milk works great too)

  • I Tablespoon of Peppermint Extract

  • 4 Broken Up Candy Canes

  • Whip Cream

  • Pink Food Coloring (Optional)

Instructions:

  1. Blend ice cream, milk, and food coloring until smooth

  2. Pour into glass

  3. Throw broken bits of candy cane into food processor

  4. Add toppings

  5. Serve and enjoy :)

2. Cookie Crumble Frappe


Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup of Coffee

  • Flavored Creamer ( your preference)

  • 1 Tsp of Sugar

  • Chocolate Syrup

  • 1 Cup of Ice

  • Cookies (you preference)

Instructions:

  1. Mix coffee and creamer together

  2. Blend preferred cookies, coffee, ice, and chocolate syrup together

  3. Top with whip cream and cookie crumble

  4. Serve and voila!

Next up is a creative spin to hot chocolate perfect for any cozy night!


3. Hot Chocolate Bombs


Ingredients/Tools:

  • Chocolate

  • Hot Cocoa Powder

  • Marshmallows

  • Silicone Sphere Molds

  • Cupcake Pan

  • Cupcake Liners

Instructions:

  1. Melt chocolate

  2. Pour chocolate into molds

  3. Refrigerate

  4. Pour chocolate into molds again (for thicker layers)

  5. Refrigerate

  6. Pour desired amount of hot cacao powder and marshmallows into mold

  7. Melt one side of chocolate semi sphere (the melted outline of the sphere will act as a glue)

  8. Place the hot cocoa and marshmallow filled semi sphere in lined cupcake pan (keeping the sphere in place)

  9. Stick other semi sphere onto the filled one

  10. Refrigerate for 45 minutes - 1 hour

Place a hot chocolate bomb into hot milk and watch the magic happen!


The holiday season is all about sharing memories with family and friends. Avoiding large gatherings can make it feel impossible to get in the holiday spirit. Movies in the backyard under the stars with a projector is an amazing way to keep distance and still have fun. Zoom movie night in your bed with friends and/or family is another alternative. There is no better time for a movie marathon then a cozy winter night. So many films to choose, from comedy to heart-warming!


15 Movie Suggestions

  1. It’s A Wonderful Life (PG)

  2. A Christmas Story (PG)

  3. Elf (PG)

  4. Home Alone (PG)

  5. Love Actually (R)

  6. A Christmas Carol (PG)

  7. The Family Man (PG-13)

  8. Christmas With The Kranks (PG)

  9. The Grinch (Not Rated)

  10. The Holiday (PG-13)

  11. Four Christmases (PG-13)

  12. Miracle on 34th Street (PG)

  13. Santa Claus 2 (G)

  14. While You Were Sleeping (PG)

  15. Scrooge (PG)

The lack of social gatherings around this time of year is difficult on everyone and may make getting into the holiday spirit feel impossible. Looking forward to family gatherings and ice skating with friends while still avoiding large gatherings and keeping a safe distance can make getting in the holiday spirit difficult. But there are so many ways to have fun this holiday season while keeping you, your friends and family safe!

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