There is still plenty to be positive about for Christmas 2020. The shops have reopened and travel suspensions will be lifted. All places of worship are allowed to have Christmas services. Most importantly up to three families can celebrate Christmas together. So lets spread some joy this Christmas.
This year has been rough to put it mildly. All small businesses have been struggling and many have had to take out loans or have closed all together. There is a small way in which we can all bring a little merriment. The shops are opening again, and we all know what that means- shopping! Lots of shopping. But instead of buying your presents online, why not give the local economy a boost and shop on the high street?
The shop assistants are dying to talk to you and would love nothing better for Christmas than to see your friendly faces in their stores. Even though we still have to wear masks, we can still smile with our eyes and voices. Even on your worst day, speaking to someone new can be the greatest thing in the world (and that’s coming from an introvert). You never know the difference a conversation can make, and sometimes lending an ear to someone who has not spoken in months is all the joy they need.
For independent shop owners you will be doing more than giving them a reason to smile. You are literally helping them to put food on the table and keep their business afloat. Independent businesses are the bedrock of the UK economy, and are vital for keeping the local community alive.
Have a Christmas Adventure
Harrogate is particularly lovely this time of year, and the RHS Gardens, Fountains Abbey and Stockeld Park are all open for their annual Christmas Light shows. Each one of them offers a truly magical experience. Most of these historic sites rely on public donations, meaning your visits are essential for ensuring they will still be around for generations to come.
All Christmas Lights have been given the go ahead. Why not take a stroll around your local neighbourhood and parks to see the lights?
Even if you cannot get all the family together this year, you can still open your presents together through WhatsApp, skype or zoom. Simply agree a time beforehand and get everyone to gather around their trees. Just make sure you capture the moment on your camera!
Why not have a zoom Christmas Dinner? Again, a bit of planning ahead of time is required to make sure everyone is coordinated.
You could also film the children opening their presents then send the video to the grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins.
According to the rules up to three families can meet for Christmas. If your own family cannot be around why not invite the neighbours or someone who is in need of some added joy?
Most importantly, remember we are all in this together and if you are finding things a bit rough you are not alone. This Christmas let us make a real effort to help and support each other as much as possible. A friendly smile, wave or just listening goes a long way, and if we do these little things, no matter what happens we will be spreading joy this Christmas.